Foreign athletes in Eldoret for third edition of Sirikwa Classic

Friday, February 2nd, 2024 01:30 | By
Sirikwa Classic Gold World Cross Country Tour officials led by technical coach David Letting (left) put markings on the race course at Lobo village yesterday. PD/Emmanuel Masinde

International athletes started arriving in Eldoret, Uasin Gishu County yesterday for the third edition of the Sirikwa Classic, Word Cross Country gold lebel event set for tomorrow at the Lobbo Village in Kapseret.

Ukraine 5,000m national champion Maryna Nemchenko who will be making her debut at the  Sirikwa Classic, arrived in the morning and was happy to have arrived after almost a two days long flight.

“This is my first time in Kenya for the event, I hope it will be interesting. After the race I will travel to Italy for my Olympics training camp,” said Nemchenko.

The 28 year old, was joined by Hendrik Pfeiffer of Germany who be left behind to continue his training at Iten for Berlin Half Marathon in April and for another race later on.

“I have been to Kenya on several occasions this is like my second home, it’s a great opportunity to start my two months training with high level competition. My shape is very good I try keep up with some of the best Kenyan runners in my second appearance of the race,” said Pfeiffer who clocked 2hours 7 minutes and 14 seconds to finish third at Chevron Houston Marathon, USA last month. Stefan Gravril of Romania will be targeting to test his endurance levels to enable him break the Romanian national record of 13:15.0 in 5,000m and 10,000m 27:40.06 for a chance to represent his country at the Paris Olympics later this year.

“I expect to have a good run against the Kenyan and Ethiopian boys see how I am doing, though it will all depend tomorrow on how I will be feeling after the long flight. My target it to be the top European athlete at the finish.” Said Gravril who holds a NR of 14.06 in 5kilometers. Closer home John Nahhay and Grace Jackson Charles will be representing Tanzania for the first time in Kenya. “I feel good to be here I have been preparing well, I know this is a high attitude area and it is not going to be easy but we shall see how it goes,” said Nahhay.

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