The Star (Nairobi)

Kenya: Uhuru Gardens to Host the National Cross Country Trials

Uhuru Gardens will host the national cross country trials slated for February 16. Athletics Kenya (AK) public relations officer, Peter Angwenyi said they have now settled for Uhuru Gardens after consultations.

AK had earlier raised serious doubt that the event would be held at Uhuru Gardens after several athletes complained of the poor conditions .

The athletes said parts of the ground were waterlogged and would make it very difficult come February 16. However, AK effort to shift the event to Ngong Race course stalled. Angwenyi said the technical committee led by vice chairman Paul Mutwii had inspected the course and decided to re-route the course to make it more friendly to the athletes.

"The technical committee inspected the course and made changes. I believe the athletes will be ready to run at the course come next Saturday," added Angwenyi. Angwenyi said preparations for the event are almost complete and six foreign countries are expected to take part.

"We expect athletes from South Africa, Great Britian, New Zealand, Uganda, Swede, " added Angwenyi.

A total of 24 athletes will be selected to represent the country at the World cross country championships planned for March 24 in Bydgoszcz , Poland. Kenya will be seeking to replicate the eight gold medals won in the same venue three years ago.

AK said the athletes would train for four weeks and not three for the World Championships. Winners in the senior men's and senior women's category will earn Sh217,500 each.

Kenya Commercial Bank (KCB), who sponsor the domestic cross country series and national championships have already set aside (Sh2m) specifically for organisation and prize money for the national championships.

Elsewhere, the North Rift cross country championships is slated for this weekend in Eldoret. Over 500 athletes are expected to grace the occasion.

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