26 April 2014

Kenya: Jeptoo's Mission

After winning her third title in Boston Marathon early this week, Rita Jeptoo has now set her eyes on the world record currently held by Briton Paula Radcliffee.

Jeptoo has a personal best time of 2:18.57 which she ran in Boston last weekend while breaking the course record while the world mark stands at 2:15.25.

Speaking on arrival from Boston on Thursday at Eldoret Airport, Jeptoo said the world record would be her next step although she will need to settle down first and plan for it well. "I will let you know when I am ready for it as long as the almighty God keeps be in good health. However, one thing is for sure, that day will come to pass one day if not soon," she added.

Commenting on her performance in Boston, Jeptoo said she could not believe it when she crossed the line under the course record. "It was a really hard course but I thank God I emerged victorious. In fact when I finished, I was still very strong," she added.

The three-time Boston Marathon champion said she will take a break for the time being as she embarks on her new mission of breaking the record. Wilson Chebet, who placed second in the men's marathon, said he would have won the race but got his mathematics all wrong.

"We allowed the winner to open the gap and by the time we realised, it was too late and we couldn't catch up," said Chebet, who landed in Eldoret alongside Jeptoo. Reigning world 800m champion Eunice Sum, former world 800m champion Janet Jepkosgei and world 5,000m silver medallist Mercy Cherono were among the athletes at hand to welcome Jeptoo.

Nandi Governor Dr. Cleophas Lagat said they are committed to rewarding and recognising athletes.

Meanwhile, Nandi County yesterday held a ground breaking ceremony for the renovation of Kipchoge Keino Stadium in Kapsabet. A total of Sh800m has been set aside for the renovation of the facility upon completion. "We can only improve the athletes performance by having the right facilities in place and that is why we are keen to renovate the Kapsabet Stadium," Lagat said.

He said the county will allocate Sh100m each financial year for the stadium in a bid to improve it international standards. With the project set to be an athletics landmark in the region, Lagat said they have plans to anchor the county to be a sports tourism hub. "The county is rich in athletic-talent and we will soon roll out plans to position the county to be a sports tourism region," Lagat added.

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