20 September 2017

Kenya: Fast-Rising Valary Aiyabei Ready for Big Stage

As athletes prepare for Sunday's Berlin Marathon, many will be looking forward to good run and to achieve greater goals in their careers.

It's an athlete's dream to win a race or at least be on the podium, and Prague Marathon champion Valary Aiyabei is no exception.

Aiyabei will team up with 2015 Berlin Marathon champion Gladys Cherono for the race on the streets of the German capital.

Fresh from breaking the course record for Prague Marathon in May, Aiyabei has recovered well and is aiming for a good race.

Aiyabei says her training sessions went well and she is looking forward to running a good race in Berlin where she will compete in her first major marathon.

"Having recovered well from the race that I participated in May, I want to be in the podium on Sunday in Germany. My training has been incident-free," the athlete said.

She insists she is not scared of competing against big names from Ethiopia.

"I know there will be stiff competition from the Ethiopians who are tough but I have also done enough training and I'm ready to compete against them. I will run my own race and just hope for the best," said Aiyabei.

"I have improved in my training compared with what I did before I participated in Prague Marathon in May. I concentrated on the long runs which entails covering more than 35km during training," said the Iten-based athlete.

Aiyabei ran in Prague in May, breaking the course record to win in 2hours, 21:57min ahead of Ethiopians Amene Beriso and Tadelech Bekele who were second and third respectively.

The athlete also won both 2016 Barcelona Marathon and 2016 Valencia Marathon in a course record.

Aiyabei is coached by her husband Kennedy Tarus who also doubles up as a pacemaker in marathon races. According to Tarus, Aiyabei has trained well and should seal a podium finish and lower the course record should weather conditions allow.

"She can lower the course record in Berlin. We just hope for the best. We've done our part," said Tarus.

The two Kenyans are expected to face stiff competition from Aberu Kebede (2012) winner, Amane Beriso who was second in Dubai Marathon (2016) and Meseret Mengistu who was 2015 Paris winner all from Ethiopia.

Kenya

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