New York City Marathon champion Geoffrey Kamworor has said his victory in Sunday's race has proven to the world that he is 'an athlete for all surfaces'.
Kamworor, who clocked 2 hours, 10 minutes and 53 seconds to win ahead of Wilson Kipsang (2:10:56) also said Sunday's victory came through hard work, self discipline and a proper training regime at Global Sports Communication camp in Kaptagat, Elgeyo Marakwet County.
"My success has come as a result of high standards of discipline inculcated in me at the camp. We followed strict instructions from our coaches and the management at the camp," Kamworor, who is also two-time World Half Marathon champion, told Nation Sport on phone from New York on phone after the race.
Kamworor said winning the race was dream-come-true after a rigorous training at Kaptagat Forest which he says provided a conducive environment.
"I had done enough training after a disappointing finish in 2017 London World Championship and I was confident I would be on the podium, but winning the race was a big surprise to me. I love training in Kaptagat Forest and that is what I must say brought the good results for me," said Kamworor.
Kamworor also said he was motivated to perform well by Olympics Marathon champion Eliud Kipchoge.
"Olympics Eliud Kipchoge has always been my mentor and he is the one whom I look up to. I knew he was at the finishing line and I really wanted to be the one to cut the tape and show him I can also do it," he added.
Kamworor has tremendous respect for Tokyo Marathon champion Kipsang, whom he says is a great athlete with a lot of experience.
"I respect Kipsang. He is a real fighter who has a lot of experience in marathon than I do. In the last few metres I knew he was further away and that is why I slowed down and that's why he almost beat me," said the athlete from Chepkorio in Elgeyo Marakwet County.
The athlete ended his season on Sunday on a high note after starting with a win in the IAAF World Cross Country Championships held in Kampala in March where he retained his title in the senior category.
Meanwhile, hundreds of elite and upcoming athletes braved chilly weather in Iten, Elgeyo Marakwet County, on Sunday to watch and cheer their colleagues competing in New York Marathon.
Top athletes who took part in the race were all from Elgeyo Marakwet County (Kipsang, Ednah Kiplagat, Mary Keitany, Lucas Rotich and Kamworor) with the exception of Betsy Saina from Nandi County.
The athletes converged at Keellu Resort which is owned by Kipsang. The event, organised by Bank of Africa, saw athletes get training on investment opportunities and anti-doping.