There will be more than just the usual rivalry during the Kenya Defence Forces (KDF) and Kenya Police Cross Country Championships slated for Moi Air Base and Ngong Racecourse, respectively, on Friday.
Top athletes will be using the events to prepare for international races, among them the Ras Al Khaimah (RAK) Half Marathon on February 19 in the United Arab Emirates.
Former world half marathon champion Geoffrey Kamworor of Police, who is making a comeback after one-year break and world 5,000 metres champion Hellen Obiri from KDF are the latest entrants in the RAK Half Marathon.
Kamworor, 28, will be going for his record eighth senior men's title at the Kenya Police Cross County Championships while Obiri will be targeting her fourth crown at the KDF competition.
World Half Marathon silver medallist Kibiwott Kandie will not only be seeking to defend his title at the KDF meet, but also at RAK Half Marathon.
Kamworor, who last competed at the National Cross Country Championships on February 15 last year, has recovered from injuries sustained in a freak accident on June 25 last year in Eldoret.
He was hit from behind by a speeding motorcycle while training. He was operated on at St Luke's Hospital in Eldoret after sustaining head and ankle injuries.
"It's time to race again! After months of working hard to recover from injury, I'm very excited to be on the starting line again in the RAK Half Marathon to get my season going," said the former World Half Marathon record holder.
Kamworor who the RAK Half Marathon title in 2013 was unable to defend his World Half Marathon title in Poland on October 17 last year due to the accident. Kamworor has won the world half marathon title thrice in 2014, 2016 and 2018.
Uganda's Jacob Kiplimo cashed in on Kamworor's absence to win the Poland race in a Championship Record (CR) time of 58:49 as Kandie settled for silver also inside the CR time in 58:54.