Kenya's Gilbert Yegon and Betty Chepleting will seek the victory at Eindhoven marathon
Kenya's Gilbert Yegon and Betty Chepleting hope to break through and win a big city marathon when they line up at the Eindhoven marathon on Sunday in the Netherlands.
Yegon leads a quartet of Kenyan stars keen to crash the course record and boost their selection prospects to the national team ahead of next year's Olympic Games in Tokyo, Japan.
Yegon, a bronze medalist from the Stockholm marathon, is seeking his first win in 2019. Last year, Yegon won the Dusseldorf marathon and was fifth at the Singapore marathon.
"I hope to run a fast race and boost my personal best time. But the important thing is to win against a strong challenge from Ethiopian and Turk runners. However, my training has gone on well and will be looking forward to a good performance," Yegon said in Nairobi on Friday.
Leading the women's charge will be Chepleting, who hopes to bounce back from a poor showing in China's Dongfeng Wuhan marathon, where she was seventh in two hours, 34 minutes and 26 seconds.
"This will be my third race in 2019. I was seventh in Wuhan and failed to finish in Nagoya. I also won in Tunis in 2018 and hopefully, I will be able to overcome my challenges and fears to stage a good show in Eindhoven and win," said Chepleting.
Race Director Marc Corstjens believes they have top elite runners who can break the two hours and six minutes mark.
"Since 2014, winners of the Eindhoven marathon managed to complete the course within an average time of 2:06:26. But only if all conditions like the weather, are excellent. However, their finishing times ensure Eindhoven's marathon is among the ten fastest marathons in the world," Corstjens said.
On paper, the four Kenyans have the fastest time. Yegon has a fast time of 2:06:18 with Laban Mutai (2:07:38) and Reuben Keiro (2:08:12) in the men's race and Chepleting (2:31:18) in the women's race.
posted Saturday October 12th