Commonwealth Games 5000m silver medalist Margaret Chelimo dismantled a strong field to win 10,000m race as the National Police Service athletics championships kicked off on Thursday at the Moi International Sports Centre, Kasarani.
Chelimo representing Eastern clocked 33:03.08 with Commonwealth Games 10000m silver medalist Stacy Ndiwa of Kenya Police College coming in second in 33:04.01 while Edith Chelimo of Nairobi closed the podium in 33:07.38.
It was Edith who led for the larger part of the race with Ndiwa and Chelimo trailing behind her only for Chelimo to push forward immediately they entered the last lap a tactic that she says she had planned to execute.
“I wanted to push forward with three laps to go but I decided to be patient and wait for the last lap which proved to be the right decision,” observed Chelimo after the race.
Being her maiden appearance in 10000m, Chelimo says she will be returning to her specialty of 5000m at the national championships slated for next month as she eyes a ticket to the World Championships.
“I decided to participate in 10k because I think it will give me an ideal preparation ahead of the national,” said Chelimo.
The 26 year old who clinched her maiden Cross Country title at the Police championships at the beginning of this year said she is eager to capture her first medal at the World after finishing fifth in the 2017 competition held in London.
Elsewhere in 1500m semi finals Gilbert Kwemoi clocked 3:45.59 to emerge top in semi final edging out Nixon Chepseba who finished second in 3:45.78 as Elias Kipruto was third in 3:46.79.
Collince Cheboi clocked 3:46.97 to win another semi final with the returning former African 3000m steeplechase champion Paul Kipsiele Koech finishing second in 3:46.97 as Amos Kipkalia placed third in 3:47.23.
Ernest Kimutai stormed to victory in men’s 5000m after clocking 14:04.91 followed by Timothy Katam (14:05.14) and Cleopas Ngetich (14:08.10) who placed second and third respectively.
In another semi final, James Kibet ran to victory in 13:56.68 ahead of Silas Kiptoo (13:57.31) and Hillary Maiyo (14:03.44).
Isaac Kirwa managed 7.69 metres in long jump men’s final with Kiplangat Ruto finishing second with 7.22m while Hillary Pkiach was third with 6.93m.
The two-day competition ends tomorrow with the Law Enforcers using the annual event to select a team for the national championships cum trials for the World Championships.