NAIROBI (Xinhua) --
Kenyan Olympic 5,000m champion Vivian Cheruiyot
will compete in the New York Half Marathon on March 18 in the
build-up to the London Marathon.
Cheruiyot, who is
the Frankfurt Marathon champion, is the third fastest in the
field with a best time of 67:44 behind Ethiopians Mamitu Daska
(66:28) and Buze Diriba (66:50).
It will be
Cheruiyot’s first race this year. Her last race was in October
last year when she raced to victory in Frankfurt clocking in
“I have a solid
training program and will be hopeful it will withstand the
challenge of New York. It is always good to see how the body
responds in competition so that you can adjust before going to
the main marathon competition,” Cheruiyot said on Wednesday.
It will be her third
marathon in two years. Cheruiyot made her debut at the distance
in London last April, finishing fourth in the high quality
The challenge of the
half marathon will mean she will have to display her sprinting
prowess. With a personal best of 67:44 in the half marathon, she
will be hoping her rivals will run slower.
The Kenyan will face
two compatriots, former Boston Marathon champion Caroline Rotich
and Betsy Saina.
entrants include Norway’s Karoline Grovdal, Mexico’s Madai Perez
and top Americans Emily Sisson, Aliphine Tuliamuk and Desiree
The elite men’s
field is headed by Kenya’s Wilson Chebet, who is also heading to
the Boston Marathon in April.
Chebet skipped the
chance to represent Kenya at the Commonwealth Games in Australia
to focus on reclaiming the Boston title.
He will face a stiff
challenge from compatriot and 2016 champion Stephen Sambu, top
American Dathan Ritzenhein and Ethiopia’s Teshome Mekonen. The
elite field will feature athletes from 15 different countries.
Sambu, 29, won the
2016 race after a third-place finish in 2014 and a photo-finish
second place in 2015. In 2016 the Kenyan made his marathon debut
in the Chicago Marathon, where he placed fifth with a time of
He followed that
with another fifth-place run last October, albeit with a time
that was nearly two-and-a-half minutes faster.
Sambu and Chebet
will face a group of Americans, including four-time Olympian
Abdi Abdirahman, two-time Olympian Dathan Ritzenhein, American
5K record-holder Ben True, and last year’s top American finisher
in the race, Chris Derrick.