NAIROBI (Xinhua) --
Paris Marathon champion Paul Lonyangata is back into action and
will showcase his hunger for a win to compensate lost time
through injury at the Singapore Marathon on Sunday.
The 2018 and 2017
Paris Marathon winner headlines the entries for the Standard
Chartered Singapore Marathon this weekend. Around 50,000 runners
The 25-year-old had
started the year with promise, but a late injury in his training
forced the former Lisbon Marathon champion to bide his time as
he missed out on his debut on United States soil when he pulled
out of the Chicago Marathon in October.
But now with his
knee injury healed, he is optimistic ahead of his start at the
humid and hot Singapore city course where the winner will take
home 50,000 U.S. dollars.
“The plan was to
compete in Chicago, but I then sustained an injury that has made
it hard for me to train. Doctors advised me against putting it
under pressure in training so I had to ease off,” said
Lonyangata on Wednesday.
“I’m back in
training and fit to run. Singapore will be real test, a good
idea. I want to go and win,” he added.
Lonyangata says that
he sees this race against top opponents as an ideal opportunity
to answer his many critics.
To excel on a hot
and humid course is not an easy task, but after putting his legs
up for the better part of 2018, he will be among the few
athletes who will arrive in Singapore with fresh legs and hunger
for a win.
Apart from his win
in Paris in April, Lonyangata has not competed again on the
international scene. With the 2019 World Championships just
around the corner, he needs to chalk up wins to boost his resume
and force the selectors to give him the nod for the Doha, Qatar
competition in October 2019.
“You can’t live off
one win. You must build on it and that is what is pushing me,
inspiring me to work hard to overcome my challenges to be the
best in the sport,” he said.
Marathon has maintained the same script since 2002, with Kenyan
Cosmas Kimutai last
year breasted the tape in 2:22:48 to prolong Kenya’s
stranglehold on the elite men’s title. The men’s record of
2:11:25 was set by Kimutai’s compatriot Luke Kibet in 2009.
In the women race,
Pamela Rotich, 34, won in 2:38:31 edging former champ Rebecca
Kenya have now won
10 out of the 16 women’s titles in Singapore, with Salina Kosgei
setting the course record of 2:31:55 in 2006.