Edinah Chebitok and Purity Komen (right) participating in 10km during AK Cross Country Championships in Iten, Elgeyo Marakwet County yesterday. [Peter Ochieng, Standard]

Edinah Jebitok, who represented the country in the 1500m at the Tokyo Olympics, was the winner of the second Athletics Kenya Cross Country Championships in Iten, Elgeyo Marakwet County yesterday.

Iten-based Robert Kiprop exhilarated home fans after he superbly clinched the men’s cross country title in a race run in punishingly high altitude (elevation of 2400m).

Top performers in the second leg, staged in the country’s popular athletics training destination, said they are eying slots in the Kenyan teams to the World Cross Country Tour in Eldoret, World Championships in the US and Commonwealth Games in Birmingham, in 2022.

Strong challenge

Jebitok, who recently transitioned to senior ranks, faced a strong challenge from Purity Komen who led from the gun until the last three kilometres of the senior 10km women’s race.

She cut the tape in 32:26.3 as Komen followed in 32:24.9 as former African Cross Country champion Alice Aprot (33:20.2) closed the podium in the race graced by AK President Jack Tuwei.

“I entered this race to gauge my strength after a long rest. I am now going back to train. I gained much experience at the Tokyo Olympics and it is my hope that I will compete at the World Cross Country next year,” Jebitok said.

Phylis Yano, Agnes Jebet Ngetich and Lilian Chebii finished fourth, fifth and sixth.

Kiprop clocked 29:11.7 to win the senior men’s race while Titus Mbishei finished second.

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