Kipsang to lead classy men's field

Kipsang to lead classy men's field

Record numbers enter May 18 race

Kipsang to lead classy men's field

Geoffrey Kipsang, the reigning world half-marathon champion, will head a quality field of elite runners in the TCS World 10K Bangalore here on May 18.

Kipsang, former world junior cross country champion and winner here in 2012, went on to achieve greater laurels at the highest level when he triumphed in the half-marathon championships in Copenhagen in March this year.

The Kenyan is a familiar face on the Indian road-running circuit, having finished runner-up twice in the 2011 and 2013 Delhi half-marathon. He will challenge the established order here, with compatriot Alex Oloitiptip returning to defend the title he won last year.

Ethiopia’s Birhanu Legese is the fastest in the field with a best of 27:34, better than the course record of 27:51 set by Eritrea’s Zersenay Tadese in the first edition in 2008.

Ugandan Moses Kipsiro, runner-up in 2008 and 2010, will also make another appearance in Bangalore and will be looking forward to racing in a country where he achieved fame on the track, with a 5000-10000 double at the 2010 Commonwealth Games in New Delhi. Having beaten Wilson Kipsang at the Great Manchester 10K last year, Moses will be looking forward to making a bigger impact here.

Applying a touch of class to the women’s field will be Kenyan Linet Masai, the world champion over 10000M in 2009. Lucy Kabuu, winner of the 2011 Delhi half-marathon who was fourth here last time, will look to go up a notch or two while Ethiopia’s Guteni Shone, runner-up behind Gladys Cherono last year, also returns.

Another strong contender will be Ethiopian Meselech Melkamu, winner of five bronze medals at world cross country championships and a silver-winner behind Linet at the 2009 World Championships in the 10000M. 

Bigger field

Meanwhile, the promoters, Procam International, announced that a record number of runners have registered across different races. Vivek Singh, Joint Managing Direcor, Procam, told a press conference that 25,000 runners have registered for the race.

 The Open 10K run, which includes the Nike The Young and The Fast contest and also the DHL Corporate Champions race, accounts for 13,200 entries, an increase of 2500 from last year’s figure.