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January 16, 2019

Cherono’s dream: Amsterdam Marathon champion keen to race in either Boston or Tokyo

Kenya’s Lawrence Cherono during a past race / COURTESY
Kenya’s Lawrence Cherono during a past race / COURTESY
After conquering Amsterdam Marathon last month, Kenya’s Lawrence Cherono is now targeting a repeat performance in either Boston or Tokyo Marathon next year.
Cherono said he has not figured out where he will run next but would like to compete in either of the two races. “ I will be glad if the organisers can invite me in one of the two races,” he noted.
Cherono, who smashed the course record in the Dutch capital last month by clocking 2:04:05 to erase his previous mark of 2:05:08 set last year, said it will be an honour for him to compete in either of the two events next year. “I am hopeful I will get an invite from the organisers of the two events. I have never run in Tokyo or Boston and If I get an invite, I will give it a try and compete against the best in the world,” added Cherono. He said he is relishing the challenge of competing in the big city marathons against the elite runners. “ I’m ready to face the best if given the opportunity and I hope I will compete against them next year,” he added.
Cherono said his win in Amsterdam, where he beat Ethiopia’s world 10,000 metres record holder Kenenisa Bekele, was a major boost for him. “I didn’t want to run ahead of my competitors and so I had to stay with them until the last few kilometers when I broke away and to my surprise, there was no reaction,” said the athlete.
Bekele, the race favourite, dropped out of the race with a kilometre left after falling behind quite early. He attributed his success to sacrifices and hard work.
“ I’m asking young athletes to be patient. These things don’t happen overnight, it takes a lot of hard work to get to the top,” he added.
Cherono, who hails from Baringo but trains at Kaptagat, has asked top athletes from the region to mentor upcoming athletes. “We have a very good crop of runners who are coming through and with the likes of National Olympic Committee of Kenya president Paul Tergat, I am sure we can help junior athletes scale up the ladder,” he added. Cherono cited his brother Benson Cherono, who won the Milan Marathon in 2006 by clocking 2:07:58as his role mode.
“He is the one I look up to because of the success he had in the past,”  he added.
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