FOCUS ON TOUR

Plans for X-Country Tour in high gear ahead of February 12 date

The organising committee clarify they have not settled on John Ngugi as the definite name of the event and will communicate once they have made headway.

In Summary

•The organising committee, chaired by Paul Mutwii, have settled on Lobo village in Eldoret as the venue for the one-day event

•The course is still undergoing more work ahead of the arrival of a technical team from World Athletics

•AK president Jack Tuwei described the Cross Country Tour as a sign of the high esteem with which Kenya is held by World Athletics

Daisy Cherotich (L) with Sheila Chelangat lead the women's 10km race during the National Cross Country Championships at Ngong Race Course
Daisy Cherotich (L) with Sheila Chelangat lead the women's 10km race during the National Cross Country Championships at Ngong Race Course
Image: ERICK BARASA

As the World Cross Country tour kicks off this weekend in Cardiff, Wales, the committee tasked with organising the Kenyan leg of the series are working round the clock ahead of the February 12 event in Eldoret. 

Paul Mutwii, chair of the committee, said they have already identified the venue for the one-day event and are working on other logistics. 

"We were in Eldoret to try and identify the best venue around to host this event. We have settled on Lobo village, situated between the airport and town. It is a suitable site and we are still working on it. Immediately we finalise on it, we will invite the technical team from World Athletics," Mutwii, also AK's director of competitions, said. 

He also clarified that they have not settled on John Ngugi Cross Country Tour as the definite name of the event and will communicate on the matter once they have made headway. 

"We tentatively named it John Ngugi Cross Country Tour because he is a legend having won the World Cross Country five times. However, this name change is yet to be certified and we will communicate the same to you once we come up with a definitive name," he said. 

Speaking at the same time, AK president Jack Tuwei said the early preparations are necessary due to the minimal time between now and February especially with regards to invitations. 

"When you send invitations to athletes, you have to include the route, altitude of the place and the weather conditions because this will determine whether they honour the invite or not. The course will also have to be inspected and approved," Tuwei said. 

He described the Cross Country Tour as a sign of the high esteem with which Kenya is held by World Athletics after successfully hosting various global athletics events  in recent years. 

"When you are honoured to host these events, you should do everything professionally. The cross country tour was given to us the other day and we are the only African country to host this event so far. We must do everything speedily," he said. 

Apart from the tour, next year's World Athletics Continental Tour Gold — better known as Kip Keino Classic — will be held much earlier on May 7, unlike the past two editions held in October 2020 and September this year.