•Kwemoi set a new course record of 59:14 on his way to leading a clean Kenyan podium sweep
•Double world 5000m champion Hellen Obiri set the 10th fastest time in women's half marathon on her way to victory
•Both athletes will be hoping for more success in track races
Newly-crowned Istanbul Half Marathon champion Rodgers Kwemoi says he wants to lower his personal best for the 21km road race after Sunday's win in the Turkish capital.
Kwemoi set a new course record of 59:14 on his way to leading a clean Kenyan podium sweep with Daniel Mateiko (1:00:05) and Emmanuel Bor (1:00:20) finishing second and third respectively.
"The next step in the half marathon is to run 58:00. But I will first focus on qualifying for the World Championships, where I want to run the 10,000m. I will run a marathon in the future, but only after the Olympics," the 2021 national cross country champion said.
It was a target attained for Kwemoi who had vowed to continue his great streak this year after finishing second at February's RAK Half Marathon in the United Arab Emirates where he timed 58:30, behind world record holder Jacob Kiplimo of Uganda.
However, Kwemoi admitted the race in Istanbul pushed him to the limit because of the windy weather conditions.
"Other than the windy conditions, the race was generally good. I also felt my hamstring at around 10km, so I could not go that fast anymore," the 2018 Commonwealth 10,000m bronze medalist said.
Similarly, double world 5000m champion Hellen Obiri's focus turns to Oregon where she will be hoping to successfully defend her world title for the third time.
The Istanbul race was one to remember for Obiri whose 1:04:48 is the 10th fastest time in the women's half marathon.
She crossed the finish line ahead of the Ethiopian pair of Tsehay Gemechu (1:05:52) and Bekelech Gudeta (1:06:35) in second and third respectively.
"It was so windy during the second half of the race. I would have run a bit faster were it not for the windy conditions. Overall, it was a good race," the Olympics 5000m silver medalist said.
Obiri added: "I want to run the 5000m at the World Championships since I am the defending champion. My first marathon will then more likely follow in 2023."
In other road races over the weekend, Kenyan Gladys Kiptoo timed 2:28:45 to finish second at the Rome Marathon as Ethiopian Sechale Dalasa took the top honour in 2:26:09. Another Ethiopian, Tadelech Bekele, finished third in 2:31:01.
Kenyans were also on top at the Torino Half Marathon where Simon Ekidor and Joyce Muthoni Njeru triumphed in the men's and women's categories.
Ekidor clocked 1:03:10 ahead of Italian Giuseppe Gerattana (1:04:39) as another Kenyan, Amos Kipkemboi, came third in 1:04:58.
Njeru, the reigning Mountain Running World Cup champion, timed 1:13:23 to beat the Italian duo of Aurora Bado (1:17:47) and Axelle Vicari (1:18:09).
Kenyan Joseph Koech walked home all smiles after his win at the Massif Forestier Half Marathon in Nuaille, France where he clocked 1:03:22.
Moroccan Khalid Lablaq was second in 1:04:04 as another Kenyan, Shadrack Kipyegon, completed the podium places in 1:06:14.