•Chelimo clocked 33:03.81 to beat Ndiwa (33:04.01) and Edith Chelimo (33:07.38) to second and third respectively.
•Chelimo will not compete in the 25-lap race during the trials but will instead, concentrate on her 5,000m speciality.
Commonwealth Games’ 5000m silver medallist Margaret Chelimo overcame pressure from the 2018 African champion Stacy Ndiwa to win the10,000m race during the 7th edition of the National Police Service track and field Championships at Moi Stadium, Kasarani.
Chelimo, who won the 5,000m during the World Challenge in Hengelo, the Netherlands last month, exchanged leads with Ndiwa and her namesake Edith Chelimo before taking charge in the later stages and producing the winning sprint in the last 400 metres. The win, though, came as a surprise to the Eastern-based officer who least expected to win.
Chelimo clocked 33:03.81 to beat Ndiwa (33:04.01) and Edith Chelimo (33:07.38) to second and third respectively. Sylvia Kibet placed fourth in 33:07.57 while Pascalia Chepkorir completed the top five places in 33:14.07ahead of sixth-placed Grace Momanyi (33:29.20).
She said: “Actually, it was my first time to run the 10, 000m on the track and I didn’t expect to win. However, I think my training helped me a great deal.”
“I took part in this race to gauge my body laps and to my surprise, I won it. However, I will not compete in the 25-lap race during the trials but will instead, concentrate on my 5,000m speciality,” she added.
Ndiwa on her part said the race provided the kind of challenge she has been yearning for ahead of the trials. “I wanted to use the race to gauge my performance and I am contended, considering my opponents were equal to the task. I did my training well and I was confident prior to the race. Finishing second wasn’t a bad result,” she said.
“I knew Chelimo would be a big threat coming into this race and I tried to keep up with her but she proved to be in a different class. I will have to go back to the drawing board to improve my speed in readiness for the national trials,” added Ndiwa.
In the men’s 5,000m semis, Ernest Kimutai (14:04.91), Timothy Katam (14:05.14) and Cleophas Ngetich (14:08.10) booked their final slots and will be up against Heat 2 finalists James Kibet (13:56.68), Silas Kiptoo (13:57.31) and Hilary Maiyo (14:03.44). The men’s 1,500m final today has attracted Collins Cheboi (3:46.75), Paul Kipsiele (3:46.97), Amos Kipkalia (3:47.79), Gilbert Kwemoi (3:45.59), Nixon Chepseba (3:45.78) and Elias Kipruto (3:46.79).