Paris Marathon champion Visiline Jepkesho will highlight the Kenya Prisons Service Athletics Championships starting on Friday at the Nyayo National Stadium.
Jepkesho, who is eyeing a slot in Team Kenya’s marathon team for this year’s Rio Olympics after winning this year’s Paris Marathon on April 12 in personal best 2hours, 24min and 44sec, will feature in the women’s 10,000 metres due for the second day of the championship.
Prisons head coach Gideon Chirchir on Wednesday said that Jepkesho is among the stellar field expected at the two-day championships where they will select their team for the National Championships.
“We expect a good turnout over the two days even with the Diamond League season set to start on Friday,” Chirchir said.
Chirchir was speaking at Prisons headquarters where Commissioner General of Prisons Isaiah Osugo received a sponsorship worth Sh500,000 from Britam and Coca-Cola towards the event.
Jepkesho, who finished 20th in last year’s World Championships in Beijing, will take on seasoned long distance runners Eunice Mumbua, Miriam Muthoni, Pauline Wangui, Lilian Chelagat, Agnes Katunge and Pricilla Lochima in the race.
The 2015 Paris Marathon champion Mark Korir, who also competed for Kenya at the World Championships last year, 2015 Valencia Marathon champion John Mwangangi and former World marathon champion Luke Kibet will battle in men’s 10,000m.
Former national 400m champion Maureen Jelagat, Damaris Imbogo and Marcella Nyaboke will battle for top honours in women’s 400m and 200m.
Jelagat, who ran a personal best of 51.40 in 400m at the World Championships last year, is fresh from winning the Mauritius International Invitation and the last Athletics Kenya track and field meet in Eldoret.
Moses Kertich is the man to beat in men’s 400m hurdles that will also feature Vincent Kosgei while Kelvin Kiprotich, who is fresh from winning the 400m title at East and Central Africa Junior Championships last weekend, will compete in his specialty.
Former national 100m champion Ibrahim Muya – who is eying a comeback after a sustaining a career-threatening injury two years ago – Steve Baraza, Pius Muia and Philip Gwono will field in both 100m and 200m races.
Anthony Chemut, who featured for Kenya at the 2012 Olympics, Reuben Bett and Evans Kipkorir will face off in the men’s 800m showdown while 2015 World Relays medley silver medallist Sylvia Chesebe and Peninah Wangari will clash in women’s 800m race.