Rhonex Kipruto is set to take part in the 2018 World Junior Championships in July after winning New York Road Runners 10km race on Sunday.
Kipruto clocked 27:08 smashing 27:35 course record set by Leornard Komon in 2011 and setting the fastest 10K record on the US soil.
His coach Brother Colm O’Connel disclosed that Kipruto will take part in the competition that will go down in Tampere, Finland.
“Our goal is to ensure Kipruto makes it to the Kenyan team to World Junior Championships. He will be competing in the 10,000 metres race,” Colm said.
Colm said Kipruto’s preparation for the junior competition will be done through well-spaced races ahead of the world competition.
The 18-year-old 2018 U-20 African cross country champion and his training compatriot Mathew Kimeli scooped the first and second places in the New York’s Central Park duel. Kimeli cut the tape in 27:19 ahead of Teshome Mekonen, who clocked 28:10 to take the third position. The duo’s win put Iten in the spot light and more so Brother Colm, who described the winner as the world’s new stars. “Kipruto and Kimeli will represent the country in the 2020 Olympic Games in Japan if stay focused,” Colm said.
Colm has trained Kipruto and Kimeli for four and six years respectively in the country’s oldest athletics training camp at St. Patrick’s High School Iten.
“It is a fantastic encouragement. It motivates me to nurture more athletes and it gives credibility to my programme,” Colm said about performance.
He said the duo have demonstrated consistency in their performances throughout their junior athletics duels. Kipruto pocketed Sh3 million for breaking the course record and an additional Sh1 million for the win. Kipruto and Kimeli comes from Keiyo South, Elgeyo Marakwey county.
Diriba Mergia from Ethiopia clocked 32:04 to win the women’s 10K race, beating Monicah Ngige (32:15) of Kenya and Ethiopian Sinke Dessie Biyadgilgn (32:56).