Triple Belfast Half Marathon champion Gideon Kipsang Kimosop will face Commonwealth Games marathon athlete Kevin Seaward in tomorrow’s Bangor 10k which has yet another huge entry in excess of 1,000 runners.
Last Sunday 29-year-old Kenyan Kipsang was unchallenged in the Deep RiverRock Half Marathon where he enjoyed a three minutes plus winning margin against modest opposition.
Things may be a little different in Bangor where he will be defending his title against marathon maestro Seaward of St Malachy’s who will be making one of his rare competitive appearances in the Province.
The 32-year-old, who lives in Manchester, has enjoyed his most successful year ever. He was an outstanding fourth in the Gold Coast Games Marathon in April, followed by an impressive 15th place as first Irish finisher in the European championships in Berlin in August.
However, as the Bangor distance may be a little short for Seaward, Kipsang remains favourite to retain his title. He ran a PB of 30 minutes three seconds last year, one of the fastest ever times over a difficult course.
A strong men’s field also includes Slieve Gullion’s Paddy Hamilton who was runner-up a year ago. Also in the field are North Belfast’s Mark McKinstry – fourth last year – and club mate Andrew Annett who is racing next week in the Commonwealth Half Marathon in Cardiff.
In the ladies event Beechmount’s Gerri Short, who won the Belfast Half earlier this week, plus North Down pair Jessica Craig and Rachel Gibson, are likely to be in the title hunt.