Kenyan training partners World 1500m champion Elijah Manangoi and IAAF Diamond League champion Timothy Cheruiyot will take their 1500 metres battle to the Hercules Diamond League race in Monaco on Friday, July 20th.
The two teammates at Rongai Athletics Club, will renew their rivalry at the IAAF Diamond League meeting, the tenth stop in the 14-tier series, saying say they will take no prisoners.
Cheruiyot who was recently promoted at the Kenya Prisons Service for his IAAF Diamond League success last season, his only loss this year was at the Commonwealth Games and he is looking to retain his Diamond League trophy.
In their last outing, Cheruiyot a World 1,500m silver medallist shook off a strong challenge to run away with the mile at the Prefontaine Classic in May by returning 3:49.87 as Manangoi settled for third place in 3:52.18 behind second placed Ethiopia’s Samuel Tefera in 3:51.26.
“I like running in Eugene! Every time I come here, I improve my time,” said an elated Cheruiyot in post race interview. “My goal for the season is to run under 3:28 in Monaco.”
At last year’s IAAF Diamond League meeting in Monaco, the duo set 1,500m personal best times of 3:28.80 for Managoi and Cheruiyot’s 3:29.10 in a 1-2 finish respectively.
“It is a nice rivalry we have with Manangoi. He is strong and helps me bring out my best. Anyone can win the race, but there will be more than just the two of us,” said Cheruiyot.
The Kenyan duo finished first and second respectively at last year’s world championships in London and at the recent Commonwealth Games in Gold Coast with Manangoi emerging victorious on both occasions.
The duo managed to perform a rare feat of a coach to have the gold and silver medalists in the same training group (though Alberto Salazar had it in the 10,000 in 2012) but that was the case in at the 2017 London World championships and 2018 Commonwealth Games in Gold Coast, Australia in the men’s 1500 final , as both Manangoi and Cheruiyot who train under coach Bernard Ouma settled for first and second positions respectively.
“Anyone of us can win the race but its an interestiung rivalry we have with Manangoi. He is strong and helps me bring out my best. ,” said Cheruiyot.