Kass Marathon organisers have replaced the 10km race with half marathon ahead of this year’s race set for November 17 in Eldoret.
Kass Media chief executive officer, Julius Lemaon, said they were forced to do so to attract more athletes to the event including those featuring in subsequent big city races.
He said they have received many requests from marathoners to phase out the 10km and introduce half marathon to cater for those athletes who can’t compete in 42km.
“The athletes had requested us to introduce the 21km race to enable them to use it as a build-up for the marathon season,” he said.
“There was great demand by athletes who compete in the marathon to introduce half marathon as this will help them prepare for other international races,” he said.
Lamaon said the race has always served as a build-up to prepare for subsequent international races.
“As organisers, we will begin mapping out the 21km route. The course must go through the same certification process as the marathon. Our request, however, is to have the 10km within the town,” he added.
Lemaon was speaking during a ceremony, where he dished out over Sh7 million to winners of last year’s event. Despite doping cases being prevalent in Kenya, Lemaon said it is good they haven’t reported any doping incident in their races for the last 10 years.
“The fact that our event has been doping-free for the last 10 years leaves no doubt that some effort is being directed towards sensitising the youths in doping issues. We will continue to abide by the doping rules going forward,” he added.
Former world cross country junior bronze medalist Cynthia Jerop and Jackson Kemboi won the 13th edition of the annual race that cuts across Nandi and Uasin Gishu counties, earning themselves Sh1.5 million each.
Cherop led Beatrice Chepkorir and Peres Jepchirchir to the podium in the women’s race while Silas Mwetich and Dennis Kiptoo trailed Kemboi in the men’s event.