Juniors Keter, Kibet impress at Kip Keino Classic
World Under-20 1,500m champion Vincent Keter and Noah Kibet were the junior stars that dominated the Absa Kip Keino Classic at the Moi International Sports Centre, Kasarani on Saturday.
Keter claimed the men’s 1,500m after cashing in on the absence of defending champion and training partner and mentor Timothy Cheruiyot.
He graduated to senior ranks in style, clocking 3:35.99 to edge out Moroccan Abdellatif Sadiki to second place in 3:36.63. Ethiopia’s Kasaye Adehena came in third in 3:38.18.
“I think I am have now grown to dine with the kings,” declared Keter. “It feels great to win my first major senior race.”
In the men’s 800m, newly crowned world under-20 bronze medallist Kibet won the race in 1:44.97.
The athlete targeting a place in Team Kenya for the 2022 world championships beat, among others, Olympics silver medallist Ferguson Rotich who came fourth. Collins Kipruto was second while Cornelius Tuwei finished third.
It was a Kenyan sweep in the event with the first five athletes from home.
“I want to see what the new season has in store,but I do want a senior title from one of the many events lined up in 2022,” he offered.
In the women’s 3,000m steeplechase, World Under-20 champion Jackline Chepkoech ((9:33.64) finished third behind winner Celliphine Chespol who timed 8:58.80 ahead of Fancy Cherono (9:27.30).
Chepkoech said she was satisfied with her first steps into the senior ranks after her third place finish at the one-day event.
“I have been suffering from flu in the past few days and was experiencing chest pains. I wasn’t even sure I would be able to compete today so I am grateful for this finish,” Chepkoech said.
The athlete further said she would be competing in the senior races as well as the junior ones since she still meets World Athletics’ age requirements for junior competitions.