Elite Athletes field of TCS World 10K Bangalore 2012
Kimetto, Mare Dibaba lead super fast field for TCS World 10K Bangalore
The course record of 27.51, set by Eritrean Zersenay Tadese in 2008, will definitely be under threat on Sunday, May 27, when a super fast field of elite athletes, led by the Kenyan sensation of this season, Dennis Koech Kimetto, takes the starter's flag for the Tata Consultancy Services World 10K Bangalore, 2012, according to a release received from event promoters Procam International, here, on Friday.
The elite field of international athletes, with 12 athletes having sub-28 minute personal bests, will see a mixture of previous podium placers, World, Commonwealth and Olympic medalists and, as usual, a clutch of up and coming hot new talents from East Africa, the headliner of these undoubtedly being Kimetto.
Kimetto burst into the spotlight in February this year, upstaging many bigger and more experienced names, including his mentor and training partner Geoffrey Mutai when winning the Ras-al-Khaima half marathon in a time of 59.14. He followed this up with a strong sub-60 minute performance when winning the Berlin Half Marathon and then just last weekend eclipsed the 25km World record, again in Berlin, clocking 1 hour, 11 minutes to take 32 seconds off the previous best. Kimetto has raced outside of Kenya just three times and has won on each occasion, beating World class fields.
He will have to be at his best, however, in Bangalore as he will face former winner Deriba Merga of Ethiopia, who revels in Indian conditions, and his country mate Dino Sefir, who earlier in the year ran a blistering 2-04 marathon when finishing 2nd in the Dubai Marathon, and in the process booked his ticket to London 2012. The field will also have last year's runner-up Leonard Langat of Kenya, who has a personal best of 27.50, besides evergreen Ugandan Moses Kipsiro, who will be no pushover, having finished on the podium in Bangalore for two years in the past. Kipsiro has won medals in World and Commonwealth Games and is in preparation also for the London Olympics. Also in the fray is Kenyan Geoffrey Kipsang, World Junior Cross Country champion, who burst onto the road race scene in the Delhi Half in 2011, where he narrowly missed out to Ethiopian Lelisa Desisa. He has since improved his credentials and will be surely looking to win on this visit to India.
The ladies race is no less star-studded. Mare Dibaba of Ethiopia has been a regular visitor to India over the last three years and during that time has become one of the world's most feared road racers, running a stunning 2-19 marathon in January to book her place in London. Her compatriot Merima Mohammed has the habit of running well in India, having been runner-up in Mumbai, Delhi and Bangalore, and she for sure will be looking to go one better. Also posing a stiff challenge will be Ethiopian Aselefech Mergia, a multiple winner in India. Kenya's elegant past winner Grace Momanyi, who was involved in a dead heat, will be out to prove a point as she pursues her Olympic ambitions with a confidence building performance in Bangalore.
Some of the other big names in the women's field are Nambian Helalia Johannes, Ethiopian teenager Fatuma Sado and countrywoman Merima Mohammed, besides Kenyan Philes Ongori, winner of the Berlin Half Marathon 2012.