Teenager Emmanuel Bett upset a battery of elite runners to win the men’s category of the Safaricom Gucha 10km road race in Kisii County on Friday.
The 18-year-old, who runs for Golaso Club in Sotik, broke from the leading pack that included two times World Cross Country Junior champion Philip Mosima and Gusii Golden Series defending champion Edwin Mokua with two kilometres remaining to cross the tape in 29:53.12.
Chebelbelek based Nicholas Kipkemoi came second in 30:01.18 and was closely followed by Leonard Langat (Teget club), who clocked 30:06.82. Nyanturago’s Emmanuel Ngatuny finished fourth 30:11.28 minutes.
Mosima finished in the eleventh position while Mokua came in seventh after suffering a setback after developing a stitch with four kilometres to go.
An elated Bett described the race as good saying the competition was stiff but was glad to win.
“This was my first time in Kisii and the weather was cool. The course was challenging but thankfully I came on top. I intend to take part in cross country races when the season starts,” said Bett.
Pre-race favourite Mosima, who is without a manager, attributed his poor showing to lack of adequate practice and rest after winning the Sameta 10km road race last week.
In the women’s category, 2011 Boston Marathon champion Caroline Kilel, 28, proved too good for local runners clocking 35:09.45 to win the race.
Nyanturago’s Jane Moraa followed in second place clocking 35:41.45 while her teammate Damaris Areba was third credited with a time of 35:53.18. Prison’s Alice Mogire came in fourth stopping the clock at 36:43.87.
Jane Onyangi was named the most improved athlete in the Gusii Golden Series while Stephen Oyaro was the oldest finisher. Retired Olympian Nyantika Mayioro attended the race.
Kilel said she was using the race for speed work in preparation for the New Delhi half Marathon at the end of the month.
“The course was tough but the weather was fine. Competition from local runners was stiff but I am using this race as part of my training in readiness for races in India and Holland,” said Kilel.