Kenya's golden chance for World Cross Country

Istanbul Marathon champion Gladys Cherono battle out with former World Cross Gold medalist Emily Chebet Muga at Kericho Green Stadium during the women's 10,000M race. Cherono eased to victory after a powerful kick in the last 20Meters beating Muge to second place. PHOTO BU Gilbert Kimutai/standard

After next month's Cardiff Cross Challenge in Wales, UK, the Gold series moves on to Poland and Spain before stops in the USA, Italy, Belgium, Botswana, Kenya and Portugal.

According to the World Athletics, the 2022/2023 World Cross Country Tour (Gold Level) scheduled to run from October 15, 2022, to February 26, 2023, will give Kenya an opportunity to host.

The Cross Country Tour and the Cross Country rankings also form part of the qualification pathway for the 10,000m at future championships.

Starting with the World Athletics Championships Budapest 23, the top eight men and top eight women in the cross country rankings, who are not already qualified via entry standard or world 10,000m ranking, will be automatically qualified.

In the calendar released, Kenya will welcome athletes at the Sirikwa Cross Country Classic in Eldoret on 11 February 2023 - the third last outing of the season.

The Cross Country Tour, which replaced the former Cross Country Permit series, takes athletes' best three marks and converts them into performance scores (as also used by the world rankings system).

The World Cross Country Tour calendar has expanded this season to currently include 17 Gold level meetings as well as five Silver fixtures and one Bronze event.

The series once again features some of the most prestigious international cross-country races in the world and will form a key part in the preparation of many athletes who will be targeting the World Athletics Cross Country Championships Bathurst 23 on 18 February.

The top six at the end of the 2021-2022 season were: Women 1 Rahel Daniel (ERI) 3820 2 Lucy Mawia (KEN) 3780 3 Beatrice Chebet (KEN) 3780 3 Likina Amebaw (ETH) 3780 5 Margaret Chelimo (KEN) 3760 6 Dolshi Tesfu (ERI) 3680 Men 1 Rodrigue Kwizera (BDI) 3840 2 Nibret Melak (ETH) 3780 3 Aron Kifle (ERI) 3760 4 Rogers Kibet (UGA) 3740 5 Thomas Ayeko (UGA) 3720 6 Joel Ayeko (UGA) 3700

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