Kenya's Wilson Kipsang targets Beijing world marathon title
Nairobi, March 25 (IANS)
New York and London marathon champion Wilson Kipsang is hopeful that his performance on return to London in April will convince selectors to name him in the Kenyan team to the Beijing World Championships in August. Kipsang, 33, is aware this might be his only chance to win the world title and has planned his training to fit with the championships, which will be held in Beijing in August, reports Xinhua.
"I really want to compete at the World Championships. That is my target, but again, it is not my choice on who will make the team and all I have to do is run well in London," he said.
Kipsang, the Olympic bronze medallist, is on the wrong books with Athletics Kenya, over his stand on doping and has been vocal calling for more action and penalties to be melted out to the offenders.
He supports the four-year ban which has been adopted by the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA).
"At the moment we are sensitising the athletes about doping and what drugs to skip in their career as athletes. More need to be done, but it is not our responsibility to curb the vice," he said.
In the last two years, about 38 Kenyans have been caught doping, which is double the number of athletes nabbed by WADA in the last decade from the East African country.
But that will not hinder Kipsang from putting his focus on retaining the London Marathon title on April 26.
"The target is to run faster and set a new course record. For me, I could try to go for it in London. It is a very nice course.
Looking at the athletes who have been invited this time, if the weather is ok and if the guys are really ready to go for a fast time, it's possible to set a new world record on the London course, " he said.
"My target is to set a new course record and hope that it will be enough to compel the Kenyan selectors to pick me in the team to the World Championships in Beijing," said Kipsang in Eldoret.
Kipsang is the only man in history to win at London, Berlin and New York City. He is a two-time winner of the London Marathon setting a course record of 2:04:29 in 2014.