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Report for Junior races
Sean Wallace-Jones reports from Turin

Victory take two for Kenya.

Elijah KorirIn an amazing display of speed the barefoot Elijah Korir led Kenya to victory in the junior men’s event. With five Kenyan athletes in the first six places - Ethiopian Million Wolde succeeded in breaking through the Kenyan ranks to take silver - the race was dominated from start to finish by the black and green shirts of the Kenyan team.

The strength of the Kenyans belied the rigours of the course which, despite the beautiful surroundings of the Parco del Valentino in Turin was a demanding trial for these young athletes (a 250 metre 11 degree grade following the home straight). With the sun taking a rest behind light cloud cover the high temperatures of the previous days gave way to a cool breeze and an ambient temperature around 10 degrees Centigrade.

Korir hung back and followed the lead of compatriot Paul Kosgei for the first six kilometres of the race, with Wolde taking the lead around the 7 km mark before dropping behind Korir who finished in a final sprint: running the last kilometre in an amazing 2:42!

Intermediate times: 2:45 (Kosgei); 5:32 (Kosgei); 8:22 (Kosgei); 11:08 (Kosgei) 14:01 (Kosgei); 16:51 (Kosgei); 19:47 (Wolde); 22:29 (Korir).

Kosgei took bronze behind Wolde’s silver and Korir’s gold. Fourth John Gwako (KEN), fifth Charles Kwambai (KEN), sixth Patrick Ivuti (KEN), seventh Alene Emre (ETH), Godfrey Nyombi (UGA) eighth, Gideon Mitei (KEN) ninth, Yibeltal Admasu (ETH) tenth, Ali Ezzine (MAR) eleventh.

Kenya heads the Junior Field once again

In ideal conditions in the Parco del Valentino in Turin, in front of what is probably one of the largest crowds to have been seen at a World Cross Country Championships in recent years, the Kenyans once again proved their absolute control of this event.Rose Koskei Caroline Tarus of Kenya took the lead at the start and led the pack for the first two kilometres closely followed by her compatriot Rose Koskei. The first kilometre fell in a fast 3:05 and this pace was maintained throughout the race with the subsequent intermediate times of 6:13 (Tarus) 9:27 (Worku) 12:37 (Koskei).Ayelech Worku of Ethiopia ran a good race but, despite a break through into the lead shortly after the 2 kilometres mark only managed to hold the lead for a few hundred metres before dropping back behind the two Kenyans with Rose Koskei kicking strongly and taking back the lead to finish in a fast 14:58, closely followed by Prisca Jepleting (KEN) with 14:59 and Worku in 15:02.

Edna Kiplagat (KEN) took fourth place eight seconds behind Worku, Zenebech Tadese (ETH) in 15:11, followed by Japanese athletes Kei Satomura and Emiko Kojima. The initial leader Caroline Tarus had to settle for eighth position behind the two Japanese. Ninth and tenth places were once again taken by Kenya with Jepchumba Kiptum and Agnes Kiprop and Risa Tanaka of Japan came in eleventh.

The team gold went to Kenya, with Japan taking a surprise silver and Ethiopia the bronze.



Reports from the Championships

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Copyright 1997 IAAF International Amateur Athletic Federation. All rights reserved.
All photographs 1997 Allsport.