So much happening for Kenyan athletes in the happy, exciting and prosperous New Year, 2016, a view from Kenya, by Justin Lagat


Bett_NicholasQ-World15.jpgNicholas Bett, photo by

Nicholas Bett's win in Beijing was pretty old school. Nicholas jogged from the hotel to the stadium, about 2k, for his warm up. His self control in the race was mesmerizing, as he took the lead and took the victory!

How will Kenya do in 2016? Here is how Justin Lagat puts their chances. With an enhanced anti-doping program, I think that we will see many Kenyan athletes doing well, and the stench of doping accusations lessening in the great country.

So much happening for Kenyan athletes in the happy, exciting and prosperous New Year, 2016, A view from Kenya, by Justin Lagat
It seems many track and field events will happen earlier than usual next year here in Kenya and that there will be a lot of these events taking place as well. In March alone, there will be the IAAF world indoor championships in Portland, Oregon; the IAAF world half marathon championships in Cardiff, Great Britain and the African cross country championships in Yaounde, Cameroon.
Later on in the year, there will also be the African Athletic Championships, the IAAF world junior championships, the IAAF world junior championships and the Olympic Games.
Besides, there will also be the usual IAAF world challenge meetings, the IAAF Diamond league races, the world major city marathons, the IAAF cross country permit races and the IAAF indoor meetings, among others.
Looking at the calendar of events in Kenya, the local meetings have been adjusted to start quite early in the year with the first and second Athletics Kenya (AK) meetings taking place in February; 19th in Bondo and 26th in Mumias respectively. Usually, track meetings would start in March after all the cross country meetings are done. This time round, the athletes will have to make a decision on whether to concentrate on the cross country or the track races.
In about two months' time after the first AK track meeting happens, national championships and trials for the African Athletic Championships will be held on 26th of May in Nairobi. The African Athletic Championships will then take place from 22nd to 26th June in Durban, South Africa.
I have no idea how AK will arrange this, but the Olympic trials are set to happen on 29th June which means that the athletes who would have represented the country in South Africa will just have two days to recover as they travel back into the country for the trials.
The big and much awaited event of the year will happen from 5th to 21stAugust, the Rio Olympic Games. Will another Kenyan come up with another surprise like Nicholas Bett did in the 400m hurdles? Will Kenyans finally get to beat Mo Farah in the 10,000m and the 5000m events? Will David Rudisha repeat what he did in London 2012? Will Asbel Kiprop find a stronger challenger in the 1500m? Will Eliud Kipchoge win the Rio Olympic marathon title?
As we look forward to all these events coming up, I take this chance to wish all the athletes, athletic fans, coaches, athletic agents and sports journalists, everywhere in the world, a happy and a prosperous 2016.

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