Justin Lagat did this interview of Mary Keitany today, September 6, prior to her flight to Newcastle, England for the Great North Run, one of @runblogrun’s favorite events.
Here is Justin’s note to me on the story: “ I did a short interview with Mary Keitany today, and already sent to you. She is an amazing lady, told me that she has been following my writing and thinks I am one special journalist given that I run faster than any journalist she knows. ”
We thank Justin for the speed of his effort today and also for his views from Kenya!
Mary Keitany is well prepared, but expects tough competition on Sunday’s Great North Run:
If there is one race one should never afford to miss this weekend, it should be the women’s half marathon race at the Great North Run event. With three days remaining to one of the world’s biggest half marathons, Mary Keitany says she is ready for it.
“My training for this race is already done. All has gone well. What now remains is for me to travel and wait for the race,” Keitany told RunBlogRun in Eldoret as she made last preparations to travel.
The women’s only world record holder over the marathon distance sounded confident with her training ahead of the Sunday race and preferred to talk more about her preparations and not delve much on her competitors.
“I know that my competitors have also been doing their training well, but I do not want to speak about and focus on others. All I can say is that my own training has gone very well and I feel ready to run very well on Sunday,” she said.
Perhaps, when Keitany says she is ready to run well, it is worth noting what she has been able to achieve so far, whenever she ran well on the roads, to fully understand what she means. Besides running the marathon’s world record in April, Keitany has had an impressive career on the roads that include running the former half marathon world record of 1:05:50 and holding other world records at 10 miles (50:05 minutes), 20 kilometres (1:02:36), and 25 kilometres (1:19:53).
Although she did not want to focus more on her competitors, Keitany added that with the presence of the defending champion, Vivian Cheruiyot, and Caroline Kipkirui, the race will definitely be very tough and competitive.
Being the Laureus Sportswoman of the Year in 2011, the extraordinary Cheruiyot is another one of the world’s greatest women in long distance running with Olympic, World, Continental, Commonwealth, IAAF Diamond League and African championship titles in the women’s 10,000m and 5,000m track events and in the cross country competitions. She is currently transitioning to the roads, and what an opportunity for her to prove that she is ready to take her supremacy to the roads than to battle with Keitany, the queen of the roads, on Sunday. It promises to be an epic battle.
Adding to the ingredients of an already mouth-watering race will be the presence of Caroline Kipkirui on the start line. Kipkirui is the lady who paced Keitany to the women’s marathon world record in London this year. She has been having a great season recently finishing second behind Hellen Obiri on the final 5000m race of the IAAF Diamond League season in Brussels.
The 2016 Great Scottish Run winner, Betsy Saina will also be in the mix of such an exciting race on Sunday, besides other notable competitors.