Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Cheruiyot: I'll Target Baldini

Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Cheruiyot: I'll Target Baldini

Article excerpt

Byline: Mark Douglas

KENYAN prospect Robert Kiprono Cheruiyot has promised to run former Olympic champion Stefano Baldini all the way in tomorrow's highquality Great North 10k in Sunderland. Reigning Boston Marathon champion Cheruiyot has established himself as one of distance running's brightest prospects since bursting onto the scene in 2008 and is one of a clutch of international athletes taking aim at European marathon champion Baldini over the Wearside course. And in a rare 10k outing, the 21-year-old Kenyan believes a sub-30 minute time on a quick course is possible - despite nursing a slight tendon injury.

Baldini jetted into the North East late last night and organisers consider it quite a coup to get a man who is something of an icon in long-distance running. But, as with most of the Great North Run series, he is guaranteed a decent workout.

"I am delighted to be in Sunderland - this is my first time in England but it is a very good race; I'm excited," said Cheruiyot, who was at Biddick School Sports College yesterday to put youngsters taking part in tomorrow's Junior Great Sunderland Run through their paces.

"I didn't know too much about the field but it is strong with Stefano, who has won an Olympics. I have to run my own race but I will be aiming for around 30 minutes if the conditions are right, and hopefully that will be enough. My main aim this year is to go back to Boston and defend the title. But this is important for speed work and it is an excellent event."

Baldini and Cheruiyot are the top names in a men's elite field that includes Switzerland''s Viktor Rothlin, a former bronze medallist at the World marathon championships, and Portugal's Luis Feiteira. Regional interest is provided by former Blaydon Race winners Ian Hudspith, of Morpeth Harriers, and Ezekial Cherop. …

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