Kenya’s Komon, world record holder, returns for Berlin race

posted in: Africa

Leonard Komon – Photo: Losseveter


Nairobi, Kenya – The 10-km world record holder Leonard Komon of Kenya will be among the world-class field that will converge for the ASICS Grand 10 race in Berlin on Sunday, the organisers said.

Another Kenyan, Joyce Chepkirui, is the women’s favourite, and her aim is to significantly improve the course record at the sixth edition of the race, which is coming just two weeks after the Berlin Marathon produced a world record.

At 26 minutes and 44 seconds, Komon also holds the course record of the ASICS Grand 10.

The Kenyan won the race in 2010, 2011 and 2012, and he is now targeting victory number four at what obviously is his favourite 10-km race.

But the 25 year-old will face tough opposition on Sunday. Among Komon’s rivals there is the fastest 10-km runner of the year, Adugna Takele of Ethiopia, who clocked 27:30 in Taroudant (Morocco) this March.

Two more Kenyans, who feature personal bests of sub 28 minutes, are also expected to provide Komon with tough opposition. They are Titus Mbishei, who has a Personal Best of 27:32, and Richard Mengich, who has achieved 27:56 so far.

According to the online Race News Service, in contrast to the men’s time, the women’s course record of the ASICS Grand 10 has not yet reached world-class standard.

Mara Yamauchi (Great Britain) holds this mark with 32:19 from 2011.

But with Chepkirui on the starting line on Sunday, it looks like the record could be significantly improved.

The 25-year-old Kenyan is the sixth fastest 10-km runner ever. In 2011 she clocked 30:38 minutes in Tilburg (Netherlands).

Chepkirui’s strongest rival at the ASICS Grand 10 should come from Ethiopia: Tadelech Bekele has a Personal Best of 33:12.

Overall, 7,000 participants will feature in the race