What you need to know:
- Newly crowned La Route du Louvre Half Marathon champion Irene Kimais who has been tasked to pace up to the 25-kilometre mark
- Kimais, who has been training at Kapsabet in Nandi County under 2Running Club, is confident that they will do their job as pacemakers when they line up for the race in one week's time
- She also said that it is a privilege to pace world beaters and will do her best to see the athletes achieve their targets in the race
For the second year in a row, London Marathon organisers are optimistic that the race will be a success despite coronavirus pandemic which has wreaked havoc across the world.
This year's race will be held on October 3 as opposed to the traditional April date due to the pandemic.
Kenyan athletes will be looking forward to a competitive race with the men’s category having last years’ runner-up Vincent Kipchumba, his training mate and Valencia Marathon Champion Evans Chebet and Milano Marathon champion Titus Ekiru.
The women's category consists of world marathon record holder Brigid Kosgei, who is also the defending champion, New York Marathon champion Joyciline Jepkosgei and Frankfurt Marathon champion Valary Jemeli.
The athletes will be aided by a group of pacemakers and Nation Sport caught up with newly crowned La Route du Louvre Half Marathon champion Irene Kimais who has been tasked to pace up to the 25-kilometre mark.
Kimais bagged victory after clocking 67:17, her personal best time in the distance, ahead of her compatriot Judith Korir who timed 67:22 while Ethiopia’s Goytom Teklegzi was third in 67:52.
Kimais, who has been training at Kapsabet in Nandi County under 2Running Club, is confident that they will do their job as pacemakers when they line up for the race in one week's time.
She said that her preparations for the race have been good and has finished her programme as she looks forward to the assignment ahead.
“I was elated when I was tasked to pace the London Marathon athletes and I have done good preparations ahead of the race.
“As a pacemaker one needs to be fast and strong in the first 20km and this is what I have been doing for the last three months and I’m now through with my programme,” said Kimais.
She also said that it is a privilege to pace world beaters and will do her best to see the athletes achieve their targets in the race.
“I know many athletes would like to win while others would love to achieve their personal best time and I will be happy as a pacemaker to see them achieve their targets,” she added.
She started her athletics career at St Agatha Mokwo Girls High School in Elgeyo Marakwet County and decided to pursue it seriously after her ‘O’ level education in 2015.
She was later recruited by Kenya Defence Forces in 2017 and started participating in various global events.
Kimais said that she would be shifting to half marathon races and full marathon races after racing with top athletes who are more experienced than her.
“Pacing will give me more experience in the road races, half marathon and marathon races and this is just the beginning of my career because I’m still participating in the 10,000m races,” she said.
She is among athletes who were affected by coronavirus pandemic after last year's Paris Half Marathon was cancelled on the eve of the race forcing them to return home.
Kimais will team up with her training mates Betty Lempus and Dorcas Tuitoek who will also be pacing the first group of athletes.