NAIROBI (Xinhua) --
Kenya’s former world youth 3000m champion
Veronica Nyaruai is taking a leap in faith as she transcends to
marathon with her debut set for this weekend in Houston.
Nyaruai, 28, wants
to make history to become the first Kenyan woman to win in
confirmed her credentials last year, when she triumphed over the
21km distance in the Houston half marathon. But she knows the
challenge ahead is tough as she graduates to full marathon.
“Records are meant
to be broken. I intend to make my debut in marathon and believe
it will go well and hopefully end up the winner,” she said on
Last year, the
Kenyan woman clocked 67:58 to win the half marathon missing the
course record, which is held by compatriot Mary Wacera at 66:29.
Wacera set the course record in 2016.
“I must focus on my
strength and believe I have what it takes to win any race. I
must gain a podium finish in my debut race. It will inspire me
as I take this new challenge of competing in marathon,” said
“Everyone has a
first time. Mine will be in Houston, where I believe I have an
advantage because I have raced on that course before. My
training has been good and the hard work put in it will bear
assembled an impressive elite field complete with 10 past
champions and new up-and-coming challengers who are certain to
push the boundaries of competition.
Nyaruai will have to
battle against top Ethiopian challenge to stamp her foot and
become the first Kenyan to win in Boston. She will face
Biruktayit Degefa, the 2016 Houston Marathon champion, who is
back after her runner-up finish in 2017.
There is also
Abebech Afework Bekelewho won in 2014 and returns for the first
time since her victory while Mamitu Daska, the 2011 winner, will
look to contest the crown.
Ondoro returns to defend his title, while Bazu Worku (Ethiopia),
2013 and 2014 champion, hopes to challenge Ondoro and the rest
of the proven men’s field.
Other Kenyans in the
field include Milton Kiplagat Rotich, Elisha Barno, Isaac Korir
and Nelson Oyugi. Kenya’s Joshua Kipkorir has dropped out citing