Valencia conqueror Mwangangi back home to hero’s welcome

By: MUNEENI MUTHUSI

John Mwangangi returned to Kairungu village in Kitui County to a hero’s welcome on Saturday.

A home coming party was staged for him after he posted one of the fasted times this season of 2:6.13 a week ago to win the Valencia City Marathon.

Mwangangi, who was running his fifth marathon, won his first city title with a personal best time.

He told villagers at Kairungu where he was born that the Valencia victory was an eye opener for more victories.

Also known as “Road Master”, Mwangangi thrilled villagers who included area MP Bernard Kitungi when he promised to work had to be in the line-up for Rio Summer Olympic games.

HOW IT ALL STARTED

Ironically Mwangangi picked up running with a passion following a punishment in school.

While a Standard Six pupil at Kakongo Primary School a teacher meted out punishment to the whole stream for noise making.

The tough teacher forced them to run round the main school building 12 times, and only the first two finishers would be spared further punishemnt – dig holes around the school for tree planting.

Suffice to say Mwangangi never dug a single hole that day.

“I said I will finish first. During the “punishment” I felt extremely relaxed and so strong and fresh so much so that I lapped everybody on the way. The games teacher was very amused. He told me that if I wanted I could represent Kenya in Athletics” he said.

That year 2011 Mwangangi conquered Eastern province in 3,000m and 5,000m and qualified to run at the Primary School National Athletic games.

SOURCE: DAILY NATION