Newly-crowned national 100m record holder Mike Mokamba is relishing the chance of being among the Kenyan contingent to the IAAF World Championships set for Beijing next month.
Mokamba, 20, lowered Tom Musinde’s 10.26 to set a new national record of 10.23, during the national championships and believes he can still do better and qualify for Beijing.
“I feel great to be the national champion and I am certain with hard work I can lower it further,” said Mokamba. Mokamba, son to a former international sprinter Elkana Nyangau, added: “Sprints is all about exposure and the little time I have trained and run in Europe has made the difference.”
“Running now and then helps in building an athlete’s confidence and offers a chance for one to rectify his mistakes.”
“I have had some races in Europe and training there is fantastic considering one has facilities at his disposal unlike here at home,” he added. “The challenge goes to the federation (Athletics Kenya) to try and get us some races and training abroad.”
“Some of our best sprinters including Anderson Mureta and Calvin Nkanata have done well abroad. I want to work hard and qualify for 100m and 200m,” added Mokamba.
Unlike in the past, where the IAAF have been offering a category ‘B’ qualifying standard, Beijing offers only one mark with 100m set at 10.16 and the 200m at 20.50 for the men. Mokamba is, apparently the unofficial Kenyan fastest 200m runner at 20.50 but the time was not recognised since it was hand-timed, which is against the IAAF regulations. Mokamba’s training mate Alphas Kishoyian, who clocked a personal best of 44.75 during the national championships is also gearing for the Worlds. “My time of 44.75 is well within the required standards but I still want to do better ahead of Beijing,” said Kishoyian, a silver medalist from the 2011 Commonwealth Youth Games. His time is rated as 15th fastest in the world and this gives him hopes that Beijing could be a revelation.