Kirwa out to shatter two Paraympics records
Beijing 2008 triple-Paralympics champion, Henry Kirwa, is eyeing to break two world records in the 1500m and 5000m in the T13 Category at the Rio 2016 Summer Games next month.
Kirwa, who was named the 2009 United Nations Person of the Year, UNDP Judicial Ambassador and a Millennium Development Goals Advocate for Africa, set world records in 1500m, 5000m and 10000m at the Beijing Olympics.
He has ditched the longest distance for Rio to focus on breaking his own standards in Rio after failing to hit the heights at London 2012.
“During the Africa championships in Tunisia and Morocco, we managed to learn some of the tactics our major competitors use and we are working on overcoming them,” the men 1500m bronze winner in London said.
Team Kenya’s Paralympics track and field coach, Ruth Chumo, tipped the side to bring more than the six medals they won in London –two gold, two silver and two bronze- when they travel to Brazil.
The squad will train for a month and depart for Rio two weeks before the start of the Paralympics as opposed to the ten-day build-up they had for London.
“The Kenya National Paralympics Committee will sponsor our training for the first half and Government takes over the rest,” Chumo told Citizen Digital on Wednesday in Ngong Forest.
Abraham Tarbei (1,500m, T46) and Samuel Muchai (1500m, T11) won the gold medals, the former in a 3:50.15.
Nancy Chelang’at Koech who took the women’s 200m T11 gold during the May qualifiers in Morocco is also keen on landing a Paralympics title.
“I have been working hard in my training and believe God will fulfil my dream,” the 20 year-old assert.
The Paralympians are scheduled to travel between September 5 and18 with Kenya represented by 26 track and field athletes, a power lifter and a para rower.
RIO 2016 PARALYMPICS TEAM
Track and Field
Samuel Muchai Kimani T11 1500m and 5000m, Wilson Bii T11 1500m ,5000m, Benard Koskei Kipng’etichT12 5000m and 1500m, Henry Kiprono Kirwa T12 1500m and 5000m, Henry Nzungi Muendo T12 400m and 200m , Erick Kiptoo Sang T11 1500m and 5000m, Mary Waithera Njoroge T11 1500m, Wesley Sang Kimeli T46 1500m and 400m, Stanley Misik Kipkoech T46 1500m, Nancy Chelan’gat Koech T11 1500m and 200m, Jonathan Sum Kipchumba T37 1500m , Hanah Ngendo Mwangi T12 200m and 400m, Gilbert Lagat Kiprugut T12 400m,Sylvia Olero Atieno F44 Discus throw, James Onyinkwa Mangerere F57 Javelin throw.
Gabriel Magu Wanjiku Power Lifting (59kg), Itaken Timoi Kipelian AS Men’s Single Sculls, Para-rowing.
Competition partners/ Guide runners: James Kipkemboi Boit, Benard Kipkoech Korir , Benard Kipkurui Terer, Joseph Erang Rotina, Geoffrey Kiplagat Rotich, Tom Charito Sande