Kericho, Kenya – The Kenya National Paralympic Committee (KNPC) commenced the national trials for para-athletics, targeting the East Africa Community Games, at the Kiprugut Chumo Stadium in Kericho County. The trials, which began on Thursday, saw the participation of over 300 athletes from across the country.
According to Kenya News Agency, the two-day event aimed to select teams for various international competitions, starting with the East Africa Community Games scheduled to be held in Kigali, Rwanda, later this month. KNPC President Mr. Ronald Milare, speaking at the media briefing during the official opening, announced another series of national trials to be held in January next year. These trials are for the selection of teams for the Dubai World Championships Grand Prix in February 2024 and the Tunis Grand Prix in March 2024.
Athletes from 10 Counties, including Nairobi, Kericho, Bomet, Uasin Gishu, Narok, West Pokot, Nandi, Machakos, Kakamega, and Makueni, are participating in events ranging from 100 meters to 5,000 meters in track, and field events like discus, javelin, shot-put, and long jump. The trials also serve as classification trials to categorize new athletes.
Mr. Milare expressed concerns over the challenges posed by the stadium still under construction, lacking facilities like the tartan track, but assured that safety measures are in place for the participants.
Kericho County Secretary Dr. Wesly Bor, present at the event, extended his best wishes to the para-athletes, expressing confidence in their ability to represent Kenya admirably in upcoming international competitions. Also in attendance were County Chief Officer for ICT, E-Government, Gender, Youth Affairs, and Sports, Mr. Geoffrey Bett, Chief of Staff, Mr. Edgar Towett, Director for Sports, Mr. Charles Ngerechi, and other top officials from the government and Athletics Kenya.