Ugandan Thomas Ayeko cruised to the finish line to emerge 2015 IAAF Antrim Cross Country Champion on Saturday in Greenmount, Northern Ireland defeating Kenya’s Commonwealth Steeplechase gold medallist Edwin Soi and Jonathan Ndiku.
Ayeko who won Gold in the same in the 10km course in 2013, crossed after 31minutes and 27 seconds to win the accolades while Edwin Soi came in second, 13 seconds later. Jonathan Ndiku reached the tape in 32:25 to settle for third.
Ayeko and Soi drew large a gap between themselves and Ndiku by half distance as Kenyan Gideon Kimosop also chased with Lee Merrien, Andrew Maud and Dean Lacy in the cold conditions, and on a slightly adjusted course from previous years.
The experienced 23-year-old runner stepped up just over 200 metres from the tape. He went further to make a big effort coming home to win by 13 seconds before Edwin Soi whom he lost in the final 100 metres.
Ayeko was pleased with his performance and revealed to IAAF media how delighted he was.
“I am very happy to return to Northern Ireland and win. This is a venue I love coming to and it is an honour to win here again. It was a good field and winning is a great feeling,” he said.
Ayeko who finished 16th in the 2012 Summer Olympics 10,000 metres, should have competed in the World Cross country championships in Guiyang, China in less fortnight’s time according to sources but the athlete did not feature in the selections held in Jinja last month.