Australian long-distance track and road runner Patrick Tiernan has revealed he is excited ahead of the 2017 Kampala World Cross Country Championships on Sunday at Kololo Independence Grounds.
The star, also – the 2016 Men’s DI National Cross Country champion – can’t wait to stick his spikes in terrain of the cross country fields that hosted the Africa Championships in 2014.
Tiernan – born in Longreach and raised in Toowoomba, where he took up distance running – has never has a trip to Africa and Sunday will be his first race on the continent.
“I’ve never been to Africa, so it’s my first experience. It’s pretty exciting! I like the concept that you get to go to a place you’d normally never really be going to for anything else I guess,” he told spikes.iaaf.org.
“But I’m excited to learn a bit about the culture and see what they’ve got on offer.”
Tiernan capped off his collegiate career with an upset victory at the NCAA Cross Country Championships last November and he remains confident he’s going to surprise a couple of faces.
“I think we can surprise a few people. I would say – I don’t know what the other guys are thinking – but I would definitely compete for a top six, top five spot [with the team], if we had our day,” he added.
“It’s an exciting, younger team for us – a lot of guys who are doing pretty well at the moment.”
Kampala will be the fourth African city in the history of the IAAF World Cross Championships to host the tournament.