ZIMBABWEAN long distance runner Cephas Pasipamire, who jetted into the country this week, said he was delighted after securing a personal best time on his way to finishing fifth at the Mangyongdae Prize International Marathon in the North Korean capital Pyongyang recently.
BY KENNETH NYANGANI
Pasipamire’s time of 2hr 14min 07sec in the IAAF Bronze Label Road Race was the A standard time for qualification to the IAAF World Championships to be held in Beijing, China next year in August.
His previous personal record was a B standard time of 2hrs 16min 14sec that he also recorded in the same country in 2012.
This is not the first time the athlete has qualified for the World Championships.
Last year, he was the only long distance runner to qualify for the global showpiece in Russia, but suffered a calf injury three days prior to the championships, forcing him to withdraw bi-annual competition.
Pasipamire told NewsDay Sport soon after his arrival in the country on Monday that he was happy with his early qualification as it gives him more than a year to prepare for the World Championships.
“It was a long journey, but l am happy that I arrived well. I came fifth and the major thing is that I recorded my personal best time of 2hrs 14min 07sec which meant I qualified for the World Championships that will be held in Beijing, China next year in August,” he said.
“I was number two in Africa at the race. The race is also used to qualify for the Commonwealth games, but Zimbabwe does not participate in the games. Last year I was disappointed after l failed to participate at Championships on the eleventh hour because of an injury and l was already in Russia,” he said.
“Next year I am hoping that my dream of participating at the games will finally come true, because if I manage to be in the top-20, then I will qualify for the Olympics games the following year,” added Pasipamire.