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Hellen Obiri won the first meet of the Athletics Kenya Cross Country Series in Machakos on Saturday.

She is the World Athletics Championships 5,000m, gold medallist.

Being in Kenya, and in a cruel and poetic illustration of her strength, she took the lead at approximately 3K from World Athletics 3,000m steeplechase champion and world record holder Beatrice Chepkoech and then win in the time of 32:29.20. Chepkoech dropped out after 5K.

Photo credit: Bjorn Paree

Caroline Nyaga finished in second place in the time of 32:46.8. Steeplechaser, Winfred Mutile of Bahrain, finished third in 32:47.5. She is Kenyan-Bahrainian.

The course was muddy, after a rainy spell. Kenyans who don’t like training in the rain, have no problem racing in it, as well as the mud-soaked surface.

The 31-year-old is also the 2019 Aarhus World Athletics Cross Country Champion. She is the 2017 London and 2019 Doha World Athletics Champion in the 5000m distance. During the 2016 Rio Olympic Games she earned the silver medal in the 5000m. She is a five-time national champion and 16-time Diamond League winner in various distances from 1500m to the 5000m.

She will now prepare for the 2020 Tokyo Olympic Games as the World Athletics Cross Country Championships have been postponed to 2022.