Ethiopian long distance Runners have been able to break the dominance of Kenyan runners by perfecting the final kick.
I have watched races where Kenyan runners keep up pace with their Ethiopian rivals in races, only to be dismayed to see Kenyan runners lose out in the final lap due to poor finishing tactics.
Coach Julius Kirwa, the Kenyan cross-country coach is well aware of the problem as the Kenyan Cross Country team prepares for World Cross Country Championships in Edinburgh Scotland. “This is important because, we need to sharpen up on our speed, Despite dominating up to the last lap, our opponents always strike it late, leaving us gasping for breath in pursuit. This time round it has to be done right” he told a local Kenyan daily.
Tips for a Succefull Final Kick
The Kenyan runners have been focusing on speed training in an attempt to develop speed endurance.
To make a successful final kick an athlete needs to be running at 75% of his running ability so that, come the last lap he has spare energy to sprint to the finish.
Your training pace has to be higher than your race pace.
Kenenisa Bekele Secret Weapon
Kenenisa Bekele has been so successful at executing this final kick because if you look at the man in a race you can see how he runs effortlessly (below his full running potential) while his kenyan rivals and one Australian, Mottram, run at full running potential. Come the final lap he has saved enough energy to dash to the finish.