NICHOLAS Romany and Aniqah Bailey were crowned the Kiss 5K champions when the TT International Marathon Festival of Events began at the Queen’s Park Savannah in Port of Spain, on Saturday.
Romany won the overall and men’s title in 15 minutes and 49 seconds (15:49.8), finishing just ahead of his training mate Sherwyn Stapleton, who clocked 15:50.3. George Smith was a distant third in 16:49.3.
Among the women, 11-year-old Aniqua Bailey continued her dominance in local 5K events with victory in 20:19.7, ending just ahead of Jizzel Matas (13 years old) in 20:31.7. Teresa Otero rounded off the top three in the women’s category in 20:48.2.
After the victory, Romany said, “I feel good about the win, but I am not too happy with the time because we expected to run a lot faster...we wanted to hit 14:40 something or 14:50 something but I end up running 15:40 something.”
Romany said he did not do enough training leading up to the race because of other events. “We raced last week as well and we taper down again this week, so we did not get much training so I feel that was the problem. The training we do, it was saying that we could run at least 14:40 something to 14:50.”
Romany and Stapleton will represent TT at the Cross Country Championships in Canada. “Right now I just focussing on cross country in Canada because both of us on the team. We are going Canada next month on the 29th for the Cross Country Championships Finals in Canada.”
Bailey, a student of Diego Martin Government Primary School, represented One-a-week Running Club. After press time, the marathon relay took place also around the Queen’s Park Savannah. Each team included five members with each person running one lap of the savannah.
On Sunday, the TT International Marathon will start at Freeport at 5 am and end at Whitehall at the Queen’s Park Savannah.