Olympic 5000 metres silver medallist, Eliud Kipchoge, will make a fifth appearance at the Bupa Great Edinburgh Cross Country in the New Year. Kipchoge, the first ever winner of what is acknowledged as the top meeting in the International Association of Athletics Federations’ (IAAF) calendar of permit events, will compete in a revamped competition at Holyrood Park on January 8 2011.
The men's 9km international race, which Kipchoge won in 2005 and has finished third on a further two occasions, has been reduced to four km as the Bupa Great Edinburgh Cross Country adopts a new format for 2011.
The Bupa Great Edinburgh Cross Country includes three cross country events; the men’s 4 km and women’s 6 km invitation-only events – which will be contested by the world’s best male and female athletes respectively – and the Men’s International Team Challenge which is 8 km.
The Men’s International Team Challenge will see Great Britain and Northern Ireland Senior Men and Great Britain and Northern Ireland U23 & U20 Men take on the United States and a European Select team over 8 kilometres.
The quality of overseas runners, which has seen Olympic and world champions such as Kenenisa Bekele and Tirunesh Dibaba star in previous years, will be maintained, with big signings to be announced shortly.
Entry into Holyrood Park is free for spectators and organisers are encouraging the public to take advantage of the opportunity to see the world’s best athletes compete, as well as the cream of young Scottish athletes on show within the main events and the Scottish Inter District Championships.
The Bupa Great Edinburgh Cross Country completes an exciting day of running in Holyrood Park, which starts as hundreds of youngsters take part in the 2.5km Bupa Junior Great Winter Run followed by thousands runners of all abilities taking on the 5km Bupa Great Winter Run.
Both events are part of the Bupa Great Run series, organised by Nova International, also organisers of the Bupa Great North Run and the Bupa Great Edinburgh Run.
Entries for the Bupa Great Winter Run and the Bupa Junior Great Winter Run are still open at www.greatrun.org.