Laban Mutai Keen To Assault His Next Assignment

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– Laban Mutai aims for World Marathon Majors

– Returns after five-year injury layoff

– Finished third in Ottawa Marathon

– Seeking new management after being dropped

– Targets October marathon for improvement

Former Eindhoven Marathon champion Laban Mutai is keen to improve his time in his next assignment as he seeks to break into World Marathon Majors events.

Mutai finished third in the Ottawa Marathon on last Sunday following a five-year lay-off due to a hamstring injury.

The Ethiopian pair of Lencho Tesfaye Anbesa (2:12.41) and Adamu Getahun 2:13.29 took the top two positions.

Another Ethiopian duo Maregu Hayelonn (2:32.20) and Tinebeb Nebiyu (2:41.40) also ran away with the women’s top two positions with Canadian Caroline Legavre third in 2:47.09.

He won his first marathon race in 2019 in Eindhoven after clocking his current personal best of 2:06.40.

“It has been a very long time since I competed in a major race and running in the Ottawa Marathon, where I finished third was a huge relief,” Mutai said

Dropped By Management

He said after picking up the injury, he was off-loaded by his management team and now operates as an independent athlete.

“Currently, I manage myself but I am looking for one. I want to run well to attract a new manager. I want to improve my personal best of 2:06 by October. There are many advantages when you have a manager,” he said.

As part of his preparations, he seeks to compete in another marathon in October this year and gain the much-needed time.

“I want to compete well in one of the big marathons to improve my time,” he said.

About Laban Mutai

Two-time marathon winner Laban Mutai is a reliable and former highly valued member of the NN Running Team..

Family Affair

Born in Nandi County – the same area which spawned Olympic marathon champion and NN Running team-mate Eliud Kipchoge – Laban grew up on a farm the 17th eldest of 20 siblings! Life was naturally a challenge.

The Dream Factory

As a youngster, Laban hoped one day to become a runner. “I watched people training and when I watched clips of the Diamond League and cross country races on TV, I wanted to be like them,” he says. He started running aged 16 at primary school and he proved a natural instantly winning on the track and cross country.

It Was Mentor Be

After many years plugging away gamely at running, Laban earned his breakthrough performance when winning a half-marathon in Rwanda in a course record time. Shortly after he formerly joined the Global Sports Communications camp in Kaptagat and so began his rise in the sport. On his marathon debut in 2012 he ran 2:08:01 for fourth in Cologne – a time which still stands as his personal best today.

During the camp, he also first came in direct contact with Eliud Kipchoge – a man he has looked up and admired for many years. “He’s a very good mentor and inspires people,” he says. ”I admire how he runs. He has a gift. I want to be around him. He advised me the importance of patience, discipline and hard work.”

Handy at Handball

Away from the track, Laban has a passion for the team sport of handball. At school he enjoyed his time playing the seven-a-side game where his agility, endurance and height would have made an impact. “I played for three years at school,” he explains. “I was the scorer. One game during the district championships I scored nearly all the goals. I am still interested in the sport today. I watch handball at the Olympics.”

Laban Likes Linz

Laban set his PB of 2:08:01 on his marathon debut in Cologne five years ago and triumphed in his most recent 42.2km outing in Ljubljana last October, but his career highlight came when winning the 2014 Linz Marathon in Austria.

“I beat some top athletes that day and also came close to the course record (he ran 2:08:03),” he says of winning that day. Long-term his goal is to run in a World Marathon Major.

Mutai’s Marathon Achievements

2019: Eindhoven marathon (2:06:40) – 1

2018: Eindhoven marathon (2:07:38)- 2

2012: Koln marathon (2:08:01) -4

2014: Linz Marathon (2:08:3)- 1

2019: Barcelona marathon (2:08:07)-6

2018: Seville marathon (2:08:23)- 6

2016: Ljubljana Marathon (2:09:16)-1

2015: Valencia marathon (2:09:55)-6

2013: Paris Marathon (2:11:10)- 11

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