Kenyans Timothy Rono and Beatrice Cheptoo bag Melbourne Marathon titles

Timothy Rono and Beatrice Cheptoo bagged the men's and women's titles at the Nike Melbourne Marathon in Australia on Sunday.

Rono clocked 2:09:12, smashing Dominic Ondoro's course record by one minute and 30 seconds set in 2013.

Compatriot Cornelius Kibet came second in 2:10:24 as Australia's Reece Edwards rounded the podium places in 2:14:41.

An ecstatic Rono was delighted with the victory in warm conditions in Australia's second-largest city.

"It was a good race. The conditions were good, a bit cloudy but not too hot and not too cold. I had prepared for it from the start and I kept going until the end," added Rono.

Rono broke away with six kilometers to go after being pushed close by Kibet.

"I timed my race quite well. I know Kibet. I knew I have a stronger kick  and that allowed me to increase the pace in the final few kilometers," said Rono. 

Following the win, Rono has set his eyes on the bigger city marathons like Boston, New York, London come next year.

“I'm looking at participating in the big ones next year, God willing. I want to test myself against the best and I am relishing the challenge,” he added.

For the win Rono bagged a cool Sh3 million.

In the women's category, Cheptoo ran a superb race in a time of 2:27:58 on her debut on Australian soil .

Australia's Izzi Batt Doyle finished second in 2:28:10 with Maru Ejigu of Ethiopia third in 2:28:54

For the win Cheptoo bagged Sh2 million.

Australia's Jack Raynor won the men's half marathon in 1:02:16 while the women's category went to Jess Stenson in a time of 1:12:22.

Festival Director Marcus Gale, commented: “Congratulations to the winners and everyone who got involved in the 2022 Nike Melbourne Marathon Festival."

"Whether you were tackling the 42.195km for the first or 44th time, soaking up the city’s sights on the 3km track or cheering from the MCG grandstand, it was incredible to see the Australian running community out in full force and an honour to deliver another successful event for the city."

posted Monday October 3rd
by William Njuguna