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Beijing marathon champion Mathew Kisorio to defend title in 2020, has no Olympics plans

With no hope of making the Kenyan team to the Tokyo Olympic Games, Beijing marathon champion Mathew Kisorio has already planned his new season.

The 30-year-old says he will certainly be returning to the Chinese capital to defend his title in 2020 after his debut show on Nov. 3 saw him clinch the gold. He also has no intention to throw his hat in the ring to make the elusive Kenyan marathon team for the Olympics.

Kisorio says he was humbled by the Chinese reception and running culture and will not think twice if invited to fend off new pretenders seeking his treasured trophy. "Of course I loved the weather in China and I expect to come to Beijing again next year," said Kisorio on Tuesday. "The Olympics are not on my plans, but defending my crown in Beijing is something that I am dreaming of already."

It was the third road race for Kisorio in China after his debut at the Yangzhou Half Marathon in 2015, where he finished tenth clocking 60:58. He made the full marathon distance a year later in 2016 at the Dongying marathon, where he finished ninth clocking 2:14:13.

Beijing marathon remains the only race Kisorio has won in 2019 after an injury prevented him from finishing the Mexico City marathon back in August.

With a 2:04:53 personal best time from Valencia last year, Kisorio clocked a new course record in Beijing cutting off ten seconds off Ethiopia's Tadese Tola 2:07:06 mark, which he had set in 2003.

Last year, Kisorio was second at Paris marathon, third in Mexico City and Valencia before a foot injury slowed him down early this season. His other marathon victory was in Daegu, South Korea back in 2017.

(11/06/2019) ⚡AMP
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Beijing Marathon

Beijing Marathon

The Beijing Marathon is an annual marathon held in Beijing, People's Republic of China. The race was first held in 1981 and has been held every year since. The race begins at Tiananmen Square and finishes at the National Olympic SportsCenter stadium. Beijing Marathon is now a full marathon only marathon race. At the 2009 edition of the race, 4897...

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Course record broken at the Beijing Marathon

Kenya’s Mathew Kipkoech Kisorio broke away in the final 10 kilometres of the Beijing Marathon to rewrite the men’s course record at the IAAF Gold Label road race on Sunday (3).

The 30-year-old clocked 2:07:06 to earn his second victory over the classic distance, knocking 10 seconds off the course record set six years ago by Ethiopia’s 2013 world bronze medallist Tadese Tola.

“It is my first time to run in Beijing and I am very happy to win and to break the course record,” said Kisorio, who set his PB of 2:04:53 last year in Valencia. “The weather was fantastic. I expect to come to Beijing again next year.”

Starting under cloudy and drizzling skies with the temperature ranging from 7-10C, the race was fast from the outset. Four runners – Bazu Worku of Ethiopia, Kisorio and his compatriots Emmanuel Rutto and Solomon Kirwa Yego – led the race to 25km.

Worku, a three-time winner of the Houston Marathon, was the first to fade away after 28km, while 36-year-old Rutto quit the title contest after 30km. After another two kilometres, Kisorio broke away from Yego to move into a sole lead.

The 2017 Daegu Marathon winner was well on track to break the course record at 35km, reached in 1:45:10, and kept pushing ahead before hit the line in 2:07:06. Yego trailed by more than two minutes to finish second in 2:09:45. Rutto clocked 2:10:15 to finish third.

Ethiopia’s Sutume Asefa, 24, ran alone for most of the women’s race and scored her first marathon title in 2:23:31, trimming 29 seconds off her PB set in Dubai three years ago.

China’s Li Zhixuan, the sixth-place finisher in Beijing last year, took second place in 2:29:06. Pre-race favourite Mulu Seboka, the fastest entrant in the field with a PB of 2:21:56, finished third in 2:29:09.

“I am satisfied with second place but the time is kind of slower than I expected,” said the 25-year-old Li, who set a PB of 2:26:15 in Nagoya eight months ago.

The last time a Chinese runner managed to earn a podium finish in the country’s most prestigious road race was in 2014, when Gong Lihua finished third in the women’s race.

(11/03/2019) ⚡AMP
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Prague Half Marathon

Prague Half Marathon

This event lets runners experience Prague at twilight, when the city is at its magical, mysterious best. The women’s run celebrates the power and beauty of sisterhood. The 10K that follows unites all runner of all levels in a fun, fast romp through the beautiful Czech evening....

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Ethiopia’s Mekuant Ayenew returns to the Chinese capital aiming to regain the title he took three years ago at the Beijing Marathon

The 28-year-old Ayenew, who set his 2:09:00 PB at the 2017 Prague Marathon, clocked 2:11:09 to earn his first international marathon victory in 2016 at the most prestigious road running race in China, which was first launched in 1981.

It will be Ayenew’s third appearance in Beijing as he also finished seventh with 2:15:16 two years ago. His familiarity of the course, which starts at the landmark Ti’anmen Square and ends outside the Olympic Stadium, will be a big advantage for Ayenew. But retaining the title will not be an easy task as Ayenew will face a quality field that includes several sub 2:05 runners.

Fellow Ethiopian Endeshaw Negesse is the fastest man on paper with a personal best of 2:04:52 set in Dubai back in 2013. Negesse came close to that mark two years later when he won in Tokyo with 2:06:00, but his only race since then was a 17th-place finish in Dubai in 2:26:27.

Kenya’s Mathew Kipkoech Kisorio, meanwhile, is a serious title contender in Beijing. The 30-year-old improved his PB to 2:04:53 last year when he finished third in Valencia and clocked 2:06:36 to finish second at the Paris Marathon last April.

The men’s field also includes Bazu Worku of Ethiopia, a three-time winner of the Houston Marathon with a PB of 2:05:25, as well as Kenyan duo Evans Korir and Solomon Kirwa Yego, who both have sub-2:07 career-best times and both have broken 2:08 in 2019.

Mulu Seboka of Ethiopia is the fastest entrant in the women’s field. The 35-year-old owns a PB of 2:21:56, set in Dubai in 2015, and has won three straight races in China since 2018 with two victories in Dalian and one in Shenzhen. She clocked 2:27:19 in May to retain her title in Dalian.

Compatriots Sutume Asefa and Letebrhan Haylay are also among the favourites. With a best of 2:24:00, Asefa is the slightly quicker of the two women but is yet to win a marathon, while Haylay set a PB of 2:24:47 to break the course record at the Dongying Yellow River Marathon last year.

Kenya’s 2018 Daegu Marathon champion Janet Jelagat Rono, a 2:26:03 performer at her best, is another woman to watch.

Li Zhixuan is China’s best hope for the title on Sunday. The 25-year-old is the fastest Chinese woman this year as she clocked 2:26:15 in Nagoya in March, improving her PB by more than four minutes. She will be hoping to improve on her sixth-place finish from last year.

The last time Chinese runners took the top honours at Beijing Marathon dates back to 2013, when Zhang Yingying clocked 2:31:19 to extend China’s winning streak in the women’s race to 22 years.

(11/01/2019) ⚡AMP
by IAAF
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Beijing Marathon

Beijing Marathon

The Beijing Marathon is an annual marathon held in Beijing, People's Republic of China. The race was first held in 1981 and has been held every year since. The race begins at Tiananmen Square and finishes at the National Olympic SportsCenter stadium. Beijing Marathon is now a full marathon only marathon race. At the 2009 edition of the race, 4897...

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Valary Jemeli Aiyabei from Kenya becomes the first ever Kenyan winner of the women’s race at Beijing Marathon

The women’s race was first introduced to the Beijing Marathon in 1989, but Kenyan runners had never previously managed to reach the top step of the women’s podium. Aiyabei, the fastest entrant and the only Kenyan in the elite women’s field, broke clear after 20 kilometres and kept pushing ahead until hitting the line in 2:21:38, ending a four-year winning run by Ethiopian runners. Her winning mark is the fourth fastest in the history of the race and the quickest mark since 2005, but is two minutes shy of the 2:19:39 course record set by Sun Yingjie in 2003. “This is my first time running the Beijing Marathon,” said the 27-year-old, who set her PB of 2:20:53 when finishing third at last year’s Berlin Marathon. “The race today was good and the weather was good. Everything was good. I want to say thanks to my pacemaker and my husband, he did the best job. I am very happy.” The race was staged under cool ad breezing conditions and the in-form Aiyabei tried to break away soon after the gun. After passing the water station at five kilometres, only Bahrain’s Eunice Chebichi Chumba, with a PB of 2:24:27 set last year in Rotterdam, managed to keep up with Aiyabei’s pace. The duo remained together for another 15 kilometres before Aiyabei finally broke free from Chumba. Paced by her husband Kenneth Kiplagat Tarus, Aiyabei kept widening the gap between her and Chumba. When Tarus stepped out of the course at 40 kilometres, Aiyabei had already built a lead of more than four minutes. (09/17/2018) ⚡AMP
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Kenya’s Paul Kios Kangogo wants to win and break the course record at Beijing Marathon

Kangogo who has a best time of 2:09:20, said he has overcome his injury concerns and is ready to return to the winner's podium in the Chinese capital. However, it will not only be the win he is targeting but to improve on his best time and attack the course record of 2:07:16, which was set five years ago by Ethiopia's Tadese Tola. My training has gone well and everything is fine. I have pushed my body to the limit and am happy, I have come through without any problems. I can say am in-form. I know there will be a strong Ethiopian challenge including the past champions, but running a marathon is down to your own strength and strategy and past record count for less," Kangogo told Xinhua, Thursday in Nairobi. The Kenyan has blown hot and cold in the last two years, mainly due to injury and hopeful, after returning to fitness in April, he will be consistent to string together another podium finish. He however, will be up against the 2014 Beijing marathon champion Fatuma Sado, Tola Dibaba (2:06:17) and Abayneh Ayele (2:06:45) who will be running his third race in China this year. He finished second in 2:14:13 at the Chongqing marathon in March and went on to take third place in Dongying in 2:13:47. There is also Ethiopia's Seboka Negusse (2:09:44) winner at the Hannover marathon in April and Xiamen marathon champion Dejene Debela (2:07:10). (09/15/2018) ⚡AMP
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Meselech Beyene of Ethiopia aiming to capture another title at the Beijing Marathon

The 24-year-old Beyene enjoyed a comfortable solo lead in the final 10 kilometers en route to her 2:27:44 victory last year, one minute shy of her personal best set six months earlier in Barcelona. It will be the third race of the year for Beyene following a third place finish in Houston with a season’s best of 2:27:21 in January and a second place showing at the Vienna City Marathon in 2:29:51 three months later. Beyene will once again face a deep field in Beijing, as she did here last year, which includes several sub-2:25 runners including the 26-year-old Sado. The Ethiopian achieved her career best of 2:24:16 at the 2015 Toronto Waterfront Marathon, one year after her 2:30:03 victory in Beijing, where she ended a 22-year winning streak by local runners in the women’s race. Although she failed to dip under the 2:30 the past two years, Sado proved her competitiveness in Xiamen this January as she shrugged off the heavy rain and overcame a stomach problem in the latter stages to win her second title there in 2:26:41. Beyene and Sado are more familiar with the course that stretches from the landmark Tian’anmen Square and ends outside the National Stadium, better known as the “Birds Nest”, but the top favorite should be Kenya’s Valary Jemeli Aiyabei. The 27-year-old is the fastest woman on paper with a career best of 2:20:53 from her third finish at the 2017 Berlin Marathon. Prior to that performance in the German capital, the rising Kenyan emerged triumphant in four straight marathons in Eldoret, Barcelona, Valencia and Prague, improving her PB on each occasion. Her winning marks in Valencia and Prague remains as the course records and she also proved her worth in 2018 with a 2:22:48 clocking in Nagoya where she finish second. The field also includes two sub-2:22 runners, Mulu Seboka and Amane Gobena, who are both from Ethiopia. Gobena recorded her PB of 2:21:51 in Tokyo two years ago while Seboka set her lifetime best of 2:21:56 in Dubai in 2015. The duo will both arrive in Beijing with high spirits following their newly claimed titles this year in Mumbai and Dalian respectively. (09/15/2018) ⚡AMP
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