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Kenya’s Marius Kipserem regained his NN Rotterdam Marathon title with a course record of 2:04:11

On a perfect day for running, Kenya’s Marius Kipserem regained his NN Rotterdam Marathon title with a course record of 2:04:11, while Ashete Bekere won the women’s crown in 2:22:55 on Sunday.

A large lead group set off a bit too fast for the first kilometer but the pace soon settled and they covered the first 10 kilometers in 29:33 before reaching the half-way point in 1:02:17.

Twelve men were still together at the front when the pacemakers left at 30 kilometers, reached in 1:28:38, but Kenya’s Emanuel Saina then accelerated and only his teammates Kipserem and Vincent Rono could follow. Kipserem soon took up the running, forcing everyone to run alone for the final 10 kilometers.

With a slight increase in pace in the final stages, Kipserem eventually crossed the finish line on the Coolsingel in 2:04:11 to take 16 seconds off the course record set 10 years ago.

“I’m very happy with my victory and course record,” said the 30-year-old, who took exactly two minutes off the PB he set when winning in Rotterdam in 2016. “At 39 kilometers it seemed as though the course record might not be possible, but thankfully I was able to speed up.”

Turkey’s Kaan Kigen Özbilen finished second in 2:05:27, just 16 seconds shy of Mo Farah’s European record and the second-fastest time ever by a European athlete.

(04/08/2019) ⚡AMP
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NN Rotterdam Marathon

NN Rotterdam Marathon

The NN Marathon Rotherdam has been the biggest one-day sporting event in the Netherlands for many years in a row with over 35000 athletes professionals inclusive. The world's top athletes will at the start on the bustling coolsingel, alongside thousands of other runners who will also triumph,each in their own way.The marathon weekend is a wonderful blend of top sport...

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Leading contenders for this year’s NN Marathon Rotterdam will try to break the course record of 2:04:27

Kenya’s Marius Kipserem will start as the slight favorite. He won the Abu Dhabi Marathon in December in 2:04:04, but his time cannot be counted as an official PB because it was later found that the course was slightly short. That in itself, though, will act as a huge motivating factor for the 30-year-old as he seeks to improve on his fifth-place finish from Rotterdam last year.

Ethiopia’s Tsegaye Mekonnen and Markos Geneti have sub-2:05 PBs, while Emanuel Saina and Woldaregay Gezahegn Kelkile are also strong competitors. Josphat Kiptoo Boit, who burst on to the road-running scene last year with half-marathon clockings of 59:19 and 59:42, will be making his marathon debut.

Dutch record-holder Abdi Nageeye and European champion Koen Naert of Belgium will be aiming to break their respective PBs of 2:08:16 and 2:09:51 or at least secure the Olympic qualifying mark of 2:11:30.

Three world records had been set in the Dutch city: Carlos Lopes’s 2:07:12 in 1985, Belayneh Dinsamo’s 2:06:50 in 1988 and Tegla Loroupe’s 2:20:47 in 1998. The men’s course record of 2:04:27 was set – and shared – by Duncan Kibet and James Kwambai in 2009 with the pair moving to equal second on the world all-time list at that time.

Having won the Valencia Marathon last year in 2:21:14, Ethiopia’s Ashete Bekele Dido will start as favorite in the women’s race. Compatriot Sentayehu Lewetegn and Kenya’s Stella Barsosio are both sub-2:24 performers and are expected to challenge for top honours.

USA’s Kellyn Taylor, Ethiopia’s Betelhem Moges and Portugal’s European half marathon champion Sara Moreira should also be in contention for the podium places.

Approximately 17,000 runners will take to the Erasmus Bridge for the start of the race on Sunday.

(04/05/2019) ⚡AMP
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NN Rotterdam Marathon

NN Rotterdam Marathon

The NN Marathon Rotherdam has been the biggest one-day sporting event in the Netherlands for many years in a row with over 35000 athletes professionals inclusive. The world's top athletes will at the start on the bustling coolsingel, alongside thousands of other runners who will also triumph,each in their own way.The marathon weekend is a wonderful blend of top sport...

more...
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2018 Abu Dhabi Marathon champion Marius Kipserem from Kenya eyes podium at Rotterdam Marathon

The 2018 Abu Dhabi Marathon champion Marius Kipserem is focusing on a podium finish when he lines up at the 39th edition of the NN Rotterdam Marathon on Sunday.

He will be competing against his training mate and Buenos Aires Marathon champion Emmanuel Saina and Sydney Marathon champion Elijah Kemboi.

The athlete, who has been training in Kapsabet and the plains of Nandi Hills in Nandi County, said that he has done good training and will be looking forward to a good race.

“My training went on well and I’m prepared for stiff competition but I want to be among the first three athletes,” said Kipserem.

The athlete is also eyeing to reduce his personal best of 2:04:04, which he clocked in Abu Dhabi Marathon last year.

“If the weather will be favourable, I think I can lower my time as I look forward to participate in the major marathons in future,” said the athlete.

On his part, Kemboi said that he is well prepared for the race and he will be teaming up with his training mate as they eye the podium finish.

“My training has been good and we are going to run well in the race on Sunday. Having trained with Kipserem, we will run together up to the 35km mark and after that, it will be everybody for himself,” said Kemboi.

Kigen said that he believes the training he has done will bring him good results as he looks forward to be in the podium of NN Rotterdam Marathon this Sunday.

(04/02/2019) ⚡AMP
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NN Rotterdam Marathon

NN Rotterdam Marathon

The NN Marathon Rotherdam has been the biggest one-day sporting event in the Netherlands for many years in a row with over 35000 athletes professionals inclusive. The world's top athletes will at the start on the bustling coolsingel, alongside thousands of other runners who will also triumph,each in their own way.The marathon weekend is a wonderful blend of top sport...

more...
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Belayneh Densamo the former Marathon World Record holder should have had more support to train and he had to flee his country and was left for dead

Belayneh Densamo ran the first sub 2:07 marathon 30 years ago. Yet he was not able to run in the 1988 or 1992 Olympics.

Belayneh was born on June 28, 1965 in Diramo Afarrara, Sidamo. He held the world record in the marathon for 10 years (1988-1998). This was the third longest span without the record being broken since the event was first organized at the 1896 Olympics. The record was set when he ran 2:06:50 at the 1988 Rotterdam Marathon in the Netherlands. The record was eventually broken by Ronaldo da Costa at the Berlin Marathon in 1998.

His first international marathon race was in Japan in 1986 where he finished second in 2:08.29.  

He became the second world record holder in the marathon from Africa after his barefoot running compatriot Abebe Bikila.

In 1988 the Ethiopian regime decided to boycott the Games in Seoul.  Densamo could do nothing but accept the dictator Mengistu's decision and not run in the Olympics.

In 1992, Densamo's preparation for the Games in Barcelona was severely disrupted again. In his homeland a fierce battle was going on for political power. Densamo was pressured by a gang to give them money, but did not succumb to the threat.  However, after a bomb exploded under his house, he fled. "I had to protect my family. These were sad times, my head was no longer into running. As the best marathon runner in the world, I should have had all the support to train, but I had to flee and was left for dead. I did not get a fair chance at the Olympics. Very sad.''

Things did improve for him and he did represent Ethiopia at the marathon at the 1996 Summer Olympics, but the hot and humid summer in Atlanta, Georgia was just too much for him and he was among 13 of a field of 130 who did not finish.

Densamo moved from his native Ethiopia to Rotterdam in 2003, he says, but he eventually opted for the United States. He wanted to give his three daughters the chance to get a good education.

The shy man escaped poverty through his running talent, is now a proud family man living with his family in Boston, Massachusetts. At 52 he leads a regular, quiet life.  "When people see me, they estimate me 35 years. I live healthy, I still work hard and I am an assistant coach at Boston University," he says.

This interview was done in December 2018 by Markos Berhanu for Ethiosports. 

(02/23/2019) ⚡AMP
by Markos Berfanu
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Four runners go under 2:06 at the Rotterdam Marathon this morning

It was a good day for Kenyans in Rotterdam as Kenneth Kipkemoi and Visiline Jepkesho dominated to win their respective races during the 38th edition of the Rotterdam Marathon in the Netherlands on Sunday April 8. Kipkemoi clocked 2 hours, 05 minutes and 44 seconds to win and locked out Ethiopians Abera Kuma and Kelkile Gezahegn from the top podium place. Kuma, the 2015 winner was forced to settle second in 2:05:50, beating Gezahegn to third place by sevens second in 2:05:57. Kenya’s Laban Korir came in fourth in 2:05:58 followed by the 2016 champion Marius Kipserem in 2:07:22. Under sunny circumstances, the 33-year-old Kipkemoi finished solo on the Coolsingel Street in his European marathon debut. After the start at the Erasmus Bridge, a group of 14 athletes distanced themselves from the rest and halfway, there were 10 leaders left. In the final kilometers, Kipkemoi proved to be the best to edge out Kuma and Kelkile. Jepkesho, the 2016 Paris Marathon champion, ended Kenyan women’s long drought at the championship, winning her race in 2:23:47, missing the course record of 2:23:27 held by disgraced doper Jemima Sumgong by 20 second (04/08/2018) ⚡AMP
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