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World half-marathon record falls to Ruth Chepngetich in Istanbul

Istanbul race promised fast times due to red-hot line up and it delivered despite damp conditions

Ruth Chepngetich took almost half a minute off the women’s world half-marathon record in Istanbul on Sunday (April 4).

The Kenyan, who won the world marathon title in the heat and humidity of Doha in 2019, clocked 64:02 for the 13.1-mile distance as she smashed the 64:31 mark held by Ababel Yeshaneh of Ethiopia.

The 26-year-old is certainly familiar with the roads of Istanbul. She has now won the city’s half-marathon three times and in 2018 she ran 2:18:35 to win the Istanbul Marathon.

Yeshaneh’s world record was set at the RAK Half in February last year. That race was called off this year due to the coronavirus, which effectively meant many of the leading entrants competed in Istanbul instead.

Racing less than 24 hours after Beth Potter ran the fastest ever 5km on the roads at the Podium 5km in Lancashire, Chepngetich drew away from a strong field in Istanbul in damp and cool conditions.

The event featured a mass participation field and also inline skaters and saw the runners tackling the distance on the banks of the Bosphorus on a wet morning in Turkey.

Not only was Chepngetich’s time a world record, too, but it was quicker than the fastest-ever half-marathon set on the roads – the 64:28 by Brigid Kosgei on a Great North Run course that is disallowed for record purposes.

Runner-up Yalemrzew Yehualaf clocked 64:40 to go No.3 on the world all-time lists while Hellen Obiri, the world cross-country champion, clocked 64:51 on her debut, making this the first time three women had broken the 65-minute barrier in the same race.

Joan Chelimo Melly was fourth in 65:09 and world marathon record-holder Kosgei fifth in 66:01 as the top seven broke 67 minutes.

The eagerly-anticipated men’s race head to head between Kibiwott Kandie beats Geoffrey Kamworor, meanwhile, saw Kandie take the win by three seconds in 59:35 as he gradually drew away from his rival in the closing stages.

The runners were well outside Kandie’s men’s world record of 57:32 but Kandie’s time was a course record and the top five men broke the one-hour mark.

 

(04/04/2021) Views: 133 ⚡AMP
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World Records in danger at Istanbul Half Marathon Sunday

Super-strong fields tackle 13.1 miles in Turkish city on Sunday with Hellen Obiri, Brigid Kosgei, Peres Jepchirchir, Kibiwott Kandie and Geoffrey Kamworor among the entries

World records could fall at the Istanbul Half Marathon on Sunday (April 4) due to the red-hot line-ups that have been assembled.

The women’s race features marathon world record-holder Brigid Kosgei, world half-marathon gold medallist Peres Jepchirchir and world cross-country and 5000m champion Hellen Obiri.

Whereas the men’s race sees world half-marathon record-holder Kibiwott Kandie against former world record-holder Geoffrey Kamworor.

Obiri makes her half-marathon debut and she could hardly have picked a tougher first race.

In addition to Kosgei and Jepchirchir, the Kenyan faces world marathon champion Ruth Chepngetich, plus Ethiopian Yalemzerf Yehualaw, Melat Kejeta of Germany and Yasemin Can of Turkey.

All eyes will be on Kandie and Kamworor in the men’s race but watch out too for Ethiopia’s Amdework Walelegn and Uganda’s Stephen Kissa plus Turkey’s Kaan Kigen Ozbilen.

Kandie and Kamworor were due to have a much-anticipated showdown at the RAK Half on February 19 but it was called off due to the pandemic.

If conditions are good Kandie’s world record of 57:32 – which was set in Valencia in December – will be under threat, whereas the women’s world record of 64:31 held by Ababel Yeshaneh is also in danger.

The races start 10am local time on Sunday April 4.

(04/03/2021) Views: 138 ⚡AMP
by Athletics Weekly
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Vodafone Istanbul Half Marathon

Vodafone Istanbul Half Marathon

The Istanbul Half Marathon is an annual road running event over the half marathon distance (21.1 km) that takes place in April on the streets of Istanbul, Turkey. It is now a IAAF Gold Label event. The Istanbul Half Marathon was first organized in 1987. After several breaks it was finally brought back to life in 2015 when the Istanbul...

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The most remarkable line-up has been announced for Istanbul Half Marathon

Organizers of the N Kolay Istanbul Half Marathon have announced the most remarkable line-up in the history of this World Athletics Elite Label road race, to be held on 4 April.

Having staged a successful edition under intense measures against Covid-19 in September last year, the event is now set to host a limited number of 4000 participants on its traditional date of the first Sunday of April.

The race will see the long-awaited clash of the reigning and former world record-holders over the distance. Kibiwott Kandie of Kenya, now the world’s fastest half-marathon runner, improved the time set by his compatriot Geoffrey Kamworor in Valencia in December, bringing down the world record to 57:32 from 58:01. Kamworor, who has three World Athletics Half Marathon Championships gold medals under his belt, will be back on the roads following his recovery from surgery after he was hit by a motorcycle in June last year.

The two Kenyans will be joined by two sub-59 minute runners in Amedework Walelegn of Ethiopia, the Istanbul Half Marathon record-holder who won in 59:50 in 2018, and Uganda's Stephen Kissa, who made his debut over the distance in February 2020 and finished the year with a time of 58:56. Kenya’s Leonard Barsoton, sixth at the World Athletics Half Marathon Championships in Gdynia last year, will also be one of the fastest athletes on the start line.

Home hopes in Istanbul will be led by Kaan Kigen Ozbilen, who holds the national record with 59:48. Aras Kaya, European cross country champion in 2019, will also be a strong contender in the event that incorporates the National Half Marathon Championships.

The women’s field is equally as strong. Kenya’s marathon world record-holder Brigid Kosgei and the women-only half-marathon world record-holder Peres Jepchirchir, plus the second fastest female half-marathon runner of all time Yalemzerf Yehualaw of Ethiopia, will head the line-up.

Kenyan Ruth Chepngetich, the race record-holder and the reigning world marathon champion, will be a co-favorite in the race along with Joan Chelimo Melly.

The European women-only record-holder Melat Kejeta from Germany will also be on the start line on 4 April. The home crowd expects Kejeta’s record to be challenged by Yasemin Can.

Kamworor, Kandie, Kosgei and Yehualaw had been among the athletes set to race at the Ras Al Khamimah Half Marathon in February before it was cancelled due to the pandemic.

(03/24/2021) Views: 119 ⚡AMP
by World Athletics
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Vodafone Istanbul Half Marathon

Vodafone Istanbul Half Marathon

The Istanbul Half Marathon is an annual road running event over the half marathon distance (21.1 km) that takes place in April on the streets of Istanbul, Turkey. It is now a IAAF Gold Label event. The Istanbul Half Marathon was first organized in 1987. After several breaks it was finally brought back to life in 2015 when the Istanbul...

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We didn't even think for a moment that the Istanbul Half Marathon, which we have organized for 14 years with pleasure, could be canceled

Turkey's largest city hosted the Vodafone Istanbul Half Marathon on September 20 -- one of the top eight half marathons in the world -- with measures against the novel coronavirus.

Participants this year ran 21 kilometers on the streets of Istanbul's historical peninsula on the European side of the city bifurcated by the Bosphorus Strait across two continents. Professional competitors were limited to only around 2,500 due to the precautions against the virus.

Turkish runners Sezgin Atac (photo) and Fatma Demir clinched the 15th edition of the Istanbul Half Marathon.  Atac finfor new beginners.ished in 1 hour, 3 minutes and 16 seconds in the men's category, while Demir clocked 1 hour, 13 minutes and 17 seconds in the women's race.

Among other athletes on Sunday was Fatih Topcu (third photo), who also competes in triathlons and is a diver and climber, and has over 62,000 subscribers on his YouTube channel Asla Durma (Never Stop) where he explains how to begin running.

For Topcu, 42, the run was easier than he expected: "It was a good race to see how the pandemic affected [me] after running a half marathon in [Turkey's Mediterranean province of] Antalya before coronavirus measures were implemented."

"It didn't affect me much. I enjoyed this race very much as the virus made us miss running a bit," added Topcu, who has run over 50 half marathons and six marathons over his career.

As the course was slightly different this year, according to Topcu, it gave the chance to run Istanbul's historical peninsula completely.

For Topcu, Sunday's run was one of the "best events I've ever run."

"Although there were 2,500 people in the race, the fact that there was no density anywhere shows us the quality of the organization," he added.

"My only sadness was that very few foreigners were able to compete due to the pandemic and they could not see this quality organization," he said.

'I was nervous before the run'

Topcu admitted that he was a bit nervous before the run, the thought of being among 2,500 people in the same environment was "a little scary."

"The organizers found very good solutions," he said. "Before and after the race, I didn't wait in line anywhere. The start was completely in line with the pandemic rules and was very comfortable. Obviously, we can continue with the same rules after the pandemic."

This year also saw the world's first virtual half marathon with runners allowed to go 10 km or 15 km tracks via a mobile application.

On Sunday, just after the half marathon, Renay Onur, the general manager of Spor Istanbul, a subsidiary of the Istanbul Metropolitan Municipiality Museum that organizes the long-distance run, said in an email sent to all the participants: "We didn't even think for a moment that the Istanbul Half Marathon, which we have organized for 14 years with pleasure, could be canceled."

The event, originally scheduled for April this year, was delayed due to the coronavirus.

"Sports are the only thing that can gather the whole world around them whatever faith, language, religion, race you are," Onur said.

"To keep these values ​​alive during the pandemic period with you, we chose to say, 'we're all here together, we're healthy, we're taking our precautions and choosing to continue life,' as one of the biggest cities in the world that has experienced the pandemic."

According to Onur, around 50 marathons have been canceled and the same amount of the running events delayed due to the coronavirus.

This year's event involved precautions from the registrations and kit distribution phases and from the start of the race to the finish.

Athletes received their running kits from Istanbul's Ataturk City Forest -- an open area -- to prevent the spread of the virus.

On Sunday, participants were allowed to use public transportation free of charge, showing their bib number.

Every runner had to use face-masks at the beginning of the run and they were allowed to take them off when they began running. At the end of the run, every athlete was given a new mask.

Though spectators were not allowed at the event this year, organizers prepared an area under a bridge for virtual viewing, placing speakers so runners could hear encouragement: "Run! You can do it! Faster!"

On Sunday's event, Turkish runners Sezgin Atac and Fatma Demir clinched the Istanbul Half Marathon, which hosted 47 elite athletes.

Now, Turkey's largest city is getting ready to host its next major event under coronavirus measures, the Istanbul Marathon, on Nov. 8. Topcu says he is also looking forward to running in this long-distance competition, as well as in Ironman Turkey on Nov. 1 in Antalya.

(09/24/2020) Views: 257 ⚡AMP
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Vodafone Istanbul Half Marathon

Vodafone Istanbul Half Marathon

The Istanbul Half Marathon is an annual road running event over the half marathon distance (21.1 km) that takes place in April on the streets of Istanbul, Turkey. It is now a IAAF Gold Label event. The Istanbul Half Marathon was first organized in 1987. After several breaks it was finally brought back to life in 2015 when the Istanbul...

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The Vodafone Istanbul Half Marathon is set to be run on September 20

The Vodafone Istanbul Half Marathon will be held on Sept. 20 with a limited number of athletes.

A total of 2,500 athletes will be able to run in the Vodafone Istanbul Half Marathon.

Participants will have two options in the organization. They can either run a distance of 21 kilometers (13 miles) on the streets of Istanbul's historical peninsula or they can run alone on their own track in Turkey's first virtual half marathon.

The virtual half marathon will run on Sept. 19 or 20, aiming to minimize the risk of infection by the novel coronavirus during the event.

Those who want to join in the virtual race will receive a special running code after signing in on their website

They will complete their registration after paying a fee for the category of the race -- either 21 km or 10 km (6 miles).

After the race, participants may send their data to Spor Istanbul on its mobile application.

(09/05/2020) Views: 321 ⚡AMP
by Ercan Dogan
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Vodafone Istanbul Half Marathon

Vodafone Istanbul Half Marathon

The Istanbul Half Marathon is an annual road running event over the half marathon distance (21.1 km) that takes place in April on the streets of Istanbul, Turkey. It is now a IAAF Gold Label event. The Istanbul Half Marathon was first organized in 1987. After several breaks it was finally brought back to life in 2015 when the Istanbul...

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The Vodafone Istanbul Half Marathon, with the participation of 2,500 athletes, is set to be held on September 20.

2,500 athletes to run in Istanbul Half Marathon

Annual road running event has IAAF Gold Label status

The Vodafone Istanbul Half Marathon, with the participation of 2,500 athletes, is set to be held on Sept. 20. 

It will take place at the historical peninsula in Istanbul with a limited number of athletes on a single track due to measures amid the coronavirus pandemic.

The athletes will run 21 km (13 miles) distance on the streets of the Turkish metropolitan.

The annual road running event has an International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF) Gold Label status. It was first organized in 1987.

(07/30/2020) Views: 384 ⚡AMP
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Vodafone Istanbul Half Marathon

Vodafone Istanbul Half Marathon

The Istanbul Half Marathon is an annual road running event over the half marathon distance (21.1 km) that takes place in April on the streets of Istanbul, Turkey. It is now a IAAF Gold Label event. The Istanbul Half Marathon was first organized in 1987. After several breaks it was finally brought back to life in 2015 when the Istanbul...

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World champion Netsanet Gudeta will be the one to beat at the Vodafone Istanbul Half Marathon

The 28-year-old Ethiopian set the women's-only race world record at the World Half Marathon Championships in Valencia last year, clocking 1:06:11.

But she's run even faster since, clocking 1:05:45 to equal the Ethiopian record at the RAK Half on 8 February, where she finished second. More recently, she ran 1:06:49 at the Bahrain Night Half Marathon on 15 March to finish third.

She'll face Ruth Chepngetich, who set the Istanbul course record of 1:06:19 in 2017. She was second in the Bahrain race last month, clocking 1:06:09 to clip ten seconds from her personal best.

Chepngetich began 2019 with a bang, winning January's Dubai Marathon in 2:17:08 to become the third fastest marathoner in history.

Other standouts include Ethiopians Bekelech Gudeta and Helen Tola, who have 1:07:03 and 1:07:47 lifetime bests to their credit; and Kenyan Delvine Meringor, another sub-1:08 runner.

(04/05/2019) Views: 1,329 ⚡AMP
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Vodafone Istanbul Half Marathon

Vodafone Istanbul Half Marathon

The Istanbul Half Marathon is an annual road running event over the half marathon distance (21.1 km) that takes place in April on the streets of Istanbul, Turkey. It is now a IAAF Gold Label event. The Istanbul Half Marathon was first organized in 1987. After several breaks it was finally brought back to life in 2015 when the Istanbul...

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Ethiopian Amdework Walelegn is set to defend his title at Istanbul half marathon

The Vodafone Istanbul Half Marathon, considered one of the best 10 half marathons in the world, will be held for the 14th time on April 7.

More than 10,000 athletes from almost 100 countries are expected to compete in the race, which is organized by the telecoms operator and the Istanbul municipality.

Against the backdrop of the city's landmarks on the historic peninsula, runners will compete in the categories of a 21-kilometer Half Marathon, 10K and Business Marathon.

Kenyan athlete Ruth Chepngetich, who won the title of Turkey's fastest female athlete in last year's Istanbul Marathon, will make a comeback in the half marathon.

In the men's category, Ethiopian athlete Amdework Walelegn, who broke a record with 59.50 minutes in the 2018 half marathon, also returns for the race's new edition.

(04/03/2019) Views: 1,031 ⚡AMP
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Vodafone Istanbul Half Marathon

Vodafone Istanbul Half Marathon

The Istanbul Half Marathon is an annual road running event over the half marathon distance (21.1 km) that takes place in April on the streets of Istanbul, Turkey. It is now a IAAF Gold Label event. The Istanbul Half Marathon was first organized in 1987. After several breaks it was finally brought back to life in 2015 when the Istanbul...

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19-year-old Walelegn sets a Turkish all-comers record at the Vodafone Istanbul Half Marathon

Ethiopian's Amdework Walelegn, clocked a personal best of 59:50 in his second half marathon at the Vodafone Istanbul Half Marathon Sunday. Walelegn, who turned 19 last month, arrived in Istanbul with a modest 1:02:00 lifetime best, a time he ran in his half marathon debut in Riyadh in February. However, he had proved that more was coming when he finished in a world-leading time of 27:36 at the Laredo 10km three weeks ago. The Ethiopian was in the leading pack going hard from the gun. The fast opening 2:43 kilometre led to a 14:10 split at five kilometres with an 11-man pack at the front. Along with Walelegn, Asefa Tefera of Ethiopia, Kenyans Leonard Langat and Evans Cheruiyot, and the Turkish duo Kaan Kigen Özbilen and Polat Kemboi Arıkan were still in contention when the group passed the 10-kilometre mark in 28:09. Arikan was the first to start losing ground after the 12th kilometre, but the rest held together at 15-k, reached in 42:15 and still well in line with the targeted pace of sub-60. (04/09/2018) Views: 1,247 ⚡AMP
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