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Both the men and women course records were smashed at the 35th Annual Zurich Marathon in Sevilla

Ethiopians Ayana Tsedat and Guteni Shone grabbed convincing victories at the 35th Zurich Maratón de Sevilla, an IAAF Gold Label road race, on Sunday February 17. 

Running in nearly ideal weather conditions, the 22-year-old Tsedat clocked 2:06:36 to improve the race record by 1:07. Likewise Shone’s winning time of 2:24:29 broke the course record by a similar difference, 1:06.

Both men’s and women’s contests had strong depth as five men ducked under 2:07 while four women ran inside 2:27 as the new circuit proved to be even faster than the previous one.

The men’s race opened at a steady pace of 3:00m per kilometer.  A group of 13 runners hit the 10km point in 29:56 with Kenya’s Daniel Kipkore Kibet plus the Ethiopian group of Tsedat, Belay Asefa and Birhanu Berga.

The Madrid-based Tsegay went through the halfway point in 1:03:18 with ten men still running at his shoulder. By the 27k it was Kibet who moved to the front to maintain the rhythm, sharing the lead with Tsegay by 30 kilometers, reached in 1:30:09. Surprisingly, the Eritrean, a 2:09:56 performer, didn’t quit the race at that point and ran on with relative ease.

By then the main group included Tsegay, Kibet and the Ethiopian trio of Tsedat, Asefa and Berga, with the race record of 2:07:43 seemingly well within reach. In the closing kilometer Tsedat launched his attack. First Kibet and then Tadese fell back while Asefa and Berga followed behind in single file, but unable to maintain the pace. Tsedat cross the line in 2:06:36 to obliterate his previous lifetime best of 2.09:26 set last year in Barcelona while Asefa (2:06:39) and Berga (2:06:41) secured an Ethiopian podium sweep, also improving their career bests.

Meanwhile Tsegay, the designated pacemaker, crossed the line in 2:06:46 to break the Eritrean national record and obliterate his previous best. Tsegay trains in Madrid under the guidance of Jerónimo Bravo, the coach who led Zersenay Tadese to the world half marathon record of 58:23 back in 2010.

In the women's race, it was Spanish marathon Roger Roca who was given pacing duties on track to break the 2:25:35 record set last year. He set a steady 3:26 per kilometer pace to go through the opening 10,000m in 34:25 with ten women following closely. The halfway point was reached in 1:12:40 by a group of eight Ethiopians.

The leading quintet passed 30k in 1:43:17, still led by Roca and well on schedule to set a new race record. Shone and Gebremeskel proved to be the strongest as they comfortably led by the 35k point, still on track for a sub-2:25 performance.

Then Shone, one of Tirunesh Dibaba’s training partners, made her move, reaching the 40km point in 2:17:03 with a 12 second advantage over Gebremeskel. The 27-year-old injected an even faster pace over the closing kilometers to romp home in 2:24:29, less than one minute outside of her PB set four years ago. Gebremeskel clocked 2:24:53, improved her previous best by more than five minutes. 

(02/17/2019) ⚡AMP
by from IAAF
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Zurich Marathon Sevilla

Zurich Marathon Sevilla

This urban, flat, fast and beautiful brand new race course will drive athletes through the most beautiful monuments of the city. Zurich Maraton de Sevilla brings the unique opportunity to brake the Best personal result over the mythical distance to all the athletes, professional or age groupers, in one of the most perfect international marathon circuits. This fast marathon takes...

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A strong field is expected at the 35th Zurich Maratón de Sevilla on Sunday

The Zurich Maratón de Sevilla is one of the flattest courses worldwide and the new circuit is just as flat and fast.

The large Ethiopian contingent includes Belay Afesa, holder of a 2:07:10 lifetime best set in Hamburg five years ago, sub-2:10 runners Seboka Nigusse (2:09:14) and Ayana Tsedat (2:09:26) and sub-11 men Melaku Bechalew (2:10:31) and Regasa Mindaye (2:10:51).

Meanwhile, the Kenyan challenge will be led by Samuel Kiplimo Kosgei, whose 2:06:53 career best dates back to 2016. More recently, he ran 2:09:07 last October in Gyeongju. Another contender is Jonah Chesum, winner of the 2017 Barcelona marathon with a lifetime best of 2:08:57. He last raced in October's Lisbon Marathon clocking 2:10:08.

Eritrea’s Yohanes Gebregergish boasts a 2:08:14 career best from the 2017 Tokyo Marathon. He clocked 2:11:27 in Valencia in December, his last outing. His countryman Okubay Tsegay will be the designated pacemaker chargeed with leading the main group to the 30 kilometre checkpoint. The scheduled split for the half is 1:03:30, well inside the pace required to challenge the 2:07:43 course record set by Kenyan Titus Ekiru two years ago. 

Likewise, the women's race is wide open.

Ethiopia’s Hiwot Gebrekidan, who arrives on the heels of a 1:07:36 half marathon personal best set in Copenhagen in September, is among the athletes to beat. The 23-year-old will be aiming to improve on her personal best of 2:25:45 set in 2017. Guteni Shone is the quickest woman in Sunday’s line-up thanks to a 2:23:32 outing in Houston in 2015, though she was far from that in her last appearance, a 2:31:41 effort in Lisbon last October.

Other Ethiopians include Aynalem Kassahun (PB 2:28:18) and Meskerem Abera (2:28:35). Kenya will be represented by Susan Jeptoo who set her 2:30:50 best in Prague last year.

European hopes rest on two debutants: Sweden’s 2014 European 3000m steeplechase silver medallist Charlotta Fougberg, who has a 1:11:58 half marathon best to her credit, and 24-year-old Dutchwoman Jip Vastenburg, who clocked 1:11:04 for the half marathon in Valencia in 2017. 

The 2:25:35 course record was set last year by Moroccan Kaoutar Boulaidran, who has struggled with injury since. Still on the mend, she won’t be back to defend her title.

(02/15/2019) ⚡AMP
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Zurich Marathon Sevilla

Zurich Marathon Sevilla

This urban, flat, fast and beautiful brand new race course will drive athletes through the most beautiful monuments of the city. Zurich Maraton de Sevilla brings the unique opportunity to brake the Best personal result over the mythical distance to all the athletes, professional or age groupers, in one of the most perfect international marathon circuits. This fast marathon takes...

more...
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Kenyan´s Chesum returns to defend title in Barcelona

Jonah Chesum returns to defend his title at the Zurich Barcelona Marathon, an IAAF Bronze Label road race. Chesum was a pacesetter last year who went on to win the race in 2:08:57 in his debut over the distance. Later in the season the 29-year-old took fifth in the Gold Coast Marathon clocking 2:10:47. To help remember his surprise victory last year, Chesum spent part of his earnings from the race to buy a cow for his farm in Iten. “Of course,” he said with a laugh, “I named her ‘Barcelona’. Now she is pregnant and the calf will be named ‘Messi’.” (03/09/2018) ⚡AMP
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Morocco’s Kaoutar Boulaid breaks course record in seville

Kenya’s Dickson Tuwei and Morocco’s Kaoutar Boulaid triumphed at the 34th Zurich Maratón de Sevilla. Running in nearly ideal weather conditions, Tuwei clocked 2:08:18 while Boulaid’s winning time of 2:25:32 broke the course record by more than half a minute. “Honestly, I didn’t expect a 2:25 clocking but a time in the 2:27-2:28 region,” said Boulaid, who is based in Spain. “I went out fast but managed to maintain the pace in the second half and beat the Ethiopians.” (02/26/2018) ⚡AMP
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Ethiopians Assefa and Debebe lead the elite field at the Zurich Marathon

Ethiopians Fikre Assefa and Zinash Debebe will be among the favourites at the Zurich Marathon de Sevilla. The race, which boasts one of the flattest courses worldwide, will also serve as the Spanish championships for the distance which has attracted the local crème.Assefa seems to be the field’s most in-form runner as he finished last year on a high by setting a career best of 2:08:36 in Kosice for second, his first ever sub-2:10 clocking.The women’s event features a fine Ethiopian contingent including Zinash Debebe, who set her career best of 2:30:38 in Beirut last November. (02/23/2018) ⚡AMP
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