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Hellen Obiri to defend Great North Run title, Peres Jepchirchir in the mix

Defending champion Hellen Obiri and Olympic marathon champion Peres Jepchirchir will be in the women’s lineup for the Great North Run slated for September 11 in the streets of Newcastle.

Obiri won last year’s edition in 1:07:42. She is a two-time world 5000m champion and a two-time Olympic 5000m silver medalist. Obiri has a personal best time of 1:04:22 which she ran at the Ras Al Khaimah Half Marathon in February.

Jepchirchir, who will be making her debut, has a personal best time of 1:05.06 which she ran at the 2017 Ras Al Khaimah Half Marathon. She placed first during the World Athletics Half Marathon Championships in 2016 and 2020 in respective times of 1:07:31 and 1:05:16. Jepchirchir is also a former world half marathon record holder. 

The Kenyan duo will be competing against the Ethiopian duo of Hiwot Gebrekidan and former Olympic 10,000m champion Almaz Ayana. Gebrekidan and Ayana have personal best times of 1:06:47 and 1:07:12 respectively.

Gebrekidan is the winner of the 2016 Copenhagen Half Marathon. She is also a former World Under-20 3000m silver medalist. Ayana won in the 2017 edition of the New Delhi Half Marathon. She is also a former world 10,000m record holder when she broke China’s Wang Junxia record during the 2016 Rio Olympics.

Charlotte Purdue and Jess Piasecki, both from Great Britain will also be in the race. Purdue placed third during last year’s edition of the Great North Run. She has a personal best time of 1:08:23 which she ran at the 2020 Kagawa Marugame International Half Marathon in Japan. 

Piasecki has a personal best time of 1:07:20 which she ran at this year’s Santa Pola Half Marathon in Spain. She is also the winner of the 2019 Usti Half Marathon in Czech Republic. She will also be making her Great North Run half marathon debut.

(09/05/2022) Views: 106 ⚡AMP
by Abigael Wuafula
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Great North Run

Great North Run

Great North Run founder Brendan Foster believes Britain is ready to welcome the world with open arms after the launch of the event's most ambitious plan to date. The Great World Run campaign seeks to recruit one runner from every country in the United Nations – 193 in total – to take part in the iconic half marathon in...

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Joyciline Jepkosgei, Brigid Kosgei ready to clash in London Marathon

Defending champion Joyciline Jepkosgei will confront two times champion and world record holder Brigid Kosgei at this year's London Marathon on October 22 in the British capital.

Jepkosgei, who claimed her maiden victory in the British capital in a personal best and eighth fastest time of two hours, 17 minutes and 43 seconds last year, and Kosgei, the 2019 and 2020 winner, are part of the elite field heading for the race.

Jepkosgei became the 10th Kenyan woman to win the London Marathon on her third appearance in 2019.

In the same year, she won the New York Marathon in 2:22:38 and finished second at the Valencia Marathon (2:18:40).

Kosgei, who set the world record of 2:14:04 at the 2019 Chicago Marathon, finished a surprise fourth last year, but bounced back to win this year’s Tokyo Marathon in a world-lead time of 2:16:02.

Jepkosgei, 28, joined the long list of Kenyan athletes who have won the London Marathon; Joyce Chepchumba (2), Tegla Loroupe (1), Margaret Okayo (1), Keitany (3), Prisca Jeptoo (1), Edna Kiplagat (1), Jemima Sumgong (1), Vivian Cheruiyot (1) and Kosgei (2).

“It was a great achievement for me,” said Jepkosgei on the London marathon website.

“It was not an easy race.There were a lot of strong competitors and I stayed with them until there were only a few kilometres left."

“Then I was on my own. It was hard, but the cheerers around me kept me motivated and got me to the end. I was so happy to get to the finish line.”

Jepkosgei’s delight at winning was hard to miss and stayed with her throughout the night:

“I didn’t sleep at all, I was so happy,” she said.

“This achievement will stay with me forever. It was a great achievement and will last a lifetime.”

The other Kenyan in the race is Mary Ngugi, 33, who for the second consecutive time, came third during the Boston Marathon on April 18, but this time around in a personal best of 2:21:32.

The Kenyans will take on the fastest-ever female marathon debutant Yalemzerf Yehualaw, who leads a horde of Ethiopian runners to the London streets.

The 22-year-old Yehualaw is the current 10K world record holder (29:14) and ran 2:17:23 to win the Hamburg Marathon in April, the fastest marathon debut ever.

Ethiopian duo Degitu Azimeraw and Ashete Bekere, who finished second and third last year, also return.

Bekere finished second behind Kosgei at this year’s Tokyo Marathon in a personal best of 2:17:58.

ELITE FIELD

Brigid Kosgei (Ken) 2:14:04 (WR)

Yalemzerf Yehualaw (Eth)2:17:23

Joyciline Jepksogei (Ken)2:17:43

Degitu AZIMERAW (Eth)2:17:58

Ashete BEKERE (Eth) 2:17:58

Joan Chelimo MELLY ROU 2:18:04

Sutume Asefa KEBEDE (Eth) 2:18:12

Alemu MEGERTU (Eth) 2:18:51

Hiwot GEBREKIDAN (Eth) 2:19:10

Ababel YESHANEH (Eth) 2:20:51

Mary NGUGI (Ken) 2:21:32.

(07/06/2022) Views: 212 ⚡AMP
by Ayumba Ayodi
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TCS London Marathon

TCS London Marathon

The London Marathon was first run on March 29, 1981 and has been held in the spring of every year since 2010. It is sponsored by Virgin Money and was founded by the former Olympic champion and journalist Chris Brasher and Welsh athlete John Disley. It is organized by Hugh Brasher (son of Chris) as Race Director and Nick Bitel...

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Kipchoge and Kosgei race to Japanese all-comers' records in Tokyo

World record-holders Eliud Kipchoge and Brigid Kosgei recorded another two of the fastest marathons of all time in Tokyo on Sunday (6), running 2:02:40 and 2:16:02 respectively on their return to Japan.

Back in the country where they claimed their respective Olympic gold and silver medals seven months ago, they both used their great experience to leave their rivals behind in the closing kilometres and break the Japanese all-comers' records in the Tokyo Marathon, the first World Athletics Elite Platinum Label road race of the 2022 calendar.

Kipchoge’s performance is the fourth-best ever behind his own world record of 2:01:39 set in Berlin in 2018, while Kosgei’s is a time that only she with her world record of 2:14:04 from Chicago in 2019 and Paula Radcliffe with her 2:15:25 from London in 2003 have ever beaten.

Kenya’s world bronze medallist Amos Kipruto had remained with Kipchoge until 36km and continued running solo to a PB of 2:03:13 in second, while Ethiopia’s Olympic and world medallist Tamirat Tola was third in the men's race in 2:04:14.

In the women’s race, Ethiopia’s 2019 Berlin Marathon winner Ashete Bekere was runner-up this time in a PB of 2:17:58, while another winner in Berlin – 2021 champion Gotytom Gebreslase – was third, 20 seconds behind her compatriot, in a PB of 2:18:18.

Although missing his targeted own Japanese record, Kengo Suzuki had another strong performance, running 2:05:28 to finish fourth as 22 athletes went sub-2:09. A total of 50 runners, including 43 Japanese athletes, dipped under 2:15, while in the women’s race the top five went sub-2:20, 13 went under 2:30 and Mao Ichiyama with 2:21:02 in sixth led the list of 13 Japanese athletes to go sub-2:40 on a sunny and cool morning.

Despite all he has achieved in the sport so far, marathon great Kipchoge has set himself another aim of winning each of the six Abbott World Marathon Majors. After four London wins, three Berlin victories and one Chicago triumph, he added Tokyo to the list on Sunday and will now aim for Boston and New York City at some point in the future to compete the set.

With his winning time in Tokyo, Kipchoge also extended his list of all-comers’ records, having now run the fastest ever marathons on German, British and Japanese soil with some of those majors wins. Only he with his world record and 2:02:37 run in London in 2019, plus Ethiopia’s Kenenisa Bekele with 2:01:41 in Berlin in 2019, have ever gone faster than the Kenyan’s winning time in Japan’s capital.

The race had been fast from the start and the leaders – with Kipchoge in control at the front of the pack behind the pacemakers – were well under world record pace as they passed 5km in 14:17. That pointed to a predicted 2:00:13 finishing time, but one based on a first 5km featuring a substantial downhill. At 10km the clock showed 28:37, with Ethiopia’s Shura Kitata dropped by that point, the 2020 London Marathon winner having struggled to keep in touch from 8km. A course mishap that saw runners go slightly off track just after 10km gave Kitata the chance to close the gap but he was soon dropped again from a lead group that featured Kipchoge, Kipruto and Tola, together with Ethiopia’s world silver medallist Mosinet Geremew and Kenya’s Jonathan Korir.

That five-strong pack remained together through 15km in 43:16, 20km in 57:53 and half way in 1:01:03, with the world record looking less of a target.

Geremew had been right on Kipchoge’s shoulder up to that point but he dropped back slightly at around 23km and one kilometre later the world silver medallist – who sits fourth on the world marathon all-time list with the 2:02:55 he ran in London in 2019 – pulled up and started to walk, with his hands on his head.

When the final pacemaker stopped at 27km, Kipchoge continued to push ahead and the race was down to three: Kipchoge, Kipruto and Tola, who started to lose touch 2km later. Kipchoge led through 30km in 2:02:09 and at this point a determined Suzuki had caught Kitata and was a couple of minutes behind the leaders.

Kipchoge and Kipruto were side-by-side through 35km in 1:41:30 and then Kipchoge began to make his move. He was a stride ahead at 36km and that increased to around five seconds over the next kilometre as the athletes made a turn and began running into a headwind. But he hung on to record the fastest marathon ever run in Japan by over a minute and claim a 33-second victory.

“I am really happy,” said two-time Olympic marathon winner Kipchoge. “I am excited to be here in Japan, especially after winning the Olympic Games in Sapporo. I really appreciated the crowd.”

Before the race Kipchoge had written 'ST:RO:NG' instead of numbers on his finish time prediction card and the 37-year-old felt he had achieved his aim.

“I said I wanted to run strong in Japan and I did, I ran a course record,” he said. “I am really happy I won another major marathon.”

Kosgei, too, has multiple major marathon wins to her name, having triumphed twice in London and twice in Chicago. After securing silver at the Olympics behind her compatriot Peres Jepchirchir, she finished fourth in London just two months later but was back on top in Tokyo.

The women's race record had been held by Lonah Chemtai Salpeter with the 2:17:45 she set on a slightly different course in 2020 and that time always looked under threat. The leaders were on 2:15:44 pace for the first downhill 5km and then passed 10km in 32:14.

By that point, Kosgei was running as part of a larger mixed group along with fellow women’s race leaders Gebreslase and Bekere, plus Kenya’s Angela Tanui and Ethiopia’s Hiwot Gebrekidan. A chase group featuring Ichiyama and her compatriot Hitomi Niiya, who won the first Tokyo Marathon in 2007, plus Ethiopia’s Helen Bekele and the USA’s 2020 London Marathon runner-up Sara Hall was 30 seconds back.

The same group of five led through 15km in 48:21 and reached half way in 1:08:06. At 25km, passed by the leaders in 1:20:48, chase group athletes Ichiyama and Hall remained on national record pace but those aims began to move out of reach a short while later.

Kosgei was still in control with Gebreslase tracking her, and the pair had broken away by 35km, with 1:53:08 on the clock. Kosgei missed her drink at that point but she didn’t seem to mind as she forged ahead while Gebreslase dropped off the pace. Kosgei had broken away by 37km and went on unchallenged to record another magnificent mark.

Bekere – who ran 2:18:18 when finishing third at last year’s London Marathon – came through to claim the runner’s up spot and improve her PB by 20 seconds while Gebreslase also had the run of her life to match her compatriot’s former PB of 2:18:18, building on her 2:20:09 debut performance in Berlin.

Tanui was fourth in 2:18:42 and Gebrekidan fifth in 2:19:10, while Ichiyama secured sixth in 2:21:02, Niiya seventh in 2:21:17 and Hall eighth in 2:22:56.

With their respective 2:05:28 and 2:21:02 performances, Suzuki and Ichiyama achieved a combined time of 4:26:30 – the fastest recorded combined result for a married couple running in the same race.

Before the race, Kosgei had said her target time was “a secret” and although she went on to record the third-fastest ever women's marathon, she later explained how she felt the wind in the latter stages of the race had prevented her from again attacking 2:14.

(03/05/2022) Views: 387 ⚡AMP
by World Athletics
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Tokyo Marathon

Tokyo Marathon

The Tokyo Marathon is an annual marathon sporting event in Tokyo, the capital of Japan. It is an IAAF Gold Label marathon and one of the six World Marathon Majors. Sponsored by Tokyo Metro, the Tokyo Marathon is an annual event in Tokyo, the capital of Japan. It is an IAAF Gold Label marathon and one of the six World...

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Here's Why You Should Watch the 2022 Tokyo Marathon

World record-holders Eliud Kipchoge and Brigid Kosgei headline the return of this World Major Marathon.

On Sunday, March 6, the Tokyo Marathon will finally take place after not having been run since March 2020. Nearly 25,000 athletes will storm the streets of Japan’s biggest city to chase the finish line and personal bests. 

The 2021 Tokyo Marathon was set for October last year, until the COVID-19 Delta variant forced postponement. Race officials decided to move the 2021 edition to March 6 this year and formally cancel the 2022 race.

How to Watch the 2022 Tokyo Marathon

WHAT: 2022 Tokyo Marathon

WHERE: Tokyo, Japan

WHEN: Sunday, March 6 in Tokyo. Saturday, March 5 in the United States. Professional wheelchair racers begin at 7:05 p.m. ET. The professional racers start at 7:10 p.m. EST. 

HOW TO WATCH: Flotrack will stream the event on Saturday, March 5, starting at 6:30 p.m. EST.

What to Watch For

Eliud Kipchoge Attempts Ninth World Major Marathon Win

World record-holder and two-time Olympic champion Eliud Kipchoge has already cemented his legacy. But he’s now chasing the goal of winning all six World Marathon Majors. He already owns gold medals from Berlin, Chicago, and London—leaving Boston, New York City, and Tokyo as the remaining stops. 

An abundance of talent joins Kipchoge on the start line. 2020 Tokyo Marathon winner Legese Birhanu of Ethiopia hopes to repeat as champion. Mosinet Geremew of Ethiopia has run 2:02:55, making him the fourth-fastest man in history, and will also challenge for the victory. Behind them are two others with sub-2:04 PRs: Amos Kipruto of Kenya and Tamirat Tola of Ethiopia. Japan’s chance for gold lies on the shoulders of Kengo Suzuki, who finished fourth at the Chicago Marathon last fall and owns a personal best of 2:04:56, which is the Japanese record.

Brigid Kosgei Headlines Women’s Field, Sara Hall Chases American Record

World record-holder Brigid Kosgei is the favorite thanks to her 2:14:04 personal best and Olympic silver medal from last summer. Three other women competing have broken 2:20 for the marathon: Angela Tanui of Kenya and Ashete Bekere and Hiwot Gebrekidan of Ethiopia. 

Coming off a half marathon American record in Houston, Sara Hall attempts to run under the 2:20 barrier for the first time. Doing so could scare Keira D’Amato’s U.S. record of 2:19:12, also set in Houston in January. 

Japan’s Mao Ichiyama boasts a top-10 finish at the Olympic marathon. With a 2:20:29 personal best, she’s the home country’s ringer for a podium spot—and potentially a national record.

 

 

(03/05/2022) Views: 388 ⚡AMP
by Runner’s World
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2022 Tokyo Marathon Women's Preview

The women’s race at the 2022 Tokyo Marathon has a little something for everyone. There’s Brigid Kosgei, the Kenyan world record holder attempting to reassert herself as the world’s best marathoner after Peres Jepchirchir claimed that title in 2021.

There’s Angela Tanui, the breakout star who won three marathons last year, capped by a 2:17:57 course record in Amsterdam. And for American fans, there’s Sara Hall, fresh off setting a US half marathon record in Houston in January and ready to mix it up with the best in the world on a flat, fast course.

Women Elite Entries:

Brigid Kosgei (Kenya) – 2:14:04 (Chicago 2019)

Angela Tanui (Kenya) – 2:17:57 (Amsterdam 2021)

Ashete Bekere (Ethiopia) – 2:18:18 (London 2021)

Hiwot Gebrekidan (Ethiopia) – 2:19:35 (Milan 2021)

Gotytom Gebreslase (Ethiopia) – 2:20:09 (Berlin 2021)

Mao Ichiyama (Wacoal) – 2:20:29 (Nagoya 2020)

Sara Hall (U.S.A.) – 2:20:32 (Marathon Project 2020)

Helen Bekele (Ethiopia) – 2:21:01 (Tokyo 2019)

Natsuki Omori (Daihatsu) – 2:28:38 (Nagoya 2021)

Shiho Kaneshige (GRlab Kanto) – 2:28:51 (Osaka Int’l 2020)

Hitomi Niiya (Sekisui Kagaku) – 2:30:58 (Nagoya 2009)

Miharu Shimokado (SID Group) – 2:32:48 (Osaka Int’l 2020)

Yui Okada (Otsuka Seiyaku) – 2:32:00 (Nagoya 2020)

Hitomi Mizuguchi (Uniqlo) – 2:32:33 (Osaka Int’l 2020)

Mai Fujisawa (Hokkaido Excel AC) – 2:35:52 (Kanazawa 2021)

Tomomi Sawahata (Sawahatters) – 2:36:45 (Osaka Int’l 2022)

Debut / Do-Over

Kaori Morita (Panasonic) – 1:10:28 (Nat’l Corp. Half 2021)

Rika Kaseda (Daihatsu) – 31:39.86 (Nat’l Championships 2020).

Can Brigid Kosgei Return to the Top?

From the fall of 2018 through the fall of 2020 — four marathon cycles — Brigid Kosgei was the best marathoner in the world. By the end of that stretch, the gap between Kosgei and everyone else was not close. Her 2:14:04 in Chicago in 2019 was 81 seconds faster than Paula Radcliffe‘s previous world record and almost three minutes faster than any active marathoner had ever run. In her next race, 2020 London, she ran 2:18:58 in miserable conditions on a day when none of the rest of the world’s best marathoners could crack 2:22. She was in her own marathon galaxy.

Last year, however, Kosgei came back to Earth. That’s usually what happens when someone becomes World #1 in the fickle event that is the marathon (well, unless your name is Eliud Kipchoge). Kosgei was far from ordinary in 2021 — she still claimed second at the Olympics and fourth in London (in 2:18:40) just eight weeks later — but she was not the all-conquering giant of the previous three years. By the end of last year, the discussion about the world’s greatest female marathoner featured two women, and Kosgei wasn’t among them (right now it’s Olympic/NYC champ Peres Jepchirchir or London champ Joyciline Jepkosgei, who will race each other next month in Boston).

A win in Tokyo would nudge Kosgei back into that conversation, and she will start as the favorite on Sunday. Remember, after that dominant stretch from 2018-20, talk was starting to heat up that Kosgei could be the best marathoner the world has ever seen. That’s the trajectory she was on, and she only just turned 28 years old. If she can return to that sort of form, she’ll be your champion in Tokyo.

The Other Women Who Could Win

The top challenger to Kosgei in Tokyo is Angel Tanui, who emerged from relative obscurity to become one of the world’s top marathoners in 2021. Tanui, now 29, began last year as a serviceable road runner with pbs of 31:51/67:16/2:25:18 but wound up winning marathons in Dhaka (Bangladesh), Tuscany, and Amsterdam and finish as LetsRun’s third-ranked marathoner in the world. Tanui was only in Amsterdam because visa issues had prevented her from running Boston the previous week, but it certainly didn’t affect her race as she ran 2:17:57 to smash the course record. 2:17 doesn’t mean what it used to — these days, it’s barely fast enough to rank in the top 10 all-time — but it’s still plenty quick and signals Tanui as a major player.

Another woman to watch on Sunday is Ethiopia’s Ashete Bekere. She was only 7th in her last visit to Tokyo in 2016, but since then she’s won big-time races in Valencia (2018), Rotterdam (2019), and Berlin (2019). In her last marathon, she ran a pb of 2:18:18 to finish third in London, defeating Kosgei in the process (though Kosgei was just eight weeks removed from the Olympics). Clearly, Bekere has what it takes to win a major.

The other two notables in the field outside of Sara Hall — we’ll get to her in a minute — are the women who went 1-2 in Berlin last fall. Berlin was one of the weaker majors in 2021, but it was hard not to be impressed by Ethiopia’s Gotytom Gebreslase, who won the race convincingly in her debut in 2:20:09. Gebreslase is coached by the famed Haji Adilo, and he told Women’s Running he’s been impressed by what he’s seen recently:

“[Gebreslase] has even made big advancements in her training since Berlin,” Adilo says. “She set a personal best in the half marathon in December [1:05:36 in Bahrain], and if the weather and conditions are good in Tokyo, she could do something very special there.”

The runner-up behind Gebreslase in Berlin, Hiwot Gebrekidan, also had a good year in 2021 as she ran a pb of 2:19:35 to win Milan in May. But against this Tokyo field, 2:19 may not be good enough to challenge for the win.

Sara Hall Chases a Fast Time

Sara Hall running Tokyo is something we don’t get often: one of America’s top marathoners racing against the best in the world in a fast international marathon. Last month, Molly Seidel told Track & Field News that American pros “are gonna get our asses handed to us nine times outta ten, if the course is fast.”

(03/04/2022) Views: 454 ⚡AMP
by Jonathan Gault
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Tokyo Marathon

Tokyo Marathon

The Tokyo Marathon is an annual marathon sporting event in Tokyo, the capital of Japan. It is an IAAF Gold Label marathon and one of the six World Marathon Majors. Sponsored by Tokyo Metro, the Tokyo Marathon is an annual event in Tokyo, the capital of Japan. It is an IAAF Gold Label marathon and one of the six World...

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Kiplimo breaks world half marathon record in Lisbon

Uganda’s Jacob Kiplimo broke the world record* at the EDP Lisbon Half Marathon on Sunday (21), clocking 57:31 at the World Athletics Label road race.

The world half marathon champion won by more than two minutes and took one second off the previous world record set by Kenya’s Kibiwott Kandie in Valencia last year.

Kiplimo, who finished third in the 10,000m and fifth in the 5000m at the Tokyo Olympics earlier this year, passed through the first 5km in 13:40, having already dropped the rest of the field.

By the time he reached 10km in 27:05, he had a lead of about one minute over the chase pack and was well on schedule to break Kandie’s world record.

Kiplimo passed through 15km in 40:27, the fastest time ever recorded for the distance and indicative of a sub-57-minute finish. With no nearby competitors to work off, Kiplimo’s pace dropped slightly in the closing stages, but he managed to just finish inside the world record, crossing the line in 57:31.

Ethiopia’s Esa Huseyidin Mohamed finished second in 59:39, just ahead of compatriot Gerba Beyata Dibaba, who was given the same time for third place. The top nine men all finished inside 60 minutes.

The women’s race was a close affair as Ethiopia’s Tsehay Gemechu won in 1:06:06 from Kenya’s Daisy Cherotich (1:06:15) and Joyce Chepkemoi (1:06:19).

Leading results

Women1 Tsehay Gemechu (ETH) 1:06:062 Daisy Cherotich (KEN) 1:06:153 Joyce Chepkemoi (KEN) 1:06:194 Hiwot Gebrekidan (ETH) 1:08:005 Vibian Chepkirui (KEN) 1:08:026 Ethlemahu Sintayehu Dessi (ETH) 1:08:167 Yitayish Mekonene Agidew (ETH) 1:08:188 Jess Piasecki (GBR) 1:09:449 Tsige Haileslase Abreha (ETH) 1:10:3110 Debash Kelali Desta (ETH) 1:11:01

Men1 Jacob Kiplimo (UGA) 57:312 Esa Huseyidin Mohamed (ETH) 59:393 Gerba Beyata Dibaba (ETH) 59:394 Hillary Kipkoech (KEN) 59:415 Ibrahim Hassan (DJI) 59:416 Milkesa Mengesha (ETH) 59:487 Antenayehu Dagnachaw (ETH) 59:488 Edmond Kipngetich (KEN) 59:499 Isaac Kipsang (KEN) 59:5210 Solomon Berihu Weldeslassie (ETH) 1:00:00

(11/21/2021) Views: 563 ⚡AMP
by World Athletics
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EDP HALF MARATHON OF LISBON

EDP HALF MARATHON OF LISBON

EDP Lisbon Half Marathonis an annual internationalhalf marathoncompetition which is contested every March inLisbon,Portugal. It carries World Athletics Gold Label Road Racestatus. The men's course record of 57:31 was set byJacob Kiplimoin 2021, which was the currentworld recordfor the half marathon distance. Kenyanrunners have been very successful in the competition, accounting for over half of the total winners, withTegla Loroupetaking...

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Debutante Gebreslase and Adola triumph in Berlin

It may have been her marathon debut, but Gotytom Gebreslase looked anything but inexperienced on her way to winning the BMW Berlin Marathon, crossing the finish line of the World Athletics Elite Platinum Label road race in 2:20:09 on Sunday (26).

Just moments earlier, fellow Ethiopian Guye Adola won an enthralling tactical men’s race in 2:05:45, seeing off a late-race challenge from Kenya’s Bethwel Yegon after dropping Ethiopian legend Kenenisa Bekele a few kilometres prior.

The 47th edition of the race, which is part of the Abbott World Marathon Majors Series, took place under strict hygiene regulations. With 24,796 runners from 139 nations, the race was the biggest marathon in the world since the start of the coronavirus pandemic.

The men had been operating at world record pace for the first half, while the leading women were close to course record pace. With temperatures above 20C during the final part of the race, the pace dropped in the closing stages of both contests, but Gebreslase and Adola both had just enough in reserve to hold on to victory.

Gebreslase was part of a large lead pack that went through 5km in 16:30 and 10km in 33:03. Six women were in the group, including Ethiopia’s Hiwot Gebrekidan who was looking to improve on her world-leading 2:19:35 run from Milan earlier in the year.

By the time the pack reached half way in 1:09:19, just four women remained in contention: Gebrekidan, Gebreslase, fellow Ethiopian Helen Tola and Kenya’s Fancy Chemutai. Their split suggested a finishing time inside 2:19, but the conditions soon started to get tougher.

Within the space of a few kilometres, Chemutai and Tola had been dropped, reducing the race to a two-woman Ethiopian battle between Gebrekidan and Gebreslase. The latter, feeling surprisingly good on her debut marathon, started to test the water and edged ahead of her compatriot over the next few kilometres, opening up a 13-second gap by 35km, reached in 1:54:54.

Her split at that point still pointed towards a sub-2:19 finish, but Gebreslase’s pace dropped significantly over the next five kilometres, which she covered in 17:40. Lucky for her, Gebrekidan was struggling even more, widening the gap between the pair. And Tola was now more than two minutes adrift of Gebrekidan in third.

Gebreslase continued to pull away in the final few kilometres, winning comfortably in 2:20:09, the eighth fastest winning time recorded in Berlin. Gebrekidan held on to second place in 2:21:23 and Tola completed the Ethiopian podium sweep in 2:23:05.

The men’s race may not have resulted in a world record as had been hyped in the days leading up to the event, but it eventually became an enthralling three-way contest between Bekele, Adola and Yegon.

The opening pace was swift as the six-man lead pack breezed through 5km in 14:22 and 10km in 28:47. Bekele and Adola formed one third of that group, while Yegon bided his time further down the field, passing through 10km in 29:40 as part of the larger chase pack.

Shortly after passing through 15km in 43:12 – still well inside world record pace – Bekele started to lose contact with the rest of the lead group, who went on to reach the half-way point in 1:00:48. Bekele, meanwhile, covered the first half in 1:01:00, which was the pre-determined target for the pacemakers.

Over the course of the next five kilometres, though, Bekele worked his way back to the front. The 30km split of 1:27:48 (2:03:30 pace) essentially confirmed that the world record would live to see another day, but the race was shaping up to be a three-way battle between Bekele, Adola and Kenya’s Philemon Kacheran.

Kacheran didn’t last too much longer in that trio, however, and Bekele started to struggle again as Adola was gritting his teeth out in front. Further behind, however, Yegon continued to make his way through the field. Having been seventh at 20km and sixth at 25km, the Kenyan moved into fourth place at 35km, just 17 seconds behind Adola.

One mile later, Yegon passed Bekele to move into second place. Another kilometre after, he joined Adola at the front. But with the temperature now above 20C, Yegon was unable to maintain that momentum. A final surge from Adola at 40km was enough to see off Yegon’s challenge, allowing the Ethiopian to open up a decisive gap.

Adola, the runner-up in 2017, went on to win in 2:05:45 with Yegon following 29 seconds later to take the runner-up spot in a PB of 2:06:14. Bekele was third in 2:06:47.

“I thought before the race that I could beat Kenenisa,” said Adola, who finished second in Eliud Kipchoge in the German capital four years ago. “It was so hot, my feet were burning.”

Bekele, meanwhile, appeared slightly disappointed but confirmed there’s still more to come from the three-time Olympic gold medallist. “The big problem for me was the lack of training because of the pandemic,” he said. “I just couldn't do as well as I hoped. That does not mean my career is over.”

(09/26/2021) Views: 469 ⚡AMP
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BMW Berlin Marathon

BMW Berlin Marathon

The story of the BERLIN-MARATHON is a story of the development of road running. When the first BERLIN-MARATHON was started on 13th October 1974 on a minor road next to the stadium of the organisers‘ club SC Charlottenburg Berlin 286 athletes had entered. The first winners were runners from Berlin: Günter Hallas (2:44:53), who still runs the BERLIN-MARATHON today, and...

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Gebrekidan sets sights on course record

An attack on the women’s course record – which currently stands to Gladys Cherono at 2:18:11 – is looking increasingly likely in Berlin on Sunday.

Three women with sub-2:22 PBs will take to the startline, including world leader Hiwot Gebrekidan of Ethiopia, who clocked a PB of 2:19:35 in Milan in May.

“I’ve been preparing for the BMW Berlin Marathon for a long time and want to run my personal best on Sunday,” said the 26-year-old, who will be contesting her first ever World Marathon Majors race.

When pressed as to what pace she would like, Gebrekidan said: “I’d actually like to hold back in the first half. But I nevertheless plan to go through halfway in just under 69 minutes.”

Such a split at halfway would put Gebrekidan not only in contention for the course record but also the Ethiopian record, currently held by Worknesh Degefa with her time of 2:17:41 in Dubai in 2019.

Fellow Ethiopian Shure Demise also has a personal best in her sights. She is a highly experienced marathon runner, having run a dozen of them. “I’ve spoken with other women runners and know what a fast course is Berlin. I have high expectations for myself and want to break my personal record,” said Demise, whose best currently stands at 2:20:59 and could well go under 2:20 for the first time.

“2:20 remains a breakthrough target for women in the marathon,” said race director Mark Milde. “We’ll have to wait and see what times are actually run. But a pace like that (69 minutes at half way) would certainly suit us. And a course record would be great.”

Fancy Chemutai, a late addition to the field, also has high hopes for Sunday’s race. The Kenyan has a best of 2:24:27 and will be running only her second marathon. Her half marathon best of 1:04:52 – which makes her the seventh fastest woman of all time – suggests she still has a lot of untapped potential at the full marathon distance. No other woman on the Berlin start list has such a fast half marathon performance.

Gotytom Gebreslase could be another one to watch on Sunday. The Ethiopian, who won the world U18 3000m title back in 2011, will be making her marathon debut. Given her PBs of 1:07:52 for the half marathon and 14:57.33 for 5000m, the 26-year-old could be in contention for a podium place.

About 25,000 runners from 139 countries are expected to take part in the 47th edition of the Berlin Marathon. Although more than 90% of participants have been vaccinated against the coronavirus, the race will take place under strict hygiene regulations.

“For months our challenge has been to organise a safe BMW Berlin Marathon, and we’ve achieved our objective,” said Jürgen Lock, the general manager of race organiser SCC Events. “It’s a very good feeling; we’ve arrived at the new reality.”

(09/25/2021) Views: 374 ⚡AMP
by World Athletics
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The women’s race at the BMW Berlin Marathon on Sunday is looking increasingly like an attack on the course record

The best time to date was set three years ago when the Kenyan Gladys Cherono ran 2:18:11. Half-a-dozen women will be on the start line who have run under 2:25 and among them is the Ethiopian Hiwot Gebrekidan, the fastest women in the world this year thanks to her personal best of 2:19:35 in winning the Milan title in April.

In the light of the continung Corona pandemic the number of starters for this year has been considerably reduced. Around 25,000 runners are expected to compete on Sunday. The BMW Berlin Marathon will take place under strict hygiene rules.

Any participant on the start line must have been vaccinated, or recovered from the virus or be able to produce a negative PCR test. Over 90% of runners entered have been vaccinated. Spectators on the course will also be requested to maintain social distance and wear a mask covering nose and mouth.

“I’ve been preparing for the BMW Berlin Marathon for a long time and want to run my personal best on Sunday,” said Hiwot Gebrekidan at Thursday’s press conference in Berlin. When pressed as to what pace she would like, the 26-year-old answered: “I’d actually like to hold back in the first half. But I nevertheless plan to go through halfway in just under 69 minutes.” Such a split at halfway would put Hiwot Gebrekidan not only in contention for the course record but also the Ethiopian national record, currently held by Worknesh Degefa with her time of 2:17:41 in Dubai in 2019.

Her fellow Ethiopian Shure Demise also has a personal best in her sights. She is a highly experienced marathon runner, having run a dozen of them. “I’ve spoken with other women runners and know what a fast course is Berlin. I have high expectations for myself and want to break my personal record,” said Shure Demise, whose best currently stands at 2:20:59 and could well go under 2:20 for the first time.

“2:20 remains a breakthrough target for women in the marathon,” said the race director Mark Milde, adding in response to Hiwot Gebrekidan’s announcement of going for a super-fast time at halfway: “We’ll have to wait and see what times are actually run. But a pace like that would certainly suit us. And a course record would be great.”

A woman who has been a late addition to the elite field in Berlin but is capable of a surprise is Fancy Chemutai. The Kenyan has a best of 2:24:27 and will be running only her second marathon. If she were able to convert her enormous potential to good effect in the classic distance she may well be in contention for the win. Her half marathon best of 64:52 makes her the seventh fastest woman at the distance of all time. No other woman on the Berlin start list has such a fast half marathon performance.

Rabea Schöneborn from the local club LG Nord Berlin will be running a marathon for the first time in her home town. The 27-year-old improved her best to 2:27:03 in April in her second race at the distance, missing selection for the Olympics by just nine seconds. This inadvertently created the opportunity of turning that preparation to potentially good effect at the BMW Berlin Marathon. “Berlin is definitely a highlight, I’m really looking forward to Sunday. Up to now I’ve only had the experience of elite marathons but now I can see and feel what’s it like to be part of a big city marathon. Having spectators will definitely give me a lift,” said Rabea Schöneborn.

The Berlin athlete hopes to take advantage of the fast course and what looks likely to be excellent weather conditions to improve her best time. “I always try to hold back a little so I can run the second half faster. That’s also the plan on Sunday,” explained Rabea Schöneborn. Nevertheless, she is still looking at a fast halfway split: “Something between 73:10 and 73:20 is the plan.”

(09/24/2021) Views: 436 ⚡AMP
by AIMS
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BMW Berlin Marathon

BMW Berlin Marathon

The story of the BERLIN-MARATHON is a story of the development of road running. When the first BERLIN-MARATHON was started on 13th October 1974 on a minor road next to the stadium of the organisers‘ club SC Charlottenburg Berlin 286 athletes had entered. The first winners were runners from Berlin: Günter Hallas (2:44:53), who still runs the BERLIN-MARATHON today, and...

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Kenenisa Bekele will lead the entries for Sunday’s BMW Berlin Marathon

When Kenenisa Bekele lines up for the BMW Berlin Marathon this weekend (Sept 26) it marks the beginning of an unprecedented period of marathon racing. Due to Covid-related postponements, five of the six Marathon Majors will be staged within a 42-day period. If you’re a fan of the classic 26.2-mile distance, you are in for a feast.

Bekele is clearly excited by the prospect as he is racing in not just one but two of these races. After Berlin on Sunday he will attempt to recover and re-boot before tackling the New York City Marathon in early November.

Here is how the autumn marathon period plays out…

Sept 26 – BerlinOct 3 – LondonOct 10 – ChicagoOct 11 – BostonNov 7 – New York

Tokyo Marathon, which is also one of the Marathon Majors, was due to take place on October 17 too, but has been called off due to the pandemic. However the TCS Amsterdam Marathon is still on October 17 – and this Dutch race often sees fast times.

First comes Berlin, though. Bekele has not raced since March last year and during this time he has seen his world 5000m and 10,000m records fall to Joshua Cheptegei. Last October he was due to race in London but withdrew on the eve of the race with a calf injury. He is now aged 39 but don’t write him off. People thought he was a spent force in 2019 but he came within two seconds of the world record with 2:01:41 in Berlin.

“I will come back with good energy and motivation,” says Bekele. “The last race in Berlin motivated me a lot, so I hope I will fulfil my plan this year.”

Bekele will be among around 25,000 runners in Berlin as mass participation road running emerges from the pandemic. His opposition on Sunday includes Guye Adola, an Ethiopian who ran the world’s fastest ever debut marathon of 2:03:46 in Berlin four years ago but has struggled to improve since.

There is also Eliud Kiptanui of Kenya, who has run 2:05:21, plus a further eight men who have run inside 2:07 such as Philemon Kacheran and Festus Talam of Kenya, Olika Adugna and Tadu Abate of Ethiopia, plus Hidekazu Hijikata of Japan.

Adugna won his debut marathon in Dubai in 2:06:15 while Hijikata took the Lake Biwa Marathon victory earlier this year.

The women’s race, meanwhile, includes Hiwot Gebrekidan, who won the Milan Marathon this year in 2:19:35, plus fellow Ethiopian Shure Demise, together with Kenyans Fancy Chemutai and Purity Rionoripo.

Just seven days after Berlin, the Virgin Money London Marathon takes place with the fields led by women’s world record-holder Brigid Kosgei together with fellow Kenyan Joyciline Jepkosgei and Ethiopians Roza Dereje and Birhane Dibaba.

The men’s race in London features Ethiopians Shura Kitata, Mosinet Geremew and Birhanu Legese plus Kenyans Titus Ekiru and Evans Chebet, whereas Brits like Charlotte Purdue and Jonny Mellor will create plenty of home interest.

Chicago includes world champion Ruth Chepngetich of Kenya in the women’s race alongside American hope Sarah Hall, while another home nation hope, Galen Rupp, takes on Ethiopians Getaneh Molla and Seifu Tura in the men’s race.

 

(09/21/2021) Views: 468 ⚡AMP
by Athletics Weekly
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BMW Berlin Marathon

BMW Berlin Marathon

The story of the BERLIN-MARATHON is a story of the development of road running. When the first BERLIN-MARATHON was started on 13th October 1974 on a minor road next to the stadium of the organisers‘ club SC Charlottenburg Berlin 286 athletes had entered. The first winners were runners from Berlin: Günter Hallas (2:44:53), who still runs the BERLIN-MARATHON today, and...

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2021 Berlin marathon to atract 25,000 runners

Berlin Marathon organizers expect around 25,000 runners to take part on Sunday, making it the biggest marathon since the start of the coronavirus pandemic.

The event was cancelled last year because of the global health crisis but returns on the streets of the German capital.

"The time is ripe for us to send a signal to the outside world that we are still a sports metropolis," Juergen Lock, managing director of organiser SCC Events, said.

He expects more than 90 per cent of participants to be either fully vaccinated or to have recovered from a coronavirus infection.

All others must undergo a PCR test no earlier than 48 hours before the start.

Wearing masks in the start and finish areas is mandatory for runners, as well as for all spectators along the 42.195km course.

"All runners can run liberated," Lock said.

With two smaller events in recent weeks including a half marathon, the organizers have gained experience for the big event, which will be held on the same day as the German general election.

The most prominent runner is Ethiopian Kenenisa Bekele.

The 39-year-old missed the world record of Olympic marathon champion Eliud Kipchoge of Kenya by only two seconds in his victory in 2019 in two hours one minute 41 seconds.

Kipchoge set the mark in Berlin in 2018.

The women's field is led by Hiwot Gebrekidan, the Ethiopian who ran a year's best 2:19:35 in Milan.

(09/20/2021) Views: 642 ⚡AMP
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BMW Berlin Marathon

BMW Berlin Marathon

The story of the BERLIN-MARATHON is a story of the development of road running. When the first BERLIN-MARATHON was started on 13th October 1974 on a minor road next to the stadium of the organisers‘ club SC Charlottenburg Berlin 286 athletes had entered. The first winners were runners from Berlin: Günter Hallas (2:44:53), who still runs the BERLIN-MARATHON today, and...

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Hiwot Gebrekidan and Kenenisa Bekele will lead powerful Ethiopian Challenge in Berlin

The BMW BERLIN-MARATHON will get underway on Sunday, September 26 with high quality elite fields headed by the Ethiopian superstar Kenenisa Bekele on his fourth appearance in Germany’s biggest and most spectacular marathon, while his compatriot Hiwot Gebrekidan will run in Berlin’s women’s field for the first time. Gebrekidan is currently the fastest female marathon runner in the world this year. The BMW BERLIN-MARATHON is part of the Abbott World Marathon Majors and a Platinum Label Road Race, awarded by World Athletics, the international governing body of athletics.

Kenenisa Bekele is 39 now and will be running the BMW BERLIN-MARATHON for the fourth time. He won the race in 2016 but dropped out the next year and returned in 2019 to triumph once again. In both victories the Ethiopian missed the then world record by a matter of seconds.

In terms of his achievements on the track and cross country, Kenenisa Bekele is the greatest long distance runner of all time. The multiple world record holder won the 5,000m at the 2008 Olympic Games as well as at the 2009 World Championships, took the 10,000m title at the Olympics in 2004 and 2008 as well as at the World Championships in 2003, 2005, 2007 and 2009. In addition, he has won eleven gold medals at the World Cross Country Championships.

At the same time, Kenenisa Bekele’s marathon career has been by no means a smooth one. He has failed to finish three of his six races at the classic distance, including an attempt on the world record in Dubai in 2017 and Berlin later in the same year.

Yet on two occasions Kenenisa Bekele was able to convert his enormous potential to the marathon though there was still an element of disappointment attached, since he missed breaking the world record by a handful of seconds each time. In 2016 in Berlin he went within six seconds of the then global best, improving his own best to 2:03:03. Two years ago Bekele won again, this time running 2:01:41, two seconds outside the world record which his Kenyan rival Eliud Kipchoge had improved to 2:01:39 in the meantime. This achievement in 2019 means the Ethiopian is the second fastest marathon runner in history. It may well be that the BMW BERLIN-MARATHON on September 26 is his last chance to break the world record at the distance. “I’m looking forward to the race in the BMW BERLIN-MARATHON and all my training has been with this in mind. It’s gone well. I am doing everything to make sure my preparation is perfect,” said Kenenisa Bekele.

Ethiopia’s superstar will face two strong compatriots among his rivals. Guye Adola made an outstanding marathon debut in 2017 beside the River Spree with second place in 2:03:46. His time was record for a marathon debutant and Adola even put the eventual winner, Eliud Kipchoge, under pressure, leading the great Kenyan until shortly before 40 kilometres. Another Ethiopian who surprised many on his marathon debut is Olika Adugna. He will be running in Berlin on September 26 with a best of 2:06:15 from winning debut in Dubai in 2020.

The women’s field includes the fastest marathoner in the world this year, Ethiopia’s Hiwot Gebrekidan, who won the Milan Marathon in a personal best of 2:19:35 in April. Purity Rionoripo of Kenya (pb 2:20:39) and the Ethiopian Shure Demise (pb 2:20:59) should also be relied upon to offer strong challenges.

More information is available online at: Berlin-Marathon.com.

(09/07/2021) Views: 511 ⚡AMP
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BMW Berlin Marathon

BMW Berlin Marathon

The story of the BERLIN-MARATHON is a story of the development of road running. When the first BERLIN-MARATHON was started on 13th October 1974 on a minor road next to the stadium of the organisers‘ club SC Charlottenburg Berlin 286 athletes had entered. The first winners were runners from Berlin: Günter Hallas (2:44:53), who still runs the BERLIN-MARATHON today, and...

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Ekiru and Gebrekidan break Italian all-comers’ records in Milan

Kenya’s Titus Ekiru and Ethiopia’s Hiwot Gebrekidan recorded world-leading times of 2:02:57 and 2:19:35 to break the Italian all-comers’ records at the Generali Milano Marathon, a World Athletics Label road race, on Sunday (16).

It was Ekiru’s second victory in Milan, having won in 2019 in 2:04:46, the previous Italian all-comers’ record. Gebrekidan, meanwhile, was competing in Italy for the first time and was rewarded with a four-minute PB.

This year’s race, held in ideal 13C temperatures, was staged on a 7.5km circuit in front of the Castello Sforzesco in the heart of Milan.

In the men’s race, the leading pack of 10 athletes set a consistent pace in the first half, passing 5km in 14:47, 10km in 29:28 and 15km in 44:13. Leading South African runner Stephen Mokoka, acting as a pacemaker in Milan, reached the half-way mark in 1:01:48.

Ekiru started to push the pace after 30km, covering the next five-kilometre segment in 14:11 and the following one in 14:34. He maintained that pace to the end and, having covered the second half in 1:01:09, went on to cross the finish line in 2:02:57.

The 29-year-old now moves to fifth on the world all-time list, level with former world record-holder Dennis Kimetto.

The first five men finished inside the previous Italian all-comers’ record. Reuben Kipyego finished second in 2:03:55 ahead of Barnabas Kiptum (2:04:17), 2018 Milan Marathon winner Seifu Tura from Ethiopia (2:04:29), Leul Gebrselassie from Ethiopia (2:04:31), and Gabriel Gerald Geay, who set a Tanzanian record of 2:04:55.

“At 20 km I felt in very good shape and I tried to push the pace,” said Ekiru, the 2019 African Games half marathon champion. “I feel emotional. Maybe I can run 2:01 in the future.”

Unlike the men’s contest, the women’s race was a one-runner affair with Gebrekidan making a break in the early stages.

After covering the first 5km in 16:43 as part of a leading pack, the 26-year-old Ethiopian made a break and went through the half-way point inside 70 minutes with a lead of 20 seconds, hinting at a finishing time inside 2:20.

By the time she reached 30km in 1:38:28, Gebrekidan’s lead over Kenya’s Racheal Mutgaa had grown to 84 seconds. Gebrekidan’s pace dropped only slightly in the second half and she held on to win in 2:19:35, breaking the previous world-leading time and Italian all-comers’ record of2:20:08 set by Kenya’s Angela Tanui in Siena last month.

"I trained very well and I prepared for this race at the Istanbul Half Marathon," said Gebrekidan, whose previous PB of 2:23:50 was set at the 2019 Guangzhou Marathon. "I will celebrate this win with my family."

Mutgaa went on to finish second in 2:22:50 ahead of Bahrain’s Eunice Chumba (2:23:10). With the first seven women finishing inside 2:25, it was the deepest ever women’s marathon held in Italy.

(05/16/2021) Views: 623 ⚡AMP
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Milano Marathon

Milano Marathon

Passion is what allows us to go beyond our limits. It’s what makes us run when our heath is bursting in our chest, it’s whats makes our legs move even if they’re worn out. It’s passion against sacrifice, and the winner will be declared though hard training, hearth and concentration. Milano Marathon has been presented in the futuristic Generali Tower,...

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Benard Cheruiyot Sang and Diana Chemtai Kipyogei of Kenya won in the men’s and women’s category respectively in Sunday’s Istanbul Marathon.

The world’s only intercontinental marathon, in addition to being in the World Athletics' Gold category, the 42.195-kilometer (26.2-mile) event was run without spectators this year to protect against the transmission of COVID-19.

Sang completed the race at 2 hours, 11 minutes and 49 seconds, his personal best. He was followed by fellow Kenyan Felix Kimutai at 2:12:00. Ethiopia's Zewudu Hailu Bekele took third, finishing in 2:12:23.

Diana Chemtai Kipyogei won the top women's title by completing the race in 2:22:06. Ethiopia's Hiwot Gebrekidan and Tigist Memuye secured the second and third spots with running times of 2:24:30 and 2:37:52 respectively.

In a separate event for local athletes, Yavuz AÄŸralı won the marathon's Turkish championship by completing the course at 2:19:23. In women’s, Tubay Erdal, who took sixth in the general category, won the Turkish championship by finishing the race in 2:41:11.

The marathon reversed its course for the first time this year. Instead of starting from the Asian side of the city, athletes took off from the European side. Another change to this year’s race was crossing the July 15 Martyrs’ Bridge over the Bosporus twice this year.

The marathon began at Yenikapı, a venue allocated for large-scale rallies, on the city’s European side, to give more space to runners amid the pandemic. Athletes then crossed a route straddling in front of the city’s ancient city walls before reaching the iconic Galata Bridge. They then headed to BeÅŸiktaÅŸ and climbed Barbaros Boulevard, a long uphill stretch needed to reach the bridge. After a U-turn at Altunizade on the Asian side, they returned to Europe to wrap up the race.

The pandemic forced organizers to scrap the 15-kilometer race and an 8-kilometer “public” run. Instead, participants were given the opportunity to “Run Alone, With Us” in which they could take part in virtual races of 5, 10 or 15 kilometers.

There were also a pandemic-limited number of participants, as only 4,000 people ran the race compared with around 37,000 last year.

Athletes were required to keep a distance of 1.5 meters between them at the starting line and took off at five-second intervals in different groups to prevent crowding. They were only allowed to remove their masks after the marathon began.

 

(11/09/2020) Views: 1,162 ⚡AMP
by Daily Sabah
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N Kolay Istanbul Marathon

N Kolay Istanbul Marathon

At the beginning, the main intention was simply to organise a marathon event. Being a unique city in terms of history and geography, Istanbul deserved a unique marathon. Despite the financial and logistical problems, an initial project was set up for the Eurasia Marathon. In 1978, the officials were informed that a group of German tourists would visit Istanbul the...

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Ethiopia's Hailu Zewdu and Diana Chemtai lead their respective fields for the Istanbul Marathon as the World Athletics Gold Label road race series resumes in Turkey's largest city on Sunday

Zewdu made his marathon debut at the Dubai Marathon in January, clocking 2:06:31 to finish 10th. He'll be joined by compatriot Tsegaye Getachew, the next fastest in the field with a 2:06:50 career best, set at the Valencia Marathon last year where he finished eighth. Earlier in the year Getachew won the Dalian Marathon in 2:11:25, his first and to date only international victory over the distance.

Felix Kimutai, with 2:09:23 credentials, leads the Kenyan contingent. The 31-year-old won here in 2018 and finished third one year ago.

Cosmas Birech, who clocked 2:08:03 to win the Rome Marathon in 2018, is also in the field, along with Edwin Soi, the 2008 Olympic bronze medallist over 5000m, who'll be making his marathon debut.

Local hopes will rest with Yavuz Agrali, who set his 2:10:41 lifetime best in Seville in February.

Chemtai, who made her marathon debut last year, leads the women's field. The 26-year-old Kenyan clocked 2:22:07 at last year's Ljubljana Marathon, finishing third. She has a 1:07:07 half marathon best from 2018.

She'll face a pair of formidable Ethiopians, Hiwot Gebrekidan and Yeshi Kalayu Chekole. Gebrekidan has a 2:23:50 career best set in Guangzhou last year while Chekole, 23, has a 2:24:28 best set in Abu Dhabi, also one year ago.

Strict safety measures in place

Organisers have put several measures in place to ensure the safety of all runners, beginning with a cap of 3000 participants.

The start and finish area was moved to a massive open space to ensure a safe distance between the runners both before and after the race. The area will be secured, barring entry to anyone without a clearance code provided by Turkey's Ministry of Health. A negative test for Covid-19 was required to enter the race.

All participants, including the elite athletes, will be required to wear face masks at the start, and will be able to dispose of them in designated boxes at 20 metres, 200 metres and one kilometres from the start.

The gun will sound the start of the elite race at 9am. The mass race will follow with groups of four runners starting every five seconds.

The change in course means that this year, instead of starting on the Asian side of the city and finishing on the European side, runners will first cross from Europe to Asia and then back again. With the change to a much more difficult course, organisers don't expect the race records - Daniel Kipkore Kibet's 2:09:44 set in 2019 and Ruth Chepngetich's 2:18:35 from 2018 - to be under threat.

The accompanying shorter races that regularly attract up to 70,000 participants were cancelled this year.

(11/07/2020) Views: 737 ⚡AMP
by World Athletics
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N Kolay Istanbul Marathon

N Kolay Istanbul Marathon

At the beginning, the main intention was simply to organise a marathon event. Being a unique city in terms of history and geography, Istanbul deserved a unique marathon. Despite the financial and logistical problems, an initial project was set up for the Eurasia Marathon. In 1978, the officials were informed that a group of German tourists would visit Istanbul the...

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Hiwot Gebrekidan and Gebretsadik Abraha took an Ethiopian double at the Guangzhou Marathon, smashing the course records

Hiwot Gebrekidan and Gebretsadik Abraha took an Ethiopian double at the Guangzhou Marathon, smashing the course records at the World Athletics Gold Label road race on Sunday (8).

The 24-year-old Gebrekidan enjoyed a comfortable sole lead before 30km and wrapped up her convincing victory with a lifetime best of 2:23:50, smashing the 2:25:12 course record set by compatriot Rahma Tusa in 2017.

Helped by a pacemaker, the women’s race was soon reduced to a duel between Gebrekidan and Kenya’s Celestine Chepchirchir before the 5km water tables. The duo led side-by-side and when they passed 25km in 1:24:38, they were already nearly five minutes ahead of the chasers and well on track to attack the course record.

After a further two kilometres, the in-form Ethiopian broke clear from Chepchirchir and continued widening the gap until the finish.

It is Gebrekidan’s second title over the classic distance following her victory two years ago at Lake Tiberias where she achieved her previous PB of 2:25:45.

The 23-year-old Chepchirchir, who set her PB of 2:24:48 in Seoul nine months ago, finished second in 2:27:10 while local runner Zhang Meixia finished as a remote third finisher with a career-best time of 2:32:01.

The top six finishers in the men’s race all beat the 2:10:01 course record set by Morocco’s Abdellah Tagharrafet in 2015.

The 27-year-old Abraha emerged victorious from a three-man battle in the last 10 kilometres to take the top honours in 2:08:04, which is the fastest time achieved by the former Prague and Marrakesh marathon winner since 2014.

Abraha, whose personal best of 2:06:23 was registered back in 2012, patiently hid himself in a lead pack of more than 10 runners that passed the 10km mark in 30:27 and 15km in 46:03.

The leaders were trimmed to 10 by 25km in 1:16:11 and further cut to six after another five kilometres in 1:31:38. Abraha then started his powerful charge, with only Kenya’s Mike Kiptum and Emmanuel Naibei managing to keep up with his pace by 32km.

The 27-year-old Kiptum, a 2:06:22 performer, quit the title contest before 40km. Abraha waited for another kilometre to finally pull clear and never looked back before hitting home in style.

Naibei knocked nearly two minutes off his PB to take the second place in 2:08:27. Kiptum held off a strong challenge from Chinese runner Dong Guojian in the last kilometre to notch the third place with a margin of just two seconds in 2:08:58.

(12/09/2019) Views: 1,090 ⚡AMP
by World Athletics
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Guangzhou International Marathon

Guangzhou International Marathon

The Guangzhou Marathon was launched in 2012 and certified by CAA as the A level event. From 2014 to 2017,Guangzhou Marathon was recognized as the CAA Gold Medal Race for four consecutive years. The year of 2018 has seen this event was upgraded as IAAF Gold Label Road Race after it was awarded as IAAF Bronze and Silver Label Road...

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Ethiopia’s Mulu Seboka will take on the in-form Celestine Chepchirchir of Kenya at the Guangzhou Marathon, a World Athletics Gold Label road race, on Sunday

The Prolific Ethiopian racer, who will compete in her fifth marathon of the year, owns the fastest personal best in the field at 2:21:56 set in Dubai four years ago. The 35-year-old competed in the southern Chinese city in 2016 and finished second in 2:32:26.

Seboka, a past Dubai Marathon, has a season’s best of 2:27:19 from her four marathons. She will obviously not be running with fresh legs in Guangzhou as her last race was just one week ago in Kunming, where she scored a 2:32:54 victory.

The rising Chepchirchir, 23, is the second fastest but the highest ranked (43) woman toeing the line. She knocked more than two minutes off her PB to finish third in Seoul in 2:24:48 nine months ago and went on to set a course record of 2:26:44 at the Cape Town Marathon in September.

Guangzhou will be her third race of the year and first time competing on Chinese soil.

Lilia Fisikovici of Moldova also improved lifetime best this April to 2:27:26 and has been pursuing her second international marathon title following her win in Krakow last April.

Other sub-2:30 runners in the field include two-time Daegu Marathon winner Pamela Rotich of Kenya who has a PB of 2:27:48, Ethiopia’s Hiwot Gebrekidan, who set a winning mark of 2:25:45 in See Genezareth two years ago, as well as Chinese duo Ding Changqin and He Yinli.

The men’s field is led by Kenya’s Eliud Kiptanui. The 30-year-old clocked a PB of 2:05:21 to finish second at the Berlin Marathon four years ago and has managed to run inside 2:10 every year since 2014. But the past winner in Ottawa and Prague has yet to break that barrier in 2019 as he only clocked a mediocre 2:14:15 to finish seventh in Xiamen in January and failed to finish in Taiyuan three months ago.

Kiptanui’s countryman Mike Kiptum took more than three minutes off his career best to finish third at Seoul Marathon in 2:06:22 in March, suggesting that the 27-year-old would be another serious candidate not only to win the title but also to rewrite the 2:10:01 course record set by Morocco’s Abdellah Tagharrafet in 2015.

The powerful Kenyan contingent also includes Felix Kirwa, whose PB of 2:06:13 was set in Eindhoven two years ago, and 31-year-old Josphat Letting, winner of the Tallinn Marathon in September.

Ethiopia’s Gebretsadik Abraha could be the biggest threat to the Kenyans. Although the 27-year-old achieved his 2:06:23 PB back in 2012, the consistent Abraha has maintained a high level of competitiveness, earning four podium finishes in his six races since 2017.

(12/06/2019) Views: 1,243 ⚡AMP
by World Athletics
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Guangzhou International Marathon

Guangzhou International Marathon

The Guangzhou Marathon was launched in 2012 and certified by CAA as the A level event. From 2014 to 2017,Guangzhou Marathon was recognized as the CAA Gold Medal Race for four consecutive years. The year of 2018 has seen this event was upgraded as IAAF Gold Label Road Race after it was awarded as IAAF Bronze and Silver Label Road...

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Ethiopia’s Bekelech Gudeta Borecha will make her Debut at Scotiabank Toronto Waterfront Marathon

A first-time marathon requires a great leap of faith as any distance runner can attest. And so it is that Ethiopian distance star Bekelech Gudeta, who will turn 22 nine days before the race, enters the unknown at the Scotiabank Toronto Waterfront Marathon tackling one of the strongest women’s fields assembled on Canadian soil. Though she has no experience at the classic marathon distance she has performed admirably these past two years in the half marathon, running under 1:08 on three occasions, most recently on September 15th. That time of 1:07:21 earned her 6th place in the Copenhagen Half Marathon, which, like Toronto, is an IAAF Gold Label race. A year ago, she recorded her personal best 1:07:03 on the same course.

"I am really happy to start the marathon," she reveals. " have run some half marathons and I think I can run a (good) marathon as a half marathon is a quicker pace than the marathon. I started preparation for the Toronto Waterfront Marathon from June. My target is to run a fast time in Toronto."

The women’s course record in Toronto is 2:22:29 and was set a year ago by Mimi Belete the Ethiopian who now runs for Bahrain. This doesn’t seem to faze Gudeta.

"My coach is Dawit Hiluf and he is telling me that I can run sub 2:22 in my first marathon," she says. "He is telling me the athletes with 1:07 in the half marathon have run 2:19 to 2:21 in the marathon and he is telling me it is possible to run fast in the first marathon. He is telling me that the Toronto marathon has a fast course. We expect to see me on the Toronto marathon podium with a fast time."

What gives her more confidence is that she has increased her training volume significantly this year but did not reduce it for her Copenhagen appearance. Training through Copenhagen and still coming away with a time just 18 seconds slower than her best must have been satisfying to her and her coach.

"Last year I was doing 100km per week now it’s 160 - 170km. So, I was expecting to run 1:05 (in Copenhagen) but this year there was too much wind. We ran against the wind. Especially when I dropped from the leading group it was difficult. But I am happy as I ran sub 68 for my third time."

Gudeta is a member of a training group put together by Volare Sports, a Netherlands based sports management company. It includes Hiwot Gebrekidan (2nd in Ottawa in both 2017 and 2018) Betelhem Moges (2nd in Ottawa 2019) and Abeba Gebremeskel (2nd place Seville marathon 2019). Like other runners she lives in the Ararat area of Addis, Ethiopia’s capital and shares a ride to training sites outside the city.

"Our training is in different places around Addis most of time we train in Sululta, Sendafa, Kaliti, Entoto, Sebeta and around Ararat inside Addis," she continues.

"We have a Volare team bus and we meet 3-4 times per week training program with a team. Monday, Wednesday, Friday and sometimes Sunday we train together with the team and Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday we have easy training separately. When we are not with the team I train around Ararat."

Bekelech has not always lived in Addis. She was born in Shona just 50 kilometers outside the capital. After being introduced to running at school and having some success one of her brothers encouraged her to move to Addis and become a serious runner. She credits him with her success.

In Toronto she will face her experienced compatriots Dibaba Kuma, Eshetu Biruktayit and Hiwot Gebrekidan as well as Kenya’s Magdalyne Masai and Ruth Chebitok.

While the Toronto Waterfront Marathon signifies a dramatic change in direction for Bekelech Gudeta she sees it as a step towards meeting her ultimate goals.

"My goal is be a world class athlete like (Kenya’s four-time New York Marathon champion) Mary Keitany and Tirunesh Dibaba (three-time Olympic champion from Ethiopia)," she declares. " have represented my country during the World Half Marathon Championship last year in Valencia and I was 8th place. I want to represent Ethiopia again in the 2020 Tokyo Olympics or in other Olympics. It is my dream as a runner."

(09/25/2019) Views: 1,318 ⚡AMP
by Paul Gains
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TCS Toronto Waterfront Marathon

TCS Toronto Waterfront Marathon

The Scotiabank Toronto Waterfront Marathon, Half-Marathon & 5k Run / Walk is organized by Canada Running Series Inc., organizers of the Canada Running Series, "A selection of Canada's best runs!" Canada Running Series annually organizes eight events in Montreal, Toronto and Vancouver that vary in distance from the 5k to the marathon. The Scotiabank Toronto Waterfront Marathon and Half-Marathon are...

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Ethiopian Worknesh Edesa will headline the women field at Lanzhou

The women’s course record of 2:31:22 set by Kenya’s Nguriatukei Rael Kiyara four years ago will  face serious threat.

Worknesh Edesa of Ethiopia improved her PB by nearly three minutes to 2:21:05 in Dubai this January to make her the fastest woman on paper. Since her marathon debut in 2015, the 26-year-old Edesa has never finished outside of the top three in each marathon she’s contested. Even her slowest clocking of 2:31:06 set in 2015 is better than Kiyara’s Lanzhou record.

Edesa’s compatriot Gutemi Shone, 27, is another title contender. The former Ottawa and Seoul marathon winner recorded her career best of 2:23:32 in Houston four years ago and scored a 2:24:28 victory in Sevilla in February.

Fatuma Sado, also from Ethiopia, is the only woman in the field that has competed in Lanzhou before, clocking 2:38:39 to finish fifth in her previous outing in the western Chinese city. The 27-year-old has titles from Hamburg, Los Angeles, Xiamen, Beijing, Warsaw and Osaka on her CV and registered her PB of 2:24:16 from her third place finish in Toronto in 2015.

The 35-year-old veteran Aberu Mekuria is also known for her consistency with victories in Koln, Hengshui, Ottawa and Valencia to her name. Two month ago she added the Chongqing Marathon title to her title collection with a PB of 2:24:30.

Fantu Jimma, 31, will also arrive in Lanzhou with high spirits after taking the victory at the Wuhan Marathon in April. Her winning mark of 2:28:25 is some two minutes shy of her PB of 2:26:14 set in Dubai four years ago.

The field also includes Ethiopian duo Hiwot Gebrekidan, a 2:25:45 performer, and Sifan Melaku, who just improved her PB to 2:26:46 in Sevilla in February, as the women’s race is very likely to see a sweep of podium by Ethiopian runners.

(05/31/2019) Views: 1,509 ⚡AMP
by IAAF
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Lanzhou International Marathon

Lanzhou International Marathon

Lanzhou International Marathon has been honorably awarded as China’s “Best Marathon” and “Marathon Gold Label Race” by Chinese Athletics Association, meanwhile it has upgraded into one of the National Scoring Races.Lanzhou International Marathon is carefully crafted on the course along the Yellow River line which is spotted with beautiful natural scenery and mountains and waters along the way, and it...

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Past Champions Jemal Yimer And Buze Diriba wants to Defend their Titles at Credit Union Cherry Blossom Ten Mile

Organizers of the 47th Credit Union Cherry Blossom Run announced today that 2018 champions Jemal Yimer and Buze Diriba will return to our nation's capital to defend their titles on Sunday, April 7. Past champions Stanley Kebenei(2017) and Stephen Sambu (2014 & 2015) will join Yimer on the starting line at 7:30 a.m., while Diriba will be joined by 2017 women's champion Hiwot Gebrekidan and the other elite women, who will have their own separate start at 7:18 a.m. One other past champion, Joan Nesbit Mabe, who was the last American woman to win Cherry Blossom in 1996, will be competing as an age grouper in the 55-59 women's category, starting alongside some 16,000 other runners.

This year's race will offer $96,500 in prize money and bonuses to top runners in the 10-mile:

$40,000 in prize money, plus a possible $3,500 in bonuses will be awarded in equal amounts to the top 10 international men and women;

time bonuses include $1000 for 1st sub-46:00 male; $750 for 2nd sub-46:00, $1000 for 1st sub-52:00 female; $750 for 2nd sub-52:00 female;

$25,000 in American Development Prize Money will be awarded in 2019 to the top 10 U.S. men and women, with double dipping allowed - meaning top American runners can collect top-10 overall prize money and top-10 American Development Prize Money;

As they have since 2017, race organizers are offering a $10,000 American record bonus for the first American man to break Greg Meyer's American record of 46:13, set here in 1983, and for the first American woman to break Janet Bawcom's single-sex American record of 52:12, set here in 2014;

Thanks to a collaborative effort between Credit Union Cherry Blossom Run organizers and the Road Runners Club of America (RRCA), $1,500, $1,000 and $500 will be awarded to the top-three men and women alumni of two innovative developmental programs, the RRCA Roads Scholars Grants, and RRCA's RunPro Camp.

Event Director Phil Stewart said: "We are pleased to host the Washington area's only internationally significant road race, featuring top runners from around the globe. We also believe in helping Americans onto the world stage through our American prize money and support for RRCA Roads Scholars and RunPro Camp alumni. These elite athletes provide inspiration to 16,000 others who chase after them in vain."

Defending champion and two-time runner-up (2016 & 2017) Buze Diriba comes in as the favorite in the women's race. As it has since 2006 - with the exception of the wind-plagued 2016 event, when the women's start was combined with the men's - the separate start for women mentioned in the first paragraph will allow for the women's times to be considered as women's-only records without any effect of being paced by males. The format also provides increased visibility for these talented female athletes.

(04/04/2019) Views: 1,633 ⚡AMP
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Cherry Blossom Ten Mile Run

Cherry Blossom Ten Mile Run

The Credit Union Cherry Blossom is known as "The Runner's Rite of Spring" in the Nation's Capital. The staging area for the event is on the Washington Monument Grounds, and the course passes in sight of all of the major Washington, DC Memorials. The event serves as a fundraiser for the Children's Miracle Network Hospitals, a consortium of 170 premier...

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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) Views: 1,776 ⚡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...

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Ethiopian Gelete Burka breaks course record at Ottawa Marathon

32-year-old Ethiopian’s Gelete Burka set a Canadian All Comers’ marathon record of 2:22:17 to win the Scotiabank Ottawa Marathon by almost four minutes on Sunday May 27.  Her superb victory on an overcast breezy day was earned despite suffering stomach cramps in the final 12 kilometers which at one point provided incentive to her compatriot, Hiwot Gebrekidan to attempt a break. But the highly experienced Burka brushed off the pain to earn her first marathon victory. Though she finished 6th in Dubai in 2:20:45 earlier this year, winning this IAAF Gold Label road race on a less than flat course is certainly a far greater achievement. Along with the $40,000 (Canada) first place prize Burka will receive an additional $10,000 (Canada) for the new course record. (05/28/2018) Views: 1,250 ⚡AMP
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For six miles there were 20 Runners in the Lead Pack at the Cherry Blossom Ten Miler

As the elite men’s racers took off in the Cherry Blossom Ten Mile Run, the large pack that typically separates into smaller groups of runners at different paces didn’t budge. Instead, for the first half of the 46th annual race, which has a course that features views of the city’s monuments amid the newly bloomed cherry blossom trees, the men stayed together. Until about the sixth mile, there were about 20 runners in the lead group, proving the deep talent pool this year’s competition offered. But in the last stretches of the course, a few pulled ahead and as Ethiopia’s Jemal Yimer, 21, reached the nine-mile marker, he made his move to the front of the lead group. Yimer, who had never been to the United States before entering this race and is excited to go sightseeing, used the burst to win the elite men’s division in 46 minutes and 17 seconds. Aweke Ayalew Yimer finished five seconds behind as runner-up in 46:22, while Philip Langat (46:25), James Kibet (46:36) and Chris Derrick (46:53) rounded out the top five. In the women’s race Buze Diriba, 24, representing Ethiopia, won in 53 minutes and 45 seconds. Diriba had been second in the previous two Cherry Blossom Ten Mile Runs and avenged last year’s runner-up finish by 15 seconds to Hiwot Gebrekidan. Gebrekidan, last year’s winner, crossed the line three seconds after Diriba at 53:48. Hiwott Yemer (53:51), Alemitu Hawi (53:53), Diane Nukuri (53:56) and Vicoty Chepngeno (53:59) completed the top six. (04/08/2018) Views: 1,679 ⚡AMP
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