Fine elite fields have been assembled for the Vienna City Marathon, which will be staged for the 40th time on 23rd April. Norway’s Sondre Moen and Visiline Jepkesho of Kenya head the start lists of the jubilee edition. The Vienna City Marathon is Austria’s biggest one-day sporting event and the only road race in the country that features a World Athletics Elite Label. Including races at shorter distances organisers have now registered more than 38,000 entries. Over 9,000 of them will run the classic distance.
The men’s field includes eleven athletes with personal bests of sub 2:10. While Sondre Moen features the fastest personal best with a time of 2.05:48 the Norwegian former European record holder will concentrate on running a solid sub 2:10 race to come back from a less successful period. Therefore Abdi Fufa and Bethwel Yegon, who have both been added to the field in recent days, as well as Samwel Mailu and Titus Kimutai are more likely regarded as favorites.
Ethiopia’s Fufa has a PB of 2:05:57 from 2021 and knows the Vienna City Marathon well. He placed tenth here a year ago with 2:10:32. Bethwel Yegon is the fastest Kenyan on the start list and is said to be in fine form. He ran 2:06:14 in 2021 when he surprised with a second place in Berlin. Samwel Mailu looks well placed for a personal best. The Kenyan ran 2:07:19 in Frankfurt for the runner-up position last October. It was an unexpected marathon debut by Mailu since he was originally entered as a pacemaker. Fellow-Kenyan Titus Kimutai ran his marathon debut last autumn as well. He clocked 2:08:31 and was seventh in Linz, Austria. Germany’s Sebastian Hendel is among those athletes looking to break 2:10 for the first time. Andreas Vojta of Austria might also target such a result.
Kenya’s Charles Ndiema and Ser-Od Bat-Ochir of Mongolia as well as Ethiopia’s women only 5k world record holder Senbere Teferi had to withdraw from the race recently. However the women’s elite field of the Vienna City Marathon looks strong. Ten athletes have personal bests of sub 2:30 and four of them have already run faster than 2:23:30.
The former Paris and Rotterdam Marathon champion Visiline Jepkesho is the fastest woman in the field with a PB of 2:21:37. It looks likely that a Kenyan women will win the Vienna City Marathon for a sixth time in a row since the next couple of athletes on the entry list are also from Kenya. Magdalyne Masai (PB: 2:22:16), Rebecca Tanui (2:23:09) and Agnes Keino (2:23:26) should be among the contenders in Vienna. Fellow-Kenyan Caroline Jepchirchir hopes to improve her PB of 2:26:11 and could be among the top finishers. Poland’s Angelika Mach and Branna MacDougall of Canada are the fastest non-African runners on the list with PBs of 2:27:48 and 2:28:36 respectively. Julia Mayer of Austria is expected to perform well and might achieve a time of around 2:30:00.
Elite runners with personal bests
For more information please visit: www.vienna-marathon.com