×

• Rotich leaves it till final kilometre before taking winning lead, Debutant Arusei wins women's title in Athens

Article source:

 

In a dramatic closing sequence Luka Rotich overhauled his fellow Kenyan and long-time race leader Benson Kipruto to take a winning advantage in the 34th edition of the Athens Marathon. The Authentic with only one kilometre left to run. In warm and often windy conditions the 28-year-old won in 2:12:49 ahead of Kipruto's 2:13:24. Completing the more familiar tale of a Kenyan clean sweep, Andrew Kimtai finished third in 2:13:26. The elite women's field also produced a Kenyan winner and a debutant at that: Nancy Arusei overcame the tough course for an impressive run in 2:38:13 with the 30-year-old finishing ahead of Algeria's Kenza Dahmani in 2:38:28 and Ourania Rebouli of Greece taking a distant third place in 2:49:24.

The Athens Marathon, held over the unique original course from the small coastal town of Marathon and finishing in the Panathinaic Stadium in Athens, had a record entry of 17,500 runners. Taking into account the 5 and 10km races held in conjunction, the Greek Athletics Federation (SEGAS) noted another record with around 50,000 athletes participating. Before the eventual winner ran into the marble arena of the Panathinaic Stadium, a ceremony celebrated the 120th anniversary since the first Olympic Marathon race. It was on the same course as the 2016 event was held today, finishing in the very same stadium in 1896.

The Athens Marathon. The Authentic is part of the history of dramatic Athens Marathon races, including the Olympic events of 1896 and 2004. When the six-strong leading men's group reached the highest point in the course at 31 kilometres - around 250 metres above sea level - it had been clear for some time that the course record of 2:10:37 in such windy conditions was going to remain out of reach.

Instead of an attack on the course record the race became a dramatic contest experienced by the many spectators lining the road for the latter stages. Shortly after the course dropped steeply down towards Athens just after 31km Benson Kipruto went clear of his rivals. At the same time Hillary Yego of Kenya, the 2013 Athens champion, dropped off the pace. His compatriot Augustine Ronoh, who had a best of 2:07:23 and was the fastest in the field, had lost contact before.

The 25-year-old Kipruto was running his debut marathon and looked as if he was about to celebrate with a victory. Five kilometres before the finish he led by 40 seconds ahead of a trio comprising Luka Rotich, Andrew Kimtai and Bernard Kitur. Only Rotich had enough left in the tank to summon up one last effort and close the gap on Kipruto.

Rotich caught the slowing Kipruto just over a kilometre before the finish. "I felt good until 41 kilometres but then it became really hard. But I am happy with my debut," said Kipruto. "It was hard to stay with the pace. But at the end I still had enough left to run fast," reflected Luka Rotich, whose best time remains 2:08:12. "I think on a flat course I would have definitely run under 2:10 today and perhaps 2:06 or 2:07."

The women's race quickly developed into a duel between Nancy Arusei and her Kenyan compatriot Penina Wanjiru with the latter considered one of the pre-race favourites. The Kenyans Gladys Kwambai and Purity Kimetto were dropped soon after 10km, right at the start of the long climb. It was Nancy Arusei who led with Penina Wanjiru behind her. Wanjiru was then dropped as well.

At the end the debutant was the one to falter as Kenza Dahmani reduced the deficit yet the Algerian was not able to overtake the Kenyan. "I never thought before the race that I could win it. I only believed it after 40 kilometres," said Nancy Arusei.

Top Results, Men:

1. Luka Rotich KEN 2:12:49
2. Benson Kipruto KEN 2:13:24
3. Andrew Kimtai KEN 2:13:26
4. Benard Kitur KEN 2:13:32
5. Silas Limo KEN 2:16:34
6. Alfred Cherop KEN 2:17:37
7. Hillary Yego KEN 2:18:37

Top Results Women:

1. Nancy Arusei KEN 2:38:13
2. Kenza Dahmani ALG 2:38:28
3. Ourania Rebouli GRE 2:49:24

Further information can be found at: www.athensauthenticmarathon.gr

Photo credit: SEGAS-AMA



Latest Videos
» New Balance Indoor Grand Prix - Live Stream
26 January 2019 at 20:00 (UTC)
» ISTAF Indoor 2019 (Berlin, GER) - Live Stream
01 February 2019 at 17:00 (UTC)
» Combined Events Tallinn 2019 - Live Stream
02 February 2019 at 09:00 (UTC)
» Indoor Meeting - Karlsruhe - Live Stream
02 February 2019 at 18:00 (UTC)
» RIG Games 2019 - Live Stream
03 February 2019 at 10:00 (UTC)
Flash News
Russian doping: Wada will gain access to Moscow laboratory data

The World Anti-Doping Agency (Wada) says it is "another step closer" to gaining full access to the former Moscow anti-doping laboratory. A team of five experts will travel to Russia on Monday to retrieve the data.

December 16, 2018 Read More on: BBC Sports

Team Europe announced for Simplyhealth Great Stirling XCountry

Seven individual medallists from the recent SPAR European Cross Country Championships in Tilburg have been named on Team Europe for the Simplyhealth Great Stirling XCountry, a European Athletics Cross Country Permit Meeting, on 12 January.

December 16, 2018 Read More on: European Athletics

Course Records Smashed In Shenzen, Ethiopian Double In Kolkata

Kenya’s Edwin Kipngetich Koech produced the Shenzhen Marathon’s first ever sub-2:10 performance, while Ethiopia’s Mulu Seboka improved the women’s course record by more than six minutes at the IAAF Silver Label road race on Sunday (16).

December 16, 2018 Read More on: IAAF

Past Headlines Latest Results Upcoming Events
16 Dec Cross Internacional de Venta de Baños
16 Dec Shenzhen Marathon 2018 (CHI)
16 Dec Tata Steel Kolkata 25K (2018)
16 Dec Mersin Marathon 2018 (TUR)
16 Dec Bangsaen21 Half Marathon
13 Dec Zatopek: 10 (2018)
09 Dec Zurich Maratón de Malaga 2018
09 Dec European Cross Country Championships,
09 Dec Standard Chartered Singapore Marathon
08 Dec Foot Locker National Championships 2018
07 Dec Abu Dhabi Marathon 2018
02 Dec California International Marathon 2018
02 Dec Valencia Marathon 2018
30 Dec Corrida Internationale de Houilles (FRA)
06 Jan 62° Campaccio-International Cross
12 Jan Great Stirling Cross Cross Country 2019
13 Jan Cross Internacional Juan Muguerza,
19 Jan Northern Ireland International Cross
20 Jan Cross Internacional de Italica, Sevilla
26 Jan New Balance Indoor Grand Prix
27 Jan 87th Cinque Mulini, San Vittore Olona
27 Jan Meeting de Paris Indoor
01 Feb ISTAF Indoor 2019 (Berlin, GER)
01 Feb Meeting de l'Eure
02 Feb Indoor Meeting - Karlsruhe
02 Feb Combined Events Tallinn 2019
03 Dec Lavillenie, Spanovic, Lückenkemper for ...
03 Dec RunCzech celebrating the end of its ...
02 Dec Results: Fukuoka International Marathon ...
02 Dec Results: Valencia Marathon 2018 ...
02 Dec Dido and Gebreselassie Smash Records in ...
30 Nov Road and Cross Country Action This Weekend ...
25 Nov Results: Asics Firenze Marathon 2018 ...
25 Nov Salpeter Smashes Firenze Marathon Course ...
18 Nov Ethiopians Tura and Melese Prevail in ...
17 Nov Results: NCAA D1 Cross Country ...
16 Nov Top road and cross country action this ...
13 Nov Best VPN to Watch Live Sports Free ...
12 Nov Bright Future beckons for resurgent Athens ...
Watch Athletics
©2018 WATCHATHLETICS.COM. All rights reserved.