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The Houston Marathon Committee (HMC) has selected Susan Christian, Director of the Mayor’s Office of Special Events (MOSE) as its 2020 Houston Marathon Hall of Fame Inductee.
Through her dynamic leadership of more than 34 years, Christian developed the MOSE office and has driven the city’s commitment to, and celebration of quality civic events – including the Houston Marathon Weekend of Events – showcasing the rich cultural diversity of Houston.
The Houston Marathon Hall of Fame recognises outstanding people who have contributed to the success and growth of the Houston Marathon over the last 48 years, from industry and community leaders to humanitarians, athletes and volunteers.
“Each year, I’m reminded of the sheer joy that I see on the runners’ faces as they pass by the start line, the exuberance of their step and determination to get to the finish line,” said Christian. “And at the finish line, I see on the runner’s faces both agony and ecstasy of completing a goal. It’s truly remarkable.”
Throughout most of her tenure at the City of Houston, Christian has worked alongside Houston Marathon staff and volunteers to design various course routes and facilitates permitting and other support services for the event annually.
“Susan’s role in our event is one that isn’t always outwardly visible to our participants but is essential to our operations,” said Houston Marathon Committee Executive Director, Wade Morehead. “The event truly would not be possible without her and her team’s collaborative efforts throughout the year.”
Christian credits the success of her office to like-minded individuals and organizations who share the belief that partnerships are fundamental to growth and sustainability.
The International WACHAUmarathon (AUT) will take place on Sun 27 September 2020, not Sat 26 September 2020 as previously published.
The International Asunción Half Marathon (PAR) will take place on Sun 17 May 2020, not Sun 24 May 2020 as previously published.
The Cajasiete Gran Canaria Marathon (ESP) will take place on Sun 15 November 2020, not Sun 26 January 2020 as previously published.
The subject of the 13th AIMS Marathon Symposium held in Athens, Greece on 9 November was “Technology and mass running events”.
Sheng Lan Yang, the vice-director of marketing at the Chinese Athletics Association, in her talk on ‘Technology applications in Chinese marathon races’, gave a highly impressive presentation of the incredible scale of development of running in China, and how technology innovation has been central to developing running opportunities for the people of China.
Fiona Green, author of Winning with Data-CRM and Analytics for the Business of Sports spoke on ‘Using CRM and Data to Increase Participation, Revenue and Engagement’, giving a fascinating insight of the modern world and how attention span has changed over the years, to the point that the average adult’s current-day attention span is eight seconds (‘a goldfish is nine seconds!’ added Ms Green), for the younger generation six seconds and young children under five years old four seconds.
Ms Green quoted Microsoft founder Bill Gates saying in 1999: ‘How you gather, manage and use information will determine whether you win or lose.’ She said: ‘We live in a world that is competing for time, money and attention and if you want to gain any of those, you have eight seconds or less to gain them before that person’s attention is off somewhere else.’
Ms Green talked about CRM (Customer Relationship Management) in the modern world and the key of ‘getting the right message to the right person at the right time’ and how technology and its ability to collect and analyse data enables you to do that.
Michael Nishi, General Manager of the Bank of America Chicago Marathon spoke on ‘How Technology may support the Safety and Security program of your race’. He gave a very impressive presentation on technology’s central role in enabling the quality of decision making when managing a group of 45,000 people and all the variables that can involve.
The Chicago Marathon has a sophisticated command centre where all the services of police, traffic, fire, medical and expert decision makers are gathered where their decision making is informed by data and technology.
One example given was how the weather temperature is monitored from long before and during the race. The race uses various channels including digital and social media to inform, educate and advise runners and most importantly aim to keep them safe.
In 2017 the Chicago Marathon had to cancel its event due to extreme heat. Where of course such actions bring disappointment, they are essential in the interests of the health of participants and the complex process has to be managed and access to data, analysis and communication is central to that process. The use of technology is a key component in effective decision making that in turn can saves lives.
Vaggelis Vlachos, Software Developer-Electronics Engineer and Eleni Vlachou Market Researcher & Business Consultant-Greece spoke on ‘Artificial Intelligence in Marathon Races’. Ms Vlachou gave an insightful talk about a system that is being developed to identify rogue runners who use false numbers to take part in the race without officially entering and how technology van be used to identify them and help avoid cheating and potential disruption to the event.
Other speakers included the three Chairpeople of AIMS’ three new commissions started this year:
Martha Morales, Chairperson of the AIMS Women’s Commission talked about the planned initiatives that AIMS is developing around the world such as ‘empowerment for girls’ through running.
Michael Nishi Chairperson of AIMS Safety & Security Commission spoke about the considerable work being developed by AIMS to create models of good practice and test cases to help event organisers improve safety for runners, volunteers and staff and spectators.
George Kazantzopoulos Chairperson of AIMS Sustainability Commission talked about the models of good practice being developed by AIMS looking at examples of excellence in ensuring events are organised in a way that respects the environment. Looking for example at areas of air quality, climate change and waste management.
Paco Borao President of AIMS commented: ‘One of AIMS’ goals is to exchange knowledge and expertise and the AIMS Symposium is an excellent platform for enabling that to happen. Always with the goal of creating a better experience for the true actors of our show: the runners.’
An astonishing 340 million runners in just the last four years have taken part in ‘online marathon’ events in China.
Ms Sheng Lan Yang of the CAA (Chinese Athletics Association) cited this number on 9 November at the 13th Marathon Symposium in Athens, Greece, organised by AIMS.
The vice-director of marketing at the CAA, in her talk on ‘Technology applications in Chinese marathon races’, said that in 1997, China had fewer than 10 marathons. By 2011 there were 39 events but just seven years later in 2018 there were 1,581 races with 5.83 million runners taking part.
Ms Yang went on to explain about the creation of a special ‘online marathon’ initiative set up four years ago in conjunction with CAA and AIMS member the Xiamen Marathon, where runners signed up to running the race in their own local location through an app called “Joyrun”.
Runners register online and then run the marathon in their own location wherever they may be. The app includes virtual crowd cheers – “come on” and “you are the best”. Once the runner has completed their route, followed by GPS, they then receive a physical medal and certificate sent to them to mark their achievement.
Since that first ‘event’ 340 million people have taken part in the Joyrun app online marathons. In 2018 alone 32.5 million people participated in online marathons. Individual ‘events’ have drawn entries of an astonishing 300,000 runners.
One other innovation mentioned by Ms Yang was a heart rate safety monitoring system where runners heart rate is fed into an algorithm which can monitor the runner’s health during the race and warn if it is getting to a dangerous level and intervene in extreme cases. This is an excellent method of monitoring the runner’s health and enables the data to be analysed in large numbers by health professionals using the knowledge obtained to inform medical support and policies. As an example, Ms Yang revealed that the maximum heart rate level during marathons in China arises between the 35-40 kilometre stage in the 42.2 km event.
The Ethiopian distance runner Lelisa Desisa and Kenya’s Ruth Chepngetich were tonight recognised as the male and female recipients of the ‘Best Marathon Runner’ Award for 2019 by the Association of International Marathons and Distance Races (AIMS).
Their achievements were given global recognition in the birthplace of the Marathon in Athens, Greece tonight (Friday 8 November 2019) at the seventh annual AIMS Best Marathon Runner (BMR) Gala.
Lelisa and Ruth were chosen by the AIMS Athletes’ Nomination Committee as the outstanding candidates for the Male/Female Best Marathon Runner Awards 2019 based upon their performances.
This is the first time either athlete has been recognised with an AIMS Award.
Lelisa Desisa (29) won the TCS New York City Marathon in November 2018 before becoming the World Champion in the Marathon, winning at the IAAF World Athletics Championships in Doha, Qatar on 6 October 2019, recording a time of 2:10:40.
Ruth Chepngetich (25) is a Marathon World Champion, winning at the 2019 IAAF World Athletics Championships in Doha, Qatar in a time of 2:32:43. In the past year she also added wins at the Istanbul Marathon, Standard Chartered Dubai Marathon (in 2:17:08 – the second fastest time of the year), Vodafone Istanbul Half Marathon, Seiryu Half Marathon & the Media Maraton de Bogota.
Lelisa Desisa comments: “Thank you to AIMS, their Members and Partners for presenting me with this award. This is a proud moment in my career.”
Ruth Chepngetich comments: “I am very happy to receive this award in Athens where the sport of marathon running was born. It is a great honour to be recognised in this way.”
AIMS President Paco Borao: “I am very proud to welcome these two excellent athletes to Athens and present them with the Best Marathon Runner Award on behalf of the 473 members of AIMS from 124 countries around the world.”
The Association of International Marathons and Distance Races (AIMS), the member organisation representing more than 460 of the world’s leading distance races is pleased to announce the Harmony Geneva Marathon for Unicef from Switzerland will receive the 2019 AIMS Social Award.
The award, which recognises races working towards achieving the 17 Sustainable Development Goals of the United Nations, will be presented during the seventh annual AIMS ‘Best Marathon Runner’ (BMR) Awards Gala to be held in the birthplace of the Marathon in Athens, Greece on 8 November 2019.
The two other shortlisted races were the Dhiraagu Maldives Road Race (Maldives) – 2nd & the Kingston City Marathon, Half Marathon, 10K and 5K (Jamaica) – 3rd.
Since 2010 the Harmony Geneva Marathon has been in partnership with Unicef, supporting the program ‘WASH: Water, Sanitation, Hygiene’ and their Sustainable Development Goal of ensuring access to water sanitation for all. To date the race has raised more than 440,000 Swiss francs (400,000 EUR) which has financed the installation of 1,000 water pumps in different countries. From 2020, the Harmony Geneva Marathon for UNICEF will support UNICEF Malawi to provide solar water pumps – a reliable, sustainable, user friendly and green technology solution for rural communities.
In addition, the race manages a clothes collection point in the Marathon Village in association with the organisation Bilifou (www.bilifou.ch) to benefit young people in Burkino Faso. This partnership has seen over 1,000kgs of clothes collected. Other activities with disabled people and refugees are managed by the organisation in order to include everyone in the event.
Benjamin Chandelier, Harmony Geneva Marathon for Unicef Director comments: “The Harmony Geneva Marathon for Unicef has a long and proud history of working together with Unicef to benefit communities in different countries. We have ambitious goals the future and look forward to sharing our story with AIMS. We would like to thank AIMS, their partners and sponsors for presenting us with this award. This event couldn’t take place without our 1,000 volunteers, or the unwavering support of the Canton and City of Geneva as well as Chêne-Bourg who hosted the start of our races and all the villages we cross through on the beautiful course. Finally, I would also like to thank all our partners for their ongoing support and commitment”.
Paco Borao, AIMS President comments: “The Harmony Geneva Marathon for Unicef is a great example of a race helping communities in need on another continent. Their successes are clear and their plans are exciting. Everyone at AIMS wishes them every success in the future."
The event will be staged in Athens, Greece on Friday 8 November 2019 and is co-organised with the Hellenic Athletics Federation (SEGAS), ‘Athens Marathon. The Authentic.’ and the Region of Attica, held under the kind sponsorship of the ‘Greek National Tourism Organisation’ and ‘Athens International Airport’.
Candidates for the AIMS Social Award should showcase their social commitment as a demonstration of their good will and practice when organising a Marathon event.
Previous Recipients of the AIMS Social Award
2013 – Great Ethiopian Run (Ethiopia)
2014 – Tokyo Marathon (Japan)
2015 – Maratón Internacional Lala (Mexico)
2016 – Munich Marathon (Germany)
2017 – Maratón de las Flores Medellín (Colombia)
2018 – Belgrade Marathon (Serbia)
Dear AIMS members, dear colleagues and friends of Running,
We invite you to the 23rd World Congress of AIMS to be held in Batumi, Georgia from 23 to 26 April 2020.
We look forward to seeing you in Batumi!
Head of Organizing Team of the 23rd AIMS World Congress
Brimin Misoi, the Kenyan who made headlines with an emphatic victory last year, will take pride of place on the start line for the 37th edition of the “Athens Marathon. The Authentic” on Sunday, November 10.
In 2018 Misoi ran the third fastest time ever of 2:10:56 on the renowned, tough course from the coastal town of Marathon to the heart of Athens. He crossed the finish line in the Panathenaic Stadium, venue for the 1896 Olympic Games, almost two minutes clear of his nearest rival.
Retaining the title will prove no easy task despite the Kenyan improving his personal best to 2:09:31 in the Vienna City Marathon in April where he was sixth. His rivals will include compatriot Daniel Muteti, whose best of 2:09:25 in finishing second in the Cape Town Marathon was achieved in mid-September.
Adding historic lustre will be the 2004 Olympic champion Stefano Baldini. On his return to the original marathon course the Italian will be running as a “tourist” rather than elite competitor but his Olympic winning time of 2:10:55 was just one second faster than Brimin Misoi’s last year, further proof of the Kenyan’s quality.
The “Athens Marathon. The Authentic” has already broken records in the race build-up with participation limits in the marathon and parallel events now fully booked. A record total of more than 20,000 will run the marathon, a further 12,000 take part in the 10km road race and another 20,000 run the 5km Road Race ZERO WASTE FUTURE (by Coca-Cola), while total numbers of runners in all events has exceeded 60,000, another record. This festival of running is organized as in previous years by the Hellenic Athletics Federation (SEGAS). For the first time the 10km road race will be held on Saturday evening in central Athens, rather than all the running events taking place on Sunday, another indication of the tremendous growth of interest in the past few years, including a steep rise in the international entry among mass runners. This year 12,000 runners from more than 120 countries will be represented among the 60,000 involved in total, making the Athens Marathon one of the most international races in the world.
One more record of the event is the attendance of the races at the 13th AIMS Marathon Symposium and the 7th Best Marathon Runners Awards Gala: Race directors and representatives of 80 international marathons from 45 countries will be present.
As for the race for top honours, Brimin Misoi has not raced since the Vienna City Marathon in April where he brought his personal best down to 2:09:31. A rival and fellow Kenyan who knows what it means to run at that level is Daniel Muteti, making his debut on the Athens course. As recently as September 15 he ran his best of 2:09:25 to finish second in Cape Town. He has had a busy year in marathon terms in general, having begun with 2:10:55 for fourth in Mumbai on January 20. Athens and its challenging, rolling hills then descent for the last 10km may test his powers of recovery. Rhonzas Kilimo of Kenya dropped out of his debut marathon in Hamburg in late April but the former steeplechaser finished second in the Berlin Half Marathon with 61:01, an indication of marathon promise, at least. Also known as Rhonzaz Lokitam he clocked a half marathon PB of 60:49 a year ago in Valencia. These runners and others have the potential to put Felix Kandie’s 2014 course record of 2:10:37under pressure.
One outcome already certain is that every marathon finisher in the Panathenaic Stadium will receive their own piece of history in the form of the inaugural medal depicting the history of the race. To be awarded over the next eight years, this debut finisher’s medal, aptly enough, portrays the Battle of Marathon where the legend of the lone Athenian soldier-messenger began.
The Association of International Marathons and Distance Races (AIMS), the member organisation representing more than 460 of the world’s leading distance races is pleased to announce the Xiamen Marathon from the Chinese city of Xiamen as the recipient of the 2019 AIMS Green Award, becoming the first Chinese running event to win the Award.
The Award is given in recognition of excellence in environmental practice and will be presented during the prestigious AIMS ‘Best Marathon Runner’ (BMR) Awards Gala to be held in the birthplace of the Marathon in Athens, Greece on Friday 8 November 2019.
Candidates for the AIMS Green Award are judged, among other criteria, on how the race promotes environmentally friendly practices, how volunteers contribute to the success of the event and how the race educates younger generations about the benefits of sport and environmental protection.
The two other races shortlisted by the judges were the Marine Corps Marathon (USA) – 2nd, and the Schneider Electric Marathon de Paris (France) – 3rd.
The Xiamen Marathon was founded in 2003 and has been rated as an ‘IAAF Gold Label Event’ for 12 straight years. The race organisers are demonstrating significant effort regarding climate change, waste reduction and environmental awareness raising. The start and finish of the race is Xiamen International Convention and Exhibition Center accessible by many public transport options which are promoted by the race. Free shuttle buses are provided to runners by the race while shared bicycle parking is provided. In 2019, over 40 thousand people took advantage of public transport options.
The race aimed to create the first ‘zero pollution’ marathon event in China by organising volunteers to collect litter from the course of the marathon and categorise it for recycling. In 2019 the race recycled 16.15 tons of plastic bottles and paper cups and cleaned up six tons of plastic from the course.
Since 2015, the Xiamen Marathon have donated over 130 thousand saplings to be planted, creating the “Xiamen Forest of Love” in cooperation with the project ‘Million Forest’ run by China Green Foundation.
Ruan Dunliang, Vice President of the Xiamen Marathon comments: “We are very proud to be recognised with this very prestigious award by AIMS. We take our environmental responsibilities very seriously. From the year 2020, we will advocate Car-free Day on the race day. Meanwhile, we will continue to build ‘Xiamen Marathon Forest of Love’ and promote the plan of UNEP for cleaning the ocean to reduce environmental pollution. We look forward to visiting the home of the Marathon in Athens to receive the award.”
Paco Borao, President of AIMS: “I am looking forward to welcoming the Xiamen Marathon to Athens for the Best Marathon Runner Gala on behalf of AIMS Members, Partners and Sponsors. All our Members can look to their example for inspiration in how to host a sustainable event. We would like to thank and congratulate all the member races that submitted their candidateship for the AIMS Green Award.”
AIMS has been honouring races with the AIMS Green Award that have shown exceptional work in this area since 2013. However, AIMS intention is not only to honour ‘environmental initiatives’ of its members, but also to help them improve their races, in terms of good environmental practices during their marathon events. To this end, AIMS in collaboration with the Institute Team for the World Environmental Alliance 2004+, a scientific non-governmental not-for-profit organization headed by Mr. George Kazantzopoulos, Chairman of the AIMS Sustainability Commission and former Member of the IOC Sport & Environment Commission, has established a set of environmental guidelines, in line with the IOC Olympic Movement’s Agenda 21 and the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals, over and above the creation of the AIMS Green Award.
Previous Recipients of the AIMS Green Award
2013 – SuisseGas Milano Marathon (Italy)
2014 – BMW Frankfurt Marathon (Germany)
2015 – Chevron Houston Marathon (USA)
2016 – GöteborgsVarvet Half Marathon (Sweden)
2017 – Sanlam Cape Town Marathon (South Africa)
2018 – SwissCityMarathon-Lucerne (Switzerland)
The BLOM BANK Beirut Marathon (LIB) has been postponed due to ongoing civil unrest in Lebanon.
After extensive discussions the organisers decided to cancel the race which had been planned to take place on November 11.
“The Beirut Marathon remains committed to its mission of moving and uniting Lebanon through running by placing our beloved country on the international map of sports and showing the true colours of Lebanon,” the organisers said in a statement.
“Keeping true to our mission, values and relations with our partners, runners, stakeholders, volunteers, international participants and friends, we have hereby decided to postpone the 17th edition of BLOM BANK Beirut Marathon to a later, more appropriate date.”
Alfons Juck of EME News reports: The US House of Representatives has passed an act which would criminalise doping conspiracies.
The Rodchenkov Anti-Doping Act, which would have to be passed by the House of Congress and then President Donald Trump, would apply to all major international sporting competition involving American sportspeople as well as in other situations, insidethegames.biz reports.
The maximum penalties would be $1million or 10 years in prison.
The addition of Lonah Salpeter completes the elite field for the Mainova Frankfurt Marathon which takes place next Sunday. The Kenyan-born runner who competes for Israel has a personal best of 2:19:46 which makes her the fastest woman ever to be on the start list of the Mainova Frankfurt Marathon.
Given the extraordinary strength in depth of the women’s race, the course record could well fall after just one year in existence – and the Mainova Frankfurt Marathon might record the first sub-2:20 women’s time in its history. Four women who have run under 2:22 will be on the start line: alongside Salpeter (2:19:46) will be the title holder Meskerem Assefa of Ethiopia, who set the course record of 2:20:36 last year, the Kenyan Valary Aiyabei with a best of 2:20:53 and the Ethiopian Bedatu Hirpa (2:21:32). The latter finished third in Frankfurt last year. Another expected to produce a strong performance is the Ethiopian Megertu Kebede whose best is 2:22:52.
The men’s race on Sunday features a rare, perhaps unique contest over the marathon distance: junior against veteran or masters world record holder – Tsegaye Mekonnen against Mark Kiptoo. Mekonnen of Ethiopia has a best of 2:04:32 which means he is the fastest man in the field, while the Kenyan Kiptoo’s personal best is 2:06:00.
Many athletes competing in Frankfurt will have their eyes on the qualifying times for the Olympic Games in Tokyo next year. The target for the men is 2:11:30 and 2:29:30 for the women.
Eight men with best times under 2:08 will be on the start line which suggests yet another high quality and exciting race for top honours in Frankfurt with finishing times to match. Tsegaye Mekonnen is looking to re-establish himself with a fast time after injury problems on a Mainova Frankfurt Marathon course renowned for speedy performances. The world masters record holder Mark Kiptoo, who set an age group record here last year, should also have a say in the outcome this time. If he can match his younger rivals, his own masters world record will be under pressure.
Two Europeans seeking both big improvements on their personal bests and the Olympic qualifying times will be Britain’s Stephanie Twell (2:30:14) and the local runner Katharina Steinruck (2:28:34).
The Volksbank-Münster-Marathon (GER) will take place on Sun 20 September 2020, not Sun 13 September 2020 as previously published.
The Taishin Women Run Taipei (TPE) will take place on Sun 29 March 2020, not Sun 12 April 2020 as previously published.
Brigid Kosgei broke Paula Radcliffe’s 16-year-old world record for the women’s marathon in the Bank of America Chicago Marathon on 13 October, winning in a time of 2:14:04.
She sliced 81 seconds off Radcliffe’s time of 2:15:25, set in London in 2003. Yet in the previous 16 years no woman had come anywhere near it – the closest had been Mary Keitany in the 2017 London Marathon with 2:17:01.
Kosgei won Chicago last year in 2:18:35 and improved to 2:18:20 in London earlier this year. She had become the fastest ever woman at the half marathon distance only the previous month with a time of 1:04:28 – but this was not set on a record-eligible course.
She set off fast, reaching 5km in 15:28 with only Ethiopia’s Abebel Yeshaneh (15:36) even trying to keep pace. She then settled into a rhythm of 16 minutes per 5km split (31:28, 47:26) to pass halfway, accompanied by two male pacemakers, in 1:06:59. From 30–35km she sped up with a 15:45 split and followed through to 40km with 15:56. She did not falter in the finishing stages as she stormed on towards the finish line by herself.
“I ran here last year so I knew it was a good course,” said Kosgei. “There was a little bit of wind but it was okay. People were cheering all along the course, which gave me more energy.”
Eliud Kipchoge proved that “No Human Is Limited” by becoming the first ever sub-two-hour marathon runner in Vienna on 12 October. He ran the marathon distance in 1:59:40.2.
The 34-year-old Kenyan’s historic achievement began at 08:15 on the Reichsbrücke bridge with the temperature at around 9ºC and the wind between 0.5–1.5 m/s. The circuit was configured as a 1.5km start section and then 4.2 laps on the Hauptallee, a historic tree-lined avenue in the Prater park, selected as the venue for the INEOS 1:59 Challenge because of its long, flat straight sections and its protection from the wind.
Kipchoge ran a consistent pace set by the electric timing car and the pacemakers of 2:50 per km throughout the race. Every split was between 2:48–2:52. A group of 41 elite runners from all over the World assisted as pacemakers, with teams of seven changing over approximately every 5km. “It is a great feeling to make history in sport. I am the happiest man in the world to be the first human to run under two hours. I expect more people all over the world to run under two hours after today. I thank [the pacemakers] and appreciate them for accepting to do the job. I want to make the sport [of distance running] an interesting sport whereby all human beings can run and together we can make this world a beautiful world,” he said.
Kipchoge’s time will not be ratified as an official IAAF World record but it has shown what a human being is able to achieve when everything, down to every last detail, is planned and well prepared.
Leonard Langat helped the Cardiff Half Marathon celebrate its recent inclusion in the new European ‘SuperHalfs Series’ by taking 73 seconds off the course record in the Welsh capital.
Langat came up with a brilliant sprint finish to pip fellow Kenyan, and 2016 champion, Shadrack Kimining by a mere two seconds. Langat won the race in 59:30, a mere 12 seconds outside his previous best, while long-time race leader Kimming at least had a 10 second PB to reward his efforts in second place in 59:32.
Those two times would have earned them the silver and bronze medals at the 2016 World Championships staged over virtually the same course in Cardiff, when current world record holder Geoffrey Kamworor won the title in 59:10 with Mo Farah back in third place in 59:59.
“I was feeling comfortable behind Shadrack and I pushed on in the final 500 metres. I kept the pace up right to the finish because I was feeling so strong,” said Langat.
“I always feel strong when I am running happy and that is down to the fantastic training group I have in Kenya. This is a wonderful course and I am sure that someone could run faster than 58 minutes on it in the future.”
Kamworor cut the world record down to 58:01 in winning the Copenhagen Half-Marathon, another one of the ‘Super Halfs Series’ events, last month.
Kimining tried to push up the steep incline coming off Roath Park Lake up to Cathays Cemetery, where Kamworor broke the field in 2016, but Langat refused to be shrugged off. He stayed on the shoulder of his rival before making his move coming down the finishing straight.
“I am happy to have run a PB and I think this is one of the fastest courses on which I have ever run. It is a bit like the event in Ras Al Khaimah,” said Kimining.
There was another dramatic finish in the women’s race as Kenya’s Lucy Cheruiyot and Ethiopia’s Azmera Abreha ran side-by-side down the finishing straight, with another Kenyan, Paskalia Kipkoech, not far behind.
In the end, the extra strength of Cheruiyot carried her to victory, although both she and Abreha were given the same times, 68:20. Kipkoech was a further five seconds behind in 68:25.
The women’s marathon of the IAAF World Championships was always going to be a steamy affair. Although starting at midnight and finishing in the very early hours of Saturday morning on 28 September all medallists commented on the conditions.
Winner Ruth Chepngetich (KEN) said: “It was a tough race. I knew what to expect… I trained for this weather by running in the afternoon when the sun is up. It was not easy to run in these conditions but that gave me strength and power.”
The defending champion, Rose Chelimo (KEN), commented: “It was very hot today… I was not expecting to be silver medallist in those conditions. This marathon here was much hotter than the one I finished in Jakarta. I managed to stay there almost until the end. I did not change anything compared to other marathons regarding water supplies or so from the beginning to the end.”
Bronze medallist Helalia Johannes (NAM) said: “I have never run at such a time and in such weather. And I also have never trained in similar conditions. Especially the humidity was tough. This is the first [women’s marathon] medal for my country Namibia, this means a lot to me.”
Caution was the watchword from the start with the first 5km split taking 18:21 (Chepngetich’s winning pace, averaged out, would be 18:06 for every 5km). Nineteen others passed the mark within three seconds and continued to 10km at the same pace although the group reduced to seven. Visiline Jepkesho then pushed the pace up and five contenders reached 15km in 54:01 (17:43 5km split). The pace then dropped back (18:33, 18:27) but the effect of the conditions made itself felt upon Jepkesho, who dropped back, eventually to finish 15th. The remaining four stuck together as Rose Chelimo and Ruth Chepngetich made the running (18:12, 18:10) to 35km with Helalia Johannes and 2011 and 2013 champion Edna Kiplagat following. Chepngetich then forged ahead, running the fastest 5km split of the race between 35-40km (17:29), to stretch the others out in her wake.
The Ravenna Marathon – City of Art (ITA) has officially received the patronage of the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO).
The patronage represents recognition of the work carried out by the race organisers, the Ravenna Runners Club and of the qualities of the city of Ravenna, which is increasingly focussing its tourism offering on culture and history.
UNESCO patronage is moral recognition for the event and does not carry any financial support or involvement by the UN organisation.
The Italian UNESCO National Commission said in a letter that it had accepted the request for the patronage of the Ravenna Marathon “in consideration of the significant value of the initiative aimed at encouraging a more active use of our UNESCO World Heritage by combining sport, art and culture”.
The PZU Warsaw Half Marathon (POL) will take place on Sat 23 May 2020, not Sat 30 May 2020 as previously published.
The United States Anti-Doping Agency (USADA) has announced a ban against Alberto Salazar, the former star marathon runner who is head coach for the Nike Oregon Project.
Salazar, coach to some of the world’s top distance runners, has been barred for four years from the sport for doping violations, USADA announced on 30 September.
The ban resulted from violations including trafficking in testosterone, tampering with the doping control process and administering improper infusions of L-carnitine, a naturally occurring substance that converts fat into energy, reads the anti-doping agency’s statement. As head coach of the Nike Oregon Project, Salazar, 61, has trained such stars as Great Britain’s Mo Farah, a four-time Olympic champion on the track; Galen Rupp, the top American marathon runner; and Sifan Hassan of the Netherlands, who set a world record in the women’s mile in July and finished first in the 10,000 metres at the world track and field championships in Doha, Qatar on 28 September. Farah stopped training with Salazar in 2017.
Salazar won the New York City Marathon three times and the Boston Marathon once.
Jeffrey Brown, an endocrinologist from Houston who has worked with Salazar, also received a four-year ban, USADA said. Both have denied wrongdoing. Representatives for Salazar, Brown and Nike could not immediately be reached for comment.
Travis Tygart, the chief executive of the anti-doping agency, said in a statement that Salazar and Brown had “demonstrated that winning was more important than the health and well-being of the athletes they were sworn to protect.”
Kenenisa Bekele made a sensational return to his international best with victory at the BMW Berlin Marathon on Sunday 29 September, missing the world record by just two seconds.
For good measure, the 37-year-old Ethiopian set a national record and the fastest time in the world this year. Only his great Kenyan rival Eliud Kipchoge, who ran 2:01:39 here in Berlin last year, ranks above him in the world all-time list.
Bekele knows all too well what it is like to miss the world record by a narrow margin. In 2016 he won in 2:03:03 which was just six seconds outside the then world record. There are also historical precedents for such narrow misses in marathon history: in 1985 the Welshman Steve Jones ran within one second of the world record in Chicago.
Behind Kenenisa Bekele his fellow Ethiopian Birhanu Legese finished second in 2:02:48 to become the third fastest marathoner in history. Third place went to Sisay Lemma, running a personal best of 2:03:36 to complete the Ethiopian clean sweep. The best German runner was Jens Nerkamp who ran 2:14:54 to finish 37th.
In good weather conditions Ashete Bekere contributed her share to the Ethiopian celebrations with victory in her best time of 2:20:14, the fifth fastest women’s time of the year. Last year’s winner Gladys Cherono of Kenya dropped out at around 30km while Mare Dibaba of Ethiopia finished second in 2:20:21. Sally Chepyego, a teammate of world record holder Eliud Kipchoge, took third place in 2:21:06.
Melat Kejeta, Ethiopian-born but since March a German citizen, made a scintillating marathon debut to finish sixth in 2:23:57 and become the second fastest German woman ever in the marathon.
A record number of 46,983 runners from 150 countries entered the 46th BMW Berlin Marathon.
Gladys Cherono is keen to write another chapter of history on Sunday in the BMW Berlin Marathon. A year ago the Kenyan broke the course record which had stood for 13 years – and a fourth triumph here would give her more wins than any other female runner.
Cherono has a further goal in breaking her own course record of 2:18:11 hours.
While the elite are aiming to produce world class times of under 2:20, Melat Kejeta is hoping to run 2:22, which would be a sensational debut at the distance for the former Ethiopian who received German citizenship only in March. The Olympic qualifying time for the women’s marathon in next year’s Games in Tokyo is 2:29:30, a target also shared by the home favourite Anna Hahner.
Also among the favourites should be Mare Dibaba, even though the 2015 World Marathon Champion and 2016 Olympic bronze medallist hasn’t shown her best form recently. “My aim is to run at the level of my personal best,” explained Dibaba, who has twice achieved the distinction of running 2:19:52.
This year the BMW Berlin Marathon has already established a record with 46,983 runners entered. “We were able to increase the limit by 3,000 runners and with 150 nations represented, this is also a record. It will really be a world of runners on the startline,” said Jürgen Lock, CEO of the organizers, SCC EVENTS.
Taking part in Italian marathons and half marathons just got easier for foreign athletes.
Runners who are not members of recognized sport clubs in their own countries can finally participate in Italian races without having to present a medical certificate. From now on they’ll simply sign a liability waiver.
The Italian Athletics Federation (FIDAL) has amended a regulation which, until now, required organizers to only accept medical certificates that conformed to the Italian legal system.
This is a really important turning point settled thanks to the intense and favorable cooperation between the Italian Athletics Federation and the event organizers.
Finally, all Italian sports events of international level will have the opportunity to welcome all those foreign citizens, with tourist-sporting goals, who had always run elsewhere due to the Italian bureaucratic difficulties.
The participation regulations for foreign athletes registered for sports clubs affiliated to foreign federations remain unchanged.
Organisers of the 37th edition of “Athens Marathon. The Authentic” expect this year for the first time to welcome 20,000 marathon runners from around the world to run on the original course from Marathon to Athens.
Almost 125 years since the first Olympic Marathon at the start of the modern Olympic era in Athens in 1896, race organisers SEGAS, the Hellenic Athletics Federation, are anticipating a new record participation.
Adding running events at shorter distances a total of more than 60,000 athletes will run through the Attica region and Athens. This record total puts the Authentic Marathon among the biggest running events anywhere in the world.
The marathon race begins in its historic setting of the town of Marathon. The marathon course of 42.195k, officially measured by the IAAF and AIMS, is practically identical with that of the 1896 Olympic Marathon and corresponds exactly to the course for the 2004 Olympic Games in Athens.
Ten years ago there were 10,000 athletes running through Athens in races of various distances, but in November this year there will be more than five times as many.
An innovation this year is that the 10k road race, which hitherto has been staged in parallel with the marathon, will now be run in the early evening on the previous day in central Athens.
The Marathon Expo where start numbers will be distributed will open on Wednesday, extending the duration of the “Athens Marathon. The Authentic“ to a five instead of four-day programme.
Together with the Association of International Marathons and Distance Races (AIMS), the Hellenic Athletics Federation (SEGAS), will once again stage a gala on Friday evening before the Marathon and an international Marathon Symposium on Saturday morning. During the course of the Gala the male and female winners of the annual AIMS Best Marathon Runner Award will be announced.
Every marathon runner who crosses the finish line in the Panathenaic Stadium on November 10 will receive the first medal of a new series. The concept for the medals covers a period of eight years and will reflect the history of the marathon race. This year’s medal will show the Battle of Marathon.
Could spectators witness a new women’s course record at the Mainova Frankfurt Marathon on 27 October? Two women who could be about to produce a world class time of around 2:20 are among the favourites.
Valary Jemeli of Kenya has a best of 2:20:53 while her Ethiopian rival Alemu Kebede has achieved 2:22:52. Alemu also showed last weekend that she is in formidable form in preparation for the Mainova Frankfurt Marathon, running her fastest ever half marathon in Copenhagen.
Two European runners who could also feature are Ana Dulce Felix of Portugal and Britain’s Stephanie Twell as well as the home contender Katharina Steinruck.
“We have put together a strong women’s elite field once again and expect a high-class and possibly thrilling race. Our goal is to one day have a sub 2:20 course record. It would of course be great if we could achieve it this year,” said race director Jo Schindler. With 14,000 runners expected to take part, the organisers say places remain available for this IAAF Gold Label race, the top category awarded for road races worldwide.
Last year the Ethiopian Meskerem Assefa improved Frankfurt’s course record to an impressive 2:20:36. It is highly possible that with good weather conditions this time could be under threat on October 27 and the city beside the River Main will stage its first ever sub-2:20 time by a woman. Valary Jemeli has certainly gone close to that barrier on several occasions. The Kenyan has broken 2:22 three times with her best achieved in Berlin two years ago when she finished third in 2:20:53. A strong sign of her potential for sub-2:20 is a personal best of 66:14 for the half marathon, set this year.
A strong performance at half marathon is also a reason for making Alemu Kebede one of the favourites. The Ethiopian finished fourth in a highly competitive women’s field for the half marathon in Copenhagen last Sunday, improving her personal best to 66:43. In spring this year she set another personal best to win the Rome Marathon in 2:22:52.
Ana Dulce Felix has been one of the best European marathon runners for some time now. The 36-year-old Portuguese will be making her debut at the Mainova Frankfurt Marathon. She has a personal best of 2:25:15 and took 16th place in the 2016 Olympic Games marathon in Rio.
A runner who might well use Frankfurt as a springboard to establishing herself among the European Marathon elite is Stephanie Twell. The 30-year-old Briton was once regarded as a potential successor to Paula Radcliffe after some outstanding performances at junior level but subsequently suffered injuries which hindered her development. She made her marathon debut in Valencia last December, finishing seventh in 2:30:14. This could be a good omen for a marathon breakthrough.
Katharina Steinruck will be running the Mainova Frankfurt Marathon for the third year in succession. The 29-year-old competes for the home club Eintracht Frankfurt and is making her first appearance at the distance since heel surgery. Her target will be the qualifying time for the Tokyo Olympics next year which is 2:29:30. Steinruck, better known under her maiden name of Katharina Heinig, has a personal best of 2:28:34.
Next Sunday Kenenisa Bekele hopes to bounce back once again at the BMW Berlin Marathon, a race he won in thrilling fashion three years ago with a personal best of 2:03:03. Gladys Cherono aims to win a fourth Berlin title which would make her the sole record winner of the event.
While Vivian Cheruiyot had to cancel her start due to an Achilles tendon problem there are still five women on the start list with personal bests of sub 2:22. Four men feature personal records of sub 2:05, all of them from Ethiopia. A number of athletes will attempt to achieve the Olympic qualifying times of 2:11:30 and 2:29:30 for men and women respectively on the fast Berlin course.
Organisers recorded a record entry number of 46,983 runners from 150 nations. Along with races in Tokyo, Boston, London, Chicago and New York, the BMW Berlin Marathon is part of the Abbott World Marathon Majors. For the first time the BMW Berlin Marathon will be the final event in this year’s series.
After a series of disappointing results it remains to be seen in what sort of form Kenenisa Bekele is on Sunday. It is likely that his strongest rivals will be fellow Ethiopians. Birhanu Legese took the title in Tokyo in March with 2:04:48. In 2018 he made a spectacular debut with 2:04:15 in Dubai where he was sixth. Two more of the Berlin entries were in action in Dubai in 2018 and ran their personal bests there: Leul Gebrselassie was the runner-up in 2:04:02 while Sisay Lemma clocked 2:04:08 in fifth position. While Felix Kandie, who has a PB of 2:06:03, is the fastest Kenyan on the start list, two fellow countrymen could be in for a surprise – training partners Abel Kipchumba and Bethwel Yegon showed very good form in the build-up to their marathon debuts in Berlin.
After victories in 2015 and 2017 Gladys Cherono achieved her third triumph in the BMW Berlin Marathon last year with a course record of 2:18:11. The Kenyan may well have to run another sub 2:20 to win title number four because there is a group of runners who have the potential to achieve such a time as well. One Ethiopians is on the start list, who has already achieved a sub 2:20 time: Mare Dibaba, who won the world marathon title in 2015 and one year later took the bronze medal at the Rio Olympics, has a personal record of 2:19:52. Another prominent Ethiopian athlete on the start list is Meseret Defar. She is the double Olympic 5,000m champion (2004 und 2012). Meseret Defar has the potential to run much faster than her current PB of 2:23:33.
Sheila Pereira, a 42-year old American runner from the town of Worcester, Massachusetts, mistakenly entered herself in the Worcester City Half Marathon on 15 September thinking that it was in her home town – rather than 5000km away in the English Midlands.
Undeterred, she recorded a 21.1km route on Strava that she ran on the same day as the race and sent it to the organisers as proof of her ‘participation’ in the event. They responded by sending her a finishers’ T-shirt and medal accompanied by a message inviting her to come over for next year’s race.
No Boston Marathon entrant would make the mistake of entering the UK Marathon of the same name, which advertises itself as the flattest marathon in the country, but the Worcester event’s website uses the generic “.com” suffix rather than “.co.uk” which might have alerted Ms Pereira to the location. The name of the race organisers, “Events of the North”, may have served to confuse – as the English Worcester is very much in the Midlands, while there are only six states in the continental USA wholly north of Massachusetts.
Organisers of the Valencia Marathon Trinidad Alfonso EDP and Half Marathon have taken a new collaborative step to boost the fight against doping.
The organisers, running club SD Correcaminos and Valencia City Council have signed an agreement with the Athletics Integrity Unit (AIU), a body that is independent of the IAAF, to make extra-tough checks for the races, which will be held on the 27th of October and the 1st of December in Valencia – Ciudad del Running.
The agreement was promoted by Fundación Trinidad Alfonso, the main collaborator in both races, to join with SD Correcaminos to ensure fair play in the sport.
The organisers of both races will make a voluntary contribution of EUR 25,000 to the AIU to carry out spot anti-doping checks of the main guest runners with a view to detecting illegal and fraudulent practices and thus protect the integrity and reputation of the two Valencian races.
This agreement follows the strategy adopted by the World Marathon Majors in their fight against doping, given that the world’s best marathons have also signed similar agreements with the AIU.
The Athletics Integrity Unit has undertaken to carry out all measures bearing on checking athletes’ biological passports, and to conduct the various routine anti-doping tests. SD Correcaminos in turn will give the AIU its full support and supply technical data on the elite athletes, their travel plans, stop-overs, etc. to order to facilitate testing and boost its efficacy.
Beyond the terms of the agreement and on its own initiative, the organisers of the 2019 Valencia Marathon Trinidad Alfonso EDP and Half Marathon have also decided not to invite professional athletes who have been found guilty of doping. The idea is to send a clear message: Valencia only wants athletes who set records based upon exemplary conduct and fair play.
Under the agreement signed with the AIU, the trials will boost the fight against doping and ensure equality of opportunities for all those taking part to set records that reflect the highest sporting standards.
“I want to thank the organisers of the Valencia marathon for making this commitment to clean sport. The MoU once again showcases that the key stakeholders in road running are being proactive in addressing integrity challenges in this segment of the sport of athletics,” commented Brett Clothier, Head of the AIU. “The 2019 editions of these races will be amongst the most well controlled sporting events in the world from an anti-doping perspective. And the exciting thing is that in 2020 many other road race events under the IAAF Label Road Races program will be able to join them in making this claim,” he added.
President of SD Correcaminos Paco Borao added: “I am very happy to embark on this relationship with the AIU. This is important for the credibility of our races and our sport. As President of AIMS (Association of International Marathons and Distance Races) I’d also like to encourage our members to also commit themselves to this funding mechanism and participate fully in the fight against doping in road running.”
The Athens Half Marathon (GRE) will take place on Sun 22 March 2020, not Sun 15 March 2020 as previously published.
Geoffrey Kamworor set a new world record of 58:01 at the Copenhagen Half Marathon on 15 September taking 17 seconds off the 58:18 run by Abraham Kiptum in the Valencia Half Marathon last year.
The 26-year-old Kenyan returned to the Danish capital, where he won the first of his three world half-marathon titles, to run his first non-championship half marathon for almost five years.
After passing 5km (13:53) in a large group in Kamworor edged the pace up to pass 10km in 27:34 and find himself heading the field. His reaction was to redouble the effort as he forged clear with a 13:31 split for 10–15km – all the more remarkable for having to battle through a brief but heavy shower in the 14th kilometre. His time at 15km (41:05) was the fastest ever recorded for the distance.
Over the final 5km his pace dropped marginally but he passed 20km (55.00) in another “world best” before breaking the tape and the world record, 75 seconds (450m) ahead of second-placed Bernard Kipkorir.
“It is very emotional for me to set this record. And doing it in Copenhagen, where I won my first world title, adds something to it,” Kamworor said after the race.
In the year 1994, thanks to the initiative of Camacol Antioquia and the Athletics League of Antioquia, the dream of a road race began in Medellín, the first in Colombia.
Today, 25 years later, the Medellín Marathon, with its four distances – 42K, 21K, 10K and 5K –has become the most important race in the country and one of the most traditional in Latin America.
For this twenty-fifth edition, on September 8, 15,000 runners from more than 262 towns in Colombia and more than 45 countries are expected.
“This Sunday, September 8, 2019 we will perform a safe and very special marathon,” said Gustavo Orozco, director of the race, to explain the preparations prepared to ensure the safety of the marathon. The operation will involve logistics personnel, police officers and more than 150 traffic agents with units that will support the route as it passes through Medellín, Envigado and Sabaneta. The main deployment will be in the streets of the race, where total closures will be mounted on the vast majority of the roads and an important medical reinforcement with ambulances, roadside assistance posts and expert personnel led by the Vigías Group and with the support from CES University.
Gustavo Orozco explained that public transport services will be limited between 05:00 and 13:00 and runners will be invited to use the Metro, reaching the finish line through San Antonio station.
In the first edition of the event in 1995, two thousand people from five countries participated – and only a 1/3 marathon was run, i.e. 14 kilometres. The 21K was added the following year.
By 2013, the Marathon had the participation of more than 12 thousand athletes and in 2018 it approached 15 thousand athletes from Colombia and abroad. In the celebration of its 25 years, the Medellin Marathon 2019 hopes to reach a new participation record.
In a little under two weeks’ time, on Sunday 15 September, the Sanlam Cape Town Marathon will take place in the “Mother City”.
Race organisers have called on local residents to come out and cheer on the more than 26,000 runners in the race, which organisers say is fast becoming known as Africa’s “must-run” city marathon.
Olympic long-distance runner Elana van Zyl-Meyer, ambassador for the marathon, knows from personal experience what goes into preparation for an undertaking of this kind, and how important spectators are on the big day. “A marathon is a long personal journey. For some of us it takes sheer will and guts, while for others it’s a relative breeze. But either way, there’s nothing more energising and comforting than when you see a group of supporters cheer you on from the sidelines – it’s pure joy.”
Spectator zones have been set up along the 42.2km marathon route, giving supporters frontline views of the course action as well as an opportunity to enjoy live music and dance, and suppo. Some of the zones are co-hosted by local charities involved with this year’s event.
The Hengshui Lake International Marathon (CHN) will take place on Sun 22 September 2019, not Sat 28 September 2019 as previously published.
The 10K Valencia Trinidad Alfonso, which will be held in parallel with the Valencia Marathon on the 1st of December, will be the last edition of this event in Valencia. That is why an attempt will be made to set a new world record over this distance to mark the occasion.
The Organisers of the 10K – SD Correcaminos (running club) and Valencia City Council – have selected the Ugandan athlete Joshua Cheptegei to make the attempt to beat the world record, currently set by the Kenyan runner Leonard Patrick Komon (26:44) in Utrecht on the 26th of September 2010.
Cheptegei’s next objective is the World Championships in Doha. After that, he will train hard for two months to be in tip-top form to compete in Valencia on the 1st of December.
The Ugandan athlete said: “I want to beat the world record in Valencia, Ciudad del Running. I know it is a very fast circuit and that it has an amazing finish. That’s why I hope to make history in what will be the last edition of the 10K Valencia Trinidad Alfonso”.
Jim Ralston, who passed away on 23 August 2019 at the age of 70, was for many years the race director of the Niagara Falls Marathon. As such, along with his wife Ruth, he mounted a successful bid to host the 14th World Congress of AIMS at the Sheraton by the Falls Hotel in Niagara Falls, Ontario (CAN) in October 2002.
He was prominent in helping many other races in the local area and developed many friendships within AIMS through his regular attendance at AIMS Congresses right through from the 12th Congress in Turin (ITA) 2001 to the 20th Congress in Durban (RSA) 2014.
Originally from Scotland, Jim migrated to Canada at the age of 21. He settled at Niagara Falls and threw himself into voluntary work in support of the local community. He was an active sportsman and a particularly keen runner and member of the Niagara Track Club. His athletic interests gradually evolved into a second career as race director of the Niagara Falls Marathon.
Both Ruth and Jim regularly helped their close friends Les and Buffy Wright at the Lake Tahoe Marathon and often came to Maui to assist with the Maui Oceanfront Marathon.
Jim fought and survived prostate cancer back in 2007 and more recently had a heart valve replaced. He died on 23 August 2019 from a heart infection and kidney failure.
The Milton Keynes Marathon & Half Marathon (GBR) will take place Sat 2 May 2020—Sun 3 May 2020, not from 3 May—4 May as previously published.
Being ‘on the pill’ might soon start to have an entirely new meaning for athletes.
This pill is a piece of electronic gadgetry that athletes would take few hours before competing in unusually hot conditions – like those likely to be faced in the upcoming IAAF World Championships in Doha, Qatar and next year in the Tokyo Olympic Games.
The pill is designed to detect and relay the athlete’s core body temperature so that they can be monitored to safeguard against heat exhaustion. The pill passes through the digestive system in the normal way, and would be excreted sometime between 12–48 hours after the race.
The pills have already been trialled by some national federations in the endurance events – primarily Marathon and Walks – and will be offered to athletes on a voluntary basis at the World Championships in Doha starting at the ends of September.
A Nordic runner, who can keep up with the East African runners? The answer is Norwegian Sondre Moen, who has been confirmed to line up at the Copenhagen Half Marathon in September.
Sondre Moen established his name on the international running scene back in 2017. First he clocked 59:48 minutes on the half marathon distance. Only a month later, he won the Fukuola Marathon in Japan to set a a new European record.
On that occasion, he defeated both Stephan Kiprotich from Uganda, a former Olympic and World half marathon Champion, and Bedan Karoki from Kenya, who earlier that year came second at London Marathon.
Now he has the third fastest half marathon time in Europe ever and was the first non-African athlete to break 2:06 on the marathon distance.
Since his breakthrough, Sondre Moen has been injured for periods, but now he is back in shape and ready to run fast at the CPH Half.
“It is a flat course with Nordic weather conditions and a strong field that will be running fast. That is what I’m looking forward to about the CPH Half. And if it’s the right day, I might even set a new personal best,” says Sondre Moen.
“My season started out well as I set a new Norwegian 5 km record with a time of 13:37. In March, I won a half marathon in Gdynia clocking 61:18 on a hilly and windy course. My training went well, but then I was injured, and was unable to prepare for the track season,” says the Norwegian super runner.
Nonetheless, Sondre Moen has just won the Norwegian 10,000 metres championships and came in third on the 5,000 metres.
His focus is on the longer distances, which is where his has his strengths as a runner.
“I like to run for hours in a fast pace but without a sprint finish, which makes me better over long distances such as half marathon and marathon,” says Sondre Moen. “I have a great base after 10-15 years of training, and I am confident that I will be back stronger than ever. My dream is to win an Olympic marathon medal,” he says.
In 1989 the Košice Peace Marathon was held just a few weeks before the ‘Velvet Revolution’, which brought radical changes in what was then Czechoslovak society.
The race also had a radical change of its own. After 63 years the course was changed from simply going out-back to the turnaround point at Seňa to a loop almost entirely within the city. This, later modified and improved several times, remains the basis of the present course.
The 1989 event was only the ninth edition to incorporate a women’s race and the winner this time was home-grown Alena Peterková in a new course record of 2:31:28 – nearly nine minutes ahead of her North Korean competition. Her record lasted 20 years. Peterková later placed fourth at Boston in a personal best of 2:25:16.
Another home grown runner, Karel David, won the men’s race. In an even-paced run he beat his Soviet competition by 13 seconds. It was the 12th Czechoslovak victory in the men’s race, achieved by nine different runners. At the time David ranked among the best marathoners in Europe. He started the Olympic Marathons in Seoul and Barcelona and won marathons in Vienna, Bonn and Palermo. In 1991 in Tokyo he ran a personal best of 2:11:12.
970 men and 31 women crossed the finish line that year which was again located at Lokomotive Stadium.
The Sfax Marathon Olive Trees (TUN) will take place on Sun 3 November 2019, not Sun 13 October 2019 as previously published.
Famous for all the wrong reasons, Cuban-American Rosie Ruiz died on 7 July this year, 39 years after her impersonation of a Marathon winner in the 1980 BAA Boston Marathon.
She did not look the part as she crossed the finish line, without showing the least sign of distress, in 2:31:56 – well ahead of the race favourite Jacqui Gareau of Canada.
Gareau protested that she had not been overtaken during the race by any other female. Testimony from spectators who had seen Ruiz ‘jump in’ to the race only a few hundred metres from the finish soon made it look like a clear case of cheating. But this was after she had been ‘crowned’ with a laurel wreath and presented with a winner’s medal.
She basked in her ‘victory’ during a TV interview and some reporters ran with the story that a new marathon star was born. Others were unconvinced. Even for just a two-time marathon finisher she was totally ignorant about the sport – even what shoes she wore (“Brookes Brothers” rather than Brooks the athletic brand).
Then a photographer came forward who had travelled with Ruiz on the New York Subway during her purported participation in the race a few months previously (in order to qualify for the Boston Marathon). In a tradition started in the early Olympic Games Marathons (1806, 1904) she had taken a ride for most of the route and covered only the last few hundred metres of the race, then acted out the same deceit in Boston.
It took a week before Boston Marathon organisers awarded the victory to Gareau but Ruiz would not admit her guilt and never returned her medal.
Benjamin Basil Heatley was a British runner who mainly competed in the marathon. Born in Kenilworth in the English Midlands he competed for the renowned club Coventry Godiva.
He filled the void left by the retirement of Jim Peters in 1954 and before Ron Hill and Heatley’s clubmate Bill Adcocks had seriously tested themselves at the Marathon. Hill finished 17 places behind Heatley in the 1964 Tokyo Olympic Marathon while Adcocks only made his debut at the distance that year.
On 13 June 1964 Heatley broke the world record for the marathon on the famous Polytechnic Marathon course from Windsor Castle to Polytechnic Stadium in Chiswick, West London. His 2:13:55 surpassed Buddy Edelen’s (an American runner long resident in UK) world best from the previous year’s race by 33 seconds.
Four months later, on 21 October 1964, Heatley ran in the Tokyo Olympic Marathon – where defending champion Abebe Bikila won another Olympic gold medal in another world record time (2:12:11). Heatley managed to stay close to Japan’s Kokichi Tsuburaya and came past him on the stadium track to win the silver medal, equalling the highest-ever placing by a British runner in an Olympic Marathon.
He ran the International Cross-Country Championships seven times between 1957 to 1964. He was second to teammate Frank Sando at his first outing in the senior race and became world champion at the 1961 International Cross-Country Championships.
He maintained an interest and a presence in British athletics throughout the rest of his life and in 2014 was invited to Japan as part of the 50th anniversary celebrations of the Tokyo Olympic Games, where he met with the family of Abebe Bikila.
The Ras Al Khaimah Half Marathon (UAE) will take place on Fri 21 February 2020, not Fri 14 February 2020 as previously published.
The Dead Sea Marathon Israel (ISR) will take place on Fri 5 February 2021, not Fri 29 January 2021 as previously published.
The Standard Chartered Taipei Charity Marathon (TPE) will take place on Sun 19 January 2020, not Sun 5 January 2020 as previously published.
While the event may be over for another year, the golden glow of the Gold Coast Marathon (AUS) can still be seen by those in need.
Over 240,000 AUD (150,000 EUR) has been raised for charity through entry donations and on the fundraising platform everydayhero by those participating in the event on 6–7 July, with the total continuing to grow.
The Gold Coast Marathon’s official charity, Cancer Council Queensland, has already received 56,000 AUD, including 20,000 AUD through generous donations from runners when entering and the remainder via individual and group fundraising efforts.
Cancer Council Queensland CEO Chris McMillan said the Gold Coast Marathon was a great opportunity for the community to band together and work towards something bigger than their own race.
“We are extremely proud to be the official beneficiary of the Gold Coast Marathon and are grateful to all those who raised funds on our behalf or donated their time as a volunteer,” Ms McMillan said.
Team CCQ is a community fitness movement founded by Cancer Council Queensland to encourage runners, gym-goers and fitness enthusiasts across Queensland to raise funds for cancer research, prevention and support programs.
“We have over 200 Team CCQ members across the state and more than 100 people laced up for the cause at this year’s Gold Coast Marathon,” said Ms McMillan.
The top fundraising individual through everydayhero is Gold Coast local Ashley Chapman who has raised an impressive 14,581 AUD and counting for the MND and Me Foundation.
Ashley, 25, touched by his father’s diagnosis of Motor Neurone Disease two years ago, was determined to do all he could to give back to the foundation that continues to support his father.
“The foundation does a great job by loaning him equipment, organising carers and providing support coordination for Dad,” Ashley said.
Ashley was part of a group of over 200 raising money for the charity who participated in various races held as part of the Gold Coast Marathon race weekend, with the group raising a total of just under 55,000 AUD.
Ashley was cheered through the famous Gold Coast Marathon finish chute by his proud dad, Peter, making the 21.1km journey all worth it for Ashley.
The Gold Coast Marathon had no shortage of those attempting something a little different to draw donation dollars to their cause, with friends from local running group, the Mountain Goat Trail Runners, breaking the world record for the fastest marathon run in a four-person costume.
Brisbane friends Ben Jansen, Jason Luke, Christopher Dale and Andrew Hauck dressed as superheroes, joined together by a silver aeroplane made of ducting to raise over 7,300 AUD for charity Save the Children.
Another daring runner, Dylan Nicholson from the Gold Coast, bared all to raise over 6,000 AUD for mental health charity the Black Dog Institute by running the marathon in Speedos.
Thousands of jumpers and other items of clothing left at the Gold Coast Marathon start line are also going to a good cause. Local charity Set Free Care will be giving them to those in need or selling them in their Southport Op Shop.
Four world-class Ethiopian runners have set their sights on breaking the recent Kenyan dominance when the BMW Berlin-Marathon takes place on September 29: Guye Adola, who finished second in an unofficial world record debut two years ago in Berlin, as well as Leul Gebrselassie, Sisay Lemma and Birhanu Legese all possess the potential to win the BMW Berlin-Marathon.
Gebrselassie, Lemma and Legese have each triumphed over the marathon distance in the past ten months, running top-class times and all have personal bests in the region of 2:04.
“We expect a men’s race with top performances. There’s not much likelihood of a world record attempt but the times are likely to be very fast. In addition, the battle for victory could be a thrilling one that may well last until the final few kilometres,” said the race director Mark Milde, who is still recruiting more top performers.
In the past ten years Ethiopian runners have only won the men’s title in Berlin on two occasions. Haile Gebrselassie won in 2009 and Kenenisa Bekele in 2016. Otherwise Kenyans have dominated, breaking the world record four times. The most recent occasion was last year when Eliud Kipchoge ran a sensational 2:01:39 but he will not be running this year.
Birhanu Legese is the one runner among the Ethiopian quartet who has won an Abbott World Marathon Majors race this year. The 24-year-old took the title in Tokyo in March with 2:04:48 in only the third marathon of his career. In 2018 he made a spectacular debut with 2:04:15 in Dubai which put him straightaway among the marathon world-class. Even so, his time was only good enough for sixth in an extraordinarily fast race. Legese has already won one big race in Berlin, emerging as the surprise winner of the city’s Half Marathon with 59:45 in 2015.
Two more of the quartet for Berlin on September 29 were in action in Dubai 2018 and ran their personal bests there: Leul Gebrselassie and Sisay Lemma. Gebrselassie is not related to the former marathon world record holder and multiple Berlin winner Haile, but has strong credentials of his own, finishing runner-up in 2:04:02 in the race in the United Arab Emirates 18 months ago. In December the 25-year-old confirmed his ability in setting a course record of 2:04:31 to win the Valencia Marathon. In April this year he finished eighth in London’s traditionally highly competitive field.
Sisay Lemma improved his best by a big margin to 2:04:08 to finish fifth in Dubai in 2018. At the end of last October the 28-year-old produced another fine performance to break the course record in Ljubljana with 2:04:58. Three years ago he was fourth in the BMW Berlin-Marathon with 2:06:56. He marked 2015 with victories in Vienna and Frankfurt marathons.
Guye Adola has every reason to have fond memories of Berlin on his return to the race. Two years ago the 28-year-old ran an unofficial world record debut to finish second in 2:03:46 – official world records for marathon debuts are not given. He even managed to put a superstar such as Eliud Kipchoge under pressure, leading until just before 40k from the Kenyan. Since that debut the Half Marathon World Championship bronze medallist in 2014 has struggled with injuries but Adola intends to put all that behind him at the BMW Berlin-Marathon this year.
Member races of the Association of International Marathons and Distance Races (AIMS) have been encouraged to submit nominations for this year’s gala awards.
The Special Awards – the Green Award, Social Award and Lifetime Achievement Award – will be presented at the annual AIMS gala in November in Athens, Greece, together with the Best Marathon Runner award which is given each year to the world’s most outstanding distance athletes.
AIMS President Paco Borao urged the association’s member races to consider entering for the Special Awards, which recognise outstanding efforts in the areas of ecology and social engagement.
The Best Marathon Runner Awards Gala on Friday 8 November, now taking place for the seventh time, is followed by the AIMS Marathon Symposium on Saturday 9 November, at which race representatives and guest experts discuss developments in distance running.
Paco Borao said in a letter to member races: “Continuing and developing the close collaboration we set up back in 2007 along with our friends here in Greece the Hellenic Athletics Federation and ‘Athens Marathon. The Authentic’, we have already started the preparations for the 7th edition of the AIMS Best Marathon Runner Awards Gala and the 13th AIMS Marathon Symposium. Along with the important support of the Region of Attica as Co-Organiser and the significant help of the Greek National Tourism Organisation and Athens International Airport as official sponsors, we are all working towards this direction to organize successful events, promoting our sport Marathon as the previous years.”
The topic of the Marathon Symposium this year is “Technology and Mass Running Events”. Afterwards race delegates will have the opportunity to attend the Marathon Flame lighting at the Marathon Tomb archaeological site. Finally, on Sunday 10 November the host race, “Athens Marathon. The Authentic” takes place.
The Palestine Marathon has evolved rapidly over the years. In seven years, the total number of participants has increased from 400 to over 8,000.
The percentage of female runners has increased from 37 percent to almost 50 percent (which is significant because the denial of free movement is a feature of sex inequality in Palestinian society and hinders efforts to ensure respect for the rights of women), and the number of foreign runners has increased from 220 to 1,700, helping Palestinian efforts to tell their story and raise international awareness of their situation.
The Palestine Marathon also aims to establish a running culture in Palestine. It attracts thousands of Palestinian and international participants and brings attention to one of the human rights that is under threat in the State of Palestine: the freedom of movement.
In 2019, participants ran for various causes such as human rights and the rights of the disabled, women, children, and others; others competed for organizations that included EU for Palestine, Team Palestine (Every Mile Saves a Child), Right to Education, and more. Many cultural activities were offered by partners, local organizations, and the public sector.
In 2020, the Palestine Marathon hopes to achieve the participation of 10,000 local and international runners. Starting at the Church of the Nativity, in the center of Bethlehem’s Old City, its route takes runners through the town, two refugee camps (Aida and Dheisheh), and along the Wall.
Katharina Steinruck will run in the Mainova Frankfurt Marathon on 27 October for the third year in succession.
For the 29-year-old her marathon comeback after an operation on her heel is the chance to qualify for the Tokyo Olympics in 2020. The qualifying time is 2:29:30.
The organisers of the Frankfurt Marathon expect up to 14,000 runners to take part in the race, and places are still available.
Katharina Steinruck – still better known to many under her maiden name Katharina Heinig – is the first prominent female runner to be signed up for this year’s Mainova Frankfurt Marathon. “We are very pleased that Katharina has decided to run in the Mainova Frankfurt Marathon again and we will offer her the best possible conditions to run an Olympic qualifying time,” says race director Jo Schindler.
“I am happy that we can present a top German runner who is also a local champion. Many Frankfurt citizens will identify with her, as she lives and works here in the city,” he adds.
“It is always something special to be able to run the marathon in your home town,” says Katharina Steinruck, who belongs to the police sports team of the state of Hessen. “I have lived in Frankfurt for 15 years and of course I have many friends and colleagues here who will come to cheer me on. I am already looking forward to the awesome atmosphere.”
In the previous two years Katharina Steinruck made a strong showing and achieved time of slightly under 2:30. In 2017 she unexpectedly became German women’s champion in 2:29:29 and came eighth. Despite a short training time after starting the Euro championship in August, in 2018 she reached the finish line in the Frankfurt Festhalle in 2:29:55.
After an operation on her heel last November Steinruck returned to running to win the 7.9km city run in Aschaffenburg in May. Looking forward she is now preparing for the race in her home town on 27 October. Currently she is training in the pre-Alpine Allgäu region of Bavaria.
The Sanlam Cape Town Marathon is appealing for charities to get involved in this year’s springtime event. Its Run4Change programme aims to make an impact in key areas including climate action, affordable and clean energy, health and wellbeing, as well as peace.
The Marathon has built up a network of over 50 charities that use the event to leverage change in their respective communities. Two of these are Township Farmers, which creates small-scale organic farming in previously disadvantaged communities, and Greenpop, which plants indigenous trees, gardens and forest gardens, and runs development workshops and environmental festivals. Township Farmers is raising funds to plant 2019 trees in Khayelitsha schools and surrounding neighbourhoods, while Greenpop offers free entrance to the 10km Peace Run/Walk if runners are able to raise 840 ZAR (54 EUR), the cost of seven trees.
Aiming to increase last year’s 2.5M ZAR raised for charity to 3M ZAR, race ambassador and Olympian Elana Van Zyl Meyer is calling on a greater number of charities to seriously consider the benefits and enormous potential the marathon can offer as a platform to yield moral and financial support for the issues they are tackling.
Sanlam’s Head of Brand, Mariska Oosthuizen says “Our sponsorship of the Marathon is very much aligned with our vision of making a positive difference in people’s lives. We deal on a daily basis with one out of four people impacted by cancer, so we try to join hands with people and decrease the incidence of this dreaded disease. This year we’ve extend our partnership with the Cancer Association of South Africa (CANSA), asking runners and supporters to raise funds to help beat cancer.”
Race director for the marathon, Janet Welham says “Our goal has always been twofold: to give marathoners a truly world-class city marathon sporting experience, and to create meaningful change in the areas of the environment, society and the economy.” Welham has been appointed by the Association of International Marathons and Distance Races (AIMS) as a founding member of its sustainability commission, which works with marathons around the world to create a greater degree of environmental sustainability in their events.
Environmentally, the Marathon has developed a programme to reduce or reuse litter, creating zero waste to landfill, conserving water and reducing energy, offsetting carbon, and supporting enterprise development. Sanlam has contributed meaningfully towards the carbon offsetting programme.
The Marathon has had an equally positive effect in the areas of health and wellness, with no fewer than 16 health-focused charities using it to generate funds. Alongside this are the Western Cape government’s healthy-lifestyles initiative, a women’s gathering that focuses on issues, trends and solutions related to women’s health in relation to sport, and the Say No to Doping programmes run by UNESCO and Drug Free Sport. The Marathon will this year be hosting the Sri Chinmoy Oneness-Home Peace Run, a global relay seeking to inspire the creation of a more peaceful world. And it will again support as two of its official sports-development charities Endurocad, an academy for the development of high-performance endurance athletes chosen primarily from disadvantaged backgrounds, and the Western Province Kids Athletics Development Programme.
The Marathon, which attracted in excess of 23 000 athletes from over 82 countries last year, has won an array of social and environmental awards. In 2017 it was one of the first marathons in the world to win the coveted AIMS Green Award; and in 2018 it won a bronze award at the South African Eco-Logic Awards and was voted as the 2018 Event of the Year by Runners World (RSA).
Race organisers at the Midnight Sun Marathon (NOR) were delighted to receive a visit from the Marathon Flame at their 30th anniversary race.
The anniversary was honored by the visit of the Marathon Flame from Athens and the city of Marathon. The delegation from Greece represented by Vice President of SEGAS Mr. Ioannis Lioumpas, Board Member SEGAS, Mrs Paraskevi Pachatouridou and Member of Athens Marathon O.C, Representative of Marathon Mr. Spyros Zagaris. Spyros is a former mayor of the city of Marathon.
The Marathon Flame was for the first time transferred electronically from Athens to Tromsø in Norway. It was the first time the Flame had been to the Arctic and in Scandinavia.
The flame was lit by electronic signal sent from Athens on Friday 21nd June, the day before the marathon. The signal lit a fuse in Tromsø which transferred the flame to the fire. Mr. Spyros then caught the flame from the fire with the Marathon Flame Torch. The torch was solemnly handed over to the mayor of the Arctic city of Tromsø. The mayor thanked the flame and handed it to the race Derecor Nils I. Haetta. Haetta then started the MF relay, which had 20 stages.
The Marathon Flame is a symbol of human will and seek to promote the ideals of the Marathon race all over the world; to serve the principles of sports and promote the participation in running as a way of living. The arrival of the flame starts a Marathon Flame Relay of 20 stages, finishing with the lighting of the Marathon Flame Cauldron. Carrying the torch in the relay is a symbol of honor.
The torch was ran by sports youth and former athletes, including Håvard Klemetsen who has two Olympic Golds combined. In total, the distance that the torch relay was over 8km. Nice view around the famous Arctic Cathedral with the majestic snow covered Tromsdalstinden in background. The torch was followed by over 50 different national flags representing the fifty nations with the most participants in the Midnight Sun Marathon.
There was no midnight sun that lit up for all the participants as the weather was wet and rain, but there was no obstacle to creating a party for many hours on Saturday afternoon, evening and night.
The times achieved show that there were still nice running conditions even though the rain was pouring down through much of the race. In spite of the bad weather there were crowds who cheered the runners through the course.
The Dhiraagu Maldives Road Race (MDV) will take place on Fri 20 September 2019, not Fri 13 September 2019 as previously published.
The Copenhagen Half Marathon has announced that three-time world half marathon champion Geoffrey Kamworor will compete in their event on September 15.
“Over these past few years, Kamworor has become the biggest name in the world of running, if we leave the marathon distance out of account. His achievements speak for themselves. The only thing missing on his resume now is probably a world record. Therefore we are very excited that he has announced that he will be coming to Copenhagen to achieve a fast time,” says Henrik Paulsen, director of Sports at the organizing athletics club, Sparta.
Kamworor’s hat trick began in Copenhagen in 2014, where he surprisingly won the 2014 IAAF world half marathon championships. He won again two years later in Cardiff and for a third time in Valencia in 2018.
On September 15, he is back in the Danish capital for the 5th edition of the Copenhagen Half Marathon with a clear mission: to run fast.
“Apart from the CPH Half, Kamworor will also be lining up for this year’s New York Marathon. These two competitions are top priorities to him, so we should expect to see Kamworor in super shape and with the capacity to run really fast. This was evident at the world half marathon championships in Valencia last fall, where he ran the last five kilometres in 12:58 minutes, which is just insanely fast. In comparison, the Danish record over 5,000 metres is 13.25,39.”
For the organizers of the CPH Half, getting Kamworor to Copenhagen is a dream come true: “This is what we have been working for ever since we started this. To see it succeed, is just fantastic.”
The Reggae Marathon, Half Marathon and 10K has joined four other Caribbean marathons to form the Five Island Challenge, sponsored by the Atlanta Life Insurance Company of USA.
The other marathons are: Marathon Bahamas Race Weekend; Run Barbados Marathon Weekend; Bermuda International Race Weekend and Cayman Islands Marathon & Half Marathon Relay.
The organisers of the Five Island Challenge said the new challenge is to encourage distance runners from across the world to thread their way through the palm trees and beaches of the various islands, while enjoying a fun ‘runcation’.
“We at Reggae Marathon are excited to be a part of this challenge as it is bringing a welcome synergy to regional road racing events and competitiveness,” said Alfred ‘Frano’ Francis, Race Director of the Reggae Marathon.
The organisers, the CES Corporation, said the December 2019 and January 2020 dates of the events will allow runners who live in cold-winter spots to escape to the sun.
To successfully complete the challenge, runners must finish each of the five marathons and/or half-marathons within a six-year period, starting with the December 2019 races, of which Reggae Marathon, Half Marathon and 10k is one. It will take multiple years for runners to complete the circuit as some of the marathon events will be held on overlapping dates.
Anyone who has previously completed any of the five races will be given credit for same. Once the series is completed, runners will receive a special finisher’s medal.
The 2019 Reggae Marathon, Half Marathon & 10K is set for December 8, 2019 and continues to attract runners and walkers from across Jamaica and over 38 different countries. The internationally certified event is in its 19th year and continues to grow. The Barbados and Cayman marathons are also held on the same weekend as the Reggae Marathon, while the Bermuda Marathon is scheduled for January 17–19, 2020 and the Bahamas Marathon on January 19, 2020.
Košice Marathon organisers are honoured that Ingrid Kristiansen, one of the best distance runners in history, will visit Košice in October as a special guest of the Košice Peace Marathon.
She was the first woman to become world champion – on the track, road and cross-country. She broke many world records and took many victories at great marathons around the world.
She set a world record for 5000m in London in 1985 to become the first woman to run under 15 minutes. That same year her winning time in the London Marathon, 2:21:06, stood as a world record for 13 years. She won the London Marathon four times, the Boston Marathon twice as well as the New York and Chicago marathons. Her greatest success on the track was becoming world champion at 10,000m in Rome in 1987.
She attends the Kosice Marathon, founded in 1924 and second only to the Boston Marathon in longevity, as part of the “In the Footsteps of Marathon Legends” project.
The 1/2 Maraton de Bucaramanga – FCV (COL) will take place on Sun 6 October 2019, not Sun 20 October 2019 as previously published.
There is a looming possibility that Sunday’s ASICS Half Marathon on the Gold Coast will herald a unique podium repeat.
Last year’s men’s and women’s winners in this event, young Melbourne sensation Jack Rayner and USA’s Sara Hall, are returning to defend their crowns. If they can again take the honours, it will be the first time in the 37-year history of the race that the same male and female have saluted consecutively.
Consecutive male and female winners have occurred once over the full 42km distance at the Gold Coast Marathon. Pat Carroll and Margaret Reddan won back-to-back in 1984–85.
Now it remains to be seen whether Hall and Rayner can make this breakthrough in the half marathon.
Rayner, 23, has continued to collect podiums and accolades across the globe since his stunning performance on the Gold Coast last year and Hall already has significant ‘local form’ and a high-bar target Down Under.
Last month, after she took out the USA Women’s 10K Championships in New York, her attention turned to Sunday’s ASICS Half Marathon and a goal of sub 1:09. If successful, not only will it mean a personal best but a race record, the Australian All Comers Record and a third straight victory on the Gold Coast.
Rayner’s last 18 months have been a classic tears to triumph story, with significant chapters written on the Gold Coast.
2018 started disastrously when he bombed out of both his Commonwealth Games selection races (the 5000m and the steeple).
No sooner had the games ended, however, and Rayner was back on the Gold Coast clocking a then-personal best of 1:03:12 to win the ASICS Half Marathon.
A month later he added the Sunshine Coast Half Marathon to his growing list of scalps, before that season’s ultimate prize, winning the inaugural Commonwealth Half Marathon Championships held in Cardiff in a sizzling 1:01:01 in October.
That Cardiff time also rang some local alarm bells. The ASICS Half Marathon record is 1:01:16 and was set back in 1992 by Kenyan Benson Masya, who also won the World Half Marathon Championships in that same year.
This year Rayner clocked a 1:01:36 half marathon, placing third in Marugame, Japan, before an impressive 2:11:06 in his marathon debut in London. That time was under the Tokyo 2020 Olympic qualifying mark of 2:11:30.
In the women’s field Hall, 36, will have to contend with plenty of Australian pressure to achieve her hat-trick. Alongside her will be someone who has already collected three half marathon crowns on the Gold Coast.
Lisa Weightman won this event in 2007, 2009 and 2010. Her last victory also set the current race record and Australian women’s half marathon all comers record – 1:09:00. This year, Weightman has been in near career-best form, winning the Noosa Half Marathon in 1:10:04 and has her Gold Coast race record squarely in her sights.
Fellow Australian, Sinead Diver has placed three times on the Gold Coast – second last year (1:09:53), second in 2014 and third in 2016. In February this year she recorded a personal best of 1:08:55 in Marugame which means she heads into the race with the fastest half marathon PB in the field.
Diver’s recent form in the marathon has been even more impressive, clocking a 2:24:11 in April’s London Marathon to not only etch herself as the third fastest Australian female over that distance, but also bettering the Tokyo 2020 Olympic qualifying time of 2:29:30.
Other strong Australian contenders include Ellie Pashley (PB 1:09:20), who has also recorded an Olympic marathon qualifier, 2:26:21 in Japan in March, and Virginia McCormick, who ran 1:12:25 to place second in the 2016 ASICS Half Marathon and then ran 2:29:14 in the 2017 Gold Coast Marathon which is the second fastest ever in that race by an Aussie woman.
The 41st edition Gold Coast Marathon will be held on 6–7 July 2019. It will feature eight events including the Gold Coast Marathon, Wheelchair Marathon, ASICS Half Marathon, Wheelchair 15km, Southern Cross University 10km Run, Gold Coast Airport Fun Run, Garmin 4km Junior Dash and Garmin 2km Junior Dash.
The temperature on Hamburg’s famous Reeperbahn at 10am was 28ºC and rising. City senator Andy Grote fired the starting gun and 8,402 runners set off in blazing sunshine.
8,056 of them made it to the finishing line at Hamburg congress centre. “It is sensational that 96% of the runners who started the race finished it in this heat,” said a delighted Karsten Schölermann, the organiser of the hella hamburg halfmarathon.
“We have been preparing for this battle against the heat for over a week and increased the number of water stations from seven to twelve. We sent out extra heat advice to all runners by email and set up extra showers and wet sections.”
“Due to the weather we had roughly twice as many incidents as usual,” says Sebastian Müller, operations leader of the voluntary medical team run by ASB. “Most were circulation complaints and 80% could be dealt with on the spot. A few people had to go to hospital but there were no serious problems there either and most could go home soon after observation.”
As expected the water stations were unter severe pressure. At the first two stations many runners took the opportunity to pour several cups of water over themselves, which made it difficult to supply enough water for all 8,400 runners. “But we did it!” says water manager Christopher Connor proudly. “We managed to keep the supply up, with the exception of the last ten minutes at the 5km and 7km stations.”
Course records were hardly to be expected in view of the high temperatures. It should be recorded though that the race was won by the favourites, Olympic champion Stephen Kiprotich and Melat Kejeta. Benjamin Franke and Michaela Sarman-Lein were the fastest male and female Hamburg runners.
The organizers of the Borobudur Marathon – the Central Java Provincial Government, Indonesia’s leading newspaper Kompas daily, and the Central Java-based Bank Jateng – are offering a new experience for tourists and runners to explore the Magelang city differently.
Central Java Governor Ganjar Pranowo said that they aspire to establish Borobudur Marathon as the best marathon in Indonesia.
This year the regional financial institution Bank Jateng offers credit to the homestay businesses in Magelang and the surrounding cities, to help them improve their services.
Now in its second year, Borobudur Marathon has become a strong attraction for the tourism industry. “Borobudur Marathon is listed on the Tourism Ministry’s list of 10 important events this year, which is an achievement – for this is not only a sporting event, but it also strives to make an impact on the economy and Magelang society,” said Ninuk Mardiana Pambudi, Kompas editor-in-chief, during the event’s press conference.
This year, the marathon starts inside the Lumbini Park Complex, in Borobudur Temple, Magelang, Central Java. Applicants who have not succeeded in the ballot system can still register via a travel agent appointed by Borobudur Marathon.
The HAJ Hannover Marathon (GER) will take place on Sun 26 April 2020, not Sun 19 April 2020 as previously published.
The Maraton Cartago (CRC) will take place on Sun 5 April 2020, not Sun 19 April 2020 as previously published.
A top-class duel is in prospect in the BMW Berlin Marathon when Germany’s biggest marathon takes place on September 29. Gladys Cherono, both title and course record holder, will face Vivian Cheruiyot.
The two Kenyans are among an elite group of world-class women runners who have improved their personal bests to below 2:19 in the past year, winning high quality races in the Abbott World Marathon Majors (AWMM) series. But they will both have to beware of a dangerous Ethiopian, Mare Dibaba, who has twice run under 2:20 and took the bronze medal in the 2016 Olympic Marathon in Rio.
“We are naturally delighted that we’ll be having the defending champion Gladys Cherono on the start line,” said Race Director Mark Milde and added: “Compared to the men, the women in Berlin have some ground to make up. With three very strong contenders in the line-up, the women’s race on September 29 could be centre stage.” In the past twelve years the men’s race at the BMW Berlin Marathon has produced a string of world class times with six world records into the bargain. The presence of Gladys Cherono and Vivian Cheruiyot suggests that these two Kenyans could headline a show-stealing performance from the elite women in general.
After victories in 2015 and 2017 Gladys Cherono achieved her third triumph in the BMW Berlin Marathon last year. The 36-year-old, who won the World Half Marathon title in 2014, also broke the course record of the Japanese Mizuki Noguchi of 2:19:12 which had stood for 13 years. Cherono’s time of 2:18:11 was a big improvement on her lifetime best and helped her join the exclusive company of women champions in Berlin with three wins apiece: Renata Kokowska of Poland, the home town favourite Uta Pippig and Ethiopia’s Aberu Kebede. “My goal is now to win for the fourth time in Berlin,” announced Gladys Cherono soon after she had completed the hat-trick last year. Her return is a clear bid to go for the unique honour of a fourth title.
Gladys Cherono may well have to run another personal best to win title number four. Among her rivals will be her compatriot Vivian Cheruiyot who will be making her debut in the BMW Berlin Marathon. The 35-year-old Olympic 5,000m champion in 2016 won last year’s London Marathon, improving her best to 2:18:31. This year in London she finished runner-up, beating Gladys Cherono on both occasions. Both Kenyans are in the women’s top ten of all-time fastest marathon runners with Cherono at number six and Cheruiyot at number eight, setting up what should be a fascinating clash.
Another who will be making her BMW Berlin Marathon debut will be Mare Dibaba. The 29-year-old Ethiopian actually has more marathon experience than either Gladys Cherono or Vivian Cheruiyot. She won the world title in Beijing in 2015 and one year later took the bronze medal at the Rio Olympics. She has a best of 2:19:52, achieving that time twice, in 2012 and 2015. Given Berlin’s renowned fast course, Dibaba will be aiming to run another very fast time and challenge the Kenyan duo.
After the success of last year’s pilot event, the ASB Auckland Marathon will include a wheelchair race permanently on the race schedule.
Race Director Adam McDonald said the decision
comes off the back of that hugely successful pilot event, and the contributions of a number of agencies and stakeholders.
“We simply would not be at this point without the
work of Achilles New Zealand and the Halberg Disability Foundation. Both were instrumental in getting the pilot off the ground and have since provided great support and considerable expertise to enable us to announce today’s exciting news.
“We went through a thorough debrief of last year’s event and with the support of ATEED, NZTA, Auckland Transport and ASB, we are confident we have the infrastructure and knowledge in place to commit to the wheelchair category at the ASB
The announcement featured the presentation of a custom built race chair by ASB to budding para-athlete Laura Stuart.
“The ASB Auckland Marathon is all about progress – seeing people set their personal goals and then work hard to achieve them. The inclusion of a wheelchair category last year really opened up the event to allow more people to ‘run it their way’, and we’re excited this is going to be a permanent addition.
A Wellington-based lawyer, Stuart was involved in a mountain biking accident two and a half years ago that left her paralysed from the chest down.
The sporty 31-year-old hasn’t let this stop her however, borrowing a racing wheelchair from a friend and competing in the New York marathon just a year and a half after the accident. The new purpose-built race chair will make the world of difference to her future aspirations.
“Borrowing a race wheelchair to do the New York Marathon was a bit like borrowing the wrong sized running shoes. Having a chair built to fit hopefully will be like getting the right size shoes. I imagine it will give me the freedom to get out and go for a roll without noticing the chair,” said Stuart.
Laura also knows that the permanent addition of a wheelchair race at the ASB Auckland Marathon will reach far and wide, and impact many lives.
“It’s fantastic and sets a great precedent. I hope that more events realise that it’s actually not hard to be inclusive and follow suit. It will hopefully increase the exposure of wheelchair racing and encourage more people with disabilities to get out and be active.”
Achilles New Zealand are great champions of athletes with a disability, and were delighted at today’s announcement.
“Achilles New Zealand, after such a successful pilot programme last year, is excited to be working with IRONMAN and ASB to further develop the ‘Wheelies’ category for the 2019 ASB Auckland Marathon.
“This now opens a new opportunity not only for our New Zealand athletes but also International athletes who have already expressed interest to participate after hearing how successful 2018 was. We really appreciate the supporting organisations that have made this happen.”
McDonald echoed those sentiments, suggesting the sky is the limit for the ASB Marathon Wheelchair category.
“This is a hugely exciting day for us and for our event. We are delighted that the punt taken with the pilot event and the many hours of work from a number of different stakeholders has paid off. We can now set about planning a stunning event on October 20 this year, one that will have a world class wheelchair race as one of the day’s many highlights, as participants take it to the streets of Auckland to truly ‘run it your way’.”
The Tarblazer 42.2 (IND) will take place on Sun 6 October 2019, not Sun 23 June 2019 as previously published.
Running with a purpose was the motivation for Carlos Quintero, his sister Alejandra, Julián Otálvaro and Víctor Arango to set up the sports movement “Steps of Happiness” five years ago. Today there are more than a hundred athletes from all over Colombia who are committed to the cause and will be running in the 2019 Medellín Marathon.
“I run – you give” is the slogan under which runners in the Medellín Marathon raise money, which finances a children’s Christmas party and a celebration of Children’s Day. Donors are asked to contribute 1000 pesos (0.27 EUR) per kilometre run.
“In 2014 we set up a working group to promote the sport and to contribute to the most needy and vulnerable in our community,” says Julián Otálvaro. “Since then we have run hundreds of kilometres for this, which is why we say we run not only with our legs but also with our hearts.”
The committee’s goal this year is to raise 50 million COP (13,000 EUR) and they are optimistic that they will reach it, because people have seen the results and are committed.
Phuket’s largest mass participation sports event, the Laguna Phuket Marathon, welcomed a record 12,000-plus runners from 73 countries for its 14th edition.
The largest nationalities represented at this year’s Laguna Phuket Marathon were Thai, Japanese, Chinese and British. There was also a large contingent of runners from the Philippines and who made their presence known with Richard Salano and Prince Joey Lee finishing first and second in the Men’s Half Marathon, and Christine Hallasgo (PHI) and Christabel Martes (PHI) placing first and third in the Women’s Half Marathon.
Japanese runners dominated the 10.5km distance with Hiroki Nakajima and Hisashi Kitamura claiming first and second in the Men’s division ahead of Supit Chantharat (THA) in third. In the Women’s race, Phuket-based Dimity-Lee Duke (AUS) won in a time of 00:41:30, 23 seconds ahead of Tomomi Nakajima (JPN), who out-raced compatriot Sawa Aoki.
The Japanese super couple of Hiroki Nakajima and Tomomi Nakajima won their respective Marathon distances at the 2017 Laguna Phuket Marathon and returning this year ran 10.5km on the first day, and Marathon the day after. While Hiroki was out sprinted to finish fourth overall in the Men’s division, Tomomi went on to win the Women’s distance for the second time ahead of Amy Mumford (GBR) and April Rose Diaz (PHI).
The Men’s Marathon was won by another Japanese runner, Takashi Mino, in 2:35:02.
A notable performance from Australian Hayley Newman saw her win the 5km Women’s race for the third consecutive time.
Famed for its beautiful course around Laguna Phuket and the island’s northern beaches, organisers strived to reduce single-use plastics on the course this year.
The Kyoto Marathon (JPN) will take place on Sun 16 February 2020, not Mon 16 March 2020 as previously published.
Dale Grieg, a Scottish long-distance runner who became the first official holder of the world best time for the women’s marathon, died on 12 May 2019, aged 81 in a hospice in Paisley, Scotland.
On 23 May 1964 she ran 3:27:45 on a hilly course in the Isle of Wight Marathon (GBR), a time recognised by the IAAF as the inaugural world best – 20 years before the first Women’s Olympic Marathon was held.
Her mark – which she later said had been mis-reported and was in fact 20 seconds faster – was surpassed by New Zealander Mildred Sampson three months later (3:19:33) although the validity of this time is disputed as it was recorded in a time trial.
Greig trained in thin-soled gym shoes and was regarded as an object of curiosity and ridicule when she trained on the streets. She was excluded from races open only to men. For those she could enter she paid the entry fee and all her own expenses while even the biggest races only offered sundry household items as prizes.
Unaware that Greig trained over distances of up to 30 miles and had represented Scotland at cross country for 13 years the Isle of Wight organisers got an ambulance to trail her during the race. She set off five minutes early – a precaution taken to avoid her being considered as in the same race as the 67 men also competing. Most overtook her but 19 of them dropped out in the 25C heat and she overtook many of them in the closing stages. Athletics’ officialdom was not impressed, chiding the organisers for something that was ‘not in the best interests of the sport’.
Undeterred, Grieg herself went on to achieve new firsts: first woman to complete the hilly Isle of Man 40-mile TT course and first woman to finish the 54-mile London to Brighton race. She won the inaugural world masters’ marathon held in Paris in 1974 – the first championship in which mixed-gender races were held. It was a foretaste of the mass-participation movement that took off over the next five years and which shaped the future of distance running.
The Shriram Properties Bengaluru Marathon in India has successfully slashed its use of single-use plastics.
A report by waste management consultants Saahas certified last year’s event on 21 October as “zero waste”, meaning that of the 3000kg of waste produced, a mere 8kg had to go to landfill.
Measures taken at the race to improve sustainability included serving food and drinks in reusable plates and glasses rather than using disposable packaging. Packaging was also reduced by using a buffet of fresh hot food instead of pre-prepared meals.
Race organisers NEB Sports partnered with Saahas to help effectively manage the waste stream. Saahas staff were deployed on site on the day to ensure segregation of waste at source, avoiding cross-contamination. Dry waste was transported to Saahas’ recycling facility while compostable waste (mostly leftover food) went for biogas generation.
AIMS has announced the founding members of the AIMS Sustainability Commission, the next step of the organisation’s engagement in promoting good environmental practices among its member races.
The members of the Sustainability Commission are being announced today, Wednesday 5 June, to coincide with World Environment Day and Global Running Day.
This year, the United Nations Environment Program has chosen the theme #BeatAirPollution to celebrate World Environment Day. For the running movement, clean air and a healthy environment are essential, not only for the development of our sport but also to safeguard a better quality of life worldwide.
By endorsing sustainable and environmental practices, AIMS member races are contributing to this global campaign to become an ethical link for a better planet.
AIMS has for many years been a pioneer in promoting good environmental practices among its member races. In 2013, the first AIMS Green Award was presented as part of the AIMS Best Marathon Runner Awards Gala in Athens, the home of the marathon.
During the 9th Symposium in Athens in 2015, AIMS made a strong commitment to tackling climate change and was the only international sports organisation that sent a declaration signed by its President to the historic COP21 (2015 United Nations Climate Change Conference), held in Paris, in December 2015.
The founding members of the AIMS Sustainability Commission bring passion, knowledge and experience of working to promote sustainable running events. All six recipients of the AIMS Green Award have a representative on the Commission.
The Commission is led by International Sustainability Expert George Kazantzopoulos.
The founding members of the ‘AIMS Sustainability Commission’ are:
The AIMS Sustainability Commission’s scope will be:
The Barossa Marathon Festival (AUS) will take place on Sun 11 August 2019, not Mon 19 August 2019 as previously published.
A bit greener every year: The Mainova Frankfurt Marathon is trying to continually reduce its environmental impact. “We are on the way to being a ‘green marathon’ and getting closer to our goal every year,” says race director Jo Schindler.
On UN World Environment Day (June 5) the results of the race’s efforts are respectable. Since 2005 the organisers have taken many steps to make Frankfurt’s biggest annual sporting event more sustainable. And runners and sponsors appreciate it.
Over the last 14 years the Mainova Frankfurt Marathon has invested over 230,000 euro in environmental protection measures. These are in areas ranging from catering, rubbish management and merchandising to energy and water.
For example, the 38th edition of the biggest German city marathon on 27 October will use no plastic cups at all. Last year these were still used for hot drinks (tea) at the refreshment stops. Even then, in co-operation with drinks partner Rosbacher, three-quarters of the 450,000 cups used for runners had already been replaced with FSC- and ISO-certified paper. Now this will be raised to 100 per cent – in the framework of an improvement waste management concept developed with the city’s waste disposal utilities and the “Clean Frankfurt” unit. The concept will be improved further using in-depth analysis of the rubbish produced at the refreshment stops.
This year’s edition of the classic race beside the river Main will also finance – donating one euro per participant in the 42K race – the planting of olive trees in the Tuscan homeland of race partner Fattoria La Vialla. This company’s organic foods are fed to runners at the Fattoria La Vialla Toscana Pasta Party. This project starting in 2017 has raised 12,000 euro and planted 4500 olive trees, which absorb around 240 tonnes of CO2 annually. The goal is to plant a further 4500 trees in the coming year.
Along the course and at the finish, another race partner, Querbeet organic produce, will distribute 5.5 tonnes of organic bananas and 1.2 tonnes of organic apples to runners. With organic fruit the CO2 footprint can be five times less than conventionally farmed produce. The organic catering has been praised as best practice by the German Olympic Federation.
Together with title sponsor Mainova the Frankfurt Marathon is counting on the power of the sun. The organisers have recently financed an installation of solar panels covering around 150 square metres on the roof of the Mainova office in Frankfurt. It will produce around 22,500 kilowatt-hours per year of environmentally friendly electricity, saving around twelve tonnes of CO2. The marathon organisers’ aim is to produce sufficient carbon neutral energy to match the amount used at their event.
“Sustainability is a central plank of the Mainova Frankfurt Marathon,” say race director Jo Schindler. “There’s no greener way to get about than running. And we put on a running festival every year that’s as friendly to the environment and climate as it can possibly be.”
The Frankfurt Marathon plans to share its green expertise with other race organisers in future. Course manager Manuel Friedrich has joined the newly created Sustainability Commission of the Association of International Marathons and Distance Races (AIMS).
The Mainova Frankfurt Marathon will take place on 27 October 2019.
The Marine Corps Marathon (USA) is offering runners a special 15% discount on its entire MCM Event Series to mark Global Running Day on June 5th.
Events from June to December are eligible for the discount, but it can only be claimed by registering with the discount code MCMGlobal2019 before midnight Eastern Time (GMT – 4).
All MCM Event Series take place aboard Marine Corps Base Quantico. The race organisers expect to welcome runners from every US state and over 50 other countries.
Global Running Day is supported by the Association of International Marathons and Distance Races (AIMS), where the MCMO is a member organisation. Its objective is to encourage people to ‘make the pledge’ to run on Global Running Day.
Organisers of the Manulife Danang International Marathon have a new aim – to make their race “the most unmissable marathon in the world”.
Run since 2014 and now with nearly 30,000 participants, the marathon has changed the way Southeast Asia views, organises and participates in sporting events.
For this year’s race in August, the event is trying to encourage the local people of Danang to take more of an active role in the event in order to build a strong relationship between those who live in Danang and the marathon itself.
There is no better way to experience the city than running the marathon, say organisers – the town boasts little pollution and was given the title of one of the cleanest cities globally. Forbes Magazine wrote that Danang’s My Khe beach was one of the most attractive beaches on the planet. Apart from its 30km of beaches, Danang is also known as the “city of bridges” given its impressive collection including the longest suspension bridge in Vietnam, and the Dragon Bridge which has been called one of the most beautiful bridges in the world.
Race organisers Pulse Active issued a call for local volunteers who would like to show visitors around the city. “If running isn’t your thing then you can show your love for Danang by volunteering,” it said.
Cape Town’s beautiful springtime marathon, which for the last three years has retained IAAF Gold Label status, is this year aiming to raise in excess of three million South African rand (185,000 EUR) for the 50+ charities associated with it.
This is a 50% increase in charitable earnings from last year’s event, which was awarded Participation Event of the Year at the annual Sports Industry Awards.
“It’s extraordinary what city marathons can do for their local communities,” says race director Janet Welham. The biggest marathons in the world can raise sums in the tens of millions.
Commenting on the ease involved with rallying public support for a chosen charity, Welham says: “Social media is the tool to use to generate awareness around your favourite cause or charity, and the steps involved with linking yourself up to our fundraising platform, GivenGain, which in turn pays the charity once you’ve run the race, are very simple.”
Marius Maré, CEO of GivenGain explains: “Setting up your fundraising page takes less than a minute, the most important part is to tell why you’re raising funds for the charity you’ve chosen. The average participant on the GivenGain platform raises about ZAR 7,500 (465 EUR) from about 15–20 donations in his or her network of family and friends. It might not sound significant at first but imagine 20,000 participants all raising funds!”
Maré believes the event organisers have to ensure that fundraising is a part of an event’s DNA, much like the Sanlam Cape Town Marathon’s Run4Change legacy programme.
And the charities themselves have an equally important role to play, he says. “Use your influencers, ambassadors, donors and anyone you know who participates in active events, and send them to the event’s fundraising page,” he advises.
Mariska Oosthuizen, head of brand at race sponsor Sanlam says, “We are pleased about the positive social impact the race continues to make on Cape Town and the broader South African public. Giving back has always been an important aspect of the event. This year we continue to do so and will introduce a new and dynamic campaign to support CANSA, the organisation Sanlam has partnered for more than 27 years to help raise millions of rand for the battle against cancer.”
This year’s marathon, which takes place on Sunday 15 September, looks set to attract in excess of 26,000 runners, from South Africa and internationally.
Community support for the marathon grows year on year, with last year’s event featuring 17 water stations manned by over 600 volunteers, 20 bands and DJs performing at the stations, and over 20 charities and 10 athletic clubs involved with the stations.
The Antarctica Marathon & Half (ATA) will take place on Sun 22 March 2020, not Wed 18 March 2020 as previously published.
The BBC News website reports that more and more women are taking up running in Saudi Arabia.
As part of a liberalisation programme introduced by the highly conservative traditionalist regime in the last few years the former ban on girls taking part in sport in government schools has been dropped.
Saudi Arabia first sent female athletes to the London Olympic Games in 2012. In 2013 the Jeddah Running Community was set up and held training sessions for both women and men (also offering women-only sessions).
It is reported that in the current liberalisation – in which women have now been granted the right to drive, for example – such running groups have been established in other cities.
The Phukethon (THA) will be Fri 8 November 2019—Sun 10 November 2019, not Sat 9 November 2019—Mon 11 November 2019 as previously published.
For the last four years New York Road Runners (NYRR) has promoted ‘Global Running Day’ which this year falls on 5 June.
The objective is simple: to support and engage runners and running organisations in encouraging people to ‘make the pledge’ to run on Global Running Day. AIMS fully supports this initiative and urges members to consider organising events of their own in support of Global Running Day. NYRR have conducted outreach and developed materials for other organisers to use to celebrate Global Running Day in any way they wish. To see what is available consult the website www.globalrunningday.org
The site has been updated to allow teams to create their own “team page” and pledging goals. This is just one of the tools being used to facilitate the participation of organisations large and small. NYRR and AIMS support any and all organisations and activations planning celebrations on Global Running Day.
The ‘Sustainability Commission’ is the next step in AIMS’ promotion of good environmental practice amongst its member races. The Sustainability Commission has been in development since the AIMS World Congress held in Tallinn, Estonia in September 2018 and follows other pioneering initiatives linking sport with the environment.
In 2013 AIMS created a detailed guide on ‘how to run an environment-friendly marathon’ which complemented the first edition of the ‘Green Award’, presented as part of the AIMS ‘Best Marathon Runner’ Awards Gala in Athens, to acknowledge environmental excellence and best environmental practices of its member races.
Since then the Green Award has attracted the interest of more than 100 AIMS member races all around the world. To date six AIMS Members have received the AIMS Green Award and the submissions are always increasing.
The Commission’s scope will be:
The Commission will be led by Mr George Kazantzopoulos, international sustainability expert, founder of the NGO ‘Institute Team for the World’, a scientific partner of AIMS on sustainability and member for more than 15 years of the International Olympic Committee, Sport and Environment Commission.
AIMS President Paco Borao commented: “AIMS is making a significant step forward to promote environmental protection and sustainability among its member races and will continue to be at the forefront of the international dialogue regarding sustainability in sport.”
Mr George Kazantzopoulos commented: “The effort that started in 2013 with the introduction of the ‘AIMS Green Award’ and the Environmental Guidelines has gained momentum with the international running movement. The creation of the AIMS Sustainability Commission is a logical evolution of society’s need for a better environment and a sustainable future.”
Adam Tango Holland is a man who loves to race.
Born in 1987, the Devonian is currently one of Britain’s most prolific endurance runners. He holds the record for running the fastest set of 10 Marathons in 10 days (averaging 2:45 – comparing well with his marathon best time of 2:24).
Back in March Adam won this year’s Logicom Cyprus Marathon for the second consecutive year. On Sunday 15 March 2020 he will be going for his third consecutive victory in the classic Marathon of Cyprus. He would be the first person ever to win the event three years in a row.
Adam shares his running adventures on YouTube and can be followed at: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCKRr15miRPLWCfdt4lHubgA
Victor Kipchirchir of Kenya in 2:17:03 and Ethiopian Gadise Gudisa Negese in 2:46:37 are the winners of the 16th Salzburg Marathon which was held in sunny and warm conditions on Sunday 19th May.
Organisers were pleased with a new participation record of 8,501 registered runners from 80 countries in eight different races over the weekend, 1,014 of them in the marathon race, 2,537 in the Sparkasse half marathon race.
Kipchirchir lived up to expectations and claimed a clear victory at the running festival in Mozart’s hometown. Temperatures from 19 to 22°C on a day of full sunshine made it an almost impossible task to achieve top times. Kipchirchir set the fastest time at the event since 2013 despite missing the course record of 2:14:16 by a considerable margin. “This was a hard race today. It is a great event to run but the temperatures made it really tough. I felt okay and could have run 2:10 here but not in these conditions,” Kipchirchir said.
“We experienced a festival of joy today. Salzburg welcomed the runners and the marathon in an extraordinary way. We had hoped for a better result for the winner, but the positive atmosphere and the motivation for everyone involved or watching is the overwhelming message of the marathon event,” says race director Johannes Langer.
A row of records were all smashed at Sunday’s Telenor Copenhagen Marathon. Not only did Jackson Kibet Limo break the course record in the Danish capital with a winning time of 2:09,54 hours; the 31-year-old Kenyan also produced the fastest time ever on Danish soil, lowering the previous best set in Odense back in 2012 by nearly two minutes.
With his time of 2:09:06 from Paris in 2014, Limo did have the best PB of all. At 30K, however, all seemed to be set for a duel between the debutant Victor Kiplimo (KEN) and Ethiopia’s Gebre Roba Yadete. The two runners broke free from the leading pack after 29K, but a few kilometres later Yadete could no longer keep up with the pace. Then at 37K Limo emerged out of nowhere and took the lead, building up a gap of 70 seconds for the last five kilometres.
“My goal was to break the course record. I ran my own race, but at 25K I started to feel a minor hamstring. Luckily it disappeared after 32K,” said Limo who despite victories at marathons in Osaka in 2013 and Porto in 2017 regarded today’s win at his most important of his carrier.
In the women’s race, Ethiopia took the first three spots. The winner, Etalemahu Habtewold, covered the classic 42,195 km in a personal best of 2:29,29, thereby improving the course record from 2010, which also stood as an all-comer’s record.
Two Danish male pacers led a group of four women through the first half in 1:13,33. With 10 kilometres to go, Habtewold was alone in the lead. Her compatriot Dinknesh Mekash caught up again with only five kilometres to go, but in the end had to settle for second place 53 seconds behind Habtewold.
With 13,280 participants, the 40th anniversary edition of the race could register another record: as the biggest marathon race in Denmark ever.
|5||Ruth||VAN DER MEIJDEN||NED||2:35:42|
TripAdvisor users have no doubt about it. For the third year in a row they have chosen La Concha Beach in San Sebastian, Spain as the best European Beach and the fourth best beach worldwide.
So if you like running, congratulations, it’s time to celebrate the fact that you can now run along this beach – if you register for the Zurich San Sebastian Marathon on 24th November.
You can choose among 3 different distances – marathon, half marathon or 10k – and any of those races go along this beach that everybody falls in love with. You will also feel the unconditional support of the spectators as they gather along the route in order to cheer all the participants of this marathon, which will be celebrating its 42nd edition this year.
Moreover, from La Concha beach you will also be able to see one of the most beautiful places in San Sebastian, its bay and Santa Clara island. Running in San Sebastian is much more than just running. It is a town to visit and discover, to enjoy yourself in a flat route where runners often get their PB. In fact, Spain’s current women’s marathon record was achieved in this marathon held in San Sebastian, situated in the north of Spain and very close to France. The town also hosted the Marathon World Cup back in 1993, where the best marathon runners could already run along the current best European beach.
San Sebastian already knew it had a great flat route – but now it’s time runners knew they can run along the “best European beach” and fourth worldwide.
The Marathon International de Fes (MAR) will take place on Sun 12 January 2020, not Sun 5 January 2020 as previously published.
If you’ve ever been to the legendary Oktoberfest in Munich, you’ll have seen the oversized gingerbread hearts on sale. Millions of people buy them every year to present them to their sweethearts.
So the organizers of the half marathon in the famous pilgrimage site of Altötting had the idea to design their race medal in the shape of a gingerbread heart. Especially as the town of Altötting calls itself ‘heart of Bavaria’.
In addition a USB memory stick is incorporated in the medal which makes it a really extraordinary and special memento. Moreover each participant gets a waist belt to store keys, mobile, money etc. during running.
And even the race is extraordinary: it goes through a big forest which attracts many world class athletes; so it’s no wonder that the Halfmarathon Altötting is called the fastest ‘nature’ course of the world (course record: 1:01:39 / 1:08:38).
The race offers free public transport by train within a range of about 100km, free guided city tour, free pasta party, free childcare, free massages etc. In addition, all participants get a goody bag. Bands push the runners though the course, a staffed luggage storage ensures you don’t have to worry about your belongings, and if you arrive by train you can get your start number directly at the railway station!
But there are many more reasons to come to Bavaria and participate in the race. Apart from the many interesting pilgrimage sites of Altötting, the longest castle complex in the world – Burghausen – is just 15km away. The Alps, Salzburg, Munich or the famous Bavarian lake the ‘Chiemsee’ can be reached within an hour. You don’t even need a car as you can go there by train with cheap tickets!
The Zurich Marató de Barcelona (ESP) will take place on Sun 15 March 2020, not Sun 8 March 2020 as previously published.
The eDreams Mitja Marató de Barcelona (ESP) will take place on Sun 16 February 2020, not Sun 9 February 2020 as previously published.
The 10,000th place in the 25th hella hamburg halbmarathon was sold online on Monday 13th May. This means the 25th anniversary race has already beaten last year’s sales – in 2018 it took another week to reach 10,000 sales.
If more than 12,320 registrations have been made by the time the start gun goes off at 10am on 30th June, it will mean 15 years of uninterrupted growth for the race, securing its position as the second biggest stand-alone half marathon in Germany.
“Our success is down to continual development of the half marathon,” says the race director Karsten Schölermann. More than 50 tourist attractions near the half marathon course bring participants from across the globe to Hamburg – with registrations received so far from 72 nations. The number of events along the route has also mushroomed, with nearly 40 DJs, live bands, acrobats, cheering zones, drummers and samba groups turning the route into a runners’ party.
This year’s 25th anniversary will be run as usual under the motto “Hamburg Half – Double Fun”. Online registration closes on 18th June 2019.
Athletes from 25 different countries have already confirmed their participation in the Medellin Marathon 2019, with four months to go before the athletic event, which celebrates its 25th anniversary this year.
In 2019 it expects about 15 thousand runners from more than 40 nations.
“The first edition of the race was conducted in 1995 with a 14-kilometer course, on that occasion there were only two thousand participants from just five countries. The current figures demonstrate our evolution. We believe that evolution has been important, not in vain do we have the endorsement of the International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF) and the Colombian Athletics Federation. We are an active member of the Association of International Marathons and Distance Races (AIMS) and also a qualifying race for the Boston Marathon, one of the five most important marathons in the world,” said race director Gustavo Orozco.
The Medellín Marathon is the most important street sports event in Colombia and a pioneer of distance running in the country. The Medellín Marathon has open registrations online through the page www.maratonmedellin.co, in addition to the sites destined for this purpose in Medellín, Bogotá and Cali.
The Salzburg Marathon is set for a record-breaking event this weekend. Nearly 8,400 runners from 79 countries get ready to compete in the Austrian city.
This marks a new participation record for the race which describes itself as a “Running Festival in Mozart’s hometown”.
Top favourite Victor Kipchirchir from Kenya is a late entry to the race and leads the charge to break the course record. The 31-year-old set his personal best of 2:07:39 when winning the Valencia Marathon in 2016 and also triumphed at marathons in Warszawa and Santiago de Chile. He is the fastest runner that has ever been on the start line in Salzburg. In the half marathon he boasts a world-class personal best of 59:31 minutes back in 2012. It is clearly his target to celebrate his first victory in Austria and to break the Salzburg Marathon course record of 2:14:16, set by Eliud Kiplagat in 2013.
Victor Kipchirchir has everything what it takes to produce a new record performance in Salzburg. An experienced runner with many international races he finished ten marathons and broke 2:10 on four occasions. Besides his fastest time of 2:07:39 in Valencia 2016 he ran 2:08:52 in Seoul 2017, 2:09:13 in Frankfurt 2012 and 2:09:59 in Warszawa 2014. The Kenyan definitely wants to do better than he did at his latest appearence in Austria. Six weeks ago he aimed for a podium place at the Vienna City Marathon and passed halfway in 63:22 as part of the leading group before dropping out after 30km.
While no other runner in Salzburg matches the potential of Victor Kipchirchir, there is more talent assembled on the start line. Kenyan Rogers Melly Kipchirchir with a PB of 2:13:38 and Stephen Katam Kipngetich with a PB of 2:14:08 want to improve their times. Rogers Melly came second in both Lodz and Münster marathons in 2016 with a 2:13 time. Should Victor Kipchirchir get into trouble, Roger Melly might have the chance for his first international victory.
Stephan Katam is the winner of Belgrade marathon 2017 and ran his fastest marathon in Tel Aviv 2016 finishing in third place. Marathon debutants Anthony Karinga Maina and Philip Kirui add more quality to the elite field. They have proven themselves at half marathons. Maina ran 62:36 in high altitude at Nairobi 2016, Kirui clocked 63:11 in 2017.
The women’s race features Ethiopian Gadise Gudisa Negese as the favourite. At 21 she contests her first marathon race as an important new step in her career. Julia Brugger of Germany is another debutant. She aims for a time of about 2:50.
Shorter distances at the Salzburg Marathon weekend are expected to bring some sporting highlights as well. Swiss athlete Marco Kern hopes to improve his personal best of 65:57 minutes in the Sparkasse Half Marathon. Newly crowned Austrian national marathon champion Cornelia Moser (PB 2:39:22) is ready for a start at the Hervis-10K Salzburg CityRun.
Salzburg Marathon is certified as an ecologically sustainable event by Austrian control authorities. Runners enjoy high quality organic food made of local products at the marathon village. Public transport to and from the race is available free of charge to all participants within the city of Salzburg on their day of running by showing their bib number.
The JCP Swansea Half Marathon has urged would-be participants to make sure they don’t miss the cut-off date to register. Registration for the run closes at midnight on Saturday 18th May.
Organisers say the race on Sunday 23rd June is Wales’ biggest summer half marathon, and places are “flying out the door”.
David Martin-Jewell, director of Front Runner Events, said: “Last week was our biggest number of entries to the JCP Swansea Half Marathon in its history. I think that the television coverage we received in 2018 had a big impact on the entrants nationwide this year.”
The race starts from the iconic Brangwyn Hall at the revised time of 10am, which allows runners travelling from further afield to arrive in plenty of time to take part. The course takes runners through the city centre, offering them the scenery of Swansea Bay and city sights of Swansea Marina, SA1, and the city’s museums.
Almost 6,500 registered runners took part in 2018.
The 10km International de Dakhla (MAR) will take place on Sun 15 September 2019, not Sun 11 August 2019 as previously published.
The 20km & 10km International de Marrakech (MAR) will take place on Sun 29 September 2019, not Sun 6 October 2019 as previously published.
As the countdown to the 4th edition of the IDBI Federal Life Insurance Mumbai Half Marathon begins, enthusiastic runners in the city have started their preparation by registering for the promo runs which are being held at different locations across Mumbai over the next few weeks.
The IDBI Federal Life Insurance Mumbai Half Marathon has over the years, become one of the most highly awaited events in Mumbai’s running calendar, with the 2018 edition witnessing participation from over 17,000 enthusiastic runners from all walks of life.
Held during Mumbai’s monsoon season in the Bandra Kurla Complex (BKC) area, participants look forward to running in the cool, pleasant weather amidst overcast skies and light showers.
In a first, last year’s IDBI Federal Life Insurance Mumbai Half Marathon also had a majority of female pacers with 10 out of the 13 pacers being women.
To register for the half marathon to be held on Sunday, 25th August, 2019 or to participate in the promo runs, log onto www.mumbaihalfmarathon.com .
The Great Batumi Night Race (GEO) will take place on Sat 25 April 2020, not Sat 18 April 2020 as previously published.
The Shriram Properties Bengaluru Marathon (IND) will take place on Sun 13 October 2019, not Sun 20 October 2019 as previously published.
The IDBI Federal Life Insurance Mumbai Half Marathon (IND) will take place on Sun 25 August 2019, not Mon 30 September 2019 as previously published.
The Semi Marathon International de la Ville de Béjaia (ALG) will take place on Fri 18 October 2019, not Fri 11 October 2019 as previously published.
Tadu Abatu and Dibabe Kuma celebrated success in duplicate for Ethiopia at the Haspa Marathon Hamburg on Sunday.
In rainy conditions last year’s runner-up Abatu clocked 2:08:25, winning a sprint finish from Ayele Abshero. His fellow-Ethiopian crossed the line just one second behind while Uganda’s 2012 Olympic Marathon Champion Stephen Kiprotich was third in 2:08:31. It was the fourth time in a row that an Ethiopian runner triumphed in the men’s race in Hamburg. Never before were the top three in Hamburg separated by just six seconds.
In contrast to the men, Dibabe Kuma ran away from her rivals soon after halfway. Although slowing in the second half the Ethiopian clocked the sixth fastest time ever run in Hamburg of 2:24:41 despite wet and cold weather. Kenya’s Magdalyne Masai was second with 2:26:02 while Failuna Matanga of Tanzania finished third in 2:27:55.
A total of 35,000 entries were registered by organisers for the 34th edition of the Haspa Marathon Hamburg. This includes races at shorter distances. Around 14,000 ran the classic distance in Germany’s biggest spring marathon.
In tough conditions with more rain than had been forecasted the race never really developed a steady rhythm, as shown by the early kilometre splits ranging from 2:55 and 3:05 per km. A 20-strong group went through 15k in 44:53 which suggested a finishing time of just over 2:06.
But by then one of the top names had surprisingly dropped off the pace. Abel Kirui, twice a World champion, was finding the pace too tough and fell away from the leading group before 15k. The Kenyan had announced before the race that his goal was to break Eliud Kipchoge’s course record in Hamburg: 2:05:30 set in 2013. Those brave words came to naught as Kirui dropped out before 20k.
Another Kenyan star didn’t have the marathon debut he had been hoping for: the double Olympic steeplechase champion Ezekiel Kemboi dropped off the pace shortly before halfway which the big leading group reached in 63:29. Although Kemboi struggled he did finish but his time of 2:17:39 for 30th place can hardly have met his expectations.
The wet and cold conditions ensured that times under 2:07 were hardly likely but the race turned into an exciting contest with nine runners in the leading pack at 30 kilometres. This was reduced to five at 35k but the Ethiopian Jiksa Tolosa and Kenya’s Jonathan Korir dropped off the pace soon after. That left the Ethiopians Abatu and Abshero, the latter third a year ago, and Kiprotich to contest the title.
Three times the Ethiopians seemed to have dropped the 2012 Olympic champion behind only for Stephen Kiprotich to get back into contention. He only succumbed with 400 metres remaining as Abatu and Abshero surged once again with the 21-year-old Abatu winning by a tight margin.
“I am naturally delighted to win a marathon for the first time. I had to adapt to the conditions because the weather has been very different for the past few days. But the rain wasn’t a problem for me. Ayele and I helped each other,” said Tadu Abatu. With 14 runners clocking sub 2:12 times the race had a very good depth.
The women’s race produced a very different story. Dibabe Kuma went to the front at the start and stayed there, despite being pursued by the Kenyans Veronica Nyaruai and Jackline Chepngeno. After a cautious start the pace increased markedly with halfway reached in 71:25, pointing to a finishing time under 2:23. Soon after the Kenyan duo couldn’t maintain the pace set by Dibabe Kuma who led by 32 seconds at 25k.
The 22-year-old Ethiopian continued to extend her lead, going 1:19 clear by 30k. All this was without the support of pacemakers who, like many others, found the wet and chilly conditions caused muscle problems. Even Dibabe Kuma slowed in the last ten kilometres but her finishing time of 2:24:42 was still a creditable performance given the conditions. “I am so happy to have won this marathon. The course is very good,” said Kuma, whose personal best remains the 2:23:34 she ran in Ljubljana last year.
Runner-up and third place remained in doubt right through to the closing stages. Magdalyne Masai of Kenya, who finished in 2:26:02, and the Tanzanian Failuna Matanga, who took third in 2:27:55, moved up from fifth and sixth places at halfway to finish on the podium. In contrast the day turned into disappointment for Jessica Augusto. The Portuguese had won the Haspa Marathon Hamburg title in 2017 but dropped out because of muscle problems at 27k.
Tom Gröschel and Anja Scherl are the winners of the Metro Marathon Düsseldorf. It is the first time in the history of the event that there are two German winners.
Both also took the German Championship as this was included in the race. Tom Gröschel clocked 2:13:49 in cloudy but dry weather conditions, which is a fine personal best and the fastest time by a German this year. In a close finish New Zealand’s Malcom Hicks was second in 2:13:51, just two seconds behind the winner. Denmark’s Thijs Nijhuis took third place with 2:14:18.
Only three weeks after running a marathon comeback race in Hannover, where she finished eighth in 2:32:31, Anja Scherl was a surprise late entry. She took the race in 2:32:56, followed by Hiruni Wijayaratne of Sri Lanka and Turkey’s Ümmü Kiraz, who clocked 2:34:10 and 2:34:37 respectively. In her comeback marathon after injury Germany’s Anna Hahner finished fourth in 2:36:09.
Organisers of the 17th Metro Marathon Düsseldorf registered a total of 20,000 athletes, including races at shorter distances. 3,500 of them were marathon runners. More than 60,000 spectators lined the streets to support the runners.
In a close men’s race a group of four runners passed the half marathon mark in 1:07:23, including Tom Gröschel, Martin Hicks, Thijs Nijhuis and Russia’s Fedor Shutov, who is an Authorised Neutral Athlete (ANA). The same group of runners were still in the lead at the 30k mark (1:35:33) and at 35k (1:51:17). Shutov was running two seconds behind though at 35k and then dropped back.
Between 35 and 40k Tom Gröschel and Malcom Hicks pushed the pace and managed to seperate themselves from the group. The race was then decided in the last few hundred meters with Tom Gröschel sprinting away to win with 2:13:49. ,“I tried to push the pace in the second half and of course I knew the course from last year which gave me a bit of an advantage at the end,” said Tom Gröschel, who became the second German men’s winner of the Metro Marathon Düsseldorf. Carsten Eich was the winner back in 2004 when he ran 2:14:06.
In the women’s race Hiruni Wijayaratne from Sri Lanka passed the half marathon mark leading in 1:15:50. At that point German runners Anja Scherl and Anna Hahner were in second and third with split times of 1:16:49 and 1:16:50. At the 30k mark Wijayaratne still had a big lead. She passed this point in 1:48:20 with Scherl now running alone in second (1:49:05) and Hahner (1:49:53) following in third position. Wijayaratne then could not keep the lead and was overtaken by Scherl shortly after 35k. However she clocked a Sri Lanka record of 2:34:10. “I was hoping to keep up with Anna first and then tried to push the pace after 25k,” said Anja Scherl.
|5||Jovana||DE LA CRUZ||PER||2:37:41|
Former double World Marathon Champion Abel Kirui intends to break Eliud Kipchoge’s course record in Sunday’s Haspa Marathon Hamburg.
The current world record holder clocked 2:05:30 in his debut marathon here back in 2013. Kirui also wants to break 2:05 for the first time in his career. With a personal best of 2:05:04 the Kenyan is the second fastest runner on the start list behind Ethiopia’s Ayele Abshero, who features a personal record of 2:04:23. In an extraordinary deep men’s field 16 athletes have already broken 2:10.
There are five women who have run sub 2:25. Mexiko’s Madai Perez and Dibabe Kuma of Ethiopia head the entry list with personal records of 2:22:59 and 2:23:34 respectively. Jessica Augusto of Purtugal, who won the race two years ago, returns to Hamburg. A very strong group of Japanese elite runners will be in contention as well.
Organisers expect a total of around 35,000 athletes to compete in the Haspa Marathon Hamburg. This includes races at shorter distances staged parallel to the marathon. Almost 14,000 have entered the classic distance of Germany’s biggest and fastest spring marathon.
Noone has come close to Eliud Kipchoge’s course record since the Kenyan ran 2:05:30 six years ago. But Abel Kirui is confident that he can change this. Asked about his goals for Sunday he answered: “My ambition is to break the record.” Actually by mistake Kirui said “world record” instead of “course record”, but of course he did not mean to attack Kipchoge’s 2:01:39 time from Berlin last year. “Everything was going well and I know that the course is a flat one. So if the weather is cool then I will go for a fast race,” said the 36 year-old, who won the World Championships’ marathons in 2009 and 2011. Additionally he won the silver medal in the London Olympic marathon in 2012. “I hope to go through half way in 62:30 and then run the second half a bit faster to finish sub 2:05,” explained Kirui, who ran 2:07:07 in very warm conditions in London a year ago.
Two Ethiopians who placed second and third at the Haspa Marathon Hamburg last year return to the race: Ayele Abshero is the fastest runner on the start list with a personal best of 2:04:23. The 28 year-old ran his best time for four years last year in Hamburg, when he clocked 2:07:19 for third place. “Winning this race would be great. But the field is a very strong one. I would be happy if I could finish in the top three. I will go with the first group,” said Abshero. Tadu Abate was the runner-up in 2018 with 2:06:54 as a debutant, crossing the line just 20 seconds behind fellow-Ethiopian Solomon Deksisa. “My training went well, I had no problems and I am in fine form,” said 21 year-old Abate.
There are two Olympic Champions in Sunday’s race. For the third time in a row Stephen Kiprotich of Uganda will compete in the Haspa Marathon Hamburg. The marathon gold medallist from London 2012 was second here in 2017 and fifth last year with 2:07:31 and 2:07:57 respectively. It will be interesting to see if Ezekiel Kemboi can have an impact in the marathon. The 36 year-old Kenyan won two Olympic titles (2004 and 2012) and four World Championship gold medals in a row (2009 to 2015) in the steeplechase.
Two years ago Jessica Augusto celebrated one of her biggest career victories in Hamburg, when she took the race in 2:25:30 despite very tough weather conditions including hail showers. “If you have been successful then you are happy to come back to that race,” said Jessica Augusto, who suffered a career threatening tibia bone head injury in 2018. “I did not opt for surgery and the conservative treatment did work. Since December I am able to train normally again,” explained Jessica Augusto, who targets at least a podium place on Sunday. Regarding times she wants to make an early statement regarding Olympic qualification. “While the international qualifying time is 2:29:30 I will need to run considerably faster to be selected, because there are six of us who compete for three places. I hope to run around 2:25 on Sunday,” said Augusto.
Jessica Augusto is the fourth fastest on the start list behind Madai Perez of Mexico (2:22:59), Ethiopia’s Dibabe Kuma (2:23:34) and Mao Kiyota from Japan (2:23:47). Unfortunately world half marathon champion Joyciline Jepkosgei cancelled her start in Hamburg. The Kenyan felt not yet ready for her marathon debut.
Fellow Kenyan Jackline Chepngeno could produce a surprise on Sunday. The 26 year-old moved up to the marathon distance last year and clocked a personal best of 2:24:38 in Amsterdam, where she finished sixth. “I want to break my personal best in Hamburg and compete well,” said Chepngeno.
Fedor Shutov is the favourite for the Metro Marathon Düsseldorf on Sunday. The Russian, who is competing as an Authorised Neutral Athlete (ANA), holds the fastest personal best in the elite field with a time of 2:11:26.
While Tom Gröschel is in the national focus, fellow German Anna Hahner returns to marathon racing on Sunday after a long injury break. Both are the favourites for the national championships, which are included in this race.
The international qualifying times set by the IAAF for the World Championships in Doha in late September will be a target for a number of athletes in Düsseldorf, among them a group of South Americans. For the men this time stands at 2:16:00 while the women’s mark is 2:37:00.
Including races at shorter distances a record total of around 20,000 runners have entered the 17th edition of the METRO Marathon Düsseldorf. Around 3,500 will compete in the marathon. The METRO Marathon Düsseldorf will be streamed live at: https://larasch.de/event/metro-marathon-duesseldorf-2019/livestream
“It is my aim to develop the race further,” said the new Race Director Sonja Oberem. The former German top marathon runner, who finished eighth in the Olympic Marathon in Atlanta in 1996, took fifth place in the World Championships in 2001, won a bronze medal at the European Championships in Munich in 2002 and ran a personal best of 2:26:13, took over from Düsseldorf Marathon founder Jan Winschermann recently. Due to financial reasons this year’s elite field is not as strong as it had been in the past. However Sonja Oberem is determined to present stronger fields in the future again. “It was very important for us that our title sponsor Metro renewed our contract for another two years until 2021. Additionally we have great support from the city,” said Sonja Oberem.
In the absence of African elite runners it is Russia’s Fedor Shutov, who is the favourite on Sunday. The 33 year-old clocked his personal best of 2:11:26 in 2016. More recently he ran 2:16:48 in Dublin last autumn. While Russia’s Athletics Federations remains suspended Shutov belongs to the group of Authorised Neutral Athletes (ANA).
Germany’s Tom Gröschel returns to the Metro Marathon Düsseldorf, where he ran a very good debut last year. He produced an upset by taking the national title with a personal best of 2:15:20 here in 2018. “In contrast to last year, when I decided at short notice to run my marathon debut, I am much better prepared now. It is my goal to run a personal best on Sunday,” said the 27-year-old, who was Germany’s best marathoner in the European Championships last year in Berlin, where he finished in 11th position.
There is a group of four runners with personal bests of sub 2:17. Mikhail Krassilov (Kazakhstan/2:16:08), Ronald Schröer (Netherlands/2:16:19), Malcolm Hicks (New Zealand/2:16:28) and Luis Orta Millan (Venezuela/2:16:30) could all go for the Doha qualifying time. Debutant Miguel Amador Montilla of Colombia might be in for a surprise. He ran 66:27 in the Medellin half marathon in altitude last year.
Returning to Düsseldorf where she ran a fine debut of 2:30:14 back in 2012 is Anna Hahner. The 29 year-old former Vienna City Marathon winner (2014) is the only athlete among the women’s elite field who holds a sub 2:30 personal best with 2:26:44.
However the 29 year-old comes back from a long injury period. Her recent half marathon result from Berlin, where she ran 1:15:42 does not suggest that she is capable of running sub 2:30 times yet. And accordingly Anna Hahner said: “It is nice to be back and running smoothly again without any pain or problems. But it will not be about times this spring.” She plans to run the Berlin Marathon in September and will go for the international Olympic qualifying time of 2:29:30 there. As defending champion Fabienne Amrhein had to cancel her start in Düsseldorf at short notice due to an injury to her heel, Anna Hahner is likely to win the national title.
One of the favourites is Peru’s Jovana de la Cruz. The 26 year-old ran her most recent marathon back in 2016, when she finished the Olympic marathon in Rio in a fine 36th position with 2:35:49. Earlier that year she had improved her personal best in Houston, taking fifth place in 2:31:33. In 2018 she ran her half marathon PB of 70:56.
Erika Abril Suarez of Columbia and Norway’s Runa Falch hold personal bests of 2:33:33 and 2:33:52 respectively while there is a former Metro Marathon Düsseldorf champion returning to the race: Hungary’s Zsofia Erdely was the winner in 2016, when she clocked her personal best of 2:35:37.
The PNB MetLife Satara Hill Half Marathon (IND) will take place on Sun 25 August 2019, not Sun 22 September 2019 as previously published.
On Thursday 11 April the telephone rang. At the other end was AIMS President Paco Borao.
He was to arrive in Berlin the next day to watch the basketball match ALBA Berlin in the Eurocup Semi Final against Valencia Basket Club. Paco was among 20 journalists and 1000 fans of the team coming from Valencia with the president of Valencia Basket team Juan Roig, also president of the Foundation Trinidad Alfonso, the title sponsor of the Valencia Marathon where Paco is Race-Director for many years. Paco was also keen to visit the Sportmuseum Berlin – the AIMS Marathoneum – which has been financially supported by AIMS for years.
Nancy Kiprop produced the outstanding performance of the 36th Vienna City Marathon when she broke the women’s course record by over a minute and a half in running 2:22:12 and for good measure also became the first woman to win three VCM titles.
Kiprop led a Kenyan clean sweep of the podium with all three women setting personal bests. Angela Tanui was runner-up in 2:25:37 and Maurine Chepkemoi third with 2:26:16.
In the men’s race Vincent Kipchumba of Kenya won with a personal best of 2:06:56, improving his lifetime best by almost four minutes. He surged away in the closing stages from Switzerland’s Tadesse Abraham who finished second with 2:07:24. Uganda’s Solomon Mutai took third with 2:08:25, improving his best by just over one minute. 40,590 runners were in action in all the events of the Vienna City Marathon on Sunday, which is an IAAF Gold Label Road Race.
Nancy Kiprop came to the Vienna City Marathon and conquered in even more convincing style than on her visits in the last two years. The Kenyan became the first woman to win a hat-trick of VCM titles and what style she showed in the achievement, running a personal best of 2:22:12. It signified an improvement of more than a minute and a half over the previous best of 2:23:47, set by the late Italian Maura Viceconte in 2000.
Reflecting after the race, Kiprop explained that her intention was to go out hard from the start: “I planned to run the first half fast – in 2:20 pace – because I knew the first half was basically faster and I would find the second half a bit tougher.”
For the first five kilometres Kiprop’s rivals at least had a sight of the dynamic Kenyan. Kiprop went through in 16:28 which pointed to a finishing time of 2:19:00 but Ethiopia’s Rahma Tusa was only 10 seconds adrift and fellow Kenyan Angela Tanui 13 seconds behind. Thereafter Nancy Kiprop turned the screw, relentless as planned over the first half to keep the pace sub-2:20.
Kiprop was remorseless in good conditions with temperature at 10 degrees Centigrade at the start. She clocked 32:57 for 10k and went through halfway in 1:09:34, the overall pace still pointing to a low 2:19 which would represent a three minute improvement over her personal best in Frankfurt last October. Her nearest rival was Rahma Tusa, 1:40 behind though the Ethiopian faded later. At halfway Angela Tanui was in third, 2:38 behind and fellow Kenyan Milliam Ebongon was a distant fourth.
Nancy Kiprop was expecting to find the second half more demanding and so it proved, her pace slowing for the first time to outside 2:20: “I knew that from 30 to 35k the course is really tough and this is where I struggled and there was a bit of wind but the people were cheering me on, I was so excited.”
She kept her eyes on the dual prize of course record and VCM hat-trick, slowing down but not by much: 35k was reached in 1:56:43, just outside 2:20 pace. Kiprop was still over three minutes clear of her nearest challenger and that is how it remained as a weary Nancy Kiprop crossed the finish line beside the famous Burgtheater. But recovery came quickly and she was soon contemplating further exploits and a return to Vienna: “I’m confident I could run 2:20 and am already thinking of what to do with the prize money [A total of 21,000 Euro including course record bonus]] to help my school project in Kenya. I would be very happy to return, I feel loved by the people in Vienna and they love my project.”
Nancy Kiprop showed that outstanding performances can be produced not only inside the world famous Burgtheater but also on the finish line beside it.
Vincent Kipchumba confessed surprise at his win but the confident way he moved clear of Switzerland’s Tadesse Abraham shortly after 35k spoke of the confidence he attributed to his new coach: “I was surprised to win but my success is down to my coach, Claudio Berardelli who has advised me since October.”
The pace among the leading men’s group was hardly metronomic. It fluctuated throughout, suggesting an attack on the course record in the early stages when the expected big group went through 15k in 2:05:40 pace. Halfway in 1:03:21 seemed more realistic and racing became a cat and mouse affair. Tadesse Abraham went to the front but was joined by Vincent Kipchumba with first Kenyan Edwin Yator and then Uganda’s Solomon Mutai, the 2013 World Championship bronze medallist, coming into contention.
Tadesse Abraham looked short of the kind of sharpness to make any impression on Mo Farah’s European record, despite his pre-race ambitions: “I was disappointed not to have got close to the record but could still feel Dubai in my legs [2:09:50 in January]. I’ll probably run the World Championships in Doha but shall discuss with my coach first.”
Vincent Kipchuma steadily moved away from the Swiss record holder to win by almost half a minute. His 2:06:56 marked not only his first marathon win but an improvement of almost four minutes on his prior personal best of 2:10:32 in Dresden in 2016. Clearly he and his new coach Claudio Berardelli have found a winning formula.
Sifan Hassan (NED) produced the highlight of the 39th edition of the Generali Berlin Half Marathon with a world-class time and a course record of 1:05:45.
While Hassan was more than three minutes ahead of her nearest rival, the top three men all finished inside three seconds. Kenya’s William Wanjiku won with 1:01:00.
Organisers registered a record number of 35,551 entries from 116 nations for Germany’s biggest half marathon. Adding races staged parallel the entry figure was even 37,087. The Generali Berlin Half Marathon has grown considerably in the past few years and now belongs to the biggest races worldwide at this distance.
Sifan Hassan smashed the event record of 1:07:16, which Kenya’s Edith Masai had established back in 2006. Hassan’s time of 1:05:45 is the fourth fastest in the world this year. In very good weather conditions she was on course for a world record in the first part of the race, but she then slowed and missed the global mark of 1:04:51 as well as her own European record (1:05:15).
“It is early in the season so I lacked a bit of speed. I gave everything, but I simply could not run any faster,” said Sifan Hassan, who passed the 10k mark in a very fast 30:50. The world record was still possible at this stage. “It was a great race and I would like to return next year.”
Kenya’s Veronica Nyaruai, who had surprisingly followed Hassan’s pace for the first kilometres but then dropped back, took second in 1:08:51. While Selamawit Bayoulgn of Ethiopia finished third with 1:09:02, Fabienne Amrhein was the best German runner in sixth place, running a personal best of 1:11:39. “It was great to run a personal best and it is a bonus that I achieved a time under 72 minutes,” Amrhein said.
In contrast to the women’s race the men produced a thrilling sprint finish at Brandenburg Gate: Kenya’s William Wanjiku won the race with 1:01:00. Fellow Kenyans Kilimo Rhonzas (1:01:01) and Alfred Ngeno (1:01:02), who was a pacemaker, followed in second and third positions.
Defending champion and course record holder Eric Kiptanui of Kenya (58:42 in 2018) had to cancel his start at short notice. And that was probably the reason why the race lacked some speed.. “We wanted to run 59 minutes. But our pace was not consistent which made it very difficult. I knew already after seven kilometres that we will not run under one hour today. This is why I concentrated on winning the race,” said William Wanjiku, who missed his personal best by just four seconds.
Germany’s Richard Ringer ran a fine debut, placing seventh with 1:02:10. With this result the European 10,000m European Cup Champion from 2018 became the tenth fastest German half marathoner ever. “I wanted to run a bit quicker, but I could not go any faster. I have not quite arrived on the roads yet,” said Richard Ringer. Fellow German Amanal Petros finished ninth with 1:02:32.
Debutant Silas Mwetich won the 29th HAJ Hannover Marathon while Racheal Mutgaa took the women’s race, breaking the course record.
Kenya’s Mwetich ran his marathon debut in fine weather conditions and surprisingly won the race in 2:09:37. Fellow Kenyan Hosea Kipkemboi was second with 2:10:40, Ethiopia’s Debas Alebachew Wale took third place in 2:10:57. Last year’s winner Seboka Negusse of Ethiopia, one of the favourites, dropped out at the 35k mark.
Racheal Mutgaa won the women’s race in a course record time of 2:26:15, improving the former mark by almost a minute. Back in 2013 Ukraine’s Olena Burkovska ran 2:27:07. In a contest that was very close for a long time Kenya’s Mutgaa finished ahead of Ethiopia’s Tigist Memuye Gebeyahu who clocked 2:27:35. Karolina Nadolska of Poland was third in 2:27:43.
Switzerland’s Tadesse Abraham and Kenya’s defending champion Nancy Kiprop will face a tough challenge when they will try to achieve significant victories at the 36th edition of the Vienna City Marathon on 7th April.
Abraham, who hopes to become the first European winner since 2001, is one of ten men on the start list with personal bests of sub 2:10. Meanwhile Kiprop could become the first woman to win Austria’s biggest sporting event for the third time.
On her way to a possible hat-trick the Kenyan will have to beat a field that includes five other athletes who have run sub 2:28 before. Including other running events staged parallel to the marathon organisers of the Vienna City Marathon expect more than 40,000 entries for their IAAF Gold Label Road Race event.
With a personal best of 2:06:40 Tadesse Abraham is not the fastest runner on the start list any more. This is because of the addition of Gilbert Kirwa to the field. The Kenyan, who ran 2:06:14 when he took the Frankfurt Marathon in 2009, has done very well at the Vienna City Marathon in the past. Ten years ago he took the unique debutants’ only race in the Austrian capital with 2:08:21. In 2009 organisers allowed only debutants to compete in the elite races. Three years later Kirwa returned to Vienna, finishing fourth in 2:08:09.
Kirwa could not match these sort of performances in the past two years, so the strongest challenge for Eritrean-born Tadesse Abraham might come from four other Kenyans: Kenneth Keter ran a 2:07:34 debut in Frankfurt last October, Victor Kipchirchir won in Valencia in 2016 with 2:07:39, Robert Chemosin has a PB of 2:08:05 and is the Vienna City Marathon winner from 2016 while Raymond Choge took the Kosice Marathon last autumn with 2:08:11. While Uganda’s Solomon Mutai (2:09:27) was the bronze medallist in the World Championships’ marathon in 2015, Brimin Misoi could be in for a surprise: The Kenyan took the Athens Marathon in November, clocking a personal best of 2:10:56 on this hilly and very demanding course. On the flat course in Vienna Misoi should be able to run considerably faster.
Two women might well be locked into a battle for victory on 7th April: Nancy Kiprop and Rahma Tusa, whose personal bests are exactly one minute apart. Defending champion Kiprop, who goes for a hat-trick on 7th April, improved to 2:22:46 in Frankfurt last year. Tusa is the winner of last year’s Rome Marathon. She took that race in a PB of 2:23:46.
Besides winning Kiprop has an eye on the course record as well. Italy’s late Maura Viceconte, who tragically died earlier this year, established this mark back in 2000 when she ran 2:23:47. Nancy Kiprop came close to the record in 2017 and 2018 with winning times of 2:24:20 and 2:24:18 respectively. On both occasions the weather conditions were not favorable for fast times with strong winds in 2017 and then high temperatures last year. “Defending my title and setting a course record is what I wish for and hope to achieve,” said Nancy Kiprop.
Angela Tanui is an athlete who could challenge Kiprop and Tusa in Vienna. The Kenyan set her personal best of 2:26:31 in the Austrian capital two years ago when she finished fifth. Tanui showed fine form recently when she won the Napoli Half Marathon with 69:53.
The Maybank Bali Marathon (INA) will take place on Sun 8 September 2019, not Mon 9 September 2019 as previously published.
The Association of International Marathons and Distance Races (AIMS) is proud to confirm the founding members of the ‘AIMS Women’s Commission’, a world women’s running movement which was launched by AIMS Vice President Martha Morales and President Paco Borao on 8 March 2019 in Nagoya, Japan to coincide with International Women’s Day and the AIMS Member and the world’s largest marathon for women (22,000 runners), the Nagoya Women’s Marathon (Sunday 10 March 2019).
On Sunday 10 March 2019, the AIMS Women’s Commission presented Commonwealth Games Gold Medallist, Namibia’s Helalia Johannes with the first ‘AIMS Inspirational Woman Award’ after her victory in the Nagoya Women’s Marathon.
The founding members of the ‘AIMS Women’s Commission’ bring decades of experience in the sport of running and in working to promote female participation and empowerment around the world.
The Commission is led by AIMS Vice President Martha Morales.
The founding members of the ‘AIMS Women’s Commission’ are:
Martha Morales – AIMS Vice President, a position she was elected to in 2010 at the 18th World Congress of AIMS. Martha has been in charge of developing AIMS Children’s Series bringing sport and promoting health to young people in challenging circumstances around the world. Martha is a race official for the BMW Tangamanga International Marathon in Mexico. She is also an active marathon runner and lawyer.
Paco Borao – AIMS President. Paco was elected President at the 18th World Congress of AIMS. Paco Borao is President of Correcaminos de Valencia, which organises the Marathon and Half Marathon in Valencia. A race, under Paco’s guidance, that has created history by staging several world record performances. Under Paco’s leadership, AIMS has seen substantial membership growth and is now the largest and most diverse marathon and distance race organisation in the world covering 460 races in 115 counties and territories.
Dagmawit Amare – Strategic & Innovations Manager, Great Ethiopian Run. Dagmawit has worked with the Great Ethiopian Run for 15 years, staging more than 130 mass participation races throughout Ethiopia including the ‘Women First 5k’, one of the largest women-only races in the world with 13,000 participants in 2019. Damatwit has pioneered utilising women’s running to raise important social matters for women in Africa.
Inna Chernoblavskaya – Head of International Department, Moscow Marathon. Inna has engaged with government agencies, the Russian Olympic Committee, the Russian Athletic Federation and national anti-doping agency RUSADA to develop athletics in Russia. She has managed the reception of the Marathon Flame in Omsk in 2010 and the AIMS Board meeting in Moscow during the 2013 World Championships in Athletics.
Stacey Conley – Athlete, Advocate, Past-President, Conley Sports Productions. As President of Conley Sports Productions, she was the Assistant Race Director of the Austin Marathon & Half Marathon (USA) for nearly 20 years. Stacey’s work as an advocate for women’s participation in the Austin Marathon and related events has seen an increase of 55% in women’s participation.
Renna Nelis – AIMS PR Manager for Estonia & General Manager & Competitions Organiser, Tallinn Marathon. Renna has worked with the Tallinn Marathon since 2000. Renna has worked with a women-only event in Tallinn which attracts 15,000 runners – more than 2% of the national female population. Renna is recognised and highly regarded as a pioneer for women’s athletics in Northern Europe.
Tetsuya ‘Teddy’ Okamura – AIMS Board Member. Teddy was elected to the AIMS Board at the 22nd World Congress of AIMS in 2018. Teddy is Race Director of the Nagoya Women’s Marathon in Japan, the largest women’s marathon in the world. He is Sporting Event Producer with Chunichi Shimbun Co., Ltd one of the world’s most prominent media companies. Teddy lectures in Sociology, Mass Communication, Environmental Studies and Tourism. Teddy is also AIMS Continental PR Manager for Asia.
Alessandra Ramella Pairin – AIMS Continental PR Manager for Europe. Alessandra brings years of experience in working in communication and global sports. As well as athletics where she is a prominent and highly respected person, she has worked in Alpine Ski World Championships and World Cups, Winter Olympics (Turin, 2006). In Athletics, she has worked in the organization of some of the most important running events in Italy both in private clubs (Turin Marathon 2001-2015) and with the Italian Athletics Federation. Alessandra also pioneered event media coverage utilising drone technology in Italian sport.
Maria Polyzou – Legendary athlete, author and speaker. Maria was the first female Greek runner to compete in an Olympic Marathon, in Atlanta (1996). She was the Greek champion for 20 consecutive years and remains to date the Greek record holder with a time of 2:33.40. In 2010, to celebrate 2,500 years since the Battle of Marathon, Maria became the first woman in history to complete the ‘Pheidippides Feat’ by running the 520km from Athens to Sparta and back to Marathon over six days. She is the author of the “Spirit and Body: The Timeline of a Feat of 524 km” and has delivered dozens of lectures on the values of sport and of the Marathon.
Václav Skřivánek – AIMS Board Member. Václav is the Race Director of RunCzech Running League events (7 IAAF Road Race Gold Labels) including the Volkswagen Prague Marathon in Czechia. Václav is highly qualified in academic and practical spheres of information science.
Shirley Yang – AIMS PR Manager for China. Shirley has taken on the role of developing social activities for the Chinese Athletic Association (CAA). She was responsible for organising and marketing of the Marathon movement in China which has seen phenomenal growth: In 2011 there were 22 Marathon races in China. This reached 328 in 2016, 1,102 in 2017 (an increase of over 335% year on year), and 1,581 in 2018, 70 times the amount in 2011. Over 5.8 million runners competed in these events in 2018. Shirley is also the member of Beijing Marathon organising committee (11 years holding an IAAF Road Race Gold Label), which has the longest history of the marathon in China.
The AIMS Women’s Commission has been created in support of goal 5 in the United Nation’s 2030 Agenda of Sustainable Development: “Achieve gender equality and empower all women and girls.”
The AIMS Women’s Commission has been founded with the following objectives:
For more information about the United Nation’s 2030 Agenda of Sustainable Development visit https://www.un.org/sustainabledevelopment/development-agenda/
The Okpekpe International 10km Road Race (NGR) will take place on Sat 25 May 2019, not Sat 18 May 2019 as previously published.
The streets of Pafos were flooded once again with around 3,500 runners who participated in the 21st Logicom Cyprus Marathon, held on Sunday, 17th March 2019.
The running festival incorporated four distances on Sunday with a Marathon, Half-Marathon, 10km Race and a 5km Fun Run. On Friday 15th March, a 5km “Cyprus Wine Run” was organized at the Vasilikon Winery in the picturesque village of Kathikas. Added to the running events, the “Cyprus Marathon Symposium” was organized for the first time, which included lectures from all parts of the running world such as technology, history, performance, impact on society and sports tourism.
The story of the day was the back to back win of the British runner Adam Holland who won in 2:35:03, just two minutes over the course record. He was more than seven minutes in front of the second-placed runner Ian Livesey (finish time of 2:42:31), also from Great Britain.
Olympic Champions Stephen Kiprotich and Ezekiel Kemboi as well as Jessica Augusto are the star names among a group of elite runners added to the Haspa Marathon Hamburg.
World half marathon record holder Joyciline Jepkosgei and former double world marathon champion Abel Kirui had been announced earlier.
Germany’s biggest spring marathon will take place on 28 April with an intriguing elite field. The mass field will be impressive as well: Including other running events staged parallel organisers expect up to 35,000 athletes to compete. Online entry is still possible at: www.haspa-marathon-hamburg.de
The 2012 Olympic marathon champion Stephen Kiprotich will return once again to the Haspa Marathon Hamburg. Uganda’s gold medallist from London, who took the world championships’ marathon in 2013 as well, was second here in 2017 and fifth last year. On both occasions the 29 year-old, who is Uganda’s national record holder with 2:06:33, ran 2:07 times. It will be the first time that an Olympic marathon champion will compete for the third time in a row in an elite race of a German marathon. “We are more than happy to welcome Stephen back to our race. His return also shows the international position of the Haspa Marathon Hamburg as one of the major spring marathons,” said chief organiser Frank Thaleiser.
While Joyciline Jepkosgei will run her debut the men’s race will also feature a very prominent debutant who is an Olympic champion as well: Ezekiel Kemboi has chosen the Haspa Marathon Hamburg for his first race at the classic distance. The 36 year-old Kenyan won two Olympic titles (2004 and 2012) and four World Championship gold medals in a row (2009 to 2015) in the steeplechase. Kemboi’s debut is long awaited one. With a modest personal best of 64:15, which he ran in a race in Kenya, he did not establish himself as a leading half marathon runner. However he ran only very few races at the distance. It will be interesting to see what sort of impact Ezekiel Kemboi can have in the marathon.
The fastest runner on the start list is Ayele Abshero, who is returning to the race. Back in 2012 the Ethiopian clocked his personal best of 2:04:23 when he won his marathon debut in Dubai. While he did not come close to this sort of time Abshero did very well at the Haspa Marathon Hamburg: He was third here last year with a fine 2:07:19.
Abel Kirui, who was World Marathon Champion in 2009 and 2011, is the number two on the start list with a personal best of 2:05:04. The Kenyan said that he intends to attack Hamburg’s course record of 2:05:30, set by Eliud Kipchoge in his marathon debut in 2013. Fellow-Kenyans Jonathan Korir and Amos Mitei, who have personal bests of 2:06:51 and 2:07:28 respectively, are expected to join the hunt. There will also be a Japanese elite runner in the field: Taku Fujimoto clocked his personal best of 2:07:57 in last year’s Chicago Marathon.
The 34th edition of the Haspa Marathon Hamburg sees the return of a former champion in the women’s race: Jessica Augusto won here two years ago with 2:25:30, a time that remained the fastest by a European throughout 2017. 37 year-old Augusto holds a personal best of 2:24:25. While the debut of Kenya’s world half marathon record holder Joyciline Jepkosgei (64:51) will be very much in the focus in Hamburg there are three women who have run faster than Jessica Augusto: Madai Perez of Mexico (PB: 2:22:59), Japan’s Tomomi Tanaka (2:23:19) and Dibabe Kuma of Ethiopia (2:23:34).
“Our strategy to give a platform to young and upcoming athletes as well as established and charismatic runners has been very successful. The Haspa Marathon Hamburg has built a very good reputation. To present runners like Stephen Kiprotich, Ezekiel Kemboi and Jessica Augusto is helpful with regard to promotion but also an added bonus for our spectators on race day,” said Frank Thaleiser.
The Association of International Marathons and Distance Races (AIMS) recognised Helalia Johannes (Namibia), the winner of the Nagoya Women’s Marathon, with its first “Inspirational Woman Award” after her victory on Sunday.
Johannes ran a time of 2:22:25 to win the race.
Nagoya Women’s Marathon is the world’s largest women’s marathon, recognised by Guinness World Records, with 20,000 women.
The Leader of the AIMS Women’s Commission (a world women’s running movement aiming to improve the participation of women in distance running throughout the world while empowering women through the sport of running) Martha Morales said: “The AIMS Women’s Commission is delighted to recognise Helalia Johannes with our first AIMS Inspirational Woman Award.”
“The commission seeks to highlight and promote inspirational women as ambassadors of health, running, sport and great human values; to inspire other women around the world striving to meet their own goals and aims in sport and in life.”
“Helalia Johannes with her great victory today, while leading 20,000 other women around the wonderful course in the beautiful Japanese city of Nagoya, will help inspire women of all ages to live a healthy lifestyle by keeping fit through running and helping and encouraging other girls and women to participate in sport and help them believe in and achieve what they want from their lives.”
The trophy, a laurel wreath from the home of the marathon – Athens, Greece –, was presented by AIMS President Paco Borao.
The AIMS Women’s Commission was launched by AIMS Vice President Martha Morales and President Paco Borao on Friday 8th March 2019, to coincide with International Women’s Day.
The AIMS Women’s Commission has been in development since the AIMS World Congress held in Tallinn, Estonia in September 2018, where the creation of three Commissions was announced covering the following areas – Women, Safety & Security and Environmental.
The Association of International Marathons and Distance Races (AIMS) is delighted to announce the creation of the ‘AIMS Women’s Commission’, a world women’s running movement aiming to improve the participation of women in distance running throughout the world while empowering women through the sport of running.
The Commission was launched by AIMS Vice President Martha Morales and President Paco Borao today, Friday 8 March, to coincide with International Women’s Day and the AIMS Member Nagoya Women’s Marathon (Sunday 10th March 2019), the largest women’s marathon in the world.
The AIMS Women’s Commission has been in development since the AIMS World Congress held in Tallinn, Estonia in September 2018, where the creation of three Commissions was announced covering the following areas – Women, Safety & Security and Environmental.
AIMS has recognised that there is currently no formal global women’s running movement and while participation among women has increased in most parts of the world, the USA in particular, there are still areas of the world where women struggle, for different reasons, to participate in the sport of running. This Commission has been created in support of goal 5 in the United Nation’s 2030 Agenda of Sustainable Development: “Achieve gender equality and empower all women and girls.”
The AIMS Women’s Commission has been founded with the following objectives:
The Commission will be led by AIMS Vice President Martha Morales.
AIMS President Paco Borao comments: “I am deeply pleased that AIMS is going to lead this global movement of women runners. The Commission will be founded on the principles of inclusion and friendship and work towards the core objective of empowering women through the sport of running.”
AIMS Vice President Martha Morales comments: “I am excited to be leading this new Commission focused on women in running. It feels very special to launch this Commission on International Women’s Day in Nagoya, the home of the largest women’s marathon in the world. We look forward to working together with AIMS members, stakeholders and the global running community.”
AIMS Commissions in the areas of ‘Safety & Security’ and ‘Sustainability’ will be launched in the coming weeks.
Germany’s Arne Gabius and Anja Scherl hope to challenge the favourites from Kenya and Ethiopia at the HAJ Hannover Marathon on 7 April.
The race has developed into one of Germany’s leading international marathons and is an IAAF Silver Label Road Race. Including other events staged parallel to the marathon organisers expect a total entry figure of more than 25,000 runners.
National marathon record holder Arne Gabius will hope to finish on the podium of a marathon for the first time in his career. The 37 year-old came very close in Frankfurt in 2015, when he finished fourth, breaking the 27 year-old German record with a time of 2:08:33. Hannover’s six year-old course record from Lusapho April of South Africa is just one second faster than Gabius’ personal best. “Hannover is one of three spring marathon races where I have to put things right,” said Arne Gabius, who dropped out of the HAJ Hannover Marathon close to the 33k mark two years ago due to an achilles tendon problem.
Arne Gabius is the second fastest on the current start list behind Duncan Koech. The Kenyan was third in Hannover last year with 2:10:19 and holds a personal record of 2:07:53 from Cologne in 2012. The 37 year-old was fourth in the Vienna City Marathon in 2013 with 2:09:17. Samwel Maswai is another Kenyan who features a PB of sub 2:09. While he ran 2:08:52 in the 2013 Berlin Marathon where he finished fifth he was third in Vienna last year with 2:11:08 in very warm weather conditions.
Four more runners who feature personal bests of sub 2:10 are on the current start list for the 29th edition of the HAJ Hannover Marathon: Kenyans Edwin Kimaiyo (2:09:12), Paul Kangogo (2:09:20) and Josphat Leting (2:09:34) as well as Ethiopia’s Alebachew Wale (2:09:40).
In the women’s race Anja Scherl hopes to bounce back after a year to forget in 2018. Back in 2016 she ran the best race of her career, when she finished third in the Hamburg Marathon and improved her PB by a staggering margin of more than eight minutes to 2:27:50. Scherl then was the best German runner in the Olympic Games marathon with a 44th place. She ran two good marathons in quick succession in 2017 and 2018: In November 2017 Scherl was fifth in Valencia with 2:28:54, the second fastest in her career. Little more than two months later she took fourth in Osaka in 2:29:29. However injuries then stopped her and she could not compete at the European Championships in Berlin.
There are two athletes who have run faster than 32 year-old Anja Scherl. Karolina Nadolska is the fastest on the start list. The Polish runner holds a personal best of 2:26:32 with which she was second in Osaka in 2014. Ethiopia’s Tigist Memuye Gebeyahu has competed in China a number of times. Her biggest career win came when she took the Zhengzhou Marathon two years ago, improving her personal best by more than nine minutes to 2:27:39. Kenya’s Racheal Mutgaa will be among the favourites on 7 April as well. She ran 2:28:39 in last year’s Hefei Marathon (China), breaking 2:30 for the first time and placing second.
Defending champion Nancy Kiprop returns to the Vienna City Marathon on 7 April, targeting a hat-trick at Austria’s biggest and most spectacular road running event.
The Kenyan could become the first woman in the history of the traditional event to achieve three victories.
One of her main challengers will be Ethiopia’s Rahma Tusa, the 2018 winner of the Rome Marathon. Adding other running events a total of more than 40,000 athletes is expected for the 36th Vienna City Marathon, which is an IAAF Gold Label Road Race.
More than 30 years ago, when African elite marathon runners played no significant role yet, there was an Austrian who managed to achieve a hat-trick in Vienna: Gerhard Hartmann took the race three times in a row, from 1985 to 1987. More recently Kenya’s Henry Sugut became a three-time champion with victories in 2010, 2012 and 2013. While no woman has achieved this feat Nancy Kiprop is in a position to do so when she returns to the Vienna City Marathon. Two years ago she won in Vienna with a personal best of 2:24:20 after a very close finish. Kiprop was just five seconds ahead of fellow-Kenyan Rebecca Chesire. A year later she had a huge advantage of more than five minutes, when she clocked a PB of 2:24:18 despite very warm weather conditions. In the meantime 39 year-old Kiprop improved this time to 2:22:46 in Frankfurt last October.
“For me it is an easy decision to return to Vienna, as the race is well organised, people are welcoming and I feel appreciated and respected. I am truly humbled by each experience in Vienna,” said Nancy Kiprop, who has seven children and founded a school in her home village Chesitek near to Iten.
Nancy Kiprop’s strongest rival may well be Rahma Tusa. The 25 year-old Ethiopian has already achieved a hat-trick when she won the Rome Marathon for the third time in a row in 2018. Last year she improved her personal best to 2:23:46 in the Italian capital. Tusa also showed a fine performance in the New York City Marathon last November, finishing fifth with 2:27:13.
Besides Nancy Kiprop there is another former Vienna City Marathon Champion returning to the race: Switzerland’s national record holder Maja Neuenschwander hopes for a successful return to the marathon after a stress fracture ruined her season last year. The 39 year-old was a surprise winner of the Vienna City Marathon in 2015 with 2:30:09 and then clocked the Swiss record of 2:26:49 in Berlin later that year. In Rio’s Olympic Marathon in 2016 she achieved a fine 29th place. However since then Maja Neuenschwander did not finish a marathon.
The Angkor Wat International Half Marathon (CAM) will take place on Sun 8 December 2019, not Sun 1 December 2019 as previously published.
The Raiffeisen Bank Bucharest Marathon (ROU) will take place on Sun 13 October 2019, not Mon 14 October 2019 as previously published.
The Standard Chartered Singapore Marathon (SIN) will take place on Sat 30 November 2019, not Sun 1 December 2019 as previously published.
Next year’s event will take place on Sat 5 December 2020, not Sun 6 December 2020 as previously published.
The EDP Rock ’n’ Roll Madrid Maratón & 1/2 (ESP) will take place on Sat 27 April 2019, not Sun 28 April 2019 as previously published.
The 3-Sjøersløpet (NOR) will take place on Sat 9 November 2019, not Sat 2 November 2019 as previously published.
Swiss record holder Tadesse Abraham will run his next marathon in Austria. Organisers of the Vienna City Marathon confirmed the start of the 36 year-old who holds a personal best of 2:06:40 and was runner-up in the European Championships’ marathon in Berlin last summer.
Returning to Vienna will be the winner of the race from 2016, Robert Chemosin. Kenneth Keter is another Kenyan who can challenge Tadesse Abraham in the Austrian capital.
Including running events at shorter distances staged parallel to the marathon, organisers expect more than 40,000 athletes for the 36th edition of the Vienna City Marathon. Entries for this IAAF Gold Label Road Race – the highest category in international road running – are still accepted online at: www.vienna-marathon.com
For Tadesse Abraham it is about bouncing back in Vienna. He competed at the Dubai Marathon in January, but did not reach the level he had hoped and trained for. Instead of breaking his personal best he had to be content with a 2:09:50 performance and tenth place in the United Arab Emirates. Since Tadesse Abraham is the fastest runner on the current start list he will run in Vienna with a different goal: “My main aim will be to win the Vienna City Marathon. However I want to run a good time as well,” said Tadesse Abraham, who could become the first European male winner of the race for 18 years. Back in 2001 Luis Novo of Portugal took the race with 2:10:28. Since then there were only African winners in Vienna.
“It is too early to speak about possible time goals, but I want to run faster than in Dubai,” said Tadesse Abraham, who travels to his training camp in Addis Ababa this Wednesday. Apart from a 15k test race in Switzerland in mid March he will stay in Ethiopia until a few days before the Vienna City Marathon.
Originally from Eritrea, Tadesse Abraham received Swiss citizenship in June 2014. Since then he has been among the very best European marathon runners. With a seventh place in the Olympic race in 2016 Abraham was the strongest European in Rio. Qualifying for the Games in Tokyo next year is a major goal for the European half marathon champion from 2016.
A faster time than Abraham’s Dubai result will most certainly be needed to be in contention for victory in Vienna on 7 April. A runner who has the advantage of knowing the course and how to win in the Austrian capital is Robert Chemosin. In very windy conditions the Kenyan took the race in 2016 with 2:09:48. “This is the beginning of a new life for me,” Chemosin said after his triumph in Vienna. A year earlier he had shown that he can run considerably faster when he was runner-up in Warsaw in 2:08:05. The 30 year-old also holds a very good half marathon personal best of 59:19.
Another strong contender is 22 year-old Kenneth Keter. The youngster from Kenya ran a fine debut marathon in Frankfurt last October despite windy conditions, taking fifth place with 2:07:34. He will be eager to improve his time when he runs his second marathon in Vienna.
The 1/2 Maraton de Bucaramanga – FCV (COL) will take place on Sun 20 October 2019, not Mon 28 October 2019 as previously published.
The Wizz Air Skopje Marathon (MKD) will take place on Sat 4 May 2019, not Sun 5 May 2019 as previously published.
The Minsk Half Marathon (BLR) will take place on Sun 15 September 2019, not Sun 8 September 2019 as previously published.
The Maraton Varmex (MEX) will take place on Sun 20 October 2019, not Sun 14 July 2019 as previously published.
Next year’s event will take place on Sun 18 October 2020, not Sun 12 July 2020 as previously published.
World half marathon record holder Joyciline Jepkosgei will run her debut at the full distance in Hamburg on 28 April this year.
The marathon debut of the 25 year-old Kenyan is one eagerly awaited in international road running. The organisers of the Haspa Marathon Hamburg also confirmed that Abel Kirui will compete in the men’s race. The Kenyan has won two World Championship gold medals and an Olympic silver. He intends to attack Eliud Kipchoge’s course record on 28 April.
“We are extremely proud to welcome these two outstanding athletes among many other promising elite runners to our race. It will be fascinating to see what immediate impact Joyciline Jepkoskei can have in the marathon. In contrast Abel Kirui has so much experience. We hope that he can use this well and produce something special on our fast course,” said chief organiser Frank Thaleiser.
Joyciline Jepkosgei achieved a sensational breakthrough in 2017, when she broke a total of six world records. Four of those came in one race: the Kenyan won the half marathon in Prague in 64:52, passing 10k in 30:05, 15k in 45:37 and 20k in 61:25. Later in the year she improved her 10k global record to 29:43 and then established the current world half marathon record of 64:51 in Valencia.
When Joyciline Jepkosgei now turns to the marathon there is a parallel to the greatest runner of the distance ever, Eliud Kipchoge. The Kenyan Olympic Champion and world record holder also ran his debut in Hamburg. Back in 2013 Kipchoge won the race with a course record of 2:05:30 that still stands today.
However Jepkosgei did not think about Kipchoge when she opted for Hamburg. “My manager Gianni Demadonna and my coach Gabriele Nicola both told me that Hamburg has a fast and flat course,” said Joyciline Jepkosgei, who hopes “for a good debut” on 28 April. “I would like to achieve a time of around 2:22. But there are still two months of preparation to come. I have to wait and see how my body reacts to the training. Once I am a week away from the race I will see in what kind of form I am. Then I will determine my final goal.”
Since the beginning of the year Joyciline Jepkosgei has started training for her marathon debut under the guidance of her new coach Gabriele Nicola. If Jepkosgei, who usually trains with male pacemakers, can build good form in the coming weeks Hamburg’s course record could be within reach. Maybe Jepkosgei can then follow in the footsteps of Kipchoge by breaking it in her debut in Hamburg. Ethiopia’s Meselech Melkamu holds this mark with a time of 2:21:54 from 2016.
According to Abel Kirui the men’s elite race will definitely see an attempt to break the course record. “I am focussing on Hamburg. The race will be a big challenge for me as I want to break Eliud Kipchoge’s course record. It will not be easy as it is a 2:05 time. However I really want to do it. It will be a big show,” said the 36-year-old Kenyan, who won world marathon titles in 2009 and 2011. Kirui, who holds a personal best of 2:05:04, also took the silver medal in the Olympic marathon in 2012. A year ago he was fourth in London and then seventh in Chicago, clocking sub 2:08 times in both races.
The Linker Oevert Marathon (BEL) will take place on Sun 20 October 2019, not Sun 13 October 2019 as previously published.
The world running organisation the Association of International Marathons and Distance Races (AIMS) is delighted to recognise the Kenyan athlete Peres Jepchirchir with the AIMS World Record Award.
Peres broke the Half Marathon World Record, setting a time of 1:05:06 at the Ras al Khaimah Half Marathon on 10 February 2017. Peres has since taken time away from the sport to start a family, recently returning to competition. While the record was broken a month later by her compatriot Joyciline Jepkosgei, AIMS has a proud tradition of recognising every World Record since 1985.
Joyciline was presented with her AIMS World Record Award in October 2018. She received the award in advance of the Airtel Delhi Half Marathon in recognition of her Half Marathon World Record of 1:04:51 set at the Medio Maraton Valencia Trinidad Alfonso EDP on 22 October 2017.
Haitham Mattar, CEO of the Ras Al Khaimah Tourism Development Authority and Nathan Clayton, Race Director of the Ras al Khaimah Half Marathon presented Peres with her award as part of a pre-race media event in advance of the Ras al Khaimah Half Marathon on Friday 8 February.
The time of 1:05:06 was recognised as the world record by the IAAF (International Association of Athletics Federations) and by AIMS (Association of International Marathons and Distance Races which represents over 447 distance running events in 117 countries and territories). AIMS set the world record criteria for performances on the road later adopted by the IAAF.
AIMS President Paco Borao commented: “We are delighted to see Peres’ achievement recognised with the AIMS World Record Award. Everyone at AIMS, our members and sponsors would like to pass on their congratulations.”
Peres Jepchirchir commented: “I am very pleased to be presented with this award. Being back at the Ras Al Khaimah Half Marathon brings back so many special memories for me. I would like to thank AIMS for presenting me with this trophy on behalf of their members and sponsors around the world.”
Nathan Clayton, Race Director of the Ras al Khaimah Half Marathon commented: “We are very pleased to welcome Peres back to the Ras Al Khaimah Half Marathon where she set the World Record. It was a very special moment in the history of our event. We would like to thank AIMS for helping make this presentation possible.”
Haitham Mattar, CEO of Ras Al Khaimah Tourism Development Authority said: “We are delighted to see how the Ras Al Khaimah Half Marathon secured its place as one of the most sought after half marathons in the world, with professional athletes such as Peres Jepchirchir setting their best results. We look forward to welcoming our guests to enjoy both a world class racing experience and the hospitality that Ras Al Khaimah has to offer.”
The Marathon Vert D’Agadir (MAR) will take place on Sun 31 March 2019, not Sun 21 April 2019 as previously published.