Perhaps inspired by Portugal's World Cup quarter-final win over England the previous afternoon, Helder Ornellas took up the early running in the sixth edition of this race. It was the the hottest day of the year so far, 26°C at the race start, and the opening kilometre along Piccadilly was a restrained 3:04. The second kilometre, along Pall Mall and through Trafalgar Square, was slightly quicker. Ornellas leda group of seven along the Embankment, through 3km in 9 minutes exactly. Patrick Makau, who had won the Vidovdan 10km in Bosnia only four days before in temperatures as high as 37°C, then ran the fourth kilometre in 2:50. He took John Nyasinjya with him and the two Africans ran together after making the first of several U-turns at 4.5km, until about 8km, the pair of them steadily moving away from Ornellas.
At the second turn, just past 8km, Makau led by a few metres and his lead did not really grow until he was about 600m from home. He turned into Whitehall clearly intent upon getting under 30 minutes, and managed this with ease.
In the women's race Cathy Mutwa had a runaway win, and made a point of commenting on the great reception that the back markers gave her as she returned along the Embankment.
MEN: 1 Patrick MAKAU KEN 29:52 2 John NYASINJYA BUR 30:09 3 Helder ORNELLAS POR 30:48 4 Taylor MURPHY CAN 30:55 5 Huw LOBB GBR 30:56 6 Toby LAMBERT GBR 31:16 7 Antonio SOUSA POR 31:21 8 Darren FOWLIE GBR 32:52 9 Matthew BLUNDEN GBR 33:09 10 Graham BROOK GBR 33:13 WOMEN: 1 Cathy MUTWA KEN 34:19 2 Victoria WEBSTER GBR 35:57 3 Sarah STRADLING GBR 37:07 4 Jessica PYGALL GBR 37:36 5 Jodie FORBES GBR 38:29 6 Dee NUSTEDT GBR 39:18 7 Becky MCNICHOLAS GBR 39:19 8 Elaine PHIPPS GBR 39:27 9 Rebecca GALBRAITH GBR 39:40 WOMEN'S 5km race 1 Jody WHYMAN GBR 20:46 2 Lily ANGUS GBR 22:23 3 Margaret GREENE GBR 22:31
Lee Troop stormed away to a commanding win. He passed halfway in 1:05:09, already 2.20 up on Gemechu Woyecha, who occupied an isolated second place. Woyecha lost only another 40 seconds to Troop in the second half of the race, and Scott Winton, Matt Dravitzki and Tsutomu Saeki had a much closer duel for the last podium place: Winton and Saeki trailed Dravitzky by a second at halfway, as the trio passed through more than 200m behind Woyecha, Winton's second half was the fastest, by a meagre five seconds over Dravitzky and 10 over Saeki.
In the women's race Saori Kawai nmade a bold bid for victory, passing through halfway in 1:19:41, almost 200m ahead of Jennifer Gillard, who ran a remarkably even-paced race. Behind her, Helen Stanton and Melanie Burke also held form well over the second half of the race to push Kawai down into fourth place. Eliza Meyger, who lagged Gillard by only 10 seconds at halfway, suffered for the early pace even more than Kawai.
The women's half marathon demonstrated the quality that enthusiastic Japanese participation brings to this race, as behind the leading trio two more Japanese and one Australian runner finished within the next 28 seconds: six runners finishing under 73:30.
MEN: 1 Lee TROOP AUS 2:14:13 2 Gemechu WOYECHA AUS 2:17:23 3 Scott WINTON NZL 2:18:08 4 Matt DRAVITZKI AUS 2:18:13 5 Tsutomu SAEKI JPN 2:18:18 6 Rowan WALKER AUS 2:20:25 7 Naoto IKUTA JPN 2:22:22 8 Mark JACKSON AUS 2:24:50 9 Brian LIVINGSTON AUS 2:25:54 10 Anthony RICKARDS AUS 2:26:40 WOMEN: 1 Jennifer GILLARD AUS 2:41:06 2 Helen STANTON AUS 2:44:11 3 Melanie BURKE AUS 2:45:27 4 Saori KAWAI JPN 2:47:23 5 Kylie DICK AUS 2:48:51 6 Jenny WICKHAM AUS 2:49:22 7 Eliza MEYGER AUS 2:52:33 8 Belinda DENNETT AUS 2:55:16 9 Glenda BANAGHAN AUS 2:55:52 10 Miki IGARASHI JPN 2:55:59 HALF MARATHON MEN: 1 Martin DENT AUS 1:02:57 2 Kurao UMEKI JPN 1:03:31 3 Yoichi WATANABE JPN 1:04:15 WOMEN 1 Kaoru NISHI JPN 1:11:56 2 Lisa-Jane WEIGHTMAN AUS 1:12:54 3 Junko OCHI JPN 1:13:02 10km Race MEN: 1 Michael SHELLEY AUS 29:52 2 Scott BRITTAIN AUS 31:45 3 Caleb WEGENER AUS 32:22 WOMEN: 1 Kiyomi NIWATA JPN 35:48 2 Ashleigh GENTLE AUS 36:37 3 Jessica GILFILLAN AUS 37:09
MEN: 1 Emil SODERLUND FIN 2:53:37 2 Petri HAARALA FIN 2:54:26 3 Sabre KAUPO FIN 2:55:00 4 Jaakko JARVISTO FIN 2:58:02 5 Heikki KOSO FIN 3:00:49 6 Pekka LEPPANEN FIN 3:00:52 7 Alar SAVASTVER FIN 3:01:30 8 Christian AHLO FIN 3:03:21 9 Jori BRANDER FIN 3:03:46 10 Vesa HYVARINEN FIN 3:04:18 WOMEN: 1 Paulina TOMMOLA FIN 3:09:15 2 Kaarina LILJA FIN 3:21:37 3 Lotta UUSITALO-MALMIVAARA FIN 3:31:03 4 Helena SANTAMAKI FIN 3:31:42 5 Kirsi KAJORANTA-HUUSKO FIN 3:39:13 6 Eila FORSBERG FIN 3:43:54 7 Paivi JUNKAARINEN FIN 3:43:57 8 Paivi TAKALA FIN 3:44:48 9 Mervi LEHTISALO FIN 3:45:06 10 Annika SIVASALMI FIN 3:46:12 HALF MARATHON: MEN: 1 Sergei LUKIN RUS 1:10:49 2 Jaakko KERO FIN 1:11:06 3 Victor DEMITRIEV RUS 1:11:28 WOMEN: 1 Mari KAURI FIN 1:27:53 2 Ruut HEIKINEN FIN 1:31:26 3 Merja KAIKKONEN FIN 1:33:32
After departing from Milan and Rome on 1 July, runners travelled on the overnight Air Namibia flight from Frankfurt to Windhoek, and then transferred 320km to Sossusvlei Lodge. This is the race headquarters, located in an oasis of the Namib Desert, surrounded by towering dunes.
The 32,000 square kilometres of sand desert contains the world's most-filmed dunes. The sand probably originated in the Kalahari Desert, 3-5 million years ago, and was swept to the Atlantic by the Orange River and then northward by the Benguela Current.
3 JULY 2006: STAGE 1, 38km
The first stage was run over a 38km lap course starting and finishing at the Lodge.
MEN: 1 Guiseppe CONSERVA ITA 3:05:59 2 Carlo DE GUILI ITA 3:28:19 3 Luca TURINA ITA 3:28:19 4 Nicola DAL GRANDE ITA 3:28:19 5 Cesare TEPPATI ITA 3:54:53 6 Lourens RADEMEYER NAM 4:05:09 7 Franco ADAGIO ITA 4:24:05 8 Marco BRANCATO ITA 4:32:05 9 Francois LOTTER RSA 4:32:36 10 Andrew KAZEUNDJA NAM 4:37:10 WOMEN: 1 Sharon KOVAR USA 3:52:33 2 Francesca CARRARA ITA 3:57:51 3 Verconica BASSANELLI ITA 4:10:21 4 Esme DU PLESSIS RSA 4:32:32 5 Elena PEDRINI ITA 4:39:22 6 Claudia GERLING GER 4:39:55
4 JULY 2006: STAGE 2, 18km
It was a double shift today in the Namib desert. The morning stage of 18km saw athletes running cautiously, to conserve energy, and to hold on to their positions. The most difficult but spectacular section of the morning stage was along the riverbed in the Sesriem Canyon. The Canyon was formed by the Tsauchab River, which carved a 1km-long gorge, 30m deep, through 15-million year old deposits of sand and gravel conglomerate. Runners had to negotiate the loose rocks of the river bed with great care.
MEN: 1 Guiseppe CONSERVA ITA 1:36:42 2 Nicola DAL GRANDE ITA 1:40:44 3 Carlo DE GIULI ITA 1:40:44 4 Luca TURINA ITA 1:41:54 5 Cesare TEPPATI ITA 1:50:24 6 Lourens RADMEYER NAM 1:54:16 7 Marco BRANCATO ITA 1:54:20 8 Franco ADAGIO ITA 1:55:06 9 Andrew KAZEUNDJA NAM 1:55:56 10 Guiseppe RADAELLI ITA 1:56:07 WOMEN: 1 Sharon KOVAR USA 1:54:16 2 Francesca CARRARA ITA 1:55:26 3 Veronica BASANELLI ITA 2:00:30 4 Elena PEDRINI ITA 2:01:40 5 Esme DU PLESSIS RSA 2:10:04
4 JULY 2006: STAGE 3, 15km
A red sunset escorted runners in the third stage, less demanding but more spectacular due to the hour at which it was run. Starting at 16.15, this is a magical part of the African day, during which the sun is setting and the shadows are extending, while the red rock surroundings are burning with colour. An incredible landscape.
The leading quartet kept their positions at the head of the race. Neither of today's stages was particularly demanding: terrain and underfoot conditions were forgiving. Even so, the distance accumulates and runners have two tough days ahead, with the marathon on stage 4 (42km) and the final day tackling the big dunes.
MEN: 1 Guiseppe CONSERVA ITA 1:10:54 2 Nicola DAL GRANDE ITA 1:11:55 3 Carlo DE GIULI ITA 1:13:05 4 Luca TURINA ITA 1:18:18 5 Cesare TEPPATI ITA 1:22:18 6 Lourens RADMEYER NAM 1:26:51 7 Marco BRANCATO ITA 1:27:45 8 Guiseppe RADAELLI ITA 1:29:07 9 Titziano ZITO ITA 1:33:13 10 Franco ADAGIO ITA 1:35:19 WOMEN: 1 Sharon KOVAR USA 1:26:48 2 Francesca CARRARA ITA 1:29:07 3 Veronica BASANELLI ITA 1:31:48 4 Claudia GERLING GER 1:33:13 5 Elena PEDRINI ITA 1:33:44 6 Esme DU PLESSIS RSA 1:43:10
5 JULY 2006: STAGE 4, 42.2km
A long journey through the least touched parts of the Namib natural park had some dramatic sporting consequences. The beautiful section through the great dunes was very tough, and at the hottest time of day, as temperatures reached 35°C. Those who looked after themselves, taking care to rehydrate, fared best.
There were two particular casualties. Luca Turina suffered stomach problems from the first kilometre and retired at 15km. Women's leader Sharon Kovar dehydrated and slowed to finish 18th overall on this stage and surrender her overall lead to a strong performance from Francesca Carrara.
Tomorrow's last stage goes over the high dunes from Dune 45, by way of the "Crazy Dune", almost 300m high, to the salt pan of Sossusvlei. This year it has flooded, forming a majestic ephemeral lake: nature at its most resplendent.
MEN: 1 Giuseppe CONSERVA ITA 3:27:24 2 Christoph HAIDLEN AUT 3:50:13 3 Nicola DAL GRANDE ITA 3:58:41 4 Carlo DE GIULI ITA 4:02:08 5 Franco ADAGIO ITA 4:05:26 6 Lourens RADEMEYER NAM 4:33:04 7 Cesare TEPPATI ITA 4:52:31 8 Zito Tiziano ZITO ITA 5:22:06 9 Francois LOTTER RSA 5:22:32 10 Marco BRANCATO ITA 5:23:57 WOMEN: 1 Francesca CARRARA ITA 4.33.04 2 Veronica BASSANELLI ITA 4.39.35 3 Elena PEDRINI ITA 5.15.08 4 Esmé DU PLESSIS RSA 5.19.46 5 Claudia GERLING GER 5.22.06 6 Sharon KOVAR USA 6:09:48
6 JULY 2006: STAGE 5, 34km
Ideal conditions concluded the third running of this race: perfect temperatures, no wind and a finish line only a few metres from the Sosussvlei, a vast temporary expanse of water at the edge of the dunes. Insects and water life, as well as oryx and springbok abounded: an extraordinary sight. The final stage departed Dune 45 (45km south-west of Sessriem) under the curious eyes of tourists who had come to visit this most photographed dune in the world.
After the first 15km running along the valley leading towards Sossusvlei runners encountered the most spectacular sights of the entire event. Running over high red sand dunes towards the "Dead vlei", a dry white lake, runners arrived at the foot of the Crazy Dune, almost 300m high, and finished on the narrow band of sand between the dunes and Sossusvlei.
Guiseppe Conserva continued to forge ahead, while Sharon Kovar recuperated well from her troubled third day. At the prize ceremony in the evening the magical atmosphere of the Namibian bush sealed the experience for the participants.
MEN: 1 Giuseppe CONSERVA ITA 2:53:49 2 Carlo DE GIULI ITA 2:59:47 3 Nicola DAL GRANDE ITA 2:59:55 4 Lourens RADEMEYER NAM 3:14:02 5 Franco ADAGIO ITA 3:17:43 6 Christoph HAIDLEN AUT 3:33:04 7 Edgar REICHART AUT 3:33:04 8 Giuseppe RADAELLI ITA 3:34:00 9 Marco BRANCATO ITA 3:40:40 10 Cesare TEPPATI ITA 3:41:36 WOMEN: 1 Francesca CARRARA ITA 3:08:53 2 Veronica BASSANELLI ITA 3:11:49 3 Sharon KOVAR USA 3:16:37 4 Elena PEDRINI ITA 3:38:34 5 Claudia GERLING GER 3:42:00 6 Esmé DU PLESSIS RSA 3:45:40 OVERALL RESULT: MEN: 1 Giuseppe CONSERVA ITA 12:14:48 2 Nicola DAL GRANDE ITA 13:19:34 3 Carlo DE GIULI ITA 13:24:03 4 Lourens RADEMEYER NAM 15:13:26 5 Franco ADAGIO ITA 15:17:39 6 Cesare TEPPATI ITA 15:41:42 7 Christoph HAIDLEN AUT 16:05:19 8 Marco BRANCATO ITA 16:58:47 9 Giuseppe RADAELLI ITA 17:04:30 10 Tiziano ZITO ITA 17:24:44 WOMEN: 1 Francesca CARRARA ITA 15:04:21 2 Veronica BASSANELLI ITA 15:34:03 3 Sharon KOVAR USA 16:40:02 4 Elena PEDRINI ITA 17:08:28 5 Claudia GERLING GER 17:24:44 6 Esmé DU PLESSIS RSA 17:31:13
This race is the supreme alpine racing challenge. It starts in St Niklaus, in the lowest-lying mountain valley in Switzerland (1085m), and ends on Riffelberg by Gornergrat, the highest-altitude finish line in Europe (2585m). Runners face a total climb of 1900m. St Niklaus was the birthplace of many outstanding mountaineers who first conquered the 4000m peaks from this base. Today St. Niklaus makes an ideal starting point for a new generation of intrepid spirits on their way to the top—the marathon runners.
Setting off at 09.50 to fit with the railway timetable, runners follow the left bank of the Vispa River to Zermatt Bahnhofstrasse at the halfway point. Zermatt is the epitome of alpine resort sophistication with its overwhelming view of the world's most glorious mountain—the Matterhorn. The Bahnhofstrasse in cosmopolitan Zermatt marks the athletes' fleeting and final passage through the realm of civilisation before they once again compete with the forces of nature on their long ascent to Sunnegga, through pine forests and alpine pastures. Here runners get a magnificent panoramic view of the Alps and a welcome breather over the comparatively flat terrain that follows.
A glance at the resplendent Matterhorn fortifies runners for their last lap, an arduous ascent from Riffelalp (2222m) up to Riffelberg. Riffelberg, at 2585m, nestles amid 29 4000m summits. An immensity of wild nature lies along this marathon course, awaiting discovery. Come here next year, on 7 July.
In this year's fifth edition of the race Billy Burns returned to take the overall title, seven minutes outside his own course record. Elizabeth Hawker improved the women's record by nearly nine minutes.
The number of runners increased from 650 last year to 996 in this race, representing 22 different countries. Of the 842 finishers there were 581 men, 125 women and 136 male and female relay runners (teams of one man, one woman).
MEN: 1 Billy BURNS GBR 3:11:15 2 Karl JOHL SUI 3:15:19 3 Martin COX SUI 3:16:37 4 Tim SHORT GBR 3:16:55 5 Helmut SCHIESSL GER 3:25:02 6 Jaroslaw JANICKI POL 3:25:50 7 Stefan KLAUSLER SUI 3:27:28 8 Stefan TASSANI-PRELL GER 3:27:55 9 Felix SCHENK SUI 3:29:08 10 Saul PADUA COL 3:30:08 WOMEN: 1 Lizzy HAWKER GBR 3:36:35 2 Britta MULLER GER 3:53:44 3 Julia ALTER GER 3:55:19 4 Claudia LANDOLT SUI 3:56:51 5 Ruth GAVIN-SCHNEIDER SUI 4:01:12 6 Sylke SCHMITZ GER 4:03:42 7 Claire BOLAY SUI 4:08:33 8 Carolina REIBER SUI 4:12:38 9 Silvia HAAB-HERGER SUI 4:13:50 10 Irene SENFTER ITA 4:14:30
The race starts from Viru Gate of Tallinn old town. The first section is along old cobbled streets but from 3km runners are on smooth asphalt going through residential districts until they reach the Pirita recreational area, to the north-east side of town. From here, after the 10km point, runners experience Estonia's natural environment. The course is always close to the Baltic sea and rises no higher than 20m altitude. The turnaround point at Randvere is reached at 27.5km but runners return using a shorter route to finish at the old St Bridget Monastery in Pirita.
MEN: 1 Slawomir SZTEJTER POL 2:43:38 2 Andris DUDELS LAT 2:57:43 3 Jaanus PEDAK EST 3:01:29 4 Rain JANO EST 3:02:02 5 Sulev LIHT EST 3:05:22 6 Mihail SELIVANOVS LAT 3:09:03 7 Hagen WEISSAPFEL GER 3:12:18 8 Holger KELLER GER 3:13:18 9 Aimer PEENSALU EST 3:16:45 10 Aleksei NIKONOV EST 3:17:26 WOMEN: 1 Svetlana IVANOVA LAT 2:50:22 2 Tatjana SOTNIKOVA EST 3:31:16 3 Kaja VALS EST 3:34:01 4 Verena BECKER GER 3:40:10 5 Outi SIVOSAVI FIN 3:48:56 6 Anita WETTER SUI 3:54:00 7 Heidi RIEPL AUT 4:01:06 8 Anneli Vilu LAURITSEN DEN 4:07:36 9 Heike WAGNER GER 4:15:37 10 Tiina ASPELIN FIN 4:16:04 10KM: MEN: 1 Vjacheslav KOSHELEV RUS 31:04 2 Aleksei SAVELJEV EST 32:18 3 Kaupo TIISLAR EST 32:24 WOMEN: 1 Olga ANDREJEVA EST 38:06 2 Galina BERNAT EST 40:31 3 Gerda SCHONBORN GER 46:50
MEN: 1 Jason LOUTITT CAN 2:34:58 2 Ryan DAY 2:45:29 3 Travis SAUNDRS CAN 2:45:59 4 Kevin MORGANS CAN 2:47:53 5 Rob MACKENZIE CAN 2:49:09 6 Brendan LUNTY CAN 2:49:29 7 Tom WALLACE CAN 2:53:30 8 Jack COOK CAN 2:59:47 9 Ed BICKLEY CAN 3:01:19 10 Chris DUSIK CAN 3:01:39 WOMEN: 1 Jody URBANOSKI CAN 3:12:19 2 Sheila CROFT CAN 3:13:27 3 Angela SADLER 3:15:51 4 Amy ANDERSON CAN 3:22:47 5 Carmen PAVELICH CAN 3:23:11 6 Kaila GATFIELD CAN 3:28:31 7 Avery SAUNDERS CAN 3:31:35 8 Diane WALTERS CAN 3:31:51 9 Joylin NODWELL CAN 3:32:02 10 Sheila MCPHERSON CAN 3:32:36 HALF MARATHON: MEN: 1 Abel ONDEYO CAN 1:07:11 2 George TOWETT CAN 1:07:12 3 Mike BOOTH CAN 1:11:00 WOMEN: 1 Emily KROSHUS CAN 1:18:38 2 Pauline GITHUKA CAN 1:20:05 3 Tania JONES CAN 1:20:57
Uli Steidl, resident of of Shoreline, WA has been a perpetual winner of the Seattle Marathon but was bested for the first time in years in the Northwest to finish third behind the Kenyan pair of Joseph Mutinda and Charles Nyamoki. Uli's wife, Trisha Steidl, took first place in the women's race in just under 3 hours.
MEN: 1 Joseph MUTINDA KEN 2:25:24 2 Charles NYAMOKI KEN 2:27:59 3 Uli STEIDL USA 2:28:49 4 Daniel FELDMAN USA 2:36:00 5 Colin FISHWICK USA 2:38:09 6 Clay WING USA 2:44:42 7 Glen WEISSMAN USA 2:45:38 8 Chuck ENGLE USA 2:45:57 9 Alan PRESLEY USA 2:56:34 10 Jeremiah MUSHEN USA 3:00:43 WOMEN: 1 Trisha STEIDL USA 2:59:53 2 Kristin VEAL USA 3:10:21 3 Mary HANNA USA 3:10:49 4 Ann ARMSTRONG USA 3:11:41 5 Michelle KELLEY USA 3:15:25 6 Gayle ZORRILLA USA 3:22:53 7 Carol FINN USA 3:23:56 8 Jennifer YOGI USA 3:27:31 9 Julia ROBINSON USA 3:28:04 10 Amy YANNI USA 3:28:55 HALF MARATHON: MEN: 1 Celedonio RODRIGUEZ USA 1:07:46 2 Mark MANDI USA 1:08:59 3 Dan MCLEAN USA 1:11:07 WOMEN: 1 Michelle LILIENTHAL USA 1:18:33 2 Kelly STRONG USA 1:20:03 3 Lauren MATTHEWS USA 1:21:11
An absolute first was achieved in the 78km race this year (which ascends 2320m) when the fifth-fastest man reached the finishing line as the women's winner was already being interviewed.
The 1011 starters in the "king of marathon distances" faced tough conditions: temperatures were ideal but scattered showers made a few passages very slippery. At the Kesch Hut (2632m), the highest point of the marathon, the wind and cold blew in. Elizabeth Hawker made a lightning start to go into a clear lead early on, and by 30km at Filisur she was already eight minutes ahead of last year's winner Jasmin Nunige. At the Kesch Hut, Hawker had 24 minutes in reserve. With a time of 6:30:12, she not only left most of the men behind but also cut 15:15 minutes off the best time set over five years ago by German series winner Birgit Lennartz. "I'm as surprised by my performance as she is," said the British runner at the end of the race.
A new name also decorates the top of the ranking list for the men's 78km field. In contrast to Hawker, Giorgio Calcaterra had already come third in one Swiss Alpine Marathon Davos (42km). The 34-year-old from Rome is only the second Italian to win the 78km classic through the mountains of Graubunden. He follows Mario Fattore, who triumphed two years ago, was forced to retire last year because of injury, and this year came in seventh. On Saturday, Calcaterra shared the podium with two runners with rather unusual occupations: Alpine herdsman Moritz Boschung from Plaffeien (Freiburg) and Vaduz-based vicar Markus Kellenberger from Solothurn.
MEN: 1 Giorgio CALCATERRA ITA 6:05:04 2 Moritz BOSCHUNG SUI 6:06:46 3 Markus KELLENBERGER LIE 6:25:38 4 Christian STORK GER 6:28:39 5 Helge BABEL SUI 6:34:43 6 Stefano SARTORE ITA 6:35:47 7 Mariio FATTORE ITA 6:40:00 8 Felix VON WITSCH GER 6:43:09 9 Martin BELSER SUI 6:46:04 10 Felix SCHENK SUI 6:47:02 WOMEN: 1 Elizabeth HAWKER GBR 6:30:12 2 Elke HIEBL GER 7:07:32 3 Maria BAK GER 7:17:40 4 Jasmin NUNIGE SUI 7:21:03 5 Rafaela FREY SUI 7:41:27 6 Monica CARLIN ITA 7:47:58 7 Gaby MERKOFER SUI 7:52:29 8 Denise ZIMMERMANN SUI 7:57:14 9 Deborah BALZ SUI 8:01:33 10 Resi ZEPF GER 8:03:00 42km: MEN: 1 Anssi RAITTILA FIN 3:25:09 2 Stephen SPIESS SUI 3:40:10 3 Hans SCHULER SUI 3:40:35 WOMEN: 1 Carolina REIBER AUS 3:44:48 2 Eroica SPIESS SUI 3:59:51 3 Diana LEHMANN GER 4:00:34
Photos: Victah Sailer
World half marathon champion Fabiano Joseph, a true specialist at the distance, won in a course record time writes Dave Keuhls. Joseph had 1:00:22 performer James Kwambai to contend with, as well as the 2600m altitude of the Colombian capital. It was a marathon specialist, Catherine Ndereba, who won the women's race with relative ease despite cramping in the final stages.
Under bright and sunny skies (20°C) Joseph led from the start and at 3km he headed Kwambai and Isaac Macharia. Kwambai made a move at 7km, having previously promised to improve his 1:03:10 performance of last year. Macharia dropped back and the lead pair passed 10km in 28:58 as all of Bogota seemed to be screaming at them from the sidelines.
Kwambai fulfilled his promise by improving his previous time by five seconds, but at 13km Joseph accelerated smoothly away for a convincing win. He will make his marathon debut in Amsterdam on 15 October.
Joseph remarked upon the warm conditions and they may have accounted for the calf cramps which twice forced Ndereba to stop in the final 4km. Despite being way off Susan Chepkemei's 1:10:29 course record she still managed a decisive win.
The elite races were supported by other mass races which in total mobilised around 45,000 participants.
MEN: 1 Fabiano JOSEPH TAN 1:02:34 2 James KWAMBAI KEN 1:03:05 3 Isaac MACHARIA KEN 1:04:03 4 Araya HAREGOT ETH 1:05:36 5 Paulo ALVES BRA 1:05:55 6 Jaun DIEGO CONTRERAS PER 1:06:26 7 Samson RAMADHAN TAN 1:06:30 8 Silvio GUERRA ECU 1:06:41 WOMEN: 1 Catherine NDEREBA KEN 1:12:56 2 Lucy MUHAMI KEN 1:14:07 3 Dulce RODRIGUEZ MEX 1:16:18 4 Stella CASTRO COL 1:17:21 5 Galina ALEXANDROVA RUS 1:18:49 6 Yolanda FERNANDEZ COL 1:18:53 7 Martha RONCERA COL 1:19:21 8 Shewarge AMARA ETH 1:20:01
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