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Edna battle against Gladys and Dibaba in Berlin

The Women race at Berlin is one to watch out for, in addition to Eliud Kipchoge and Wilson Kipsang battling it out for the World Record at Berlin, thou all eyes are on Kipchoge considering his winning form in the recent past while Kipsang looks at getting his winning thirst quenched after some not-so-good two year past.

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Three-time women’s AbbottWMM series champion Edna Kiplagat will become a Six Star Finisher at the 2018 BMW Berlin Marathon this September.

The Kenyan two-time world champion will become the first female elite able-bodied athlete to earn the famous Six Star Medal if she crosses the finish line in the German capital today, adding yet another achievement to a glittering marathon-running career.

Kiplagat, 38, began her AbbottWMM odyssey with victory in the 2010 TCS New York City Marathon and followed that with second place at the Virgin Money London Marathon in April 2011. She then clinched world gold in Daegu in 2011 and another second in London in 2012, where she set her PB of 2:19:50.

She was second again in the UK capital in 2013 and then added a second straight world title with gold in Moscow that same year.

Kiplagat finally cracked the top step of London’s podium in 2014 with victory on The Mall.

Two more podiums (third in Tokyo and second at the Bank of America Chicago Marathon) in 2016 continued a stunning string of AbbottWMM performances, topped by a win in Boston in 2017.

Later that year her form carried her to second in the London World Championships, and she now has her sights trained on the podium in the shadow of the Brandenburg Gate on September 16.

But she will face stiff competition in the form of Ethiopia’s Tirunesh Dibaba. The reigning Chicago champion will be making her Berlin debut and hoping to get her Series XII campaign off to a successful start. Dibaba finished second behind Mary Keitany in Series XI after a tough day at the office at the 2018 Virgin Money London Marathon where she did not register a finish.

The 32-year-old has won three gold medals at consecutive Olympic Games (2008 and 2012) and five World Championships from 2003 to 2013. For good measure, Dibaba has also four World Cross Country titles to her credit.

Her personal best is 2:17:56, set in finishing second at the 2017 Virgin Money London Marathon which makes her the third fastest woman in the history of the marathon.

The 35-year-old Gladys Cherono from Kenya also lines up to defend the title she won in 2017.

Gladys Cherono is the only runner to have broken 2:20, four of her rivals have gone under 2:25: the Ethiopians Amane Beriso (2:20:48), Gulume Tollesa (2:23:12) and Ruti Aga (2:24:41) as well as the Kenyan Valary Aiyabei (2:21:57). “It’s the norm that leading women runners come to Berlin in order to run fast and have the best chance of setting personal bests. So we can reckon with a pace on schedule for breaking 2:20 on Sunday. It could even be the kind of pace to threaten the course record,” said race director Mark Milde.

Gladys Cherono wants to show she is back to her best by producing a world-class time at the BMW BERLIN-MARATHON. “I’ve come to Berlin to attack my personal best,” said Cherono. The 34-year-old Kenyan achieved the fastest marathon time anywhere in the world since April 2012 with the performance she produced in Berlin in 2015. But a lengthy period of injury in the spring of 2016 put paid to chances of going to the Olympics. “I couldn’t run a marathon in 2016 because I had a stress fracture and feared I might never regain top form. But now everything is ok,” said Gladys Cherono.

Another Kenyan who plans for a very fast race is Valary Aiyabei. The 26 year-old had a breakthrough performance in Prague this spring. She improved by almost three minutes to 2:21:57 after running the first part of the race at world record pace. It was the third marathon win in a row for Valary Aiyabai, who recorded first places in Barcelona and Valencia in 2016. „My aim is to equal the time I ran in Prague, but I hope for a personal best. My husband, who is also my coach, will pace me on Sunday. He is my everything,” said Valary Aiyabei.

Vivian Cheruiyot Vs Joyciline and Saina Affair

Olympic and World champion Vivian Cheruiyot will return to Tyneside as she bids to make it two Simplyhealth Great North Run victories in three years, it has been announced.

The four-time Olympic and five-time World Championship medallist won the world’s biggest half marathon on her debut over the distance in 2016, and finished second to winner Mary Keitany last year.

She said: “I am looking forward to returning to England for the Simplyhealth Great North Run.

“It was a magnificent race when I won here for the first time in 2016 and I want to be on top of that podium again next month.”

Also in the elite list is the fastest ever woman over the half marathon will be looking to spoil Vivian Cheruiyot’s plans to make it two Simplyhealth Great North Run wins in three years on Sunday.

Joyciline Jepkosgei, the world record holder over the half marathon, has been added to the field for the world’s biggest half marathon this weekend and will be the main competition for Olympic champion Cheruiyot in the iconic race.

Kenyan Jepkosgei clocked her record time of 64.51 in the Prague Half Marathon last year where she also broke the world 10KM, 15KM and 20KM records.

She went on to beat her own 10KM world record time back in Prague three months later when she clocked 29.43 to become the first woman to ever break 30 minutes over 10KM.

Betsy Saina, who finished fifth in last year’s race which was won by Mary Keitany, will also be in contention, with British hopes lying with Lily Partridge, Gemma Steel, Charlotte Purdue and Sunderland athlete Aly Dixon.

Lorna Kiplagat’s threepeat revisited at Falmouth Road Race

Canadian Ben Flanagan pulled away from the pack in the last mile to win the Falmouth Road race on Sunday, becoming the first man from North America to win the race in 30 years. Last year’s winner Stephen Sambu finished fourth.

Caroline Chepkoech of Kenya took the women’s race, her third straight win at Falmouth. The 24 year old took charge in the third mile and surged to a five-second win over fellow Kenyan Margaret Wangari. Mary Wacera, also from Kenya, was third in 37:17. Chepkoech is the first female runner to threepeat since Lornah Kiplagat in 2002.

Here are the top ten finishers in each category.

MEN

1. Ben Flanagan, 32:21

2. Scott Fauble, 32:23

3. Leonard Korir, 32:28

4. Stephen Sambu, 32:32

5. Martin Hehir, 32:38

6. Haron Lagat, 32:43

7. Colin Bennie, 32:49

8. Tim Ritchie, 32:50

9. Andrew Colley, 32:53

10. Ross Millington, 32:56

WOMEN

1. Caroline Chepkoech, 35:48

2. Margaret Wangari, 36:43

3. Mary Wacera, 37:17

4. Buze Diriba, 38:03

5. Melissa Dock, 38:04

6. Rosie Donegan, 38:07

7. Emily Durgin, 38:09

8. Erica Kemp, 38:13

9. Kim Conley, 38:16

10. Elaina Tabb, 38:18

Kenya Names World Under-20 Team

World Under-18 team graduated to the junior ranks in style by making it to the Tampere-bound side.
They include Samson Ndingiti (walk race-bronze), Mary Moraa (400m-silver) and Moitalel Mpoke (400m hurdles-silver).

Leonard Bett (2,000m steeplechase), Jackline Wambui (800m), George Manangoi (1,500m) and Caren Chebet (2,000m steeplechase) also made it alongside Edward Zakayo and Stanley Waithaka, who won silver and bronze in 3,000m and Lydia Jeruto, the World Under-18 800m silver medallist.
Also in the team in the only field event is men’s triple jump athlete Philip Musyoka.
Primary school pupils Zena Jemutai (South Rift) and Mercy Chepkorir (South Rift) claimed the two tickets.
Jemutai clocked 9:06.92 beating Chepkorir to second in 9:06.96.
Chepkirui attributed her dismal performance to lack of training, having just recovered from a hamstring injury, while Jemutai, a class seven pupil at Keringet Boarding Primary School, said good training back at home did the trick.

“The battle was tight but my joy is that I made it. I won’t just go to Tampere to add on the numbers, I am targeting a medal,” said Moraa, a Form four student at Mogonga High School.
Mpoke timed 50.87 to prevail in the men’s 400m hurdles, as James Mucheru (Nairobi) clocked 51.23 for second place to all book their tickets.
Zakayo, the Commonwealth 5,000m bronze medallist, and Waithaka, the National Cross Country Under-20 champion, strutted to a 1-2 finish in 13:19.74 and 13:23.67 in the men’s 5,000m to earn their berths.

“We have no choice but to maintain our steeplechase reign in Tampere,” said Bett.

“Winning at home shows that I’m in good shape and I will be going for nothing short of victory.”

Ndingiti, the World Under-18 10,000m race walk bronze medallist, clocked 42:03.30 to win his event and qualify, as Moraa timed 54.94 seconds to triumph, beating the qualifying standard time of 55.00 seconds.
Moraa will be the sole Kenyan in the race after second-placed Grace Nyakai (Central), who timed 56.75, failed to qualify.

“The battle was tight but my joy is that I made it. I won’t just go to Tampere to add on the numbers, I am targeting a medal,” said Moraa, a Form four student at Mogonga High School

“I happy I will be defending my title in Tampere. Since winning the title in 2016, I have gained enough experience that will enable defend my title,” said Chespol.

Mary Keitany Wins New York Mini 10K

Mary Keitany continued her reign as the queen of Central Park with a dominating victory at the NYRR New York Mini 10K here this morning.

The 36-year-old Kenyan cruised to her second straight title (and third overall) in the all-women’s race, clocking 30:59 and winning by more than a minute on a spectacular morning with comfortable temperatures (68F/20C) and relatively low humidity. Combined with her three wins in the TCS New York City Marathon, which finishes over the same climb through the park as today’s event, Keitany has earned a formidable reputation in the Big Apple

She recorded the fifth-best time in event history, and she covered the uphill second half in an incredible 15:08.

“At the beginning we were slow and so I started to push from 3 miles, because I wanted to see what time I could do,” said the winner, who had a disappointing fourth-place finish in April’s London Marathon. “I’ve been training well since London, and I really wanted to make up for that here in New York.”

Her time of 30 minutes, 59 seconds was the fifth fastest in the event’s 47-year history.

Keitany, a three-time New York City Marathon champion, was followed by two Americans — Aliphine Tuliamuk in 32:08 and Molly Huddle in 32:25. Boston Marathon champion Des Linden was 14th in 35:12, with Boston runner-up Sarah Sellers 17th in 35:29.

Helen Obiri Third Straight Win

World 5000m Champion Hellen Obiri posted her third straight win as the 39th Kenya Defence Championships got underway at Kasarani Stadium yesterday.

She announced her intentions to represent Kenya at the Africa Senior Athletics Championships (in Asaba, Nigeria) and pick a slot in the team to IAAF Continental Cup that run in Ostrava, Czech Republic on September 8-9. The Continental Cup is the only silverware missing out from Obiri’s trophy cabinet.

Obiri, the Olympic silver medalist, stormed into the lead in the fifth lap, opening 200m gap before strolling to victory in 14:48.5. Joyline Koima of Mtongwe (15:03.6) came second ahead of Kahawa’s Gladys Kimana (15:06.8).

Thika’s Peninnah Kandia (15:16.2) returned fourth while world cross country veteran Innes Chenonge (15:19.5) of Moi Air Base checked in fifth.

“I am happy to have defended my title today. I did not perform well in the last two Diamond League meetings. I have been feeling too tired. I want to make the team to Africa Senior Athletics Championships and then head to Continental Cup in Ostrava,” said 28-year-old Obiri.

She added: “It will be my second time if I make it to the Continental Cup. I competed in 2014 in 1500m and finished fourth in 1,500m.”

In men’s 400m hurdles semi-finals, Olympic silver medalist Boniface Mucheru booked a place in tomorrow’s finals alongside reigning national champion Willy Mbevi who registered 51.6 seconds.

Mucheru, who clocked 52.1 seconds, will not defend his Africa title he won in Durban two years ago: “I have not recovered fully from the hamstring injury I picked two years ago. It’s unfortunate I will not feature in the Africa Senior Athletics Championships. I have been advised not rush into competitive races.”

In 5000m, 2014 Commonwealth Games Champion James Magut sailed into 1,500m finals after clocking 3:47.1. Collins Koros came second in 3:47.4 while Dennis Kilele finished third in 3:47.7. In the other semis Charles Simotwo won in 3:54.4 ahead of Lawi Kosgei (3:54.7).

Cc Standard Sports Kenya