Report17 Mar 2019

Road round-up: Cheruyiot smashes course record at Lisbon half, Kiplagat and Mokonin take convincing victories at Seoul Marathon


Vivian Cheruiyot takes a dominating victory at the Lisbon Half (© Organizers)

Last updated: 17 March, 19:25 CET


Cheruyiot smashes course record at Lisbon half

Living up to pre-race expectations, Vivian Cheruyiot shattered the course record at the EDP Lisbon Half Marathon, an IAAF Gold Label Race, on Sunday (17). In the men's race, won by Ethiopian Mosinet Geremew, 14 runners finished in under 1:01.

On an almost perfect day with just some slight winds for the runners to contend with, Cheruyiot (marathon world rank: 3), the 2016 Olympic 5000m champion, ran on her own from the 10km point en route to her 1:06:34 victory. The 35-year-old Kenyan improved her personal best, a 1:07:43 performance set at last year's Great North Run, by more than a minute.

At Friday's pre-race press conference, Cheruyiot promised to mount an assault on her personal best - and she followed through.

"It was a good race for me," she said. "Only the strong wind made me run slower. I raced to beat my personal best, and I’m happy. It was a great test the London Marathon, next month."

The previous record (on this flat course) was 1:08:22 set by Kenyan Rose Chelimo in 2015.

Ethiopian Zeineba Yimer (road running world rank: 13) was second, more than a minute after the winner in 01:08:07. Debutante Sandra Tuei Felis (road running world rank: 41) rounded out the podium in 1:08.14 with countrywoman Linet Masai (marathon world rank: 93) further back, clocking 1:08:51 for fourth, and another Kenyan debutante, Caroline Chepkemoi (road running world rank: 124), next in 1:09:13.

In a thrilling sprint finish, Swede Meraf Bahta (road running world rank: 44; 10,000m: 10), also making her half marathon debut, edged Portugal's Sara Moreira, both credited with 1:12:09.


Mosinet Geremew collects a convincing victory at the Lisbon Half Marathon


The men’s race was different, with a strong group of 14 still in contention until the 15th kilometre. The action began after that; three kilometres later Geremew (marathon world rank: 4) broke away and took the lead for good en route to his victory in 59:37, not far off of his 59:11 personal best set in 2014.

"I’m not in the best shape and I didn’t run well," Geremew offered. "Even so I’m happy with this win, a perfect test for my race in the London Marathon in April. 

He was the first of 14 men to reach the line in under 61 minutes. His compatriot Berehanu Wendim Tsegu was second in 59:42, an impressive debut. Kenyan Isaac Temoi was third in 59:44, also a personal best.

Eritrean Abrar Osman (road running world rank: 57) finished just off the podium, clipping 32 seconds from his PB to finish fourth in 59:47.

António Manuel Fernandes for the IAAF

Leading results:
Men -
1 Mosinet Geremew, ETH, 59:37
2 Berehanu Wendemu Tsegu, ETH, 59:42 PB
3 Isaac Kipsang Temoi, KEN, 59:44 PB
4 Abrar Osman, ERI, 59:47 PB
5 Kelvin Kiptum Cheruiyot, KEN, 59:54
6 Edwin Kiptoo, KEN, 59:58
7 John Loitang, KEN, 01:00:09 PB
8 Bernard Kimani, KEN, 01:00:11
9 Simon Cheprot, KEN, 01:00:12
10 Nicholas Kosimbei, KEN, 01:00:21 =PB
Women -
1 Vivian Cheruiyot, KEN, 01:06:34
2 Zeineba Yimer, ETH, 01:08:07
3 Sandra Tuei Felis, KEN, 01:08:14
4 Linet Masai, KEN, 01:08:51
5 Caroline Chepkemoi, KEN, 01:09:13
6 Meraf Bahta, SWE, 01:12:09
7 Sara Moreira, POR, 01:12:09
8 Jéssica Augusto, POR, 01:13:07
9 Elena Loyo, ESP, 01:15:36
10 Monika Bytautiene, LTU, 01:16:01


Jepkosgei and unheralded Tilahun race to NYC Half Marathon wins

Joyciline Jepkosgei and unheralded Belay Tilahun of Ethiopia won their New York City racing debuts at the 2019 United Airlines NYC Half on Sunday (17).


Joyciline Jepkosgei victorious at the New York City Half


Jepkosgei, the half marathon world record-holder, won her first-ever race in the United States on a solo run to the finish in a time of 1:10:07. The world championship silver medallist in the distance became the sixth woman from Kenya to win the event, and the first to do so since 2014.

“This season I am preparing to debut in the marathon, and this was a great half marathon to see how my body feels,” Jepkosgei said.

Fellow Kenyan Mary Ngugi came through the finish line one minute later in 1:11:07 to take second place, 15-hundredths of a second ahead of last year’s champion, Ethiopia’s Buze Diriba.

Tilahun, a 24-year-old member of West Side Runners, recorded his surprise victory in a time of 1:02:10 with an exciting kick through the final two miles.


Belay Tilahun takes a surprise victory at the New York City Half


“I was feeling quite cold at the beginning, but as I was warming up, I began to feel better. After about 15 kilometre, I was confident that I could win. So I used the finishing kick that I had to win,” Tilahun said.

Eritrea’s Daniel Mesfun finished second in 1:02:16 after leading for the majority of the race, while U.S. Olympic silver medallist Paul Chelimo took third in 1:02:19 in his half-marathon debut.

Organisers for the IAAF


Kiplagat and Mokonin take convincing victories at Seoul Marathon

Kenyan Thomas Kiplagat Rono of Kenya and Desi Jisa Mokonin of Bahrain took convincing victories at the Seoul Marathon, an IAAF Gold Label road race, on Sunday (17). 

Kiplagat (marathon world ranking: 162) led four men under the 2:07 mark, clocking 2:06:00 to win his third career marathon. The 32-year-old knocked nearly two minutes from his previous lifetime best of 2:07:52 set at the 2014 edition of the Joongang Marathon, Seoul's annual autumn marathon.

Elisha Kipchirchir Rotich (marathon world ranking: 101) was second in 2:06:12, a massive improvement on his previous best of 2:07:32, set when winning the Eindhoven Marathon last October.

Mike Kiptum Boit (marathon world ranking: 230) rounded out the podium sweep for Kenya, clocking 2:06:24 to beat Ethiopian Fikre Bekele who clocked 2:06:27, career bests for both.

In a quality race, Robert Kiplimo Kipkemboi (marathon world ranking: 205) crossed the line in 2:07:11 to round out the top five. 

Mokonin (marathon world ranking: 63), who was seventh at the IAAF World Half Marathon Champpionships Valencia 2018, was even more dominant, winning by 25 seconds in 2:23:45, just six seconds shy of the personal best she set in Amsterdam last October. This was the first victory in four starts over the distance for the 21-year-old.

Hirut Tibebu (marathon world ranking: 19), the winner here last year, was second this time around in 2:24:10.

Kenyan Celestine Chepchirchir (marathon world ranking: 93) was third in 2:24:49, a lifetime best for the 29-year-old. Zinash Mekonen (marathon world ranking: 121) of Ethiopia clocked 2:25:44 to round out the top four.

The men's course record of 2:05:13 was set by Kenyan Wilson Loyanae Erupe in 2016. Zhou Chunxia women's course record of 2:19:51 has stood since 2006.

Bob Ramsak for the IAAF

Leading results:
1. Thomas Kiplagat Rono, KEN, 2:06:00
2. Elisha Kipchirchir Rotich, KEN, 2:06:12
3. Mike Kiptum Boit, KEN, 2:06:24
4. Fikre Bekele Tefera, ETH, 2:06:27
5. Robert Kiplimo Kipkemboi, KEN, 2:07:11
6. Tariku Kinfu, ETH, 2:09:06
7. Sammy Kitwara, KEN 2:09:52
1. Desi Jisa Mokonin, BRN, 2:23:45
2. Hirut Tibebu Damte, ETH, 2:24:10
3. Celestine Chepchirchir, KEN, 2:24:49
4. Zinash Mekonen Lema, ETH, 2:25:44
5. Mercy Jerotich Kibarus, KEN, 2:27:20
6. Ahn Seul-Ki, KOR, 2:26:28
7. Merima Mohamed, BRN, 2:27:34


Race records tumble in New Taipei City

Kenyans Mathew Kipsaat and Naomi Jepkogei Maiyo ran to race record performances at the New Taipei City Wan Jin Shi Marathon, an IAAF Silver Label road race, on Sunday (17).


Mathew Kipsaat wins in New Taipei City


Kipsaat (marathon world rank: 224) ran comfortably in a four-man lead pack until the 29th kilometre when he decided to forge on alone en route to a 2:11:17 victory to smash the previous race record of 2:13:05 set by William Chebon Chebor in 2016.

“I feel very happy to break the record,” said Kipsaat, who added the win here to his victory at the 2017 Las Palmas Marathon. I hope I will be invited back next year, and I will keep improving my time.” His personal best is 2:09:19, set at the 2017 Rome Marathon.

Kipsaat ran well, building an 18-second lead by the 30th kilometre, extending it to more than a minute by kilometre 35 and to more than two minutes by kilometre 40.

Philip Cheruiyot Kangogo (marathon world rank: 299) was a distant second in 2:13:57 with Alex Chepkwik Saekwo (marathon world rank: 241) clocking 2:15:18.

In the women’s race, Maiyo (marathon world rank: 236) was more patient.


Naomi Jepkogei Maiyo takes the New Taipei City marathon title


A lead group of five reached the midway point in 1:16:58, with Maiyo finally making her decisive move after the 35th kilometre. She was 38 seconds clear of Meseret Sisay (marathon world rank: 315) by kilometre 40 and added to it over the waning stages before crossing the line in 2:34:08 to clip 45 seconds from the previous course record.

“I prepared to run good before the race, but didn’t expect to break record,” said Maiyo, who set her lifetime best of 2:31:31 in Cape Town in 2017.

Sisay was second in 2:34:51 with Ednah Mukhwana (marathon world rank: 211) third clocking 2:35:01.

Organisers for the IAAF