Roads

KIPRONO AND WACERA LEAD KENYAN SWEEP AT BLOOMSDAY

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Spokane, Washington—Last year a pair of Ethiopians—Belete Assefa and Buzunesh Deba—captured the men's and women's crowns at the Lilac Bloomsday Run, marking the first time in history that the champions both hailed from that east African county. This year, though, it was that other east African powerhouse showing up in force, as Kenyans led a sweep of both divisions, Allan Kiprono returning to the victor's stand after a one-year absence, and  Mary Wacera notching her first Bloomsday win.

A field of 49,094 signed up for this year's Bloomsday, the number reduced somewhat by chilly conditions in the days leading up to race day, as well as a forecast of thunderstorms for during the race. The storms arrived all right, but several hours ahead of time, and conditions for the women's elite start at 8:45 were dry, although with a breezy headwind for sections of the race. Those winds led to a slow first mile of 5:27, with a large pack huddled together down the first hill. As the pack reached the bottom and began up the first uphill at mile 1-1/2, three-time champion Lineth Chepkurui (2008-2010) came to the front and began pushing the pace.

That move began whittling the pack, and by the top of Cemetery Hill at the three-mile mark only seven were still in contention, with Chepkurui still in the lead. A mile later the 2013 AJC Peachtree and Utica Boilermaker champion, who holds the Bloomsday course record, was still in the lead, with only Kenyans Risper Gesawbwa and Mary Wacera holding on. The threesome was still intact at the bottom of Doomsday Hill, but by the five-mile mark at the top Chepkurui had gapped the others to take a 10-meter lead.

Abraham Cheroben and Janet Rono clock world leading times in BIG 25 Berlin

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Kenyans Abraham Cheroben and Janet Rono won the BIG 25 Berlin with world leading times. It was Cheroben who produced the performance of the day. The 21 year-old clocked 1:11:47, which is the fourth fastest time ever run at 25 k. Fellow Kenyan Kenneth Kipkemoi was second with 1:12:32 while Ethiopia’s Tebalu Zawude crossed the finish line inside the Berlin Olympic Stadium in 1:13:09 for third place. Janet Rono was well ahead in the women’s race which she won with 1:24:37. Valentine Kibet of Kenya took second in 1:26:18 while third placed Maja Neuenschwander broke the Swiss record with a time of 1:27:01. Adding other running events a total of 11,050 athletes took part in the 34th edition of the BIG 25 Berlin.

There was a minute of silence before the start in honour of the former president of the Berlin and German sports associations (LSB and DSB), Manfred von Richthofen, who died on Thursday. Once the runners got off in dry but cool conditions with temperatures between 8 and 11 Celsius a very fast men’s race developed. A group of nine runners passed the 5 k mark in 14:00 and then reached 10 k in 28:20. With some tailwind during this first section of the race the split times were faster than expected and even pointed towards the world record time. This mark of 1:11:18 was established by Kenya’s Dennis Kimetto in the BIG 25 Berlin two years ago.

TWO NEW CHAMPIONS TO BE CROWNED AT BLOOMSDAY, Cherobon-Bawcom Withdraws Due to Foot Injury

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Spokane, Washington—Last year's Bloomsday champion, Belete Assefa, won't be returning this spring, but 2011 champion Simon Ndirangu will, and so will 2012 winner Allan Kiprono, together with a talented group of international stars who have their sights set on the Bloomsday crown. And in the women's race, last year's champion Buzunesh Deba will pass on defending her crown as she recovers from a blistering 2:19:59 runner up performance at the recent Boston Marathon. Her absence will open the way for a new champion from among a talented women's field, one of the strongest in Bloomsday history.

Kiprono and Ndirangu own two of the fastest times ever run on the Bloomsday course, but it may well be a newcomer, Ethiopian Mosinet Geremew, who escapes the pack and races to victory on Sunday. Geremew, only 22 years old, was the surprise winner of last summer's AJC Peachtree Road Race in Atlanta, and has a 59:54 half marathon to his credit this year. If he wins Bloomsday, he will become only the second Ethiopian male to win here, following Assefa's victory in 2013.

Politicians and Media Try to Put Best Foot Forward in Election Year

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The ACLI Capital Challenge three mile road race returns to Washington, D.C.’s Anacostia Park on Wednesday, May 21 at 8:00 a.m. Who will cross the finish line first and run off with team honors─an unknown known? The event attracts scores of members of Congress, high-ranking political appointees, Generals, Admirals, television correspondents, print and web reporters, Federal Judges and other Washington VIPs, who will compete on over 140 teams.

Known for its irreverence and political humor, the race is drawing the usual VIP cast. Teams are captained by U.S. Senators, Representatives, Cabinet Members, Sub-Cabinet appointees, Federal Judges, On-Air personalities and professional print and web journalists. Each captain must finish for his or her team to score. The race, which started in 1981, spotlights the fitness of many of the country’s busiest leaders, including many Senate and House Committee Chairs and ranking members.

The ACLI Capital Challenge benefits the Fidelco Guide Dog Foundation. All entry fees and additional donations from the race sponsors will be used to provide a life-changing Fidelco Guide Dog and services to a blinded veteran or immediate family member to support increased independence, mobility and safety.

FLASH – Jeptoo breaks course record while Keflezighi ends US drought in Boston

Written by IAAF.

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The thousands of spectators who lined the streets for the Boston Marathon on Monday (21) were treated to two of the greatest races in the event’s 118-year history. Rita Jeptoo broke the course record in one of the fastest races ever, while Meb Keflezighi became the first US winner since 1985 of the IAAF Gold Label Road Race.

For the first half of the race, it looked as though there could have been two US winners as Shalane Flanagan led for much of the way in the women’s race. She eventually surrendered her lead after about 33km as defending champion Jeptoo forged ahead along with fellow Kenyan Jemima Sumgong and Ethiopian trio Mare Dibaba, Meselech Melkamu and Bezunesh Deba.

After a 15:44 5km split between 35km and 40km, Jeptoo was alone out in front and went on to cross the finish line in 2:18:57, moving to fifth on the world all-time list. She improved the course record by almost two minutes, smashing the mark of 2:20:43 set 12 years ago by compatriot Margaret Okayo.