Ethiopia claim men’s and women’s titles at Cape Town Marathon
Sep 18th, 2017 Video360 521 Views
CAPE TOWN: Ethiopian Asefa Mengstu Negewu came back to the marathon that launched him onto the international stage in 2016 and destroyed a quality field to successfully defend his SANLAM Cape Town Marathon title in almost perfect weather conditions on Sunday.
Running in a lead pack of six athletes that included Ketema Bekele Negasa, race favourite Laban Mutai, Duncan Maiyo and South Africa’s Xolisa Tyali, Negewu went through 10km in 30:18, some 13 seconds behind pacemaker Henry Kiplagat.
Kiplagat proceeded to pour on the pace and by halfway had extended his lead to 34 seconds over the chasing pack. Kiplagat went through to the half marathon mark in 1:04.29 with the pack clocking 1:05.03.
By 30km, the pack was chasing down Kiplagat and had whittled his lead down to nine seconds with Negewu driving the bus. At 35km, Negewu threw down the gauntlet and pulled away from his rivals to cross the line in 2:10.01
Second was countryman Ketema Negessa (2:11.06) with Duncan Maiyo of Kenya taking third (2:11.26)Elroy Gelant in his debut marathon, was the best of the South Africans. Running a conservative race, Gelant stayed off the leaders until the 30km mark before he tried to close the gap. In the end though, running alone for a longer period of time cost him and slowed him down in the latter stages of the race. Nevertheless his 2:12.49 was good enough for fifth overall.
The women’s race saw some drama as pacemaker Helalia Johannes went out at a blistering pace, dropping the main protagonists by the halfway mark, reached in 1:15.22. Strung out behind her were all the race favourites some 38 seconds adrift. Running comfortably in that chase pack were Meserey Asefan, Ethiopian Betelhem Moges, Fantu Jimma and Agnes Kiprop amongst others. South Africa’s Irvette van Zyl, content to sit roughly a minute further down. Video by: Phandulwazi Njikelo/ ANA Pictures