21st BERLIN HALFMARATHON
World Best Time of the year by Fabian Roncero
2001-04-01The 21st BERLIN HALFMARATHON, for a long time only the "small brother" of the BERLIN-MARATHON, steadily becomes the "Big Brother" and a competitior with a look at the number of participants and the quality of the runners finisher times.
There have never been before this much entrants: 11.655 participants from 53 countries had been at the starting line at the Fernsehtum in the Karl-Marx-Allee, surrounded by good weather conditions. The mayor of Berlin-Mitte, Joachim Zeller and German 5.000 m participant of the Olympic Games 2000 in Sydney, Jirka Arndt, sent the runners and inline skaters on their 21.0975 km long Berlin sightseeing tour.
Fabian Roncero from Spain won the race with a terrific new world best time of the year in 59:52. This might become a new European record as the the current record of 59:43 by Antoni Pinto (POR) from 1998 in Lissabon had been established on a course with a big slope. The results of Titus Munji (KEN) 1:00:27 and Rodgers Rop (KEN) 1:00:57 are excellent times as well.
Third victory in a row was made by the third of the Olympic Marathon race 2000 in Sydney, Joyce Chepchumba (KEN). Again she won in a terrific time of 1:09:37, followed by the local hero Kathrin Wessel (SCC) who did a 1:11:09 and Dorotea Gruca (POL) in 1:11:56.
An oddity in the wheelchair competition: For the first time a woman won the race and outshone the male participants. Yvonne Sehmisch of the LC Cottbus raced a great 58:46, Robby Krannich (SCC) was the first male in 1:06:24.
The third race record was established by the Inline Speedskaters by name of Steven Madsen (DEN) who also won last years BERLIN HALFMARATHON and who, with a chiptime of 34:36 has been two minutes faster that in the last year. The three following skaters had a time of 34:37.
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