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News Archive

A record 9,426 participants tackling the AVON RUNNING women’s race in Berlin

The turn-out was massive. Nobody had expected an increase of such magnitude in

the number of participants for the 19th AVON RUNNING women’s race

organised by SCC Berlin.

A total of 9,426 runners from 24 nations meant that last year’s

figures were exceeded by far. Despite rainy weather and a simultaneously held

large demonstration which coincided with parts of the course on its way towards

Brandenburger Tor, all of the nearly 10,000 female athletes demonstrated their

own kind of women’s power showing that female running is strongly gaining

ground.

Back in 1984, the SCC event organisers started their joint venture with

AVON, attracting 645 female runners. Now they have all but arrived at a

five-digit figure, staging Germany’s biggest single sports event for

women – a dream come true. 3.,365 women competed over the 10 kilometre

distance, while 5,489 opted for the 5k. Add to this the 572

‚bambini’ runners (10 years and under) who ran 800 meters, and one

can imagine that the organisers were faced with a problem or two when trying to

accommodate such numbers considering the narrow width of some of the stretches

leading through the beautiful Tiergarten park.

Aida’s march of triumph, from the PA system, and frenetic cheers from

the spectators welcomed the last finisher in the walking event, Christiane

Kreusler, who took 1:33:08 to cover the 10k. The youngest competitor in the

bambini run, 3-year old Vincent Zimmermann, was accompanied home by his

sisters. According to his mother he ‚ran’ his first race when she

was still pregnant – competing in an earlier edition of the AVON

women’s race!

In the 10 km elite race Kathrin Weßel (SCC Berlin), witnessed by her

baby daughter, repeated her victory of 2000, in a time of 33:02 minutes. Second

place went to Iris Biba (ASC Darmstadt) in 33:11, followed by Kristina da

Fonseca-Wollheim (LG Eintracht Frankfurt) in 33:39, Susanne Pumper (AUT/LC

Wien) in 33:44, and Carmen Siewert (LG Vorpommern) in 34:48. From the starting

gun, Kathrin Weßel had surged ahead of the pack, but was caught by Iris

Biba at about half way. For a while, both women then ran shoulder to shoulder,

before Kathrin Weßel again gained a slight advantage at around the 8k

mark. Over the last two kilometres, all the leading competitors encountered

some extra problems having to find their way through the pack of lapped

competitors.

The 5k race was dominated by Birgit Hunneshagen (WSG

Königs-Wusterhausen) who finished in 19:07, ahead of Angelika Ehebrecht

(Potsdamer LC) in 19:46. To round up the great afternoon, generous title

sponsors AVON, represented by their chief executive Stuart McTavish, staged an

emotional awards presentation and reaffirmed that they will continue to support

this outstanding event.

For 2003, SCC-RUNNING expect more than 10,000 competitors, which is why the

start and finish of the race are planned to be moved to spacious ‘Strasse

des 17. Juni’ road, or – should the construction works be completed

to schedule – to the extensive square in front of the new Federal

Chancellor’s Office.

 

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