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Gebrselassie wins in Amsterdam but misses world record

Haile Gebrselassie ran to his first marathon victory in Amsterdam, but missed

clearly the world record at the end. He ran 2:06:20 hours, which

is a new Ethiopian record, course record and world lead as well. He

improved his personal best by 15 seconds and the course record by three

seconds. Haile Gebrselassie improved the world lead, set last week by Felix

Limo in Chicago (2:07:02), by 42 seconds. He is now the only runner who

ran the marathon sub 2:07 this year.

But the big goal was out of reach. The world record of Paul Tergat was

untouched. The Kenyan, who is a permanent rival of Haile Gebrselassie, set

the world record of 2:04:55 at the

real,- Berlin Marathon two years ago.


With a big winning gap Haile Gebrselassie reached the finish in the Amsterdam

Olympic Stadium. Daniel Yego finished second in

2:08:58 hours, third was the Ethiopian Tesfaye Tola in 2:09:17. There was another Ethiopian victory in the

women’s race. The clearly slower race compared to the men’s race was won

by Kutre Dulecha in 2:30:06 hours ahead

of Kristijna Loonen (Holland/2:34:08). 6,477 runners from 55 nations were

running in good weather conditions. With a bright blue sky, the race was

started at 11 am in the

Olympic stadium. The temperatures increased to 16 degrees. Only the wind was

sometimes baffling the runners.


Haile Gebrselassie was running protected and leaded by a whole group of pace

makers. Right from the start a fast race developed. The group reached the

5- and 10 k marks in 14:49 minutes and

29:39 minutes. Due to a tail wind in the next phase of the race it was

getting even faster. The 15 k split was 44:06 minutes and the half marathon

62:03.Everything looked like the world record being broken. But

already in the next 5 kilometers the first doubts came. The five k from 20

k (58:49) to 25 k (1:13:57) was 15:08 minutes and notably slower. Additionally there

were only three runners left in the lead. At 25 k the last pace maker Francis

Kiprop (Kenya) dropped out

to early for a world record hunt.

 

Daniel Yego was running next to Gebrselassie until shortly before

the 30 k mark. But he couldn’t pace at this phase of the race anymore. He had

to concentrate to finish with a good time himself.


Contrary to Paul Tergat, who was lead by his training fellows Titus Munji and

Sammy Korir for almost the whole race, Haile Gebrselassie had to run the last

twelve k alone. At the 30 and 35 k points he was still faster compared to

Paul Tergat, with 1:28:57 and 1:43:50 (by 27 and nine seconds). But while the

Kenyan had run from 30 to 40 k in 29:12 minutes in Berlin, the

Ethiopian needed 30:18 minutes.


In the end Haile Gebrselassie missed the record and the

related bonus of

250,000 Euro. “I am satisfied with my time nevertheless,” said Haile

Gebrselassie, who earned a total of 100.000 Euro and added: “The last

five kilometers

were very hard. I haven’t been able to increase the pace. Furthermore I

got

stitches. Until 35 k I was feeling very well. I think I have to train

even harder for a marathon.” In the first phase of the race the

runners had a tail wind, but in the second half it was the other way

around. “I

don’t think I ran the first half too fast. 62 minutes are okay for me,”

said

Haile Gebrselassie.


While the men’s race was living from the thrilling world record hunt,

the

decision about the winner in the women’s race fell early: Kutre

Dulecha

was leading right from the start. After 69:22 minutes she reached

the

first half and already was two minutes ahead of Kristijna

Loonen. With 2:30:06 hours the 27 year old winner set a new

personal

best. “I am happy about this victory and my new personal best. The

course is

fast, but the wind was hard,” translated Haile Gebrselassie later at

the press

conference for his countrywomen.

 Results:


Men:


1. Haile Gebrselassie     ETH    2:06:20

2. Daniel Yego        KEN    2:08:58

3. Tesfaye Tola        ETH    2:09:17

4. Bernard Barmasai    KEN    2:10:52

5. George Okworo    KEN    2:11:49

6. Andrew Limo        KEN    2:12:13

7. Jamal Baligha    MOR    2:15:22

8. Sander Schutgens    NED    2:17:53


Women:


1. Kutre Dulecha    ETH    2:30:06

2. Kristijna Loonen    NED    2:34:08

3. Sue Harrison        GBR    2:38:25

4. Charne Rademeyer    RSA    2:39:26

5. A. Bekele        ETH    2:41:40

6. Annemari Sandell    FIN    2:43:23

 

 

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