New York, NY, USA - Defying pre-race predictions of a close finish, defending and 2003 champion Lornah Kiplagat of the Netherlands led wire-to-wire at the Circle of Friends New York Mini 10K Saturday morning, taking her third Mini victory in 31:27, ahead of New York City Marathon champion Jelena Prokopcuka of Latvia and Los Angeles Marathon runner-up Gete Wami of Ethiopia.
The strong field included Australian 2004 World Cross Country champion Benita Johnson and Ukrainian 2005 Boston BAA half-marathon champion Nataliya Berkut, who, along with Prokopcuka, ran national records placing in the top five at the Great Manchester Run 10K three weeks ago, where Wami was second. Last weekend, Johnson and Berkut had also relegated the Kenyan-born Kiplagat to third place at the Freihofer’s 5K in Albany, New York.
“There will be at least three women with 800 metres to go,” Mary Wittenberg, CEO of the Mini’s organiser, the New York Road Runners, had predicted on Thursday, with Kiplagat and Johnson also expecting a close race.
“Good job, Lornah!” ....