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Sports

Kenyans rule Jerusalem Marathon

Joey Villar - The Philippine Star

JERUSALEM, Israel – Kenyans Kiprotich Noah Kigen and Margaret Njuguna topped the 12th Jerusalem Marathon that traversed this beautiful and historic place including the world famous walled Old City here Friday.

Kigen, 33, was nothing short of impressive as he blazed through the finish line with a time of two hours, 18 minutes and 13 seconds in claiming his breakthrough triumph in the 42.195-kilometer race after six tries in other meets.

“This is my first time to win after seven races, I’m so happy,” said Kigen, who became the eighth Kenyan to reign supreme in this event that is considered one of the toughest because of its hilly terrain.

Spain’s Chakib Achgar Iatrache was second in 2:25:45 while local bet Gamber Melakmo made the host Israelis proud as he checked in at third in 2:28:30.

Njuguna, 54, was equally breathtaking as she ruled the women’s side in 2:52:44, besting Russian Elena Tolstykh and another hometown entry Noa Berkman, who finished second and third in 2:55:31 and 2:59:12, respectively.

A total of 40,000 runners from across the world participated including a small but proud group of Filipino migrant workers, among them Sef Torquido, who was happy to check in with a time of around four hours and nine minutes.

“Since I have no other sports, I focused on running and I’m happy I completed another marathon race,” said Torquido, a 33-year-old Cotabato City native who works as a nurse in Great Britain.

Torquido said he chose the marathon instead of the one in Barcelona, Spain so that he would not only race, but also tour this beautiful city.

“I will go there,” he added.

Truly, it was a treat for all participants especially the foreign runners as they passed through important sites like the Sultan’s Pool, Mishkenot Sha’ananim, Mount Zion, the German Colony, Rehavia, Armon HaNatziv promenade, Ammunition Hill, Sacher Park, Mount Scopus, and the Mount of Olive among others.

Still, the best was the fabled Old City.

vuukle comment

KENYANS KIPROTICH

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