Bornes Kitur faces little opposition to win third-tier marathon

Little-known Kenyan runner faces little opposition to win third-tier marathon as big names keep off after hectic season

Bornes Jepkirui Kitur dominated the women’s race to win the Prague Marathon as American Galen Rupp took the honours in the men’s race on Sunday afternoon.

Jepkirui ran a well calculated first half of the race to take leadership from Amane Gobena of Ethiopia who had crossed the 25km marker in 1:24.40.

The pacemakers encouraged Bornes who was at fourth place to move to the front just after the 35km mark, opening a gap of about 80m between her and race leader, Gobena.

Bornes clocked 2 hours 24 minutes and 19 seconds ahead of Ethiopians Belaynesh Oljira (2:25:13) as Amane Gobena settled for third in 2:27:43.

Boston Marathon champion Rupp claimed the men’s race in two hours, six minutes and seven seconds (2:06.07) as Ethiopian Sisay Lemma (2:07.02) and Kenyan Stephen Chelemany (2:09.42) finished second and third.

Chelamany ran the first 15km behind the chasing pack at his own pace before joining the leading pack of six steered by Chicago Marathon champion Galen Rupp near the 20km marker which they cruised past in 1:07.45.

Rupp took over from the pacemaker after the 25 km marker though the Ethiopian (Sisay Lemma) followed him for second place as Chelamany dropped 20 seconds off to the back heading for third place.

Lemma challenged Rupp and took leadership briefly after the 30km which they passed in 1:29:47.

Meanwhile, Rupp had a hard time shaking off Lemma whom they had kept each other company in the second half of the race hiting a possible sprint finish between the two.

Rupp finaly managed to break off from Lemma and opened a gap of about 100m hoping to erase the Boston Marathon heartbreak, which he had to drop out due to the harsh weather conditions.

The American crossed the 35km marker in 1:44.49 chased by Lemma who was about 30 seconds behind as Chalamany chased for third position.

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