Ethiopian runners win Tokyo Marathon men’s, women’s races
Tokyo, March 3: Ethiopian runners won the men’s and women’s races at the 12th edition of the Tokyo Marathon, here on Sunday, braving a wet and windy weather.
Birhanu Legese won the men’s race, his first major title, clocking 2:04:48, reports Efe news.
Kenya’s Bedan Karoki finished second in 2:06:48, while compatriot Dickson Chumba, who had won twice in Tokyo, came third in 2:08.44, more than three minutes slower than his 2018 race.
Japan’s hope for a homegrown victory was dashed when Suguru Osako who set a new Japanese national record in October pulled out of the race after 30 kilometres.
“I am determined to do everything possible for the race to let at least five Japanese run (a) 2:06 marathon before the 2020 Tokyo Olympics,” race director Tad Hayano had said, according to a statement by the Tokyo Marathon Foundation on Sunday, before the race.
Ethiopian Ruti Aga won the women’s race in 2:20:40, defeating compatriot Helen Tola by 21 seconds.
Around 38,000 runners had defied the miserable weather to take part in the iconic race through the heart of downtown Tokyo, one of the six races in the World Marathon Majors (WMM) and one of the largest in the world.
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