British marathon champion clocks 68:45 in Japan for her second fastest ever time

Highlights from the past week of athletics action, including a half-marathon win in Japan for Britain’s Charlotte Purdue and record-breaking victories for Kenya’s Leonard Barsoton and Ethiopia’s Guteni Shone at the Tata Steel Kolkata 25K.

Sanyo Ladies Road Race, Okayama, Japan, December 15

Charlotte Purdue won the half-marathon in 68:45 for the British marathon champion’s second fastest ever time over 13.1 miles and her quickest on a record-eligible course (behind her 68:08 recorded at this year’s Great North Run).

It is over a minute quicker than she ran at the Kagawa Marugame International Half Marathon in February.

Purdue beat, among others, Japanese Olympic marathon trials winner Honami Maeda (69:08).

Sara Miyake was third in 69:23, while Canada’s Rachel Cliff set a national record of 70:06 in sixth.

Zatopek:10, Australia, December 14

World 5000m finalist Stewart McSweyn broke the Oceanian 10,000m record with his Olympic qualifying time of 27:23.80 to win the event, which incorporated the Australian championships, improving Ben St Lawrence’s record mark of 27:24.95 from 2011.

Patrick Tiernan was second in 27:31.20 and Jack Bruce third in 28:15.94.

World steeplechase finalist Genevieve Gregson won the women’s race in 32:47.83 ahead of Canada’s Andrea Seccafien in 32:48.30 and Emily Brichacek in 32:57.58.

Tata Steel Kolkata 25K, India, December 15

Kenya’s Leonard Barsoton and Ethiopia’s Guteni Shone both set event records to win.

Photo by Procam International

Barsoton (pictured above), the 2017 World Cross silver medallist, clocked 73:05 to take 43 seconds off the event record set by Ethiopia’s Kenenisa Bekele in 2017 while Shone ran 82:09 to win by more than a minute and took almost four minutes off the event record of 86:01 set by her compatriot Degitu Azimeraw two years ago.

Zurich Maratón Málaga, Spain, December 15

Kenya’s Martin Cheruiyot started the race as a pacemaker but went on to win in a course record of 2:10:08 ahead of Eliud Kibet (2:10:41) and Moses Mbugua (2:10:52).

Ethiopia’s Selamawit Getnet Tsegaw also ran a course record time of 2:27:56 to win the women’s race by nearly five minutes ahead of Gelane Senbere (2:32:28).

Britain’s Rebecca Hilland finished fourth in 2:40:21.

Shenzhen International Marathon, China, December 15

Ethiopia’s 2013 world bronze medallist Tadese Tola won the men’s race in 2:10:13. His countryman Tefera Debela was second in 2:10:59 and Kenya’s Julius Tuwei was third in 2:10:59.

It was an Ethiopian double as Belaynesh Yami won the women’s race (2:27:42) ahead of her compatriots Medhin Gebreselassie (2:30:12) and Tsehay Desalegn (2:32:47).

Hofu Marathon, Japan, December 15

Kenya’s Matthew Kiprotich won the men’s race in 2:10:47 ahead of Taki Yoshimura (2:11:13), while Hisae Yoshimatsu won her eighth women’s title at the event in 2:39:22.

Pisa Marathon, Italy, December 15

Recent Verona Marathon winner Nikolina Sustic of Croatia also won over 26.2 miles in Pisa, clocking 2:40:22 ahead of Finland’s Annemari Kiekara in 2:41:20.

Morocco’s Jilali Jamali won the men’s race in 2:22:49.

Cross de Venta de Banos, Spain, December 15

Uganda’s Albert Chemutai claimed victory over the 10.575km course by almost a minute ahead of Ethiopia’s Getnet Wale, 32:13 to 33:01.

The women’s 7.575km was won by Ethiopia’s Zenebu Fikadu in 26:44 ahead of Kenya’s Deborah Samum in 26:56.

Stockport 10, Manchester, December 15

Jonny Mellor broke the course record for the hilly 10-mile race, clocking 49:23.

Photo by Harry Shakeshaft

Veleska Wills claimed the women’s title in 61:22.

North Eastern Counties Cross Country Championships, Alnwick, December 14

Olympic marathoner Sonia Samuels won the women’s race ahead of Philippa Stone, while Carl Avery took the men’s title ahead of Callum Johnson.

Greater Manchester Cross Country Championships, Boggart Hole Clough, December 14

Gavin Hill and Danielle Fegan claimed a double for Sale Harriers, with Fegan retaining the women’s title.

Photo by Harry Shakeshaft

» See the December 19 issue of AW magazine for more from this week’s athletics and running events

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