by Ismail Akwei, at 08:00 am, November 05, 2018, Entertainment

These East African runners rule New York

Photo: TCS New York City Marathon

It took 28-year old Ethiopian runner Lelisa Desisa 2 hours 5 minutes 59 seconds to finish the New York City Marathon in Central Park ahead of all the more than 50,000 participants running 26.2 miles through all five boroughs of New York.

For the women’s race, 36-year-old Kenyan runner Mary Keitany won with a time of 2:22:48, her sixth appearance in the New York City Marathon and fourth victory after wins in 2014, 2015 and 2016.

The two winners recorded the second fastest time in the history of the marathon. This is Lelisa Desisa’s first New York City Marathon and he beat favourites Shura Kitata, also from Ethiopia, and defending champion Geoffrey Kamworor from Kenya.

East Africans have been dominating the New York City Marathon which was first organised in 1970. The first African winner of the marathon was Ibrahim Hussein from Kenya who won in 1987. In 1994 when the marathon was marking its 25th anniversary, another Kenyan, Tegla Loroupe, became the first female African winner.

Since 2010, Africans have won the New York City Marathon which is considered the largest marathon in the world which is watched by hundreds of thousands of spectators.

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