Nanning, China – Dire Tune, the World record holder for the One Hour Run, will lead an Ethiopian women’s team to the IAAF / SINOPEC World Half Marathon Championships here on Saturday, October 16. 

Although Ethiopia took the team title in 2004 and 2008, it will face a much stronger Kenyan team this Saturday, which is determined to retain its monopoly on the women’s individual and team titles. The Kenyan team is led by 23-year old Florence Kiplagat, the 2009 world Cross Country Champion. 

Dire Tune, the World record holder for the One Hour Run, is the lead Ethiopian hope. Fourth at these championships in 2006, the 25-year-old has a 1:07:18 career best, and at 1:07:58, has gone nearly as fast this year. A strong marathoner with a sub-2:25 personal best, Tune has illustrated her depth and range from 10Km up.

Watching her back will be 20-year-old Abebech Afework, who’s clocked 1:10:49 this year, and Feyse Tadese (1:10:08, SB, PB).

A total prize money purse of $245,000 ($122,500 each for the men’s and women’s races): 

Place / Prize 

1st – $30,000
2nd – $15,000
3rd – $10,000
4th – $7,000
5th – $5,000
6th – $3,000 

1st – $15,000
2nd -$ 12,000
3rd – $9,000
4th – $7,500
5th – $6,000
6th – $3,000

World record Bonus:  

Any athlete who breaks Lornah Kiplagat’s record of 1:06:25 will be awarded $50,000 by the IAAF.