Ethiopian Runners set new course records in Hong Kong

Hong Kong – (IAAF) Dereje Abera (men) and Misiker Mekonnen Demissie (women) of Ethiopia set new course records at the Hong Kong Marathon here today.

Losing a Marathon by one second last year taught Dejere Abera of Ethiopia a lesson that he put to good use this morning (5), when he won the Standard Chartered Hong Kong Marathon – an IAAF Bronze Label Road Race – by less than a second. Indeed so tight and exciting was the men’s finish that Eliud Cheptei in second place shared

Dejere’s winning time of 2:11:27, while two more Kenyans, Cosmas Kyeva and Julius Maisei were just one second each further back.

Dejere improved the long standing course record by one minute and 42 seconds, but his colleague, Misiker Demissie took pride of place in that department when her runaway victory in the women’s race, in 2:30:12, took all of three and a half minutes from last year’s course record.

Change of Name
There was more confusion over Misiker’s change of name than her running tactics. It seems that the Ethiopian had an unhappy time running for Bahrain under the name of Teyba Naser and has reverted to a full Ethiopian name of Misiker Mekonnen Demissie, and has been living with husband Zereu Kelele in Albuquerque, New Mexico for some time.

There was no debate about her victory though. She led from the start, and though she had colleague Shitaye Gemechu and Kenyan Winfred Nyansikera right behind until past halfway, when she accelerated at 30 kilometres, she ran right away from them.

MEN –

1. Dereje Abera, Ethiopia       2.11.27 (course record)

2. Eliud Chepti, Kenya     2.11.27

3. Cosmas Kyeva, Kenya       2.11.28

7. Haile Haja, Ethiopia         2.12.43

8. Negussie Chala, Ethiopia    2.13.17
WOMEN –

1. Misiker Mekonnen Demissie, Ethiopia      2.30.12 (course record)

2. Shitaye Gemechu, Ethiopia       2.31.44

3. Winfred Nyansikera, Kenya      2.31.47

5. Datu Zehara, Ethiopia               2.34.14

7. Goitetom Haftu, Ethiopia         2.39.43

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