After Vienna breakthrough, Lemma targets 2016 Olympics

Sisay LemmaSisay Lemma only donned a pair of running shoes for the first time at the age of 17 but the Vienna City Marathon winner harbours aspirations of making the Ethiopian team for the 2016 Olympics in Rio de Janeiro.

At the age of 24, Sisay Lemma scored his biggest win to date on a windy morning in the Vienna City Marathon, an IAAF Gold Label Road Race, on Sunday (12).

And the nature of his 2:07:31 win was emphatic. Competing in his sixth career marathon, Lemma’s winning margin of 4:43 was the biggest in the history of a race which was first staged in the Austrian capital back in 1984.

While the school run – in the most literal sense of the term – provided an early introduction to running for many of the top Ethiopian long distance runners, Lemma reveals he came to the sport at a relatively late age.

“I concentrated on school first, and had to help my parents with farm work so I had 14 hour days. I did not do any sports,” said Lemma, who started running and training at the age of 17 when he was still in high school.

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