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Ikebe Tops Weekend Overseas Half Marathon Results at Great North Run

by Brett Larner

Three Japanese men from two rival companies were on the roads in Europe this weekend competing over the half marathon distance.  At the Great North Run former Meiji University captain Minoru Ikebe (Team Honda) had the fastest time of the three, running just off his PB in 1:03:48, the fastest time ever by a Japanese man on the Great North Run course even though far off winner 2011 Lake Biwa Mainichi Marathon winner and London Olympics bronze medalist Wilson Kipsang's winning time of 59:06.  Former Team Denso runner and 2012 Olympic Marathon gold medalist Tiki Gelana (Ethiopia) took 3rd in the women's race behind the outstanding debut of Tirunesh Dibaba (Ethiopia) and runner-up Edna Kiplagat (Kenya), the 2011 World Championships marathon gold medalist.

In the Czech Republic at the Usti nad Ladem Half Marathon, 2011 World Championships men's marathon team member Yoshinori Oda (Team Toyota) ran almost 30 seconds off Ikebe's GNR time, clocking 1:04:18 for 4th, far behind winner Henry Kiplagat's solo 1:01:26.   His teammate Shingo Mishima (Team Toyota) was 30 seconds back in 1:04:48 for 6th.  Another former Team Denso Ethiopian, Betelhem Moges, won the women's race in 1:11:51.

2012 Great North Run Half Marathon
Gateshead, U.K., 9/16/12
click here for complete results

Men
1. Wilson Kipsang (Kenya) - 59:06
2. Micah Kogo (Kenya) - 59:07 - PB
3. Imane Merga (Ethiopia) - 59:56 - debut
4. Mike Kigen (Kenya) - 1:00:18
5. Emmanuel Bett (Kenya) - 1:00:56 - debut
6. Chris Thompson (U.K.) - 1:01:00 - PB
7. Collis Birmingham (Australia) - 1:01:25 - PB
8. Ryan Vail (U.S.A.) - 1:02:04 - PB
9. Nick McCormick (U.K.) - 1:02:44 - PB
10. Mustafa Mohamed (Sweden) - 1:03:12
-----
13. Minoru Ikebe (Team Honda) - 1:03:49

Women
1. Tirunesh Dibaba (Ethiopia) - 1:07:35 - debut
2. Edna Kiplagat (Kenya) - 1:07:41
3. Tiki Gelana (Ethiopia) - 1:07:48
4. Jelena Prokopcuka (Latvia) - 1:08:09
5. Jo Pavey (U.K.) - 1:09:20
6. Rene Kalmer (South Africa) - 1:10:13
7. Gemma Steel (U.K.) - 1:10:46
8. Caryl Jones (U.K.) - 1:11:18
9. Freya Murray (U.K.) - 1:12:23
10. Amy Whitehead (U.K.) - 1:13:15

2012 Usti nad Labem Half Marathon
Czech Republic, 9/16/12
click here for complete results

Men
1. Henry Kiplagat (Kenya) - 1:01:26
2. Adugna Tekele (Ethiopia) - 1:03:38
3. Boniface Kirui (Kenya) - 1:04:10
4. Yoshinori Oda (Team Toyota) - 1:04:18
5. John Kiprotich (Kenya) - 1:04:48
6. Shingo Mishima (Team Toyota) - 1:04:48

Women
1. Betelhem Moges (Ethiopia) - 1:11:51
2. Tadelech Bekele (Ethiopia) - 1:12:01
3. Pamela Lisoreng (Kenya) - 1:13:13
4. Olga Kotovska (Ukraine) - 1:15:07
5. Yulia Ruban (Ukraine) - 1:15:30

text and photo (c) 2012 Brett Larner
all rights reserved

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