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Chepngetich Runs Fastest-Ever Women's Half Marathon on Japanese Soil at Gifu Seiryu Half

Kenyan Ruth Chepngetich dominated the Gifu Seiryu Half Marathon's 9th edition, running the fastest-ever women's half marathon on Japanese soil to win in 1:06:06. Taking advantage of cooler than usual conditions Chepngetich was out at world record pace from the gun, accompanied early on by fellow Kenyans Joan Chelimo Melly and Evaline Chirchir but alone by 10 km and leading by 6 seconds over Melly in 30:45.

The second half hit her hard, but Chepngetich had no trouble holding on well enough to take 1:38 off the 1:07:44 course record set two years ago by world record holder Joyciline Jepkosgei. Melly, Chirchir and 4th-placer Mimi Belete (Bahrain) all went under 1:08:20, with Miyuki Uehara (Daiichi Seimei) taking the top Japanese spot at 6th in 1:11:03.

The men's race was more conservative, with a lead pack of ten including last year's winner Nicholas Kosimbei (Kenya/Toyota), 2014 winner Bedan Karoki (Kenya/DeNA) and national record holder Yuta Shitara (Honda) going out near 1:00:30 pace. By 15 km that had shaken down to just Karoki and Amos Kurgat (Kenya/Chudenko), Kurgat breaking free over the final 5 km to win in 1:00:34. Karoki was next in 1:01:07, with Shitara finishing 5th as the top Japanese in 1:01:36 just ahead of Kosimbei.

9th Gifu Seiryu Half Marathon

Gifu, 4/28/19
complete results and splits

1. Ruth Chepngetich (Kenya) - 1:06:06 - CR, ACR
2. Joan Chelimo Melly (Kenya) - 1:08:01
3. Evaline Chirchir (Kenya) - 1:08:07
4. Mimi Belete (Bahrain) - 1:08:16
5. Gotytom Gebreslase (Ethiopia) - 1:10:16
6. Miyuki Uehara (Japan/Daiichi Seimei) - 1:11:03
7. Rose Chelimo (Bahrain) - 1:12:58
8. Ana Dulce Felix (Portugal) - 1:14:14
9. Yuko Mizuguchi (Japan/Takayama T&F Assoc.) - 1:15:40
10. Marie Imada (Japan/Iwatani Sangyo) - 1:16:22

1. Amos Kurgat (Kenya/Chudenko) - 1:00:34
2. Bedan Karoki (Kenya/DeNA) - 1:01:07
3. Abraham Kipyatich (Kenya/Asahi Kasei) - 1:01:30
4. Silas Kingori (Kenya/SGH Group) - 1:01:31
5. Yuta Shitara (Japan/Honda) - 1:01:36
6. Nicholas Kosimbei (Kenya/Toyota) - 1:01:43
7. Jonathan Ndiku (Kenya/Hitachi Butsuryu) - 1:01:55
8. Ezekiel Cheboitibin (Kenya/Sunbelx) - 1:02:29
9. Patrick Muendo Mwaka (Kenya/Aisan Kogyo) - 1:02:58
10. Tsubasa Hayakawa (Japan/Toyota) - 1:03:21

˙© 2019 Brett Larner, all rights reserved

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