Edna to fi­nally land Sh50m WMM jack­pot

Ki­pla­gat ben­e­fits big time af­ter Rita Jep­too’s ban is ex­tended to Au­gust 2018

The Star (Kenya) - - Sports Local - BY MUIGAI KIGURU @muigaikig­uru

Two-time world marathon cham­pion Edna Ki­pla­gat has been awarded the Ab­bott World Marathon Ma­jors Se­ries for 2014 fol­low­ing the nul­li­fi­ca­tion of drug cheat Rita Jep­too’s win­ning re­sult at the 2014 Chicago Marathon.

The an­nounce­ment means Ki­pla­gat will now pocket the Sh50m cash prize that comes with win­ning the se­ries com­posed of Bos­ton, Lon­don, Berlin, Chicago, New York City and Tokyo marathons.

Ab­bot­tWMM gen­eral man­ager Tim Hadz­ima said: “We can now fi­nally say that jus­tice has been served and that Edna Ki­pla­gat has re­ceived the recog­ni­tion she de­serves.”

On Wed­nes­day, the Court of Ar­bi­tra­tion for Sports up­held an ap­peal by the IAAF, dou­bling Jep­too’s ini­tial two-year ban and keep­ing her out of com­pe­ti­tion un­til Oc­to­ber 30, 2018 in ad­di­tion to quash­ing all of her re­sults from April 17, 2014. Jep­too has also been given a life­time ban from Ab­bot­tWMM’s marathons.

“We are dis­ap­pointed that due process took so long but we are de­lighted that at last we are able to ac­knowl­edge Edna Ki­pla­gat,” said Hadz­ima. “We will con­tinue to work with the IAAF and other or­gan­i­sa­tions to fa­cil­i­tate our ex­ten­sive ad­di­tional out-of-com­pe­ti­tion test­ing pro­gram for marathon run­ners, and to do all that we can to reach our goal of erad­i­cat­ing dop­ing.”

Ki­pla­gat joins Kenya’s Wil­son Kip­sang at the top of the Ab­bot­tWMM Se­ries VIII leader board. The two ath­letes amassed the most points based on fin­ishes in a two-year se­ries They in­cluded the 2013 Tokyo, Bos­ton, Lon­don, Berlin, Chicago and New York City marathons, the 2013 IAAF World Cham­pi­onships and the 2014 Tokyo, Bos­ton, Vir­gin Money Lon­don, Berlin, Chicago and New York City marathons.

“Ev­ery marathon run­ner dreams of win­ning this ti­tle. It means so much to me and my fam­ily,” said Ki­pla­gat, who has a per­sonal best of 2:19:50 clocked at the 2012 Lon­don Marathon. In Jan­uary this year, Ki­pla­gat had called on au­thor­i­ties to en­sure she gets the win­nings af­ter the sus­pen­sion of the pre­vi­ous win­ner Rus­sia’s Liliya Shobukhova and Jep­too.

Ki­pla­gat ob­served that the duo had been sus­pended for dop­ing vi­o­la­tions and she was there­fore the right­ful win­ner af­ter fin­ish­ing sec­ond on the stand­ings on both oc­ca­sions. Ki­pla­gat said her drive had been dented by los­ing out to drugs cheats.

“My tal­ent is be­ing wasted. I don’t have any mo­ti­va­tion,” said Ki­pla­gat. “Shobukhova and Jep­too have been sus­pended but I have not been paid what was due to me.”

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