The only marathon run over two con­ti­nents will be held for chil­dren this year with the motto, ‘We are run­ning for the fu­ture of our chil­dren.’ A to­tal of 73 elite ath­letes, 24 from Turkey, will par­tic­i­pate

Daily Sabah (Turkey) - - Front Page -

THOU­SANDS of run­ners will throng Is­tan­bul on Sun­day to run the 39th Is­tan­bul Marathon, the world’s only cross-con­ti­nen­tal race. The slo­gan this year is: We are run­ning for the fu­ture of our chil­dren.

Some 73 elite ath­letes, in­clud­ing 24 from Turkey, will par­tic­i­pate in the IAAF Gold La­bel Road Race. Spon­sored by Voda­fone for the sixth time, the event is ex­pected to break the at­ten­dance and race­track records.

In the men’s cat­e­gory, Paul Lonyan­gata of Kenya, who clocked his best at 2:06:10 in April this year, will be the fa­vorite. He will be closely fol­lowed by Kenya’s Ja­cob Kendagor and Ezekiel Kem­boi Omullo and Ethiopian ath­lete Bazu Worku.

Among the fa­vorites, Kendagor achieved his per­sonal best of 2:07:33 at the Seoul Marathon this March. Worku, on the other hand, clocked his best of 2:05:25 in Ber­lin back in 2010 and clocked 2:08:48 in Prague this year. Kenya’s Ezekiel Kem­boi Omullo clocked his best of 2:08:50 in War­saw last year.

Six times in the Golden League and 10 times in the Di­a­mond League in the 3,000-meter steeple­chase cham­pion and 2004 Athens Olympics bronze medal­ist, Paul Koech of Kenya will also par­tic­i­pate in the Is­tan­bul Marathon, only sec­ond in his ca­reer. The 1981-born ath­lete com­pleted the Rot­ter­dam Marathon in 2:12:02 in April, and now aims to grab a podium place in Is­tan­bul.

In the women’s cat­e­gory, cur­rent cham­pion Kenya’s Agnes Jeruto Bar­so­sio, who came sec­ond in this year’s Paris Marathon, is the clear fa­vorite. She clocked her per­sonal best of 2:20:59 at the event.

Her clos­est com­peti­tors are Sally Bar­so­sio, Visi­line Jep­kesho of Kenya and Ethiopian ath­letes Lete­brhan Hay­ley and Me­seret Mengistu.

Jep­kesho, clocked her ca­reer best of 2:21:37 in the 2017 Paris Marathon while Hay­ley achieved her best of 2:25:01 sec­ond in the Dongy­ing Marathon. Mengistu, on the other hand, clocked her best in Paris at 2:23:26.

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