World Half Marathon champion, Kenya’s Gladys Cherono continued to reign with a course record feat at the Jianzhen International Half Marathon, China on Tuesday.
Cherono’s unstoppable charge in the final stages of the race was too much for defending champion Worknesh Degefa from Ethiopia as the Kenyan claimed victory, along with the course record time of 1:08:16.
It was the 30-year-old's second half marathon triumph in China, having also won in Zhuhai in 2011. Cherono, who is also the 2013 World 10,000m silver medallist, had just won the World Half Marathon title on March 29 in Copenhagen, Denmark.
Degefa finished second, almost a minute behind in 1:09:07, her third straight sub 70-minute performance of 2014.
Other Kenyans Joyce Kiplimo (1:10:21), Peninah Kigen (1:10:37) and Pauline Muchiri (1:11:36) finished sixth, seventh and ninth respectively.
Former 1500m specialist Meskerem Assefa completed her first ever half marathon in 1:09:10 for third place, while fellow Ethiopians Gulume Tollesa and Waganesh Mekasha, timed 1:09:28 and 1:09:30 respectively, were not far behind.
MEN FALL TO ERITREAN
Meanwhile, Kenyan men Edwin Rotich and Silas Chebogel settled for silver and bronze in 1:00:17 and 1:00:22 respectively after pushing Eritrean Nguse Amlosom to a course record victory time of 1:00:08.
Rotich was running in Asia for the first time, and his time just fell short of his personal best 59:59 by 18 seconds. He set his personal best last month in Azkoitia. Chebogel's time was also short by five seconds from personal best set in Berlin three weeks ago.