Dream debut! Joyciline Jepkosgei wins New York Marathon

Wednesday March 18 2020

Joyciline Jepkosgei of Kenya crosses the finish line to win the Professional Women's race during the 2019 TCS New York City Marathon in New York on November 3, 2019. PHOTO | TIMOTHY CLARY |


World Half Marathon record holder Joyciline Jepkosgei is this year's New York City Marathon champion.

Jepkosgei, who was making her debut in marathon, pulled away from defending champion Mary Keitany with seven kilometres to go before winning in 2 hours, 22 minutes and 38 seconds.

She failed to beat the course record set by Margaret Okayo in 2003 by seven seconds. Okayo set a new course record with victory in 2:22:31.

That effectively ended Keitany’s dream of winning five New York City Marathons this year.

Keitany finished second 53 seconds off the pace in 2:23:32 as Ethiopian Ruti Aga settled third in 2:25:51

The race curved into a battle between Keitany, Jepkosgei and Aga with the trio passing through half way in 1:11:19 as the 2018 Boston Marathon champion Desiree Linden from USA fell off.

It was left to a two-horse race between Keitany and Jepkosgei after the two Kenyans pulled away from Tokyo Marathon champion Aga just before the 32km mark.

A thrilling exchange of leads ensued as Keitany and Jepkosgei cruised past the 35km in 1:58:33 as Aga fell behind by 25 seconds.

The 26-year-old Jepkosgei would step on her gas pedal to hit the 40km mark in 2:15:19 as Keitany stayed behind with 25 seconds with Aga falling back to cross the 40km in 2:17:34.