Ethiopians Abrha Milaw and Gelete Burka on Sunday won the men and women’s races to end Kenya’s dominance at Paris Marathon.
Milaw shattered Kenya’s Paul Lonyangata’s dream of a historic hat-trick when he pulled away with two kilometres to go to win in 2 hours, 07 minutes and 04 seconds.
Another Ethiopian and prerace favourite Asefa Mengistu finished second in 2:07:24 as Lonyangata settled for third place in 2:07:28. Kenyans Morris Gachaga and Barselius Kipyego finished fourth and fifth in 2:07:45 and 2:07:57 respectively.
The Kenyans had won the last four editions of the race before Milaw struck to recapture the title Kenenisa Bekele had won for Ethiopia last in 2014 with a course record time of 2:05:04 that still stands to date.
Kenyan women were locked out of the podium finish when Burka, who last year ran a personal best of 2:20:45 in Dubai before winning Ottawa Marathon in 2:22:17 the same year, clocked 2:22:14 to win.
Burka’s compatriots Azmera Gebru and newcomer Azmera Abreha finished second and third in 2:22:52 and 2:23:36 to locked out Kenyans from the podium finish.
Kenya’s Sally Chepyego, who led for the better part of the last phase of the race, settled fifth as Kenya relinquished the reign to Ethiopia, having won the previous three editions.
Clémence Calvin of France settled fourth and in her best ever finish in a personal best of 2:23:36.