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XINHUA NEWS SERVICE REPORTS FROM THE AFRICAN CONTINENT

 

Kosgei leads Kenya quest at Frankfurt marathon   

NAIROBI, (Xinhua) -- Kenya’s Martin Kosgei will return to Frankfurt Marathon course on Oct. 28 aiming for gold after he returned fourth in last year’s race.

Kosgei, 29, says he was not well prepared last year as he tackled windy conditions to finish fourth clocking 2:09:39 in a race that was dominated by Ethiopian runners. The fourth place position fetched Kosgei 6,500 U.S. dollars.

“I want to win the race this time round. I have experience now and I know the course very well. I thank the organizers for giving me the opportunity to return and try and win the race for the third time,” he said Wednesday in Nairobi.

Kosgei has three marathon wins to his credit since his debut in 2012. He started off winning in Salzburg (Austria), Marseille and Lyon (France). He was second in Hannover and Frankfurt in 2016. This year’s race will be the third time Kosgei will be attempting to win in Frankfurt.

“I believe I have the strength to do well. Hopefully it will be third time lucky,” said Kosgei.

Ethiopia’s Guye Adola, who clocked 2:03:46 on his marathon debut in the Berlin Marathon last September losing to Olympic marathon champion Eliud Kipchoge, has also confirmed his availability to race in Frankfurt.

Adola will face opposition from teammate Kelkile Gezahegn and Kosgei, who finished second and fourth respectively in last year’s race.

“We are looking forward to a thrilling men’s race with world-class runners. We are pleased when athletes of this caliber choose Frankfurt for their marathon. It is always our aim to present world-class athletes and at the same time to offer perfect conditions for every single runner,” said Jo Schindler, the Frankfurt marathon Race director.

Adola will be looking to rebound from a disappointing showing in the London Marathon where he fell out of contention in the early stages.

Hiroyuki Yamamoto will lead a strong Japanese contingent in Frankfurt and German record-holder Arne Gabius will also compete.

Adola’s performance in 2017 also made him the second fastest Ethiopian ever to run the marathon behind Kenenisa Bekele and ahead of the former world record holder Haile Gebrselassie.

“I really enjoyed everything about my marathon debut until the last few kilometers,” said Adola, whose time also earned him 11th place on the world all-time list. 

             

 

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