by Brett Larner
Team Hokuren's Philes Ongori, who ran the fastest women's half marathon in the world last year, set a new PB of 1:07:50 at the Feb. 20 Ras Al Khaimah Half Marathon in the UAE. Ongori ran among the leaders until the final kilometers when Ethiopia's Dire Tune broke away to a new national record of 1:07:18. Ongori was outkicked by Ethiopian Aselefech Mergia, settling for 3rd. Team Aruze's Julia Mumbi Muraga was a distant 10th in 1:09:40.
Men's winner Patrick Makau of Kenya ran 58:52, the second-fastest half marathon time ever recorded, breaking world record holder Samuel Wanjiru's course record by 1 second. Yamanashi Gakuin University's Mekubo Mogusu did not start the race after a recent car accident in Kenya, and his friend Daniel Gitau of Nihon University likewise failed to start.
A detailed recap of both the women's and men's races and a link to complete results are available here.
(c) 2009 Brett Larner
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