Contact: Drisha Leggitt
RONO & TITOVA WIN CALIFORNIA INTERNATIONAL MARATHON -
WORLD RECORD BROKEN BY AREA 80-YEAR OLD
SACRAMENTO, California - Kenyan Elly Rono and Russian Tatiana Titova were
the first place winners, while 80-year-old, Sacramento-area native Helen
Klein broke the World's Record for her age group, during the California
International Marathon (CIM) on Sunday morning, December 8, 2002.
Featuring clear, crisp weather and a course that crosses through two
cities, as well as parts of the unincorporated areas of Sacramento County,
the 26-mile, 385-yard CIM began at 7 a.m. in Folsom (Auburn-Folsom and
Folsom Dam Roads) and finished at the State Capitol in Sacramento.
Capturing first place in the men's category, Elly Rono, currently a
resident of Durham, North Carolina, finished the CIM with a time of
2:11:56. Helsinki-resident Jussi Utrianen was the second place winner at
2:13:10, and U.S. Olympian and Wisconsin-native Rod Dehaven took third
place at a time of 2:13:19.
Russians captured first, second and third place within the CIM Women's
competition. First-place winner Tatiana Titova, who now resides in Tampa,
Florida, finished the CIM at a time of 2:33:13. Second-place was secured
by Russian Alena Vinitskaya at a time of 2:33:40. The third place winner
was Alena Makolova at a time of 2:34:42. The fourth place winner, the first
American female to cross the finish line, was San Diego resident Tamara Lave
at a time of 2:37:32.
However, the most emotionally charged moment of the event was generated by
senior runner Helen Klein. The 80-year-old, Rancho Cordova resident broke
the World's Record for her age group of 80 years and over. Finishing at a
time of 4:31, Klein shattered the previous record by 39 minutes.
"Helen is amazing…she's an inspiration," stated CIM Board Member Denis
Zilaff. "We are so proud that she is a local runner. I've been in the CIM
all 20 years and plan to run my 50th CIM when I turn 80-years-old…and I can
only hope to match Helen's time."
In addition to Zilaff, the CIM had 19 runners who have finished the race all
20 years, including Michael Buzbee, Steve Haun, Bruce Mauldin, Blake
McDonald, Michael Nolan, John O'Neill, Steve Polansky, James Raia, Michael
Ryan, Alfred Saragoza, Michael Sullivan, Ernest Takahashi, Tim Tweitmeyer
and Barry Turner.
Other winners included the Men's Masters' Champion, 48-year-old Drew Vincent
of Sacramento, and the Women's Masters' Champion Diana Fitzpatrick of
But CIM staff and Board members agree that of the over 4,000 runner that
participated in the 20th annual CIM, every person that completes the 26-mile
journey is a winner.
"Everyone remembers their first marathon," explained CIM Board member Leigh
Rutledge. "It's a huge accomplishment in your life. And once you cross
that finish line you're a marathoner."
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