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Contact: Heather Middleton, KDMedia
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KENYANS TAKE TOP THREE POSITIONS IN EDINBURGH MARATHON
Kenyan Joseph Mutungu Mbithi won the fourth Edinburgh Marathon today on his
debut British Marathon. Despite the high temperatures, the Kenyan finished
the race in 2.15.46.
Mbithi pulled clear of his Kenyan team mates at the 17 mile mark. John
Muilsa Kioka finished in second place 39 seconds behind Mbithi (2.16.28).
Jonothon Kipsaina took third place in 02.17.01.
Mbithi, whose biggest win was the Eurasia Istanbul Marathon in October last
year said: "There was cheering and I enjoyed it, especially along the sea.
The course was very good, it was hilly and I was a little afraid of it so I
pulled away on my own after 17 miles. Now I know the course and hope God
willing I can come back next year."
4200 marathon runners started the race with 4250 relay runners, split into
850 teams, taking part in the team relay event. Over fifty countries in
total were represented. (Exact numbers of marathon finishers still not
complete as some are still on course)
Geoff Sims, Chief Executive, Edinburgh Marathon said: " Edinburgh deserves
to have a world class marathon and though this event is only in its fourth
year it has the potential to be a major sporting occasion and one that can
attract increasing numbers of elite runners. All the ingredients are in
place and we will work hard with existing and new partners and sponsors to
ensure that the event continues to grow."
"Today's event has been a great success despite the hot temperatures which
made it extremely tough and uncomfortable for runners. We took additional
precautions such as upping the amount of water available to ensure that
there would be more than enough water should it be required. The runners
have reported a great atmosphere along the way with an estimated 100,000
spectators lining the route showing the popularity and belief in the event.
The event would not be a success without the 900 volunteers who assisted
Despite the heat, casualty numbers were low and less than last year. 72
runners required medical assistance of some kind with five runners being
hospitalised, with two runners conditions being described as more serious
but not life threatening.
The women's race had a surprise win with Scot Angela Howe, taking the top
spot from the favourite, Kenyan, Monica Kibet. Angela finished with a new
personal best of 2.51.41. The 35 year-old from Dumfriesshire had run in
seven marathons and is the curator for the British Golf Museum in St
Andrews. Sharon Daw took second place with a time of 3.08.36 and Michelle
Tham from Portobello took third place with a time of 3.11.27.
Ron Hill, the official starter and former Commonwealth Games and European
Championship gold medallist, commented: "Princes Street provides a very
impressive new starting point for the marathon and the course itself is
fantastic with so many major landmarks including Edinburgh Castle and the
Royal Yacht Britannia. The Edinburgh Marathon has got great potential to
become a super marathon behind London."
Ron still holds the record for the faster time run in Scotland for the
marathon with a time of 2.09.28 set during the 1970 Commonwealth Games in
The first ever wheelchair race was won by British Champion Kenny Herriot
(1.48.36). Herriot, who lives in Aberdeen but is originally from
Edinburgh, said: "I feel like I've done ten rounds with Mike Tyson it is a
really tough course due to the uneven surfaces. It's a great training
session though for the World Championships which are in Holland in
The team relay was won in 2.32.41 by the 9977 team with second place going
to Aberdeen University Athletics Club at 2.33.05 and in third place
Derbyshire Police AC at 2.42.02. The 'Sikhs in the City' Team, led by the
world's oldest marathon runner Fauja Singh who is 95, returned this year.
The combined age of the team is 400, with the youngest member being 75.
They completed the course in 4.43.33.
The event generates around £1.8 million for Edinburgh's local economy with
independent researching showing that each runner brings on an average three
supporters who stay for several nights. Over 150 charities will benefit
from the £2 million raised by runners bringing the total money raised since
2003 to £6 million.
The Edinburgh Marathon receives funding from EventScotland, The City of
Edinburgh Council and sportscotland. New sponsors for this year are
Highland Spring, sports wear company, Newline and Coolbillboards.com.
Existing sponsors are Lucozade Sport and Edinburgh Evening News.
A Channel 5 TV package will air an extended highlights programme the week
following the race on Thursday 22nd June.