Omsk, RussiaHeat took a heavy toll on the runners at the Siberian International Marathon on Sunday (12).
In sunny and hot conditions with 36 C. at the start, 23-year old Olga Mazurenok from Belarus was the absolute winner of the race’s 23rd edition, crossing the finish line in 2:44:47, far ahead of the rest.
Siberian International Marathon is an IAAF Bronze Label Road Race.
The race started in extremely hot conditions at 17:00, a time chosen to coincide with the start of the men’s Olympic Marathon in London, Omsk being 6 hours ahead. In previous years the race traditionally started at 9:00 in the morning on the first Saturday of August. Obviously, the choice of start time this year did not prove to be the best for 1172 runners who started the Marathon and ekiden.
Women’s race –
"It was so hot at the start that I was 90% sure that I wouln’t finish the race," Mazurenok said. She set her PB 2:33:56 by winning Debno Marathon this year, and was runner up in Omsk last year in 2:37:45.
From the gun, Mazurenok was running eighth in the women’s field and then slowly started pulling to the front.
"I didn’t worry about anything and was running with my own pace. If I had been worried I wouldn’t have finished at all." At the 8.6km point, the women’s pack stretched out with Mazurenok running third, more than 500 metres behind Russian Yulia Smirnova and Kenyan Rebecca Jerotich (PB 2:35:56 PB, Verona, 2011) who passed through 8.6km in 30:44. However, by half way Mazurenok pulled up to the front and became absolute leader passing through in 1:23:40 and leaving all men and women behind.
"After the 20 kilometre point the sun started setting down and it became a little bit cooler," Mazurenok said after the finish, when the temperature dropped to 32 C.
Two Russian elite runners, Marina Kovaleva (PB 2:31:11, Paris 2011), and Elena Kozhevnikova (PB 2:37:41) and Kenyan Lucy Karimi, 25 (PB 2:38:06 Kassel Marathon 2012) didn’t finish.
Men’s race -
The same happened in the men’s race. Six invited elite national and international runners - Russians Andrey Bryzgalov (PB 2:14:20) and debutant Mikhail Petertsev, Ukranian Oleksandr Matviychuk (2:12:53), Aleh Hur (2:17:26) from Belarus, Kenyan Evans Kipkorir Taiget and South African Othaniel Sefako Phahlane - all failed to finish.
In their absence, Russian and Kazakh amateur runners got a chance to contest for places on the podium. In his first race over the distance, Russian Nikolay Grigorov was the surprise winner in 2:49:06.
Yelena Kurdyumova and Sergey Porada for the IAAF
Leading Results - Women 1.Olha Mazurenok, BLR 2:44:47 2. Alena Vinnitskaya, BLR 3:00:32 3. Yulia Smirnova, RUS 3:11:43 4. Rebecca Jerotich, KEN 3:16:18
Men 1. Nikolay Grigorov, RUS 2:49:06 2. Alexander Kolonda, KZH 2:57:28 3. Alexander Zoryanov, RUS 2:57:59