Ethiopian Kasaye Sisay Lemma took the honours unopposed in 2:11:58 at the 25th edition of the Maratona d’Italia in Carpi on Sunday (14).
On the women’s side 39-year-old Ivana Iozzia won the race in 2:35:08 over 21-year-old Ethiopian Megersa Tafa Megertu (2:38:41) and claimed her third Italian Marathon title after Padua 2005 and Rome 2007.
The men’s national title went to 43-year-old Marathon veteran Migidio Bourifa crossed the finish-line in 2:20:45 to claim his fourth title after Rome 2007, Treviso 2009 and Venice 2010.
The Carpi race was held on a new course which was changed completely as a consequence of the tragic earthquake which hit Emilia Romagna, the region where Carpi is situated, last May. The race started from Corso Alberto Pio near the City Hall in Carpi and crossed the neighbouring towns of Modena and Soliera before returning to Carpi with the finish-line located near the local football stadium Cabassi.
Lemma and pacemaker Kemboi Kipkemboi took the lead with Bourifa in the early stages going through the 5 km in 15:59, the 10 km in 31:58. Bourifa was dropped at 15 km when Kipkemboi and Lemma surged the pace with a couple of 3:04 splits. Lemma and Kipkemboi increased their gap on Bourifa to three minutes at the 25 km mark which they reached in 1:18:24. Lemma remained alone going through 30 km in 1:34:03 after Kipkemboi dropped out. Lemma increased the pace without opposition reaching the 35 km mark in 1:49:12 and romped home to become the first Ethiopian runner to winner in the 25 editions of the Carpi Marathon.
The women’s race featured a battle between Iozzia and Megertu who went through the 21 km in 1:16:25 and ran side by side until the 27 km when the young Ethiopian pulled away dropping Iozzia by about 100 metres. Iozzia did not give up and managed to catch up at 32 km. The Italian runner broke away shortly afterwards building up a gap of 200 metres and went on to win in 2:35:08. Megersa finished a distant runner-up in 2:38:41.
"I had some problems at 27 km when Tafa dropped me but I managed to recover well and caught her up," Iozzia said. "This win represents a new beginning after a liver operation this year."
Leading results from the Maratona d’Italia in Carpi: Men - 1. Kasaye Sisay Lemma (Ethiopia) 2:11:58 2. Migidio Bourifa (Italy) 2:20:45 3. Massimiliano Brigo (Italy) 2:24:09
Women - 1. Ivana Iozzia (Italy) 2:35:08 2. Tafa Megersa Megertu (Ethiopia) 2:38:41 3. Martina Rocco (Italy) 2:46:09
Fourth Trento win for Soi
Edwin Soi, the 5000m Olympic bronze medallist in Beijing 2008 and 2012 World Indoor bronze medallist in the 3000m, scored his fourth win at the Giro di Trento International race on Saturday (13) clocking 28:43.
The 26-year-old Kenyan held off this year’s 5000m World Junior champion Muktar Edris from Ethiopia by two seconds in the final sprint, who in turn was three seconds clear of Thomas Longosiwa, the Olympic bronze medallist in the 5000m in London.
Former European Junior and Under 23 Cross Country champion Andrea Lalli managed to keep up with the leaders until the middle of the race when they injected a pair of 2:46 kilometre splits. On the final lap the African trio formed by Soi, Edris and Longosiwa launched their attack breaking away from Lalli, whose race was rewarded by a solid fourth place in 28:59.
Lalli will leave to Kenya for a training period in preparation for the European Cross Country Championships next December. As the first Italian Lalli won the Memorial Cosimo Caliandro dedicated to the 2007 European Indoor champion in the 3000m who died in a tragic car accident in June 2011. Italian Daniele Meucci, European silver medallist in the 10,000m in Helsinki last June, crossed the finish-line in seventh place in 29:24. Kenyan Mark Bett, a 26:52.93 runner in the 10,000m, finished seventh in 29:31 in the last race of his career.
Leading Results - 1. Edwin Soi (Kenya) 28:43 2. Muktar Edrs (Ethiopia) 28:45 3. Thomas Longosiwa (Kenya) 28:48 4. Andrea Lalli (Italy) 28:59 5. Robert Chemosin (Kenya) 29:11 6. Daniele Meucci (Italy) 29:24 7. Mark Bett (Kenya) 29:31 8. Stefano La Rosa (Italy) 29:35 9. Simon Cheprot (Kenya) 29:36 10. Sergey Lebid (Ukraine) 29:37