New Delhi, Sep 12 : Kenya’s 10,000m World Championships silver medalist Daniel Ebenyo and 2017 Delhi half-marathon victor Almaz Ayana (Ethiopia) will headline the preliminary elite athletes in the men’s and women’s categories at the 18th Vedanta Delhi Half Marathon, a World Athletics Gold Label Road Race, here on October 15.
The USD 268,000 prize money will see tens of thousands of amateurs join the world’s best elites on one of the fastest courses in the world.
The International Elite winners in the men’s and women’s categories will take home USD 27,000 each and the prize money includes the top 10 finishers in both.In addition to this, there is an Event Record Bonus of USD 12,000.
Almaz Ayana, the 2016 Olympic 10,000m champion who won two back-to-back World titles in 2015 (5,000m) and 2017 (10,000m) ran an excellent race on the roads of Delhi to triumph in the 13th edition of the annual sporting extravaganza which commenced in 2005.
The Ethiopian, who clocked a personal best 1:05:30 earlier this year to win in Lisbon and finished seventh at the full distance in the London Marathon thereafter, is now eying for the Delhi course record of 1:04:46 held by country-mate Yalemzerf Yehualaw since 2020.
Ebenyo, the World Championships silver medalist, who finished sixth in the World cross-country championships held in Bathurst (Australia) in early 2023 already posted a personal best time of 59:04 at the half-marathon distance last year in Manama.The timing is very close to the Delhi course record of 58:53 and hence is coming into the Delhi Half Marathon with high expectations.
Also from Kenya, Roncer Konga (59:08), Leonard Barsoton (59:09), Isaac Kipkemboi (59:17) and Isaiyah Lasoi (59:27) besides Ethiopian Tesfahun Akalnew (59:22) are eager to provide a keen contest in the upcoming race.
Incidentally, Barsoton and Akalnew finished fifth and sixth respectively at Delhi three years ago and will try to make it to the podium in 2023.
In the women’s race, Ayana will have major competition from her young colleague Betelihem Afenigus.The latter, who is just 22 years old has already taken part in five half-marathon races this year and holds a Personal Best of 1:06:46 that she recorded after finishing second at Paris in March.
Kenyan Viola Chepngeno, who has run eight elite half-marathon races to date and clocked 1:06:48 at Berlin 2022 will be another runner to watch out for.
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