"Ethiopian runners dominate Tokyo Marathon as Kenyan athlete wins women's race"

Deso Gelmisa of Ethiopia, center, crosses the finish line, winning the men’s race of Tokyo Marathon, followed by his compatriot Mohamed Esa, left, Sunday, March 5, 2023, in Tokyo, Japan.(Zhang Xiaoyu/Pool Photo via AP)

TOKYO | Deso Gelmisa of Ethiopia led an Ethiopian clean sweep of the podium at the Tokyo Marathon on Sunday, winning his first World Marathon Major by one second ahead of compatriot Mohamed Esa with a time of 2:05:22. Tsegaya Getachew finished third, two seconds further back. Canadian Cam Levins led a group of five runners at the 39-kilometer mark, but Gelmisa sprinted away with 400 meters remaining to claim victory. Levins finished fifth at 2:05:36 to break the long-standing North American record of 2:05:38 at the flat Tokyo course.

In the women's race, Kenya’s Rosemary Wanjiru triumphed, crossing the line 28 seconds ahead of Ethiopia’s Tsehay Gemechu for her first major win. Ashete Bekeri, last year’s runners-up finished third, 2:43 behind Wanjiru. Swiss pair Marcel Hug and Manuela Schar won the wheelchair titles and set new course records. Defending champion Hug won in 1:20:57, nearly four minutes faster than his time last year. Schar won the women’s race in 1:36:43.

The Tokyo Marathon is an annual marathon race held in Tokyo, Japan, usually on the last Sunday in February. The event is one of the top six world marathons, and it is the largest marathon in Asia, with around 38,000 participants in 2020. The event was canceled in 2021 due to the COVID-19 pandemic, and this year's race was held under strict safety protocols, including limiting the number of participants and banning spectators at the start and finish lines.


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