Embu brothers Elijah Mbogo and Daniel Mbogo extended their rich vein of form at the Safaricom Lewa Marathon as they finished first and fourth respectively at the 16th edition of the event held over the weekend.
It was the first time for Elijah to win the marathon in three attempts, having placed second in both the 2013 and 2014 editions.
There was also history being made at the event as defending champion Fridah Lodepa successfully retained her title to become the first female athlete to score a hat-trick in the punishing weather conditions of Isiolo and only the second to reach that feat after Baaru. Baaru won the 2012, 2013 and 2014 but was unable to persevere Saturday’s conditions as he bowed out of the event despite taking charge of the leading pack at the early stages on the dusty terrain.
Elijah won in 2:20:18 followed by Moses Wamaitha (2:23:21), Cyprian Kiogora (2:24:54), Daniel (2:25:38), Philip Kigen (2:31:35) and Stephen Kiptwang (2:37:48). Elijah said it had been painful to play second fiddle to Baaru twice and was determined to make amends.
Daniel, who won the event in 2011 and finished third in 2012 and 2013, said the brotherly rivalry has kept them going, especially during their training at the high altitude county of Embu, their home ground. “Our main focus is to make history by registering a 1-2 finish at Lewa and personally I also want to lower my 2:18:48 course record to at least 2:15,” said Daniel.
Lodepa won the women’s race in 2:50:26 followed Monica Njeru (2:52:58), Ripsa Lagat (2:53:25), Alice Nyawira (3:00:25), Wambugu Karungari (3:15:18) and Naomi Wambui (3:40:25). Lodepa was over the moon as she reminisced on her achievements, smiling coyly at her coach and husband, whom she trains with in Iten.
“It’s such a nice feeling to win the event for three consecutive times. The competition was a little bit easier than last year and this worked well for me,” said Lodepa, the 2014 Mombasa Marathon winner. “I will continue with my training as I focus on lowering my personal best of 2:34:18 in the near future.”
Courtesy of the-star.co.ke