Report Florence, Italy

Dominant day for Ethiopia at Florence Marathon

Negesse Shumi breaks 2:10 in Florence (Florence Marathon organisers)Negesse Shumi breaks 2:10 in Florence (Florence Marathon organisers) © Copyright

26 November 2012 – Florence, Italy - Ethiopian Endeshaw Negesse Shumi broke the 2:10 barrier for the first time in his career to take the win at the 29th edition of the Firenze Marathon in 2:09:59 held in ideal weather conditions on Sunday (25).

Ethiopia claimed a winning sweep with last year’s winner Birhanu Berga Bekele second in 2:10:38 and Asefa Habtamu Wakeyo, third in 2:10:55.

Ethiopia also dominated the women’s race where Shuru Diriba Dulume won at a canter in 2:30:08 with a margin of more than four minutes over Janat Hanane (2:34:21). Johanna Kykyri from Finland took a distant third place in 2:38:27.

Men’s race -

Former Swedish steeplechaser Mohamed Mustafa, who finished fourth at the 2007 World Championships in Osaka and clocked 8:05.75 in the 3000m Steeplechase, took the early lead and kept a solid gap of 45 seconds at 5 km (split time 15:35). Mohamed went through the 10 km in 30:58 and the 15 km in 46:39. At this point he was leading by 38 seconds over the chase group which featured Negsesse Shumi, Birhanu Berga, Yakob Kintra and Asefa Wakeyo Habtamu.

Mohamed led until the 21 km mark clocking 1:05:40 and at 25 km (1:17:49) Shumi, Berga and Wakeyo caught up with the Swede. A quartet continued to run at the front until the 35 km when Shumi, Wakeyo and Berga dropped Mohamed whose early pace began to take its toll.

At 38 km Shumi surged and broke away from his two compatriots and romped home in 2:09:59 in his second Marathon race. In his debut last March the 22-year-old Shumi clocked 2:12:14.

“I knew that Mohamed would not keep his pace and I realised that I could win the race at 30 km. It was my second race. I found the Rome course more difficult than Florence,” he said.   

Women’s race -

Two Ethiopians, Shuru Diriba Dulume and last year’s Firenze Marathon winner Asha Gigi Roba, kept the early pace going through the 5 km in 17:54 and the 10 km in 35:24. Janat Hanane chased in third place in 35:59.

Dulume pushed the pace reaching the 15 km in 53:00. She opened up a gap of 53 seconds over Hanane who overtook Roba for second place.

At the halfway mark Dulume clocked 1:14:55 with a margin of 1:03 over Hanane, a margin she gradually added to over the second half.

Dulume kept a sub-2:30 pace until the 40 km (2:22:09). She slowed down in the final two kilometres but held on to win comfortably in 2:30:08. 

Diego Sampaolo for the IAAF

Leading Results:

Men -

 1. Endeshaw Negesse Shumi (Ethiopia) 2:09:59

 2. Birhanu Bekele Berga (Ethiopia) 2:10:38

 3. Asefa Habtamu Wakeyo (Ethiopia) 2:10:55

 4. Mohamed Mustafa (Sweden) 2:12:34

 5. Yakob Yarso Kintra (Ethiopia) 2:13:40

Women -

 1. Shuru Diriba Dulume (Ethiopia) 2:30:08

 2. Janat Hanane (Morocco) 2:34:21

 3. Johanna Kyryri (Ethiopia) 2:38:27