08 OCT 2012 General News

Tola looking for course record and to end Kenya's winning streak in Eindhoven

Tadesse Tola improves all the way to 2:06:23 to take the 2010 Paris Marathon (Getty Images)Tadesse Tola improves all the way to 2:06:23 to take the 2010 Paris Marathon (Getty Images) © Copyright
Ethiopia's Tadesse Tola will be looking to improve his personal best and also the course record on his return to the De Lage Landen Marathon Eindhoven this coming Sunday (14).

Tola, 24, was fourth last year in the Dutch city in 2:07:13 but improved his personal best in January when finishing second at the Dubai Marathon to 2:05:10.

The current Marathon Eindhoven course record is held by Kenya's Jafred Kipchumba who clocked 2:05:48 on the fast two-lap circuit in 2011.

Tola brings to Marathon Eindhoven - an IAAF Silver Label Road Race - a wealth of experience on all surfaces, having run three times in the World Cross Country Championships and also in the 2007 World Championships 10,000m final on the track.

Eindhoven will be the seventh Marathon of his career since he started to concentrate on the classic distance in 2009, his one victory so far having come at the 2009 Paris Marathon.

If Tola crosses the line first then it will bring to an end a Kenyan streak which stretches back 14 years. The last man other than a Kenyan to win in Eindhoven was Poland's Gregorz Gadjus in 1998 although there were Ethiopian victories in 1994 and 1996.

Tola is one of three men who have run under 2:07 in this year's field, with another three having also gone under 2:08 in their careers.

Among the men trying to keep the Kenyan flag flying high for the 14th successive year will be Eric Ndiema.

Ndiema, still only 19, is one of the new generation of marathon runners who have moved up to the distance without any significant track pedigree.

He ran 2:06:07 on his debut for the Marathon when finishing third in the Amsterdam Marathon last October, the best time ever by a junior (Note: official records in the Marathon for juniors are not recognised), and followed it up with a run of 2:06:37 for fourth place n the Paris Marathon back in April.

Just one place in front of Ndiema in the French capital six months ago was Tola's compatriot Sisay Jisa.

Jisa ran 2:06:27 for another impressive Marathon debut and will be ambitious to go much faster in his second outing over the distance.

Organisers for the IAAF