Kenya’s Edwin Kipsang Rotich and Maurine Jelagat Kipchumba won at the 88th edition of the Corrida Internacional de São Silvestre, the classical race over 15km that marks the end of the year in the streets of São Paulo, on Monday (31).
Kipsang Rotich’s winning time was 44:05 and Kepchumba’s 51:42.
Kipsang Rotich, 24, who has been competing in South America regularly in 2012 (winning 10km races in Curitiba and Rio de Janeiro in September and November), was among the leaders from the early stages of the race, along with compatriots Joseph Aperumoi and Mark Korir.
The trio went on to make it an all-Kenyan podium, with Kipsang Rotich winning from Aperumoi by nine seconds and Korir a further seven second further back, while Giovani dos Santos was the best Brazilian in fourth place.
“it was a tough race, with plenty of hills, which are not my forte; I was able to set a strong pace and to put on a strong finish, where I won the event,” said Kipsang Rotich after becoming the first Kenyan runner to win the São Silvestre race since his namesake James Kipsang in 2009.
Kenyan men have won the São Silvestre race five times in the past 10 years.
In the women’s race, the early pace was set by the Brazilian pair of Marily dos Santos and Larissa Quintão but a group of African runners soon grabbed control of the race before Kipchumba went away on her own and won by a comfortable margin of 29 seconds.
At the classical uphill stretch, at 14km, along Avenue ‘Brigadeiro Luíz Antônio’, Kepchumba lost some ground but still won by a good margin. “I wasn’t expecting the victory”, said Kipchumba. “The pace was good and I felt very comfortable, so I’m very glad it was my day.”
Kipchumba, also 24, was returning to Brazil after victory in the 18.6km Volta de Pampulha in Belo Horizonte in early December.
It was her first victory at Sao Silvestre but the fourth consecutive for Kenyan athletes. Tatiele de Carvalho was the best Brazilian and the best non-African runner in sixth place.
More than 25000 runners took place in the event, held this year at an earlier time, with friendly conditions of 23°C and 76% humidity.
Eduardo Biscayart for the IAAF
1. Edwin Kipsang Rotich (KEN) 44:05
2. Joseph Aperumoi (KEN) 44:14
3. Mark Korir (KEN) 44:21
4. Giovani dos Santos (BRA) 44:51
5. Hafid Chani (MAR) 45:55
6. Najim El Qady (MAR) 46:34
7. Alphonce Felix Simbu (TAN) 46:37
8. Ubiratan José dos Santos (BRA) 46:38
9. Ahmed Baday (MAR) 46:40
10. Paulo Roberto de Almeida Paula (BRA) 46:49
1. Maurine Kipchumba (KEN) 51:42
2. Jackline Juma Sakilu (TAN) 52:11
3. Rumokol Chepkanan KEN 52:50
4. Fekede Negede (ETH) 53:36
5. Anastazia Ghamaa (TAN) 53:42
6. Tatiele Carvalho (BRA) 54:10
7. Sueli Pereira da Silva (BRA) 54:19
8. Nancy Jepkosgei Kipron (KEN) 54:41
9. Roselaine de Sousa Silva (BRA) 55:09
10. Marizete Moreira dos Santos (BRA) 55:34