Prague, Czech Republic, May 06—Galen Rupp’s big spring marathon was supposed to be Boston on April 16, but the cold & wet conditions induced hypothermic symptoms and an asthma attack which caused him to drop out after 30km.
A couple of weeks later Rupp’s coach, Alberto Salazar, explaining why his charge was off to Prague, told Ken Goe of the Portland Oregonian, “I don’t think he’s too tired. He thinks he feels better.”
Rupp anticipated heavy competition from Sisay Lemma, who had PRed at 2:04:08 in January’s fast Dubai race. The 27-year-old Ethiopian provided that, as the two ran side-by-side from the start. It wasn’t until the final 4km that the 32-year-old American cranked up the pace.
It wasn’t close at the finish as Rupp moved from No. 6 to No. 2 on the all-time U.S. list with his 2:06:07, almost a minute up on Lemma’s 2:07:03.
“Sisay is a really great marathon runner,” said Rupp, who became the first American ever to win in the Czech capital. “It was no easy feat and I’m really pleased I managed to defeat him and win. I tried to keep a check on my pace, to get into it and stay positive.”
On the women’s side, Kenyan Bornes Kitur chopped more than 4:00 off her PR in scoring a 2:24:19 win.
Prague, Czech Republic, May 06 (loop)—
Men: 1. Galen Rupp (US) 2:06:07 PR (2, 3 A) (1:03:02/1:03:05) (€45,000);
2. Sisay Lemma (Eth) 2:07:02; 3. Stephen Chemlany (Ken) 2:09:42; 4. Barselius Kipyego (Ken) 2:10:18 PR; 5. Yuma Hattori (Jpn) 2:10:26; 6. Mekuant Ayenew (Eth) 2:10:42;… dnf—Asefa Tefera (Eth), Worku Bazu (Eth), Belay Tilahun (Eth);… rabbit—Gilbert Masai (Ken) (1:03:00).
Women: 1. Bornes Kitur (Ken) 2:24:19 (€45,000); 2. Belaynesh Oljira (Eth) 2:25:13; 3. Amane Gobena (Eth) 2:27:43; 4. Risper Chebet (Ken) 2:29:32; 5. Susan Jeptoo (Ken) 2:30:50; 6. Flomena Chepchirchir (Ken) 2:32:10;… dnf—Koren Jelela Yal (Eth), Sara Moreira (Por).