Kenyan-born Israeli Runner Lonah Salpeter Wins Tokyo Marathon

Israeli athlete's time was the sixth best result ever in the women's marathon; she set a new women's record for the course of 2 hours, 17 minutes and 45 seconds

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Kenyan-Israeli runner Lonah Chemtai Salpeter reacts as she crosses the Finish line at the Tokyo Marathon 2020.
Kenyan-Israeli runner Lonah Chemtai Salpeter reacts as she crosses the Finish line at the Tokyo Marathon 2020.Credit: AFP

Lonah Chemtai Salpeter won the Tokyo Marathon Sunday morning, setting a new women’s record for the course of 2 hours, 17 minutes and 45 seconds and winning $125,000.

She shaved 2 minutes, 1 second over the Israeli record, which she set herself.

Bibi went gunning for his only real rivalCredit: Haaretz Weekly Ep. 66

The Israeli runner’s time was the sixth best result ever in the women’s marathon.

Chemtai Salpeter, who was born in Kenya, beat Ethiopian marathoners Birhane Dibaba and Asefa Kebede in Tokyo.

Sunday’s race was a promising test of her mettle in advance of the Tokyo Olympic Games this summer, where she is expected to focus on the marathon.

Sunday’s marathon was held in the capital, but the Olympics marathon will be held in Sapporo, Hokkaido, a city about 800 kilometers from Tokyo.

“I’m very pleased with today’s performances, my preparation enabled me to improve my personal record. I feel that the result today is paying me back for all the hard work that was done in recent months,” said Chemtai Salpeter after the race.

“Unfortunately, in the last two marathons I couldn’t express myself on the day of the race, but today all the conditions were perfect here in Tokyo.

“I so much wanted to win here and to achieve a new personal record, that I ran as fast as possible. In the end I reached first place and won the marathon.”

In September, Chemtai Salpeter collapsed during the marathon at the World Athletics Championships in Doha, Qatar, in heat of 28 degrees Celsius (82 degrees Fahrenheit) and 76 percent humidity.

She collapsed on the course after some 32 kilometers of the 42.2 km. race. Only 36 of the 68 contestants completed the course.

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