On a day of warm temperatures, blue skies and a slight breeze, Daba Bekana won the Carlsbad 5000 on Sunday as Ethiopian men finished 1-2-3 in the 5K road race. Aheza Kiros of Ethiopia won the women’s race, edging out U.S. Olympian Shannon Rowbury.
Bekana made his move with 300 meters remaining, outsprinting his countryman Abreham Cherkos, finishing in 13:19 and with defending champion Margue Zewendi clocked at 13:24 to complete the Ethiopian sweep. Cherkos competed in last year’s Olympic Games in Beijing, finishing fifth in the 5,000m.
“The race was good today and I’m happy I won,” said Bekana. “This is my first 5K road race, I was just trying to compete and stay with the leaders.”
American Anthony Famigletti just missed Marc Davis’ 13-year-old American record, finishing in sixth place overall in a time of 13:28.
“It was just too little too late over the last 600 meters,” said Famigletti, competing for the first time in Carlsbad. “This is a fun place to race and the aggressive world class field was one of a kind. Now that I know the course I’ll have a better shot at the record next year. It was a good experience overall and a good start to the outdoor track season.”
In the women’s race, Kiros used a final kick to earn first place over American Shannon Rowbury, by a mere 3 seconds with a time of 15:38. The Ethiopian started to make her move at the final turn and was able to keep a slim lead to the finish line on Carlsbad Village Drive.
“I was confident I could hold her off,” said Kiros, 25, on the final sprint to the finish line.
Kiros and Rowbury were stride for stride over the last 200 meters, but Kiros had more speed in the end.
“It was a sunny day and the crowd was awesome,” said Rowbury, who will race next in Berkley, CA on April 25.
The 24th annual race, known for its 16 world record legacy and beautiful seaside course, kicked off the morning with the Men’s Masters (40+) race at 7:05 am. Throughout the two-day event, fans and families mingled between the Expo, live bands and beer garden, as 12,000 runners, junior races and wheelchairs completed the 5K distance and celebrated their accomplishments in style.
The Carlsbad 5000 will celebrate its 25th anniversary on April 11, 2010. For more information, please visit www.carlsbad5000.com.
Elite Men – MEN
1. Daba Bekana, Ethiopia 13:19 (pictured)
2. Abreham Cherkos, Ethiopia 13:19
3. Maregu Zewdie, Ethiopia 13:24
4. Ali Abdosh, Ethiopia 13:25
5. Collis Birmingham, Australia 13:27
Elite Women – WOMEN
1. Aheza Kiros, Ethiopia 15:38 (pictured)
2. Shannon Rowbury, United States 15:41
3. Lara Tamsett, Australia 15:42
4. Katie McGregor, United States 15:58
5. Jane Kibii, Kenya 16:04
Masters Men 40 +
1. Christian Cushing-Murray, 41, Santa Ana, CA 14:55
2. Alejandro Salvador, 42, Newport Beach, CA 14:57
3. Simon Gutierrez, 42, Alamosa, CO 14:58
Masters Women 40+
1. Sylvia Mosqueda, 42, Los Angeles, CA 16:56
2. Tania Fischer, 43, Santa Monica, CA 17:18
3. Patty Murray-Albo, 43, Boulder, CO 17:34
1. Nazario Romero, 35, Escondido, CA 14:51
2. James Lander, 30, Whittier, CA 14:58
3. Neal Harder, 32, San Diego, CA 15:12
1. Joey Bonfiglio, 32, Carlsbad, CA 16:55
2. Michelle Resendez, 34, Mesa, CA 17:35
3. Cambria D’Amico, 30, Redondo Beach, CA 17:55
Wheelchair – Men
1. Scott Parson, 49, 10:37
2. Chad Johnson, 33, Charleston, IN 12:20
3. Adam Schmuki, 18, Phoenix, AZ 12:21
Wheelchair – Women
1. Sandra Rush, 47, Oceanside, CA 17:15
2. Deanna Sodoma, 41,Escondido, CA 18:14
3. Jodi Davis, 29, Queen Creek, AZ 33:46