Mary Keitany Smashes Half-Marathon World Record

  • By Duncan Larkin
  • Published Feb. 18, 2011
  • Updated Feb. 18, 2011 at 9:28 AM UTC
Mary Keitany now owns the half-marathon world record. Photo: IAAF

Mary Keitany now owns the half-marathon world record. Photo: IAAF

She stands a good chance of setting a marathon record in April.

Mary Keitany of Kenya now owns the world record for the half marathon. She completed this incredible feat at the Ras Al Khaimah Half Marathon in the United Arab Emirates on Friday where she ran 1:05:50 for the 13.1-mile distance.The previous record, 1:06:25, belonged to Lornah Kiplagat who set it at the 2007 World Championships in Italy.

The race was especially lucrative for Keitany who pocketed a total of $75,000 for her feat ($25,000 for winning the race and $50,000 for setting a new world record).

Race-day conditions were ideal for Keitany with a slight breeze coming from the east. Keitany’s win was decisive with Ethiopia’s Dire Tune coming in second a full three minutes behind her.

Keitany, 29, is expected to race the Virgin London Marathon in April.

In the men’s race, former Boston Marathon champion Deriba Merga won with an impressive 59:25. Second-place finisher Bernard Kipyego of Kenya arrived 20 seconds behind the Ethiopian winner. Merga’s race on Friday was his seventh sub-hour half marathon.

For More: IAAF

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Duncan Larkin

Duncan Larkin

Duncan Larkin is the news editor at and a freelance journalist who’s been covering the sport of running for over five years. He’s run 2:32 in the marathon and won the Himalayan 100-Mile Stage Race in 2007. His first running book, RUN SIMPLE, was released last July.

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