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Cramps, Wind & Hills Slow Twin Cities Marathoners

  • By Duncan Larkin
  • Published Oct. 3, 2011
  • Updated Oct. 3, 2011 at 11:40 AM UTC
Despite his cramps, Sammy Malakwen of Kenya was victorious at yesterday's Twin Cities Marathon. Photo: Twin Cities.com

Marathon conditions were hardly optimal in Minneapolis-St. Paul yesterday.

Despite his cramps, Sammy Malakwen of Kenya was victorious at yesterday's Twin Cities Marathon. Photo: Twin Cities.com

For most big-city marathons, the elite East Africans come across the finish line–fast as ever–and then the rest of the throng eventually makes their way to the end. The East Africans comment about the tactical aspects of the race, while the remainder of participants usually comment about something else.

Photo Gallery: 2011 Twin Cities Marathon & USA 10-Mile Championship

At Sunday’s Medtronic Twin Cities Marathon, both groups were talking about the same thing: the conditions and the struggles fighting them.

For the overall winner, Sammy Malakwen of Kenya, the race was a struggle against his own body–cramps that he began to encounter halfway through the race. Despite them, he completed the 26.2 miles in a blazing 2 hours 13 minutes and eleven seconds. Fellow Kenyans Joseph Mutinda, 37, 2:13:24, and Weldon Kirui, 22, 2:13:31 were second and third respectively.

Malakwen said he made his move with just a mile to go. ”They resisted for one mile. The last mile, they didn’t resist, and I was on my own,” he said.

In the women’s race,  Yeshimebet Bifa was victorious in 2:28:24. She complained about the vicious headwinds that she encountered in the last 10 miles.

For More: Twin Cities.com

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Duncan Larkin

Duncan Larkin

Duncan Larkin is the news editor at Competitor.com 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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