Cramps, Wind & Hills Slow Twin Cities Marathoners

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


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

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.

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