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Defending Champions Kiprotich And Tola Return To Vienna

  • By Duncan Larkin
  • Published Mar. 23, 2012
  • Updated Mar. 23, 2012 at 7:09 AM UTC
Fate Tola breaks the tape at last year's Vienna Marathon. Photo: Vienna Marathon.com

Austria’s largest marathon takes place on April 15.

All the press may be on the signing of superstars Paula Radcliffe and Haile Gebrselassie to take part in the Vienna Half Marathon, but what may be getting overlooked is the race’s fiercely competitive marathon event.

Former champions John Kiprotich of Kenya and Fate Tola of Ethiopia will return to the race next month. An additional four previous winners will be taking part as well.

The fastest male runner in the field thus far is Gilbert Kirwa who boasts a 2:06:14 marathon PR. He was originally slated to run against Haile Gebrselassie at the Tokyo Marathon this February, but wasn’t deemed fit enough.

In the women’s race, Tola appears to be the clear favorite. Last year, the Ethiopian upset the field to win over Portugal’s Ana Dulce Felix and Peninah Arusei of Kenya.

She currently owns a 2:26:21 personal best and currently trains with German marathon star Irina Mikitenko in Albuquerque, USA.

Tola will be competing against  Luminita Talpos of Romania who won the race in 2007 and 2008.

For More: IAAF

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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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