Nebsi Wins Ukrop’s Monument Avenue 10K

Mengistu Nebsi breaks the tape in 28:33.

Melika Mejdou of Morocco won the women’s race.

From: Running USA

RICHMOND, Va. — The 13th Ukrop’s Monument Avenue 10K presented by MARTIN’S went off with a bang this Saturday morning with more than 40,600 participants. Ethiopia’s Mengistu Nebsi, 34, beat out defending champion Julius Kogo for first place with a time of 28 minutes, 33 seconds. Kogo clocked in at 28:42, which was nearly 20 seconds faster than his 2011 time of 29:02. Benson Cheruiyot of Kenya (29:09) captured third place.

Melika Mejdou, 29 of Morocco was the top overall female finisher in 33:07. Following closely behind her were Hellen Jemutai (33:07) of Kenya and Charlottesville’s Rachel Ward (33:22). Two-time returning champion Megan Wright pulled out of the race at the last minute due to an illness.

Although Nebsi and Mejdoub finished atop the standings, leading the pack today was AT&T Dash for the Cash contestant Melissa Phillips, a 26-year-old Richmond resident. Phillips was selected at random from over 28,000 people registered for the Ukrop’s Monument Avenue 10K by February 1, and was given a 2.27-mile head start based on her past race results. She took home the $2500 prize after beating out the professional runners to the finish line by only 27 seconds. This is the fifth year in a row that the AT&T Dash for the Cash contestant claimed the prize.

Prize money was also awarded to the top three males and females that live and train in the Richmond area. Andrew Benford (30:41),Charlie Hurt (31:14) and Jon Molz (31:28) were atop the local finishers on the men’s side, while Maria Elena Calle (34:19), Julie Rechel (35:19) and Jenn Ennis (38:19) took home the prize money on the women’s side.

In addition to the 40,638 10K participants, 1,857 children ages 5-12 participating in the Virginia 529 Kids Run.

Thirty-five bands performed today along the 6.2-mile course, providing entertainment to all in attendance. An all-time record of 24 spirit groups rallied participants with cheers and encouragement through Hirschler Fleischer’s spirit contest. And a total of 149 individuals ran in costume for the Richmond Times-Dispatch Dress Up & Run contest.

The 2013 Ukrop’s Monument Avenue 10K presented by MARTIN’S will take place on Saturday, April 13. Registration is scheduled to open on December 1, 2012.

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