Near-freezing temperatures slowed runners down.
Ethiopia’s Tariku Jufar was the first person to cross the finish line at the Beijing Marathon in China on Sunday.
The 26.2-mile contest is an IAAF Gold-label race and Jufar’s finishing time was an impressive two hours, nine minutes, and 39 seconds.
The race was held in freezing conditions–later than normal in the season–and this change made things hard for the runners.
Jufar didn’t establish himself as the leader early on. Up to the half-marathon point, the front runner had been Kenya’s Emmanuel Samal. After that, (approximately 28 kilometers), it was Eliud Kiptanui who led.
Kiptanui sports an impressive resume with a 2:05 marathon and a top-six showing at the IAAF World Championships to his credit. Jufar seized the lead at the 35K mark. The 28-year-old won the 2012 edition of the Houston Marathon with a 2:06:51 personal best.
Kiptanui was second in 2:10:15.
In the women’s race, hometown favorite Jia Chaofeng was first in 2:27:40.
Approximately 30,000 runners took to the streets of China’s capital city.
For More: IAAF