Kenya’s Joyce Njeru and Geoffrey Ndungu won the 6th edition of the World Mountain Running Association (WMRA) World Cup as they took the two podium finishes for both genders at Krkonossky Half Marathon that was held on Sunday (15) in Janske Lazne, Czech Republic.
The conditions were already hot as the runners set off at 9am, and they were only going to get hotter. Right from the start three men formed a group and it was Timothy Kurui, Ndungu and Marek Chrascina. The three ran together for the first 6km, emerging at the first checkpoint neck and neck. In the women’s race Njeru struck out alone, opening up a gap to Barbora Macurova and Pavla Matyasova. Njeru had put 1 minute and 50 seconds of daylight between her and Macurova, who in turn had a 10-second gap to Matyasova at the 6km point.
By the tiem they reached the 15km mark, the top three men were still together, with Timotej Becan, Evans Kiptum and Jiri Cipa chasing hard, but Ndungu had clearly decided that enough was enough and started to pull away from the two.
Ndungu pulled away and managed to open a gap between the two chasers and crossed the line in 1:32.30, with Kirui coming in second in just under a minute behind in 1:33.22. Chrascina closed the the podium three first finishes in 1:33.35.
In the final stages of the women’s race Macurova tried to close the with Njeru but she pulled off a surprise kick to cut the tape in 1:50.02, with Macurova just 25 seconds behind her. Matyasova took the bronze in 1:52.45.
- Ndungu Geoffrey Gikuni (KEN) 1:32.30
- Kirui Timothy Kimutai (KEN) 1:33.222
- Chrascina Marek (CZE) 1:33.35
- Njeru Joyce Muthoni (KEN) 1:50.02
- Macurová Barbora (CZE) 1:50.27
- Schorná Matyášová Pavla (CZE) 1:52.45