Tag Archives: Antrim Coast Half Marathon

Yalemzerf Yehualaw to defend her title at Antrim Coast Half Marathon

The 2020 World half marathon bronze medallist champion, Yalemzerf Yehualaw will defend her title at the Antrim Coast Half Marathon which according to the organisers they promise the course will be accurate this time after the 2021 short-course.

The 22 year-old last September set what appeared to be a world record of 1:03.43 before it transpired the course was 54 metres short. Then, in the Great Ethiopian Run this month, she seemingly clocked an African all-comers’ record of 30:14 at high altitude in Addis Ababa, only to see the time adjusted to 31:17 due to a timing error.

Yehualaw hopes things will start going in her favor this year and on August 28 she competes again in Antrim Coast Half Marathon, a World Athletics Elite Label race.

The race director James McIlroy said: ‘The one name we wanted back after last year’s unratified world record was Yalemzerf – and to get this news at the beginning of the season means so much. She loves the course, the people and the support she got last year along the route really spurred her on, so to have her confirm that she’s returning to the province is very special.

“As it stands, she has run four of the seven fastest all-time half marathons and just last week she ran the fastest ever 10km at altitude in winning the Great Ethiopian Run against some of the best distance runners in the world. At 22 years old she’s got so much more to come.”

Yehualaw’s ratified half-marathon best is 1:03.51 that she set in Valencia last year. Her fellow country-mate Letesenbet Gidey is the only one athlete has run quicker over the 13.1-mile distance when she set the world record-hold over the distance of 1:02.52 that she also set in Valencia last year.

Yalemzerf Yehualaw’s progression

(Half Marathon)
2019: 1:06.01
2020: 1:04.46
2021: 1:03.44

World Half Marathon Record By Yalemzerf Yehualaw Will Not Be Ratified

Ethiopia’s Yalemzerf Yehualaw world record time of 1:03.43 will not be ratified byWorld Athletics as the World Record due to the course being short by 54 metres.

Through her management the NN Running Team, said during the pre-race elite conference for Valencia Half Marathon that will be held tomorrow.

Yehaulaw took 18 seconds off the previous world record of 1:04.02 set by Ruth Chepngetich from Kenya early this year at the Istanbul Half Marathon.

The 22 year-old got this time when she smashed the race course record at the Antrim Coast Half Marathon in August. She dominated the race, beating the second-place finisher, Jane Nyaboke of Kenya, by six minutes. This race was her third attempt at the half marathon world record, and she will have a fourth this weekend at the Valencia Half Marathon.

She found out her record wasn’t ratified moments before today’s Valencia press conference. “I always focus on what I can influence and accept what comes my way,” said Yehualaw when asked about the World Athletics decision, according to NN Running Team.

Gidey and Dibaba set to attack the world half record in Valencia

Fresh from winning 10,000m bronze medallist at the Concluded Olympic Games in Tokyo, Japan, Letesenbet Gidey will be facing off with world 1500m record holder Genzebe Dibaba at the Valencia Half Marathon that will be held on October 24 in Valencia, Spain.

 It will be an all Ethiopian battle, who both enjoys good time on the course. The 5,000m record holder with 14:06.62, also holds the 10,000m record set in Hengelo in 29:01.03 as well as the 15km world record in 44:20.

Dibaba on the other hand, the former Olympic Games 1500m Rio silver medallist, won Valencia title last year 1:05.18 while Senbere Teferi took the honors in 2019 with a time of 1:05.32.

Teferi also holds the 5Km record for women with 14:29. Another Ethiopia Yalemzerf Yehualaw comes with a personal best of 1:04.40 that she got when she finished third in the last World Half Marathon in Gdynia, Poland. She took 19 seconds off the world half marathon record, running a remarkable 1:03.44 at the P&O Ferries Antrim Coast Half Marathon.

WHO IS Yalemzerf Yehualaw?

Yalemzerf Yehualaw may only have been running internationally for the past couple of years but her journey in the sport began when she was at school.

Growing up in West Gojjam, in a village in the Amhara region of Ethiopia north of Addis Ababa, she was the eldest of six siblings and showed her talent for athletics with wins on the track, road and cross country.

Winning 3000m and 5000m youth titles, the NN Running Team has explained, saw her talent recognised and she formed part of the Ethiopian Athletics Federation Academy system in Addis Ababa.

Then in 2017 she joined coach Tessema Abshero. “Many Ethiopian athletes have a natural gift,” Abshero told the NN Running Team, “but Yalemzerf had three very good qualities; speed, endurance and good core strength.”
Yehualaw worked towards her first overseas race, which was to be the 2019 Rabat Half Marathon. There she ran 1:09:13 to win by almost three minutes and then she returned to Ethiopia to compete over 10,000m on the track at the Ethiopian Championships, finishing fifth in 32:21.0 in a race won by Letesenbet Gidey, who would go on to break world records in the 5000m and 10,000m.

Later that year Yehualaw secured a place on the Ethiopian team for the African Games, which meant a return to Rabat and another win as, clocking 1:10:26, she broke the Games record. Her next race was the Delhi Half Marathon, where she improved her PB to 1:06:01 before a 10km win at the Great Ethiopian Run (31:55). She brought 2019 to a close with another win, clocking 1:07:34 at the Xiamen Half Marathon in China.

The year 2020 started with a sixth-place finish at the Ras Al Khaimah Half Marathon despite stomach problems and she continued her preparations for the World Athletics Half Marathon Championships in Gdynia, Poland. But the pandemic forced the global event’s postponement and Yehualaw went back to train in her home village. Groups gradually returned to training in Addis Ababa and Yehualaw’s focus remained on the World Half Marathon Championships, rescheduled for October.

Her coach believed she could win a medal there and he was right, as Yehualaw improved to a PB of 1:05:19 to get bronze, despite slipping in the closing stages, as race winner Peres Jepchirchir ran a women-only world record of 1:05.16.

Just six weeks later, Yehualaw was back in action at the Delhi Half Marathon and this time she claimed the win, again running a PB of 1:04.46 which at that time was the second-fastest ever women’s half marathon. She ended the year in style by winning the Nationale-Nederlanden San Silvestre Vallecana 10km in Madrid in 31:17.

Yehualaw picked up from where she left off in 2021, winning the 10,000m at the Olympic candidate trial competition before a return to the roads. In Istanbul in April she went quicker still in the half marathon, improving to 1:04:40 for a time which then placed her third on the world all-time list.
Her Olympic hopes were dashed when she placed fourth in the Ethiopian Trials 10,000m and did not make the team for the Games in Tokyo but she instead put her energy into her next road race – the Antrim Coast Half Marathon.
After a spell spent training in Seefeld in Austria, Yehualaw made the trip to Northern Ireland with her eye on Chepngetich’s world record mark. She remained on pace throughout the race and her dream was realized when she crossed the finish line with a time of 1:03.44 on the clock. No other woman has ever run under 64 minutes for the distance.

“I have tried twice before to break the world record but it didn’t happen,” she said on the live BBC stream. “I’m so happy it happened today in Larne.”


World half marathon record progression (mixed)

1:06:44 Elana Meyer (RSA) Tokyo 1999
1:06:25 Lornah Kiplagat (NED) Udine 2007
1:05:50 Mary Keitany (KEN) Ras Al Khaimah 2011
1:05:12 Florence Kiplagat (KEN) Barcelona 2014
1:05:09 Florence Kiplagat (KEN) Barcelona 2015
1:05:06 Peres Jepchirchir (KEN) Ras Al Khaimah 2017
1:04:52 Joyciline Jepkosgei (KEN) Prague 2017
1:04:51 Joyciline Jepkosgei (KEN) Valencia 2017
1:04:31 Ababel Yeshaneh (ETH) Ras Al Khaimah 2020
1:04:02 Ruth Chepngetich (KEN) Istanbul 2021**
1:03:44 Yalemzerf Yehualaw (ETH) Larne 2021**

World half marathon all-time list

1:03:44 Yalemzerf Yehualaw (ETH) Larne 2021
1:04:02 Ruth Chepngetich (KEN) Istanbul 2021
1:04:31 Ababel Yeshaneh (ETH) Ras Al Khaimah 2020
1:04:49 Brigid Kosgei (KEN) Ras Al Khaimah 2020
1:04:51 Joyciline Jepkosgei (KEN) Valencia 2017
1:04:51 Hellen Obiri (KEN) Istanbul 2021
1:04:52 Fancy Chemutai (KEN) Ras Al Khaimah 2018
1:04:55 Mary Keitany (KEN) Ras Al Khaimah 2018
1:05:04 Joan Melly (KEN) Prague 2018
1:05:06 Peres Jepchirchir (KEN) Ras Al Khaimah 2017

Yalemzerf Yehualaw’s progression

(half marathon)
2019: 1:06:01
2020: 1:04:46
2021: 1:03:44

Source: keirradnedge.com/

Jemal Yimer wins Antrim Coast Half Marathon

Ethiopia’s Jemal Yimer is the new winner of the Antrim Coast Half Marathon that was held on Sunday (29) in Antrim, Northern Ireland.

The 2018 African 10000 Athletics Champion won the race 60:29 as he edged out Tesfahun Akalnew also from Ethiopia who crossed the line in second place a second later.

Kenya’s Shadrack Kimining closed the first podium three finishes in 60:31.

Marck Scott from Northern Ireland and Nigel Martin from England took the fourth and fifth place in 1:00.34 and 1:03.21 respectively

The race course record of 60:21 that was set by Mo Farah remained intact.


Yalemzerf Yehualaw smashes women world half marathon record

Ethiopian Yalemzerf Yehualaw smashed the women’s half marathon world record at the Antrim Coast Half Marathon that was held on Sunday (29) in Antrim, Northern Ireland.

The Ethiopian made her international debut in 2019 to now being the only woman to have ever run under 64 minutes for the half marathon, it has been quite a journey for Yehualaw.
The NN Running team member was paced by Roy Hoornweg and Mohamed Ali and the record looked on from the start. They reached 5km in 15:05 and 10km in 30:22 before 15km was passed in 45:24, with Yehualaw still looking comfortable.
Her intent was obvious and she continued to push the pace, with the world record in her sights.

“I was frustrated after not getting it (the world record) in Istanbul,” Yehualaw added, “but I am extremely happy now!”

The 22 year-old took off 19 seconds from the previous record that had been set by Kenyan Ruth Chepngetich earlier this year to set a new women half marathon record of 60:03.43.

Ethiopian Yalemzerf Yehualaw poses with the race ambassador Mo Farah after breaking the Women Half Marathon Record at Antrim Coast Half Marathon. PHOTO: KEITH McCLURE

Kenyan Vane Nyamboke came home second in 1:09.44 and was followed by England’s Rose Harvey who closed the podium finishes in 1:10.28

Yehualaw cut 57 second off her personal best set in Istanbul earlier this year when Chepngetich set the then world record.

Yalemzerf Yehualaw’s progression

(Half Marathon)
2019: 1:06.01
2020: 1:04.46
2021: 1:03.44

Jemal Yimer to headline the Antrim Coast Half Marathon

The 2018 African 10000 Athletics Champion, Jemal Yimer will be the star to watch at the Antrim Coast Half Marathon that will be held on Sunday (29) in Antrim, Northern Ireland.

The 24 year-old, won his last half marathon outing at the Houston half marathon in 2020 and has also achieved the fastest ever debut half marathon in 59:00 that he got in 2019 at Ras al Khaimah half marathon in United Arab Emirates

Yimer will be joined by his fellow country-mate Tesfahun Akalnew, who carries on his shoulders a personal best of 59:22 that he got at the 2020 New Delhi Half Marathon.

The UK and Ireland will be led by Tokyo Olympians Marc Scott, Stephen Scullion and Paul Pollock. Scott is the two times European record holder and second fastest all-time Briton behind Sir Mo Farah over 10,000m and is looking to go one better this year, and become only the second Briton to break the 60 -minute barrier.

Stephen finished fourth in last year’s race and went on to break the Northern Ireland record.

Paul, fresh from his second Olympics will make his debut on the fast scenic course and will also threaten the top positions. Barcelona Olympian and multiple world record holder Tommy Hughes will be also sure to have huge crowd support again this year as he once again makes his latest bid on the vet’s +60 world record, which he smashed at last year’s race.

The defending champion, Farah is unable to race this year due to injury but has pledged his support for the event by being the race ambassador.