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Thursday 29 September 2016

Kenyan Kipsang goes for hat-trick in Belfast

Thomas Fitzpatrick (SPORTSFILE)
Thomas Fitzpatrick (SPORTSFILE)

Double Belfast Marathon winner Joel Kipsang of Kenya goes for a hat-trick of victories in Monday's 35th Deep RiverRock Belfast City Marathon.

Some 2,700 are running in the 26.2 mile event along with a massive 1,800 five-person relay teams - that's over 6,000 runners, making the race the largest on this island over the May Bank Holiday weekend. Kipsang's biggest rival is likely to be the 19-year-old Ethiopian Zeleke Bekele, who already has a marathon time of 2:15:23. to his credit.

Leading the women's entry are Hungarian athletes Katalin Garami and Helen Csonge. Garami was third last year.

A day earlier, the Barrington's Hospital Great Limerick Run, with a marathon, half marathon, relay, and six-mile run on offer. is expected to attract close to 6,000 runners.

Last year, the veteran Kenyans Lezan Kimutai won the marathon in 2 hours 25 minutes 5 seconds, with Clonliffe's Gary O'Hanlon just 10 seconds behind for second and Tullamore's Pauline Curley first woman.

Peter Brandon of Kenya and Clonliffe's Barbara Sanchez were the half marathon winners.

Entry is still open for Sunday's Tallaght 5k which incorporates the Dublin Novice Road Championships. Last year's winner was Thomas Fitzpatrick of the host club, with Rathfarnham WSAF and Sportsworld taking the men and women's team prizes respectively.

In Drogheda, the Coca Cola Boyne 10k has cash prizes for the first three men and women plus a €100 course record bonus.

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