Kenyan-Ethiopian finishes Bloomsday in record time - SWX Right Now-Sports for Spokane, CdA, Tri-Cities, WA

Bloomsday 2009

Kenyan-Ethiopian finishes Bloomsday in record time

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SPOKANE,Wash. - It wasn't Lineth Chepkuri's first win at Bloomsday, but it was her most spectacular.  The Kenyan-Ethiopian broke away from the pack, finishing the race in 38:37, the fasted women's time ever at Bloomsday.

With temperatures hovering around 45 degrees, it didn't take long for Chepkurui to heat things up. A pack of nearly 20 stayed with her through the first mile-and-a-half, but then the pack began to thin as the runners headed up the first hill. By the third mile Chepkurui had begun to gap most of the talented pack except for Ethiopian Teyba Erkesso, who hung on gamely to the bottom of Doomsday Hill, the final ascent on the course.

Going up the hill to the five-mile mark, the Kenyan-Ethiopian matchup began to unravel, as Chepkurui poured it on. Chepkurui crested the hill in the lead, and from there to the finish she continued to build on her margin, finishing in 38:37. It was the fastest women's time ever recorded at Bloomsday except for Delillah Asiago's 1995 time of 38:31, a time adjusted to reflect what proved to be a short course.

Erkesso finished 40 seconds behind in 39:17, and the next four women all broke 40 minutes. It was the first time in Bloomsday history that six women finished under the 40-minute mark. Sally Meyerhoff of Temp, AZ, was the first American with a tenth place finish.

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