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Mwangangi, Masai win 30th Dam tot Damloop

John Mwangangi - Dam tot Dam

Today, during a thrilling final, John Mwangangi won the Dam tot Damloop for the second time. In an epic duel, the 23-year old Kenyan knocked out his rival Nguse Amlosom, who won the event last year. At the finish on the Peperstraat people were showered with confetti after 45.45 minutes.

Kenyan Domination at Dam tot Dam

Times for the 10 mile race were not the best due to the strong winds. Linet Masai broke away and strode to the finish with a winning time of 53.09 minutes. On her own, the athlete from Kenya was no match for the men in the male-female competition, however.

Mwangangi was overjoyed with his victory, saying it took him by surprise. “I did not expect to be this fast because I am currently in full training for the TCS Amsterdam Marathon.” The Kenyan also won the IAAF Silver Label race in 2010, and last year he finished second. This year, the roles were reversed and a disillusioned Amlosom had to settle for second place. The 27-year old former winner from Eritrea appeared at the start with great expectations.

After 35 minutes, the duo broke away from the group along with Kinde Atelaw from Ethiopia and it looked like Amlosom was going to live up to his role as favourite. By then, the time of around 44 minutes that Amlosom had in mind was no longer achievable due to the strong head winds, especially between the 10 and 13 kilometre marks. After this section, the fastest men passed the fastest woman, Linet Masai, who had started 6.04 minutes earlier with the hope of staying ahead of the men. Along the Zuiddijk, which was beautifully decorated as always, the trio gained even more and when they arrived in the Peperstraat little Mwangangi accelerated. 45.45 minutes was slightly slower than last year, but it is still the third fastest time to be run at the 16.1 km race this year. Mwangangi was two seconds faster than Amlosom. Kinde Atelaw was seven seconds slower than the winner and completed the podium. Khalid Choukoud finished twelfth overall with 47.59 and was best the Dutch participant.

After the finish, Linet Masai admitted that she was having a hard time. The 24-year-old Kenyan broke away from Olympic marathon champion Tiki Gelana with long, powerful strides after about eight kilometres. Hilda Kibet had already given up a kilometre before this. Masai was able to defy the strong winds on her own, which showed in her time of 53.09. Her time when she won in 2009 was 50.39 (which is still the world record). Tiki Gelana finished second today with 53.59 minutes. Kibet was happy to achieve third place (54.25), which made her the best female Dutch participant: “It was fine for today. I’m not quite back on form, but I’m getting back on the right track.”

A total of 45,000 participants will appear at the start of the 10 mile race from Amsterdam to Zaandam today. This makes the Dam tot Damloop the biggest 10 mile race in the world. The last runners will cross the finish line at 5 PM. Earlier this morning, more than 5,000 children participated in the Mini Dam tot Damlopen in Zaandam and Amsterdam-Noord. The special anniversary edition was celebrated last night with the new Damloop by night, a 4 mile race with 10,000 runners that was spectacularly illuminated by thousands of lights. Next year the Dam tot Dam events will take place on 19th and 20th September 2015.

Top 5 men

1. John Mwangangi, 45.45 minutes (KEN)
2. Nguse Amlosom, 45.27 minutes (ERI)
3. Kinde Atelaw, 45.52 minutes (ETH)
4. Josphat Bett, 46.22 minutes (KEN)
5. Peter Kirui, 46.33 minutes (KEN)

Top 5 women

1. Linet Masai, 53.09 minutes (KEN)
2. Tiki Gelana, 53.57 minutes (ETH)
3. Hilda Kibet, 54.25 minutes (NED)
4. Almensch Belete, 56.14 minutes (BEL)
5. Adero Nyakisi, 56.32 minutes (UGA)

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