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Posted On: 8/18/2016

Look Back at US Women's Marathon Team
 

Women's Olympic Games Marathon (9th)
(Abbott World Marathon Majors Event)
Rio de Janeiro, BRA; Sunday, August 14, 09h30 start

Distance: 42.195 km; certified out-and-back course (5 km opening segment, 3 x 10 km, 7.195 km closing segment)
Starters: 156 (up from 118 in 2012)
Finishers: 133 (up from 107 in 2012)

Olympic Games Record: 2:23:07, Tiki Gelana, ETH
Weather: Sun, hot temperatures
Prize Money: None
  NOTE: Story by Assistant Editor CHRIS LOTSBOM -- Asst. Ed.


In the war of attrition that is the marathon, Kenyan Jemima Sumgong prevailed when it mattered most -- at the finish in the Sambódromo. Sumgong seized the moment after a blistering 5-K split of 16:30 between 35- and 40-K, going on to make history and become Kenya's first women's Olympic Marathon champion. Her winning time was 2:24:04.

"I'm very grateful to win Kenya's first gold medal in Rio," said Sumgong. "It was very hot but everybody had to get through the heat. I had to control my body and listen to my body very carefully."

A large group of 12 passed halfway in 1:12:56, led by the surprising Volha Mazuronak of Belarus, a former race walker. Tucked in behind Mazuronak where two athletes apiece from Bahrain and Ethiopia, as well as three athletes from both Kenya and America. The one major casualty prior to midway was Tigist Tufa, victim to a visible calf injury that did not look pleasant on the television broadcast.

Each mile passed without much change, save for the shuffling of positions at each water and elite fluid station. Because conditions were so hot, athletes frequently grabbed full bottles of water and soaked sponges to keep their core temperatures down. Running her own tempo, American Desiree Linden would take the lead, then fall back, re-take the lead, then fall back; a metronome, her pace was not going to be dictated by those around her (in the end she'd run half-marathon splits of 1:13:02 and 1:13:06).

The pack was trimmed to seven by 30-K: Ethiopia's Tirfi Tsegaye and Mare Dibaba; Bahrain's Rose Chelimo and Eunice Jepkirui Kirwa; Kenya's Sumgong; Belarussian Mazuronak, and American Shalane Flanagan. Linden was 12 seconds behind in eighth, followed by USA teammate Amy Cragg an additional 12 seconds back. By this point, Kenyans Helah Kiprop and Visiline Jepkesho had been deemed non-factors (they'd go on to DNF and finish 86th).

The top seven hadn't changed at 35-K (reached in 2:00:31), though that wouldn't last for long. It was Dibaba who injected the first bold move of the race, taking Sumgong and Kirwa with her. The increase in pace could be shown by the sizzling split leading to 40-K: 16:30, the fastest 5-K of the entire race.


Looking strongest of the trio, Sumgong survived the surge then threw in a burst of her own roughly a mile from the finish line. The move wound up deciding the medal positions, and Sumgong ran away with the gold in 2:24:04. Kirwa took silver (2:24:13), and Dibaba bronze (2:24:30). The win gave Kenya their first gold medal of the Olympiad, and their first women's marathon gold in history.

"I'm so happy, I feel extremely proud. I can't even explain what I'm feeling," Sumgong said.

Behind the medalists, Tsegaye wound up fourth in 2:24:47; Mazuronak fifth in 2:24:48; then the dynamic American duo of Flanagan and Linden, 2:25:26 and 2:26:08. Rounding out the American contingent was Amy Cragg in 2:28:25; it was the first time three Americans finished in the top ten in women's Olympic marathon history.

"I tried to just hang as tight as I could but I also tried to play it smart knowing they may blow each other up and I may be able to pick off some of the carnage... I just tried to keep my head up and stay positive the entire time," Flanagan told Letsrun.com. "I'm happy I hung in as long as I could, but unfortunately it just wasn't enough. Had I been able to just push a little bit sooner maybe I could have been part of the carnage but closer, maybe I gave up too much ground, but that's all I had, that's what I am."


"The women we were competing against, they're just amazing," Cragg said. "They're so, so good. So we knew we had to train to be up there, we had to race the perfect race, we had to conserve energy early and then be ready to race at the end. And I feel like we did everything. I feel like we were the most prepared people out there. It just didn't work out today."

The Olympic Marathon was a good race for siblings: Korea's Hye-Song Kim and Hye-Gyong Kim ran the entire race side-by-side, finishing together in tenth and eleventh in 2:28:36. German twins Anna and Lisa Hahner were 81st and 82nd, timing 2:45:32 and 2:45:33, respectively. The Luik triplets of Estonian were 97th (Lily Luik, 2:48:29) and 114th (Leila Luik, 2:54:38), while Liina Luik did not finish.

With her win, Jemima Jelagat Sumgong now holds a firm grasp on the Abbott World Marathon Majors standings lead, having won two races in Series X. She won the Virgin Money London Marathon in April in 2:22:58.-- Asst. Ed.


 1. Jemima Jelagat SUMGONG, KEN      2:24:04  GOLD
   [1:12:57 / 1:11:07]
 2. Eunice Jepkirui KIRWA, BRN       2:24:13  SILVER
   [1:12:57 / 1:11:16]
 3. Mare DIBABA, ETH                 2:24:30  BRONZE
   [1:12:57 / 1:11:33]
 4. Tirfi TSEGAYE, ETH               2:24:47
   [1:12:57 / 1:11:50]
 5. Volha MAZURONAK, BLR             2:24:48 
   [1:12:56 / 1:11:52]
 6. Shalane FLANAGAN, USA            2:25:26 SB
   [1:12:57 / 1:12:29]
 7. Desiree LINDEN, USA              2:26:08 SB
   [1:13:02 / 1:13:06]
 8. Rose CHELIMO, BRN                2:27:36
   [1:12:57 / 1:14:39]
 9. Amy CRAGG, USA                   2:28:25
   [1:12:58 / 1:15:27]
10. Hye-Song KIM, PRK                2:28:36 SB
   [1:13:14 / 1:15:22]
11. Hye-Gyong KIM, PRK               2:28:36
   [1:13:14 / 1:15:22]
12. Jelena PROKOPCUKA, LAT           2:29:32
   [1:15:58 / 1:13:34]
13. Valeria STRANEO, ITA             2:29:44 SB
   [1:13:39 / 1:16:05]
14. Kayoko FUKUSHI, JPN              2:29:53
   [1:13:03 / 1:16:50]
15. Gladys TEJEDA, PER               2:29:55 SB
   [1:13:05 / 1:16:50]
16. Ana Dulce FÉLIX, POR             2:30:39
   [1:13:42 / 1:16:57]
17. Diana LOBACEVSKE, LTU            2:30:48
   [1:15:16 / 1:15:32]
18. Milly CLARK, AUS                 2:30:53
   [1:15:21 / 1:15:32]
19. Tomomi TANAKA, JPN               2:31:12
   [1:13:14 / 1:17:58]
20. Fionnuala MCCORMACK, IRL         2:31:22 PB
   [1:15:23 / 1:15:59]
21. Iwona LEWANDOWSKA, POL           2:31:41
22. Jessica TRENGOVE, AUS            2:31:44
23. Monika STEFANOWICZ, POL          2:32:49
24. Lanni MARCHANT, CAN              2:33:08
   [1:15:16 / 1:17:52]
25. Catherine BERTONE, ITA           2:33:29
26. Eva VRABCOVÁ-NÝVLTOVÁ, CZE       2:33:51
27. Lilia FISIKOWICI, MDA            2:34:05 PB
28. Alyson DIXON, GBR                2:34:11
   [1:16:23 / 1:17:48]
29. Maja NEUENSCHWANDER, SUI         2:34:27
30. Sonia SAMUELS, GBR               2:34:36
   [1:16:23 / 1:18:13]
31. Lisa WEIGHTMAN, AUS              2:34:41
32. Madaí PÉREZ, MEX                 2:34:42
   [1:15:23 / 1:19:19]
33. Olha KOTOVSKA, UKR               2:34:57 SB
34. Azucena DÍAZ, ESP                2:35:02
35. Krista DUCHENE, CAN              2:35:29
36. Jovana DE LA CRUZ, PER           2:35:49
37. Rasa DRAZDAUSKAITÉ, LTU          2:35:50
38. Vaida �ŽUSINAITE, LTU             2:35:53
39. Kit-Ching YIU, HKG               2:36:11 NR/PB
40. Jessica DRASKAU-PETERSSON, DEN   2:36:14
41. Beata NAIGAMBO, NAM              2:36:32
42. Seul-ki AHN, KOR                 2:36:50
43. Angie ORJUELA, COL               2:37:05
44. Anja SCHERL, GER                 2:37:23
45. Maryna DAMANTSEVICH, BLR         2:37:34
46. Mai ITO, JPN                     2:37:37
   [1:14:42 / 1:22:55]
47. Veerle DEJAEGHERE, BEL           2:37:39
48. Margarita HERNÁNDEZ, MEX         2:38:15
49. Kum-Ok KIM, PRK                  2:38:24
50. Kenza DAHMANI TIFAHI, ALG        2:38:37
51. Anne-Mari HYRYLÄINEN, FIN        2:39:02
52. Zsófia ERDÉLYI, HUN              2:39:04
53. Chao YUE, CHN                    2:39:09
54. Sitora HAMIDOVA, UZB             2:39:45 PB
55. Anne Holm BAUMEISTER, DEN        2:39:49
56. Helalia JOHANNES, NAM            2:39:55
57. Lizzie LEE, IRL                  2:39:57
58. Esma AYDEMIR, TUR                2:39:59
59. Iuliia ANDREEVA, KGZ             2:40:34
60. Andrea DEELSTRA, NED             2:40:49
61. Ilona MARHELE, LAT               2:41:02
62. Viktoriia POLIUDINA, KGZ         2:41:37
63. Dina Lebo PHALULA, RSA           2:41:46
64. Andrea MAYR, AUT                 2:41:52
65. Krisztina PAPP, HUN              2:42:03
66. Svitlana STANKO-KLYMENKO, UKR    2:42:26
67. Mayada SAYYAD, PLE               2:42:28
68. Nyakisi ADERO, UGA               2:42:39 SB
69. Adriana Aparecida DA SILVA, BRA  2:43:22
70. Kyunghee LIM, KOR                2:43:31
71. Beverly RAMOS, PUR               2:43:52
72. Munkhzaya BAYARTSOGT, MGL        2:43:55
73. Erika ABRIL, COL                 2:44:05
74. Manuela SOCCOL, BEL              2:44:18
75. Alina ARMAS, NAM                 2:44:20
76. Breege CONNOLLY, IRL             2:44:41
77. Marina HMELEVSKAYA, UZB          2:45:06
78. Marily DOS SANTOS, BRA           2:45:08
79. Shaoqing HUA, CHN                2:45:09
80. Nebiat HABTEMARIAM, ERI          2:45:21
81. Anna HAHNER, GER                 2:45:32
82. Lisa HAHNER, GER                 2:45:33
83. Tünde SZABÓ, HUN                 2:45:37
84. Els RENS, BEL                    2:45:52
85. Otgonbayar LUVSANLUNDEG, MGL     2:45:55
86. Visiline JEPKESHO, KEN           2:46:05
   [1:12:57 / 1:33:08 (NOTE: Was in second at half-way!)]
87. Nataliya LEHONKOVA, UKR          2:46:08
88. Ouranía REBOÚLI, GRE             2:46:32
89. Jaisha ORCHATTERI, IND           2:47:19
90. Maor TIYOURI, ISR                2:47:27
91. Jane VONGVORACHOTI, THA          2:47:27
92. Rutendo NYAHORA, ZIM             2:47:32
93. Yolymar PINEDA, VEN              2:47:34
94. Mariya KOROBITSKAYA, KGZ         2:47:53
95. Silvia PAREDES, ECU              2:48:01
96. Christine KALMER, RSA            2:48:24
97. Lily LUIK, EST                   2:48:29
98. Tereza MASTER, MAW               2:48:34 NR/PB
99. María Elena CALLE, ECU           2:48:39
100. Rosa CHACHA, ECU                2:48:52
101. Paula-Claudia TODORAN, ROU      2:48:54
102. Dailín BELMONTE, CUB            2:48:58
103. Sofía RÍGA, GRE                 2:49:07
104. Matea MATOSEVIC, CRO            2:50:00
105. Erika OLIVERA, CHI              2:50:29 (5th Olympic Marathon finish)
106. Ariana HILBORN, LAT             2:50:51
107. Katarina BÉREÅ OVÁ, SVK          2:50:54
108. Militsa MIRCHEVA, BUL           2:51:06
109. Chirine NJEIM, LIB              2:51:08
110. Rosa GODOY, ARG                 2:52:31
111. Sultan HAYDAR, TUR              2:53:57
112. Meryem ERDOGAN, TUR             2:54:04
113. Chien-Ho HSIEH, TPE             2:54:18
114. Leila LUIK, EST                 2:54:38
115. Carmen Patricia MARTÍNEZ, PAR   2:56:43
116. Lucia KIMANI, BIH               2:58:22
117. Rosemary QUISPE, BOL            2:58:32
118. Panayióta VLAHÁKI, GRE          2:59:12
119. Marija VRAJIC, CRO              2:59:24
120. Kavita TUNGAR, IND              2:59:29
121. Sara RAMADHANI, TAN             3:00:03
122. Irina SMOLNIKOVA, KAZ           3:00:31
123. Natalia ROMERO, CHI             3:01:29
124. Mary Joy TABAL, PHI             3:02:27
125. Viviana CHÁVEZ, ARG             3:03:23
126. Claudette MUKASAKINDI, RWA      3:05:57
127. Yu-Hsuan CHEN, TPE              3:09:13
128. Graciete SANTANA, BRA           3:09:15
129. Niluka RAJASEKARA, SRI          3:11:05
130. Natthaya THANARONNAWAT, THA     3:11:31
131. Jie Shi NEO, SIN                3:15:18 PB
132. Sarah ATTAR, KSA                3:16:11
133. Nary LY, CAM                    3:20:20
DNF-- Katarzyna KOWALSKA, POL        [1:15:16 at half / 2:42:10 at 40-K]
DNF-- Helah KIPROP, KEN              [1:12:57 at half / 2:05:35 at 35-K]
DNF-- Lornah Chemtai KORLIMA, ISR    [1:21:05 at half / 2:22:39 at 35-K]
DNF-- Anna INCERTI, ITA              [1:15:15 at half / 1:47:30 at 30-K]
DNF-- Christelle DAUNAY, FRA         [1:13:43 at half / 1:27:46 at 25-K]
DNF-- Alessandra AGUILAR, ESP        [1:15:16 at half / 1:29:38 at 25-K]
DNF-- Souad AÏT SALEM, ALG           [1:15:21 at half / 1:30:41 at 25-K]
DNF-- Inés MELCHOR, PER              [1:15:57 at half / 1:31:08 at 25-K]
DNF-- Kellys ARIAS, COL              [1:18:18 at half]
DNF-- Olivera JEVTIC, SRB            [1:18:42 at half]
DNF-- Estela NAVASCUÉS, ESP          [1:19:09 at half]
DNF-- Liina LUIK, EST                [1:22:31 at 20-K; Only one of Luik triplets not to finish]
DNF-- María PERALTA, ARG             [1:35:06 at 20-K]
DNF-- Tigist TUFA, ETH               [51:44 at 15-K, with leaders. Appeared to be a visably injured calf muscle]
DNF-- Jessica AUGUSTO, POR           [52:18 at 15-K]
DNF-- Nastassia IVANOVA, BLR         [52:27 at 15-K]
DNF-- Shitaye ESHETE, BRN            [52:35 at 15-K]
DNF-- Gulzhanat ZHANATBEK, KAZ       [58:54 at 15-K]
DNF-- Daniela CÂRLAN, ROU            [39:15 at 10-K]
DNF-- Sladana PERUNOVIC, MNE         [39:29 at 10-K]
DNF-- Sara MOREIRA, POR              [17:27 at 5-K]
DNF-- Koutar BOULAID, MAR            [17:50 at 5-K]
DNF-- Daneja GRANDOVEC, SLO          [Did not reach 5-K, No Splits Recorded]
DNS-- Irvette VAN ZYL, RSA

5-K Splits for Medalists:
         Sumgong (KEN)        KIRWA (BRN)        Dibaba (ETH)
 5-K       17:24                17:24              17:23
10-K       34:23 (16:59)        34:23 (16:59)      34:22 (16:59)
15-K       51:44 (17:21)        51:44 (17:21)      51:43 (17:21)
20-K     1:09:07 (17:23)      1:09:07 (17:23)    1:09:07 (17:24)
Half     1:12:57              1:12:57            1:12:57
25-K     1:26:07 (17:00)      1:26:07 (17:00)    1:26:07 (17:00)
30-K     1:43:21 (17:14)      1:43:21 (17:14)    1:43:21 (17:14)
35-K     2:00:32 (17:11)      2:00:32 (17:11)    2:00:31 (17:10)
40-K     2:17:02 (16:30)      2:17:02 (16:30)    2:17:05 (16:34)
42.195-K 2:24:04 (07:02)      2:24:13 (07:11)    2:24:30 (07:25)

 Intermediate Times for Leaders:
   5-K:   17:23, Mare DIBABA, ETH            [pack of 32]
  10-K:   34:22, Visiline JEPKESHO, KEN      [pack of 18]
  15-K:   51:43, Rose CHELIMO, BAH           [pack of 16]
  20-K: 1:09:07, Visiline JEPKESHO, KEN      [pack of 13]
  Half: 1:12:56, Volha MAZURONAK, BEL        [pack of 10]
  25-K: 1:26:07, Rose CHELIMO, BAH           [pack of 9]
  30-K: 1:43:21, Tirfi TSEGAYE, ETH          [pack of 7]
  35-K: 2:00:31, Mare DIBABA, ETH            [pack of 7]
  40-K: 2:17:02, Jemima Jelagat SUMGONG, KEN [pack of 3]

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