Asefa Bekele wins Dublin Marathon, while Cork's Lizzie Lee finishes third in women's race

Asefa Bekele wins Dublin Marathon, while Cork's Lizzie Lee finishes third in women's race
Winner of the women’s Irish National Marathon title Lizzie Lee during the SSE Airtricity Dublin Marathon in Dublin's City Centre. Photo: Gareth Chaney Collins

Ethiopia's Asefa Bekele has claimed victory in the 2018 Dublin Marathon, winning the men's race in a time of 2 hours 13 minutes and 23 seconds.

David Manja from South Africa came second in a time of 2 hours 13 minutes and 33 seconds, while Joel Kiptoo from Kenya was third in 2 hours 13 minutes and 42 seconds.

Bekele's compatriot Mesera Dubiso is celebrating victory in the women's race after coming home first in a time of 2 hours 33 minutes and 48 seconds.

Her teammate Motu Gedefa followed in 2 hours 34 minutes and 22 seconds, with Cork's Lizzie Lee from Leevale AC coming third in 2 hours 35 minutes and 5 seconds.

Lee claimed the National title with her podium finish, while Raheny Shamrock AC’s Mick Clohisey claimed the men’s National title in 2 hours 15 minutes and 58 seconds, the fastest time to win the National title since 1991. The Dublin man placed sixth overall.

Overjoyed with the National win, Lizzie Lee said: “An Irish woman on the overall podium, I am thrilled with that!

"I am thrilled with the time, I am thrilled with the place and I know my little girl is out there somewhere I can’t wait to give her a hug. I needed redemption after Berlin. I felt like the last few miles got away from me.

"I am absolutely over the moon. I am a Mum of two small girls and I work full time.

Running is my hobby and I am on a podium with two Ethiopian girls. Every second step I was getting a shout of ‘Lizzie’ or ‘Leevale’. From the RDS on I felt like everyone else was doing the running for me.

Mick Clohisey commented following his win of the National title: “First time to run Dublin, the hometown, so I was really looking forward to this Marathon.

"I got stuck in early on, it was quite a slow start but then eventually the lads started to pick it up after we left the park. I managed to reel off about six or seven lads from about 18 miles on, so I just kept focusing ahead.

"I felt strong, one or two tough patches as always but I enjoyed the atmosphere along the course, some of the areas and crowds are just brilliant and you have in your head that it’s a nice finish so it gives you confidence. Really enjoyed it and happy to get the National title as well.”

Last year’s National champion, Gary O’Hanlon (Clonliffe Harriers AC) placed second in a personal best time of 2 hours 17 minutes and 11 seconds, with Sergiu Ciobanu (Clonliffe Harriers AC) placing third in 2 hours 17 minutes and 28 seconds.

In the women’s National field, Caitriona Jennings (Letterkenny AC) placed second in 2 hours 41 minutes and 17 seconds, with Jill Hodgins (Leevale AC) placing third in 2 hours 47 minutes and 53 seconds.

In the Wheelchair Race, four-time champion Patrick Monahan had a strong international field to contend with finishing second in 1 hour 38 minutes and 29 seconds. England’s Commonwealth Medallist, Johnboy Smith was the winner with a time of 1 hour 36 minutes and 12 seconds with Ebbe Blichfeldt of Denmark claiming third place in 1 hour 50 minutes and 58 seconds.

Digital Desk

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