Posted by: Joe English | March 16, 2008

Races: Sammy Korir wins Seoul Marathon; back in top form

SEOUL, SOUTH KOREA — Kenyans dominated this year’s Seoul International Marathon by sweeping the top three men’s places, with Sammy Korir finishing first with a time of 2:07:32. In taking top honors and winning the $80,000first prize, he was still shy of his previous personal best of 2:04:56 set in Berlin five years ago.

Sammy Korir
Korir wins the 2008 Seoul Marathon

Korir, who finished third in the Dubai Marathon two months ago, is third fastest all-time in the marathon, behind only Paul Tergat and Haile Gebrselassie. He finished second place in the Berlin Marathon five years ago just one second behind Paul Tergat as he set a new world mark.

After Korir were Jason Mbote in 2:07:37 and Edwin Komen in 2:07:45. Both are fellow Kenyans. The fourth and fifth spots also went to Kenyan athletes.

“I’m so happy,” said Korir after the race, “I am seeing I am back now.”

Zhang Shujing of China won the women’s race in 2:26:11. Her compatriot Wang Xueqin came second in 2:28:39, followed by Hellen Jemaiyo Kimutai of Kenya third in 2:29:11.

Lee Bong-Ju, a top South Korean runner and silver medalist in the 1996 Atlanta Olympics, finished eighth.

The IAAF has a more in-depth report from the race, which you can access by clicking here.

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