Yehualaw recovers from fall to win London Marathon women’s race

Yalemzerf Yehualaw

The 23-year-old Yehualaw recorded the third fastest women’s time at the event.

Ethiopia’s Yalemzerf Yehualaw recovered from a fall to win the women’s race at the London Marathon.

Yehualaw tripped and fell over a speed bump around the 20-mile mark. She quickly rejoined the lead pack, then pulled away from Jepkosgei by running the 24th mile in a reported 4:43, a 2:03:30 marathon pace. Yehualaw was aiming to break the women’s world record is 2:14:04.

Yalemzerf made her winning break just inside the final 5km. She produced a relentless burst of acceleration to kick clear of Joyciline Jepkosgei. To round out a magnificent win, she just three seconds shy of her PB.

An ecstatic Yehualaw said: “I am so happy to win here in London. I have worked very hard to prepare for this race and to take the victory is amazing.”

Yehualaw and Jepkosgei were pre-race favorites after world record holder Brigid Kosgei of Kenya withdrew Monday with a right hamstring injury.

On April 24, she ran the fastest women’s debut marathon in history, a 2:17:23 to win in Hamburg, Germany.

She has joined the elite tier of female marathoners, a group led by Kenyan Peres Jepchirchir, the reigning Olympic, New York City and Boston champion. Another Ethiopian staked a claim last week when Tigist Assefa won Berlin in 2:15:37, shattering Yehualaw’s national record.

The 23-year-old came home in 2 hours 17 minutes and 25 seconds – the third fastest time at the event – as defending champion Joyciline Jepkosgei, of Kenya, had to settle for second.

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