Ruth Chepngetich smashed her own course record at the Vodafone Instanbul Half Marathon on Sunday.
Racing with compatriot Dorcas Jepchirchir through the opening five kilometres in 15:11, Chepngetich broke away soon thereafter, scorching through the 10km checkpoint in 30:33, 17 seconds clear of 21-year-old Jepchirchir to cut the tape in 1:05:30
Chepngetich slowed over the next five kilometres, reaching 15 kilometres in 46:15, but still padded her lead to 23 seconds.
The 24-year-old set the course record of 1:06:19 in April 2017, then returned seven months later to clinch the Istanbul Marathon, winning in 2:22:36 in her debut over the distance.
She returned a year later to make a massive marathon breakthrough, clocking 2:18:35.
In January she ran faster still, winning in Dubai in 2:17:08, the 2019’s fastest time. Her performance over the weekend elevates her to 11th on the all-time half marathon list, and second on the 2019 list.
Helen Tola, the runner-up at last month’s Tokyo Marathon in a solid 2:21:01, clocked 1:06:45 to knock 62 seconds from her previous lifetime best.
In the men’s race, 22-year-old Benard Ngeno fought back Ethiopian Abayneh Degu’s late challenge to secure his second half marathon victory of the year, clocking 59:56. Ngeno was aggressive from the gun, running at the front of the leading packs that consisted of 14 runners at five kilometres (14:19) and ten at ten kilometres (28:17) before jumping to a nine-second lead after 15 kilometres (42:29).
Amedework Walelegn, who broke the course record last year with a 59:50 run, dropped off the pace after 10 kilometres and eventually finished 11th in 1:01:56.