Women marathon results
1. G.Tiki (Eth) 2:23:07 OR
2. J. Priscah (Ken) 2:23:12
3. P. Tatyana (Rus) 2:23:29
101. C. Mukasakindi (Rwa) 2:51:07
After running his career’s personal best at the London Olympics Games, national long distance ace Robert Kajuga has called for early preparations ahead of the 31st Olympiad which will be hosted by Rio de Janeiro in 2016.
On his Olympics debut, the 27-year old set a personal best time of 27:56.67 to finish 14th in the 10,000m men’s final at the Olympic Stadium on Saturday night.
The 10,000m national champion went into the competition with a personal best time of 28:03:24, but made the most drastic improvement of his career, setting an impressive time in one of the most closely contested race ever.
His time was 35 seconds shy of the national record of 27:22:28 which was set by Dieudonne Disi on September 14, 2007 in the Memorial Van Damme race in Belgium.
“I am really happy with my performances. I thought I could not finish among the top 15 considering the quality of athletes who lined up for the final,” a delighted Kajuga yesterday told Times Sport by phone from London.
He noted, “When I saw the two Bekele brothers, the Kenyans and Mo Farah (the eventual winner), I thought I would come last, but I was determined to give all my best, and it worked out well for me”.
“This is my first time to compete in the Olympic Games; it was a real good experience. But now I must go back home and work harder for the next Olympics in Brazil.
“What I have noticed, when you prepare early, you can win an Olympic medal. I will go back and work twice as hard and I hope I can post better times in Rio de Janiero.”
“I ran my best time here, in London and if we can have early preparations, compete in different international competitions, and get the needed support, I can also be an Olympic champion.
“I can guarantee that if all the (above) factors are met, nothing can stop me from claiming a podium finish in 2016,” added Kajuga, who slashed one minute, 53 seconds and 43 micro seconds off his previous best time.
In a related development, Claude Mukasakindi fell short of her target as she clocked 2:51:07 to finish 101th in the 42km women full marathon in London on Sunday.
Ethiopia’s Tiki Gelana took gold to claim a surprise victory. The 24-year-old, in her first major championship, crossed the finish line in an Olympic record of two hours 2:23.07.
Kenya’s Priscah Jeptoo took silver while Russia's Tatyana Arkhipova Petrova won bronze with pre-race favourite Mary Keitany finishing fourth.
Rwanda now has her hopes resting on cyclist Adrien Niyonshuti and Jean Pierre Mvuyekure in the men’s full marathon to salvage the nation’s pride.