Defending champion Festus Talam wins memorable 34th edition of Marathon Eindhoven

The Kenyan runner Festus Talam won the 34th edition of the Marathon Eindhoven after an exciting neck-and-neck final. The 23-year-old winner of last year’s race only managed to shake off his last rival a few metres before the finish line, setting a new personal best with 2:06:13. This was 13 seconds quicker than last year’s finishing time.

Talam’s compatriot Felix Kirwa passed the finish line only a few hundreds of a second after the titleholder, which actually earned Kirwa the same race time. Another favourite in the race, Marius Kipserem, came in at 2:06:43 – good for the third spot on the podium.

For a long time, the wide group of frontrunners stayed close together. The first shift in pace occurred after the 25-km refreshment point, leaving seven athletes at the head of the pack. After more than 30 km, the last pacer Kiptarus retired from the fray, with six athletes battling it out in the tense final stages of the race.

Ultimately, Talam and Kirwa proved to have the deepest reserves, and the two runners sped neck and neck along Vestdijk. The winner of last year’s race gave his all to stay ahead of his fellow countryman, who also has the same age as he does. Both athletes recorded the same finishing time.

Women

In the women’s marathon, the Kenyan Eunice Jeptoo established a new personal record: 2:26:13. This did not threaten the course record set in 2011, of 2:24:33. Second place was taken by Lucy Ndunga, with a time of 2:36:38. Belgian runner Hanna Vandenbussche came in third, with 2:37:30.

First two-day version of Marathon Eindhoven

This was the first year that Marathon Eindhoven was organised over the course of a whole weekend. The 10-km run was moved up to Saturday evening, and the first edition of the new event ‘5KM4ALL’ also took place in an evening setting. On Sunday the youngest participants got a taste of what it’s like to run during the 1-mile Chiquita Mini Marathon. The programme for Sunday was topped off with the IAK City Run (5 km), the Half Marathon and the Marathon. The final runner of the day passed the finish line around 4:30 p.m. and was given a warm welcome by the event’s many staff members and volunteers.

With over 200,000 spectators and close to 50 music points along the course, this running weekend is not only the largest athletic event in North Brabant, but also a wonderful public festival.

Reminisce

We’ll be taking the next few days as a chance to reminisce on a fantastic weekend. Keep an eye on our website and social media feeds for more images of the 2017 Marathon. And we’ve already started on the commemorative magazine and the after-movie, which you can expect shortly.

We congratulate all the runners with their achievements! And we’d like to thank the spectators and the people of Eindhoven for creating such a wonderful atmosphere across the city!

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