Saturday, May 2, 2009

Two Kenyans Win Indy's Mini Marathon

With temperatures barely hovering above 50 degrees and sunshine mixing with overcast skies, the conditions could not have been any better during the today's 500 Festival Mini-Marathon in Indianapolis.

Women's race winner: Janet Cherobon, 30, made it three straight Mini-Marathon wins in a row. A native of Kenya who lives in Rome, Ga., she won in a personal-best time of 1:12.22 – more than two and a half minutes in front of second-place Anzhelika Averkova, a Ukraine native now living in New Jersey. Cherobon’s time was well below her 2008 winning time of 1:14.53.

Kenyan Festus Langat, who lives in West Chester, Pa., made the most of his first appearance in the Mini-Marathon, winning the men’s race in 1:03.55 to finish comfortably in front of fellow countryman Ernest Kimeli. Langat said he took the lead at the 5K mark and never was seriously challenged after that.

Tony Iniguez became a four-time champ in the wheelchair division, bettering his 2008 winning time by more than two minutes. The Illinois resident won the event in 44:59, coming in more than five minutes ahead of his closest competition.

The 500 Festival, a not-for-profit volunteer organization, was created in 1957 to organize civic events celebrating the greatest race in the world. Over the past 52 years, the 500 Festival has grown to become one of the largest festivals in the nation. Last year, over 500,000 Hoosiers and visitors participated in nearly 50 events and programs throughout the month of May.

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