Chevron Houston Marathon: Fastest Marathon of the year, by Alfons Juck, Note by Larry Eder



Teshome Gelena, ran a tremendous 2:07:37 for a new course record at the Chevron Houston marathon on January 17, 2010, photo by

The world will see something similar to the piece, written by EME News deity Alfons Juck, on the Chevron Houston Marathon and the Aramco Houston Marathon. Note that I will be doing a review of the event tomorrow, as I am jumping in planes and buses to get home today!

The event is one of the best staged events I have ever seen, from the finish area where the 5k finishers finish on one side and the half marathon on the other side, at the same time! The marathoners take over from the 5k finishers later in the day. But, three course records in one day, when, as Race Director Brent Koch told RBR, "One year and three days ago, we had a record that had not been touched in years! Now, three course records, and three sell out races! Wow!"

Managing Director, Steven Karpas and the marathon and half marathon teams should get kudos for the superb orchestration of the three events, plus a robut Expo, over the three days. What was also fascinating, was that by the time I took my walk on Sunday afternoon, about 4.30, most of the race signs and stages were gone, and the preparations were on for 2011!

Teyba Erkesso ran a superb 2:23:53, her personal best and the Chevron Houston women's marathon best, for the third course record of the day!
Photo by


HOUSTON (USA, Jan 17): Three of the four open course records of the 38th Chevron Houston Marathon and Aramco Houston Half-Marathon fell, made possible by strong fields, beautifully cool and sunny weather and a more than 200,000 USD prize money purse. Writes RRW. Olympic medalist Shalane Flanagan bagged the first of the three records in women‘s half marathon contest, which also served as the USA Championships with 1:09:41 debut. Unheralded Teshome Gelana of Ethiopia got the next course record, winning the men‘s marathon in an improbable 2:07:37. During the 2009 season, Gelana ran 2:14:32 at Barcelona, 2:21:23 at Hannover and 2:12:03 at Warsaw (his personal best was 2:11:58 set in Israel in 2008). After winning the low-key, high altitude Addis Ababa Marathon last December, Gelana said he was pointing specifically for Houston, then potentially even bigger races later. His teammate and compatriot Zembaba Yigeze got second, also setting a personal best (2:08:27). The fastest man in the field coming into the race, Kenya‘s Jason Mbote who has a personal best time of 2:07:37, finished third in 2:08:58. American Brett Gotcher made a very solid debut in 2:10:36, finishing seventh. Teyba Erkesso got the third and final course record, easily defending her title in the marathon and breaking her own course and personal best in 2:23:53, with a little pacing assistance from Kafime Adillo, her husband, who was also entered in the race. Russia‘s Magarita Plaksina (2:28:44, PB) and Ethiopia‘s Alemitu Abera (2:31:01) rounded out the podium. Paige Higgins, who like Gotcher runs for coach Greg McMillan in the Team USA Arizona program in Flagstaff, finished fourth in 2:33:22, just shy of her personal best. The national men´s half-marathon title went to Antonio Vega in 1:01:54 life-time best. Over 30 000 entrants were registered in all races.

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