Lelisa Desisa is an elite marathoner who knows how to compete. Desisa won NYC once (2018) and two times in Boston (2015, 2013), plus two medals at the world championships (Moscow 2013-silver, Doha-2019-gold). Desisa does not race unless he is ready. Valencia could be a big deal.
Lelisa Desisa and much more
VALENCIA (ESP): World champion Lelisa Desisa is one of the headliners in the top-quality roster for the Valencia Marathon on 6 December. Birhanu Legese, at 2:02:48, is the fastest of 14 sub-2:06 men and a further 21 who have clocked below 2:10 and he remains world No.1 after his win in Tokyo this year. Kinde Atanaw, who won in 2019 in 2:03:51, will be back to defend his title in a race that will be elite-only this year. 2019 Boston and Chicago marathons winner Lawrence Cherono and Leul Gebreselasie, who has run 2:04:02, are also in the field. Kaan Kigen Ã–zbilen, who set his European record of 2:04:16 when second in Valencia last year, is top non-African. Desisa, who has not raced this year, will be joined by Abel Kirui, who preceded him as world champion in 2009 and 2011. 2019 world bronze medallist Amos Kipruto, Abdi Nageeye, Hamid Ben Daoud, Polat Kemboi Arikan and Ayad Lamdassem are among the top Europeans.