Records tumble in the Malaga Marathon

Marathon runners making their way down the Alameda Principal on Sunday.
Marathon runners making their way down the Alameda Principal on Sunday. / Ñito Salas
  • A record 3,263 participants out of the 3,507 who started the 42-kilometre race finished. The race's men's record was broken by a minute and the women's by four on Sunday

Records were broken as Malaga hosted its annual marathon on Sunday, with more than 3,500 participants taking to the streets in the winter sun.

Kenyan Martin Cheruiyot beat the men's race record (which was set by Ethiopian Lemi Dumecha last year) by a minute, and improved on his personal best by four and a half. His finishing time was an impressive 2h.10:08. The second and third-placed athletes, Cheruiyot's fellow countrymen Elud Kibet and Moses Gaikarira, also managed to beat Dumecha's record.

At 2h.27:56, the women's winner, Ethiopian Selamawit Tsegaw, also broke the record, this time by an impressive four minutes. Her compatriot Gelane Senbete came in second place, while the third spot was occupied by Kenyan Rebecca Korir.

The highest-placed local in the men's race was Manuel López Méndez, who came in at 2h.44:28. In the women's, Janine Lima, of Ecuadorian heritage but resident in Marbella, came in 19th place.

An impressive 4,150 signed up for the race, which easily beat the previous record of 3,750, although it should be noted that only 3,507 ended up taking part. Of these, 3,263, or 93 per cent, managed to finish the race - a new record.

Watching or taking part were around 7,000 people from 77 different countries, all able to take in Malaga and some of its most emblematic locations, including Calle Larios (complete with Christmas illuminations), the Paseo del Parque and the port.

Many ran in aid of charitable causes. For instance, three people came from Ciudad Real to run on Sunday for Asociación Mil Metas Por Tí, a foundation set up by Davis Martínez and his partner to raise funds for hemiparesis in infants, a motor disorder that their daughter suffers from.

Some ran on their own; one such figure was 65-year-old ex-serviceman Ángel Nicolás Rodríguez, from Seville, who has completed 30 marathons in just ten years.

But if participants took part at different speeds and for different reasons, all crossed the line with the same smile on their face.