Ugandan marathon runners Immaculate Chemutai and Juliet Chekwel have successfully completed the Tokyo Olympics marathon.
They finished in the 16th and 69th positions respectively.
At the front of the marathon, a Kenyan 1-2 finished the event. Peres Jepchirchir won gold as she placed a time of 2:27.20 ahead of her compatriot Brigid Kosgei who crossed the finish line 16 seconds later.
American marathon runner Molly Seidel won the surprising bronze medal and apparently ran with the leaders from start to finish.
For Uganda’s best results, Immaculate Chemutai clocked in at 2:32:23 finishing 5:03 off the pace in the 16th place. Chekwel ran her season-best 2:42:15 to be the 69th athlete to cross the finish line.
The generally slow-pace marathon started at sunrise at 6 am local time in Tokyo – midnight back in Uganda. And the athletes said it was a grueling test of the athletes’ mental and physical strength.
Conditions rapidly escalated up to about 29 degrees centigrade and 69% humidity along the streets of the Sapporo Odori Park. This is where the marathon took place.
Consequently, fourteen athletes were unable to finish the marathon including world champion Ruth Chepngetich.
Chekwel also slowly trotted to the finish line and needed immediate medical support to help her with immediate recovery.
Mercyline Chelangat will be the last female Ugandan athlete to compete at the Olympics this year. She will be hitting the track for the women’s 10,000m final today.
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