March 10th 2024

20 de March de 2023

Marius Kimutai and Zeineba Yimer break the double record of the Zurich Marató Barcelona 2023

  • The Bahrain athlete Marius Kimutai has lowered the 2022 record of this race by 47 seconds (02:05:06h).
  • On the other hand, the Ethiopian athlete Zeineba Yimer Worku has improved the best time of the race in the female category by 3 minutes and 27 seconds, with a time of 02:19:44h.
  • Thousands of participants have taken part in the great celebration of popular athletics in Barcelona, with a 25% of female participation and a 55% of international athletes.

19.03.2023 – This Sunday, Father’s Day, the great athletics festival of the 44th Zurich Marató Barcelona was celebrated at a record pace, with a temperature of 13°C at 8:30 am (race start time), 77% humidity and a cloudy sky on a day with ideal weather conditions for running. With more than 15,000 inscriptions, thousands of runners took the start in Avenida María Cristina and lived the moments before the start between excitement and nerves, enlivened with the melody of the Catalan musicians Xavi Duch and Anna Hebia who have interpreted ‘Barcelona’ by Montserrat Caballé and Freddie Mercury.

The race, organised by the Barcelona City Council and RPM Sports, has been for the first time this year 2023 a Gold Label race, as well as having a 25% of female participation and a 55% of international runners, coming from up to 119 different countries. Likewise, the city of Barcelona has been involved with the event, encouraging the participants in the more than 25 animation points along the more than 42 kilometres of this fast and monumental circuit.

Fourth men’s and women’s record for the race in 4 years
For the fourth consecutive year, the men’s and women’s records of the Zurich Marató Barcelona, one of the fastest marathons in Spain and Europe, have been beated. In the men’s category, Bahrain’s athlete Marius Kimutai (02:05:06h) managed to beat the previous best time of this race, set in 2022 by Yihuniligne Adane (02:05:53h), by 47 seconds. In second place was the Moroccan athlete Othmane El Goumri (02:05:12h) and third was the Turkish Kaan Kigen Özbilen (02:05:38h). Özbilen was leading the race until km 35, when El Goumri and Kimutai caught up with him, only to drop off at km 39, and they fought a very close duel for the first position until the final straight, where the Bahraini overtook the Moroccan.

It is also worth mentioning that the ninth classified, Ilias Ouani (02:07:10h) has achieved a new record for his country, Italy. In addition, the best Spanish and Catalan athlete was Carles Montllor, in 20th place overall (02:25:11h).

Marius Kimutai: “I didn’t expect to win today because there was a very good level of competition, but finally I was able to achieve my goal. I am very happy and I feel very satisfied with all the work I have done to achieve my personal best here in Barcelona. Since I finished fifth here in 2021, I think the course has improved and it’s a great experience because it’s a flat and fast course”.

In the women’s category, the Ethiopian athlete Zeineba Yimer Worku has considerably improved the best time of the race in the women’s category set last year, reducing it by 3 minutes and 27 seconds, with a time of 02:19:44h. In second place, Kenyan athlete Selly Chepyego Kapitch crossed the finish line (02:20:03h) and Romanian Delvine Meringor was third (02:20:49h), all of them under Meseret Gebre Dekebo’s 2022 record (02:23:11h).

The Kenyan and the Ethiopian led the women’s elite group throughout the race, until km 40, when Yimer went solo to the finish line. On the other hand, the best national athlete was Eva Ledesma, the tenth-fastest woman (02:43:49h).

Zeineba Yimer: “I am very happy to have won today in Barcelona. I had a very good feeling and I was able to give my best on a spectacular race”.

A great running party in Barcelona
Thousands of runners have lived this Sunday the experience of completing the 42km in the best city in the world according to the Telegraph Travel 2022 ranking. Among them, personalities from the world of sport such as former football player Víctor Sánchez (02:53:05h), who described his first experience as a marathon runner and in Barcelona: “I wanted to achieve the goal of running under two hours and 55 minutes and I am very persistent. Congratulations for the organisation of the race, it is a fast and very beautiful marathon. It is a privilege to run in such a great atmosphere”.

Likewise, from the political sphere, the ex-minister of Health and current deputy of the Parliament of Catalonia as head of the opposition, Salvador Illa, after having participated in the eDreams Mitja Marató Barcelona 2023, has also taken part in this day: “The neighbours of Barcelona have accompanied me cheering me up during the whole race with a lot of strength. I have run in a group and that has helped me to beat my personal best in 03:42:36h”.

Also, Alex Roca has become the first athlete in the world with a 76% physical disability to complete a marathon. A goal he achieved this Sunday when he crossed the finish line of the Zurich Marató Barcelona 2023 with a time of 5:50:51h.

During the whole weekend, both athletes and citizens have enjoyed a real sports party in Barcelona. On Friday 17th of March and Saturday 18th of March the atmosphere was already heating up with the Expo Sports , where more than 50,000 visitors have passed by. Also, on Saturday 18th of March, the Breakfast Run (more than 1,8000 participants) and the Kids Race (more than 700 participants) took place.

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