Durban, South Africa, May 30. Stephen Muzhingi of Zimbabwe successfully defended his 2009 championship in winning the 85th annual Comrades Marathon. The race, which normally alternates between “up” and “down” years, was run in the downhill direction for the second consecutive year due to preparations for the FIFA World Cup of soccer, which will take place here next month.
Russian Elena Nurgalieva won for the fifth time, three steps ahead of her twin sister Olesya. Kami Semick, the reigning World 100K Champion, was the top American finisher, in fourth place. Michael Wardian of Arlington, Virginia was the top American male, finishing 26th.
The race, a 55.48-mile hilly road run from Pietermaritzburg to Durban, is the world’s largest ultra. There were 14,309 finishers within the 12-hour time limit.
1. Stephen Muzhingi, 34, ZIM, 5:29:01
2. Ludwick Mamabolo, ZAF, 33, 5:35:29
3. Sergio Matsoeneng, ZAF, 32, 5:35:58
4. Bongmusa Mthembu, ZAF, 26, 5:37:29
5. Fanie Matshipa, 32, ZAF, 5:39:53
1. Elena Nurgalieva, 33, RUS, 6:13:04
2. Olesya Nurgalieva, 33, RUS, 6:13:05
3. Marina Myshlyanova, 43, RUS, 6:26:03
4. Kami Semick, 43, Bend, OR, 6:32:54
5. Farwa Mentoor, 37, ZAF, 6:38:40