St. Paul, Minn. – October 9, 2016 – After 31 years, Phil Coppess, the humble factory worker from Iowa, is no longer the Medtronic Twin Cities Marathon record holder. Kenya’s Dominic Ondoro broke the 1985 record by more than a minute, stopping the clock at 2:08:51.
Ondoro outpaced the reigning Grandma’s Marathon champ Elisha Barno, his countryman and training partner, who ran 2:10:21 for second, the third fastest time in the event’s history. Completing a Kenyan podium sweep, Rodgers Gesabwa finished third in 2:15:24.
“It was an impressive record,” the soft-spoken Ondoro said of Coppess’s mark. “I’m very happy. It’s my first time to run 2:08.”
Ondoro earned $10,000 for the win and an additional $25,000 for breaking the course record.
In women’s competition, Kenya’s Jane Kibii avenged her four-second defeat last year, winning in 2:30:01. Fellow Kenyan Sarah Kiptoo was second in 2:32:18. Defending women’s champ Serkalem Abrha of Ethiopia finished third in 2:34:58.
Kibii, who sensed she was stronger when the route tipped uphill, took the lead at mile 21 and was not challenged thereafter. “After 21 miles I knew. I knew it was my race and I knew there were more hills,” Kibii explained.
Tyler Byers of Denver won the marathon’s wheelchair competition in 2:02:29, while Samantha Schroth of Greenville, Wisc. topped the women’s division in 2:39:41
In all, 8551 runners finished the 35th running of the Most Beautiful Urban Marathon in America.