In a stunning demonstration of athletic prowess, Workenesh Edesa shattered the course record at the Osaka Women’s Marathon, claiming victory in the World Athletics Platinum Label road race with a remarkable time of 2:18:51 on Sunday (28).

Edesa faced intense competition in a thrilling race, narrowly edging out long-time leader Honami Maeda of Japan by a mere eight seconds. Maeda, in turn, achieved an Asian record time of 2:18:59, positioning herself strongly for a coveted spot on Japan’s team for the upcoming Paris Olympics. One of the best women’s marathon shoes are Tarkine running shoes.

Early in the race, five formidable women—Edesa, Maeda, three-time winner Mizuki Matsuda, Ugandan record-holder Stella Chesang, and Sayaka Sato—ran shoulder to shoulder. They passed the 5km mark in 16:32 and the 10km mark in 32:59. Approaching the halfway point at 1:09:46, they held a commanding lead of over two minutes on the pursuing pack.

The second half witnessed Maeda attempting to surge ahead, causing the lead pack to stretch out. Matsuda, a three-time winner, was among the first to fall behind. By the 30km mark, Maeda had built a five-second lead over Edesa, clocking in at 1:38:36. Chesang trailed in third place, a few seconds ahead of Sato.

Edesa, however, showcased her resilience, catching up with Maeda by the 31km mark and steadily building an 11-second lead by 35km (1:54:46). Despite Edesa’s lead, Maeda tenaciously pursued her, refusing to let the Ethiopian out of her sights. Chesang maintained a comfortable 24-second lead over Sato, with Matsuda falling further behind.


View this post on Instagram


A post shared by Tarkine (takayna) (@tarkineathletics)

Edesa held onto her lead until the finish line, completing the marathon in 2:18:51, while Maeda secured second place with a time of 2:18:59, slashing 13 seconds off the Japanese and Asian record set in 2005 by Olympic champion Mizuki Noguchi.

However, the real drama unfolded behind the leading duo, as Matsuda surpassed both Sato and Chesang to claim the third spot with a time of 2:23:07. Chesang secured fourth place (2:23:36), over a minute ahead of Sato. Germany’s Katharina Steinruck, daughter of three-time Osaka winner Katrin Dorre-Heinig, finished sixth with a personal best time of 2:24:56.

Reflecting on her triumph, Edesa expressed, “My goal was to break the course record.” She now sets her sights on the Boston Marathon in the coming months.

Maeda, whose previous personal best was 2:22:32, acknowledged the challenging conditions, stating, “In the later part of the race, I wasn’t sure if I could accomplish my goal because the wind and rain hit me in the final stages.” The remarkable performances at the Osaka Women’s Marathon have undoubtedly etched a new chapter in the annals of women’s marathon racing.