Amanal Petros and Matea Parlov Kostro took the ADAC Marathon Hannover, smashing the course records and celebrating their biggest career wins. In fine weather conditions Germany’s Amanal Petros triumphed with the finishing time of 2:07:02, improving the course best of 2:08:32 set by South Africa’s Lusapho April in 2013 by 90 seconds.
The national record holder missed his PB by just 35 seconds but he is the first German to have run under the Olympic qualifying standard of 2:08:10. Kenyans Denis Chirchir and Frederick Kibii clocked personal bests of 2:07:17 and 2:08:09 respectively for second and third place.
Croatia’s Matea Parlov Kostro dominated the women’s race and ran a huge personal best of 2:25:45. The marathon silver medallist from the European Championships in Munich 2022 improved the course record by 30 seconds and was well under the Olympic qualifying time for the 2024 Paris Olympic Games (2:26:50). Four years ago Kenya’s Rachel Mutgaa ran 2:26:15 in Hannover. Pauline Thitu of Kenya clocked 2:29:25 and Mexico’s Risper Gesabwa finished in 2:29:49 for second and third places on Sunday.
It was the third time after 1992 and 2013 that both course records were broken in Hannover. Including races at shorter distances organisers registered over 19,000 athletes from around 100 nations for the ADAC Hannover Marathon, which is a World Athletics Road Race Label event. Germany’s defending champion Hendrik Pfeiffer ran the half marathon event and won with 62:58. He is preparing for the Boston Marathon in April.
With the pace not as even as planned two pacemakers led a group of five runners through the half marathon mark in 63:30. Originally a split time of 63:00 was planned. The problem seemed to be that the runners right behind the pacers did not really go with their pace while Amanal Petros was at the end of the group. With a split time of 1:30:39 at 30k the German record of 2:06:27 was more or less out of reach. The pace at that stage pointed towards a 2:07:30 finish.
When the pacemakers dropped back shortly after the 30k mark Amanal Petros took the lead. For a short period his training partner Denis Chirchir and Frederick Kibii could hold on but then they could no longer cope with the pace of the German, who was fourth in the European Championships’ marathon in 2022. The national record holder was able to increase the pace in the final quarter of the race, but his personal best was out of reach today. “Because of the uneven pace my muscles started to become tired earlier and I realized this at around 25k. But overall I came through very well,“ said Amanal Petros. “It was the first time that I ran a German city marathon and this victory means a lot to me. It is a huge motivation for the next races.“
In the women’s race Matea Parlov Kostro ran 2:25 pace from the start. It was around the half way mark, which she passed in 72:34, when Pauline Thitu and Risper Gesabwa were no longer able to follow the Croatian. The gap constantly widened and the race for victory was more or less over a few kilometers later.
While Matea Parlov Kostro, who became the first Croatian woman to win a European Championships’ medal in a running event in Munich last year, could not quite hold on to her pace she was ahead by more than a kilometer when she finished in 2:25:45 in front of the impressive Hannover townhall. “I am really happy with my personal best and with the qualification for the Olympic Games. Paris will be my second Olympics,“ said Matea Parlov Kostro, who can be confident that her performance in Hannover will be good enough for Olympic selection. With her PB she moved up to second place behind Romania’s Delvine Meringor (2:20:49) in the current European season’s list. For Matea Parlov Kostro the victory was her first in a marathon. „While my biggest success was surely the silver medal at the European Championships this was my greatest career victory today.“
1. Amanal Petros GER 2:07:02
2. Denis Chirchir KEN 2:07:17
3. Frederick Kibii KEN 2:08:09
4. Jonathan Maiyo KEN 2:11:33
5. Geofrey Kiboy KEN 2:11:42
6. Amos Birgen KEN 2:13:09
1. Matea Parlov Kostro CRO 2:25:45
2. Pauline Thitu KEN 2:29:25
3. Risper Gesabwa MEX 2:29:49
4. Natascha Mommers GER 2:31:20
5. Nina Chydenius FIN 2:35:21
6. Aleksandra Brzezinska POL 2:37:50