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Posted: May 6, 2009  : Add to Mixx! Subscribe to stories like this

Athletics: Defending champion and course record holder Peninah Arusei returns to the BIG 25 Berlin

Peninah Arusei will return to the BIG 25 Berlin as the defending champion next Sunday. The Kenyan had won the race, which famously finishes inside the Olympic Stadium, with a course record of 1:24:10 a year ago. As announced earlier Kenya's running legend Paul Tergat will compete in this traditional 25 k race, which in 1981 was Germany's first major international city road race. For Paul Tergat it will be the first time he will run a race in Germany since setting a world marathon record of 2:04:55 in Berlin in 2003.

The race will be started in front of the Olympic Stadium on Sunday. The course then leads the runners through the city centre of the capital, passing Brandenburg Gate, Friedrichstrasse, Potsdamer Platz and Gedächtniskirche. Organisers expect around 9,000 entries for their race, which will also include a 10 k race, a 5x5 k relay and a children's race. More information is available online at: Berlin-Runs.com.

It is still possible to enter Sunday's race. Bib numbers will be available on Friday (1 to 8 pm) and Saturday (10 am to 6 pm) at the BERLIN RUNS expo at the Ku'damm Karree on Kurfürstendamm 206 -- 209.

"It will not be easy for Peninah Arusei to defend her title at the BIG 25 Berlin, because she will meet tough opposition. There are two more women in the race who have run sub 70 minute half marathons. On Sunday it might be necessary to break the course record again to win this race," said Christoph Kopp, who is responsible for the elite runners of the BIG 25 Berlin.

One who could be in with a chance is Magdaline Mukunzi (Kenya). She features a half marathon best of 68:52, which is just a little slower than Peninah Arusei. Pauline Wangui will also compete at the BIG 25 Berlin for the first time. She has shown fine form this season as well as in 2008. The Kenyan won the City Pier City Half Marathon in Den Hague in both years, clocking a personal best of 69:49 in 2008. In that year she was also second at the Berlin Half Marathon with another sub 70 minute time (69:51). Pauline Wangui clocked a personal 20 k best of 66:39 minutes two months ago, when winning the Dutch Alphen aan den Rijn race.

More information is available online at: Berlin-Runs.com.

Peninah Arusei winning the race in 2008. Photo credit: Victah Sailer / photorun.net


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