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Posted: May 18, 2009  : Add to Mixx! Subscribe to stories like this

(RWire) Athletics: Kitwara, Erkesso Win 98th ING Bay to Breakers 12K

Men's champion Kitwara shatters course record, ties world record, takes Battle to the Breakers and earns $40,000 overall

From Eva Wong

SAN FRANCISCO - (May 17, 2009) - First-time ING Bay to Breakers 12K participant Sammy Kitwara of Kenya made race history amid more than 62,000 participants, world class athletes, weekend runners and enthusiasts of all ages. Finishing in 33 minutes, 31 seconds - beating Ismael Kirui's 1993 race time by 11 seconds - Kitwara's performance earned the $25,000 Battle to the Breakers prize, the $7000 first place prize, the $5000 ING Hayes Street Summit prize as the first male to reach the highest elevation point and a $3000 bonus for breaking the course record, for a total prize purse of $40,000.

"Sammy's awe-inspiring performance truly embodies the amazing talent of our elite athletes and underscores our 98-year history as an exhilarating, world class footrace," noted Angela Fang, the race's general manager.

In the Battle to the Breakers (men vs. women), the professional women had a 4 minute, 40 second headstart (based on the course records - 33:42 vs. 38:22), and Kitwara, 22, passed the last woman Teyba Erkesso of Ethiopia near the end of the 7.46 mile point-to-point race. Erkesso, 26, won the women's race in a fast 38:29 (#6 all-time) and defeated defending champion Lineth Chepkurui of Kenya by six seconds.

The top Americans were 2004 Olympic bronze medalist Deena Kastor and Justin Young who finished third (39:04) and eighth (36:05), respectively.

Despite the unseasonably warm weather, the race attracted 31,626 registered runners, who along with an estimated 31,000 nonregistered participants brought the race total to more than 62,000. The race's official after party, ING Footstock, also saw record crowds of participants, as well as race supporters.

"This success of this year's race was the result of a City coming together in support of one mission: to safeguard the future of the ING Bay to Breakers 12K. We thank the residents, civic leaders and City services of San Francisco for helping us to continue to offer this vibrant, iconic event," added Fang.

98th ING Bay to Breakers 12K
San Francisco, CA, Sunday, May 17, 2009

1) Sammy Kitwara (KEN), 33:31#, $40,000*
2) Tilahun Regassa (ETH), 34:15, $3000
3) John Yuda (TAN), 34:23, $2000
4) John Korir (KEN), 34:53, $1250
5) Silas Sang (KEN), 34:54, $750
6) Gilbert Okari (KEN), 35:18 
7) Gilbert Koech (KEN), 36:01
8) Justin Young (USA / CO), 36:05, $1000
9) Mike Sayenko (USA / WA), 36:36, $500
10) Josh Moen (USA / IA), 36:53, $250
11) Peter Gilmore (USA / CA), 37:41, $750

#course record (previous, 33:42, Ismael Kirui (KEN), 1993); ties U.S. All-Comers and World Records by Joseph Kimani at the 1997 Arts Festival 12K (wind documentation needed for potential records)
*includes $25,000 Battle to the Breakers bonus, $5000 ING Hayes Street Summit bonus and $3000 course record bonus
1) Dennis Simonaitis, 46, UT, 41:37, $1000

1) Teyba Erkesso (ETH), 38:29, $7000
2) Lineth Chepkurui (KEN), 38:35, $8000*
3) Deena Kastor (USA / CA), 39:04, $3000
4) Edna Kiplagat (KEN), 40:30, $1250
5) Jane Kibii (KEN), 40:40, $750
6) Teyba Naser (ETH), 40:47
7) Liliya Shobukhova (RUS), 41:04
8) Katie McGregor (USA / MN), 41:29, $500
9) Mariya Konovalova (RUS), 41:37
10) Kiyoko Shimahara (JPN), 42:07
Top Bay Area woman: Melinda Dinapoli (USA / CA), 47:13, $750
*includes $5000 ING Hayes Street Summit bonus

1) Midori Sperandeo, 42, CA, 44:53, $1250 (also third U.S.)

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