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Keitany grabs third title at Great North Run

Mary Keitany breasts the tape to defend her Great North Run crown on Sunday. PHOTO/IAAF/AFP

NAIROBI, Kenya, Sep 10 – Kenya’s Mary Keitany stormed to her third Great North Run in 1:05:59, the third fastest women’s time in the race’s history set on Sunday in United Kingdom.

London Marathon winner Keitany surged to her third victory after she broke clear of the pack in the opening stages and set a tough pace as she finished one minute and 45 seconds clear of fellow Kenyan Vivian Cheruiyot, who won last year.

Caroline Kipkirui, who pushed hard to keep pace with compatriot Keitany up until the eight-mile mark, finished third in 1:09:52.

Fourth place went to another Kenyan, Magdalyne Masai, who had further reason for joy after Robertson proposed to her at the finish line after his race.

-Farah wins fourth successive title-

Triumphant again – Mo Farah winning the 2016 Great North Run (Mark Shearman) © Copyright

Britain’s Mo Farah won the men’s race for a record-breaking fourth successive year.

Farah, a four-time Olympic champion, saw off a determined challenge from New Zealand’s Jake Robertson in the closing stages of the race to finish in a time of one hour and six seconds.

The 34-year-old is the first athlete to win the Great North Run four times in a row.

He is now level in terms of most victories with Kenya’s Benson Masya, who was champion four times in the 1990s.

Farah, who last month finished his glittering track career with a thrilling 5,000m victory at the Diamond League final in Zurich, produced his trademark ‘Mobot’ celebration in Newcastle as he crossed the line.

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Robertson was six seconds back in second place, with Ethiopia’s Feyisa Lilesa coming third.

Farah told the BBC after his season-concluding race: “That was really, really tough. I’m sore everywhere – I’ve never been this sore!

“With four miles to go I was just hanging on, gritting my teeth.

“As we got closer, I managed to believe in myself and dig, and I was thinking ‘if I can just sit on him (Robertson), at the end I can sprint’.

“I’m so pleased with how the season has gone. I’ll go on a little holiday with the missus and then come back fresh.

“I’m looking forward to sticky toffee pudding and apple pie!”

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