SAN DIEGO, Calif. (June 2, 2013) – Runners from around the world took over the streets of America’s finest city to enjoy live bands and unmatched fanfare along the new race courses at the 16th Rock ‘n’ Roll San Diego
Marathon & ½ Marathon to Benefit The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society on Sunday morning. The race not only welcomed a world-class elite field and television celebrities, but the men’s half marathon winner, Bernard Koech of Kenya, ran the fastest half-marathon time ever run in America and the fastest in the world this year to win with a time of 58 minutes, 41 seconds.
Koech also set a pending U.S. all-comers record for 10 miles with an official split time of 44:47, breaking Haile Gebrselassie’s mark of 44:53 from the 2006 P.F. Chang’s Rock ‘n’ Roll Arizona Half Marathon. Koech’s winning time will not be officially recognized as a record because of the course’s elevation drop, but the 10 mile mark is record standard.
Employing a fast-from-the-start strategy with a 4:25 opening mile, the 25-year-old Kenyan broke away from Eliud Kipchoge and Stephen Kibet just after mile 5. Koech won the half-marathon, breaking the tape at the finish line outside Petco Park in an incredible 58 minutes, 41 seconds – the fastest time run in the word this year, the fastest half marathon ever run on American soil and the third-fastest time in history.
“I was expecting it to be a fast race,” said Koech, who also won the EDP Half Marathon (59:54) in March and leads the Half Marathon Grand Prix Series. “I am in great shape, and after 10K I realized I was going to run a fast time.”
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