Edwin Soi defeats two world champions at BoClassics

Wilson Kiprop and Edwin Soi (Foto: BOclassic/Mosna)

Again, Edwin Soi is the king of the BOclassic. The Olympic third of 2008 from Kenya displaced even two reigning world champions winning before Wilson Kiprop and Imane Merga. The three-times world champion Vivian Cheruiyot repeated her last year’s victory.

Darling of the public Silvia Weissteiner was brilliant third behind the Ethiopian Afera Godfay. The 37th edition of the BOclassic, Bozen/Bolzano’s New Year’s Eve Run was in strong Kenyan hand. Cheruiyot and Soi made for victory number 19 and number 20 for their country in the best cast New Year’s Eve Run of the world. Kenya managed to win the double for the fifth time.Soi’s victory also was the 50th podium place for Kenya, and Kiprop topped to the 51st.

The decision in the race for the men was decided in a super exciting finish and in the very last metres. Half marathon world champion Kiprop, who virtually ran the run, was caught by his countryman Edwin Soi in the very last meters. Soi ran the 10 km track in 28:16 minutes. This has been the fastest victory time since 1998. 
Kiprop even ran his personal best over 10 km (28:17.1). For the Olympic third Soi this was already the fourth victory in Bozen/Bolzano. Thus, only one victory is missing to the success of record holder Serhiy Lebid. The ninefold cross European champion had to content himself with the seventh place. 
Only for half of the race could last year’s winner and Cross world champion Imane Merga keep up with the two Kenyan. Eventually he finished third with a deficit of 41 seconds. 1500m European champion Arturo Casado from Spain could not get beyond the 11th position.
Women's Race
In the women's race, 5000m world champion Vivian Cheruiyot made for the expected victory in the 5 km distance. However, the reigning world best runner was chased by the only 20-year-old Ethiopian Asfera Godfay until the home straight. 
This may have been caused by the slow rhythm of the whole run. With a time of 16:03.0 Cheruiyot lay for nearly half a minute behind of the German Kathrin Ullrich’s track record of 1991. But Cheruiyot promised to come back next year with an even stronger presentation – she will hopefully come back as Olympic winner.

"I am happy to have won again because after one month of training in the course of the preparation for Olympics I am not in top form," said Cheruiyot.

"I am sorry that I was not faster, but I promise to come back next year and triumph again  - hopefully as an Olympic champion. The atmosphere In Bozen /Bolzano is unique with all the spectators on this great track ."
Local hero Silvia Weissteiner was brilliant third and thus mounted the podium for the second time after 2006. Britain's Justin Heslop finished 7th.
Winners Quotes
"The BOclassic is definitely my run. I am so happy about my victory. This was the best possible start for 2012 which will be a decisive one for me. My aim is the 5000m-run in the Olympic Games. I was quite confident before the run because I have defeated Merga recently. I really want to become record holder of this event. I am sorry that last year I did not win, otherwise this would have been my fifth victory in a row. But with my 25 years I still have time to catch up with Lebid. " Edwin Soi (1.)
"I headed the run for a long time and thus it is logical that I am a bit disappointed. I tried to  outdistance Edwin, but today I was not successful. Nevertheless, I am happy because I was faster then ever over 10 km (N.B. 28:17). For 2012, my aims are the Olympic 10.000 m run as well as a new personal best in the half marathon." Wilson Kiprop (2.)
"Due to an injury on my foot I could not prepare as I wanted. And thus I am happy with the third place. That was all I could make today. I hope to return next year to Bozen/Bolzano with an Olympic medal." Imane Merga (3.)
"It was a great feeling to standing on the podium beside the world champion, but what was even better was to run shoulder to shoulder with the world champion. This was a completely new feeling for me. Standing on the podium of such an important run for the second time, is really something special. The atmosphere when I ran into the Walther Square and was cheered by the public gave me goosebumps every single time. Today I felt great from the very beginning." Silvia Weissteiner (3.)
Selected Results
Men (10 km): 
1. Edwin Soi (Kenya) 28:16.6;
2. Wilson Kiprop (Kenya) 28:17.1;
3. Imane Merga (Ethiopia) 28:57;
4. Abdelaziz El Idrissi (Morocco) 28:59;
5. Abdelhatif Meftah (France) 29:02;
6. Stefano La Rosa (Italy) 29:17;
7. Serhiy Lebid (Ukrainia) 29:20;
8. Fernando Silva (Portugal) 29:25;
9. Vasyl Matviychuk (Ukrainia) 29:37;
10. Markus Ploner (Italy) 29:39.
Women (5 km):
1. Vivian Cheruiyot (Kenya) 16:03.0;
2. Afera Godfay (Ethiopia) 16:03,4;
3. Silvia Weissteiner (Italy) 16:14;
4. Fatna Maraoiu (Italy) 16:27;
5. Ana Dias (Portugal) 16:29;
6. Agnes Tschurtschenthaler (Italy) 16:31;
7. Justina Heslop (Great Britain) 16:35;
8. Valentina Bellotti (Italy) 16:40;
9. Krisztina Papp (Hungary) 16:45;
10. Ibtissam Lakhouad (Morocco) 16:47.
Find the complete winner’s list of the Ladurner amateur run and the Raiffeisen Youth Run.

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