- 24-year-old Ethiopian runner Shura Kitata won the men's race in the elite-only Virgin Money London Marathon, crossing the line in 2:05:41.
Shura Kitata finished second in the 2018 London Marathon, behind world record holder Eliud Kipchoge. This weekend, he credited fellow Ethiopian, Kenesia Bekele for his win, speaking via an interpreter to the BBC, Kitata said, 'Kenenisa Bekele was helping me for this race and he advised me how to run. I trained for the same course, I am very happy to win the race.'
Other stand out performances for the young runner include victories at the 2017 Rome Marathon and 2017 Frankfurt Marathon title victories, where he finished respectively with the times 2:07:30 and 2:05:50.
Kitata was born on a family farm in central Ethiopia, not far from the capital of Addis Ababa, and has four sisters and three brothers. As a youngster in school, he learned quickly about his country’s great marathon history.
The names Abebe Bikila, Kenenisa Bekele and Derartu Tulu struck a particular chord. They seemed to be everywhere—in textbooks, newspapers, and on the radio. 'Even before I started running, I knew about the marathon, and thought it very exciting,' Kitata said.
He began running in grade school. When he performed well, he just rode the wave. Kitata finished his first marathon five years ago in Shanghai (3rd, 2:08:50), and soon joined an elite training group in Addis.
Now he appears poised to join the ranks of great Ethiopian marathoners—like the ones he read about and heard so much about during his childhood. 'It would be a great joy to add my story to the stories of those who came before me,' he said.
You Might Also Like