In one of the Olympics’ most difficult tests of endurance, Kenyan Jemima Sumgong came first to take the Gold medal on Rio 2016.
Rio de Janeiro (AFP)― Jemima Sumgong made the most of a kick with 6km to run to win Kenya’s first ever Olympic women’s marathon gold on Sunday.
Jemima Sumgong, winner of this year’s London marathon, timed 2hr 24min 04sec for Kenya’s first-ever women’s marathon gold over the 42km-long course that finished at Rio’s Sambodromo with temperatures hitting 28 degrees Celsius (82F).
“It was very hot but everybody had to get through the heat. I had to control my body and listen to my body very carefully,” said Jemima Sumgong.
“I had prepared that I would move out at kilometer 35 and my body was responding very well, as well as my movement.
“I am very grateful. This is the first gold medal for Kenya (at Rio 2016).”
Just before the finish, a group of protesters carrying banners climbed over barriers and ran onto the course before being intercepted by police on motorbikes. Runners were not disturbed by the protests.
Bahrain claimed only their second medal in any sport when Kenyan-born Eunice Kirwa took silver, 9sec adrift of Jemima Sumgong, while defending world champion Mare Dibaba of Ethiopia claimed bronze, at 26sec.
Sumgong admitted, however, that she knew victory was hers with 2km to run, saying it made up for her disappointing showing at the 2008 Beijing Olympics.
“I was in Beijing but I was pretty disappointed that I wasn’t able to win a medal or make it on the podium, but I knew one time, one day, I’d be somewhere,” she said.
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