Joyce Njeru and Patrick Kipngeno extend World Cup winning streaks

Giir di Mont

by Trail Running staff |

Joyce Njeru and Patrick Kipngeno continued their unbeaten runs in the Valsir World Mountain Running Cup at the Giir di Mont on Saturday.

Both took their fourth straight wins in this year's series as they raced over 9km in the Premana area of Italy in the "short uphill" category.

With the women running first, Kenya's Njeru made her move 2km into the opening fast 5km. Six-time world champion Andrea Mayr of Austria battled to come back at her on the uphill section but Njeru ultimately held on to win by 20 seconds. Madalina Florea of Romania, silver medallist in the up and down race at the recent European Championships, was another 25 seconds back in third. Britain's Scout Adkin was fourth.

In the men's race, Kipngeno pushed the pace from the off and was followed by fellow Kenyans Lengen Lolkurraru and Philemon Kiriago. Kipngeno crossed the line in 46:09, 49 seconds ahead of Kiriago with French and European champion Sylvain Cachard another 24 seconds behind. Italy's Andrea Rostan and Ireland's Zac Hannah were next in.

The following day saw the Giir du Mont host the next round of the World Cup, with runners in the "long mountain" category taking on 32km with 2400m of ascent. Petro Mamu and Elisa Desco prevailed in exciting races.

Mamu crossed the line in 3:11:29, 13 seconds in front of Italy's Cristian Minoggio with Italy's Mattia Gianola third. Mamu and Minoggio were clear from early on and traded the lead several times before the Eritran pulled away on the final descent back to town. Gianola was well back in 3:20:20.

In the women's race, American Hillary Gerardi made the early running but Kenya's twice world champion Lucy Murigi was never more than a minute back as Desco bided her time, more than two minutes behind after 5km.

Murigi, who was seventh in the previous day's World Cup race, passed Gerardi around halfway as Desco closed on both. The Italian Desco made her definitive move on the final descent to Premana, clocking 4:00:57 to win by 44 seconds. Gerardi was third in 4:06:06.


Pic credit: Marco Gulberti

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