Ethiopian distance runner Jemal Yimer (AFP / Getty Images)
Ethiopia’s fastest man and woman over 13.1 miles this year have been named on the national team for the IAAF/Trinidad Alfonso World Half Marathon Championships Valencia 2018 on 24 March.
Six months after finishing fifth over 10,000m at the IAAF World Championships London 2017, 21-year-old Jemal Yimer made an impressive half marathon debut in Ras al-Khaimah earlier this month. He finished second in 59:00, the fastest time by an Ethiopian runner since 2012 and putting him third on the Ethiopian all-time list.
He will be joined by the top four finishers from the recent Ethiopian Half Marathon Championships: Getaneh Molla, Betesfa Getahun, Dawit Fikadu and Jiksa Tadesse.
Ruti Aga, winner of the Houston Half Marathon earlier this year, leads the women’s team. The 24-year-old, who finished second at last year’s Berlin Marathon in 2:20:41, won in Houston with a big PB of 1:06:39 to move to fourth on the Ethiopian all-time list.
The top four finishers from the Ethiopian Half Marathon Championships joining Aga on the team are Zeineba Yimer, Meseret Belete, Bekelech Gudeta and Zinash Mekonnen.
Ethiopian Team for Valencia
Men: Dawit Fikadu, Betesfa Getahun, Getaneh Molla, Jiksa Tadesse, Jemal Yimer
Women: Ruti Aga, Meseret Belete, Bekelech Gudeta, Zinash Mekonnen, Zeineba Yimer