Organized by a master hand, the 2022 edition of the Beirut Marathon crowned the Ethiopian Mitku Dekeba and his compatriot Mulugojam Ambi.
The whole city of Beirut vibrated again on Sunday, for the space of a few hours, to the rhythm of “its” marathon. In glorious weather, more than 12,000 asphalt enthusiasts lined up at the start of the various races of the 2022 edition of the Beirut Marathon, making this event the biggest sporting event of the year.
For the twentieth anniversary of this unmissable sporting celebration, the Beirut Marathon Association (BMA, its acronym in English), announced last week that 12,000 participants, representing 60 countries, had registered for the right to tumble into the streets of the Lebanese capital, despite the precarious situation that the country is going through.
For the 2022 edition, the organizers wanted to pay tribute to the city by adopting the slogan “I am Beirut”. Perfect organization, combined with impressive discipline, no incidents to report, all against the backdrop of an extraordinary festive atmosphere. A real triumph for the organizers, in the forefront of which is May el-Khalil, founder of the BMA. Note that the Beirut Marathon has been part of the IAAF Road Race Label Events international circuit since February 2014, in the “Silver Label” category.
Logistically, some 50 ambulances, 400 Red Cross first aiders and 600 security guards were at the disposal of the organizers to ensure maximum safety for all participants in this event.
Easy victory for Dekeba
The 42.195 km finish line did not hold any real surprises in terms of technical results, insofar as the Ethiopian Mitku Dekeba, one of the announced favorites, won the race ahead of his compatriot Muletaa Felate and the Kenyan Benjamin Malot. Good performance from Dekeba, who nevertheless remains far from the record held by Jackson Limo.
Already in the lead at halfway, Dekeba won with 2h 14′ 21” after an impressive solo breakaway, relegating Muletaa Felate to seven minutes!
On the Lebanese side, Saleh Zeaïter set the best local time (2h 37′ 57 “). Hussein Awada and Moustapha Daoud were ranked second and third.
Among the ladies, it was the Ethiopian, Mulugojam Ambi, who took first place with a time of 2h 28′ 57″, ahead of Sheila Kiplagat (Kenya). Lelse Bero completes the podium.
Gorgeous Chirine Njeim
On the Lebanese side, the star runner of Inter Lebanon, Chirine Njeim, took first place in the 42.195 km by signing a good time of 3h 02′ 44 “, ahead of Kathia Rached and Nada Rizk. The female athletes of the Inter also monopolized the first four places in the half-marathon.
Finally, the golden palm of this marathon goes unquestionably to the organizing company BMA (Beirut Marathon Association), which welcomed 12,000 participants from 60 countries, in an atmosphere of celebration, conviviality and respect at a time of the most tense and most troubled in the history of Lebanon.
Once again, May el-Khalil and her team have succeeded in their formidable bet stemming from a dream that began twenty years ago. Hats off to the organizers, to the members of the Red Cross, to the Internal Security Forces and to the Lebanese army, as well as to the volunteers of all stripes who were able, for one day, to bring together the Lebanese, all tendencies policies combined.
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“I am Beirut” in a big party atmosphere!