Posted June. 30, 2005 06:27,
The Seoul International Marathon has become an international event.
According to the International Association of Athletics Federation (IAAF) homepage, the men and women competition winners` records in 2005 Seoul International Marathon, jointly hosted by Dong-A Ilbo, the Korea Athletic Federation (KAF), and the city of Seoul were ranked third and seventh, respectively, among the best records of each categories from all the marathon championships held in the first half of 2005.
Zhou Chunxiu, a Chinese female athlete who won the title with a 2:23:24 record at Seoul International Marathon held in March 13, was ranked at third on the list after British athlete Paula Radcliffe (2:17:42) from the London Marathon and Jelena Prokopcuka (2:22:56) of Latvia, who won the Osaka Marathon. It is the first marathon event held in Korea that produced a record within third-best on the list.
In the male athletes` category, William Kipsang of Kenya, who won the event with a 2:08:53 record, was also ranked at 7th overall on the list headed by fellow Kenyan Martin Lel, who posted a 2:07:26 record in the London Marathon,
Thanks to the record of Gert Thys of South Africa, last year`s men`s champion (with a winning time of 2:07:06) in the Seoul International Marathon, who placed sixth in the world in 2004, and Top 10 finishes for two years in a row, the event has solidified its reputation as one of the world`s top-tier marathons.
Meanwhile, a KAF official announced that 5TV, a sports channel of China`s CCTV, acquired the rights to broadcast the 2006 event in China. The Seoul International Marathon has been broadcast by the Korea Broadcasting System (KBS) and Chinese and Japanese broadcasters for four years. It is currently the only Asian marathon event broadcast in those three nations.