World num­ber nine ready for his debut at the Gothen­burg Half Marathon.

He has a per­son­al best well below the cur­rent track record and is ninth in the world this year — the favorite to win the men’s race this year is Kenyan Alex Kibet.

My train­ing part­ner Amos Kipru­to won here last year and I will do my best to help our team secure anoth­er vic­to­ry,” says the 32-year-old.”

The big star of this year's Gothenburg Half Marathon is Kenyan Alex Kibet, who has a personal best of 58.55 from last year's win in the Berlin Half Marathon. This year, he ranks ninth in the world with a time of 59.11 from the same race, although he was beaten by his teammate Sebastian Sawe.

If Kibet runs a similar time in Gothenburg, it would mean a new track record. The current record of 59.35 was set by Richard Mengich in 2016, the only time in the history of the Gothenburg Half Marathon that the winning time has been under an hour.

"I can't promise anything, but I've recovered from injuries and trained well, so my goal is to win. It's my first time running the Gothenburg Half Marathon, but since Amos has won here before and spoken highly of the race, I know what to expect," he says.

"It feels fantastic to be invited here. I've looked at previous winners and watched video clips from past races, and the atmosphere looks really great."

Four more male runners have personal bests under an hour, two of whom have times under the current track record.

• • •

Among the Swedes, David Nilsson is an interesting starter. His personal best is 1:01:40, and earlier this year, he ran his third fastest half marathon of his career when he crossed the finish line in Osaka in 1:02:00.

Nilsson is expected to face tough competition from Eritrean Samuel Russom, who competes for Hässelby and was the best runner representing Swedish clubs last year, finishing in tenth place with a personal best time of 1:02:28. Archie Casteel (Spårvägen) and Kristofer Låås (Keep Up RC) are the other two Swedes in the elite starting field.

"It's been ten years since I last ran the Gothenburg Half Marathon, and my goal is to beat Archie and Kristofer and win the Nordic class. It's been a while since I beat Samuel as well, so that would also be fun," says Nilsson, who doesn't expect to run a time around what he did in Osaka.

"This course is probably two, two and a half minutes slower, so I'll be satisfied if I can finish in the high 63s or low 64s. It's my first race after the training camp in Portugal, and I'm feeling good.

• • •

The women's course record is from 2017 when Kenyan runner Fancy Chemutai finished in 1:07:58, three seconds faster than the record from the previous year. Last year's winner, Tigist Assefa from Ethiopia, made a brave attempt to break it but ended up 22 seconds off.

This year, two runners have personal bests faster than the current course record: Aberash Shilima Kebeda from Ethiopia and Beatrice Chepkemoi Mutai from Kenya. Kebeda ran 1:07:28 earlier this year, while Chepkemoi Mutai was a second slower last year. Two more runners have personal bests under 1:09.

Hanna Lindholm was the top Swedish finisher last year, finishing in tenth place, and is also the Swedish runner with the best personal best in this year's field. This year, the Högby runner has competed in two half marathons with a best time of 1:12:31 in Sevilla in January, and she participated in the Boston Marathon a few weeks ago.

"I had just recovered from an illness then, but now I have started to find my form again and I think I will be in good shape for Göteborgsvarvet. The goal is to be the best Nordic runner. The placement is more important than the time, but I have run Göteborgsvarvet so many times that I know what to expect. Last year, I had a really good feeling throughout the race, I ran as I wanted and was satisfied with my time at the finish," she says.

The winners of the men's and women's categories receive 5,000 euros, the runners-up receive 2,500 euros, the third-place finishers receive 1,200 euros, the fourth-place finishers receive 600 euros, and the fifth-place finishers receive 300 euros. Setting a new course record earns an additional 4,000 euros in prize money.


Men: Richard Mengich, Kenya, 59.35 (2016)
Women: Fancy Chemutai, Kenya, 1.07.58 (2017)


Alex Kibet, Kenya, 58.55 (2022)
Bravin Kiprop, Kenya, 59.22 (2023)
Edmond Kipngetich, Kenya, 59.25 (2022)
Roland Kirui, Kenya, 59.38 (2021)
Afred Kipchirchir, Kenya, 59.43 (2021)
Cornelius Kangogo, Kenya, 1.01.05 (2017)
David Nilsson, Högby IF/Sweden, 1.01.40 (2020)
Samuel Russom, Hässelby SK/Eritrea, 1.02.28 (2022)
Micah Cheserek, Kenya, 1.02.39 (2023)
Archie Casteel, Spårvägens FK/Sweden, 1.03.11 (2021)
Oscar Nionzima, Burundi, 1.03.10 (2022)
Kristofer Låås, Keep Up RC/Sweden, 1.03.48 (2022)

Aberash Shilima Kebeda, Etiopia, 1.07.28 (2023)
Beatrice Chepkemoi Mutai, Kenya, 1.07.29 (2022)
Cynthia Chemweno, Kenya, 1.08.41 (2023)
Nelly Jeptoo, Kenya, 1.09.49 (2023)
Susan Chembai, Kenya, 1.10.13 (2023)
Sylvia Mboga Medugu, Kenya, 1.10.42 (2017)
Hanna Lindholm, Högby IF/Sweden, 1.11.55 (2022)
Linnéa Sennström, Hässelby SK/Sweden, 1.13.34 (2022)
Linn Bengtsson, Spårvägens FK/Sweden, 1.15.40 (2022)
Alemitu Haroye, Etiopia, debut

Bild: Glenn T Unger


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