Broad Street Run 2012
Broad Street Run 2012, Henry Rutto couldn’t have asked for a better debut on U.S. soil. Esther Erb’s second time competing in Philadelphia proved as successful as Rutto’s first.
Rutto, a 29-year-old Kenyan, and Erb, a 26-year-old North Carolina resident, were the winners in the elite male and female divisions during Sunday’s 33d annual Blue Cross Broad Street Run.
On a day with low humidity and favorable weather for a 10-mile race, the running world clearly was focused on Philadelphia. There were 40,000 registered for the event, which began at Central High School and ended at the Philadelphia Navy Yard.
Rarely in a race of this length does a runner lead from start to finish, but that was the case with Rutto, who was clocked in 47 minutes, 6 seconds. That was 1:37 better than the time of runner-up Birhanu Feyissa Alemu of Maryland.
“All the time I kept looking back, thinking there was someone [there], but there was no one and I was surprised,” Rutto said.
Rutto acknowledged that he wasn’t accustomed to running alone, but he wasn’t complaining, either.
“I am used to pace-making and taking the pace, but I was fine with being alone,” he said.
This was Erb’s second consecutive year competing in the Broad Street Run; last year, she finished fourth.
Having competed last year “helped, especially knowing where the finish line was,” said Erb, who finished in 55.28 – 25 seconds ahead of runner-up Askale Meracki.
The winning times weren’t records for the event, but still impressive for their decisiveness. The men’s record was set in 2007 by Patrick Cheriuyot. His time of 45:14 is the best 10-mile time ever recorded in the United States, according to meet officials.
In 1999, Catherine Ndereba set the women’s record for the Broad Street Run in 53:07.
Both of this year’s winners were energized by the crowd, which lined the streets and cheered the massive wave of runners.
“It was really good; it really helped me to push it on and on – and I really liked the crowd, the music along the way,” Rutto said. “I really liked it.” (Philadelphia Inquirer )