600 volunteers worked hard under the rain to make a great edition of Verona Marathon

VERONA – The rain and the wind did not stop the 600 volunteers of Verona Marathon who persevered in organizing and preparing the whole course of this 18th edition in the night and in the first light of dawn.

Fortune slightly helped the organizers because just before the start the rain stopped. The wind has remained to caress, and also to slow down athletes. Not bad, the 8 thousand participants of Verona Marathon, ZeroWind Cangrande Half Marathon and Bridgestone Last 10k experienced a day of great excitement and fun.

Bad weather conditions that may not have allowed great performances, however, there were confirmations and some news. The first surprise was Luka Kimutai Lagat who, in  his debut on the marathon distance, won the race in 2h18’53 “:” I am happy, it is not a great time and I can do better, but run today on the roads of Verona was really strong “the words of the young Kenyan. In second place was the second newcomer of the day, Jonathan Cheruiyot Kipkoche in 2h24’20″, while applause for the Brescia-born Marco Ferrari (Atl. Paratico), ultra marathoner from the Italian team, who with 2h27’42” gets on the podium as first Italian and third overall.

The confirmation was Nikolina Sustic that for the third time, the second consecutive after 2018, won the Verona Marathon. The Croatian, world champion of ultra marathon 100km, despite the wind and slippery cobblestones arrived in 2h41’05 “, a full minute less than last year. Nobody behind her: second place to the Swedish Anna Jonsson with 2h49’12 “and third to the Hungarian Tunde Szabo in 2h52’30” which thus completes an all-international podium. There is a celebration for Italian colors thanks to the fourth place of the Milanese Claudia Gelsomino (Cardatletica) who, with 2h53’25”, marks the new Italian record F50 category in marathon, a goal declared on the eve before and centered the following morning.

The Kenyan Moses Kemei won the ZeroWind Cangrande Half Marathon and made an encore after the 2018 success. Despite the excellent shape, the rhythm was not that of last year, the day did not allow to run at its best, victory in 1h03’11 “which confirms the international level and the smoothness of the route.

On the other hand, Andrea Meier, won in 1h18’51 the women podium “and for the first time enrolls “her” Switzerland as a winning nation in the gold register.

As planned, Bridgestone Last 10k was also run, a competition won by Giovanni Gualdi (Cus Bergamo) in 31’29 “and by Linda Menigni (Atl. Empoli) in 37’34” for women. The non-competitive race, also very participated despite the bad weather conditions, sponsored by the Verona Hospital with its goal “Il Bambino” was possible thanks to the involvement and active collaboration of five No Profit Organizations: ABEO Onlus Verona, Amici Di Angal Onlus, Italian Red Cross, Prematurely and Save The Children.

Bridgestone Last 10k was the thrilling conclusion of the Everyday Battlers motivational project, inserted within the Olympic campaign Bridgestone Chase your Dream, Never Stop You. All 10 battlers involved, who in the last few months have been followed and motivated by three exceptional coaches, have crossed the finish line: the marathon runner Valeria Straneo, Bridgestone Olympic Ambassador and world silver marathon in 2013, the former national team of athletics Massimo Magnani and the mental coach Luciano Sabbatini. “Seeing all of them reaching the 10km finish line was a strong emotion” – comments Valeria. “In these months together I have learned to know them and learn about each other’s stories. It makes me proud to think back to when we first met in July, and see how far they have come to get here. I respect them very much, for them it is a great satisfaction, for me a great school of life ”.

“Opportunities like these are a goal for Bridgestone, underlines the importance of our mission serving the Company with Superior Quality. Even today we have seen how people’s lives can change “- said Elena Mugione, Brand & Trade Marketing Manager of Bridgestone South Region. “10 people struggled to achieve their dreams, despite the difficulties. Precisely for this reason Bridgestone is not only innovation and cutting-edge in tire development and mobility solutions, but constantly pursues the goal of improving the way people move, live, work and have fun, believing in passion, determination and in courage, all values ​​shared with the sports world ”.

PROJECT ‘Ladies Running – Smile, Be Cool, Be Marathoner’ – Group matches, full of expectations and adrenaline, and the Ladies Running – Smile, Be Cool, Be Marathoner, project conceived and managed entirely by the Verona Marathon Team who wanted to bring as many women as possible to run the marathon and the Half Marathon. The 16 Ladies Running in the spring had been selected among more than 100 women who were candidates, they put in great motivation, the desire to get involved, to overcome their limitations and to demonstrate that despite work commitments and management of a family run for their own wellbeing, carve out time to be with themselves and at the same time train and prepare for a marathon or a half marathon is possible.