Kenya’s Saitoti and Jeokosgel won Dili International Marathon

Kenya’s Saitoti and Jeokosgel won Dili International Marathon


 DILI, 09 october 2022 (TATOLI) – Kenya’s Seroi Anderson Saitoti, and Chesang Shelia Jepkosgel are the winners of the Dili International Marathon 2022.

Saitoti, the 29-year-old ran the 42 km distance in a remarkable time of 2 hours, 25 minutes, and 48 seconds to become the winner of the Dili International Men’s Marathon Category on saturday morning.

Meanwhile, Jeokosgel, 36, made a remarkable achievement on saturday (08), running 2:56:49 for the fastest-ever woman in Dili International Marathon (DIM) history.

Both Kenyan runners’ won both men and women’s rotating trophies, presented by the President of the Republic, Jose Ramos Horta, on saturday evening.

“I thank all of my brothers and sisters from Kenya, Kupang Atambua, and Singapore,” President Horta appreciated overseas athletes during the trophy’s handover ceremony at the Presidential Place, in Dili.

Saitoti expressed his contentment after becoming the first-place winner of the Dili International Men’s Marathon.

“I am feeling great, but the weather was too hot. So, it was not easy but I tried my best to become the winner of DIM 2022. I will come again and I think it’s better to start a bit earlier next year. Maybe, 5 is better. Timor-Leste is a nice place with a good city,” said Saitoti.

Jeokosgel also expressed her overwhelmed feeling after becoming the winner of the DIM.

“I was not expected to win the race. So, thanked God that I made it. I will try my best to win again next year,” said Jeokosgel.

She called on Timorese female runners to train more and stay focused for the next year’s competition: “Everything is just about training and focus.”

The second-place winner, Margaret Njuguna, said the Dili International Marathon was a very well-organized event: “Even though the weather was so hot, it is a very well-organized event.”

“Timor-Leste is a very good country. It’s a nice place and the people are nice, friendly, and very welcoming. I like the people here. For me, Timor-Leste is one of the best countries I have evet visited so far. If the government of Timor-Leste is going to invite us again, then I will be competing next year,” she said.

Dorcas Tarus, the third-place winner of the DIM said the weather was so hot.

“I lost a lot of water in my body as it’s too hot. It’s very humid as when you reach 15 km, you already feel tired. But we Kenyans are not just not giving up so easily. You just need to keep trying, focus and finish the race,” she said.

Felisberto de Deus, the third-place winner of the competition said that he will train hard to become the winner next year.

“I will train hard to go and compete again at the international level, including SEA Games, and ASIA Games. In addition, I want to win the top position of DIM next time,” said De Deus.

At the same place, Angela Freitas, the only Timorese female runner to win the top position as the fourth-place winner called on the young female Timorese runners to train more to compete in the next completion.

“I would like to encourage my young Timorese fellows to get yourself involved in any king of sports to represent Timor-Leste at the world competition.”

“It’s my debut at the 42 km. So, it’s a good experience for me to prepare better for the next competition,” she said.

Arkadius Yoseph Seran, the coach of the Atambua-Kupang athletes said DIM was a really good event: “We hope next year the government of Timor-Leste will invite more athletes from Atambua-Kupang, especially the border municipalities such as Belo, Malaka, etc. This sports event strengthens the ties between Timor-Leste and West Timor Province (Nusa Tenggara Timur).”

Of all the DIM winners, six are from Kenya, three from Atambua-Kupang and the rest are from Timor-Leste.

More than 1000 runners competed at the DIM 2022, including seven athletes form Kenya, 11 from Indonesia, and one Singaporean.

The DIM 2022 consisted of three categories, namely 10k (6.21 miles), Half marathon: 21.1km (13.1 miles), and Marathon: 26.2 miles / 42.2 kilometers.



Journalist: Filomeno Martins

Editor: Nelia Borges


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