After three years of not hosting the marathon, the 22nd Dubai Marathon took place on Saturday, February 12th.
Two Ethiopians from the same family took the men’s and women’s titles.
Abdisa Tola clocked in the leading time of 2:05:42. A little over 15 minutes later, Tola’s sister-in-law, Dera Dida, ran her personal best and claimed the winning title for the women’s race with a time of 2:21:11.
Tola, 22, led the pack at the 30km mark. He mistakenly went off course for 20m before turning around to find the leading bike. At the 40k mark, he was able to regain the lead and finished nine seconds before Deresa Gelete from Ethiopia (2:05:51) and 15 seconds before Haymanot Alew Engdayehu from Ethiopia (2:05:57).
Dida took the lead at the 40k mark and finished 13 seconds faster than her Ethiopian competitors Ruti Aga (2:21:24) and Siranesh Yirga (2:21:59).
Dida, 26, told Dubai Marathon,
“When I took the lead, I was sure I’d win.”
They’re not the only athletic ones in the family. Abdisa Tola is the brother of Tamirat Tola, who is married to Dida.
Tamirat Tola is a World Champion and 2017 Dubai Marathon winner.
He placed 3rd in the 10k during the 2016 Rio Olympics. He received silver in the World Championship. His personal record for a marathon is 2:04:06.
Dida continued with Dubai Marthon,
“It was a wonderful race and of course, it was very emotional when I realized Abdisa had won as well”