Spectacular performances in Santa Cruz international marathon
The International Marathon of Santa Cruz Naviera Armas was again a race of contrasts and emotions in this fifth edition, held on the asphalt of the capital of Tenerife.
There was action and emotion, plus a few surprises. But the overall winner was the public who brought colour to the streets and encouraged all the runners during an event which is becoming of an increasingly high level.
Veteran Miguel Ángel Vaquero was again one of the favourites. Based on the island for many years for work reasons, he headed the main group, taking advantage of the explosive exit of the runners of the Half Marathon with those who shared the starting pistol. He was controlling the distance but was closely monitored by Pole Kamil Lesniak, Scot Denis Prikulis and local Huberney Jimenez.
Halfway through the course, Vaquero was in the lead. Jimenez seemed to react and Lesniak and Prikulis maintained their rhythm, trying to shorten a distance that eventually became insurmountable.
Vaquero came home as winner with a time of 2:35:35. Behind him, in a very short period of time, a surprising Lesniak came in, changing the mountains of Poland for the heat of Santa Cruz with very good results. Prikulis, from the Vegan Runners, was third.
“I’ve had to suffer a lot, this circuit gives you nothing and the rivals have been very strong. Thus, the triumph is much more commendable, “confessed Vaquero.
Among the women, the strongest was Anna Wasik. The Polish competitor nearly went wrong during the second part of the race after having dominated with solvency from the beginning. She was close to leaving the race after taking a tremendous fall on the second course in the direction of San Andrés. However, she then recovered an acceptable rate and asserted the enormous advantage that led the front of the race to win the victory. Second was Pilar Mahamud, who made a remarkable race and finished ahead of Kamila Perucka, who completed the podium of the female Marathon.
Wasik acknowledged that she had suffered “very badly” due to moisture and heat conditions and that only “the mental strength and thinking of the people that were waiting for me on the finish line” made it possible for a resurgence that allowed her to finish first.
The intermediate distance was an alley of enormous dimensions, both between men and women. Laura Van den Beucken led from the beginning, without looking back. She finished in a time of 1h 21:34 and a substantial advantage over Lucy Bliddestone and Denise Robson, second and third respectively. Latvian Kitija Valtere finished fourth.
“I was very keen to be able to win here after several years trying it,” said the Bikila team athlete. Van den Beucken explained that running in Santa Cruz “is always hard, but I was doing good results and good results in Las Palmas and in Puerto de la Cruz and I felt very strong. I am more than happy about this result that, for me, is more than important. “
Among the men, the absolute dominator was the Latvian Dymitris Serjongis. Settled in Barcelona in recent times, the Baltic sportsman had shown his quality in tests developed on the peninsular and wanted to try Canary territory. The gap he opened up proved insurmountable. He also broke the record held by the Pole Maciek Miereczko, finishing in 1h 06:54, which will take a lot of beating in future editions. Behind, Hernandez took second place and kept it until he reached the goal ahead of Nour.
Boys and girls also competed in the eight kilometres.