Defending Champions Kiprotich And Tola Return To Vienna

Austria's largest marathon takes place on April 15.

Austria’s largest marathon takes place on April 15.

All the press may be on the signing of superstars Paula Radcliffe and Haile Gebrselassie to take part in the Vienna Half Marathon, but what may be getting overlooked is the race’s fiercely competitive marathon event.

Former champions John Kiprotich of Kenya and Fate Tola of Ethiopia will return to the race next month. An additional four previous winners will be taking part as well.

The fastest male runner in the field thus far is Gilbert Kirwa who boasts a 2:06:14 marathon PR. He was originally slated to run against Haile Gebrselassie at the Tokyo Marathon this February, but wasn’t deemed fit enough.

In the women’s race, Tola appears to be the clear favorite. Last year, the Ethiopian upset the field to win over Portugal’s Ana Dulce Felix and Peninah Arusei of Kenya.

She currently owns a 2:26:21 personal best and currently trains with German marathon star Irina Mikitenko in Albuquerque, USA.

Tola will be competing against  Luminita Talpos of Romania who won the race in 2007 and 2008.

For More: IAAF