Tariku Bekele Triumphs In São Paulo

Kenenisa Bekele's younger brother defeats the Kenyans in Brazil.

Kenenisa Bekele’s younger brother defeated the Kenyans in Brazil.

Wearing bib #225, Tariku Bekele went on to win Brazil's largest New Year's Eve race. Photo: IAAF

New Year’s Eve in Brazil was especially enjoyable for Ethiopia’s Tariku Bekele. The younger brother of Kenenisa, owner of multiple world records, got it done down south when he defeated a star-studded field at the Corrida Internacional de São Silvestre.

Bekele covered the 15K distance in 43:35. He was able to edge out Mark Korir (second in 43:58) as well as marathon aces Matthew Kisorio (third in 44:12) and Martin Lel (fourth in 44:28).

“I was able to put my plan in place,” Bekele said afterwards. “I wanted to push hard after the sixth kilometer, and the rain didn’t bother me at all. My experience as a track athlete gave me the edge over people who come from the marathon, such as Kisorio and Lel. All the training I’m putting in for the World Indoor Championships along with Kenenisa also helped me. I’m hoping this victory will be a good motivation for both of us.”

The hometown favorite, Marilson dos Santos of Brazil, a two-time winner of the ING New York City Marathon, could only manage eighth place.

For More: IAAF