- The Washington Times - Monday, April 27, 2009

Just a couple of steps off the starting line, it was apparent that two Kenyans at Sunday’s George Washington Parkway Classic were going to run away with the 10-mile race from Mount Vernon to Old Town Alexandria.

Patrick Cheruiyot and James Boitt bolted through the first mile in 4 minutes, 20 seconds - albeit a downhill mile - and went 1-2 to the finish line in 48:42 and 49:01. Cheruiyot earned $500 and Boitt $250 in a prize structure skewed to promote American runners.

When Amanda Trotter of Arlington crossed the finish line in 56:43, she banked $500 for winning the women’s event, $1,000 for being the top American woman and $200 for running sub-58:00. To do so, she had to beat a tough competitor, Samia Akbar of Herndon.

“I was surprised to beat her,” Trotter said. “She’s one of my role models, but I know she’s been training really hard and I am pretty rested.”

Akbar finished second among women in 57:28, earning $250 for the place, $750 for being the second American woman and the $200 time bonus. Trotter, 24, said she had exams in the past week as a first-year medical student, but she did not look rusty. After four miles, she passed Akbar; passing five miles in 28:13, Trotter led by 20 seconds.

The Kenyans held that same margin on the rest of the men - but that was just a mile into the race. By the midpoint, Americans Christopher Raabe, Andrew Dumm and Nicholas Stanko were fighting for the $1,000 American men’s prize - some 19 seconds behind Boitt.

“We tried to keep [Cheruiyot and Boitt] in sight the whole way and catch them by the end,” said Raabe, a 30-year-old D.C. resident. “But it didn’t work out that way.”

Raabe split from Dumm, last year’s Marine Corps Marathon champ, and Stanko just before the 9-mile marker and nearly caught Boitt. Raabe ran 49:08, and Dumm and Stanko both followed at 49:14, all earning a $200 bonus for sub-49:30 times.

Pike’s Peek - At the Pike’s Peek 10K on Sunday in Rockville, Ethiopians dominated, notching the first seven positions in the men’s race and the top two spots for the women.

Tesfaye Bekele, training in Bronx, N.Y., raced from the Shady Grove Metro station to White Flint Mall in 28:30, the second-fastest time to Dan Browne’s 28:27 in 1999. Bronx-based Meskerem Legesse (32:58) was 14 seconds off the women’s course record set in 1998 by two-time Olympian Jen Rhines.

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