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Half marathon under investigation after runners ‘allow man to win’

Half marathon under investigation after runners ‘allow man to win’

The Beijing half marathon is now under investigation after footage emerged

Look, we’ve all got that mate who won’t stop banging on about their PB or the big race they’ve got coming up. Or maybe you are that friend.

But for the rest of us, the idea of going on a big, long run for miles and miles is purely just torture.

That’s not to discount you runners though, good for you. It really takes some commitment and you’ve got to be pretty serious about it for those bigger runs. And I’m not just talking about running the length of Africa, even a half marathon takes some real training and dedication.

Then once you’ve completed it, the buzz from crossing the finish line is incredible. You might even pick up pace when it’s in sight, ready to celebrate a major achievement.

However, a half marathon in Beijing, China, is now under investigation after runners were accused of ‘allowing a man to win’.

It's being investigated. (X)
It's being investigated. (X)

Yep, it’s claimed that three participates of the 13-mile run yesterday (14 April) slowed down as they approached the end.

The race was won by member of China’s marathon team and national marathon record holder, He Jie. The 25-year-old won in Beijing in a time of 1:03:44, but three others were just one second behind.

Footage from the race seems to show Dejene Hailu Bikilia from Ethiopia with Robert Keter and Willy Mnangat from Kenya slow down and let the winner run ahead.

All four of them had been running together for pretty much the whole half marathon.

Mnangat later told South China Morning Post he let He Jie win ‘because he is my friend’ and added he wasn’t given a financial reward for doing so.

He Jie told state media: “I have never participated in a half marathon before, so this time I wanted to set a personal best.”

He Jie is a marathon runner. (Chen Wen/China News Service/VCG via Getty Images)
He Jie is a marathon runner. (Chen Wen/China News Service/VCG via Getty Images)

Beijing Sports Competition Management and International Exchange Centre organised the event and has now said it is investigating the incident.

Users on social media said it’s ‘embarrassing’ and slammed it as ‘a fake race’.

Some also called it ‘horribly shameful’ and said they ‘didn’t even try to make it seem real’.

World Athletics told Sky News in a statement: “We are aware of the footage circulating online from the Beijing Half Marathon this weekend and understand an investigation is currently being conducted by the relevant local authorities.

"The integrity of our sport is the highest priority at World Athletics, while this investigation is ongoing we are unable to provide further comment."

Featured Image Credit: X

Topics: China, World News, Sport