Men & Women Kenyan Runners win the Gold Medals at the 39th Annual LA Marathon

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Men & Women Kenyan Runners won the Gold Medals at the 39th Annual Stadium to the Stars Los Angeles Marathon Presented by ASICS this year on St. Patrick’s Day, with Kenya’s 26-year-old Dominic Ngeno winning the men’s race in a very fast 2 hours, 10 minutes and 20 seconds, in his LA Marathon debut.  He won the Gold Medal by breaking away late in the race to win it and was only five seconds ahead of his fellow countryman- Kenya’s 30-year-old Cosmas Kiplimo’s Silver Medal time of 2:10:25. In the below photo: Dominic is 2nd from the left, and Cosmas is on the extreme right:
On this show you can see our TV Producer: Steve Taylor’s interview with both of these men, right after the finish of the race, immediately after the awards ceremony, along with highlights of the finish, and the VIP Breakfast and Lunch with the invited guests, and the top athletes, and international runners, executives, sponsors, and VIPs after the awards ceremony.

I had a great in depth interview with these 2 great Kenyan runners, and talked about their race pace to pull away from the other runners by over 2 minutes, their training for the race and how when it’s closer to this hilly marathon course race- they lower their miles that they run in training to peak for this race, and how they are both heroes in their home country of Kenya. I asked them about a Kenyan running legend, and national hero: Kip Keino – and how he was an inspiration to them both, and how he inspired other young boys to grow up to train for the long-distance running movement and become future great medal winning runners! I was very lucky as a very young boy to be there in person with tickets for the 1972 Olympic Games in Munich, Germany, at Olympic Stadium, for the Track & Field events to witness the main event of Track & Field: the 1500 Meters run- and see Kip Keino win the Silver Medal in that race, and the Gold Medal in the 3000 Meters Steeplechase!

In the 1968 Olympic Games in Mexico City Kip Keino also won the Gold Medal in the 1500 Meters: beating out the USA’S legendary runner Jim Ryun, who was the world record holder at the time in the Mile Run with an unbelievable 3:51.1 time- forcing Jim to take home only the Silver Medal! In addition Kip won the Silver Medal in the 5000 Meters: making him an inspiration to other athletes in the middle- and long-distance races! I was so lucky and honored to see Kip Keino win these Olympic medals in person, and then many years latter meet him in person at the booth for Kenya at the Locations Expo at the Santa Monica Civic Auditorium- a convention for filming Productions on locations in the USA and around the world. Then again many years after that I was able to witness as a press reporter covering the current LA Marathon races going back almost 30 years- when the Kenyan runners would dominate the marathon race just about every year!  Kip Keino’s first Olympics for Kenya were in the 1964 Olympic Games in Tokyo!

More than 2 minutes behind the 2 Kenyan Runners was the 29-year-old: Ethiopia’s Belay Tilahun, who won the Bronze Medal in 2:12:45:

The women’s race started with a 17-minute head start against the men’s elite field, for a very exciting Men VS. Women “Marathon Chase” race-within-a-race competition, that Kenya’s 31-year-old Stacy Ndiwa won, to defend her last year’s title in a personal best time of 2 hours, 25 minutes and 28 seconds and take home the $10,000 Marathon Chase bonus! This makes back-to-back women’s titles, and Gold Medals for Stacy!  She was averaging 5:33 per mile. This is a very fast average- that the average person cannot even do for even 1 mile! She is on the left of the below photo:

The 34-year-old Belarus’ Volha “Olga” Mazuronak who now lives in Irvine – won the Silver Medal to finish second in 2:25:48, just 20 seconds behind Kenya’s Stacy Ndiwa. Volha Siarheyeuna Mazuronak is a Belarusian long-distance runner and former racewalker. She is a three-time national champion and has a marathon best of 2:23:54 and finished fourth at the London Marathon in 2016, and fifth place at the Tokyo Olympics in 2021, and 2016 Olympics in Rio! Ethiopia’s Atsede Bayisha, who is 36 years old, finished third to win the Bronze Medal in 2:25:57, only 9 seconds behind “Olga.” The first women’s runner from the USA was Makena Morley. She is a 27-year-old who trains in Bozeman, Montana, and finished fifth in 2:30:24. In the photos you can see Entertainment & Sports Today and Entertainment Today TV Producer: Steve Taylor in the blue jacket in the middle with the top medal winners. Left to Right: Bronze Medal winner: Ethiopia’s Belay Tilahun, Gold Medal winner: Dominic Ngeno, TV Producer Steve Taylor, Silver Medal winner: Cosmas Kiplimo, and the gold medal winner for the women: Kenya’s Stacy Ndiwa: A record setting number of runners ran in this year’s marathon– of over 25,000 participants who all had an amazing view of many iconic and famous landmarks in downtown L.A., Dodger Stadium, Hollywood, Beverly Hills, and West LA, and finishing on Santa Monica Blvd. & Avenue of the Stars (hence the name “Stadium to the Stars”) in Century City, over the 26.2-mile scenic and hilly marathon course which began before sunrise at Dodger Stadium, with more than 200,000 spectators who were cheering the runners forward, on this iconic 26.2-mile route!

In the below photo is Denver Broncos’ Quarterback Russell Wilson whose sister ran in the Marathon: 

When the Men & Women Kenyan Runners: Dominic Ngeno and Stacy Ndiwa won their Gold Medals and crossed the finish line, they were greeted by a running legend: USA’S Joan Benoit (after winning Olympic Gold she married to become Joan Benoit Samuelson) a legendary marathoner, who is now 66 years old, who had won the gold medal in the very first Olympic marathon for women on August 5th at the 1984 Summer Olympic Games in Los Angeles at the LA Memorial Coliseum.

I was very lucky to be there in 1984 at the LA Memorial Coliseum to see Joan win the Gold Medal for the USA, when I had season tickets to Track & Field, with great 1st. row seats in section 26 of the historic landmark LA Memorial Coliseum! Being there in person to witness her run that final 1/4-mile lap of the 26-mile Olympic marathon, to beat out the best marathon runners in the world, to take home the Olympic Gold Medal for the USA was a moment that I will always remember!  Joan Benoit’s historic run was credited by organizers as the inspiration behind the decision to commemorate the 1984 Olympics with the Los Angeles Marathon, which debuted in 1986. All of our news staff look forward to next year’s historic 40th annual Los Angeles Marathon!

We like to give a very special thanks to: Brian McCourt, the President of The McCourt Foundation, for putting on the LA Marathon for 39 years! His Foundation is on a mission to find cures for neurological diseases while empowering individuals and communities to build a healthier world, and give purpose, advance research, educate, and change lives. The McCourt family has a long association with real estate and construction in the Boston area. In 1977 Brian McCourt left working for his father’s road contracting company and founded The McCourt Company, which specialized in the development of major commercial real estate projects.
Brian’s father is Billionaire Frank McCourt, the CEO of McCourt Global and once-owner of the Los Angeles Dodgers, and the former Dodger owner still owns ½ of the parking lot at Dodger Stadium. He retained the land when he sold the Dodgers, the Stadium and the other 130 acres to Magic Johnson and Guggenheim Baseball.
It is always a pleasure saying hello to Brian throughout Marathon Sunday! He really has a hands on approach to running the LA Marathon, which is why it is such a big success every year, so we look forward to the 40th next year!
Brian was also handing out the medals at the Awards Ceremony that was hosted by KTLA’s Chris Schauble, where the Gold, Silver and Bronze Medals and trophies are given out, along with thanking the main sponsors- ASICS and Hawaiian Airlines. Then immediately afterward behind the awards stage I was able to interview the Kenyan Runners Gold & Silver Medal winners- that you can see on this show. Then shortly after that our news team and most of the people at the awards ceremony went to the VIP Breakfast and Lunch at Eataly L.A, right near the stage are at the finish line:

This year the VIP Breakfast and Lunch that is held immediately after the top runners finish their race, and after the Awards Ceremony, was moved from the Craft Los Angeles Restaurant to Eataly L.A. that is located in the Westfield Century City Shopping Center. The top domestic and international runners, sponsors, executives, and VIPs are invited to this event, as in the below photos: MiaoMiao, who has a cat named MeowMeow, and is a long-distance champion runner from China, and she has run a world leading time of 2:30 in the 26-mile Women’s Marathon. In an amazing coincidence for the last 3 years at the LA Marathon we kept running into each other, and have become friends: 

Eataly” is a takeoff of “Italy” with an amazing variety of Italian and European fine foods, deserts and drinks, with a very massive collection of some of the finest Wines from the best wineries and vineyards from cities all over Italy and Europe! They have the very top best wines in 2 very secure rooms with see through walls of unbreakable glass, which is needed to protect these very expensive bottles of Wines and Champagne. You would need to make an appointment with Eataly to take a tour of their vast wine collection, and to purchase any of their bottles of fine wines.From the 2 wrap-around balconies on the 2nd and 3rd floors where they have tables for you to eat, you have some breathtaking views of Century City, Beverly Hills, and West LA, along with a great view of the LA Marathon finish, with thousands of runners running right past you to the finish line on Santa Monica Blvd. and Ave. of the Stars:  

Eataly is spread over the 2nd and 3rd floors with a range of separate Italian eateries/ restaurants, and actual food markets, where you can shop for authentic Italian and European foods, meats, fish, fresh fruits and vegetables, a very wide variety of cheeses, imported packaged items, and so much more! The three restaurants within Eataly are: La Pizza & La Pasta, Terra, and Capri. It is a vibrant Italian marketplace that features an array of cafes, counters, restaurants, and even a cooking school, where you can eat, shop, and learn! The gourmet chefs at Eataly brought out and served us a very nice variety of some of their finest gourmet dishes, pizzas, salads, and pastas, to make this an experience we will never forget. In addition, they had 4 open bars with top-of-the-line premium drinks, and a very big selection from their gigantic champagne and wine collection – to make this an amazing VIP party- for the LA Marathon!

My rule of thumb is that when the name of a dish needs more than 3 words to describe it- then it has to be good! They brought us out a special pasta dish with a name that was 9 words long, that was needed to describe all the amazing ingredients of pastas, meats, and vegetables that were in it- that lived up to my rule of thumb of more than 3 words in the title of the dish- to make this an amazing and delectable gourmet dish that was as the Italians and Europeans say “magnifico.”  So, for all the invited guests, runners, sponsors, executives, and VIPs- this was a great experience that we will always remember and can recommend to you to visit Eataly L.A. very soon and throughout the year! The food was so good that I didn’t have any more room left latter in the day for a St. Patrick’s Day celebration at the 102-year-old Tam O’Shanter’s Restaurant, for their authentic Irish meals of Corned beef and cabbage simmered with potatoes and carrots for a traditional Irish meal that’s the perfect centerpiece for St. Patrick’s Day! But somehow I managed to eat their world famous and mouth watering Corned beef! There will be more about that on our next show, so stay tuned and thanks for watching Entertainment & Sports Today TV and Entertainment Today on Time Warner/ Spectrum. We hope to see you all soon! To watch other shows go to: EntertainmentandSportsToday.com 

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