Joseph Kipsang didn't care for the cool weather at the Stroh's Run For Liberty II in downtown Washington yesterday, but he won decisively.
The Kenyan native now living in Silver Spring built a 100-meter margin by midrace and won the eight-kilometer (4.96-mile) run to benefit the restoration of the Statue of Liberty. The time for Kipsang, 24, was 24 minutes 56 seconds.
Although Kipsang led from the start and won by 43 seconds, women's winner Doriane Lambelet, 24, of Washington used her 800-meter speed at the end to outsprint runner-up Amy Simon of Washington by six seconds in 28:47.
James Cooper of Wheaton finished second in 25:39. Cooper held second place until he was passed in the final stretch by Patrick McCoy, then came back and caught McCoy within the last block.
"It was very cold," said Kipsang, a Kenyan Embassy employe who recently relocated from Colorado. "It definitely affected me . . . I tried to pick up the pace but couldn't move."
His first mile from Western Plaza was a relatively slow 4:50, but earned Kipsang a 50-meter margin on Cooper in a field of about 2,600. He increased his lead to 75 yards with a 4:44 second mile, then kept looking back up Pennsylvania Avenue and extending his lead to more than 100 meters.
Among the women, Lambelet came on strong in the second half. The first-year Georgetown University Law student was a 2:01 half-miler for the Santa Monica (Calif.) Track Club.
Kip and Charles Cheruiyot, 20-year-old freshmen at Mount St. Mary's College, ran one-two in the Market Street Mile in Frederick, Md., in a record 3:58.8 and 4:00.3.