Kenyans sweep Bay to Breakers

The Associated Press
Monday May 21, 2001

SAN FRANCISCO – Two runners from Kenya won San Francisco’s most popular race Sunday, the 12K Bay to Breakers. 

James Koskei won the men’s race in 34:19 in his first time running the race. He said the steep Hayes Street hill presented some difficulty. 

“When we reached the hill, we had to struggle,” he said. “We started pushing then.” 

Jane Ngotho won the women’s race in 40:35, beating second-place finisher Jane Omoro, also of Kenya, by one second. 

“The race today was good,” Ngotho said. “The weather was good.” 

The cool, foggy weather at the 8 a.m. beginning didn’t deter some from running the race naked. The race draws serious runners and those out for a good time, many in costumes, such as the game Twister and Batman and Robin. 

The runners made their way down streets littered with tortillas, and as the winners crossed the finish line, some of the 60,000 runners and walkers were just reaching the one-mile mark – an hour after the race began. 

Defending champion Reuben Cheruiyot finished second in the men’s race, three seconds behind Koskei. Third was Moroccan El Arbi Khattabi, who finished in 34:40. The women’s third-place finisher was Gladys Asiba, of Kenya, who finished in 40:51.