NDN HALF MARATHON: New Mexico's Sawe wins men's race; Deba takes women's

2010 Naples Daily News Marathon

The streets of downtown Naples were packed ...

— It was a year of redemption at the 22nd annual Naples Daily News Half Marathon.

With last year’s winners absent, both the men’s and women’s races Sunday were won by runners who barely missed out on the 2009 titles.

After finishing third a year ago, Simon Sawe won the men’s race in 1 hour, 4 minutes and 31.1 seconds. Worku Beyi, who was neck-and-neck with Sawe with a tenth of a mile to go, finished runner-up for the second year in a row.

Buzunesh Deba, who finished one second behind the winner last year, coasted to victory in the women’s race. She won in 1:12.49.6, outlasting Everlyne Lagat (1:14.54.7).

It was a second straight disappointment for Beyi. The Ethiopian led at times during the race, but couldn’t out-sprint Sawe down the stretch. Last year Beyi led by as many as two minutes before losing by 1.7 seconds, one of the closest finishes in the event’s history.

“I wasn’t sure,” Sawe said when asked if he knew he could out-race Beyi at the end, “but I figured that I don’t have anything to lose.”

Sawe, 36, a native Kenyan who is a U.S. citizen and trains in Sante Fe, N.M., was running his second Naples Daily News Half Marathon.

Deba, 22, led most the second half of the race despite a tight left hamstring. From Ethiopia but now living in New York, Deba set a personal best with her 1:12.49.6 finish. Not bad for her first race of the year.

“It was good,” she said. “(Lagat) was close, but I stayed ahead.”

Posted earlier:

Simon Sawe of Santa Fe, N.M., won the men's race, and Buzunesh Deba of New York took the women's in the 22nd annual Naples Daily News Half Marathon on Sunday morning.

Sawe finished in 1 hour, 4 minutes, 31 seconds. Worku Beyi of New York was second. Deba won in 1:12.49. Everlyne Lagat of Tucson, Ariz., was second.

Gulf Coast Runners and Hope for Haiti collected cash donations Sunday at Cambier Park, starting at 8 a.m. Organizers have asked for donations in cash or check. No supplies or clothing donations should be brought to the Cambier location.

RESULTS: Naples Daily News Half Marathon 2010 results

MEN'S RACE: Simon Sawe's memory results in memorable men's finish

WOMEN'S RACE: Last year's runner-up finishes first in women's race

NOTEBOOK: Humid conditions don't compare to Disney's cold

YOUR PHOTOS: Click here to add your own Half Marathon photos

OUR SPECIAL SECTION: Click here for new and older stories, photo galleries and more

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