Tuesday, February 20, 2018

Nero takes Half-Marathon


WINNING SMILE: Tonya Nero, left, receives her winner's cheque from Trinidad and Tobago International Marathon (TTIM) committee chairperson Diane Henderson, at the Queen's Park Savannah in Port of Spain, yesterday, after winning the women's half-marathon in one hour, 19 minutes and six seconds.

(BI) Feedloader User

On a day dominated by Africans, Tonya Nero stood as the lone local winner yesterday, taking the Trinidad and Tobago International Half-Marathon women's title.

Nero was impressive with a one hour, 19 minutes and six seconds clocking under a humid Port of Spain sky, finishing the half-marathon at the Queen's Park Savannah, opposite Whitehall.

More impressive was the fact that, of the 200-plus runners that started the event at eTech Park, Nero strode in fifth behind the eventual winner, Lionel Dandrade.

Dandrade clocked 1:12:47, beating fellow Guyanese Kelvin Johnson (1:14:35) into second. Curtis Cox, the 2005 marathon champion, was third in 1:18:14.

Overall, Roland Bartholomew was fourth, with Nero fifth and her brother, Sandino Nero a few seconds adrift in sixth.

Nero's (T) closest female competitor, Elizabeth Agostini, was second among the women in 1:44:35, while Juliet John-Sambrano (1:46:58) was third.

Nero (T), though, was not satisfied with her clocking.

"The time didn't go as good as I wanted it to but I put out my best effort and I feel good about it. I know I gave it my best," she told the Express, yesterday.

"The last couple of times I ran half marathon was in (conditions) close to winter, so it was humid today a bit, and even the road felt a bit different. Trinidad is just a different place (to the colder climates)."

The T&T distance runner explained that she used the event as training ahead of a marathon in Rotterdam (Netherlands) in three weeks time, where she will attempt to qualify for the 2012 London Olympic Games.

"The half-marathon was just a training session to see where I'm at right now, and how fit I am. The full marathon would have been too much."

Nero (T) hopes her good form will help encourage other T&T distance runners to work hard towards their goals, and said she is happy with every opportunity to represent T&T.

She also has a bit of fine-tuning to do before her next assignment, according to Nero.

"(After my run) today I'm close to it," the runner stated, "but I feel like I have to do more work and I hope the conditions are better in Rotterdam. I put in a good effort, but I feel like I need to do a little more."