CHARLESTON, SC (WCSC) - Elite runners Silas Kipruto and Monicah Nigige, both from Kenya, won the 42nd Cooper River Bridge Run.
Kipruto, 34, has been in the top five finishes numerous times in some of the world’s most competitive races. Kipruto finished with a time of 27:58, securing the $10,000 top prize.
Monicah Nigige, 25, was the top female Elite finisher, winning her third Cooper River Bridge Run in the past four years. Nigige finished with a time of 28:00.
Bridge Run Hall of Fame member Krige Schabort has won the 14th Annual Open Male Division Wheelchair Race.
Schabort, who was born and raised in Cape Town, South Africa, finished the race with an official time of 24:29.
Schabort holds the Bridge Run course record of 23:48 set in 2009. He lost both his legs in a military skirmish in Angola. But soon after the devastating loss, he found his passion in wheelchair racing and transformed tragedy into victory. In his own words, “I got a second chance at life.”
Aerelle Jones won the 14th Annual Open Female Division Wheelchair Race.
Neil Sadler and Kathy Lazarchick won the Dr. Marcus Newberry Award, presented to the top runners who live in the Tri-County area.
An estimated 35,000 runners and walkers will participate in this year’s event, one of the largest 10K races in the world.
The race, which uses the slogan “Get Over It,” benefits 14 charities.
The Cooper River Bridge Run will pump an expected $30 million into our economy this weekend and most of it is from out of town guests.
Some people run the race while others walk the route.
Road closures began as early as midnight Saturday morning. Police began closing off most of the race route to vehicles at 4:30 a.m. The Ravenel Bridge itself will close to traffic at 7 a.m., an hour ahead of the start of the race.
The race route begins at Coleman Boulevard and runners will go from Houston Northcutt Boulevard south across the Ravenel Bridge to Meeting Street from Romney to Woolfe and John to Hasell; Woolfe Street from Meeting to King; King Street from Cannon to Hasell; Wentworth from King to Meeting; Society Street from King to Meeting; George Street from King to Meeting; Hutson Street from King to Meeting.
The Ravenel Bridge reopened shortly before 11 a.m., but some parts of the race route will remain closed until all runners and support equipment is cleared. Most of the streets near Marion Square are expected to open around 2 p.m.
After crossing the finish line, runners will head to Marion Square for the Bridge Run Finish Festival. There will be music from bands, food, drinks and lots of fun.
The winners of each category are below:
Some participants and spectators sported mustaches on the race route this year. The mustaches are in tribute to Julian Smith, the man who served as director of the Cooper River Bridge Run for more than 20 years.
Smith died in March after a battle with glioblastoma, a rare form of brain cancer.
“Julian Smith was a force in our community and known for so many things -- his mustache being one of them," Mustache for Julian campaign spokesperson Emily Trogdon wrote in a release. "And for the first time in 25 years, he won’t be at the Bridge Run start line, so help us let his spirit live on!”
The campaign encouraged those who are taking part in the Bridge Run as well as spectators to either grow out a mustache, stick on a fake mustache or even draw one as a way to thank Smith for his work in the community. They are also encouraged to use the hashtag #MustacheForJulian on social media.
American Shadrack Kipchirchir won his second Cooper River Bridge Run in a row in the 2018 Bridge Run, beating the second finisher by one second. Kipchirchir finished the 41st annual race with a time of 28:25.
"When we hit the bridge, I was tired...but I didn't quit," Kipchirchir said following his win Saturday morning. "I'm not going to give up. I'm going to stay strong...my goal was not to give up."
Kipchirchir, 28, an American distance runner who lives in Colorado Springs and represented the U.S. at the 2016 Olympics in the 10K, is not competing in this year’s race.
Gotytom Bebreslase from Ethiopia was the first woman to cross the finish line and fifth place overall, with a time of 29:07.
Jose Pulido from Clarkesville, Ga. won the male wheelchair division race with a time of 31:04. Michelle Wheeler won the female wheelchair division with a time of 38:42.
Jacob Baranowski is the Newberry Award winner for the first local finish with a time of 33:08. The women's winner is Sarah Ashton, who crossed the finish line at the 36:09 mark.