Fast CPH Half Claims Top Spot in World Rankings

Blazingly fast times were set on the flat course through the heart of Copenhagen at Sunday’s Copenhagen Half Marathon. This has secured the CPH Half a place in top of the world rankings.

Only in its second year, the Copenhagen Half Marathon has pulled ahead to take a top spot among the world’s half marathons rankings.

This was obvious already during the race, when Kenyan James Mwangi Wangari, having announced that he would be targeting the world record, passed 10K in 27:15 – the fastest 10K in the world since 2011 (source: – click HERE for a top ten of the worlds fastest 10K).

And now statistics confirm the same story:

No less than five of the 10 fastest half marathon times in the world this year was clocked in Copenhagen.

Cutting off seven seconds of the CPH Half course record with his 59:07 win, James Mwangi Wangiri of
Kenya takes a second place among the world’s fastest half marathon times in 2016, with his four closest competitors all making it into the top 10.

A total of seven men made it under the 60 minutes-dash, which is precedented only once at the 2007 World Half Marathon Championships in Udine.

CPH Half finish times in top of 2016 world rankings
(Please note that the CPH Half winner is listed as James Ndirangu Mwangi)

1. 58:44 Solomon Kirwa Yego KEN, Ostia Lido, 13 MAR 2016
2. 59:07 James Ndirangu Mwangi KEN, Copenhagen, 18 SEP 2016
3. 59:10 Geoffrey Kipsang Kamworor KEN, Cardiff, 26 MAR 2016
4. 59:15 Barselius Kipyego KEN, Ústí nad Labem, 17 SEP 2016
5. 59:18 Leonard Kipkoech Langat KEN, Ostia Lido, 13 MAR 2016
6. 59:20 Daniel Kinyua Wanjiru KEN, Praha, 02 APR 2016
7. 59:28 Stephen Kosgei Kibet KEN, Copenhagen, 18 SEP 2016
8. 59:29 Albert Kipkosgei Kangogo KEN, Copenhagen, 18 SEP 2016
9. 59:31 Gilbert Masai KEN, Copenhagen, 18 SEP 2016
10. 59:32 Bedan Karoki Muchiri KEN, Copenhagen, 18 SEP 2016

Source:, 22 September, 2016.

”There are obviously many ways to measure the top level, but this ranking pretty much speaks for itself. Now we will have to await Valencia in October and, after that, New Delhi, to see if they can do better,” says Jakob Larsen, CEO of the Danish Athletic Federation, who organises the CPH Half together with Sparta Athletics and Running.

An IAAF Silver Label race, the CPH Half has achieved the second highest international distinction possible, now striving for the most prestigious award, the IAAF Gold Label, which among other things requires a very strong elite field.

”From my point of view we are very close to reaching our goal. We only need to strengthen the women’s elite field for next year,” says Jakob Larsen.

Impressive women’s field and tons of personal bests
The women’s elite field also performed at an impressive level. Thus the four women to first cross the finish line all came in under the course record of 1:08:29, claiming place 18, 20 and 22 on the world’s leading half marathon times in 2016.

No less than 62 % of the pro-athlete field pulled a PB at the new world-class race through the streets of Copenhagen and Frederiksberg.

Even the splits were tremendously fast. Thus the entire top 10 world leading 10K times in 2016 has the Copenhagen venue written all over (source:

An international classic
Now proven fast, Dorte Vibjerg, director of co-organiser Sparta Athletics and Running, hopes that the CPH Half will be able to establish itself firmly on the international stage:

”We have a clear expectation that this year’s fast times will boost international awareness of the CPH Half and attract even more participants – both elite and recreational runners. Our vision is to become a major international classic. What Berlin is to marathon, we want the CPH Half to be to the half marathon,” says Dorte Vibjerg.

Sport Event Denmark, who partners the event, is ready to take the next step:

”Our objective is to attract many more international participants for the CPH Half. A fast course, ideal for breaking records, is a strong argument to that end. Our task now is to make sure that everyone knows about this. Together with the organisers, we will put an even greater effort into enhancing our presence at race expoes around the world,” says Lars Lundov, CEO at Sport Event Denmark.

Facts on the Copenhagen Half Marathon
·       A designated IAAF Silver Label road race
·       22,000 participants from 104 different countries
·       3,600 international participants
·       Organised by Sparta Athletics and Running and the Danish Athletics Federation since 2015
·       Powered by: Nordea-fonden
·       Collaberators: Bevæg dig for livet – Løb, Sport Event Denmark, City of Copenhagen, City of Frederiksberg, and Wonderful Copenhagen.
·       Next race edition is held Sunday 17 September, 2017
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