The 2024 Dubai Marathon has given the 2024 marathon season a great start. Two debut marathoners from Ethiopia made a huge impression earlier today, first with a win on the men’s side by 19-year-old junior Addisu Gobena taking the win in his debut in 2:05.01. On the women’s side, Tigist Ketema won the women’s elite title in CR of 2:16.07 a course record by 61 seconds. 

What follows is the official press release from Pace Events, the management, and the owners of the Dubai Marathon.



DUBAI (UAE): There was a double celebration on Ethiopian Christmas Day as debut runners Addisu Gobena and Tigist Ketema wrapped up the elite titles in superb style at the 23rd Dubai Marathon.

Staged under the auspices of the Dubai Sports Council, Ketema clocked an unofficial women’s world record debut, finishing in a fantastic 2:16:07.
Running on Dubai’s renowned super flat course that mainly stretches on Jumeirah Beach Road, the 25-year-old Ethiopian marked her first-ever marathon by becoming the eighth fastest woman in marathon history. She also smashed the Dubai course record, improving the mark by 61 seconds.

Addisu Gobena passes the Burj Al Arab as he heads for the tape at the Dubai Marathon

For Ketema, it was a surprise result as she had initial reservations about shifting her focus to the classic 42.195km distance. “I was quite afraid of the distance before I ran my first marathon, but now, I wondered why,” she smiled after receiving the trophy from His Highness Sheikh Mansoor bin Mohammed Al Maktoum, Chairman of the Dubai Sports Council.

In benign weather conditions, fellow Ethiopians Ruti Aga and defending champion Dera Dida took second and third places with 2:18:09 and 2:19:29 respectively. Fourth-placed German Melat Kejeta ran 2:21:47 and qualified for the Olympic Games.

Teenager Addisu Gobena also stormed to victory, with the 19-year-old Ethiopian junior clocking 2:05:01 ahead of fellow Ethiopians Lemi Dumecha and Dejene Megersa, another debutant, in second and third spots with 2:05:20 and 2:05:42. Fifth-placed Samuel Fitwi, representing Germany, smashed his personal best and qualified for the Paris Olympic Games with 2:06:27.

Ethiopia’s Addisu Gobena Aga looks shocked to win the Dubai Marathon men’s elite title.

Last year, brother and sister-in-law Abdisa Tola and Dera Dida took the Dubai Marathon titles, while this year, it was almost another family affair as Addisu Gobena took the men’s crown while his aunt – Ruti Aga – finished runner-up in the women’s race.

Originally a mediocre javelin thrower, Gobena turned to running on the advice of his aunt just two years ago. And after training with her, he discovered he also had a talent for distance running, and today is the Dubai Marathon champion – “I think I made the right decision,” he said.

HH Sheikh Mansoor bin Mohammed Al Maktoum with Dubai Marathon winner Addisu Gobena

In the wheelchair division, it was a Chinese clean sweep, with Jin Hua and Tian Yajuan taking the men’s and women’s titles in 1:27:08 and 1:39:39, respectively. In all, around 12,000 runners took to the flat streets with races across the marathon, 10km and 4km distances.

The 2024 Dubai Marathon was supported by the Dubai Sports Council, adidas, Dubai Duty-Free, EXEED by Al Ghurair, the Channel 4 Radio Network, ITP Media Group, Bisleri Water, Biofreeze, Dubai RTA, Dubai Police, Al Ameen Service, Dubai Municipality and SIRO One Za’abeel, the first fully integrated Fitness + Recovery hotel in Dubai.

To see the top Ten results from the 2024 Dubai Marathon, please click here: