About 5,000 runners competed in the 42-kilometre marathon which started on the Asian side of Istanbul’s July 15 Martyrs’ Bridge and finished in the historic Sultanahmet Square on the city’s European side.

A record number of runners competed in the world's only intercontinental marathon. This year’s theme for the Vodafone 40th Istanbul Marathon is:
A record number of runners competed in the world's only intercontinental marathon. This year’s theme for the Vodafone 40th Istanbul Marathon is: "Run Istanbul for a healthy future." (AA)

Kenyan runners Felix Kimutai and Ruth Chepngetich on Sunday both finished in first place in the men's and women's races at the 40th intercontinental Istanbul Marathon.

Chepngetich is celebrating her second consecutive victory in he women's category.

The Vodafone 40th Istanbul Marathon started on the Asian side of Istanbul’s July 15 Martyrs’ Bridge, formerly known as the Bosphorus Bridge, and ended in the historic Sultanahmet Square on the city’s European side.

Around 30,000 professional runners, from more than 100 countries, took part in the marathon.

In addition to that, an estimated 100,000 people ran in the 8-kilometre transcontinental Istanbul Marathon Fun Run. 

The event featured a 42-kilometre marathon, and three other races on courses of 15 kilometres, 10 kilometres, and 8 kilometres. It also included a race for wheelchair-bound participants. 

About 5,000 runners - more than half of them foreigners - competed in the 42-kilometre marathon. 

The top five countries to send runners were Russia, Germany, Ukraine, Britain, and France.

Fifty-five elite runners from Turkey, Kenya, Ethiopia, Azerbaijan, France, Bahrain and Morocco participated in the marathon.

Compared to recent years, the number of foreign runners in the marathon has doubled. 

The Istanbul Marathon is among 17 marathons in Europe and 38 marathons in the world.

Vodafone is the main sponsor of the race organised by the Istanbul Metropolitan Municipality’s Spor Istanbul subsidiary. 

Last year, French runner Abraham Kiprotich won the men's category and Kenya's Ruth Chepngetich the women's category. 

Source: AA