Yimer, Kalayu Win Bloomsday 12K at First 2023-24 PRRO Circuit Stop

May 12, 2023

Spring American classic road race awarded $81,000 prize purse; next PRRO Circuit race, Boilermaker 15K, on July 9 in Utica, NY

SPOKANE, WA /ENDURANCE SPORTSWIRE/ – Under cool, cloudy, near ideal conditions at the 47th Lilac Bloomsday Run 12K on Sunday morning, May 7, Ethiopians Jemal Yimer and Yeshi Kalayu produced fast winning performances, 33 minutes, 58 seconds and 38:49, respectively. At the annual spring 7.46 mile road race, the first stop on the 2023-24 PRRO Circuit, Yimer and Kalayu also earned spots to compete for the $15,000 PRRO Super Bonus at the 27th PRRO Championship hosted by Bloomsday next May.

On “Doomsday Hill” at the 8K mark, Yimer, 26, pulled away from American and former countryman Teshome Mekonen, and the 2018 Bloomsday champion went unchallenged to the finish line. Mekonen followed 20 seconds later, clocking 34:18.

The down-to-the-wire women’s race came down to Kalayu and Cynthia Limo of Kenya with Kalayu, 25, outsprinting the two-time Bloomsday champion (2015-16) and course record holder by two seconds.

“At this year’s Bloomsday, we witnessed top level world class racing, and the women’s race ended with an exciting sprint on the homestretch,” said Don Kardong, PRRO Circuit President and Bloomsday founder. “All in all, a great day for racing!”

Bloomsday 2023 awarded $81,000 in prize money with $20,000 U.S.-only money and $7000 to each Open race champion, and more than 25,000 runners and walkers flooded the streets of Spokane.

The PRRO Circuit showcases world class competition at four of America’s Classic Road Races, the Credit Union Cherry Blossom 10 Mile in Washington, DC, the Lilac Bloomsday Run 12K in Spokane, WA, the Boilermaker 15K in Utica, NY and the Quad-City Times Bix 7 in Davenport, IA. Current Circuit prize money totals more than $340,000 in guaranteed prize money overall, including $135,500 in U.S.-only money. The PRRO Circuit, a nationwide series of premier non-marathon road racing events, is organized and promoted by the Professional Road Running Organization (PRRO), an alliance of race directors.

Because the PRRO Super Bonus went unclaimed at the recent PRRO Championship hosted by the Credit Union Cherry Blossom 10 Mile on April 2, it increased to $15,000 for the 27th PRRO Championship hosted by Bloomsday in May 2024.


Lilac Bloomsday Run 12K, May 7, 2023, Spokane, WA

$81,000 in prize money ($20,000 U.S. prize money)

WINNERS: Jemal Yimer*, Ethiopia, 33:58 and Yeshi Kalayu*, Ethiopia, 38:49

Boilermaker 15K, July 9, 2023, Utica, NY

$65,100 in prize money ($14,500 U.S. prize money)

Quad-City Times Bix 7, July 29, 2023, Davenport, IA

$50,000 in USA Championship prize money

Credit Union Cherry Blossom 10 Mile, April 7, 2024, Washington, DC

$71,000 in prize money ($31,000 USA Championship and RRCA prize money) plus performance bonuses


Lilac Bloomsday Run 12K, May 5, 2024, Spokane, WA

$81,000 in prize money ($20,000 U.S. prize money), tentative

*Qualified to compete for the $15,000 PRRO Super Bonus at the 2024 PRRO Championship.

To-date, PRRO Circuit events have produced 17 world and 18 U.S. road records, awarded more than $8.1 million in prize money and seen more than 2.6 million runners cross their finish lines. In addition, since 1996, the PRRO Championship race has paid out more than $2.1 million including $183,500 in PRRO Championship bonus money.

PRRO Championship and Circuit Year

The PRRO Circuit, launched in 1995, starts and finishes the Circuit Year at the same event that will also host the season-ending PRRO Championship race. The reigning titlists of the PRRO Championship and the event winners on the current Circuit are eligible to compete for the PRRO Super Bonus at the PRRO Championship.

Visit PRRO.org for more information, including its history and past champions, as well as how to join the PRRO Circuit.

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