The Rome Marathon has played host to some of the biggest names in the world of marathon racing, but no man has won the race twice, and only one woman has accomplished the feat. Firehiwot Dado of Ethiopia was crowned the women's champion in 2009 with a time of 2:27:08 and in 2010 with a time of 2:25:27 [source: Nazret, Association of Road Racing Statisticians].
Many Italians have won their home country's race, but perhaps none more famous than Stefano Baldini, who set a then-course record of 2:09:33 in 1998. He would go on to win the European Marathon Championship and earn the gold medal in the marathon at the 2004 Olympic Games in Athens [source: Asics].
Ethiopia's Tegla Loroupe who twice held the world record in the marathon, won the Rome Marathon in 2000 in 2:32:04. Loroupe has gone on to make a name for herself outside the running community with her Tegla Loroupe Peace Foundation [source: Association of Road Racing Statisticians, Tegla Loroupe Peace Foundation].
Benjamin Kiptoo Kolum of Kenya, who won the race in 2009, holds the course record of 2:07:17 while Russia's Galina Bogomolova ran a women's best of 2:22:53 in 2008 [source: Association of Road Racing Statisticians].
But it's not just the race winners who have made headlines on the historic course. Great Britain's Richard Whitehead set the marathon world record for a double-amputee by completing the course on prosthetic limbs in two hours and 56 minutes in 2009 [source: Marathon Guide]. In 2001, 88-year-old women's runner Fenya Crown completed the course in less than seven-and-a-half hours. [source: Marathon Guide].
In 2010 Rome Marathon organizers commemorated the 50th anniversary of Abebe Bikila's Olympic win in their city. With victory secured, men's winner Siraj Gena of Ethiopia removed his shoes and ran barefoot for the final quarter-mile in honor of the late Bikila [source: Marathon Guide].