Eliud Kipchoge breaks two-hour marathon mark by 20 seconds

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Eliud Kipchoge has become the first athlete to run a marathon in under two hours, beating the mark by 20 seconds.

 

The Kenyan, 34, covered the 26.2 miles (42.2km) in 01 hour 59 minutes 40 seconds in the Ineos 1:59 Challenge in Vienna, Austria on Saturday.

 

It will not be recognised as the official marathon world record because it was not in open competition.

 

“This shows no-one is limited,” said Kipchoge.

 

“Now I’ve done it, I am expecting more people to do it after me.”

 

The Olympic champion – who holds the official marathon world record of 2:01:39, set in Berlin, Germany in 2018 – missed out by 25 seconds in a previous attempt at the Italian Grand Prix circuit at Monza in 2017.

 

Making history, Kipchoge was roared on by a large crowd in the Austrian capital. The four-time London Marathon winner embraced his wife, Grace, and grabbed a Kenyan flag.

 

Kipchoge, who compared the feat to being the first man on the moon, said he had made history just as Britain’s Sir Roger Bannister did in running the first sub four-minute mile in 1954.

 

“I’m feeling good. After Roger Bannister made history, it took me another 65 years. I’ve tried and I’ve done it,” said the Kenyan.

 

To break the mark, he had to run 100m in 17.08 seconds 422 times in a row at a speed of 21.1kph (13.1 mph).

 

He was 10 seconds ahead of schedule at the halfway mark, before appearing to slow with a few 2.52 kilometres, only to regain the pace in the final stages.

 

The attempt was funded by petrochemicals company Ineos – owned by Britain’s richest man, Sir Jim Ratcliffe – which also sponsors the cycling team of the same name.

 

The location was selected because of the favourable climate, excellent air quality and almost completely flat terrain, with only 2.4 metres of incline across the route.

 

Nike also provided Kipchoge with a new model of the shoe that has been worn by athletes running the five fastest marathons in history.

 

The Ineos team selected the start time of 07:15 BST after assessing weather conditions in Vienna this week.

 

Kipchoge’s coach, Patrick Sang, said “everything went perfectly right” in this attempt.

 

“He has inspired all of us and shown that we can stretch the limits in our life,” he added.

 

“For the sport, it is a challenge to other young athletes that they can perform better than they think. For humanity, it shows you can move to another level.”

 

“History has been made. It’s unbelievable.”

 

Source: https://www.bbc.com/sport/athletics/50025543?fbclid=IwAR1f5fI4fYwVJq2jBHx5nD_Q5iOaj-mi7IZMNZM-_vx20ljiUpxBEuXqQHw

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