Eliud Kipchoge, world record holder and king of the world fund, has suffered a heavy defeat in the London marathon, a test in which he aspired to add his third consecutive victory.
The cold and rain took their toll on the Kenyan, who remained in the main group shortly after kilometer 36 after an acceleration of the Ethiopian Shura Kitata, who was the one who finally took the victory in 2:05:41, a mark far from the world record.
Completely sunk, Kipchoge crossed the finish line in eighth position with a mark of 2.06: 49, the second worst in his thirteen official marathons.
¡Victoria en Londres para Kitata!
Kipchumba termina segundo y Lemma es tercero. Kipchoge reventó antes de llegar al kilómetro 40 de la carrera
— Teledeporte (@teledeporte) October 4, 2020
It is the second defeat in the 42.195 kilometers for Kipchoge, who until now had only been defeated in Berlin 2014. Since then he has added ten consecutive first places plus the experimental marathons of Monza and Vienna. In the latter, he managed to drop below 2 hours for the first time (1: 59.40), a mark not validated by the exceptional conditions in which it occurred.
The low of Kenenisa Bekele just two days before the race, due to a calf injury, he left Kipchoge as the great favorite for the final victory, but the Kenyan could not meet expectations and after being threatened throughout the race, unable to leave his pursuers behind, gave up the throne in the final stretch.
The race, which without the pandemic would have been held in April, took place this Sunday in 19 laps around St.James Park.
The rainfall caused the athletes to take extra precautions when taking the curves and this was already noticeable from the middle of the race, with times far removed from the records of other years.
Kipchoge, along with the leading group, reached the middle of the race in a time of 1:02:54, which practically already made it clear that the world record that Kipchoge himself achieved in Berlin in 2018 would not be broken.
As the kilometers passed, the race became more difficult for the Kenyan, who was unable to detach himself from his pursuers, benefiting from a slower race and conditions that were detrimental to him.
Just a few miles from the end Kipchoge he dropped down, behind six runners and anticipating what was to be his second loss in the thirteen marathons he has run, after second place at Berlin 2013.
The one who did not have an easy race was Mo Farah, who retired after 30 kilometers and after fulfilling his role as hare for the rest of the runners. The Briton therefore fell short of the minimum mark for the Olympics, set at 2:11.
After 40 kilometers, the leading group was reduced to only two runners, Kitata and Vincent Kipchumba, winner last year in Vienna and Amsterdam. The race, exciting until the last moment, was decided in the sprint and Kitata took the win, followed by Kipchumba and Sisay Lemma in third position.
In the female event, Brigid Kosgei took the triumph, obtaining his second crown in the British capital. The rain that falls since Friday in London prevented the world record holder from reaching a new record and stopped the clock at 2:18:58, followed by the American Sara Hall, who finished three minutes and three seconds behind the Kenyan.
“We suffered a lot because the weather was not good at all,” explained the winner of the test.