Kipchoge and Sumgong ensure a Kenyan double in the Marathon

0
Have your say

Eliud Kipchoge ran the second fastest time in history to retain his Virgin London Marathon crown in course record time.

The 31-year-old Kenyan left the field trailing as he powered home in two hours three minutes and four seconds.

Kipchoge celebrated by raising his finger as he made the final turn, but appeared to realise as he approached the line just how close he had come to Dennis Kimetto’s world record, his compatriot going just seven seconds quicker in Berlin two years ago.

Kipchoge brought his hand to his forehead as he saw his time, but was soon smiling again as he celebrated a stunning run.

Fellow Kenyan Stanley Biwott was second with a personal best of 2hrs 3mins 51secs, while Ethiopia’s Kenenisa Bekele came in third. Kipchoge’s compatriot Jemima Sumgong ensured a Kenyan double by winning the women’s race, despite banging her head in a heavy fall.

Sumgong took a tumble at around 22 miles, apparently tangling feet with Aselefech Mergia in an incident that also saw pre-race favourite Mary Keitany fall and never fully recover.

Sumgong cracked her head against the road, but ignored her clear discomfort to rejoin the leading pack and eventually pass them.

She finished in 2:22:58 as defending champion Tigist Tufa failed to haul her in over the final 600m.

Leeds City’s Derek Hawkins was third British runner in the men’s elite race finishing 14th overall in a personal best time of 2:12:57. This beats the Olympic qualifying mark of 2:14 and gives Hawkins a chance of Olympic selection. Callum Hawkins, Derek’s younger brother, ran a perfect race, eighth in a personal best of 2:10:52 whilst Tsegai, an Eritrean who has a British qualification, also booked his place to the Olympics, hanging on to a narrow lead over a fast finishing Derek Hawkins.

There was disappointment for Leeds City’s Susan Partridge. One of five British athletes with a genuine chance of Olympic selection, she dropped out around the 35 kilometre mark.

She was looking good up to the halfway mark reached in 1:15:43 but began to lose ground after that.