After Moses Mosop's brilliant run over the streets of Chicago today, we all know that he is a most formidable marathoner. Just how formidable was seen today, as the victory, won in such grand style was done by a man who was only capable of jogging 40 minutes a day in early August and did not start his real training until September 6, just a mere five weeks ago! Here is how he garnered his victory over the 37,400 runners in the Windy City today!
The men's race was actually, pretty relaxed for the early running. 14:54 for 5k, 29:41 for 10k, with Moses Mosop, Evans Cheruiyot, Marlison Dos Santos, Bekana Deba, Wesley Korir and the pace making team.
The weather was low humidity, but warm, with the start at 65 degrees. The pack was together at 15k in 44:39, with the pack dropping from twelve to ten.
Moses and Wesley Korir were always there, with Ryan Hall staying at the back of the lead pack, getting his water and confusing his fans with his conservative running tactics. " I did not feel in a rhythm today" noted Ryan Hall after the race.
The pack, down to ten at the 15k, hit in 44:39. Moses Mosop, Evans Cheriuyot, Dos Santos, Hall, Daba, Korir and Kipyego hit the 20k in 59:35. The half way was hit in 1:02:54, even with the warm conditions, pretty darn impressive (the pacemakers were asked to run 1:02:40).
The race continued along, as the 25 kilometer was hit in 1:14:14 as Dos Santos went off the back and Ryan Hall slowly began to go off the back, first ten meters, then twenty, then fifty meters.
Wesley Korir went to the front just about 28k and began to run hard, putting a mile in 4:36, and breaking up the race. The pack following him was down to Mosop, Kipyego, Daba, Cheruiyot and Hall off the back.
Korir, the two time winner of the Honda LA Marathon began to push, hitting the 30k in 1:28:46. Moses Mosop did not let Korir lead long, as he charged up behind Korir and then, ran 14:33 for the 5k between 30 and 35k, hitting the 35k in 1:28:46, and putting 42 seconds between Wesley Korir and Bernard Kipyego, who were involved in a epic struggle to take control of second place.
Wesley Korir is a colorful character, and our sports needs more runners such as Wesley. A graduate of the University of Louisville, Wesley has applied for U.S. citizenship, although we can not really determine how far he is in the process. Korir ran gutsy today, knowing that when he surged, Moses would surge back. "Moses is a wild lion," noted Wesley.
Moses Mosop, on less than six weeks of training looked superb. Between 35 and 40k, Moses began to slow down, running 15:17 for that 5k section. But the dye was cast.
Moses Mosop continued to the finish, over the final 2.2 k, obviously in fatigue. He finished in the bright sun in 2:05:37, breaking the course record and giving him a victory in only his second marathon.
" Moses was so tired, he ran the last two kilometers slower than Liliya Shobukhova. He is about 80 percent. When Moses gets fit, he will run 2:03 or 2:02." noted his coach, Renato Canova.
After his world records this summer, many were impressed. After Moses Mosop run in Chicago today, Moses Mosop looks like the man to challenge Patrick Makau's current world record!
A few more geek notes on Moses Mosop's performance: Mosop's time is a U.S. all-comers record (certified). Mosop has not run the two fastest times in a single year, with a total time of 4:08:52 (2:03:06 and 2:05:37), compared to Gebrselassie's 4:08:52 in 2008 (2:04:53 and 2:03:59).
Ryan Hall, who looked fully recovered after the race at the press conference, noted, " I always learn from races. I will take ten days off, then begin my build up for Houston. Unlike some others, I think it is important to be on the podium, god-willing. I also want to be the top American at the marathon, which I believe is a tough task, contrary to what others might say. I guess, because I am an athlete, I see how hard it is to get to the top and how tough American distance runners really are."
Stay tuned for Houston.
(Special thanks to Robyn Monsky and her team at the Bank of America Chicago Marathon. Thanks to Jeremy Borling for his help over the weekend!)
2011 Bank of America Chicago Marathon:
1. Moses Mosop, Kenya, 2:05:37, course record
2. Wesley Korir, Kenya, 2:06:15
3. Bernard Kipyego, Kenya, 2:06.29
4. Bekana Deba, Ethiopia, 2:07:59
5. Ryan Hall, USA, 2:08:04
6. Evans Cheruiyot, Kenya, 2:10.29
7. Kouji Gokaya, Japan, 2:12:15
8. Hironori Arai, Japan, 2:13:17
9. Takashi Horiguchi, Japan, 2:14:48
10. Masaki Shimoju, Japan, 2:17:49