Kipchoge wins in rainy Berlin
BERLIN (GER, Sep 24): Eliud Kipchoge confirmed his marathon supremacy with victory in an exciting but also rainy race, although his 2:03:23 was outside the much talked world record. Guye Adola surprisingly pushed him until the last 5km and clocked the fastest ever debut of 2:03:46 as Wilson Kipsang and Kenenisa Bekele, two of the trio whose presence had made the marathon one of the most anticipated in history, dropped out. Adola and the big three were joined by Wilson Kipruto and two pacemakers in going through halfway in 61:29, slower than the 60:45 asked for beforehand, but on course for the 2:02:57 record belonging to Kipsang, but ultimately rain during the race may have been key. Bekele dropped off the pace at 22km and Kipsang at 30km (both would drop out before 35km), leaving the eventual first two alone, but it was from here and more especially from 35-40km that they started to veer off target. Adola, who has a half-marathon PB of 59:06, pulled a few metres in front at 37km, but Kipchoge had regained touch by 40km. Mosinet Geremew was third with 2:06:09. Kipchoge’s splits: 14:28, 14:37, 14:40, 14:34, 14:33, 14:35, 14:41, 15:04, 6:25. Gladys Cherono, the 2015 winner, regained her title in 2:20:23, crossing the line 18 seconds in front of Ruti Aga, while Valary Aiyabei, who had been part of the three-way race until Cherono pulled away just before 35km, third in 2:20:53. Halfway was reached in 69:40. Anna Hahner was the lead German, clocking 2:28:32 in fifth. Italy’s Catherine Bertone set a world W45 best of 2:28:34. A record number of 43,852 runners from 137 countries entered the 44th edition of the race, which belongs to the Abbott World Marathon Majors Series and is an IAAF Gold Label Road Race.