The London Marathon: What to Expect in the Race as Kipchoge and Bekele Face Off

The London marathon is billed as as the true ultimate test of a runner’s mettle and in order to triumph, one needs more than just great physical condition.

On October 4, the world will be treated to a spectacle and perhaps a thrilling world marathon final that promises to be a fascinating race.

Of the 45 elite men chosen to run, Kenya’s Eliud Kipchoge, who has won 12 of the 13 marathons he has entered, will be looking to make history and possibly break his own record of (2.01.39) set in 2018. Though, this will not be an easy feat as he has his work cut out for him with the likes of his arch rival Kenenisa Bekele, who came two seconds shy of beating Kipchoge’s record in 2019.

Kipchoge’s personal best record of 1:59:40 in which he set in Vienna, did not stand as an official world record albeit to the circumstances. This time round, Kipchoge and Bekele will put their enviable record breaking times on the line.

The other challengers to Kipchoge’s throne will be the likes of Kenya’s Marius Kipserem, Vincent Kipchumba, Gideon Kipketer as well as Mo Farah from Britain and Ethiopia’s Mosinet Geremew and his fellow country man, Mule Wasihun.

It has been seen that great physical form is not the only ingredient needed to triumph, strong mental attitude and a high threshold for pain are also key. The will to win and determination is what sets apart the wimps from the ultimate legends.

While Kipchoge has beaten Bekele on their previous four head-to-head encounters, Bekele has the better record across all distances. The latter has smashed six world records as he holds the 5,000m and 10,000m world records while racking up over 21 Olympic and World Champion titles.

The stage is set at London’s St James Park this Sunday as the long-awaited marathon will be one for the ages. Who do you think will come out as the victor? Drop your comments below:

Comparisons of Eliud Kipchoge and Kenenisa Bekele’s records (Source:Athleticsillustrated)

Kipchoge’s Records:

  1. Only person to run under two hours in the Ineos 1:59 Challenge.
  2. Has won eight consecutive major marathons after 2013: Chicago once, London four times and Berlin thrice.
  3. He has run under 2:05:00 ten times in his career and owns the 1st, 3rd, 9th and 15th fastest marathons all time.

Bekele’s Records:

  1. He owns the second fastest marathon record of 2:01:41 at the 2019 Berlin Marathon.
  2. He owns the 8th fastest record as well at 2:03:03
  3. He has achieved and owns the world 5,000m (12:37:35), 10,000m(26:17:53) records from 2004 and 2005 respectively.
  4. He is an 11-time World Cross Country Championships gold medalist.
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5 thoughts on “The London Marathon: What to Expect in the Race as Kipchoge and Bekele Face Off”

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