Kipchoge, the first man to lose two hours, is the third to revalidate the Olympic marathon title
JAPAN – The Kenyan Eliud KipchogeWorld marathon record holder, he has revalidated his Olympic crown in Sapporo with a time of 2:08:38 after traveling the last twelve kilometers alone.
He was accompanied on the podium by two athletes born in Somalia, The dutch Abdi nageeye (2h09: 58) and Belgian Bashir Abdi (2h10: 00), who left the second Kenyan, Lawrence Cherono (2h10: 02) and the Spaniard Ayad Lamdassem (2h10: 16) without a medal, who went with them until the last kilometer .
Kipchoge, the first man to lose the two hours (1h59: 40, mark not approved because the Vienna race did not comply with the regulations), is the third to revalidate the Olympic marathon title, an achievement that only the Ethiopian Abebe Bikila (Rome ’60 and Tokyo’64) and East German Waldemar Cierpinski (Montreal’76 and Moscow’80) had succeeded to date.
The Olympic champion and world record holder, the greatest marathon runner in history, led the group of 106 athletes from 45 countries who at 7:00 a.m. left Odori Park in Sapporo, in a circuit with many people on either side, to intervene in the last Tokyo 2020 athletics event.
The weather conditions at the start were somewhat more favorable than in the women’s marathon on Saturday: 26 degrees and 80 percent humidity.
For ten years Kipchoge he remained undefeated in ten races, until last October 4, on a cold and rainy London morning, he finished eighth with the worst time of his life (2:06:49) in a race won by the Ethiopian Shura Kitata (today quickly off the hook) , although in April he resumed his victories in Enschede (Netherlands) with 2:04:30.
Older fans still remember what happened in the marathon of the Tokyo’64 Games, where Abebe Bikila, the Ethiopian with bare feet, revalidated, now with slippers, his Rome title. The drama unfolded behind his back.