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Olympic Champion Peres Jepchirchir Smashes London Marathon Record

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Olympic Champion Peres Jepchirchir Smashes London Marathon Record

(CTN News) – Peres Jepchirchir, an Olympic champion, won the London Marathon in two hours, 16 minutes, and 16 seconds, setting a women’s world record.

Tigst Assefa, Ethiopia’s Megertu Alemu, and Kenya’s Joyciline Jepkosgei all broke the previous women’s only record of 2:17:01 set by Mary Keitany in 2017.

Kenya’s Alexander Mutiso Munyao defeated distance runner Kenenisa Bekele to win the men’s event in 2:04:01.

The British combination of Emile Cairess and Mahamed Mahamed finished third and fourth, respectively.

Cairess’s performance of 2:06:46 makes him the second-fastest British male over the distance and the first to finish on the podium since Sir Mo Farah in 2018.

Cairess and Mahamed will compete in the Olympics this summer, finishing under the qualifying time of 2:08:10.

Switzerland won double in the wheelchair races, with Marcel Hug and Catherine Debrunner winning comfortably.

Hug, who has now won four London Marathons in a row, finished 31 seconds clear of Daniel Romanchuk of the United States, with David Weir of Great Britain in third place.


Debrunner led for a spell and finished more than six minutes ahead of compatriot Manuela Schar to win her second London Marathon.

The women’s race field was regarded as one of the best in history, with three of the four fastest women competing.

They were on track for a women’s only record – a marathon run on a course with no male racers – throughout, with the leading pack quickly separating themselves from the rest of the field.

Women’s elite race results

1. Peres Jepchirchir (Ken) – 2:16:16

2. Tigst Assefa (Eth) – 2:16:23

3. Joyciline Jepkosgei (Ken) – 2:16:24

4. Mergutu Alemu (Eth) – 2:16:34

When the lead group began to thin, only Jepchirchir, Assefa, Jepkosgei, and Alemu remained standing.

They stuck together until Jepchirchir booted for a home in the final hundred meters, and the 30-year-old Kenyan held off Assefa to win in London for the first time.

“I’m feeling grateful. I am overjoyed about the triumph. I wasn’t expecting to run a world record; I knew it could be broken, but I didn’t expect it to be me,” Jepchirchir told BBC Sport.

“I knew the history, and the women were strong. I was working quite hard. My timing was lower, but I improved today and set a new personal best.


“I am thrilled and pleased to have qualified for the Olympics. I’m excited to be in Paris, and my prayer is that I’ll race well enough to defend my title. I know it will not be easy, but I will do my best.”

Kelvin Kiptum, the 2023 winner, was honored before the men’s race. In February, Kenya’s world record holder, who was 24 years old, died in a road accident in his country.

It was fitting that another Kenyan won the race, but Munyao, 27, was pushed hard by Bekele, 41, for much of it.

Men’s elite race results

1. Alexander Mutiso Munyao (Ken) – 2:04:01

2. Kenenisa Bekele (Eth) – 2:04:15

3. Emile Cairess (GB) – 2:06:46

4. Mahamed Mahamed (GB) – 2:07:05

Bekele has won three Olympic gold medals and five world crowns, yet never won the London Marathon.

The Ethiopian appeared to be on track for an unlikely first win, but Munyao picked up the pace in the last stages and raced clear to capture his first victory in London.

“At 40km I got some pressure from Bekele but I had a lot of confidence because I trained for this race,” Munyao said in an interview with BBC Sport.

“After 40 kilometers, I felt I had the energy to win. That is why I kicked, and I was confident I would win.”

When asked about Kiptum, he replied, “I think about him and let him rest in peace.” He came here to London and won. Let him rest peacefully.”

Arsi Mughal is a staff writer at CTN News, delivering insightful and engaging content on a wide range of topics. With a knack for clear and concise writing, he crafts articles that resonate with readers. Arsi's pieces are well-researched, informative, and presented in a straightforward manner, making complex subjects accessible to a broad audience. His writing style strikes the perfect balance between professionalism and casual approachability, ensuring an enjoyable reading experience.

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