The Ethiopian claimed his first victory in the final leg of the competition, while favorite Kipchoge finished eighth
October 4, 2020 Share on FacebookShare Share on TwitterTweet Share on WhatsAppShareFinal of the London Marathon 2020
The rain and the cold marked the evolution of a London Marathon that ended up in a tight sprint at the hands of the Ethiopian Shura Kitata, after the abdication of four-time champion Eliud Kipchoge, who could not adapt to the harsh conditions and was sank down the stretch
The loss of Kenenisa Bekele just two days before the race, due to an injury to a calf, left Kipchoge as a great favorite for the final triumph, but the Kenyan could not meet expectations and after being threatened the entire race, unable to leave to his pursuers behind, he yielded the throne down the stretch.
The race, which without the pandemic would have been held in April, took place this Sunday in 19 laps around St. James Park.
The rainfall caused the athletes to take extra precautions when cornering and this was already noticeable from the middle of the race, with times far removed from the records of other years. Kipchoge, along with the leading group, reached the middle of the race in a time of 1:02:54, which practically already made it clear that the world record that he achieved in Berlin in 2018 would not be exceeded.
The Ethiopian Kitata took the victory in the final meters (Richard Heathcote / Pool via AP)
Just a few kilometers from the finish, Kipchoge dropped down, behind six runners and anticipating what was to be his second loss in the thirteen marathons he has run, after second place at Berlin 2013.
From that second place, the Kenyan won the gold medal in the Chicago Marathon (2014), in London (2015, 2016, 2018 and 2019), in Berlin (2015, 2017 and 2018) and in the Rio 2016 Olympic Games .
After 40 kilometers, the leading group was reduced to just two riders, Kitata and Vincent Kipchumba, winner last year in Vienna and Amsterdam. The race, exciting until the last moment, was decided in the sprint and Kitata took the victory with a time of 2:05:41, followed by Kipchumba and with Sisay Lemma in third position.
The one who did not have an easy race was Mo Farah , who retired after 30 kilometers and after fulfilling his role as hare for the rest of the runners. The Briton therefore fell short of the minimum mark for the Olympics, set at 2:11.
Kitata did a time of 02:05:41 – REUTERS / John Sibley
In the women's event, Brigid Kosgei took the victory , achieving her second crown in the British capital. The rain that has fallen since this Friday in London prevented the world record holder from reaching a new record and stopped the clock at 2:18:58 , followed by the American Sara Hall, who finished three minutes and three seconds behind the Kenyan.
“We suffered a lot because the weather was not good at all,” explained the winner of the test.
In the popular category, more than 45,000 athletes signed up for the test , but they had to do it individually in different routes that they marked through a mobile application.