Tokyo Marathon: victory for Kenyan Benson Kipruto, hiccup for Eliud Kipchoge who finishes tenth

“It’s like that, it’s not every day Christmas

Tokyo Marathon: victory for Kenyan Benson Kipruto, hiccup for Eliud Kipchoge who finishes tenth

“It’s like that, it’s not every day Christmas.” Fatalist but realistic, the Kenyan Eliud Kipchoge suffered a hitch in his preparation to try to win a third consecutive Olympic gold medal at the Paris Olympic Games, finishing on Sunday March 3 in a disappointing tenth place in the marathon. from Tokyo.

The race was won by his compatriot Benson Kipruto in 2:2:16, who broke the course record, ahead of two other Kenyans, Timothy Kiplagat (2:2:55) and Vincent Ngetich (2:4:18). s). Kipchoge, 39, crossed the finish line in 2:6:50, more than 4:30 after the winner.

The event took place less than a month after the death of world record holder Kelvin Kiptum and his Rwandan coach Gervais Hakizimana in a road accident in Kenya. Kiptum, 24, had recently broken the world record previously held by Kipchoge, with a time of 2:0:35 at the Chicago Marathon. The two athletes were to compete for the first time at the Paris Olympics.

Ethiopian Sutume Asefa Kebede wins the women’s race

The Tokyo marathon was Kipchoge's first race since Kiptum's death, and he seemed on track to reclaim the world record around the 15km mark. But then he slowed down dramatically, leaving Kiplagat, Kipruto and Ngetich in the lead pack. As difficulties continued to mount for Kipchoge, Kipruto passed Kiplagat after about 30km of racing and raced towards the finish to set a new personal best.

“Something happened in the middle of the race,” Eliud Kipchoge told Japanese broadcaster Nippon TV, without specifying what exactly it was. It is “too early to say” what form he will be in for the Olympics, the Kenyan continued. “I’m going to go home, relax and start training.”

Ethiopia's Sutume Asefa Kebede won the women's race in 2:15:55, ahead of Kenya's defending champion Rosemary Wanjiru (2:16:14) and Ethiopian world champion Amane Beriso Shankule (2:16). 58 sec).