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London Marathon 2024: Kenya's Peres Jepchirchir shatters women's marathon world record

Published at :April 21, 2024 at 5:27 PM
Modified at :April 21, 2024 at 5:27 PM
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(Courtesy : Bob Martin / London Marathon Events)

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Kenyan Olympian broke Mary Keitany’s longstanding mark with blistering 2:16:16 finish.

Olympic champion Peres Jepchirchir smashed the women-only world record by 45 seconds at the TCS London Marathon, winning the World Athletics Platinum Label road race in 2:16:16* on Sunday (21).

The three-time world half marathon champion sprinted away from world record-holder Tigist Assefa, 2021 London winner Joyciline Jepkosgei and last year’s runner-up Megertu Alemu – all of whom finished inside 2:17 – to notch up her third victory in a World Marathon Majors race.

The pace had been swift from the outset as a lead pack of nine women passed through 10km in 31:26. By the time they reached half way in 1:07:04, the pack was down to seven women. It was about 18 miles into the race when the quartet of Jepchirchir, Assefa, Jepkosgei and Alemu managed to detach themselves from the rest of the field, and they ran together for the best part of eight miles.

As the clock ticked to 2:15, with little more than a minute of running left, Alemu was finally dropped. Seconds later, Jepchirchir unleashed her trademark finish to leave behind Jepkosgei and Assefa.

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The diminutive Kenyan charged through the finish line in 2:16:16, breaking the women-only world record of 2:17:01 set by Mary Keitany in 2017.

Moments later, Alexander Mutiso Munyao made it a Kenyan double by winning the men’s race in 2:04:01, finishing 14 seconds ahead of Ethiopia’s Kenenisa Bekele.

Hailing from Kenya’s fertile athletics cradle, Jepchirchir’s love affair with running blossomed during her school days, where she honed her skills on the track.

It was Keitany’s trailblazing achievements as a world half marathon champion that truly ignited Jepchirchir’s competitive fire. In 2013, she took her first strides into the world of road racing, announcing her arrival with a duo of 10K victories in South Africa.

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