Eliud Kipchoge smashes world marathon record by 78 seconds in Berlin

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Widely seen as the greatest marathon runner of the modern era, he is a former world champion over 5000 metres and the marathon gold medallist at the 2016 Olympics in Rio.

"I lack words to describe this day", admitted Kipchoge afterwards, briefly dumbstruck by what he had achieved. "I am just so incredibly happy to have finally run the world record as I never stopped having belief in myself". I ran my own race, I trusted my trainers, my programme and my coach. Usually stoic and reserved, he pumped his arms and crossed the finish line in 2:01:40 to cut one minute and 17 seconds off Kimetto's record.

Kipchoge, 33, is the reigning Olympic champion in the marathon and has run the fastest recorded time over 26.2 miles-a blistering 2 hours and 25 seconds- as part of a Nike-sponsored marketing event previous year that wasn't a ratified race.

Similarly astonishing is the speed at which Kipchoge ran the second-half of the race specifically.

"The winning time is now official and another second faster: 2:01:39 for Eliud Kipchoge!" it said.

The world record is no stranger to Berlin as it has been set in this race in the last six times that it had been lowered before Sunday. While trying to shatter the two-hour marathon barrier, Nike devised a plan for Kipchoge to race under optimal conditions where temperatures were almost ideal for the Formula 1 track in Monza, Italy and he could be assisted by an alternating cast of pacers almost every step of the way. Kipchoge had covered 40km in a time of 1:56:32, a whooping 57 seconds of the record.

From an Irish perspective, his time would outstrip the best efforts of any Irish runner over the half-marathon.

The 33-year-old Kipchoge, who won in Berlin in 2015, edged out compatriot Amos Kipruto to second place in 2:06:20 as the 2013 Berlin Marathon champion Wilson Kipsang settled third in 2:06:47.

The Newspaper added: "When Kipchoge actually enters a race, he sends ripples through the field before his races even begin".

In another victory for Kenyan athletics, Gladys Cherono won the women's race in 2 hours, 18 minutes and 11 seconds, setting a new women's record for the course in Berlin.

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