Runner Falls 26 Seconds Short of 2-Hour Marathon

'We are human,' Kipchoge says
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted May 6, 2017 9:07 AM CDT
Runner Falls 26 Seconds Short of 2-Hour Marathon
Athletes compete in the marathon at the Monza Formula One racetrack, Italy, Saturday, May 6, 2017.   (Luca Bruno)

Eliud Kipchoge was 26 seconds from making history on Saturday but the Olympic champion finished just short of becoming the first person to run a marathon in less than two hours. Kipchoge ran the 26.2 mile around an oval track in an impressive 2 hours, 25 seconds, smashing Dennis Kimetto's world mark of 2:02:57 by 2.5 minutes and raising hopes that one of world sport's most famous barriers can be broken, the AP reports. "We are human," the Kenyan said, adding that he is happy to have taken more than two minutes off the world record. "We are going up the tree," he said. "I have lifted a branch and I am going onto the next one."

Widely considered the best marathon runner in the world, Kipchoge did break his personal best time of 2:03:05, which was set at the London Marathon last year. Kimetto set the world mark in Berlin in 2014. Organizers first listed Kipchoge's time as a second faster, then changed it to 25 seconds off the 2-hour mark. The Breaking2 project was held at Italy's 1.5-mile Monza Formula One track on the 63rd anniversary of Roger Bannister breaking the four-minute mile in 1954. "I rank this as the highest-ever performance in my life," Kipchoge said. "The aim of 'Breaking2' was to pass the message that running a less than two-hour marathon is possible. That message is really special to me." (More Eliud Kipchoge stories.)

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