Eldoret town was set ablaze in song and dance as the world’s greatest marathoner, Eliud Kipchoge, clocked 2:03:42 to win the Berlin Marathon for the fifth time.
Kipchoge’s victory makes him the first runner to win the Berlin Marathon five times.
Referred to as the ‘GOAT’, an acronym for Greatest for All Time, Kipchoge is the current world marathon record holder at 2:01:09.
Hundreds of athletic enthusiasts watching the race on a big screen at the Eldoret-Iten and Uganda road junction, led by Uasin Gishu Governor Jonathan Bii and Ambassador Sebastian Groth of the Federal Republic of Germany to Kenya, broke into song and dance when Kipchoge cut the tape to emerge the winner.
Berlin marathon debutants Vincent Kipkemboi of Kenya and Ethiopia’s Tadese Takele came in second and third with 2:03:14 and 2:03:24, respectively.
In the women’s race, Ethiopia’s Tigst Assefa shattered Kenya’s Brigid Kosgei’s record of 2:14:04 set in 2019 by romping home in a time of 2:11.53 to shed off the old record by 2.11.
Kenya’s Sheila Chepkirui settled for the second spot, clocking 2:17:29, while another Ethiopian Tigist Abayechar, clocked 2:18:51 for the third position.
Before the race, Kipchoge had hinted that he was using the Berlin Marathon to gauge his goal of winning three consecutive Olympic gold medals.
Kipchoge set his eye on competitive athletics when he claimed his first individual world championship title by winning at the junior world cross-country championship.
Governor Bii said he was elated and congratulated Kipchoge on winning the Berlin Marathon for the fifth time. “This is proof that Uasin Gishu and NOREB counties are the source of great sportsmen and women,” said the governor in reference to the North Rift Economic Block (NOREB) counties of Baringo, Elgeyo Marakwet, Nandi, Samburu, Trans Nzoia, Turkana, Uasin Gishu, and West Pokot.
He said the North Rift economic block counties will continue to encourage the youth to explore their different sports talents and thanked the sponsors, including Isuzu, Isense, and the German Embassy, who teamed up with the Nation media group to ensure the race was aired live.
In his remarks, the ambassador said he partnered with NTV to ensure the Berlin Marathon was broadcast live to Kenyans, adding that Germany and Kenya were also celebrating their 60 years of friendship and looking forward to the next phase of friendship.
Kipchoge will be awarded an Isuzu 159 model double Cab, and another model will be made specially for him for winning the Berlin Marathon for the fifth time, an official from Isuzu who declined to be named told KNA.
By Kiptanui Cherono