Eliud Kipchoge has taken his place in the record books after being the first person to run a marathon under two hours in the INEOS 159 challenge in Vienna. Breaking down the math, Kipchoge ran a distance of 42 Km and clocked 01:59:40, meaning he ran an average of 100m every 17 seconds for the whole distance. By breaking the barrier, Kipchoge has opened the doors of possibilities in long distance running globally and cemented his position as the greatest marathon runner of all time.
Accompanied by 41 pacesetters, who shifted rounds, Kipchoge started the challenge at 9:15 am Kenyan time in Vienna, and maintained a steady pace. A pace setting car and a laser car guiding the runners, they kept within the set timelines to the end, when the record breaker went for the finish line in the last couple meters. Speaking after the run, he thanked the pacesetters and everyone who tuned in to watch him live, saying the challenge required perseverance. He said he woke up as early as 4:00 am to prepare but because of the tension time flew by and it seemed as though it was only 30 minutes.
His trainer Patrick Sang said everything went according to plan, including the changeovers and pacers. He said the record breaking run means a lot for the sport in that it’s challenging other athletes that they can stretch and perform better than what they think.
Many Kenyans were present to cheer him on, led by his wife and three children, Deputy President William Ruto among others. Prior to the INEOS challenge run, Kipchoge had won the London marathon at a time of 2:02:37, the second in time after after his Berlin marathon record time in 2018 of 2:01:39.