Kenya's Edwin Kiptoo wins 40th Athens Marathon with new course record

Edwin Kiptoo of Kenya set a new course record at the 40th Athens Marathon in 2:10:34 on Sunday, slicing three seconds off of the previous record of 2:10:37 set by fellow Kenyan Felix Kipchirchir Kandie in 2014.

"I was not well prepared for the race. I did not expect to break the record. I thank my family for giving me ample time to prepare for this marathon," said the 30-year-old who shook off his main challengers over the second half of the course and ran the last 10 kilometers alone.

Kiptoo's compatriots Rhonzai Lokitam Kilimo and Felicien Muhitira of Rwanda finished second and third in the men's event. Moroccan Soukaina Atanane finished first in the women's category in 2:31:52, followed by Kenya's Caroline Jepchirchir and local Gloria Privileggio. 

The event attracted some 70,000 runners from 140 countries and regions in the 42km course, as well as the 10km, 5km and kids' races, setting a record high of participants, according to the Hellenic Athletics Federation. The 42km classic course from Marathon city to Athens follows in the footsteps of ancient soldier Pheidippides who inspired the race.

The Athens Marathon has a relatively hilly route, which somehow makes it almost impossible for runners to set a world record here, with the course rising almost continuously between the 17th and 32nd kilometers before descending most of the rest of the way.

posted Monday November 13th