Kenyan Cybrian Kotut, the defending champion and course record holder, will return to the Haspa Marathon Hamburg on April 23
A year ago the Kenyan took the Hamburg title with a 2:04:47 performance and smashed the course record set by Eliud Kipchoge back in 2013. Kotut will face a very strong field and will need to be at his best to have a chance of a second triumph at Germany’s biggest spring marathon. With a personal best of 2:03:16 Ethiopia’s Mule Wasihun is the fastest runner entered in the event. Online registration for the 37th edition of the Haspa Marathon Hamburg is still possible at: www.haspa-marathon-hamburg.de
“A year after Kotut’s course record performance organisers can again hope for a fast race and possibly a record. A number of world-class athletes have opted to run their spring marathon in Hamburg which shows the recognition our race receives as a major international marathon,“ said chief organiser Frank Thaleiser.
Kotut, who is a younger brother of former multiple London and New York Marathon winner Martin Lee, clocked his personal best when winning Hamburg in 2022. Since then he only ran one more race, finishing with a fast time of 2:05:15 for sixth place in Amsterdam. The Kenyan is fully focussing on the Haspa Marathon Hamburg again. However with his PB of 2:04:47 the 30 year-old is not the fastest runner in the field. Instead Mule Wasihun heads the entry list. In a memorable race at the London Marathon 2019 the Ethiopian ran 2:03:16 finishing third behind Eliud Kipchoge and fellow-countryman Mosinet Geremew. With this PB 29 year-old Wasihun still is among the 15 fastest marathon runners ever. The Ethiopian has not raced internationally recently and will hope to come back with a strong performance in Hamburg.
Geoffrey Kirui is another prominent marathon runner, who will race in Hamburg for the first time. The Kenyan took the World Championships’ marathon title in London in 2017 after winning Boston in the spring. Kirui then was second and fifth in Boston in 2018 and 2019 respectively. While he could not reach those highs since the disruption caused by the pandemic, at the age of 30 he should still be capable of producing very good marathon results. Hamburg could be the place for Geoffrey Kirui to finally improve his PB of 2:06:27 from 2016.
Last year debutant Stephen Kissa finished just a second behind Cybrian Kotut and clocked an Ugandan record with 2:04:48. This time there is another debutant in the field who could potentially start his marathon career with a bang: Muktar Edris will run his first marathon in Hamburg on 23rd April. The 29 year-old Ethiopian is the 5,000 m World Champion from 2017 and 2019. He has already shown his great potential on the road, when he clocked a world-class time of 58:40 at the Valencia half marathon in 2021.
With regard to achieving top finishing places the Haspa Marathon Hamburg will be a tough challenge for Germany’s European Marathon Champion: Richard Ringer, whose start had already been announced back in December, should however be able to improve his PB of 2:08:49.
posted Tuesday March 14th
by Christopher Kelsall