Brigid Kosgei retains London Marathon title

By BBC On Sun, 4 Oct, 2020 12:37 | 2 mins read
Brigid Kosgei
World record holder Brigid Kosgei has retained her London Marathon title. PHOTO | AFP

World record holder Brigid Kosgei retained her London Marathon title with a commanding performance on a wet and closed course in the city.

The 26-year-old Kenyan, who broke Paula Radcliffe’s world record in Chicago last year, went clear of world champion Ruth Chepngetich after mile 18.

She finished alone on The Mall in two hours 18 minutes and 58 seconds to claim the $30,000 (£23,200) prize.

She was almost five minutes outside her world record set in Chicago last year.

“The weather was not good so we struggled,” Kosgei told BBC Sport. “I struggled up to the moment I finished.

“We have not prepared well due to the pandemic. I will be prepared for good results next year.”

The London Marathon, rescheduled from its traditional April date because of the coronavirus pandemic, is taking place for elite runners only over 19 laps around St James’s Park.

World record holder Eliud Kipchoge is the clear favourite to win the men’s race which started after the women’s event. The wheelchair races take place after the men’s race has finished.

The usual mass participation event is happening virtually because of covid-19 restrictions, but the men’s and wheelchair elite race will follow on the specially designed course.

American Sara Hall dramatically overhauled Chepngetich to finish second.

Hall, who has promised to donate her winnings to children charities her adopted children’s native Ethiopia, sprinted clear in the final few hundred metres.

British runners were attempting to duck inside the Olympic qualifying time of 2:29:30,

However, Steph Twell, who reached world finals and won a European medal on the track, could not repeat her rapid time from Frankfurt last year. The 31-year-old limped out around mile 16. Lily Partridge, the 2018 British champion, also could not finish.

In their absence Natasha Cockram and Naomi Mitchell fought for the domestic title, with Cockram finishing four seconds ahead of her rival.

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