Written by: Shannon Polk, Kudos Team Contributor
Another World Marathon Major is on the horizon! Known for producing world records, the Berlin Marathon is set to kick off on Sunday at 3:15 a.m. ET. The timing is perfect because you can have a fun night out on Saturday and get home in time to see the race! Of course, you can also just go to bed early, set your alarm, watch the race and then go back to bed. Either way, you should tune in for the chance to see a new world record!
So who are the contenders? On the men’s side, Eliud Kipchoge (KEN) is the man to beat, having won the London Marathon earlier this year with a 2:04:17 finishing time. He also won last year’s Berlin marathon with a 2:03:32 finish and ran 2:00:25 at Nike’s Breaking2 marathon attempt. Another runner to watch is Wilson Kipsang (KEN), who will be looking to redeem himself after dropping out near mile 19 last year due stomach problems.
The women’s field will be led by Tirunesh Dibaba (ETH), who is looking to break her personal best of 2:17:56 set at last year’s London Marathon. Dibaba has an impressive resume and could certainly be a contender to break Paula Radcliffe’s long-standing world record of 2:15:25 set in 2002. Last year’s winner, Gladys Cherono (KEN), will also be competing alongside her compatriot and two-time World Champion Edna Kiplagat (KEN). It will be exciting to see how the elite women pace each other in this race.
Now how will Mother Nature impact the outcome? The good news is that the weather won’t be rainy like this year’s Boston Marathon and is expected to be cooler than London, so the conditions should be prime for producing fast times. As an added bonus, it’s supposed to be cloudy which should prevent athletes from getting drained and dehydrated as quickly.
In addition to the marathon, there will be a kids’ run, mini-marathon and inline skating marathon on Saturday as well as handbikers and wheelchair participants on Sunday. Good luck to the 60,000+ participants this weekend and kudos to you all!