Eliud Kipchoge's fastest marathon won't be recognised

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Eliud Kipchoge, Lelisa Desisa and Zersenay Tadese are the three fearless runners that will attempt to run a marathon in under two hours with the help of a Tesla pace vehicle which will maintain a pace of two hours.

Kenyan athlete Eliud Kipchoge ran a marathon in Italy in just over two hours - beating the previous fastest time, but his achievement won't be in the record books.

Eliud Kipchoge of Kenya, Eritrea's Zersenay Tadese and Ethiopia's Lelisa Desisa will make the attempt by running around the Monza motor-racing track in Italy which is home to the Italian Formula 1 Grand Prix. The race used pace runners and a hydration strategy that disqualifies it for an official record, but the company refuted the suggestion that it's a marketing stunt created to showcase its new Zoom Vaporfly Elite more than the runners who wear the shoe.

David Bedford, a former British distance runner from the 1970s who held the 10,000-meter world record, was skeptical about the race. The runners were lead by a Tesla that laser-projected a green line in front of them to indicate the ideal speed.

Nike calls the attempt to shave three minutes off the current world record a moonshot. Guided by a platoon of pacing runners, the three started together but in the end it was Kipchoge who came closest to the goal.

Nike selected the Monza race track near Milan, Italy as the site of the attempt, opting for a controlled situation rather than, say, an environment like the NY or London marathons.


In Eliud Kipchoge, the "Breaking2" project has the 2016 Olympic champion and the 2016 victor of the London marathon. The duo still completed the 17.5 laps of the 1.5-mile Monza track with Tadese shaving almost four minutes off his personal best with a time of 2:06:51. It has taken seven good months of preparation and dedication, but I am happy to have done that time.

Denis Kimetto's World Record time from the Berlin Marathon in 2014 of 2:02:57 was easily broken, by over two-and-a-half minutes. Today, it is not uncommon for high schoolers to break four minutes in the mile and it is not even an automatic qualifier for the NCAA championships.

Nike's ambitious Breaking2 event may have fallen just short of the coveted record, but still proved to be an exciting endeavor.

If Kipchoge, Desisa or Tadese runs 26.2 miles in fewer than two hours Friday night, Nike claims a major victory. But increasingly scientists are convinced that the sub-two-hour marathon is achievable.

Kipchoge needed an average of 2:50 per kilometre - an improvement of around 2.5 per cent on Kimetto's record.

"I think we need to accept it as it is".

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