Eliud Kipchoge relishing prospect of taking on Mo Farah in London Marathon

• World-record holder will go for fourth London title on 28 April
• Kipchoge: ‘I am looking forward to racing Sir Mo Farah again’

The marathon world record holder, Eliud Kipchoge, says he is “relishing the prospect” of facing Mo Farah again over 26.2 miles after confirming that he will run the London Marathon in April.

Kipchoge, who won his third London title in last year’s race, with Farah finishing third, then went on to set a stunning world record of two hours, one minute and 39 seconds in Berlin in September – beating the previous best by over a minute.

Farah, meanwhile, went on to claim the Chicago Marathon in October in a European record time of 2hr 5min 11sec – and afterwards promised that he was “not afraid to keep turning up in the same field and testing Kipchoge”.

That wish has now been granted with the Kenyan, who was named the 2018 IAAF Athlete of the Year in December, having agreed to make his fourth appearance in London.

“I had a memorable 2018, winning the Virgin Money London Marathon and then setting a new world record at the Berlin marathon and I’m hoping that 2019 is just as good to me,”said Kipchoge.

“I am looking forward to racing Sir Mo Farah again. He is a great champion and proved in Chicago that he can win a major marathon so I relish the battle with him and also the many other great athletes that I’m sure will once again be on the start line in London.”

The top three from the 2018 podium will all be in London again this year with organisers confirming Ethiopia’s 22-year-old marathon star Shura Kitata, who was second to Kipchoge last year before finishing runner-up in the New York marathon in November, will race.

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Hugh Brasher, event director of the race, said he was delighted to have set up a mouthwatering showdown between Kipchoge, who is unbeaten in London and also holds the course record of 2:03.05, and Britain’s greatest distance runner.

“There is no doubt that Eliud Kipchoge is the greatest marathon runner of all time,” he said “Since Sir Mo Farah won the Chicago Marathon in October, everyone has been talking about another head-to-head between Mo and Eliud and we are absolutely thrilled that this showdown will happen.

“We will see two absolute legends of distance running competing over 26.2 miles of roads in the greatest marathon in the world. I cannot wait until Sunday 28 April to see who comes out on top.”


Sean Ingle

The GuardianTramp

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