Keitany signaled that she is in fine form ahead of her world
record bid at the London Marathon with a searing time in the Ras
Al Khaimah (RAK) Half Marathon on Feb 9.
The 34-year-old Kenyan, who set a new women’s world record at
the 2017 London showpiece last year, came second in RAK with a
time of 64:55 minutes, missing out by two seconds to fellow
countrywoman Fancy Chemutai, who set a new course record and
narrowly missed out on a new world record for 21km distance.
“The marathon world record is something that I have been working
towards for several years and I feel I am now in the position
where I can really attack the time of 2:15:25 set by Paula
Radcliffe,” said Keitany.
“At last year’s London Marathon, I was feeling good but it was
hard to run nearly half the race on my own,” she added.
Keitany sits tied at the top of the women’s standings with
Ethiopia’s Tirunesh Dibaba in the World Marathon Majors (WMM)
quest, and the pair will face each other in London on April 22.
Mercy Kosgei, Gladys Cherono and 2017 world champion Rose
Chelimo (all from Kenya) also feature in a loaded field in
London looking to gatecrash the party.
With Tokyo and Boston to come before then, however, there is
potential for the WMM leaderboard to be shaken up before the
Series reaches the English capital.
Ethiopia’s Ruti Aga, currently on 16 points, has a chance to
pull level at the top if she can win in Japan, while Shalane
Flanagan (USA) and Edna Kiplagat of Kenya both line up in Boston
knowing victory can put them ahead of the pack.
second win for the American, following her stunning victory over
Keitany in the New York City Marathon, can catapult her to 50
points, while a repeat of her 2017 success on Boston street will
see Kiplagat take a four-point advantage.
mark at Ras Al Khaimah HM may be considered for WR
NAIROBI, (Xinhua) --
Kenya’s Fancy Chemutai may be granted equal
status as world record holder after organizers of Ras Al Khaimah
Half Marathon confirmed they will apply to IAAF for ratification
of her winning time.
Chemutai’s braved a spirited challenge from compatriot Mary
Keitany to clock 65:42 and agonizingly missed on the world
record by only two seconds.
“My victory in Ras Al Khaimah was great. Disappointed it was not
a world record,” said Chemutai.
“With an ankle problem in my preparation, I have lost some
important training days, but so extremely proud I made it this
far. Thanks to my management and sponsor for the support.”
However, the organizers feel Chemutai’s mark deserves to be
recorded as a world record as it will equal the existing
official record of another Kenyan Joyciline Jepkosgei of 65:42
from Prague Half last year.
Though Jepkosgei has since improved on that record to 65:41 at
the Valencia Half Marathon in October, but that time is yet to
be ratified by IAAF as a world record. Also the 10-mile split of
49:29 by Caroline Kipkirui is an all-time best.
Now Chemutai will be keen to shake off her ankle problem and
focus on winning Kenya a medal at the World Half Marathon in
Valencia, Spain on March 24.
Chemutai will have to join forces with Jepkosgei, who was sixth
at Ras Al Khaimah, for the task ahead.
The two will be joined by Ruth Chepngetich, who won the Istanbul
Half Marathon last year with others including Pauline Kaveke and
Kenya’s Peris Jepchirchir, who is the World Half Marathon
defending champion from Cardiff in 2016, will not be returning
to defend his crown.
However, she joined an exclusive club of past winners from
Kenya. The list includes legendary Tegla Loroupe, marathon icon
Mary Keitany, Florence Kiplagat and Gladys Cherono.
Keitany on the other hand, will be hoping to emerge from the
loss to Chemutai with gust and enthusiasm as she heads to London
in a bid to set a new world record in women marathon on April