2018 Tokyo Marathon: Dickson completes fifth consecutive podium finish

By DENNIS OKEYO: Monday, February 26th 2018 at 00:08 GMT +3 | Athletics
Dickson Chumba of Kenya holds up the winner's trophy during the awards ceremony following his victory in the Tokyo Marathon in Tokyo on February 25, 2018. / AFP PHOTO

Chumba saves the day, but Kipsang bid falters

Defending champion Wilson drops out after just 15 kilometres.

Kenyan’s Dickson Chumba reclaimed top honours at the 2018 Tokyo Marathon yesterday on a day defending champion Wilson Kipsang failed in his mission to set a new world record.

He bowed out of the race after just 15 kilometres.

Chumba made his victory intentions clear with 5km left when he sprinted and dropped compatriots Amos Kipruto and Gideon Kipketer to convincingly triumph in two hours, five minutes, and 30 seconds.

The victory was Chumba’s fifth podium finish on the trot and his second Tokyo Marathon title.

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Chumba, 31, worked as a gardener before turning professional in 2008 under Claudio Berardelli in Kapsabet.

He made his marathon debut with a runner-up finish at the 2010 Madrid Marathon. In 2015, he won the Chicago marathon in a time of 2:09.25.

Cheered by the home crowd, Japanese Yuta Shitara made a surprise package cruising past Kipruto and Kipkeker in the final stages of the race to finish second in 2:06.10, dropping a massive three minutes from his previous personal best and Japanese national record.

For his troubles, he earned $936,000 (Sh95 million) which was set by the organiser.

Kipruto timed 2:06.33 and Kipketer (2:06.47) to finish third and fourth respectively.

Another Japanese, Hiroto Inoue, finished fifth in 2:06.54.

In last year's Berlin Marathon, Kipsang 35, was bidding to break Dennis Kimetto’s world best mark of 2:02.57, but dropped out at the 30km mark. He was also unlucky this time round as he threw in the towel at the 15km mark. In the women's race, Kenyan’s Hellah Kiprop was outside podium when she finished fifth in 2:28.58. Ethiopian Birhane Dibaba won the race.