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Kipchoge, Cherono named best marathoners in 2018

ATHLETICS By Stephen Rutto | November 10th 2018 | 2 min read
Athletics - Berlin Marathon - Berlin, Germany - September 16, 2018 Kenya's Eliud Kipchoge and Gladys Cherono Kiprono celebrate with the fans after both winning the Berlin Marathon

Barely two months after setting the new world marathon record of 2:01:39,  Eliud Kipchoge has been named the Association of International Marathons and Distance Races (AIMS) best Marathon Runner of the year.

AIMS also named Berlin marathon champion Gladys Cherono as the best female marathoner of 2018.

The Kenyan duo posted jaw-dropping results this year.

The AIMS athletes’ nomination committee has decided that for this year (October, 1 2017 to September 30, 2018) Kipchoge and Cherono were the outstanding candidates for the awards based on their performances over the past 12 months.

Kipchoge is undefeated in the marathon in 2018, winning in London and Berlin. His victory in Berlin was in a world record of 2:01:39, taking 78 seconds off the previous record – the biggest single improvement on the world record for more than 50 years.

Cherono won the Berlin Marathon in a world-leading time of 2:18:11. She finished fourth at the London Marathon earlier in the year in 2:24:10.

The achievements of the two Kenyan athletes were set to receive global recognition during the AIMS ‘Best Marathon Runner’ Awards Gala in Athens, Greece yesterday.

Kipchoge, together with four other Kenyans including world 3,000m steeplechase record holder Beatrice Chepkoech, 800m runner Emmanuel Korir and IAAF 1,500m Diamond League Trophy winner Timothy Cheruiyot are also in the list for the IAAF Male and Female Athletes of the Year awards.

Meanwhile, Kenyans Marius Kimutai and defending champion Ruth Chepngetich will start as the favourites at the Vodafone Istanbul Marathon, an IAAF Gold Label Road Race tomorrow.

Connecting two continents since 1979, the Istanbul Marathon is celebrating its 40th birthday this year. As in previous years, the race starts on the Asian side of the city, crosses the July 15 Martyrs Bridge over the Bosphorus, and finishes on the European side at the Hippodrome, one of the oldest race tracks in the world, situated in the Sultanahmet district, where the famous Blue Mosque and Hagia Sophia are located.

The hot favourite to arrive first in the historical peninsula is Kimutai who can boast of a 2:05:47 personal best, achieved in Rotterdam two years ago. Having finished his recent seven marathons well under 2:10, the Kenyan is also a candidate to break the 2:10:42 race record set by Kenyan Vincent Kiplagat in 2010, a performance that is also the Turkish all-comers record.

Kimutai is likely to be challenged by Ethiopia’s Getu Feleke whose career best is 2:04:50 set at the 2012 Rotterdam Marathon. More recently, Feleke clocked 2:07:46 at the Frankfurt Marathon last year. However, 21-year-old Bahraini Abdi Ibrahim Abdo, who has a fresh PB of 2:08:32 from Rome this year, is expected to be a strong contender as well.

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