Kipsang revved up to reclaim marathon world record in Tokyo
Two-time London, Berlin and New York winner Wilson Kipsang is out reclaim the world record over the distance during the 2017 running of the Tokyo Marathon on February 26 despite the anticipated cold weather.
Kipsang, 34, who is also eying the Keiyo South parliamentary seat at the forthcoming General Election believes his hunger to reclaim the world record will push him to setting at least a new course record in the Japan World Marathon Majors race.
At the 2013 Berlin Marathon, Kipsang stopped the clock at 2:03:23 to obliterate Patrick Makau’s previous 2:03:38 world record set at the same course in 2011.
His standard lasted only a year when compatriot and Volare Sports teammate, Dennis Kimetto shattered the 2:03 barrier when he won the 2014 Berlin race in 2:02:57.
Since then, Kipsang has run faster since when he was beaten by Ethiopian Kenenisa Bekele to the crown last year in Berlin where he clocked his lifetime best of 2:03:13 for second and he maintains he can go out even quicker in Tokyo.
“For now, my main focus in athletics is Tokyo. My preparation all through from Berlin is going very well and I feel I have the potential to run faster than Berlin if all conditions allow.
“I know it will be very cold but if the weather will be good, there is a high possibility because Tokyo is one of the fastest course, if guys have been running 2:05 it shows it’s a very fast race,” Kipsang told Citizen TV at his Iten home where he is camping in readiness for Tokyo.
“If I prepare myself well with the right approach and strong pacemakers, we want to really try to see whether we can run under 2:02:57,” the 2012 London Olympics bronze winner declared.
Kipsang’s interest in reclaiming the world record has been further motivated by the collapsed attempt by Bekele at the recent Stanchart Dubai Marathon.
“It has always been my dream because once I broke the world record in 2013, I have never lost hope to keep trying and going for it once more. I tried recently and missed it by 15 seconds.
“If I make the next try, there is a possibility. I ran in 2011 and I missed (it). I tried in 2013, yes! If I keep on with the spirit of training so hard and having the passion to break the record, in due time, we will have a new record,” Kipsang who is also studying for a degree in Criminology and Investigations asserted.
Ranked among the finest marathoners of his generation, Kipsang is also running for political office and he insists his bid to become a Member of Parliament will not derail his athletics career.
However, he has ruled himself out from running for his country at the IAAF World Championships in London since they will clash with the August 8 polls.
“Running for Kenya was on my mind since after running Tokyo, I had enough time from March to August to prepare for the World Championships but for sure, it will not be possible since we can’t mix the elections,” Kipsang told.