34-year-old Eliud Kipchoge has changed history in becoming the first long-distance runner to ever complete a marathon in under two hours on Saturday. He managed to break the infamously challenging 2-hour barrier by a hair’s breadth 20 seconds.
He finished this almighty performance at the Ineos 1:59 challenge in Vienna, Austria with a time of 1 hour 59 minutes and 40 seconds.
Even though he has created an awe-inspiring legacy, the timing will not be recognised as an official world record due to Kipchoge using assistance in the form of pacemakers.
Also, it was not executed within an open competition according to the IAAF’s rules.
Kipchoge used 41 pacemakers to accomplish this feat as did several other world-class long-distance running athletes such as Japanese Kota Murayama and the Ingebrigtsen brothers from Norway.
After thanking his pacemakers, Kipchoge said the following: “We can make this world a beautiful world and a peaceful world. My wife and three children, I am happy for them to come and witness history.”
After the events that took place, he tweeted on his official Twitter account: “Today we went to the Moon and came back to earth! I am at a loss for words for all the support I have received from all over the world. Thank you to all who gave me the opportunity.”
He previously attempted this challenge in the Italian city of Monza two years ago but failed to do so by only 25 seconds.
Britain’s richest man and billionaire Sir Jim Ratcliffe, through Ineos – his multi-national chemicals company – sponsored Kipchoge’s attempt. On top of that, he sponsored the cycling team known as Team Ineos.
Who is Eliud Kipchoge?
He holds the official marathon world record set in Berlin last year. He was born in Kapsisiywa in Kenya on the 5th of November 1984. He ran to school for two miles every day which kickstarted his career in long-distance running.
He currently lives with his wife and three children in Eldoret – currently the fastest growing town in Kenya. He also stated that he does his training in his home country of Kenya as well as staying there with his family.
He has previously represented Kenya in the Olympic Games. He has been awarded a bronze medal in Athens in 2004, a silver medal in Beijing in 2008 and a gold medal in Rio de Janeiro in 2016. He also received a silver medal in the 2010 Delhi Commonwealth Games.
Since 2014, he had been given 8 gold medals in the World Marathon Majors. He was inspired by his coach, Patrick Sang, to start running professionally.