Peres Jepchirchir's reaction after breaking Mary Keitany's women marathon record

Peres Jepchirchir's reaction after breaking Mary Keitany's women marathon record

Festus Chuma 09:00 - 22.04.2024

Peres Jepchirchir broke Mary Keitany's women-only marathon record at the 2024 London Marathon on Sunday surprising herself with her outstanding performance.

2024 London Marathon winner Peres Jepchirchir has expressed her astonishment at breaking the women's only world record previously held by Mary Keitany.

 In what turned into a historic run, Jepchirchir clocked an incredible time of 2:16:16 surpassing Keitany's record by 45 seconds.

Speaking shortly after her victory Jepchirchir shared her feelings on the monumental achievement. 

"I am feeling grateful. I am so happy for the victory. I was not expecting to run a world record — I knew it might be beaten, but I did not expect it to be me," she stated as per BBC.

The race was noted for its intensity and the caliber of competitors. 

Jepchirchir was up against a strong field, including three-time world half marathon champion and world record-holder Tigist Assefa, 2021 London winner Joyciline Jepkosgei, and last year's runner-up Megertu Alemu.

 Despite the fierce competition, Jepchirchir managed to pull ahead in the final stages of the race, securing her spot at the top.

The race strategy was aggressive from the start, with the lead pack including Jepchirchir and other elite runners setting a blistering pace early on. 

They ran the first 5km in 15:44, well inside a 2:13 pace, and maintained their momentum to stay well ahead of the chasing pack.

 "I knew the history and the ladies were strong. I was working extra hard. My time was lower, but I've come good today and set a personal best," Jepchirchir added.

Her performance not only secured her a new world record but also qualified her for the upcoming Paris Olympics. 

Jepchirchir expressed both joy and a touch of nerves when discussing her future prospects.

 "I am so happy to qualify for the Olympics, and I feel grateful. I'm happy to be at Paris, and my prayer is to be there and run well to defend my title. I know it won't be easy, but I'll try my best," she noted.

The race's depth and quality were widely regarded as some of the best ever seen, particularly in a women's only field.

 Past winners and record holders like Brigid Kosgei and Yalemzerf Yehualaw, along with newcomers like Sheila Chepkirui, made significant contributions to the pace and competition setting the stage for a dramatic finale.

The lead changed several times in the closing kilometers, with Jepchirchir and Assefa taking turns testing each other's resolve. 

However, it was Jepchirchir who had the final say, unleashing her trademark finish to surge ahead in the last minutes of the race. She finished seven seconds ahead of Assefa, with Jepkosgei and Alemu following closely.

This marathon marked the first time four women finished inside 2:17 highlighting the extraordinary progress in women's long-distance running.

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