NAIROBI (Xinhua) --
The debate over who is the greatest marathon
runner has been answered emphatically by Kenyan Olympic champion
The 33-year-old said
on Monday that he will not celebrate his win in London, the
third in as many attempts, but rather will focus on the fact
that his victory has inspired many to carry on in his footsteps.
Despite missing the
world marathon record by 80 seconds because of the hot weather
conditions, Kipchoge remained cool.
“I can’t complain
about the weather, it was the same for all 40,000 competitors. I
don’t think I will celebrate this performance, I have celebrated
by inspiring many people,” he said.
It was Kipchoge’s
eighth straight marathon. He started his marathon career with a
win in Hamburg, Germany in 2013 and lost his only race in Berlin
the same year to Wilson Kipsang, who set a world record of
Kipchoge went on to
win in Rotterdam and Chicago in 2014, London and Berlin in 2015,
London and Rio Olympics in 2016 and last year he won in Monza in
2:00:25 under special conditions and Berlin in 2:03:32, missing
the Dennis Kimetto world record (2:02:57) by just 35 seconds.
Kipchoge produced an
incredible upset at the 2003 IAAF World Championships, when at
the age of 18 he won the 5,000 meters gold medal in Paris,
defeating two legends, Kenenisa Bekele and Hicham el Guerrouj.
“I can say we
enjoyed the race. I promised a beautiful race and it was,” he
marathoner Lornah Kiplagat congratulated Kenya on its
performance saying it was the best so far.
“Despite the tough
competition, they remained steady and focused,” she said.
Patrick Sang was also grateful in the win. “I am the silent man
behind the scenes,” he said.