Athletics. On the same day that the London Marathon will take place, Kiprotich says he was advised to run the Hamburg Marathon due today by his training partner and reigning Olympic champion Eliud Kipchoge of Kenya
Stephen Kiprotich is widely credited for having revamped marathon running in Uganda after clinching the 2012 Olympic and 2013 World titles.
The cast has grown to Jackson Kiprop, Solomon Mutai, Abraham Kiplimo, Phillip Kiplimo, Alex Chesakit and lately Moses Kibet.
However, Kiprotich’s ambition to become the third man to retain the Olympic marathon title fell apart when he lost his crown on the streets of Sambódromo in Brazil last August.
The Ugandan runner withered in wet conditions with a worst career finish when he placed a distant 14th as his training partner Kenyan Eluid Kipchoge scooped gold.
“The rain in Brazil was terrible,” Kiprotich recalls. “We had trained in hot conditions but we faced rain on race day.”
Kiprotich, 17th in the senior men’s 10km race at the World Cross-Country in Kololo last month, wants to bury the Rio memories when he lines up at the Hamburg Marathon in Germany this morning.
“I am ready,” he said before stating his target. “I would like to try lower the National Record (NR). My body has got enough endurance and my speed has greatly improved.”
Kiprotich first rewrote the NR when he won the 2011 Enschede Marathon in a course record time of 2:07:20. He lowered it further when he came second in 2:06:33 at the 2015 Tokyo Marathon.
“I want to go below 2:06.00 and I think it is possible,” added the race favourite. Kiprotich is up against an elite field that includes Ethiopian trio Tsegaye Mekonnen, 2013 London Marathon winner Tsegaye Kebede and Tadese Tola.
Winner at the 2014 Dubai Marathon, Mekonnen has the best personal best time (PB) of 2:04:32 in the field.
2017 HAMBURG MARATHON
UGANDAN IN ACTION: S. Kiprotich
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