StoryCast ’21: Eliud Kipchoge – the marathon runner who got down to defy the world of science

By Tom Gillespie, information reporter

In Vienna, in October 2019, Kenyan distance runner Eliud Kipchoge got down to turn into the primary particular person to run a marathon in beneath two hours – a problem deemed to be not possible by many consultants and figures on the earth of science.

Kipchoge has shared the story of his file try in Marathon Man – the third episode of StoryCast ’21, a Sky News podcast sequence telling 21 extraordinary private tales from a few of the largest information occasions of the century.

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Eliud Kipchoge is a rock star of working.

Born in Kenya in 1984, he began out from the humblest of beginnings and would run to and from college every morning.

In the night he was out working as soon as extra as he offered dairy milk to become profitable for his household.

Kipchoge cherished to run and he grew up realizing he wished to encourage others.

There was no higher means to try this than by ending a 26-mile marathon in beneath two hours – identified broadly as “the last great barrier of running”.

Image:
Eliud Kipchoge celebrates after successful the London Marathon in 2019

Scientists had been observing working information for many years and believed it will be one other 50 years, if ever, earlier than they’d see a human being cross the road in such a time.

Kipchoge did not share their data-inspired scepticism.

Sharing the story of his record-attempt in Marathon Man, he stated: “I don’t believe in limitations. I always say no human is limited… if a human being can set a goal, believe, and work on it, they can achieve it.”

In October 2019, Kipchoge was already regarded by many as being the best marathon runner of all time – having received 11 of the 12 marathons he had entered throughout his working profession.

Eliud Kipchoge, centre, set a record time when he won the Berlin marathon in 2018
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Eliud Kipchoge, centre, set a file time when he received the Berlin marathon in 2018

This contains the Rio 2016 Olympic Games marathon and 4 London marathons. Kipchoge additionally holds the marathon world file for a run throughout competitors – having set a time of two:01:39 on the 2018 Berlin marathon.

However, to run a marathon in beneath two hours he must push his thoughts and physique to limits he had by no means reached earlier than.

According to Runners World, the typical 5km end time within the UK is 29:08 for males and 38:12 for girls.

To full a marathon in lower than two hours, Kipchoge must run 5km round twice as quick with a time of 14:13 – however he must do it eight occasions in a row.

To put it additional into context, the 10,000km male world information sits at simply over 26.17, however Kipchoge must repeatedly run 28:26.

Kipchoge came close to running a marathon in under two hours in Monza, Italy, in 2017
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Kipchoge got here near working a marathon in beneath two hours in Monza, Italy, in 2017

A 1:59:59 marathon could be equal to working 100m sprints in simply over 17 seconds 422 occasions in a row.

Kipchoge had arrived in Vienna, Austria, in October 2019 with the only real intention of pushing his physique to these extraordinary extremes.

He had come near reaching his aim in 2017 with a time of two:00:25 – however there was nonetheless some approach to go if he was to realize true legendary standing.

Sky News correspondent Enda Brady, a eager marathon runner who idolises Kipchoge, was in Vienna to observe his hero attempting to make historical past.

Enda says throughout Marathon Man: “I had the stress of wondering how am I going to see this race? How am I going to commentate on it? We’re literally by the side of the street like everyone else.

“You go on TV, there’s one thing mistaken with you if you do not get nervous. I keep in mind considering how nervous would you be for those who have been rocking as much as the beginning line to do one thing no human has ever executed earlier than?”

Enda Brady, left, with Eliud Kipchoge in 2018
Image:
Enda Brady, left, with Eliud Kipchoge in 2018

Kipchoge later instructed Marathon Man how time appeared to fly by as he warmed up for the race.

He stated: “Time was going very fast… minutes, it was really going very fast. I was nervous, I was really tense.”

If Kipchoge was in a position to run a marathon in lower than two hours, he would be a part of Roger Bannister in breaching probably the most infamous limitations in distance working.

Bannister, who was born in Harrow, England, turned the primary particular person to run a mile in beneath 4 minutes in 1954.

As Kipchoge stood on the beginning line in Vienna greater than half a century later, he hoped to defy the scientists and obtain what many would regard as working’s “moon-landing moment”.

You can hearken to StoryCast ’21 episode three “Marathon Man” here.

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