Kipsang: Pace setters let me down

Tuesday April 15 2014

London marathon winners Kenyan's Edna Kiplagat (L) and Wilson Kipsang (R) pose for photographers in front of Tower Bridge in London on April 14, 2014. Wilson Kipsang said on Tuesday he would have broken his own World record if he had better pace setters at the London Marathon on Sunday. PHOTO/AFP

London marathon winners Kenyan's Edna Kiplagat (L) and Wilson Kipsang (R) pose for photographers in front of Tower Bridge in London on April 14, 2014. Wilson Kipsang said on Tuesday he would have broken his own World record if he had better pace setters at the London Marathon on Sunday. PHOTO/AFP 

By AYUMBA AYODI
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Wilson Kipsang said on Tuesday he would have broken his own World record if he had better pace setters at the London Marathon on Sunday.

Kipsang said he decided to hit the front after the three pace setters that included legendary Haile Gebrsellasie failed to keep up with the high pace, falling back with just 15km into the race.

Kipsang, who holds a World Record of 2:03:23, conjured a Course Record with new times of 2:04:29 hence shaving off Emmanuel Mutai’s previous  record of 2:04:40 (2011 London)  by 11 seconds.

“I was eyeing a course record with the possibility of improving my own World record but the pace setting wasn’t good,” said Kipsang, who also won the race in 2012 in 2:04:44.

The 32-year-old from Elgeyo Marakwet had seven months ago claimed the World record with victory in a time of 2:03:23 at Berlin Marathon.

SURPRISE CHARGE

Kipsang had to shrug off a surprise charge from 2012 Paris Marathon champion Stanley Biwott in the last mile of the race to cross the line 26 seconds clear in 2:04:29, while Edna Kiplagat won a duel in the sun against her namesake Florence Kiplagat to win by three seconds in 2:20:21.

“The weather was good for a World record - warm and conducive - unlike the previous race,” Kipsang’ said.

“The pace setters dropped too early with only one remaining after the first 15km.”

Kipsang was speaking at the Jomo Kenyatta International Airport upon arrival from London. He was accompanied by Florence.

Edna opted to stay in London while Priscah Jeptoo, who failed to defend her title, had to seek medical attention in Europe after sustaining an injury in the race.

Gebrsellasie, Richard Sigei and Edwin Kiptoo led the pace through 5km and 10kms before Sigei was left alone after the 15km mark with Kipsang taking over at 20km. Sigei briefing came to the front at the half-way point before he faded away.

“The pace setters were too weak for our high pace as they let me control the race with 12 km to go,” Kipsang said. “I had to take the risk as I went down to run my race, easy and comf