Florence Kiplagat out to conquer Tokyo Marathon

Thursday February 28 2019

Former Chicago Marathon champion Florence Kiplagat speaks to journalists at Eldoret International Airport on February 26, 2019 before jetting out of the country to compete in Tokyo Marathon on March 3, 2019. PHOTO| JARED NYATAYA |


Former Chicago Marathon champion Florence Kiplagat wants to reclaim her authority when she lines up for the Tokyo Marathon on Sunday.

Kiplagat says that the race is part of her build up for the 2020 Olympics Games to be held in Tokyo as she eyes a slot in the marathon team next year.

“I really want to see what happens in Olympics Games and I will be working hard in the remaining months so that I can get selected to represent my country next year. That’s a medal I would love to see in my drawer after my retirement,” said the Iten-based athlete.

Kiplagat a former World Half Marathon record holder is optimistic that she will do well and be on the podium after the race.

She failed to reclaim Chicago Marathon in 2018 after a lengthy spell on the sidelines nursing an injury she picked up at the same race the previous. She attributed her fourth place finish in Chicago due to fluctuating temperatures that she struggled to adapt to. She finished

Kiplagat will also be making her Tokyo Marathon debut and she is excited at the thought of attempting to lower the course record.


“It’s my first time in Tokyo where I understand it’s quite cold now and my target is to go and run well and be in the podium. Marathon is a tough race but I believe I have done enough training.”

The athlete said she won’t be looking at the line up for the race because she believes on her build up for the race and doesn’t fear anyone.

“42km race is not a joke and one has to start early preparations which I have been doing and I’m not looking who is competing with me. I normally believe I’m the best and I will be eyeing victory on Sunday.”

Kiplagat has participated in London Marathons six times (2013,2014,2015,2016,2017 and 2018), Berlin Marathon two times (2011 and 2013) and Chicago Marathon four times (2014,2015,2016 and 2017).

She will be competing with her compatriots Gold Coast Marathon champion Ruth Chebitok and Joan Chelimo who is debuting in the race.

It will be interesting to see how Kiplagat will tackle the strong team from Ethiopia which comprises of Aga Ruti, Feyse Tadese, Yebrgual Melese, Belete Mimi and Bahrain’s World marathon champion Rose Chelimo.