The new World Marathon record holder Patrick Makau says he’s satisfied with his season that winning the World Marathon Majors title “will just be a bonus” to him.
Makau moved to the top of the WMM standings with 60 points after he shattered Haile Gebrselassie’s 2008 World record by 21 seconds with a new time of 2:03:38 at Berlin Marathon on Sunday.
The victory saw Makau haul 25 points, adding to the 15 he picked up when he finished third in London in April. By the time he was running in Berlin, he had 35 points.
The 26-year-old relegated London Marathon champion Emmanuel Mutai to second place with 55 points as Ethiopian Tsegaye Kebede dropped third with 41, one better than Boston Marathon champion, Geoffrey Mutai.
“My aim in Berlin was to break the world record and then target the Olympic Games. The rest, like winning the WMM, will come as a bonus to me,” said Makau. “There is still Chicago Marathon and New York City Marathon to go and anything can happen since Emmanuel is in contention with only five points separating us.”
At stake is $1 million (about Sh100 million) prize purse to be equally shared between the top male and female marathoners in the world.
Clean sweep in Berlin
Unlike last year when he battled cold and rain to win in Berlin, Makau cashed in on the good weather on Sunday not only to break the world record but lead a Kenyan sweep of the first four places. Stephen Kwelio (2:07:55), Emmanuel Kimaiyo (2:09:50) and Felix Lim (2:10:38) romped home in that order to collect 15, 10 and five points respectively towards the WMM.
At the London Marathon, Makau crossed the line in his fourth marathon in 2:05:45, his fourth time at 2:06:14 or faster.
He had a bad fall earlier in the race and just got out-kicked by previous three-time winner Martin Lel.
Emmanuel Mutai was to triumph in London with a personal best 2:04:40 to lead the WMM series before Makau struck.
Geoffrey Mutai ran the fastest marathon in history with his sensational 2:03:02 victory at Boston Marathon but it wasn’t ratified as a world record because of the downhill course.
Kenyan men have asserted their prowess in the long distance races to win the previous four WMM series and by the look of things, they are likely to win again with Makau firmly on the lead.