Defending champion, Priscah Jeptoo of Kenya will be hard pressed to defend the London Marathon diadem she won in 2013. In 2014, she will have to contend with reigning world champion and fellow Kenyan Edna Kiplagat, defending Olympic champion and Olympic record holder Tiki Gelana of Ethiopia. Also making her marathon debut will be legendary Ethiopian 10,000m runner Tirunesh Dibaba.
Jeptoo had a superb 2013
Last year Jeptoo had a marvellous season in which she also won the New York marathon with an amazing comeback that saw her make up a 3 minute deficit. She also won the BUPA half marathon, beating Ethiopian legends, Tirunesh Dibaba and Meseret Defar in commanding fashion.
She hopes to beat her personal record: “I ran my personal best time last year and I won the race. But the main challenge for me now is to successfully defend the title and if it comes with another fastest time, it will be a bonus”.
The 2014 London Marathon men’s field
The 2014 London marathon will be Mo Farah’s opportunity to prove he can really run with the big boys. He has dominated the Olympic and World championships over the 5000m and 10,000m but he has been running against a watered down field since the best distance runners have all switched to the road races.
Farah will have to contend with a strong field that includes Kenya’s Wilson Kipsang, the marathon world record-holder, Ugandan world and Olympic champion Stephen Kiprotich, defending London Marathon champion Tsegaye Kebede, of Ethiopia, and Kenyan Emmanuel Mutai, the London course record-holder.
To make matters more interesting, the London race will also see the marathon debut of Ethiopian Ibrahim Jeilan, who deprived Farah of the world 10,000m gold in a thrilling sprint finish in Daegu in 2011.
And do not sleep on Martin Irungu Mathathi who will also be running. The Japan based Mathathi won the bronze medal in the 2007 world championships in the 10,000m, won the Fukuoka marathon in 2013 and has a personal best of 2:07:16. He also won the BUPA half marathon in an incredible time of 58:56 in 2011.
Kenya’s Athletics Page