On Thursday morning it’s the turn of the elite men’s field in the press conference. Wilson Kipsang, Dennis Kimetto, Stanley Biwott, Eliud Kipchoge, Emmanuel Mutai, Geoffrey Mutai all from Kenya were on stage, and we were there to catch what they had to say.
Between them, these six men have an average Marathon time of 2.03.48, and it’s expected that the half way time will be 61.45 leading to a fast race. First up was Dennis Kimetto and Wilson Kipsang. Sunday will be the first time that they’ve run the London Marathon together.
Kipsang holds the course record in London and will be defending his position as the reigning champion on Sunday.
For me, with this kind of field, you find that it’s going to be a fast race. My main aim is not the world record, but retaining the title and running a good time. I’m very confident
Kipsang was asked, with such a strong field, is there anyone who’s missing from the race who should be here? His answer was simply “No, this is enough.”
Dennis Kimetto was the first man to break the 2.03 barrier in Berlin last September, and is the current world record at marathon distance. Asked if the Rio Olympics were his target or the World Championships he said “My plan is I need to finish this, and then see what the next weeks deliver”
Stanley Biwott, who finished 2nd last year at the Virgin Money London Marathon is feeling strong for Sunday
I think this time I have trained well, this time I think I’m in my best shape, I think I’ll run good on Sunday
Eliud Kipchoge was asked about his transition from the track up to Marathon distance and said it had gone well. Sunday will be his first London Marathon, however last year he won both Chicago and Rotterdam.
I used to run to school 5k, back for lunch, then back to school, and home again. 20k per day at the age of 9. It’s normal in Africa that we just run to school, it’s normal for us.
Emamanuel Mutai took the title at the 2011 Virgin Money London Marathon with a course record and new personal best time of 2:04:407, and in Berlin last year achieved his personal best. When asked what it would mean to win on Sunday, he said:
For me I see Sunday as a very tough game, where the field is so strong, maybe I would love to see how fast I am going to be, with that pace I’m comfortable.