LONDON – Kenya’s Joyciline Jepkosgei won a thrilling London marathon on Sunday in two hours, 17 minutes and 43 seconds when world record holder and defending champion Brigid Kosgei faded late in the race to finish outside the podium.
Sisay Lemma of Ethiopia was a comfortable winner of the elite men’s race in a time of 2:04.01 and was 27 seconds ahead of Kenyan Vincent Kipchuma with Ethiopian Mosinet Geremew in third.
Jepkosgei, the reigning New York Marathon champion, broke her personal best of 2:18.40 on her debut in the British capital to become the seventh fastest woman in history.
The 28-year-old finished 15 seconds ahead of Ethiopian Degitu Azimeraw whose compatriot Ashete Bekere finished third.
Kosgei, who competed eight weeks after taking silver at the Tokyo Games, was aiming for a third consecutive victory in London. The 27-year-old rallied briefly, but finished fourth in 02:18.40.
The marathon, which celebrated its 40th anniversary in April, returned to its traditional Blackheath to The Mall route for the first time in over two years.
More than 36,000 attendees joined some of the world’s top participants in the mass attendance event, and up to 40,000 took part virtually, organizers said.
Last year only elite races took place on a course around St James’s Park, with amateurs last competing in 2019.
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