Today Is The 2009 Berlin Marathon

The following article was copied from The famous Berlin Marathon is being  held today, 20 September 2009. This Marathon Race is considered as one of Marathon Races included in the World’s 4 Grand Slam Marathon Races. 
This is where Haile Gebrselaissie got the world’s record finish time for the Marathon Race in 2:03:59 hours.

Check on the website of the Berlin Marathon for the LIVE Update at                 

Gebrselassie Versus Kibet – The Fastest Marathon Duel Ever?
No one could have imagined that the BERLIN-MARATHON would become one of the
most spectacular sports events in Germany when the race was started for the
first time 35 years ago. That happened next to the Grunewald, a forest in
West Berlin, and there were only few spectators. Today the real,-
BERLIN-MARATHON attracts around one million people who celebrate one of the
greatest running events on the globe. It was almost 20 years ago – after
the fall of the Berlin Wall in November 1989 – when the race got a huge
boost. Leading through both parts of the German capital from 1990 onwards
the real,- BERLIN-MARATHON became famous for superfast winning times, great
crowd support and growing fields. This Sunday we could well see another
thrilling race: defending champion and world record holder Haile
Gebrselassie (Ehtiopia) will be up against Kenya’s Duncan Kibet, who leads
the current world season’s list.
A record number of 40,923 runners from 122 nations have entered the 36th
edition of the real,- BERLIN-MARATHON. Since the race belongs to the World
Marathons Majors (WMM) even more people want to take part. A year ago
35,783 runners finished the real,- BERLIN-MARATHON. That was the highest
number ever in the history of the event and the 2008 event became the
seventh biggest marathon ever seen. In 2006 Race Directors of the
prestigious marathons in Boston, London, Berlin, Chicago and New York had
formed the WMM.

Gebrselassie targets his own record once again

So far five runners have established personal bests of sub 2:05 at the
classical distance. Two of them will run in Sunday’s real,-
BERLIN-MARATHON. While Haile Gebrselassie had improved his global record in
Berlin in 2008 to 2:03:59 Kenya’s Duncan Kibet had run 2:04:27 earlier this
year and has moved up to number two on the alltime list.

Haile Gebrselassie’s goal is obvious: He intends to break his world record
again. If he succeeds it will be the third time in a row that he would
establish a new world best at the real,- BERLIN-MARATHON. So far the 36
year-old has broken an amazing 26 world records during his career.
Gebrselassie thinks that he can at least slice off another 30 seconds from
his present marathon record. “If everything fits together perfectly then
may be even 2:02:59 would be possible,” says the Ethiopian, who is going
for a record fourth consecutive victory at the real,- BERLIN-MARATHON.

But Sunday’s marathon could well be the toughest for Haile Gebrselassie in
Berlin. In a recent interview Kenya’s star runner Paul Tergat named four
fellow countrymen who he thinks may be able to break Gebrselassie’s world
record: Olympic Champion Sammy Wanjiru, Martin Lel, James Kwambai and –
Duncan Kibet.

For more than two years Haile Gebrselassie has not competed against an
athlete as strong as Duncan Kibet in the marathon. This could well become a
fascinating duel. “I feel honoured to be able to run against Haile
Gebrselassie,” said Duncan Kibet during Thursday’s press conference in
Berlin. My training went very well and I think it is a very good sign that
my training partner James Kwambai ran 59:09 minutes last Sunday at the
Rotterdam Half Marathon.” Duncan Kibet did not want to comment on a
possible world record attack, but said that he intends to break his
personal best. For this he must of course run in the region of the world
record. “After Rotterdam I though that I might be able to run even faster
in Berlin. So this is why I decided to go for this race.”

Looking ahead to a duel with Haile Gebrselassie the Kenyan record holder
said: “I don’t know about Haile’s training. And he does not know about my
training. So we will have to wait and see how it develops. But I will try
to run his pace.”

There will be two more Kenyans and one Ethiopian with high-class personal
bests in the race. Francis Kiprop came fourth at the Seoul Marathon in 2008
with 2:08:30 and Mariko Kiplagat (all Kenya) placed fourth at last year’s
real,- BERLIN-MARATHON in 2:09:04. Ethiopia’s Eshetu Wondimu was able to
improve to 2:08:41 despite bad weather conditions in this year’s Dubai
Marathon. The strongest non-African runner could be Atsushi Fujita (Japan)
who has a personal best of 2:06:51. This however is already nine years old.

Ethiopian favourites in the women’s race

Askale Tafa Magarsa will be the favourite in the women’s race on Sunday. A
year ago the 24 year-old Ethiopian finished second behind Irina Mikitenko
(Germany), clocking a great personal best of 2:21:31. With that she
remained the second fastest woman worldwide in 2008. Now Askale Tafa
Magarsa returns to the real,- BERLIN-MARATHON and will be eager to further
improve. She may well be able to establish a world season’s best, which
currently stands at 2:22:11. Irina Mikitenko clocked this time when winning
in London in April. Askale Tafa Magarsa’s strongest rival probably will be
a fellow Ethiopian: Atsede Habtamu clocked 2:25:17 in torrential rain in
January’s Dubai Marathon, where she took second place.

Genet Getaneh will also be in with a chance on Sunday. The 23-year-old
Ethiopian finished fifth in 2:26:37 at the Dubai Marathon this year. The
strongest Kenyan should be Leah Malot. She has a very good long distance
track record and improved to 2:30:29 at the Paris Marathon this April.

3 thoughts on “Today Is The 2009 Berlin Marathon

  1. greencursor

    Gebrselassie is really one hell of a runner. he is really bent on breaking his record again. i saw that he has several pacers with him. good luck to him.

    btw, thanks for the cheers this morning @ the rotarun. i really needed that for the last push to the finish. i did not stay long though as i still have to attend to my child’s family day at school. did you measure the distance on your garmin? there were no kilometer markers along the route. the only sign i saw was the last 400 meters.


  2. runnerforchrist

    Haile was not able to break his own WR but he won again this one. It’ nice seeing you once again after the Milo 42k Elims and I’m so delighted as you cheered for me in the last 50m of that race. So glad that you introduced me to Adi delos Reyes but can’t stay too long because my companions were waiting for me…
    Congrats to Team Baldrunner for winning majority of the awards.

    God bless.


    1. kingofpots

      thanks, ronnie! ultrarunners have special bonding with one another. we are different breed of warriors and we must help each other. it is nice to be meeting each other for brief chat. good luck and see you again in the coming races!


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