Kenya Poised To Dominate Olympic Marathon
The East African nation has 278 male runners with the Olympic 'A' standard.
The East African nation has 278 male runners with the Olympic ‘A’ standard.
Until the late Sammy Wanjiru won the gold medal in the marathon at the 2008 Olympics in Beijing, no Kenyan male had ever won the 26.2-mile race at the Games.
Kenya’s prime minister, Raila Odinga, once called Wanjiru “one of our sure bets for gold,” in London. He went on to say that Wanjiru’s untimely death was “therefore a big blow to our dreams.”
But now that Kenya has an amazing 278 men and 61 women who have bettered the IAAF ‘A’ Standard in the marathon, these fears are no longer with the East African nation’s athletics officials.
In fact, the top-20 times in the world last year were run by Kenyans. Included in these times is Patrick Makau’s world record in Berlin (2:03:38), as well as Geoffrey Mutai’s blistering Boston win (2:03:02), which didn’t count for record purposes.
However, Ethiopia will not make it easy for Kenya to take home the gold once again. Kenya’s neighbor to the north possesses eight of the top-12 times in the marathon this year.
For More: The Telegraph