Patience Pays For Vivian Cheruiyot In London Marathon

In the early stages of the women’s race at the 2018 London Marathon over the weekend, the elite women broke into three distinct groups. At the front, Mary Keitany and Tirunesh Dibaba were joined by four male pacesetters with the stated goal of breaking the women’s world record of 2:15:25. Behind them were Brigid Kosgei and Gladys Cherono, their objective not as ambitious as that of Dibaba and Keitany, but still aiming to run a historically fast time. 

In the third pack—with four other women—was Vivian Cheruiyot. The 2016 Olympic 5000m champion opted not to chase the world record. The decision to not run with leaders from the outset eventually paid dividends, as Cheruiyot came from behind to win in 2:18:31, making her the fourth-fastest woman of all time in the distance.

After the first 5K, Cheruiyot’s group was 30 seconds behind Keitany, and at 10K the gap was 1:07. By the halfway mark, Cheruiyot had joined the second pack of Cherono and Kosgei but was 1:40 behind Keitany, who had dropped Dibaba and was running world record pace (1:07:16). 

But then the lead started to chip away. 

Cheruiyot and Kosgei cut Keitany’s lead down to 1:32 at the 25K mark. The pacesetters who were guiding Keitany through the early miles were now 10 meters in front of her, urging her to speed up. But after a 5K segment of 16:39, it was clear that the world record was out of the question. A bigger concern was whether Keitany could hold on for the victory. 

The race changed entirely between 30K and 35K. The record chase began to take its toll on Dibaba and Keitany. Dibaba, still in second at the time, began walking and eventually dropped out of the race. Meanwhile, Keitany slowed dramatically, running a 17:33 5K split. 

Cheruiyot moved into second place, just 12 seconds behind Cheruiyot—making up 1:04 from 30K to 35K. 

When the inevitable pass came, Keitany was powerless to respond. Cheruiyot moved into first just after 35K and never showed any signs of vulnerability. She ran from 35K to 40K in 16:20, closing the door on any chance that there would be late-race drama. 

Cheruiyot’s win is her first World Marathon Major victory and adds to an impressive career that has included five global gold medals on the track. 

Kosgei ran 2:20:13 for a second, while Tadelech Bekele of Ethiopia and Cherono ran 2:21:30 and 2:24:10 for third and fourth. Mary Keitany hung in the race and took fifth in 2:24:27. Stephanie Bruce was the top American placing 10th in 2:32:38.  

Weekend Watch Guide: Bowerman Invades Boston

While distance fans across the country gear up for Saturday's U.S. Olympic Marathon Trials in Atlanta, indoor tracks will have plenty of elite competition to whet our collective appetites. From Bowerman TC/Paul Chelimo/Edward Cheserek and more in Boston at the BU Last Chance Meet, plus the Big 10 and MPSF Championships, there's a ton of track to take in from Thursday to Saturday on FloTrack.

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The ascent of the American women’s marathoning that started with almost 20 years ago with Deena Kastor continues on Saturday at the US Olympic Marathon Trials. Whoever makes the team is capable of getting a medal at the Olympics, and medal-worthy athletes will be left off the team. Here’s a breakdown of the top contenders. 

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U.S. Olympic Marathon Trials Men's Preview: Can Rupp Overcome To Win Again?

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The men’s race at the 2020 U.S. Olympic Marathon Trials is top-heavy on paper. Defending champion Galen Rupp exists in a league of his own with an Olympic bronze medal from Rio and a 2:06 personal best buoying his position. Injury struggles and Alberto Salazar’s ban have made a potential victory in Atlanta much less certain, but Rupp seems to have steadied the ship after tuning up with a 61-minute half earlier this month. If he makes it through 26.2 miles on Saturday, there’s a strong chance he will break the tape.

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2020 BU Last Chance Preview: Houlihan, Chelimo, Lomong, Centro & More

The championship portion of the 2020 indoor season has come and gone, but that doesn’t mean the pros are ready to head outdoors just yet. On Thursday and Friday in Boston, the best of Bowerman Track Club and several other top U.S. pros will take to the BU track in pursuit of records and standards at the BU Last Chance Meet. Multiple American records could fall in the final hurrah on the famed Boston surface in 2020.

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With just one weekend left to qualify for the 2020 DI NCAA Indoor Championships a staggering 61 track and field All-Americans from last year have yet to achieve a top-16 mark in 2020.

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Yulimar Rojas Sets Indoor Triple Jump World Record In Madrid

Venezuelan Yulimar Rojas set the women’s indoor triple jump world record on Friday in Madrid with a 15.43m leap. With it, the 24-year-old eclipsed Tatyana Lebedeva’s 15.36m mark that had stood since 2004.

Ababel Yeshaneh, Not Brigid Kosgei, Sets Half Marathon World Record

What was expected to be a coronation of marathon world record holder Brigid Kosgei as the half marathon queen instead turned into an introduction of a worthy counterpart as Ethiopian Ababel Yeshaneh stunned the Kenyan on Friday morning (Thursday night in the U.S.) at the Ras Al Khaimah (RAK) Half Marathon by setting a 64:31 world record.

The 10 Best Performances From The Weekend

Between more Mondo Duplantis' theatrics in Glasgow, a ridiculous road 5k world record in Monaco and plenty of excitement stateside, there was a lot to get excited about this past weekend in track and field.

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Don't Look Now... The NAU Lumberjacks Could Win NCAA Indoors

With just two weeks left to qualify for NCAAs a majority of the top-16 fields are coming into form on the distance side. The NAU men are currently slated to qualify ten entries across three distance events.

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Joshua Cheptegei Smashes Road 5k World Record In 12:51

A little over a month after Rhonex Kipruto took down Joshua Cheptegei’s road 10k world record, the Ugandan has answered back in a big way by running 12:51 on Sunday in Monaco to smash Kipruto’s 5k world record. Cheptegei cut a whopping 27 seconds off the 13:18 that the Kenyan ran on Jan. 12, a run that came en route to Kipruto’s 26:24 10k record.