This year’s BMW Berlin Marathon promises an exciting race. The forecast high is 23 C, though it’s more likely to be in the low teens at the start time. Here’s a preview of who we’ll be watching on game day.
The race is Sunday, September 16, starting at 9:15 a.m. local time (3:15 a.m. EDT, 6:15 Pacific). CBC.ca/sports will carry the event live starting at 2:30 a.m. EDT. FloTrack will also stream the event in a number of countries, not including Canada or the U.S.
Defending and Olympic champion Eliud Kipchoge, 33, will be gunning for a personal best, which would be very close to Dennis Kimetto‘s world record (2:02:57, set here in 2014), against former world record-holder and fellow Kenyan Wilson Kipsang, 36.
Here’s a partial history of the rivalry between Kipchoge and Kipsang:
2013: Kipsang wins Berlin, sets world record (2:03:23), beats Kipchoge
2014: Dennis Kimetto wins Berlin, sets new world record (2:02:57)
2015: Kipchoge wins Berlin in 2:04
2016: Kipchoge wins London, sets PB of 2:03:05, only eight seconds off the world record; Kipsang wins Berlin, sets PB of 2:03:13
2017: Kipchoge wins Berlin, Kipsang drops out in challenging, wet conditions
Not to be discounted is Zersenay Tadese of Eritrea, who has held the world half-marathon title five times, and has held the world record in the distance since 2010.
In the women’s race, we have defending champion Gladys Cherono facing Tirunesh Dibaba, who is running Berlin for the first time, and Edna Kiplagat, who, assuming she finishes, will become the first able-bodied elite woman to finish all of the six world majors (Berlin, Tokyo, Chicago, New York, London and Boston).
If conditions merit and the weather is cool, the women could be after Paula Radcliffe’s 2002 world record (2:15:25).
A number of elite Canadian women will also be in the race: watch for Sasha Gollish, Lyndsay Tessier, Rachel Hannah, Catherine Watkins and Rachel Cliff, with Gollish and Cliff, highly accomplished veterans at other distances, racing their first marathons at Berlin this year.
Once again, the race is Sunday, September 16, starting at 3:15 a.m. EDT (12:15 a.m. Pacific). CBC.ca/sports will carry the event live starting at 2:30 a.m. EDT. FloTrack will also stream the event in a number of countries, not including Canada or the U.S.