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Kosgei takes London, defending champ Cheruiyot second

American Emily Sisson finished sixth in the second-fastest marathon debut in US history

We knew the women’s race at the Virgin Money London Marathon would be an exciting one today, and we weren’t disappointed. The top five women all finished in a blistering sub-2:21. A year ago, Brigid Kosgei, 25, of Kenya finished second to her compatriot Vivian Cheruiyot here in London, but today it was Kosgei taking a decisive victory in a new personal best of 2:18:20. (Kosgei also won the Bank of America Chicago Marathon in 2018.) Cheruiyot was almost two minutes back for second place, in 2:20:14. The race for third was won by 21-year-old Roza Dereje of Ethiopia in 2:20:51.

RELATED: London 2019: the deepest women’s field in marathon history

Three-time Berlin Marathon winner Gladys Cherono was fourth in 2:20:52, and three-time London winner and women-only world record-holder Mary Keitany had to settle for fifth today (2:20:58).

Finishing sixth was American Emily Sisson in her marathon debut, in 2:23:08. It was the second-fastest debut marathon by an American woman after Jordan Hasay’s performance at the 2017 Boston Marathon. Her training partner, Molly Huddle, finished 12th but managed a PB despite having a difficult race (she finished in 2:26:33).

Sinead Diver, the 40-year-old runner who lives in Australia and has dual Irish-Australian citizenship, went out aggressively, opening up a gap of 80 to 100 metres between herself and the chase pack in the early miles. Diver finished seventh, in 2:24:11 (which, as Natasha Wodak pointed out in a tweet later, beats the Canadian marathon record by almost three minutes). Diver set the world record in the W40 women’s half-marathon earlier this year in Japan.

Molly Huddle of the US finished 12th in a small personal best.

Here are the top 10:

    1. Brigid Kosgei KEN 2:18:20
    2. Vivian Cheruiyot KEN 2:20:14
    3. Roza Dereje ETH 2:20:51
    4. Gladys Cherono KEN 2:20:52
    5. Mary Keitany KEN 2:20:48
    6. Emily Sisson US 2:23:08
    7. Sinead Diver AUS 2:24:11
    8. Carla Salome Rocha POR 2:24:47
    9. Birhane Dibaba ETH 2:25:04
    10. Charlotte Purdue GB 2:25:38

In the wheelchair division, Swiss athlete Manuela Schär won a decisive victory in 1:44:09 over the American, Tatyana McFadden, who finished second more than four minutes later, in 1:49:42. Madison di Rozario of Australia was third, in 1:49:44. This repeats the finishing order from the Boston Marathon two weeks ago.

Schär has swept the Abbott World Major Marathons, and was visibly emotional at the finish line. She was in a car accident in December, which may have impacted her training but certainly does not seem to have impacted her results.

Full results are available here.

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