The 2020 London Marathon will see one of the most competitive women’s lineups in history. With five of the 10 fastest women of all time and six women with personal bests under 2:20, the race could see the fastest women’s finish ever.
Here are the elite women announced for the 2020 London Marathon (April 26).
Five sub-2:19 women, including #1 and #4 all-time.
Reigning champs of London & Chicago (Kosgei), Worlds & Dubai (Chepngetich), NYC (Jepkosgei), and Berlin (Bekere).
Also: no Mary Keitany. pic.twitter.com/6Vpwnt39zl
— Jonathan Gault (@jgault13) January 13, 2020
The headliner is Brigid Kosgei, the world record-holder and reigning Chicago champion. The Kenyan ran the women’s marathon world record of 2:14:04 in Chicago last year. Other than her pacers, the runner was completely alone for almost the entire marathon. She shattered Paula Radcliffe’s 16-year-old world record of 2:15:25, which many considered to be nearly unbeatable and one of the toughest records in the books.
Joyciline Jepkosgei, the half-marathon world record-holder, is also in the field. Her 1:04:51 half-marathon record from 2017 was challenged by Kosgei in 2019, but wasn’t ratified due to the point-to-point Great North Run course.
Here's a list of the ten fastest women of all time…
B. Kosgei ✅
R. Chepngetich ✅
G. Cherono ✅
R. Dereje ✅
V. Cheruiyot ✅
— Virgin Money London Marathon (@LondonMarathon) January 13, 2020
Another runner to watch is masters marathoner Sinead Diver. The Irish-born runner now competes for Australia, where she lives and trains. She’s a member of the Melbourne Track Club and training partner to Canadian World Championship 5,000m finalist Andrea Seccafien.
The advantage to choosing London as a spring marathon for elite runners is the 13 week timeline to the Olympics. Because there are over three months between the two events (late April to early August), runners have time to build again and perform well at the Games.
The complete women’s elite list
Brigid Kosgei – 2:14.04
Ruth Chepngetich – 2:17.08
Gladys Cherono – 2:18.11
Roza Dereje – 2:18.30
Vivian Cheruiyot – 2:18.31
Degitu Azimeraw – 2:19.26
Ashete Bekere – 2:20.14
Alemu Megertu – 2:21:10
Joyciline Jepkosgei – 2:22.38
Sinead Diver – 2:24.11
Carla Salome Rocha – 2:24.47