Kenya’s Mary Keitany will attempt to break Paula Radcliffe’s world record at the 2018 Virgin Money London Marathon on Sunday 22 April. Just as Radcliffe did when she set the world record at the 2003 London Marathon, Keitany will be running with male pacemakers in her bid to run inside the Briton’s iconic mark of 2:15:25.
The 36-year-old Kenyan is already the holder of the women-only marathon world record that she set by winning last year’s Virgin Money London Marathon in 2:17:01. In the process Keitany beat Radcliffe’s women-only world best of 2:17:42 and now the Kenyan wants to rewrite the record book again.
During her win last year, Keitany went through the halfway point more than a minute faster than Radcliffe did on the way to her record in 2003. However, her pacemaker fell away soon after and Keitany found herself alone and falling off that searing pace.
Keitany, the three-time London Marathon champion, said: “The marathon world record is something that I have been working towards for several years and I feel I am now in the position where I can really attack the time of 2:15:25.
“At last year’s Virgin Money London Marathon, I was feeling good but it was hard to run nearly half the race on my own. By having male pacemakers, I will be able to have the support throughout the race.
“Obviously, any world record is contingent on everything being right on the day. London has shown it has the course for world records to be broken and I hope my form and health stay strong and that the weather is kind on the day.
“I know the record was set by Paula Radcliffe on this course in 2003 and that she is a very popular person in Great Britain but I really hope the London crowds get behind my challenge and can help drive me on to achieve something incredible.”