Geoffrey Mutai lived up to his billing as favourite for Berlin marathon by winning the race in 2:04:15, but was unable to set a new world record, finishing more than half a minute off compatriot Patrick Makau's time of 2:03:38 set in the German capital last year. Kenyan Mutai ran the fastest marathon in Boston last year by completing the race in 2:03:02 but the time was not recognised because the course is point-to-point.
More than one million spectators turned up to watch the Berlin race on a sunny and warm autumn morning. Many had speculated Mutai would break the world record on one of the fastest and flattest marathon courses in the world. The 30-year-old was shoulder to shoulder with compatriot Dennis Kimetto, who was running his first competitive marathon, for much of the race. Both runners appeared to have no energy left in the final stretch as they headed down Unter den Linden towards the finish line past the Brandenburg Gate but Mutai hung on for the win. Fellow Kenyan, Geoffrey Kipsang, was the next man to complete the course, finishing in 2:06:12.
Mutai's victory means he now has an unassailable lead in the 2011-12 world marathon majors series. He said after the race: ""I had the chance to break the world record but after 35km, I had stomach cramps and I decided to maintain the pace. I thank God for winning this race."
21-year-old Kimmetto registered the fastest ever marathon debut and said: "I was not expecting to finish close to him since I knew I could not beat him but I'm delighted with today's performance and in future, I will compete for the world record."
The women's race was also won by the favourite, Aberu Kebede. The Ethiopian recorded a lifetime best of 2:20:34, although it wasn't enough to threaten Naoko Takahashi's time of 2:19:46 set at the race in 2002. Kebede's training partner, Tirfi Tsegaye, finished second (2:21:). Spurred on by home support, Jan Fitschen was the first German past the finishline in 2:13:10, with Phil Anthony the fastest Brit (2:18:08) and Sonia Samuels fastest British woman (2:30:56).
For a full list of results visit our race listings page.