Eliud Kipchoge destroys marathon world record in 2:01:39

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For a man that has been so superior to his contemporaries over the last few years in the marathon- he had won eight straight entering Sunday, and nine if you count the Breaking 2 event- Kipchoge wasn't afraid of setting a seemingly impossible pace.

After the race, Kipchoge, who also won in 2016 and 2017, said: "I lack words to describe this day".

Ahead of the race, Kipchoge was more reserved about his expectations and told reporters that he was simply aiming to lower his personal best of 2:03:05.

Dubbed the greatest marathon runner of the modern era, Kipchoge produced a fantastic race in the German capital to finally eclipse the one major running accomplishment that had eluded him in his illustrious career.

Fellow Kenyan Amos Kipruto came second in 2 hours, 6 minutes and 23 seconds, followed by a third Kenyan, former world-record holder Wilson Kipsang, who was 25 seconds behind.

Kipchoge came agonizingly close to sporting immortality by almost running the first sub two-hour marathon previous year.

Kipchoge, 33, broke the previous world record by more than one minute, an improvement not seen in five decades, the Berlin Marathon said.

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The women's victor was Kenya's Gladys Cherono, who set a women's record for the Berlin race with a time of 2:18:11.

Race organizers initially timed Kipchoge a second slower but later corrected the time. With already half a marathon behind him, the Kenyan nevertheless managed to run an incredibly quick time.

Top put Kipchoge's new time into context, the last time the marathon world record was beaten by over 30 seconds was when Paul Tergat lowered Khalid Khannouchi's mark to 2:04:26.

The final pacemaker, Josphat Boit, led Kipchoge through the half-way point in 1:01:06 before dropping out at 25 kilometres, which was covered in 1:12:24.

"It was hard", Kipchoge added.

His split of 14:21 between the 25km and 30km mark was the fastest ever recorded in a Marathon, breaking his own previous mark set at the London Marathon in 2016 where he came close to breaking the record having covered the same distance in 1:27:13.

He has been virtually unbeatable at the distance, winning 10 of 11 marathons he has entered.