All alone - Emmanuel Mutai dominates and dazzles with a 2:04:40 race record in London (© Getty Images)
As the scene of the past five men’s world records, it’s no surprise that once again some of the world’s best runners will be taking part in the BMW Berlin Marathon, an IAAF Gold Label Road Race, on 28 September.
Kenya’s Dennis Kimetto, the third-fastest marathon runner in history, leads the men’s field. Last year the 30-year-old won the Tokyo and Chicago marathons, setting course records in both with respective marks of 2:06:50 and 2:03:45, the latter a personal best.
Compatriot Emmanuel Mutai, who finished just seven seconds behind Kimetto in Chicago last year, is also in the field. The 29-year-old took the silver medal at the 2009 IAAF World Championships and in 2011 he won the London Marathon en route to taking the World Marathon Majors title.
Ethiopia’s Tsegaye Kebede is one of the most consistent marathon runners of his generation. A world and Olympic bronze medallist with a PB of 2:04:38, the 27-year-old has finished in the top three in 14 of his 17 career marathons. His previous marathon wins include Chicago, Fukuoka and London.
World half marathon champion Geoffrey Kamworor has finished third in Berlin for the past two years. The 21-year-old Kenyan will want to do better than that this year, as well as improve on his PB of 2:06:12.
Ethiopia’s Feyse Tadese, winner of the 2013 Paris Marathon, leads the women’s field. The 2012 world half marathon silver medallist has a PB of 2:21:06, which she came close to earlier this year when finishing fourth in London with 2:21:42.
Compatriot Tirfi Tsegaye is just a fraction slower, with a PB of 2:21:19 set when finishing second in Berlin two years ago. Since then, she has gone on to win in Dubai and Tokyo against competitive fields.
USA’s 2008 Olympic 10,000m bronze medallist Shalane Flanagan will be contesting just her second marathon on European soil. The multiple US record-holder on the track clocked 2:22:02 in Boston earlier this year, so will be looking to match that kind of performance on Berlin’s record-eligible course.
Japan’s world bronze medallist Kayoko Fukushi will be looking to achieve her first marathon victory. The 32-year-old has a personal best of 2:24:21, set when finishing second in Osaka last year.
Organisers for the IAAF