News21 Aug 2020

Star-studded fields confirmed for 2020 London Marathon


London Marathon winners Eliud Kipchoge and Brigid Kosgei (© AFP / Getty Images)

Organisers of the Virgin Money London Marathon have confirmed the full elite fields for the World Athletics Platinum Label road race on Sunday 4 October.

The elite men’s race – headlined by the greatest marathon runners in history, Eliud Kipchoge and Kenenisa Bekele – will include eight athletes who have run sub 2:05 marathons, including Mosinet Geremew and Mule Wasihun, who were second and third respectively at the 2019 London Marathon.

Sisay Lemma, Tamirat Tola, Marius Kipserem and Shura Kitata are the other men to have run inside 2:05 while former European record-holder Sondre Nordstad Moen is also included.

The elite women’s field is headlined by world record holder Brigid Kosgei. She will face five other women who have run inside 2:20: world champion Ruth Chepngetich, 2018 London Marathon champion Vivian Cheruiyot, 2019 Valencia Marathon champion Roza Dereje, 2019 Frankfurt Marathon winner Valary Jemeli and 2019 Amsterdam Marathon champion Degitu Azimeraw.

Ashete Bekere, the winner of last year’s Berlin Marathon, 2019 Rome Marathon champion Alemu Megertu, USA’s Sara Hall and Australia’s Sinead Diver are also included in a star-studded race.

The news that World Athletics will lift its suspension of the Olympic qualification system for marathon races from 1 September means there will also be a clutch of athletes – paced by four-time Olympic champion Mo Farah – racing with the ambition to achieve the Olympic standard of 2:11:30.

At present only two British athletes other than Farah have run inside this time: Callum Hawkins, who has been pre-selected for the Olympic Games marathon, and Jonny Mellor who ran 2:10:03 in Seville in January. Farah himself has opted to run on the track at the Olympic Games.

Mellor is one of a number of British athletes running the 2020 Virgin Money London Marathon. Other British men joining Mellor on the start line are Chris Thompson and debutants Ross Millington and Ben Connor.

Among the leading domestic women confirmed to race are Steph Twell, who ran a PB of 2:26:40 in Frankfurt last year to go sixth on the British all-time list, and 2018 British marathon champion Lily Partridge.

Due to the coronavirus pandemic, the elite races at the 2020 London Marathon will be held on a closed-loop circuit around St James’s Park in central London with the iconic finish on The Mall remaining the same as in previous years.

The races will be held in a secure biosphere as has been the case with other major sporting events such as Test Cricket and Formula 1. No spectators will be allowed on the road-side to watch. BBC Sport, however, is planning eight hours of live coverage of the event.

It will be the 40th race in London Marathon history and the first to have elite-only races.

Organisers for World Athletics

Elite fields

Eliud Kipchoge (KEN) 2:01:39
Kenenisa Bekele (ETH) 2:01:41
Mosinet Geremew (ETH) 2:02:55
Mule Wasihun (ETH) 2:03:16
Sisay Lemma (ETH) 2:03:36
Tamirat Tola (ETH) 2:04:06
Marius Kipserem (KEN) 2:04:11
Shura Kitata (ETH) 2:04:49
Vincent Kipchumba (KEN) 2:05:09
Sondre Nordstad Moen (NOR) 2:05:48
Gideon Kipketer (KEN) 2:05:51
Polat Kemboi Arikan (TUR) 2:08:14
Arne Gabius (GER) 2:08:33
Jared Ward (USA) 2:09:25
Jonny Mellor (GBR) 2:10:03
Elroy Gelant (RSA) 2:10:31
Daniele Meucci (ITA) 2:10:45
Brett Robinson (AUS) 2:10:55
Juan Luis Barrios (MEX) 2:10:55
Peter Herzog (AUT) 2:10:57
Jack Rayner (AUS) 2:11:06
Chris Thompson (GBR) 2:11:19
Stephen Scullion (IRL) 2:11:52
Remigijus Kancys (LTU) 2:12:50
Florian Carvalho (FRA) 2:12:53
Tristan Woodfine (CAN) 2:13:16
Michael Clohisey (IRL) 2:13:19
Ben Connor (GBR) debut

Brigid Kosgei (KEN) 2:14:04
Ruth Chepngetich (KEN) 2:17:08
Roza Dereje (ETH) 2:18:30
Vivian Cheruiyot (KEN) 2:18:31
Valary Jemeli (KEN) 2:19:10
Degitu Azimeraw (ETH) 2:19:26
Ashete Bekere (ETH) 2:20:14
Alemu Megertu (ETH) 2:21:10
Sara Hall (USA) 2:22:16
Sinead Diver (AUS) 2:24:11
Carla Salome Rocha (POR) 2:24:47
Ellie Pashley (AUS) 2:26:21
Sara Caterina Ribeiro (POR) 2:26:39
Steph Twell (GBR) 2:26:40
Anna Hahner (GER) 2:26:44
Molly Seidel (USA) 2:27:31
Gerda Steyn (RSA) 2:27:48
Darya Mykhaylova (UKR) 2:28:15
Lisa Hahner (GER) 2:28:39
Lily Partridge (GBR) 2:29:24
Tracy Barlow (GBR) 2:30:42
Natasha Cockram (GBR) 2:30:49
Risper Gesabwa (MEX) 2:30:59
Tish Jones (GBR) 2:31:00
Monika Bytautiene (LTU) 2:32:28
Edith Chelimo (KEN) debut