Kipchoge Smashes World Record at 2022 Berlin Marathon

The Kenyan marathon legend ran an astonishing 4:37 mile pace to break his own record by 30 seconds.

By Taylor Dutch |

As many had predicted, Eliud Kipchoge of Kenya won the 2022 Berlin Marathon on September 25 in a world record time of 2:01:09. The finish was 30 seconds faster than his previous world record of 2:01:39, set in 2018.

Kipchoge’s victory was his fourth in Berlin and 17th overall in a career of 19 marathon starts (including two on non-record-eligible demo races).

Kipchoge, age 37, led wire-to-wire and won by almost five minutes. Mark Korir of Kenya was second in 2:05:58. Tadu Abate of Ethiopia was third in 2:06:28.

With ideal 12 degree temperatures on his side, the two-time Olympic champion put on another masterclass in marathon running.

By 15K, Kipchoge was already over a minute faster than the world record pace he set in Berlin four years ago. Minutes later, he flew through the halfway point in 59:51, amazingly on pace for a projected finish of 1:59:41. When he broke the world record in 2018, Kipchoge covered the first 13.1 in 1:01:06.

eliud kipchoge

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By 30K, Kipchoge was still on pace to shatter the world record, but a sub 2-hour marathon was looking unlikely.

After running a blazing first half, the last few sections were more of a grind for Kipchoge, who continued to slow down but maintained his edge over the previous mark. When it appeared that he was really struggling at 40K—a kilometre he covered in 3:12—Kipchoge showed a last-minute burst of energy by running 2:53 at 41K. He maintained that superhuman effort through the homestretch to crush his own world record by 30 seconds.

When asked if he could improve on the record again, Kipchoge said there’s “still more” in his legs. “I hope the future is still great,” he said on the race broadcast.

Kipchoge started today’s race as the indisputable greatest male marathoner in history. He won the 2016 and 2021 Olympic titles in dominating fashion. He holds the course records at Berlin, London, and Tokyo, and has also won the Chicago Marathon, for titles at four of the six World Marathon Majors. Kipchoge has said he wants to win all six majors, which would mean him running New York City and Boston. (We favour this plan!)

In addition to his world record, he has run the two fastest marathons in history in demonstration events that aren’t record-eligible. In May 2017, he ran 2:00:25 at the Nike Breaking2 event in Monza, Italy. He surpassed that time in October 2019 at the Ineos 1:59 Challenge in Vienna, Austria, where he followed a phalanx of pacers to finish in 1:59:40.

Women’s Race

In her second crack at the distance, Tigist Assefa of Ethiopia won the women’s race in a stunning time of 2:15:37 to set a new course record in Berlin. While it wasn’t a world record like Eliud Kipchoge’s race, it was a massive PR for Assefa, who ran her debut marathon in March at the Riyadh Marathon in a time of 2:34:01.

In second was Rosemary Wanjiru of Kenya with a time of 2:18. Tigist Abayechew of Ethiopia was third in 2:18:03.

— Additional reporting by Scott Douglas

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