Kipchoge, Farah Rematch At 2019 London Marathon

Who will take the crown this year?

Derek Call |

For the second year in a row, running legends Eliud Kipchoge and Mo Farah will face each other in the London Marathon. And with impressive 2018 marathon wins for both, the sequel should be even better than last year’s race.

Kipchoge, the reigning London Marathon champion, has won the event three times, including a course-record 2:03:05 in 2016. In a video released by race officials Monday, the world record holder in the marathon said he was “excited” to return, though he wouldn’t guarantee another 2:01:39 performance like in Berlin.

“I had a memorable 2018, winning the Virgin Money London Marathon and then setting a new world record at the BMW Berlin Marathon,” Kipchoge said in the video announcement. “I’m hoping that 2019 is just as good to me.”

Kipchoge may be undefeated in his last nine marathon attempts, but that doesn’t mean a victory is guaranteed. Farah, who finished third at last year’s London Marathon, is riding his own hot streak, breaking the tape in Chicago last year in a European-record time of 2:05:11. The four-time Olympic gold medallist told reporters after the race he wouldn’t rule out an upset over Kipchoge in his hometown marathon.

“I think it’s possible if I can have the confidence from this race, (I) have a third in London, and keep learning and mix in with the guys. I think it’s possible,” Farah said.

Kipchoge broke away from Farah by the 32-kilometre mark in 2018’s balmy, 21-degree race to win in 2:04:17. Despite missing hydration bottles at two water stops early in the race, Farah finished third in a British record 2:06:21.

Also in the mix is Ethiopia’s Shura Kitata, 22, who was runner-up to Kipchoge last year in London and also placed second in New York City this past November.

The 2019 London Marathon will take place on Sunday, April 28.

The complete men’s and women’s field will be released in the coming days.

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