Mary Keitany breaks a marathon record with 3rd London win

Kenya's Mary Keitany changed that on Sunday morning by running a new women's-only marathon world record of 2:17:01 as she recorded her third victory at the London Marathon.

In the pre-race press conference, Keitany announced her assault on the women's-only world record of 2:17:42 set by Radcliffe in 2005.

The Ethiopian ran the quickest time of 2016 when he won the Berlin Marathon in September in 2:03:03, just six seconds outside the world record, making him the second fastest marathon runner of all time.

He told the Express: "In order for me to feel like I can justify asking people for money I needed to up the stakes".

The men's elite and mass start races were started by Prince Harry and The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge. From there it was becoming tougher and tougher.

Wanjiru, who won Amsterdam Marathon in personal best 2:05:21 in October past year, beat the pre-race favourite Bekele by nine seconds.

Meanwhile, Alyson Dixon was the first British women's runner to cross the finish line followed by Charlotte Purdue and Tracy Barlow.

There was a British victor in the wheelchair race, with David Weir storming to his seventh victory in the event to end four years of frustration since his last success.

In the women's elite race, Kenyan champion Mary Keitany vies for her third London Marathon title, coming up against fierce competition from world champion Mare Dibaba and Britain's Jo Pavey, who is still competing at the age of 43.

The 2009 world half-marathon champion set off on her own with just a pacemaker for company in the early stages, passing 5km in 15:31, 10km in 31:17 and half way in 1:06:54. "The sun was coming and the day was attractive - but we don't need too much sun!"

And there was an extra poignancy as the runners swept round the corner of the Embankment past Westminster Bridge, scene of last month's terror attack which killed four people, while a policeman died of stab wounds within the nearby parliament grounds the same day.

"The weather was good at the beginning, it was nice for me and my pace".

"There were times when perhaps I thought I'd never win again but this race is so special to me and I wanted this so badly".

"I knew running in a Stormtrooper outfit would be quite the challenge". This is Weir's seventh marathon title.

Keitany's chances of becoming the first three-time victor since Radcliffe in 2005 were affected by illness previous year before a heavy fall in the latter stages ultimately ended her bid.

On April 9, Kenyan couple Paul Lonyangata and Purity Rionoripo made it a family affair when they won the men and women races at the 41st Paris Marathon.

  • Jon Douglas