Kiprotich sets 2nd career best time at the marathon
Fukuoka, Japan – December 3rd, 2017
Seasoned marathoner; Stephen Kiprotich rounded off the year in style with another 2nd place finish at the Fukuoka Marathon. The venue is becoming one of the favourites for the 28 year old after he set his second career marathon finish in a time of 2:07:10 on Sunday. His best time remains 2:06:33 set in 2015 at the Tokyo Marathon.
Sunday’s run, however, produced some stunning performances from Norwegian Sondre Nordtad Moen, who not only won but set a new European Marathon record 2:05:48.
As usual with marathon events, the usual suspects and big names led by defending champion Yemane Tsegay from Ethiopia, last year’s 3rd placed finisher; Yuki Kawauchi and Stephen Kiprotich all faded off with the strict fast start.
Favourite Bedan Karoki of Kenya and Sondre Moen; the eventual winner led past the 30km mark followed by Stephen Kiprotich who kept up the pace to take full charge of 2nd place. It was a mean feat to express at this stage.
Moen had different plans for the day when he pushed up the last uphill into the stadium. He not only crossed the finish line first with his time of 2:05:48 but he set himself a new European Marathon record and also become the 2nd man ever to go under 2:06 in Fukuoka; a time which also made him the fastest record legal time ever by an athlete born outside Africa.
Earlier through the season, Kiprotich had skipped the World Championships in London after failing to hit his peak form in time. The Fukuoka marathon was his 2nd marathon in 2017. In a space of 3 years, his best finish came at the Haspa Hamburg Marathon in April; a race in which Ethiopia’s Tsegaye Mekonnen won after a sprint to the tape in a time of 2:07:31 and 2:07:26 respectively.
Stephen finished 4th at the Tokyo Marathon last year before winding off the season with a 14th place finish at the 2016 Rio de Janeiro Olympic Games in Brazil in a time of 2:13:32.