Men's marathon at the World Athletics Championships in Oregon takes place on Sunday, July 17 at 6:15am local. There are several Africans, a European, an American and couple of Japanese runners that will battle for the the podium.
One of the favorites is Geoffrey Kamworor, who will run his first major championship marathon in Eugene. Kamworor will be joined in the Kenyan team by Barnabas Kiptum. Lawrence Cherono, who was also on the Kenyan team, was provisionally suspended last night from the World Championships by the Athletics Integrity Unit for positive doping test.
Kamworor was hit by a motorbike during a training run in June 2020 and needed surgery on a broken tibia. The 29-year-old Kenyan runner won the world silver medal in the 10000m in Beijing 2015, two world cross country gold medals in 2015 and 2017, and three world half marathon in 2014, 2016 and 2018. He finished third in Berlin in 2012 in 2:06:12 in his first marathon, and placed in the top three in New York four times (second in 2015, first in 2015 and 2019 and third in 2018). Last December he finished fourth in Valencia in 2020 In 2:05:23.
Kiptum placed third at the Milano Marathon in 2021 in 2:04:17.
The Ethiopian challenge is led by Lelisa Desisa, who won the New York Marathon in 2018, two editions of the Boston Marathon in 2013 and 2015, and two medals at the World Championships (silver in Moscow 2013 and gold in Doha 2019). Desisa set his PB of 2:03:45 in Dubai 2013. The other Ethiopian runners in the field are Tamirat Tola, who won the Olympic bronze medal in the 10000m in Rio 2016 and world silver medal in London 2017, Mosinet Geremew, world silver medallist in Doha and second at the London Marathon 2019 in 2:02:55 (the third fastest time in history), Seifu Tura, who set a lifetime best of 2:04:29 in Milan and winner in Chicago in 2:06:12 in 2019.
Among the European runners that has a potential to challenge East Africans are Abdi Nageeye from the Netherlands and Belgium's' Bashir Abdi, who won the Olympic silver and bronze medals respectively in Tokyo. Abdi improved the European record of 2:03:36 to win the Rotterdam Marathon in 2021. Nageeye claimed the win at this year’s Rotterdam Marathon in 2:04:56 beating Abdi.
Galen Rupp will carry the hopes of the US team. Rupp won the Olympic 10000m silver medal in London 2012 and the Olympic bronze medal in Rio 2016. Rupp became the first US runner to win the Chicago Marathon since 2002.
Kengo Suzuki leads the Japanese team with his national record of 2:04:56 set at the Lake Biwa Marathon in 2021. Daniel Do Nascimento from Brazil set his PB of 2:04:51 in Seoul last April.