Maintaining Berlin’s traditional popularity among both elite and mass runners, 41,283 runners from 122 countries have entered the 43rd edition of the race which begins at 0915 on the avenue of June 17. The BMW BERLIN-MARATHON is part of the Abbott World Marathon Majors and an IAAF Gold Label Race, the highest category of road race awarded by the world governing body of athletics.
“I’ve trained well and, three years down the line from my world record here, I feel good and believe I have the potential to attempt the world record once more. Running at the top level, there is a lot of wear and tear on the body, especially when you are running for a time, but I am very focused on the world record,” said Wilson Kipsang, who will be making his second appearance in the BMW BERLIN-MARATHON. „My race here in 2013 has been the best of my career, of course and I have great memories of it.“ Kipsang went on to have an outstanding 2014, winning first in London and then New York, but is without a marathon win since.
Kenenisa Bekele is, in the opinion of many, the best track and cross country runner of all time. He has won three Olympic titles and five World Championships’ golds and is the world record holder over 5 and 10,000m, set 12 and 11 years ago respectively. But in the marathon Bekele has still to fulfil his potential. He won in Paris on his debut at the distance in 2014, setting a course record of 2:05:04 yet has been unable to improve on that time, suffering lengthy periods of injury with achilles tendon problems. “Since finishing third in London in April after being injured for so long, I have been training well, better than before. I consider my personal best of 2:05 to be slow compared to the best runners. I want to run as fast as I can on Sunday and beat my best,” said Kenenisa Bekele.
It is far from a foregone conclusion that the winner of the BMW BERLIN-MARATHON will be either be Kipsang or Bekele. The fastest man in the field is Emmanuel Mutai, the Kenyan who ran 2:03:13 in Berlin in 2014 and was beaten only by his compatriot Dennis Kimetto’s world record of 2:02:57. Mutai has not reached such heights since then so Berlin marks an attempt to regain such form. “My training has remained the same as in previous years and I know that very fast times are possible in Berlin,” said Emmanuel Mutai. Another man to watch is the 21-year-old Tsegaye Mekonnen. The Ethiopian won his debut at the distance in Dubai in 2014, setting a world class time of2:04:32 which was also a world junior record.
Among the nine runners with best times under 2:06 is Mark Kiptoo. The Kenyan has a strong chance of making history in becoming the fastest 40-year-old ever in the marathon. The current mark, stands at 2:08:38. Kiptoo has the recent pedigree to break the record, given that his best performances in recent years are 2:06:16 (2013), 2:06:49 (2014) and 2:06:00 (2015).
An innovation this year is Sunday’s entertainment programme for participants and spectators in the grandstand before the start. Seven giant video screens will show live pictures from 0715 ranging including stories about the marathon’s history, important pre-race information and all the emotions that go with Germany’s biggest marathon. A live stream (Second Screen) shows the mass runners on the course from midday on www.bmw-berlin-marathon.com. This stream continues on a tape loop on the website after the coverage is finished. “Almost Live” clips on Facebook during the marathon show brief highlights of the race both from the elite as well as the mass field.
A live stream showing the fun runners will be available from 12 noon onwards on Sunday at www.bmw-berlin-marathon.com. This stream will be kept available on the website with no time limit. Additionally video clips will be available via Facebook. They will also show the elite races.
BMW BERLIN-MARATHON Press Conferences
All press conferences take place in the Charlottenburg Room of the Hotel InterContinental. The media centre is also in the Hotel InterContinental.
Saturday, September 24 at 1800 BMW Winter Sport Relay Miriam Gössner, Biathlete, Sven Fischer, Biathlete, Tobias Wendl, Luge and Johannes Lochner, Bob Sleigh
Saturday, September 24 at approx. 18.30 Inline Skating: Winners and Leading Finishers
Sunday, September 25 at approx. 12.30 Winners and Leading Finishers
Further Information is in the Media Guide
The Media Guide for the BMW BERLIN-MARATHON contains a wide range of information and statistics and is available on the website to download.
More information is available online at: www.berlin-marathon.com
Photo credit: www.photorun.net