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Kiplagat WR ratified, boost for London

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FLORENCE-KIPLAGAT-BERLINNAIROBI, Kenya, April 8- World governing body, IAAF has ratified the women senior 20km and 21km world records ran by Berlin Marathon champion, Florence Kiplagat on Tuesday.

In a brief statement on their website the world body confirmed that Kiplagat who is lined up for Sunday’s stellar London Marathon, is now the standard bearer at both distances following her storming triumph at the February 18 Barcelona Half Marathon.

Kiplagat crossed the 20km mark in 1:01:56 before completing the half in 1:05:12 to displace compatriot Mary Keitany who held the previous standards of 1:02:36 and 1:05:50 in that order winning the 2011 Ras Al Khaimah Half Marathon.

The two-time Berlin titleholder will face a world class field that has three runners who have ran under 2:20, including herself in the streets of London after making a flying start to 2014.

Returning champion and World Marathon Majors winner, Priscah Jeptoo and the debutant multi-world record breaker, Tirunesh Dibaba, are among the stars assembled for the race.

Olympic champion, Tiki Gelana (Ethiopia) who was tripped by wheelchair rider, Josh Cassidy, last year returns as well as double world champion Edna Kiplagat, who caught the bouquet from Jeptoo in 2013.

Ethiopian pair, Aberu Kebede (2013 Tokyo Marathon champion) and Feysa Tadesse (2013 Paris winner) as well as European star Tetyana Hamera-Shmyrko (Ukraine/2013 Osaka titleholder) are also in the field.

In Barcelona, Kiplagat, the 2010 World Half gold winner, sliced 38 seconds off the previous mark after leading the race in the Catalan city from the start and actually finished fourth overall, beaten only by a trio of male runners.

She passed 10km in 31.08, which was actually more than a minute faster than her official personal best for the distance in a 10km race, and 15km in 46:35.

Her world record was more than a minute faster than she had ever run before over the distance, her previous best of 1:06:38 coming in the 2012 Rome-Ostia race.

Kiplagat won the 2013 Berlin Marathon in 2:21:13 last September and built on that base in order to launch her assault on the record, helped by almost perfect still conditions and a temperature hovering around 13 degrees Celsius.

“This is a not a day I will forget, I’m so happy! The circuit was very fast and I really want to thank my pace makers, Marc Roig and Stanley Siroro, they did a great job.

“I felt so well from the beginning and the weather was perfect, so I had the feeling that this could be a special day,” the delighted Kiplagat said at the time.

The next woman was more than seven minutes in arrears, with Great Britain’s Nicola Duncan taking second place in 1:12:15.

The ratification of her record gives her a great boost as she prepares for the next chapter of what has thus far been a stellar distance running career.

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