NAIROBI, Kenya, October 11- It was not the world record he was hoping for but for Sh70 million, Samuel Wanjiru will take the victory at Sunday’s Chicago Marathon.The Olympic marathon champion defied the chilly weather and a frigid headwind to set a course record of 2:05:41, breaking the mark set a decade ago by Morrocan Khalid Khannouchi.
It is the second time this year that Wanjiru has set a course record in a World Marathon Major after achieving the same feat in the London Marathon where in another dominant performance he clocked 2:05:10.
This performance will undoubtedly solidify the Nyahururu born runner’s status as the greatest marathoner of his generation
Wanjiru took to the course in typical belligerent fashion and was in familiar company with Paris marathon winner Vincent Kipruto and Charles Munyeki acting as the wingmen.
It was a titanic show of dominance from the Kenyan triumvirate who did not waste time in tearing away from the other 45,000 participants.
Halfway through the race it seemed another Morrocan Adderrahim Goumri would ruin Wanjiru’s day after managing to close the gap that had opened up between the Kenyans and the rest of the runners.
With destiny in sight, Wanjiru increased his pace to pull away from his countrymen as he attempted to break the mark he wanted the most.
Urged on by the crowned that lined the streets, Wanjiru cruised towards the finish line with relative ease. Not even failing to pick up much needed water could dampen his determination.
At the last corner, Wanjiru’s main challenger was the clock which he duly beat after saluting the crowd with metres remaining.
Goumri capped a fine effort to finish second in a time of 2:06:04 while Kipruto clinched third spot in 2:06:08.
Liliya Shobukhova of Russia won the women’s race in a time of 2:25:56.