NAIROBI, Kenya, April 21- Boston Marathon champion and the fastest marathoner ever, Geoffrey Mutai, says his jaw-dropping 2:02:03 effort should be recognised as the world record in the distance.
Mutai who arrived back in the country Wednesday night in the company of fellow women’s Boston winner, Caroline Kilel, says the tough nature of the Boston course should be considered by world governing body, IAAF as the new all time ultimate distance best.
“It’s fair, it’s fair many times, because when you go to Boston it’s not an easy course, when you look at the time, I cannot comment anything on how I ran and made that time, it was the work of God.
“This time, I was not looking for anyone after halfway, I said I will push it alone but my colleague Mosop came and we pushed it together until the finish. I believe I can make even another (fast) time but for now, I cannot say how fast,” Mutai told reporters.
Debate has escalated since he shattered the frontiers of marathon running by posting a time that is a massive 57 seconds inside the recognised 2:03:59 world record held by Ethiopia’s Haile Gebrselassie from the 2008 Berlin Marathon.
Boston officials had earlier Wednesday they would petition world body, IAAF to identify Mutai’s mark as the international barometer of men’s ultimate distance running.
However, Mutai said lack of co-operation among elite runners and sufficiency in self belief had hindered Kenyan athletes from reclaiming the world record last held by Paul Tergat who raced 2:04:55 in Berlin in 2003.
“For us, we do not trust ourselves but after what I did, I know our runners will believe in themselves, personally, I also believe that I can do better,” he noted.
Despite his performance not being hailed as the benchmark in marathon running, Mutai said he reaped the rewards of persistence and favourable weather.
“Top athletes who had run there in the past said the course was tough. When we arrived, the weather was not good, it was raining and windy but on the day of the race the winds stopped, everything was clear, it was smooth and even organisers said there has never been such a day.
“In mind, I was not having any idea of breaking the world record in Boston. It was a tough competition and the event has never had such a field before. When we started, we started moving faster and after ten kilometres, we started even going faster,” he recalled.
Kilel, who edged a cliff hanger against American Desiree Davila to post a personal best of 2:22:38, said training in hilly terrain saw her gain the ultimate advantage in the sprint for the tape.
“I was training in Kericho where there are many hills and this made me like the Boston course. I knew I had more energy than her (Davilla) since when we were exchanging leads, I noticed she was tiring,” she said.
The 2010 Frankfurt marathon champion stated she will aim to break the 2:20 barrier in her next marathon and she would also relish a slot in the country’s team for August World Championships.
Both winners said they would take time off to soak their achievements before charting their next appearances.