(Reuters) – Mary Keitany has set her sights on breaking Paula Radcliffe’s world record at the London Marathon this year and will run with male pacemakers as the Briton did when she set the mark of two hours, 15 minutes and 25 seconds at the event in 2003.
Kenyan Keitany, 36, clocked 2:17:01 to break Radcliffe’s women-only marathon world record en route to her victory in London last year and is looking to rewrite the record books once more.
“I know the record was set by Paula Radcliffe on this course in 2003 and that she is a popular person in Britain, but I really hope the London crowds get behind my challenge and can help drive me on to achieve something incredible,” Keitany said.
“Obviously, any world record is contingent on everything being right on the day. London has shown it has the course for world records to be broken and I hope my form and health stay strong and that the weather is kind on the day.”
Keitany will be challenged by Ethiopian rival Tirunesh Dibaba, who confirmed her participation on Tuesday, while last year’s world champion Rose Chelimo will also be part of the elite women’s field for the April 22 event.
(Reporting by Shrivathsa Sridhar in Bengaluru; Editing by John O’Brien)