The 37th Chicago Marathon was run on 12th October 2014 and again, the Kenyans came out top. Nearly 45,000 runners pounded the streets of Chicago and it is estimated that 1.7 million people cheered on the runners.
LADIES - RITA JEPTOO
Rita Jeptoo, from Kenya, has won the last two Chicago and Boston Marathons. This year Jeptoo’s time was 2:24:35. Winning the 2014 Chicago Marathon means that Jeptoo has taken the coveted 2013-2014 World Marathon Major Series title and goes home with $500,000. Jeptoo set a course record for this year’s Boston Marathon with a time of 2:18:57. Athletes complained that the weather in the windy city was not conducive to breaking records. Jeptoo’s time last year was 2:19:57, but she said, “The race is the race. It was a great day for me and my fans.” Rita Jeptoo was born on 15th February 1981 in Karona Village in Moiben, in Uasin Gishu in Kenya. She was the eldest child of the family of peasant farmers. Jeptoo’s racing career began at school at the age of 15 when she won the 3,000, 1,500 and 800 meter races against a rival school. She won her first marathon in 2004 – the Stockholm Marathon. Jeptoo is married and lives permanently in the home of her birth.
MEN’S RACE – ELIUD KIPCHOGE
Kenyans took 1st, 2nd and 3rd place in the men’s race. This was Kipchoge’s first major marathon victory and he ran it in 2:4:11. The winners each received $100,000 for their efforts. Eliud Kipchoge was born on 5th November 1984 in Kapsisiywa, Kapsabet, Nandi in the Rift Valley of Kenya. Kipchoge did a little long distance running while still at school but it wasn’t until 2002 that he won a place in the IAAF World Cross Country championships in Dublin. In 2002 he came fifth and in 2003 he came first and began to be noticed by the world. In the 2004 Athens Olympic Games, Kipchoge took home bronze in the 5000 meters and in the Beijing 2008 Olympic Games he broke the course record for the 5000 meters but only took home silver, as Bekele took the gold. After Kipchoge’s failure to make the 2012 Olympic team, he decided to run half marathons, in which he has been highly successful. It was in April this year that he made his marathon debut and on 4th May he won the Hamburg marathon. All runners out there – please remember to stay safe and wear reflective clothing such as reflective running vests or reflective belts.