A Few Thoughts on “Breaking 2: The Sequel”

By Mario Fraioli |
Eliud Kipchoge at the Iffley road track in London, site of Roger Bannister’s historic sub-4 minute mile. Photo: Tom Lovelock for INEOS 1:59 Challenge

The folks at Ineos probably won’t appreciate the title of this post, but that’s exactly what the Ineos 1:59 Challenge, starring Eliud Kipchoge, is shaping up to be this fall. The unsanctioned sub-2hour marathon attempt, which is being bankrolled by British billionaire Jim Ratcliffe, will take place sometime between late September and early October, at a yet-to-be determined venue, but preferably in London. This means Kipchoge will not defend his title at the Berlin Marathon, or branch out to run a different major, like New York or Chicago. He’ll instead be running another exhibition in an effort to break what Ineos is calling “the last great barrier of modern athletics.” (Note: Ineos must have recently changed their language here. Originally they were calling it “the last great milestone in athletics.”)

“It’s not about the IAAF, it’s about history,” Kipchoge explained. “I really want to leave a big legacy.” And while I’ll be the first to admit that I enjoyed Nike’s Breaking 2 event more than I thought I would, I’ve got a few issues with this upcoming attempt: (more…)

A Midwinter’s Marathon Tease

By Mario Fraioli |

It’s too early in the year to be thinking all that hard about April marathons unless you’re racing one of them, but Boston recently released its international fields and London surprised no one by announcing that Eliud Kipchoge and Mo Farah will have at it for the second year in a row. Both fields are shaping up to look fairly similar to years past: Boston’s history attracts almost all the top American talent while London’s deep pockets once again bring in the sport’s two biggest (male) stars.

Here’s a short video of Kipchoge talking about taking on Farah again in London. Let there be no doubt who the defending champion thinks is the man to beat on April 28.

Eliud Kipchoge: Not a Trace of Doubt in My Mind

By Mario Fraioli |

I’m going to come right out and say it: Eliud Kipchoge of Kenya is the greatest male distance runner—not just marathoner—ever to set foot on this planet. His marathon record—11 starts, 10 wins, an Olympic gold medal, and the world-record—combined with his achievements at shorter distances—two Olympic track medals, world titles in other disciplines, and some of the fastest times in history from 3,000m through the marathon—put him in rare company. Sure, you could make an argument for Haile Gebrselassie or Kenenisa Bekele, or maybe Emil Zatopek or Paavo Nurmi, but none of those men have had the range, consistency, or dominance in their primary event quite like Kipchoge has over the past 16 years. And sure, maybe its recency bias or the influence of our current social media generation coming through here, but none of those other men have captured the interest and imagination of runners and non-runners alike quite like “The Boss Man.” (more…)

SUBSCRIBE


ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Mario Fraioli
Mario Fraioli is a writer and running coach based in the San Francisco Bay Area.