Kipchoge just short of breaking 2-hour marathon record at Nike Breaking2 event

Ismaeel Naar
Ismaeel Naar - Staff writer, Al Arabiya English
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Kenyan long distance runner Eliud Kipchoge missed out on becoming the first athlete to run a marathon in under two hours by 25 seconds.

Kipchoge, 32, finished the race in 2:00.24 at a trial run in Italy's Monza Grand Prix circuit but due to the use of 20 in-out pacemakers, the time will not be recognized as a world record, meaning Dennis Kimetto's mark of 2:02.57 at the Berlin Marathon in 2014 is still the quickest.

Global sporting company Nike is attempting to prove runners could run a marathon in under two hours and so launched the “Breaking2” project.

“To make it happen, Nike assembled a diverse team of world-class innovators who are bringing this bold vision to life. The team includes engineers and designers; biomechanists and nutritionists; physiologists and materials developers — all working together to help Eliud Kipchoge, Lelisa Desisa and Zersenay Tadese get the most out of every stride,” a statement from Nike read.

Although none of the three long-distance runners were able to actually break under the two-hour mark, Nike’s President and CEO Mark Parker said in a statement provided to Al Arabiya English said there was a cause for celebration.

“Today, millions of people around the world watched as running history was written. At Breaking2, Eliud Kipchoge ran 26.2 miles faster than any human ever. With a time of 2 minutes and 25 seconds, this is dramatically faster than the world record,” Parker said.

“It's a moment of global inspiration that will encourage every athlete, in every community, to push the limits of their potential,” he added.

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