London: World record-holder Wilson Kipsang won the men’s London Marathon in a course record two hours, four minutes and 29 seconds on Sunday as Britain’s Mo Farah found life tough on his debut over the distance.
Kipsang’s smashed the previous London record of 2hr 04min 40sec set by fellow Kenyan Emmanuel Mutai in 2011.
It was a second London victory for Kipsang, the 2012 champion, who outpaced compatriot Stanley Biwatt in the finishing straight.
Tsegaye Kebede of Ethiopia, last year’s winner was third, and Ayele Abshero of Ethiopia was fourth.
Kenya celebrated a race double as Edna Kiplagat, runner-up for the past two years in London, won the women’s event.
The event was marred by tragedy as it was announced that one of the runners had died after crossing the finish line.
“A 42-year-old man collapsed after the finish line and although immediate medical attention was provided to the casualty, the fatality was confirmed on his arrival at hospital,” said a statement issued by organisers.
In the men’s race Kipsang and Biwott surged away from a leading group of eight after some two-thirds of the way round the 26.2 mile (42.2 kilometre) course.
The two Kenyans were all but inseparable until, with just over a mile left, Kipsang broke his compatriot’s resolve with a finishing burst.
“It’s really great to win the London Marathon again,” said Kipsang.
“It was around 31km that I decided to push harder as I felt very comfortable and strong. I pushed again towards the finish line and that’s when I broke away.”