The Valencia Marathon ("Maraton Valencia" will be the last major marathon event of the year on December 5, 2021.
And it could even be the fastest marathon this year. That's because the race has an incredibly high-class lineup. Among others, the former half marathon world record holder Geoffrey Kamworor will be at the start.
Time for Kamworor's first big marathon time
The marathon career of the 29-year-old from Kenya as of today is highly unusual. Kamworor's best marathon time was set nine years ago, when he finished third in the Berlin Marathon in 2:06:12 at the age of 19. A good time, but far from world class. That Kamworor is currently one of the best long-distance runners in the world, however, remains undisputed. After all, in the years that followed, he ran to three individual world championship titles over the half-marathon distance between 2014 and 2018. In 2017 and 2019, he won the New-York City Marathon on a course that is not conducive to great times anyway. Shortly before his second marathon win in the Big Apple, he managed to set a world record over the half marathon distance with 58:01 minutes at the Copenhagen Half Marathon, but that has since become history again. Now it's long past time for the first big marathon time in Geoffrey Kipsang Kamworor's career.
Strong competition in the men's race
On paper, however, Kenyan Lawrence Cherono is the top favorite. He won the Boston and Chicago marathons two years ago. In Chicago, he ran an outstanding 2:03:04. At the Olympics this year, he had to make do with 4th place in the marathon.
Also competing with best times under 2:04 hours are Ethiopians Herpasa Negasa (2:03:40 hours) and Kinde Atanaw (2:03:51 hours). The former European marathon record holder Sondre Moen (2:05:48 hours) from Norway is also entered. Outside chances are Ethiopian Andamalak Belihu, who is making his marathon debut and holds a best time under 59 minutes over the half marathon distance.
The women's field
The elite women's field is less high-caliber. At least one runner with a best time under 2:20 hours is missing. Guteni Shone leads the field of participants. The Ethiopian finished second in the Dubai Marathon in 2020 with a time of 2:20:11 hours, which was only just above this mark. Ethiopian Azmera Gebru also has a best time under 2:21 hours with 2:20:48 hours, run in Amsterdam in 2019. Co-favorites are also Rahma Rusa (3-time winner of the Rome Marathon) and Bornes Chepkirui (2018 winner of the Prague Marathon) from Ethiopia.
Course records on a high level
The women's course record from last year by Peres Chepchirchir is probably out of reach with 2:17:16 hours. In the men's race, the course record set last year by Evans Chebet (2:03:00 hours) is not impossible.
Next marathon record for Germany?
Strongly represented in Valencia is the marathon team from Germany. After all, Amanal Petros returns to the place where he managed the German marathon record last year. At that time he ran with 2:07:18 hours the fastest marathon time ever achieved by a German. In his current marathon preparation, Petros now also managed to set a national record over the half marathon distance with 60:09 minutes. An improvement of the German marathon record would now come as little surprise in Valencia.
Also starting for Germany are Hendrik Pfeiffer (PB: 2:10:18 h), Tom Gröschel (2:12:45 h) and Konstantin Wedel (debut). In the women's race, Miriam Dattke hopes for a time under 2:30 hours in her marathon debut. Laura Hottenrott also has her sights set on that. After all, she already ran 2:28:02 in the spring.
Valencia Marathon live on TV
The Valencia Marathon 2022 will be broadcast live on Eurosport 2. Via internet ES2 can also be received on DAZN and Sky.