Nairobi — After clinching her second successive title at the Chicago Marathon, two-time champion Ruth Chepng’etich admits the idea of running in the Windy City at next year’s edition is irresistible.
Chepng’etich turned in a ‘ruthless’ performance on Sunday, clocking a personal best of 2:14:18 and missing out on the women’s world record by a mere 14 seconds.
“Next year? I am happy to come back here and do wonders. I can’t miss it and God willing, I will be running in Chicago again,” she said.
The world half marathon record holder seems to have struck a chord with the city considering it was here she notched her first-ever World Marathon Major win, clocking 2:22:31 on her way to victory.
The 2019 World marathon champion recovered from her setback at July’s World Championships in Oregon, where she relinquished her world title without a fight as she had to pull out of the race due to injury complications.
When quizzed on her intentions to break the 2:14:04 world record, currently held by compatriot Brigid Kosgei, Chepng’etich said it is only a matter of time before she attains this target.
“I am happy to have won today and defend my title. It was a good race… I only missed out on the world record by a few seconds. I am confident that next time I will not miss it,” she said.
Meanwhile, the men’s winner, Benson Kipruto, was more than happy to continue a family’s tradition by following in the footsteps of his brother Dickson Chumba who won the Chicago Marathon in 2015.
“I am very happy that my family has a very special connection with this competition. I wish him well as he prepares for his own races and want him to know that I have picked up from where he left (as far as the Chicago Marathon is concerned),” he said.
Kipruto, who finished third at April’s Boston Marathon, timed a personal best of 2:04:24 to defeat defending champion Seifu Tura of Ethiopia and emerge victorious.
Like Chepng’etich, the 2018 Tokyo Marathon champion hopes to return next year to defend his title.
“It is a wonderful city and the course is flat so I like it very much. Most of the people are athletics fans so they come out to cheer us on and this motivates very much,” he said.