There’s a new world record on the books—and it’s faster than the previous record by more than a minute.
On September 16, 2018, Kenya’s Eliud Kipchoge broke the tape at the 45th annual Berlin Marathon in 2:01:39, smashing the previous world record of 2:02:57 set in 2014 by Kenyan Dennis Kipruto Kimetto to pieces. Not since 1967 has the world record for the marathon been decimated by as much time, when Derek Clayton of Australia clocked 26.2 in 2:09:36, a full two and one-half minutes faster than the record standing at that time.
Kipchoge, whose average mile pace was approximately 4:38, started the race in the lead and never surrendered it. Amos Kipruto of Kenya placed second in 2:06:23, followed closely by Wilson Kipsang of Kenya, who finished in 2:06:48.
Though Kipchoge’s victory dominated headlines about this year’s Berlin Marathon, the professional women’s race also ended in significant success for winner Gladys Cherono of Kenya, who set a new course record and PR by running 2:18:11 in her third Berlin Marathon win. Cherono’s new PR makes her the fourth-fastest women’s marathon runner in history. Despite Cherono’s fast pace, two other women finished closely behind her, with Ruti Aga of Ethiopia placing second in 2:18:34 and Tirunesh Dibaba of Ethiopia placing third with a time of 2:18:55.
In addition to 2018 being the fastest-ever Berlin Marathon for professional men and women, it also reached new participation heights. Runners representing more than 133 countries traveled to Berlin to compete, with 44,389 starting the race and 40,775 crossing the finish line. To see the top 10 men’s and women’s finishers list, visit the official Berlin Marathon website, and browse through the gallery above to see photos from this year’s race.