Tag Archives: London Marathon

Married couple ‘truly sorry’ after ‘cheating’ at London Marathon

A married couple have apologized after ‘cheating’ at this year’s London Marathon.

Monika Czarnecka and her husband Piotr were seen running the iconic 26.2 mile course together while wearing the same number (11250).

It was subsequently found that only Monika was registered for the event last Sunday on 3 October, with Piotr producing a fake race number in order to accompany her along the route to offer “moral support”.

The game was up after both runners posted their efforts on Strava before later deleting the entries. The couple finished in 21,697th place in a time of 4:40:58 with Monika, from Buckinghamshire, telling the Mail: “I’m truly sorry for what we’ve done and didn’t want to cause any harm.

“The supporters were amazing, and their cheering and clapping helped me finish the marathon and it hurts to think that I’ve let them down. “This was my first marathon and I needed Piotr’s support because I was worried sick that I wouldn’t be able to finish it.”

Monika Czarnecka and her husband Piotr have been accused of cheating. Photos show the pair running in vests with the same number on. PHOTO: TWITTER

While Piotr moved to accept full responsibility, adding: “It was all my idea and I take full responsibility for it. I know it’s wrong and I’m truly sorry, but I did what I did to support my wife.” A total of around 40,000 runners ran in the capital to The Mall, with a further 40,000 competing virtually.

Despite so many on the streets of London, acquiring a place can be notoriously tricky, with a record 457,861 applicants for the 2020 race, which eventually became the 2021 race due to Covid-19. Those selected at complete random are then charged £49 ($66) (UK residents) to race.

With many left disappointed for years at their bad luck, an inevitable backlash on social media followed after the controversy involving the couple. One tweet read: “I’ve had 9 rejections in 9 years. This kind of thing is incredibly frustrating. Next year is my last chance. I’m not holding out any hope.”

While another runner added: “It’s not fair if we are paying around £200 for a charity place, stressing raising £2k, and you get virtuals or fakes on course really.”

The London Marathon confirmed that an investigation is underway. A spokesperson said: “We are aware of the images that show two runners wearing identical numbers and we are investigating. “We take any incident where a participant cheats or forges numbers extremely seriously.”

Sheikha Hanouf breaks nine National Records at the London Marathon

Qatari champion Sheikha Hanoof bint Thani Al-Thani finished the London Marathon 2021 by breaking nine national records in different races.

Qatar Olympic Committee (QOC) congratulated Sheikha Hanoof in a post on Twitter and said it was a new milestone for Qatari women.

“Congratulations to all of Qatar. The Qatari champion Sheikha Hanoof bint Thani Al-Thani completed London Marathon 2021 breaking 9 national records in 5km, 10km, 15km, half marathon, 10 miles, 30km and marathon distances,” QOC said on Twitter.

Training with Kipchoge led to London Marathon breakthrough

First British man home in Sunday’s marathon says thanks to his No.1 running companion

Phil Sesemann is spoiled for choice when it comes to training partners at his base in Leeds. Among many others there is 27:53 10,000m man Emile Cairess for starters.

His best running partner, though, is his dog called Kipchoge – a three-year-old Spaniel and Vizsla cross.

Kipchoge sometimes runs up to 100 miles a week and Sesemann has another younger four-legged friend who is starting to do some of the miles with him too – a German Shorthaired Pointer called Haile.

“Emile is a good runner but Kipchoge is always there,” says Sesemann with a smile when asked to pick his favourite training partner.

On a more serious note, moving from London to Leeds for medical studies a decade ago paid off for him in style on Sunday as he finished seventh place overall in 2:12:58 – inside the qualifying standard for next year’s Commonwealth Games and European Championships.

He is coached by Andrew Henderson in the northern city and benefits from the new Leeds hub support set-up there. A junior doctor, he has understanding colleagues too who have let him work part-time while he pursues his dream to be an elite runner.

“I’m really lucky because since I qualified four years ago I’ve been part-time,” he explains. “My colleagues have said ‘this is your shot, so give it a go and the medical career can wait’. At the moment this is what I enjoy and I find having a bit of a balance works too.”

Sesemann has certainly served his athletics apprenticeship with PBs ranging from 3:40 for 1500m and 13:39 for 5km through to 28:24 for 10km and 62:47 for the half-marathon.

On the race itself on Sunday, he said: “I just tried to soak up the atmosphere early on and then from 10 to 13 miles I began to feel really good. The groups came back together and then began to split and I found myself at the front as they split. So I just tried to use the pacemakers and then as a few guys dropped back I thought I might as well take a swing at things and see what happens.

“Unfortunately when the pacemakers dropped out I went into the headwind and the last six miles felt like a little bit of a death march. It was a case of taking one mile at a time and drawing on all the training I’d been doing and the support of my family and friends who were out there.”

Sesemann was paced by Jake Smith for much of the distance. They know each other well as they trained together during August this year. “I knew he would do a great job,” says Sesemann.

Overall, he added: “I can’t complain. Ten out of ten. It’s a marathon debut. Maybe I’d like to have run a bit quicker but I could come back here next year and run 2:09 and be the third Brit and finish 12th overall so I can’t complain at being seventh in the London Marathon and being first Brit.”

A keen club runner who used to race for Blackheath and Bromley in his youth before joining Leeds City, he continued: “I just have to recover now ready for the national six-stage road relay next weekend in Sutton Park. Aldershot have a strong team and my club Leeds City have a title to defend.”

Aldershot will be hoping Leeds don’t stick Kipchoge in their team.

Source: athleticsweekly.com

Sisay Lemma lifts the 2021 London Marathon title

Ethiopia’s Sisay Lemma gave one of the finest performance at the 2021 London Marathon that was held on Sunday (3) in the London streets.

Lemma goes to history books as the sixth fastest runner at the London marathon when he cut the tape in 2:04.01.

Lemma who finished on the podium last year was followed by Vincent Kipchumba who took silver in 2:04.28.

Another Ethiopian Mosinet Geremew closed the podium three finishes in 2:04.41

The defending champion Shura Kitata came sixth after suffering a hamstring injury.


Joyciline Jepkosgei wins the 2021 London Marathon

Kenya’s Joyciline Jepkosgei became the seventh fastest woman of all time when she took the top honor at the 2021 Virgin London Marathon that was held on Sunday (3) in the streets of London.

The reigning New York Marathon champion also set a new personal best when she cut the tape in 2:17.43 on her debut in the British capital, becoming the seventh fastest woman in history.

The 28-year-old, who was a pacemaker in London two years ago, finished 15 seconds ahead of Ethiopian Degitu Azimeraw whose compatriot Ashete Bekere came third. “Some years back I was pacing [in] London so it was better preparation,” Jepkosgei said. “And the day [winning the race] has finally come… I’m privileged to be in London.”

The world women marathon record holder Brigid Kosgei, competing eight weeks after claiming silver at the Tokyo Olympics, was aiming for a third consecutive victory in London. The 27-year-old rallied briefly but finished fourth in 2:18.40.



Where to watch the LONDON MARATHON

The 2021 London Marathon takes place on Sunday, October 3. The elite women start at 4:00 a.m. EDT, and the elite men start at 4:30 a.m. EDT.

The women’s field is led by defending champion and world record-holder Brigid Kosgei. The men’s field is led by defending champion Shura Kitata, who will be joined by three athletes with sub-2:03 personal bests.

The 2021 Virgin Money London Marathon will be broadcast live in 198+ countries with worldwide news access.

Please see table below for details of which broadcaster or channel is showing coverage in your region.

scroll across to see the full list

Broadcaster Territory
Flotrack Australia, Canada & USA
SportTV 2 Brazil
Great Sports Channel China
Olympic Channel China, Japan & MENA*
EBU Europe
ZDF Germany
Sport 1 Israel
NTV Kenya
Sky Sport 6 New Zealand
NRK 1 Norway
SuperSport Variety 3 and 4 Pan Africa
Eurosport 2 Pan Asia & Pan Europe*
Eurosport Player Pan Asia & Pan Europe*
Discovery+ Pan Asia & Pan Europe*
ESPN Play Pan Latin America*
Star+ Pan Latin America*
Teledeporte Spain
SRG-SSR Switzerland
ZBC2 Tanzania
NTV Uganda
Reuters Worldwide (excluding UK)
SNTV Worldwide (excluding UK)

Brigid Kosgei targets third straight London Marathon title

Tokyo Olympic silver medallist, Brigid Kosgei will attempt to win her third successive women’s title at the London Marathon that will be held on Sunday (3) in the Streets of London.

The 27-year-old, who is recovering from the heat and humidity of Sapporo in Japan in early August, is likely to face considerably cooler and damper conditions in the British capital.

The worry is whether she has recovered and rediscovered sufficient fitness given the short turnaround since the Games, where she finished in second place behind Peres Jepchirchir.

“My body was very tired after the Olympics but I did a lot of preparation to correct this and now I have come to London to do my best,” said Kosgei, who took only a couple of days off after her marathon at the Games before getting back into training.

On claiming a hat-trick of titles in London this weekend, Kosgei added: “I love London so I would really like to do that here. I am ready as I have prepared well as I want to defend my title.”

Mary Keitany, who retired a few days ago, won London three times in recent years – the latter with a women-only world record of 2:17.01. This is a natural target for Kosgei, who holds the outright women’s world record with with a time of 2:14.04 that she got at the 2019 Chicago Marathon.

Paula Radcliffe also won three London Marathon titles, but Katrin Dörre from Germany will be remembered in history books as the only woman who has won the race back to back from 1992 to 1994.

Kosgei won her first London crown two years ago in 2:18.20 but then returned last year during the pandemic to win an elite- only race in 2:18.58.

The World women record-holder was speaking at the pre-event press conferences in a hotel just outside Windsor along with rival runners Joyciline Jepkosgei of Kenya and Birhane Dibaba of Ethiopia after they had arrived on a charter flight from east Africa.

The East African elite athletes were carried in a special flight which was arranged by the race organizers due to the pandemic.

Jepkosgei is the reigning New York City Marathon champion while Dibaba is a two-time winner in the Tokyo Marathon.

Shura Kitata to defend his London Marathon title despite hamstring injury

Ethiopia’s Shura Kitata who is the reigning London Marathon champion has insisted he is ready to defend his crown on Sunday (3) despite being troubled by a hamstring injury.

Last year in October, Kitata edged a sprint finish in the elite men’s race to topple the great Eliud Kipchoge, who had won the annual event in England’s capital on four occasions.

The Ethiopian could not follow up a maiden London Marathon title with success at the Olympics this summer and pulled out in hot and humid conditions in Sapporo.

“I have some slight problems but still I am preparing to win and looking forward to it,” the 25-year-old said via a translator during Wednesday’s press conference.

“I was prepared very well before the Olympics and just two weeks before I had a hamstring injury, that was a big pressure for me. Otherwise I have prepared well and I am feeling confident to run on Sunday.

“The hamstring and the pain is not really easy and when it is a very fast speed, there might be some problem but I am looking forward to doing what I did before.”

Another sprint finish this year would raise doubts over the Ethiopian’s ability to clinch the event for a second time but he reflected on the life-changing experience of triumphing over Kipchoge, who bounced back to defend his Olympic title in August.

“I was very happy with the win last year and it had great meaning because Eliud is a very famous runner and a very strong runner so winning meant a lot,” Kitata added.

Kitata will battle for the honors with Evans Chebet from Kenya who will be making his debut and Birhanu Legese from Ethiopia who is the fastest man in the field following his winning run of 2:02.48 at the 2019 Berlin Marathon.

All you need to know about the Virgin Money London Marathon

The 2021 London Marathon is set to take place at the end of this week, making a physical return after a virtual event was held in 2020 due to the Coronavirus pandemic.

An estimated 100,000 runners are expected to take part, making this the biggest event yet in its history.

Before that though there is an important event competitors will need to attend ahead of making their way to the starting line.

The Virgin Money London Marathon Running Show begins from tomorrow (Wednesday 29 September).

It is a place to soak in the atmosphere of the famous run with a number of speakers and activities to take in.

Also, it is part of the Six Steps to the Start Line that all runners need to complete to be able to actually be allowed to run.

Here’s all you need to know about the exhibition.

What do runners need to do at the Virgin Money London Marathon Running Show?
A number of steps from the ‘Six Steps to the Start Line’ need to be completed by runners at the event.

This starts with Step 2, which is packing your kitbag in advance.

The kitbag would have been sent to runners ahead of time, and it will be handed to them once they cross the finish line on the day.

Things to put in might be warm clothing or non-perishable food items.

Even if you don’t want to put anything in, you still need to bring it to the Running Show as a souvenir medal; New Balance finisher’s T-shirt, BUXTON Natural Mineral Water and Lucozade Sport will be included regardless.

Dropping off your kitbag is the main part of attending.

Taking a lateral flow test on the day you are going to the ExCel centre is also important, as proof of a negative test and your kitbag will be required for you to pick up your bib number.

What if I cannot attend the Virgin Money London Marathon Running Show?

If you are a runner and you cannot attend the event then you can nominate someone to drop your items off for you.

They must have:

  • Your kitbag with the self-adhesive sticker attached
  • A letter, written and signed by you, authorising that person – by name – to collect your bib number and drop off your kitbag
  • A clear photocopy of your passport or driving licence showing your name and your signature
  • Evidence of their negative lateral flow test
  • Their own suitable photo identification with them

What will be on at the Virgin Money London Marathon Running Show?
Over 100 charities and other companies will have stands at the event.

This ranges from the likes of the WWF, British Heart Foundation and Alzheimer’s Research UK to Joe Nimble, Knead It Sport, Peloton and New Balance.

Additionally, special celebrity guests and experts will be there to provide insight on how best to approach the run.

BBC Breakfast presenter Louise Minchin will be one of those people, having run the virtual event last year, with talks like ‘Running Free of Injuries’ with Paul Hobrough will also be useful.

In 2019, Sir Mo Farah was one of those individuals to come along

Where does the Virgin Money London Marathon Running Show take place?
The show is taking place at ExCel London, with the closest station being the Prince Regent DLR.

Full address is: ExCel London – Entrance Hall S10, Royal Victoria Dock, 1 Western Gateway, London, E16 1XL.

What time is the Virgin Money London Marathon Running Show open?
It is open from Wednesday 29 September to Saturday 2 October in the build-up to the actual marathon.

From Wednesday to Friday it is open from 10am to 8pm, with slightly shorter hours on Saturday from 8.30am to 5.30pm.

Source: surreycomet.co.uk

Shura Kitata faces a tough battle as he defends his London Marathon title

Ethiopia’s Shura Kitata will be the star to watch at the 41st edition of the London Marathon that will be held on 3rd October in London.

Kitata who pulled out of the Olympic Games marathon last weekend after suffering in the hot and humid conditions in Sapporo – will line up with the other men who joined by Vincent Kipchumba from Kenya and Sisay Lemma from Ethiopia, who also struggled in the heat of the Olympic Games marathon.

Shura beat Eliud Kipchoge in the 2020 London Marathon to secure his first London Marathon title, just a second ahead of Vincent Kipchumba.

The two will be joined by the 2020 Valencia Marathon champion, Evans Chebet who was the fastest man in the world last year with his personal best of 2:03.00.Another title contender is the two-time Tokyo Marathon champion Birhanu Legese from Ethiopia, who is the third-fastest marathoner of all time with a time of 2:02.48 that he got at the 2019 Berlin Marathon.

Kitata will also face-off with Mosinet Geremew and  Mule Wasihun both coming to the race with a personal best of 2:02.55 and 2:03.16) respectively. This two also finished on the podium at the 2019 Virgin Money London Marathon, also return.

Kitata was quoted by race organisers saying,“I was disappointed to have to pull out of the Olympic Games marathon but I just did not adapt to the weather well. It was very cold in Ethiopia prior to leaving for Tokyo and when we got there the weather took its toll on my body and made my breathing very hard. But I’m healthy and looking forward to racing in the Virgin Money London Marathon again. I am preparing very well and my coach has me very ready to defend my title in London.

 “Winning last year was an unforgettable memory and it gave me huge excitement to bring back such a big victory to my country and to make my family and coaches proud. I have set my mind on how I can run fast and better than last year and I’m looking forward to seeing if I can repeat the victory and make history in the race.”

Virgin Money London Narathon event director, Hugh Brasher, said: “We are delighted to welcome our reigning champions back to defend their titles at the 2021 Virgin Money London Marathon and, as always, they will be challenged by a stellar field of the world’s best marathon runners. Sunday 3 October is set to be an extraordinary day in our history as these great athletes lead the way as tens of thousands of mass runners take on their 26.2 mile challenge from Greenwich to Westminster and around the world in the virtual event.”

The organisers have allowed a limit of up to 50,000 runners in the mass race and up to 50,000 around the world to take on the virtual event, completing the 26.2 miles on the route of their choice any time between 00:00 and 23:59:59 BST.



Name Country PB
Birhanu LEGESE ETH 2:02:48
Mosinet GEREMEW ETH 2:02:55
Titus EKIRU KEN 2:02.57
Evans CHEBET KEN 2:03.00
Mule WASIHUN ETH 2:03.16
Sisay LEMMA ETH 2:03.36
Kinde ATANAW ETH 2:03.51
Shura KITATA ETH 2:04.49
Vincent KIPCHUMBA KEN 2:05.09
Tristan WOODFINE CAN 2:10.51