Arjen Robben hasn’t lost his lightning-quick speed after completing the Rotterdam Marathon in under three hours.
Robben clocked 2:58 – averaging just over 20 minutes for every 5km, a time most current footballers would be over the moon with. And Robben’s time was almost an hour quicker than the 3:45 fellow speedster Michael Owen clocked at the 2014 London Marathon.
After completing the marathon, Owen said: “What I’ve trained for all my life is speed and power, so doing this type of training was a real challenge.” Robben would have faced the same challenges, and fans were quick to praise the Dutchman, but couldn’t help a jibe.
One fan joked: “He would have finished in 2 hours but he kept cutting left when the route is heading right – as reported by a fan at the scene!”
“That’s an impressive time! Very different type of endurance from soccer,” a second added. While a third tweeted: “How is it possible for someone to run for 3 hours straight? I will never understand marathon runners.”
“Would have done it under 2 hours if he didn’t keep falling over when felt the slightest nudge,” a fourth joked. And another added: “Some pace … on and off the field. Testament to his mentality!”
Robben retired in 2021, following a brief return to his boyhood side Groningen. The 39-year-old had already retired in 2019, but he returned to the game to help his first club with their post-Covid problems.
It wasn’t a fairytale return for Robben, and he only managed six appearances in the Dutch top flight – without finding the net – hanging up his boots after one season back in football.
He released a short statement: “Dear football friends, I have decided to stop my active football career. A very difficult choice. I want to thank everyone for all the heartwarming support! Regards, Arjen.”
Former Dutch international Arjen Robben completed his first marathon on Sunday as he ran in the Rotterdam Marathon, finishing the 26.2 mile race in a stunning time.
Chelsea fan favourite Arjen Robben finished his first marathon on Sunday at the age of 38 in an insane time.
The former Netherlands international retired from football for a second time back in July after briefly coming out of retirement to sign for boyhood club Groningen in the Eredivisie. Now, less than a year after retiring and at the age of 38, he has completed his first ever marathon in a time of three hours, 13 minutes and 40 seconds.
Robben averaged seven minutes and 23 seconds per mile as he completed the Rotterdam Marathon on Sunday alongside former speed skater Erben Wennemars.
Speaking after the race, Robben told local outlet Rijnmond, via Goal: “Not fun, it really wasn’t fun. I made it, but that’s about it. I often went deep and had to fight often enough, but this was also a real fight.
“That audience on the side helps you so much. Thanks to everyone for that, that got me through. In the beginning I was a bit preoccupied with a time, but at a certain point you throw that overboard.
“Then it’s surviving and entering my first marathon. Then you notice what something like that does to your body, but I made it.”
Since retiring for good at the end of last season, Robben has combined training for the marathon with a move into coaching, having become a youth coach at fourth tier Dutch side Quick 1887 in January.
Tokyo Olympics silver medallist, Abdi Nageeye smashed the Dutch National Record as he beat a strong deep elite field at the 41st edition of the NN Rotterdam Marathon that was held on Sunday (10) in Rotterdam, Netherlands.
The Somali-Dutch born athlete was forced to a sprint finish by Ethiopia’s Leul Gebresilase who could not onto the third kick attempt which was too much for him.
The 33 year-old who is also coached by Eliud Kipchoge’s coach, Patrick Sang, forged ahead with a powerful kick to smash the Dutch National Record 2:06.17 that he set last year with a new Record of 2:04.54 which is also his personal best. Negeeye also became the first Dutch to win this race
Kenya’s Reuben Kipyego Kiprop who was the the second fastest athlete on paper with a time of 2:03.55 and who had led the race from the 30km mark was forced to settle in third place with a time of 2:05.10.
The race course record of 2:03.36 that was set last year by Tokyo marathon Olympic bronze medallist Bashir Abdi from Belgium remains intact.
Kenya’s Stella Barsosio will be heading back to defend her title at the 41st edition of the NN Rotterdam Marathon that will be held on Sunday (10) in Rotterdam, Netherlands.
The 29 year-old comes to this race as the second fastest runner on paper with a personal best of 2:22.08 after taking off one minute twenty five seconds from her previous lifetime best when she won this race last year.
Barsosio will battle for the top honors with Ethiopia’s Haven Hailu who comes to this race with the fastest time on paper of 2:20.19 that she got at the Amsterdam Marathon last year where she took the bronze medal.
Another title contender is the Kenyan-born Bahraini, Rose Chelimo, who is the 2017 World Champion. The 2019 World silver medalist, who is bouncing back from her maternity leave, comes to this race with a personal best of 2:22.51 that she got at the 2017 Boston marathon where she finished in position two.
The deep field of elite athletes that consists of Barsosio, Hailu and Chelimo has been assembled together by the race organisers to try and dismantle the ten year course record of 2:18.58 that was set by Tiki Gelana from Ethiopia.
Netherland’s will put their hopes on the brilliant Nienke Brinkman who surprised many on her debut out of nothing to third place in the Netherlands ranking of all time when she crossed the line in a lifetime best of 2:26.34. Kenyan- Dutch runners, Lornah Kiplagat (2:23.43) and her niece Hilda Kibet (2:24.37) are the only other athletes who have done this on their debut.
The 2011 European U23 10,000m silver medallist, Sara Catarina Costa Pontes Ribeiro from Portugal will also be on the start line as she fights for the top honors. Ribeiro carries on her shoulder a life time best of 2:26.39 that she got at the 2019 Valencia marathon where she finished in eleventh place.
“We are so delighted that we also have a strong field of competitors in the women’s race, including the winner of the previous edition as tradition dictates,” says Remco Barbier, CEO of organiser Golazo Netherlands. “After the overwhelming success of #demooiste in October, we are looking forward to a nail-biting and fast race for the men and women. That should also inspire the tens of thousands of other participants who will appear at the start line with their own targets.’”
Belgium’s Bashir Abdi smashed two records as he beat Marius Kipserem who was billed as the race favorite at the 40th edition of the Rotterdam Marathon that was held on Sunday (24) in Rotterdam, Netherlands.
The Somali-born Belgian athlete who won the bronze medal at the Tokyo Marathon took charge of the race at the 38km and never looked back to surge ahead as he beat the race defending champion, when he smashed the race course record of 2:04.11 that was set in 2019 with a new course record of 2:03.34.
Abdi, also broke the European marathon course record of 2:04.16 that was set in 2019 by Kaan Kigen from Turkey.
Kipserem was forced to settle in second place with a new personal best of 2:04.08
Olympic bronze medallist Bashir Abdi plans to attack the European record while Marius Kipserem will be on the hunt for a hat-trick when the 40th NN Marathon Rotterdam, a World Athletics Elite Label road race, takes place on Sunday (24).
Kenya’s Kipserem broke the course record with 2:04:11 to win in 2019 and he leads the entries, but Belgium’s Abdi, who ran 2:04:49 in Tokyo last year, will be looking to challenge him as he attempts to beat the 2:04:16 run by Kaan Kigen Ozbilen in 2019.
“Rotterdam is the city of the marathon for me,” said Abdi. “If I have any chance of beating the European record anywhere, then it is here, but I will have to do my very best for it.”
Ethiopia’s Solomon Deksisa also has a sub-2:05 PB, having clocked 2:04:40 in Amsterdam in 2018, and they will be joined in Rotterdam by athletes including Emmanuel Saina and Gideon Kipketer of Kenya, who have respective PBs of 2:05:02 and 2:05:51, plus sub-2:07 runners Dawit Wolde, Kebede Wami Tulu and Limenih Getachew Yizengaw of Ethiopia.
Kenya’s Bornes Kitur, who ran her best of 2:21:26 in Ljubljana in 2019, and her compatriot Stella Barsosio feature in the women’s race, with Barsosio looking to go one better than her second place finish in 2019, when she ran her PB of 2:23:36.
They will line up alongside athletes including Ukraine’s Nataliya Lehonkova, Norway’s Runa Skrove Falch and Sweden’s Louise Wiker.
Kenya’s Marius Kipserem will be going for a hat-trick at the 40th edition of the Rotterdam Marathon that will be held on Sunday (24) in Rotterdam, Netherlands.
Kipserem comes to this race as the fastest runner and the race course record holder of 2:04.11 that he set at the 2019 edition.
The 33 year-old will battle for the top honors with the Tokyo marathon bronze medallist Bashir Abdi the somali born now trading for Belgium.
Abdi comes to this race with a personal best of 2:04.49 that he got at the 2020 Tokyo Marathon. The 2018 European silver medallist Champion in 10,000m will be targeting to lower the European marathon record of 2.04.16 that is held by Kaan Kigen Ozbilen from Turkey who had smashed Mo Farah’s previous record of 2:05.11.
Another title contender is Ethiopians Solomon Deksisa who has the second fastest time on paper of 2:04.40 that he got at the 2018 Amsterdam Marathon where he finished in third place.
Kenya will also be represented by Emmanuel Saina who holds a personal best of 2:05.02 that he got at the 2019 Standard Chartered Dubai Marathon and Gideon Kipketer who carries on his shoulder a personal best of 2:05.51 that he got at the 2017 Tokyo Marathon. Ethiopia has three more title contenders that include Dawit Wolde of 2:06.18, Kebede Tulu of 2:06.32 and Limenih Yizengaw of 2:06.47.
This top 8 elite athletes will be joined in the first group by John Langat of 2:07.11, Asefa Tefera Mengisa of 2:07.47, Cyrus Mutai of 2:10.28 and Titus Kipruto of 2:12.43.
The race organisers have put together this top elite athletes to chase and lower the race course record with a good margin.
Kenya’s Bornes Kitur and Stella Barsosio will battle for the top honors at the 40thedition of the Rotterdam Marathon that will be held on Sunday (24) in Rotterdam, Netherlands.
The 33 year-old comes to this race as the fastest runner on paper with a personal best of 2:21.26 that she got at the Ljublana Marathon in 2019.
Kitur who debuted in Rotterdam in 2015 has so far participated in ten marathons and this will be her eleventh.
Barsosio comes to this race with a personal best of 2:23.34 and this will be her eleventh marathon. The 28 year-old will battle for the top honors as she faces her fellow country-mate to try and lower the race course record of 2:18.58 that was set by Tiki Gelana from Ethiopia in 2012.
Other race favorites includes Nataliya Lehonkova from Ukraine who holds a personal best of 2:28.58, Norway’s Runa Skrove Falch of 2:33.52, Sweden’s Louise Wiker carries on her shoulder a time of 2:36.29 and Dutch athletes Jacelyn Gruppen of 2:52.17 and with Marijke Visser making her debut.