Eliud Kipchoge to attempt breaking two-hour marathon barrier

28th April 2019, London, England; The 2019 Virgin London Marathon; Eliud Kipchoge of Kenya finishes in 1st place in the Men's Elite (Photo by John Patrick Fletcher/Action Plus via Getty Images)
LONDON, ENGLAND – APRIL 28: Eliud Kipchoge of Kenya crosses the line to win the Men’s Elite race during the 2019 Virgin Money London Marathon in the United Kingdom on April 28, 2019 in London, England. (Photo by Naomi Baker/Getty Images)

Kenya’s marathon world record holder Eliud Kipchoge is set to make another attempt at running under two hours for the marathon later in 2019.

The attempt, termed as the “INEOS 1.59 Challenge”, is likely to be held in September or October at a venue and on a date yet to be confirmed. It is part of a project supported by Jim Ratcliffe, Britain’s richest person and owner of chemical firm INEOS.

The time, however, will be un-ratified as the Kenyan will use several pacemakers who will run a number of laps, moving in and out so that they can maintain the required two minutes and 50 seconds per km pace.

Kipchoge’s first attempt at breaking the two-hour marathon barrier was spearheaded by Nike. Kipchoge clocked two hours and 25 seconds in the “Breaking2” project on Italy’s Monza motor racing circuit in 2017.

The time was not ratified for record purposes due to certain factors such as using in and out pacemakers and a moving drinks station.

Kipchoge, the reigning Olympic marathon champion, holds the two fastest times in marathon history. He set the record of 2:01.39 set at the Berlin Marathon in 2017 and ran the second-fastest time after he won the 2019 London Marathon in 2:02.37.

Social media users took to Twitter to post messages of encouragement to Kipchoge after he announced the fresh attempt at breaking the barrier.


Ratcliffe pledged to give Kipchoge every support he needs as he aims to witness sporting history.