Brigid Kosgei and Ruth Chepngetich will follow in Eliud Kipchoge’s footsteps by wearing controversial trainers in London Marathon
Women’s marathon world record holder Brigid Kosgei and reigning world champion Ruth Chepngetich have confirmed they will use the controversial shoes worn by Eliud Kipchoge in the London Marathon on Sunday.
Kipchoge became the first person to break the two-hour barrier in an unofficial event in Vienna last October while wearing the platform Alphafly Next% shoes.
The record led to calls for the Nike shoes to be banned, although Kosgei insists it is the runner rather than the shoes which make the difference.
Although the shoes are within World Athletics’ regulations, they are also estimated to improve running economy by five to eight per cent.
When asked which shoes she would be wearing in Sunday’s London Marathon, Kosgei said: “The ones Kipchoge will use.
“You know the shoes could not run. It is someone who can run, it’s not the shoes, it does not depend on the shoes.”
She added: “If I use the training shoes and the body is not there, you cannot run good. So for me it’s just the body (which enables me) to run good, it is not the shoes.”
Kosgei’s rival and fellow Kenyan, reigning world champion Ruth Chepngetich also confirmed she would be wearing the controversial trainers.
Kenya’s Brigid Kosgei said she just wants to try her best at the London Marathon on Sunday (Bob Martin for London Marathon/PA)
The pair admitted their training had been interrupted by the Covid-19 pandemic, with their respective training camps in Kenya both closed temporarily, leaving the pair having to resort to individual efforts.
At the Chicago Marathon in October last year, Kosgei set a new world record with a time of 2:14:04, however because of the disruption she will not be targeting a new time on Sunday.
When asked about her training, Kosgei said: “It’s just the summer, because we did not get a group like last year, (when) we are in groups together we just had to push each other. So it’s not like in Chicago – but I will try.”
She added: “You know due to this pandemic I cannot say I will run this and this because the coronavirus affects us so that we didn’t do a lot of training – enough – like last year.
“And there I ran before Covid-19, so I want to try my best only on Sunday.”