ROAD NEWS: London Marathon - Women's Running Roundup 22/04/2019


I’m sorry it has taken me so long to publish the roundup this week but I’ll be honest, my brain and life has been in post race recovery mode as well as my legs. You know what it’s like - you drove and drive for months and once it’s over, you just need to take your foot off the gas for a moment. So, I’ve been consuming all the other roundups and never quite getting around to this, but I’m here now! Enjoy…


Elite Race

So, as you can see from the above issu, I ran London myself this weekend. I have to admit that I was as excited, if not more excited about the results I saw written up on a flipchart as I crossed the line as I was about finishing. I just wanted to know how it all played out and couldn’t wait to get home to watch! Here’s the headlines:



Brigid Kosgei ran the fastest ever second half of a marathon in 66:42. That’s 1 hour 6 minutes and 2 seconds. I can’t even comprehend that. Not only that but she ran 4:56 negative split. You could see that she was in control as she surged once to get a good lead over Vivian Cheruiyot but then having been reeled in, with Cheruiyot level again at 20miles, she had the wherewithal to surge again and leave her behind and finish with a convincing gap of 1:54. In my pre-race predictions I put great store in the fact that Mary Keitany who had previously been known for her blistering starts and subsequent fall-off had finally run a super smart race in New York going conservatively at the past and then dropping the hammer for what was then the world fastest ever marathon second half. However, that appears not to have been the magic bullet I’d anticipated as she stuck with the conservative pack at the start this time and then couldn’t get back to more than 5th place.

Cheruiyot, who ran a 2:18:30 PB in a very hot race in London last year for the win (9s slower than this year’s winning time) is now 3rd in the Abbott World Major rankings, with 32 points. Kosgei has leapt ahead into 1st with 50 points and Ruti Aga sits in second with 40. There’s just Berlin next September left to run in this edition of the series so Cheruiyot and Aga would have to get 1st or 2nd there and Kosgei would have to get nothing if the winner is to change.

Charlotte Purdue (GB) ran the biggest PB (3:45) and secured herself 10th place, a spot at the World Marathon champs in Doha and 3rd place on the all-time GB rankings. Aside from that though, it was just a great race from here. Well executed and a great example of hard work paying off and deserves the top plaudits from the GB press. You may have seen much of the story of Hayley Carruthers (see here) is indeed more media friendly, but her and her coach would rather the focus is elsewhere. This blog explains well why they are not happy with her result., On top of that, it seems a shame that only extreme examples make the headlines. It makes sport seem like the preserve of weirdo’s or superhumans rather than something that others can do if they just keep on plugging away. Anyway… I’ll get off my soap box now.

Charlotte’s training partner Sinead Diver (AUS) ran a storming race, taking it out on her own terms and the start and not taking part in the slow-pace (!) tactics of the rest of the pack. She clearly has a time in mind and went for it. I’d love to hear what her coach thought.

Emily Sisson ran a smoking first marathon to place 6th and beat her training partner Molly Huddle. Molly had a tough race but had to gut it out to to see it through for an Olympic Trials Qualfying Time. As Runners World notes here ,“Sisson has proven her versatility in recent months with a 67:30 half marathon in Houston and a 10K PR in Stanford (30:49.57), and she appears to have many options as she now looks to the future.” Others have commented, and I have to agree, that Sisson probably has a lot to thank Huddle for in training to this kind of level. Must be cold comfort for Molly though.


You can find the full spreadsheet of joy with all of this data for the entire elite field here but the top 10 is below:

London placingRank by PBUp from rank by PB? FirstLastCountryAgeLondon time1st half2nd halfNeg / PosPlus or minus PB (where minus is a new PB)
22 VivianCheruiyotKEN352:20:141:11:381:08:36-0:03:020:01:43
43 GladysCheronoKEN352:20:521:11:401:09:12-0:02:280:02:41
51 MaryKeitanyKEN372:20:591:11:401:09:19-0:02:210:03:58
813Carla SalomeRochaPOR282:24:471:12:101:12:370:00:27-0:00:40
96 BirhaneDibabaETH252:25:041:11:391:13:250:01:460:05:13

Mass Start

Because the men’s elite start is only a few moments ahead of the mass start you sometimes get non-elites breaking through. However, the women’s race much more seperate, since the start is 40min apart. So, here are the interesting bits from the mass start and the top 10 below

1st on the mass start went to Mikaela Larsson of Sweden. The winner of the 2017&18 Stockholm marathon does talk about having some of the elite trappings in here instagram post.


Perhaps the most exciting though is Steph Savis of Clapham Chasers. Steph ran 2:32:32 - a near 10min PB from Berlin last year. She ran a 10k PB of 33:42 earlier this year and did her final bit of training in Malawi. It’ll be exciting to see if she get’s an elite place next year given that Hayley Carruthers ran 2:33 in 2018 and was rewarded with a spot this year.

3rd place went to Julia Roman-Duval. Julia is an astrophysicist at the Space Telescope Science Institute in Baltimore, She’s focused on competitive running since 2014 but before that she was a competitive triathlete

Also worth noting - Johanna O’Regan of St Neots Riverside Runners, UK ran 2:48:55 having placed 3rd in Brighton Marathon (2:49:38) and 3rd in Manchester Marathon (2:42:15 )earlier both of which were earlier this month.

Mass start results:
Shows name, country, club, half way split, finish time

  1. Larsson, Mikaela (SWE) 01:14:59 // 02:31:32

  2. Davis, Stephanie (GBR), Clapham Chasers, 01:16:57 // 02:32:38 (@steph_davis26)

  3. Roman-Duval, Julia (FRA) 01:18:03 //02:37:15

  4. Gyurko, Fanni (HUN), Central Athletic Club 01:17:05 // 02:38:47

  5. Basil, Rochelle (NZL), Belgrave Harriers, 01:19:39 // 02:39:07

  6. Small, Louise (GBR), Aldershot Farnham & District 01:17:45 // 02:39:43

  7. Ortiz, Angela (USA), 01:19:47 // 02:39:50

  8. Grima, Claire (GBR), Hercules Wimbledon, 01:18:39 // 02:40:38

  9. Yanko, Devon (USA), Serpentine RC, 01:18:36 // 02:42:04

  10. Urrutia, Lujan (ARG), 01:19:12 // 02:42:06

Full results:


  1. D’Ann ARTHUR 2:48:39

  2. Tyler STEWART 2:56:37

  3. Danielle WIDENMANN 3:01:21

  4. Frankie BRILLANTE 3:02:25

  5. Karen SOBRINO 3:04:33


  1. Margo MALONE USA 2:42:22

  2. Claudia BERNASCONI SUI 2:46:15

  3. Akmaral MEIRMAN KAZ 2:46:25


Aims-running reportsIn contrast to the men, Dibabe Kuma ran away from her rivals soon after halfway. Although slowing in the second half the Ethiopian clocked the sixth fastest time ever run in Hamburg of 2:24:41 despite wet and cold weather. Kenya’s Magdalyne Masai was second with 2:26:02 while Failuna Matanga of Tanzania finished third in 2:27:55.’

  1. Dibabe KUMA ETH 2:24:41

  2. Magdalyne MASAI KEN 2:26:02

  3. Failuna MATANGA TAN 2:27:55

  4. Veronica NYARUAI KEN 2:29:14

  5. Hanna LINDHOLM SWE 2:29:34

Write up here:


There’s an interesting conversation on Twitter about the role of the Nike 4% shoes in the London Marathon. I finally succumbed to the hype and bought some and felt surprisingly guilty about it. Read this thread below to see some thought provoking points about the ways different sports approach technology


Sorry… I’m all done, but here’s the race that are on the 5th May: