Since 1981, London has closed its roads once a year so thousands can partake in a 26.2 mile run and today saw a record number attempt it.
40,382 runners and walkers crossed the start line in this year’s eventful London Marathon, beating the previous record from last year by 1,242.
Notably, Mary Keitany broke the women’s world record for the marathon, crossing the finish line in two hours, seventeen minutes, and one second, surpassing Paula Radcliffe’s previously held record. Keitany, a 35-year-old Kenyan, beat Radcliffe’s record by forty-one seconds.
24-year-old Daniel Wanjiru, also from Kenya, was the winner of the men’s race. He finished in two hours, five minutes, and fifty-six seconds, according to the BBC.
Many other records were broken, with thirty-nine Guinness World Records being set. One of those went to Rebecca Cesar de Sa, who became the fastest finisher in film character costume. Another went to a group of five dressed as Scooby Doo characters, making them the fastest marathon runners wearing a five-person costume.
Rebecca Cesar de Sa. Photo credit: Virgin Money London Marathon website
Josh Griffiths from the Swansea Harriers running club was another winner in the marathon. Griffiths was the first British runner to cross the finish line, with a time of two hours, fourteen minutes, and twenty-four seconds, according to the Guardian. Overtaking many elite runners, Griffiths snagged himself a spot on the British team of the world athletics championship in August.
Josh Griffiths. Photo credit: Andrew Redington/Getty Images, via the Guardian
Another member of the Swansea Harriers running club, Matthew Rees, selflessly halted as he was nearing the finish line to assist another runner, David Wyeth, who’s legs began to buckle. According to the Telegraph, Rees told the Press Association, ‘This is more important, getting him across the line is more important than shaving a few seconds off my time.’
The Chippenham Harriers had 19 members complete the London Marathon and they told Elliot’s News that their membership has been steadily increasing over the past few years.
With the popularity of the London Marathon increasing, next year’s race is sure to be just as – if not more – eventful than this year’s race.