News Archive

News Archive

A great festival of running and one superstar: Paul Tergat

A number of records have already been broken before the start of the 30th

real,- BERLIN MARATHON, which will be a big festival of running. In time for

the jubilee race there are two major changes: The finish will be at Brandenburg

Gate, Germanys most famous landmark. A record number of 44.931 athletes from 91

nations have entered the race, which is Germanys most prestigious road race.

35,000 runners, 193 walkers and 126 wheelchair athletes will all start their

races on Sunday morning (runners and walkers at 9 am, wheelchairs at 8.45 am)

on Straße des 17. Juni. Additionally the 30th real,- BERLIN MARATHON will

be a true two day event for the first time, since 9,612 inline skaters will

start their race on Saturday at 4 pm on Straße des 17. Juni. Berlin will

have the biggest skater marathon in the world. Additionally 6,700 children will

participate in the real,- MINI MARATHON on Sunday. This race will be started at

8.50 am at Potsdamer Platz. The finish will be at the Brandenburg Gate as well.

So all together even 51,631 athletes will compete at the event.

“With our new course we will present Berlin to the world“, race

organiser Horst Milde said. While the new route has kept the sights of the

former course like Kurfürstendamm with the

Kaiser-Wilhelm-Gedächtniskirche, there are more landmarks included now:

The Bundeskanzleramt (seat of the German chancellor), the Reichstag, which

houses the German parliament or the Gendarmenmarkt are some examples.

There is also good news for the serious and elite runners: the new course

will be as flat and fast as the old one was. It was in Berlin where Naoko

Takahashi (Japan) became the first woman to break the 2:20 barrier. In 2001 the

Olympic Champion ran 2:19:46. To have another world record at the jubilee race

would is a dream for the organisers. And it is the aim for this years top

entrant: Paul Tergat, Kenyans running hero has chosen the real,- BERLIN

MARATHON for an attempt at the world record.

The 34-year-old Kenyan is already the second fastest marathon runner in

history. But although he has run 2:05:48 minutes, which is only ten seconds

away from the world record, Tergat has never won a marathon so far. He has run

five marathons before, getting three second and two fourth places.

Clearly Paul Tergat is the fastest runner ever to start in the real,- BERLIN

MARATHON. He still holds the world record for the half marathon with 59:17 and

has hold the 10,000 m world record (26:27,85 minutes) in 1997. Paul Tergat, who

has won a record five World Cross Country Championships from 1995 to 1999, has

become famous for his great races against Haile Gebrselassie.

In his chase for a world record Paul Tergat will have strong company. Also

entered is his training compatriot Raymond Kipkoech. He will start with the

number 1 as the Kenyan has won the real,- BERLIN MARATHON last year in a superb

time of 2:06:47. Among the pacemakers will be another of Tergats training

partners, Boniface Usisivu. The Kenyan was fourth in last years real,- BERLIN

MARATHON in 2:07:50.

In comparison the womens race will not be as strong as the mens.

Unfortunately hopes for a German win have been dashed a week before the start.

Sonja Oberem (Bayer Leverkusen), who was third in last years European

Championships, has had to withdraw due to injury. Kathrin Weßel, whose

club is SCC Berlin, which is behind the organisation of the real,- BERLIN

MARATHON, will run this race for the third time in a row. Last year she became

the German champion and the year before she was third with a personal best of

2:28:27. She hopes to run another personal best in Berlin but should be no

contender for first place.

Instead there is a chance for Japan to make it four in a row after victories

for Kazumi Matsuo and Naoko Takahashi (2001 and 2002). Yasuko Hashimoto could

be in to continue the win streak. But there are a number of others to watch:

Alina Ivanova (Russia), the former world walking champion who turned to running

after being disqualified in the Olympics 1992 after crossing the line first,

Renata Paradowska (Poland) or Ornella Ferrara (Italy). Liz Yelling could be in

for a surprise. The British runner will run her debut in Berlin. She is a

training partner of Paula Radcliffe.