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  • Not That Much Different...

    When Kipchoge ran 1:59:40, the aspects of the run that made it ineligible for record purposes were:
    1. Not an open competition
    2. Race not held on a specific day, day was chosen on short notice to optimize conditions
    3. Pacers rotating in and out the whole distance
    4. Pacers handing him bottles
    5. Pace car

    Did I miss anything? The course was record eligible.

    I would submit the follow:
    1 and 2. One of the major marathons could provide conditions that negate these factors. The second half of EK's recent Berlin race was essentially a "closed" competition, no one was close to him. And Berlin and London can both have very good weather for marathon racing.
    3. I'll come back to this one.
    4. EK effectively has someone handing him bottles in similar fashion to the Ineos crew, that dude on a bike that got a lot of attention this year.
    5. The most recent world records in the track distance events were set with the "help" of pacing lights. Tell me how that differs from the car that drove in front of EK during Ineos and projected a light on the road. It's exactly the same, provided the car doesn't break the wind for the runner. There would be no reason to disqualify a marathon record on that basis while accepting the pacing lights on the track.

    My point is that the Ineos run was not really very far off from a record attempt at a Berlin or London. The litany of assists that EK received in 2018 are really negligible four years later, and I'm waiting for a race director to put a car out in front with a projector.

    That's leaves # 3, which is, to my mind, the only real difference, and yes it's a decent one. Even with a pacing light from a car, running alone the last half of a marathon is tough, and having two or three guys out running in front of you like they do in the first half has got to be a significant help. Right now EK will have to run his last hour alone.


  • #2
    Originally posted by Steele View Post
    It's exactly the same, provided the car doesn't break the wind for the runner.
    That part is questionable. I'm not sure the car consistently stayed far enough away to avoid affecting the wind resistance felt by the runners.

    To ensure that the pace vehicle wouldn't have any drafting effect, they should use something much smaller than a car, like an electric bicycle, and have it travel beside the runners instead of in front. Or use a toy-sized remote-controlled car.
    Last edited by 18.99s; 10-04-2022, 11:37 AM.

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    • #3
      I like it! Or a drone?

      The "off to the side" idea reminds me of a fake rabbit in a greyhound race. How degrading is that.

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      • #4
        Originally posted by Steele View Post
        I like it! Or a drone?

        The "off to the side" idea reminds me of a fake rabbit in a greyhound race. How degrading is that.
        The Berlin marathon had motorcycle cops and other guys on bicycles riding to the side of the elite runners. That wasn't degrading; that's standard practice in many marathons.

        A cyclist or motorcyclist would have to be off to the side to avoid helping the lead runners break the wind. But a toy-sized remote-controlled car could be in front of them.

        A drone shining down on the road in front of the lead runners could be another option, if it would fly high enough for its noise to be negligible on the ground, and if they make sure it doesn't crash into any overhead cables, bridges, signs, or trees along the course.

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        • #5
          Thank you for the analysis, Steele. I think you covered it well. One of the biggest takeaways, I think, for Kipchoge was the knowledge that he could go through the hallway point in sub 1-hour and still complete the marathon. That enabled him to do it in Berlin, and although he didn't run a sub 2, anyone else on the planet would have been happy running the second half of a marathon in 1:01:18.

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          • #6
            I've run a few marathons and just can't believe how fast two hours for a marathon is. Of course I was pretty slow, but I know what it feels like to finish a marathon under three hours. These athletes are super-human.

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            • #7
              Originally posted by DoubleRBar View Post
              These athletes are super-human.
              Amen to that.
              I was not a distance runner and have never run a marathon but fifty years ago my Sunday run was the Oklahoma City Marathon course, two laps around Lake Hefner plus about 200 yards. My wife would pace me on her bicycle. My PB was about 1:15 for one lap. I could/cannot imagine continuing for another lap....or another step.

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              • #8
                That's why track & field competition is so good. Young athletes can vision running under two hours for a marathon, jumping over 20 feet in the pole vault, or throwing a javelin over 300 feet. Older athletes can still compete, however their goals are a bit lower. They can vision running a mile under ten minutes, jumping over 20 feet in the triple jump, or throwing a discus over 60 feet. There's something for everyone.

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by DoubleRBar View Post
                  I've run a few marathons and just can't believe how fast two hours for a marathon is.
                  For most people, Kipchoge's marathon pace is a sprint. Remember that giant treadmill where people struggled to maintain his world record pace for a short time? https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SRYtn0j5ccA

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