Nairobi — Kenya's Titus Ekiru ran the fastest ever marathon in Italy on Sunday, clocking 2:02:57 as he successfully defended his Milano Marathon title in a new course record time.
This is the fifth fastest marathon of all time.
Ekiru, the African Games Half Marathon champion reduced almost two minutes off his time when he won the race for the first time in 2019, clocking 2:04:46.
Compatriot Rueben Kiprop finished second in a time of 2:03:55 while Barnabas Kiptum finished off a Kenyan Podium sweep after coming in third with a time of 2:04:17.
"From the 20km mark, I was feeling good and I said I would push a bit till the 30km mark. We tried to push with my friend Rueben and at the 35km mark, I decided to increase the pace a bit to see if I can get a good time," Ekiru, also the reigning Honolulu Marathon champion stated.
He added; "I feel happy with the time and now I want to go and rest then make a strategy with my coach again. I believe I can even run 2:01."
Ekiru cleared the first 10km in 29:29 and it was evident that the race was headed for a fast finish. He kept the push and with 2km left, he was on 1:56:39 and a new personal best was clearly on the horizon.
Meanwhile, Ethiopia's Hiwot Gebrekidan won the women's race in a time of 2:19:35, also the fastest women's race ever run in Italy and a new world lead while Kenyan Racheal Jemutai finished second in 2:22:50.