no Kipchoge is limited wrote:
Ben Jipcho wrote:
At this point, Kipchoge's confidence is at an all time high. His race strategy going forward will be different. I foresee him employ a strategy similar to the one Geoffrey Kamworor employed last year during the world half marathon championships where Kamworor let others lead only for him to take off in the last 7K or so. For Kipchoge, he will probably take off with 20K or 15K and tear the field down. If he could run 60:33 in the last half of his World Record race, I don't see him having any problem running faster than that with a slower fast half. He might even produce the first ever sub 60 mins second half in the marathon.
I don't think I agree with this - I think Kipchoge will continue racing as he has, because he's already perfected the art. I think that London will still hype up a fast time, and I don't think it worries Eliud at all to go out at a reasonable pace, so I would be pretty surprised to see them much above 61:40 through halfway (assuming conditions are normal). It's already scary to think of the kind of second half Kipchoge could put up after opening in 61:40. It's unbelievable that you can say "He might even produce the first ever sub 60 second half" without hyperbole, but that's where we are. If they opened in 62:15-62:45 we very well could see an unreal second half.
But like I said I somewhat doubt the race will go like that - even though no one can compete with Kipchoge right now it's not like people don't try for at least the first 20k. Of course at this point fellow racers probably only slow him down. I'm hoping Eliud gets his 2:02 in London.
My point is not without a good reason. While Kipchoge finally has put the world record too far to almost unreachable level, he is not unwise to forget the two experiences from Berlin 2017 and London 2018 where Guye Adola and Sura Kitata respectively stuck to his heels like glue, giving him the scare of his life. The only solution to this strategy(using others as pacers) by Ethiopians is to produce a sudden surge and maintain it to the end. The sudden surge produces a sudden gap which in effects delinks you from the Ethiopians. If Kipchoge could shift the gears lets say from 4:40 to 4:20 then stablize it at 4:30 for the next 3 or 4 miles, the Ethiopians will be swept by the wind and their confidence gone. That is why I believe Kipchoge will not push the first half but save it for the last half or last 15K of the race. He doesn't want to let it too late also because you never know how fast these guys could be. 21K to 15K are within his strength and can make adjustments depending on what develops during the race. Racing too fast often over the marathon tears up the muscles and will result in immature end to one's career.