World marathon record holder and reigning Olympic marathon champion Eliud Kipchoge is ready to defend his title and was excited to run in the city of Sapporo, where the event is slated to take place next month.
Kipchoge, the only man to run the distance in under two hours, is one of the stars of the Tokyo games and his race on August 8 is one of the most anticipated battles at this year’s Olympics.
The Kenyan great said recently that defending his Olympic crown will be his highest achievement and that he was still hungry to compete on the biggest stage and win medals.
“I have completed my training and I am really excited to race in Sapporo. For me, there is no greater race than competing for an Olympic medal. In Japan, I will defend my title from Rio, to win a second Olympic medal in the marathon would mean the world to me” noted Kipchoge
The marathon was moved to the northern Japanese city of Sapporo due to concerns over Tokyo, where the temperature during the summer months can exceed 30 degrees Celsius (86°F), with high humidity adding to the discomfort.
He remains a favourite to repeat as Olympic champion, but his cloak of invincibility was pierced slightly after he suffered a rare defeat in October’s London marathon.
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The 36-year old had previously won 10 straight races. The loss sparked speculation about whether he could be beaten at the Tokyo Games.