Bernhard Kipyego, Sammy Kitwara, Wilson Chebet and Dino Sefir have all signed up to run the 41st TCS Amsterdam Marathon. On Sunday 16 October, these top world athletes will be looking to beat the course record of 2:05:36. Between them, the four African runners should make for a very fast marathon.
Bernhard Kipyego won the last two editions of the TCS Amsterdam Marathon in 2:06:22 and 2:06:19 respectively. On Sunday 16 October he is hoping to make it a hat trick. In previous editions he was nowhere near the course record of 2:05:36 set by his compatriot Wilson Chebet, but this year Kipyego is in top form. He has told the organisers, Le Champion, that he is convinced he’s going to win. “I also aim to lower the course record,” he says. “It’s always great to run in Amsterdam, with so many spectators cheering me on by my nickname ‘Junior’.” Earlier this year Kipyego came second in the Tokyo marathon and the Saucony Egmond Half Marathon.
Wilson Chebet will do everything he can to retain his course record. He will be lining up at the start of the TCS Amsterdam Marathon for the sixth year in a row and is familiar with every bend in the fast course. When he won the marathon in 2011, 2012 and 2013 he was nicknamed ‘Mister Amsterdam’. He has improved his course record three times. So far this year his best performance is 61:35 in the New York half marathon, where he finished second.
The two Amsterdam Marathon old-timers will have to fend off Sammy Kitwara and Dino Sefir, both of whom have run marathons in less than 2 hours and 5 minutes.
29-year-old Sammy Kitwara has an impressive string of victories under his belt. The Kenyan ran his personal best for the marathon distance in Chicago in 2015, finishing second in 2:04:28. He has also won many 10 kilometre and half marathon races. His most recent triumph was in Lisbon, where he won the half marathon in 59:47. He has yet to add a full distance marathon title to his CV, so in Amsterdam the Kenyan will be going all out to win.
Dino Sefir has big plans for his return to the capital of the Netherlands. The Ethiopian dropped out of the TCS Amsterdam Marathon in 2014 due to illness and is determined to make a strong comeback. “In Amsterdam I want to run 2:05 and win,” he says. He ran his personal best in Dubai in 2012, finishing second in 2:04:50. He has already tasted victory this year, having won the Barcelona and Ottawa marathons.
For more information about the TCS Amsterdam Marathon visit TCSAmsterdam.com.