Part Nike marketing stunt, part science experiment, part spectacle of athletic greatness, three world class distance runners — Zersene Tadese, world-record holder for the half marathon, Lelisa Desisa, two-time Boston Marathon champion, and Olympic marathon gold medalist Eliud Kipchoge who ran last year’s London Marathon in 2:03:05 — attempted to run 26.2 miles in under two hours.
Ultimately it came down to Kipchoge, surrounded by a team of pacers, chasing a pace car around an Italian Formula One race track as the clock approached 120 minutes, then missing the goal by a mere 25 seconds.
But alas, the Breaking2 experiment was not without controversy. Some of the more controversial aspects included:
- No post-race drug-testing
- The specially designed Nike shoes for the event
- The pace car acted as a windbreak for the entire distance
- The track was almost completely flat with no turns
- The teams of pacers jumping in and out of the race
- It’s a barrier only men can break
Did you watch Breaking2 or follow the coverage? How do you see it: good or bad for the sport of running or somewhere in between? What do you think is the equivalent barrier to sub-two hours for the women’s marathon?
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