The London Marathon is set to take place on October 4th, 2020 in a secure biosphere as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic. The organizers describe it as a contained safe environment like that of Formula 1 and football match, which will lock out fans and amateurs leaving it for elite-only.
This year’s men’s race will be a face-off between Kenya’s reigning world champion Eliud Kipchoge vs Ethiopia’s champion Kenenisa Bekele. Kenya has won the London marathon 14 times from 2004 till 2019 losing only two times to Ethiopia. Sections of the fans renamed it the Kenyan Marathon in London. The times recorded in London will be eligible for the Tokyo 2020 Olympic qualification.
Bekele is set to challenge Kipchoge on this elite race and critics seem to be backing him up for a number of reasons. Kipchoge smashed the sub-two historic barrier, what more could he want? Bekele recorded a 2:01:41 that is 2 seconds shy of Kipchoge’s 2018 world record. With no pace setters, Bekele is as fast as Kipchoge especially on the last mile of a race, that is how he edged out Mo Farah.
Sir Mo Farah is the presumed pacesetter at the elite men’s race this year. Organizers are yet to announce the elite field sizes and how the races will be set off, but it has been confirmed that athletes will cross the same traditional finish line on The Mall after completing 19.8 laps of the St James’s Park course.
There will be no spectator access in order to maintain the biosphere, but BBC plans to broadcast eight hours of coverage during the day.