There have been few marathons in the last couple of years that have exercised opinions or attracted as much attention as Nikes breaking2 attempt at Monza last Saturday. Rarely does a marathon result register in the mainstream media in the same way that Eliud Kipchoge’s 2:00:24 did.
One of the most interesting things about it though is not how close he came to breaking that elusive 2 hour barrier rather that it divided opinion so much amongst runners.
Ask most runners what they think about how how some of the biggest marathons in the world, London or Boston or were raced or won this year they probably wouldn’t have an answer. Ask them who had stood on the top step of the podium and they also couldn’t tell you.
Ask them what their thoughts were on Nikes Breaking2 attempt and you are almost guaranteed to get an answer that is either gushing excitement at how close they came to making history or a negative reaction that it was just a marketing stunt, wasn’t a real marathon or that the use of pacers or some other factor was all wrong and against the ethos of the sport. Either way most have an opinion and are at least aware that it took place.