NAIROBI, Jan. 13 (Xinhua) -- World marathon record-holder Brigid Kosgei will return to the London Marathon in April to defend her title.
Kosgei broke Paula Radcliffe's 16-year-old marathon world record in Chicago last October by winning at an incredible time of 2:14:04. The record-breaking run came six months after the 25-year-old had won in London for the first time.
Now with eyes on the Tokyo Olympics in August, Kosgei has penciled in the London race to gauge her preparedness.
"I am looking forward to returning to the London marathon. Last year was an incredible year for me and it started by winning in London. Coming back will be very special and I hope it can be the start of another memorable year," Kosgei, the fastest female marathon runner in history, said on Monday.
Kosgei will have to battle it out with the same rivals she obliterated in 2019 including the 2018 champion Vivian Cheruiyot, three-time Berlin marathon winner Gladys Cherono, Valencia marathon champion Roza Dereje of Ethiopia, the current world champion Ruth Chepngetich and the 2019 New York City Marathon champion Joyciline Jepkosgei.
The London marathon will be contested on April 26.
London is part of the World Marathon Majors (WMM) Series, with Jepkosgei joint top of the leaderboard alongside Kosgei and Chepngetich. The other races take place in Boston, Berlin, Chicago, New York and Tokyo.
Spencer Barden, head of Elite Athletes at the London marathon, said they are happy to have brought together the top women runners for the 2020 race.
"We have assembled world-class elite women led by defending champion Kosgei. It is a mouth-watering prospect to see what she can do on her return to the London marathon. But there are plenty of other fantastic athletes in the field including former winner Cheruiyot and the world champion Ruth Chepngetich," Barden said.
The men's elite team will be announced on Tuesday.