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London Marathon 2012: Mary Keitany Proves She Is a Lock for Olympic Gold

Richard Langford@@noontide34Correspondent IApril 22, 2012

LONDON, ENGLAND - APRIL 22:  Mary Keitany of Kenya celebrates winning the Womens Elite race during the Virgin London Marathon 2012 on April 22, 2012 in London, England.  (Photo by Matthew Lewis/Getty Images)
Matthew Lewis/Getty Images

Kenya’s Mary Keitany is going to win the gold medal in the women's marathon at the 2012 Summer Olympics

She is at the peak of her abilities, and she loves running in London. Both of these facts were on vivid display for the world to see at the last two London Marathons

Keitany has now won this event two straight years, and her performance in this year's event cemented her status as the Olympic favorite. 

She won the race with a time of 2:18:37. That time broke a Kenyan national record that had stood for over a decade—Catherine Ndereba ran the Chicago marathon in 2:18:47 in 2001. 

While the time is obviously impressive, what is really telling is the way that she ran the race.

Keitany and 2011 world champion Edna Kiplagat broke away from the field by the 22nd mile. And at that point, Keitany decided to leave her in the dust.

She ran a 5:07 23rd mile to put some distance between her and Kiplagat, and that was just the beginning. She turned in a 4:59 24th mile to win the race.

That is a remarkable time for any mile, let alone the closing stretch of the race. That closing kick not only won her the race, but it destroyed the confidence of all of her competitors and announced her as the clear favorite for the upcoming Olympics.

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