First Marathon Under Two Hours

First Marathon Under Two Hours
September 30, 2030 – Yesterday the 20-year-old Ethiopian wonderchild Demeke Retta took his first victory in the Berlin Marathon and became the first man under two hours ever! The new record is one hour 59 minutes 47 seconds.

This was Demeke’s third victory in a major marathon of only five starts and he was of course very happy: “I knew I had the race with two kilometers left, but I wasn’t sure to break the record, it’s incredible!” The temperature was ideal, increasing from ten degrees Celsius at the start to 17 at the finish.

Demeke was helped by the tough pace set by South African Peter Radebe, who opened the first half in 60:12 minutes, but finished second on personal best 2:00:32. “I wasn’t that worried since I felt very strong today and had decided to do my own race from the start”, said Demeke and commended Peter for a great race.

Both Peter and Demeke beat the previous record set in Rotterdam Marathon three years ago of 2:00:54. The Marathon world record has progressed from the Australian Derek Clayton to be the first under 2:10 in 1969, and Paul Tergat from Kenya to go under 2:05 in 2003, to now be under two hours.


Argument: According to the study Mathematical analysis of running performance and world running records by Francois Peronnet and Guy Thibault, the Marathon world record will be under two hours in year 2030.

Questions: Humans can’t improve world records indefinitely, and according to Peronnet and Thibault it is physical impossible for a man to run a marathon faster than 1:48:25. What will happen to world record sports when we get close to the ultimate limit?