Home » Record man against “late bloomer”: Vienna Marathon 2024 brings Austrian duel – Marathon Vienna

Record man against “late bloomer”: Vienna Marathon 2024 brings Austrian duel – Marathon Vienna

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Record man against “late bloomer”: Vienna Marathon 2024 brings Austrian duel – Marathon Vienna

From . – April 19, 2024 1:24 p.m. (act. April 19, 2024 3:10 p.m.)

Herzog (left) and Bauernfeind two days before the Vienna City Marathon. ©APA/EVA MANHART

Mario Bauernfeind and Peter Herzog both want to be the first Austrian to cross the finish line at the 2024 Vienna Marathon.

The Vienna City Marathon on Sunday will once again be dedicated to the hunt for a new men’s distance record. The Ethiopian Chala Regasa as well as Bethwell Yegon and Felix Kibitok from Kenya could advance into the 2:05:08 range if the race goes ideally. In the duel for status as the best Austrian in the expected time frame of 2:13 to 2:15, Bauernfeind has the advantage because ÖLV record holder Herzog was slowed down by illness at the beginning of April.

Herzog wants to land at VCM ahead of Bauernfeind

“The immediate preparation was not optimal, but I will still give it my all. My goal is to become the best Austrian. We won’t give ourselves anything away,” said Herzog on Friday. For him, after a very difficult phase with injuries and illnesses, the VCM is an important intermediate step and piece of the puzzle so that in the fall he can be able to achieve times similar to his ÖLV record of 2:10:06 from 2020.

In the end, the focus for the Salzburg player was more on finding joy again. “I had almost lost my love for running. It’s no secret that the last one and a half or two years have been very mixed. But I’ve rediscovered the joy. Back to the origins, that’s exactly why I’m here again,” emphasized the 36-year-old . His viral infection at the beginning of the month dampened expectations somewhat, but that did not dampen his joy. “I definitely want to run the full marathon and enjoy the experience to the fullest.”

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Vienna Marathon with “late bloomer” Bauernfeind

Bauernfeind’s momentum after improving to 2:12:49 last October in Frankfurt was slowed by illness over the winter. But the last three months of training were promising, as the police officer, family man and self-described “late bloomer” explained. “I’ve had eleven very good weeks now. I think I’ve come very close to the form I had last autumn, and we’ll know for sure on Sunday.”

The 33-year-old feels well prepared for the first full marathon in his hometown, including the duel with Herzog. “I just want to do a great performance in front of the home crowd. My big goal is certainly to become the best Austrian. I’m definitely prepared and we’ll have a great fight,” said Bauernfeind. He is calm about the expected late winter conditions. Rather, he is happy that there will be no heat.

Vienna is no stranger to Regasa

The single-digit temperatures and the quite annoying north wind are also keeping the African aces busy. But you don’t want to let this stop you from achieving top times and, ideally, from setting a new course record. Regasa already ran 2:06:11 in Rotterdam in April 2023, and his second marathon should be even faster. “I’m not here to hold back. The cold weather is good because you need less energy. I like running in such temperatures,” said the Ethiopian. He already knows parts of the route from his role as pacemaker for Eliud Kipchoge in his 1:59 “laboratory race” in 2019.

Yegon, who came second in Vienna last year in just under 2:07, wants to use his knowledge of the entire route. “Anything is possible. I want to improve my personal best of 2:06:14. If the weather is right and the pacemakers do a good job, we will try for the course record,” said the Kenyan. His compatriot Kibitok agreed: “If everything fits, maybe we can run the course record.”

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