By Riath Al-samarrai for The Mail on Sunday
Published: 23:03 BST, 3 October 2020 | Updated: 23:35 BST, 3 October 2020
But can he do it on a wet Sunday in a posh part of London? That is possibly the last remaining mystery around Eliud Kipchoge, whose prime opposition at the London Marathon will come from the elements and any slippery spots of tarmac at St James’s Park.
One can easily guess at the reactions within the race headquarters when confirmation dropped on Friday afternoon that Kenenisa Bekele had pulled up with a calf injury.
To lose the B-side of what had been billed as the race of the century was just about par for the course in a year when so many of their plans had already been shredded and burnt.
Eluid Kipchoge is the dominant favourite for the London Marathon, but he's also after history
The icon's Nike Vaporfly shoes have proved controversial and have been in danger of a ban
Instead of that showdown, for which all sensible predictions backed Kipchoge, we return to last year’s theme of the great Kenyan taking on a clock for excitement.
He has made no mention of a world-record attempt, but it is natural to wonder how close he will get to his official mark of two hours, one minute and 39 seconds.
He set that in Berlin in 2018 in the older Nike Vaporfly shoe and returns for his 19.6 loops of the park in the same superior Alphafly model with which he famously broke two hours at a time trial last year in conditions that were non-compliant for an official record.
The consensus is that it