LONDON (REUTERS) – Kenyan Mary Keitany, world record holder in a women-only marathon, announced her retirement on Wednesday (September 22) at the age of 39 due to a back injury.
Keitany set the record for his third London Marathon victory in 2017, finishing in two hours 17 minutes and a second. Her compatriot Brigid Kosgei and Briton Paula Radcliffe are the only two women to have run a marathon faster, having done so in mixed races.
Keitany said the Covid-19 pandemic denied him the opportunity to receive treatment for a back injury suffered in 2019.
âI’m sad to say, a back injury I suffered in late 2019 made a decision about my retirement for me,â Keitany said in a statement.
âI couldn’t get the treatment I wanted in Europe due to pandemic travel restrictions last year and every time I thought I had gotten over my injury and started training hard, it was become a problem again.
“So now is the time to say goodbye – if only as an elite runner – to the sport I love so much.”
Keitany has won the New York Marathon four times, including three consecutive victories between 2014 and 2016 and the world half marathon title in 2009. She finished fourth at the 2012 Olympics in London.