What do you do after you’ve won three Boston Marathon titles? If you’re Rita Jeptoo, you go for the world record.
Arriving back in her native Kenya last Thursday, less than two weeks after winning the Boston Marathon with a time of 2:18:57—a personal best and a new course record—the 33-year-old distance star dished on her ambitious goal.
"I will let you know when I am ready for it as long as the almighty God keeps me in good health,” she told reporters, according to AllAfrica.com. “However, one thing is for sure, that day will come to pass one day if not soon."
The time for Jeptoo to beat is 2:15:25, run by Paula Radcliffe of England at the 2003 London Marathon. While world marathon records don’t fall easily—just ask the supremely talented field of men who tried and failed to set a new global standard earlier this month in London—Jeptoo plans to take a breather and then begin training in earnest.
If she does so in Kenya, she might eventually take advantage of renovations being done to Kipchoge Keino Stadium in Kapsabet. Nandi County officials recently broke ground on the project, and they hope that the construction work will bring the facility up to international standards and “position the county to be a sports tourism region.”
“We can only improve the athletes’ performance by having the right facilities in place, and that is why we are keen to renovate the Kapsabet Stadium,” said Nandi governor Dr. Cleophas Lagat.
In addition to looking forward to her world-record bid, Jeptoo reflected on her recent Boston performance, saying she was surprised she broke the course record.
"It was a really hard course, but I thank God I emerged victorious,” she said. “In fact when I finished, I was still very strong.”
“Our races are to our sport what Wimbledon and the Australian, U.S., and French Opens are to tennis, and what the Masters, U.S., and British Opens and PGA Championship are to golf. Each race has the history, the tradition, the honor roll of legendary champions, and a special place in the eyes of all to make them stand apart from the other events.” Mary Wittenberg