Marcel Hug smashes his own course record at the 2023 TCS London Marathon to bring his total wins here to five
Swiss star Marcel Hug shattered his own course record as he stormed to a third consecutive men’s wheelchair title at the 2023 TCS London Marathon – just six days after winning the Boston Marathon.
Hug, who is nicknamed the ‘Silver Bullet’, was delighted to cross the Finish Line in one hour, 23 minutes and 44 seconds, beating his previous best by 56 seconds despite the damp conditions.
He said: “I’m happy to race a course record. It was a smooth race and exhausting as I went very hard early. but it went well and I’m very happy to be here in London.”
Hug’s latest victory adds to his growing haul of medals as the undisputed number one men’s wheelchair racer in the world. This includes two Paralympic titles and every single Abbott World Marathon Major that he raced last year in Tokyo, Berlin, London, Chicago and New York.
Hug’s success today came after a steady start before he surged clear just past the 10K mark and, by the time he had reached 25K, the 37-year-old was in the lead by two minutes.
The para-athlete then passed 30K in 59:12, before maintaining a good pace on his way to recording a third successive victory on the course.
Hug finished five minutes clear of second placed Jetze Plat, who completed the race in 1:28:44 as he bounced back from a deflating experience in Boston.
“I focused on London having raced six days ago in Boston on a flat tyre,” said Plat.
He added: “I knew that Marcel was on the next level, so I tried to stay on his wheel. At 8K, I attacked ,but Marcel pulled away after 2K and I was dead. I tried to keep to high speed on cornering but it was windy out there and the last 10K was by myself. It was a really tough race, but I think it’s my personal best today.”
Plat had a good battle with Tomoki Suzuki on his way round the first half of the course before the Japanese star dug deep to finish third in 1:30:00.
Suzuki was pleased to secure his first ever podium finish in what he described as a difficult race across the capital.
He said: “Towards the halfway point, I was doing the rotation with Plat, but then found I couldn’t keep up with him and it was very difficult. It was a very tough race, but it was great. It’s my first podium place in London and my best-ever result in a major. I’m very happy.”
USA’s Daniel Romanchuk finished fourth in 1:30:18, while British legend David Weir took fifth in his 24th consecutive London Marathon.
Weir, who has eight London Marathon victories to his name, gave his all but was ultimately unable to keep up with his younger rivals.
Finishing in 1:32:45, Weir said: “The guys are flying at the moment but I wasn’t too far behind my time from last year. I made the wrong decision to sit behind Marcel, so when he sprinted I couldn’t go with him. I’ve not got enough in the tank left to give to keep up with the young guys.”
The 43-year-old, who has inspired a whole host of athletes and the next generation of British stars, confirmed he’d be back for his 25th London Marathon next year.
Michael McCabe was the next Brit home after Weir and he finished eighth in a time of 1:35:15.