Anna Hahner had a brilliant run around the streets of the German capital in the Berlin Marathon on Sunday morning and she looks poised to come back and do it all again at next summer’s European Championships in Berlin.
Hahner said beforehand her goal was simply to run under the qualifying standard of 2:32:00 and the 27-year-old was nearly four minutes inside this mark, finishing fifth in 2:28:32 - the third fastest time of her career and the second fastest time by a German athlete in 2017. She was also the first European finisher home in a race won by Kenya’s Gladys Cherono in 2:20:23.
Hahner needed to take an unplanned pitstop around the 17km checkpoint but she was always comfortably inside the qualifying standard - and not too far off lifetime best pace in wet and humid conditions - through halfway in 1:14:03. Her pace barely slackened in the second half, crossing the finish-line just beyond Brandenburg Gate in 2:28:32 where she was greeted by her twin sister Lisa.
The world record went untouched in the men’s race but Italy’s Catherine Bertone, 45, finished just two seconds behind Hahner in the women’s race in sixth. Not only was her time of 2:28:34 a lifetime best for the distance, it was also a world over-45 record - breaking the previous mark of 2:29:00 held by Ukraine’s Tetyana Pozdnyakova.