In the history of the marathon, no human being has ever run the complete 42 kilometres in under 2 hours.
The current world marathon record holder, Kenya’s Eliud Kipchoge, has been out to change that.
The champion athlete’s first attempt at breaking the 2-hour barrier was in May 2017 in Monza, Italy under his sponsor Nike’s Breaking2 project. He came 26 seconds short.
Between 12th and 20th October (whichever day the conditions happen to be suitable), Kipchoge will make another attempt at running the 26 miles in just under 2 hours.
Unlike in the first instance where the event was largely out of the reach of most Kenyans, this time round, things will be a little different.
Another one of Kipchoge’s sponsors, Safaricom, has announced that it will be offering all its 33 million subscribers free access to the live feed that will stream the INEOS 1:59 Challenge.
The telecommunications company is offering a YouTube bundle that can be activated by dialling *159# on the race day which is tentatively set for 12th October.
The YouTube bundle, which will be active between 8AM and 4PM on the race day, will allow subscribers to stream the race at no cost on their mobile devices.
In addition to the free YouTube bundle to facilitate streaming of the race, “Safaricom will enable all its customers to send free messages voicing their support for the athlete during the race by sending a text to 159. The messages will be displayed live on broadcast TV feeds during the race.”
And that is not all. As you may have noticed (see above-featured image), the M-Pesa logo has also been temporarily changed to reflect the company’s rallying campaign around the star athlete’s momentous challenge.
Kipchoge is the M-Pesa platform’s brand ambassador.
Since 2017, he has been the face of the company as it relaunched and presented itself as the facilitator of all things possible – Twaweza.