It has been two weeks since Eliud Kipchoge ran a marathon in under two hours.
A debate about his shoes has however erupted with many saying that the shoes that Eliud wore during the INEOS159 challenge gave him an unfair advantage.
The marathon was carefully planned. Kipchoge had 41 pacemakers. All conditions were ideal, the weather was perfect and the course was flat. The pacemakers were guided by a laser to mark which position was ideal to run.
There was a support team on bikes that fed him nutrition and drinks. He also wore a special type of shoe, the shoe is a special version of the Nike Vaporfly Next%. which critics say has a spring like mechanism that accelerates performance.
The shoe has carbon fibre plates in the midsole.
Ryan Hall, now-retired American runner had this to say.
“With all due respect to [Kipchoge] as he is clearly the greatest marathoner of all-time regardless of the shoe he is in [but] when a shoe company puts multiple carbon fibre plates in a shoe with a cushion between the plates, it is no longer a shoe,” Hall wrote on Instagram.
“It’s a spring, and a clear mechanical advantage to anyone not in those shoes.
“I’m just hoping [the International Amateur Athletic Federation, or IAAF] makes sure the upcoming Olympics and [World Marathon Majors] are fair playing fields for athletes of all brands.”
“The only reason I posted was simply to state my opinion that shoes need to be regulated with strict rules so that it’s an even playing field for elites across all brands,” he said.
“I’m all about [advancements] in technology that help us run faster. But I don’t think athletes should be losing races because they are in a shoe that doesn’t have a spring-like mechanism in them.
“This isn’t about unreleased prototypes not being available, it’s about mechanical advantage. Other sports have limits they place on the gear — cycling, triathlon, golf. So needs track and field.”
It is said that a group of athletes has already complained to the IAAF about the shoe, and that the federation had reportedly set up a “working gup to consider the issues”