On this day in 2002: Paula Radcliffe wins Chicago Marathon in world record time

On this day in 2002: Paula Radcliffe wins Chicago Marathon in world record time

Paula Radcliffe won the Chicago Marathon on this day in 2002, setting a then world record time of two hours, 17 minutes and 18 seconds.

The Briton, aged 28 at the time, took 89 seconds off the mark that had been set by Kenya’s Catherine Ndereba in the event the previous year.

Radcliffe had made her debut over 26 miles and 385 yards in April, winning the London Marathon with a world record for a women’s-only race of 2:18:56.

After finishing ahead of Ndereba (2:19:26) and Japan’s Yoko Shibui (2:21:22) in Chicago, Radcliffe said: “I held back in the first half and then in the second half I pushed on a little bit. I was running with some US guys a lot of the time and they were really helping me.

“There was also a lot of support out there for me. I thought it would be really quiet after London, but it wasn’t at all. I was amazed how many British people were out there.”

Radcliffe had also retained her World Cross Country title and landed Commonwealth 5,000m and 10,000m gold medals in 2002.

And she said: “I’ve got the world record, so it’s got to rank at the top.

“Ever since London I have been working towards this and my track races went 100 per cent to plan. Then we went away and put in a lot of hard work and I’m just happy it’s all paid off.”