Radcliffe: Olympic race 'wide open'


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The Independent Online

Paula Radcliffe believes next year's Olympic marathon is wide open after seeing another major threat to her chances emerge in Berlin on Sunday.

Kenya's Florence Kiplagat, 24, had dropped out of her only previous marathon before her impressive victory on the streets of the German capital. Germany's Irina Mikitenko also marked her return to form by finishing second, with Radcliffe third.

"The marathon is wide open, you need to get yourself there and be healthy," said Radcliffe, who will undergo a minor foot operation later this week.

"I can only give it my best shot. However much you want to, you can't magic yourself back 10 years, you just have to keep working hard.

"An Olympic marathon is not the same race [as a big city marathon]. I don't like running with men around me, I prefer a women's only race. It's a totally different game mentally."