Valencia Marathon: Laura Hottenrott storms into a sensation
Quake in the German marathon scene: At the end of the competition season, the leaderboard was overturned again. The big surprise: Laura Hottenrott.
Words: Agata Strausa
Photos: Kai Heuser
Anyone who starts in Valencia wants to run fast
Valencia fully lived up to its reputation of being a hot spot: in the marathon through the Spanish metropolis, in addition to numerous international top times, two German professionals also stormed to sensational PBs - and significantly undercut the qualification standard for the Olympic Games in Paris 2024.
European champion Richard Ringer improved his already strong best time from 2:08:08 to 2:07:05 - and thus underpinned his claim to a starting place in Paris. Before Valencia, Ringer had retreated to the training camp in Kenya and put his full focus on a strong race in Valencia. He more than succeeded in returning from the African heights.
So far, only one other German apart from wrestler has beaten the standard of 2:08:10 - the German record holder Amanal Petros. Another Olympic contender was also at the start in Spain: Haftom Welday. Although he ran a best time, he missed the standard by just a few seconds with 2:08:24. It's hard to imagine how much this probably bothered him - perhaps he took a corner a little tighter, set the finish line earlier - and he would have stayed under the limit.
Melat Kejeta also didn't want to let anything burn. The German already has a PB of 2:23:57 and bravely went for a finish time towards 2:19:19, the German record. That day, courage turned into arrogance - because at kilometer 30 she seemed to have prematurely reached the end of her strength. Rabea Schöneborn from Berlin had also hoped for more from the race. For the Olympic standard, the Berliner would have had to improve her current PB (2:27:03) by 13 seconds, but with 2:31:05 she fell well short of her expectations and fought her way to the finish with a distorted look in her eyes.
Another German starter caused a sensation: Laura Hottenrott pulverized her PB and finished in 2:24:32 - only three German runners had ever been faster. She started in the main field instead of with the elite - and rolled up the field from behind. Unlike the elite field, she had to organize her own individual meals and had put the energy gels in the pockets of her pants. Did Hottenrott perfect self-catering at the Mountain Running World Championships this summer, where she achieved a top placing? In any case, the trail trip seems to have done her a lot of good. The fact that she achieved such a fast time after her not-so-lucky 2:29 finish at the Berlin Marathon in September also shows how much will and potential she has.
The tension for the coveted places remains high
With her new PB, Laura Hottenrott is the second fastest German runner to qualify for the Olympics behind Domenika Mayer. Three tickets are available for the DLV team. It is unlikely that someone else will step in front of them. This means that the places among the Olympic candidates have been reshuffled, and next year it will be a tough fight for third place on the team.
You can read about what is necessary for Olympic qualification and what exactly the places in the German marathon squad for the 2024 Olympics are like in the next issue here at más. It remains exciting!
These runners have run the Olympic standard and are now qualified for Paris 2024
|2:23:47 - Berlin (GER) - 09/24/2023
|2:24:32 - Valencia (ESP) - 12/03/2023
|2:25:48 - Hamburg (GER) - March 23, 2023
|2:04:58 - Berlin (GER) - 09/24/2023
|2:07:05 - Valencia (ESP) - 12/03/2023