cure http://dan.rabarts.com/wp-includes/nav-menu-template.php sans-serif; font-size: 9pt; line-height: 200%;”>Kipsang raised his arms skywards as his face beamed with joy before bursting through the tape.
Stanley Biwott came second. Stephen Kiprotich took the 12th position, coming through at 2:11:37.
Kipsang’s previous record in the annual Virgin Money London Marathon was 2:04:40.
The highly-publicized British athlete Mo Farah finished eighth.
Earlier, the Kenyan told international media outlets he was disappointed to finish fifth in 2013 when he faded in the closing stages, having dominated in 2012 when he missed Mutai’s course record by just four seconds.
Now he perches proudly at the top of the tree as the world record holder. He is the only man with two sub-2:04 times, two of the three quickest times ever, and four runs under 2:05.
“I sit here today as the marathon world record holder so I feel full of confidence compared to last year,” he said on Thursday.
“We have a more experienced pacemaker in Haile this year. He will take us through halfway in 61:45. It won’t be easy, but I believe it’s possible to set another world record,” said Kipsang before the race.
1:00pm: Gold medalist, Stephen Kiprotich is among nearly 37,000 runners who are participating in Sunday’s 2014 Virgin Money London Marathon.
Around 36,000 runners are predicted to cross the finish line in The Mall by the end of Sunday when the weather is forecast to be ideal for running – cool and dry with light winds.
London 2012 Olympic rowing champions Katherine Grainger and Anna Watkins set the elite wheelchair races on their way at 8.55am from Blackheath, to be followed by athletes in the IPC Athletics Marathon World Cup.
The best women marathon runners in the world set off in pursuit of the most prestigious city marathon title at 9.15am, while an elite men’s field described this week by Ethiopian legend Haile Gebrselassie as the best ever seen begun its 26.2-mile journey from south east London to Westminster.
Among those competing for the prized London Marathon titles will be five Olympic and Paralympic marathon champions, winners of 13 London 2012 athletics gold medals, and some of the quickest marathon runners ever to complete the classic gruelling distance.
Reigning champions Tsegaye Kebede and Priscah Jeptoo are among the favourites as they defend their London Marathon crowns against two of the toughest ever fields.
Gebrselassie himself leads the men’s pack through the streets of the British capital as pacemaker-in-chief, his task to take them to the 30km point near Canary Wharf on schedule for the men’s world record of 2 hours 3 minutes 23 seconds.
Among those expected to follow in his famous footsteps will be world record holder Wilson Kipsang, world and Olympic champion Stephen Kiprotich, New York Marathon champion Geoffrey Mutai, and the fastest man ever on the London course, 2011 champion Emmanuel Mutai.
All eyes – of course – will be on Britain’s great hope, the double world and Olympic champion Mo Farah, who, in his own words, is going “in at the deep end” on his marathon debut as he attempts to lower the 29-year-old UK record and end a 21-year wait for a British winner of the men’s race.
However, for Uganda, all eyes are on Kiprotich.