Eliud Kipchoge wins London Marathon as Sir Mo Farah finishes third

Kenya's Eliud Kipchoge crosses the finish line to win the elite men's race of the 2018 London Marathon. DANIEL LEAL-OLIVAS/AFP/Getty Images

Eliud Kipchoge won the 2018 men's London Marathon as Sir Mo Farah finished third in a British record time.

Kipchoge, 33, of Kenya, added to his 2015 and 2016 victories as he finished the 26.2-mile course in 2 hours, 4 minutes and 17 seconds. Ethiopia's Shura Kitata Tola crossed the line 33 seconds later for second place.

Four-time Olympic champion Farah, who was competing in his first marathon race since retiring from the track, was next despite twice making a mess of picking up his water bottle at the designated drink stations. He beat Steve Jones' 33-year-old British record.

Television viewers were left confused after Farah crossed the line with the clock clearly showing a time of two hours, six minutes and 21 seconds.

Yet when the official timings were published Farah was clocked at 2 hours, 6 minutes and 32 seconds.

Winner Kipchoge and runner-up Kitata were also wrongly classified with 10 or 11 seconds added to their times as well.

Marathon organisers eventually announced that a "clerical error" was to blame as they published the correct times -- an hour and a half after the top three had actually crossed the line.

There is occasionally a discrepancy between the starting gun and the chip at the finish, but that is normally a second or two, not 10 or 11.

Farah, who won gold in the 5,000 metres and 10,000m in the past two Olympic Games, admitted his second full marathon had taken its toll in a race where there was a world record pace at the halfway point.

He told the BBC: "I am knackered. The guys went for it, they were on for world record pace, so it was do or die. I went with it and hung in as much as I could.

"It's so different to the track. It's incredible. It's different pain, different training but I've really enjoyed it. I gave it all, 110 per cent as I normally do.

"I've got a long way to go in the marathon. You get heavy legs. Mentally you've just got to be strong, take your drink and just pace yourself.

"Definitely a tick to getting the new GB record. It's some payment for the fact that I haven't seen my kids in three months. I want to thank everyone out there for their support."

Discussing his hash of collecting his water bottle, Farah added: "The drinks station was quite confusing. I went to pick it up but it was the staff. They were helpful towards the end but at the beginning someone was trying to take a picture."

Vivian Cheruiyot timed her run to perfection to win the women's elite race.

Cheruiyot, 34, took advantage of failed attempts by last year's winner Mary Keitany and runner-up Tirunesh Dibaba to break Paula Radcliffe's 15-year-old world record.

In stifling heat first Dibaba, of Ethiopia, and then Cheruiyot's fellow Kenyan Keitany dropped off the pace allowing the 2016 Olympic 5000m gold medalist to claim victory.

After nine miles Keitany and main rival Dibaba were 25 seconds ahead of Radcliffe's time. But Dibaba was soon reduced to a walking pace to leave Keitany with only her two male pacemakers for company.

Keitany, looking for a fourth win in London, also started to slow down as it became apparent Radcliffe's record of two hours 15 minutes 25 seconds would not be threatened.

Instead it was Cheruiyot who gave the pacemakers a shock by turning up on their heels, and she went on to win a tough race in two hours 18 minutes and 31 seconds.

Brigid Kosgei of Kenya was second with Tadelech Bekele of Ethiopia third.

Britain's David Weir won the men's wheelchair race for the eighth time after a thrilling sprint finish.

Weir, 38, pipped Switzerland's Marcel Hug into second place, with Daniel Romanchuk of the USA third.

The leaders were well inside the course record time of 1 hour, 28 minutes and 57 seconds during the first half of the race, in what were fine conditions for wheelchair racing.

But as the race wore on it became a tactical affair as the top three braced themselves for a late burst. And just like last year, six-time Paralympic gold medalist Weir edged out two-time winner Hug to claim victory in a time of one hour 31 minutes and 15 seconds.