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Articles tagged #Joshua Cheptegei
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American Record Alert: Emily Sisson Targeting Molly Huddle’s 67:25 AR at Sunday’s Valencia Half Marathon

At times, the 2020 track & field season has felt like one giant record chase. With the vast majority of major championships cancelled, athletes have shifted their targets from medals to times. And with the ability to focus on one race with the sole goal of running as fast as possible, records have tumbled around the globe. Uganda’s Joshua Cheptegei took down Kenenisa Bekele‘s 16-year-old 5,000-meter world record in August. In the span of one hour in October, Letesenbet Gidey broke Tirunesh Dibaba‘s 5,000-meter world record and Cheptegei fully erased Bekele from the outdoor record books by breaking his 10,000m mark. Domestically, Shelby Houlihan chopped over 10 seconds off her American 5,000-meter record back in July, taking it down to 14:23.92.

The latest installment of the Great Record Chase of 2020 comes on Sunday in Valencia, where distance studs Rhonex Kipruto, Jacob Kiplimo, and Gidey will have the half marathon world records in their sights. Just a few minutes back, Emily Sisson — one of the few Americans making the trip to Spain (Jordan Hasay is also entered in the marathon) — will be shooting for a mark of her own: the 67:25 American half marathon record, currently held by her friend and occasional training partner Molly Huddle.

says Ray Treacy, who coaches both Sisson and Huddle. “That’s the goal and see how she feels the last 5k…We’re just hoping for the best and she gets her reward for all the hard work she’s done over the last four or five months, because this is her only race.”

Sisson hasn’t raced since dropping out of the US Olympic Marathon Trials in February, though she did run the virtual New York City Marathon in 2:38:00 in October (Treacy says the aim was merely to get in a good long run effort, adding that it felt “easy” for Sisson and that she recovered “immediately”). Considering her goal is to make the Olympic team at 10,000 meters next year, Treacy did not want Sisson to run another marathon this fall, making the half marathon a natural distance for a target race. And with USATF opting not to send a team to the World Half Marathon Championships, Valencia was the best option.

Treacy says Sisson’s fitness is “really, really good” at the moment, with the 29-year-old clocking 24:37 recently for a five-mile time trial and averaging 5:05 pace for a 4 x 2-mile workout — well under American record pace (AR paceis 5:09). Currently, Sisson sits #2 on the all-time US list thanks to her 67:30 in Houston last year.

There are a couple of potential stumbling blocks, however. First, Sisson may not have any company during the race. The top women will be aiming to run the world record (64:31) or close to it, which is beyond Sisson’s abilities. Though there are two other women — Kenyans Brenda Jepleting (67:07) and Sheila Chepkirui (67:37) — with personal bests close to Sisson, it’s unclear whether they’ll try to run with her or opt for the more aggressive pace up front.

Treacy believes Sisson should be able to handle that situation just fine, though. She was alone for most of the second half of her marathon debut in London in 2019 and came out with a stellar 2:23:08 personal best.

“She’s pretty good at doing that anyway, so I’m not worried about it,” Treacy says.

The larger concern is the weather. The high of 58 degrees in Valencia on Sunday is fine, but the projected winds of 15 to 25 miles per hour could prove problematic.

While Sisson still has several years of her prime remaining, record opportunities like this are precious. Under Treacy, Huddle only raced one half marathon per year from 2015 to 2020, and three of those came on a relatively tough course in New York. Even when Huddle did finally set the record in Houston in 2018, she wasn’t 100% as she had gotten sick a few days earlier.

“[Huddle] never had the opportunity to run really, really fast,” Treacy says. “Certainly when Molly was in the shape she was in Rio, (where she ran an American 10,000m record of 30:13 at the 2016 Olympics), I think she could have run 66:30, 66:40.”

Sisson will get her shot on Sunday. Can she give the Great Record Chase of 2020 a fitting send-off?

(12/05/2020) Views: 15 ⚡AMP
by Let’s Run
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Emily Sisson will be targeting Molly Huddle’s 67:25 AR at Sunday’s Valencia Half Marathon

At times, the 2020 track & field season has felt like one giant record chase. With the vast majority of major championships cancelled, athletes have shifted their targets from medals to times. And with the ability to focus on one race with the sole goal of running as fast as possible, records have tumbled around the globe. Uganda’s Joshua Cheptegei took down Kenenisa Bekele‘s 16-year-old 5,000-meter world record in August. In the span of one hour in October, Letesenbet Gidey broke Tirunesh Dibaba‘s 5,000-meter world record and Cheptegei fully erased Bekele from the outdoor record books by breaking his 10,000m mark. Domestically, Shelby Houlihan chopped over 10 seconds off her American 5,000-meter record back in July, taking it down to 14:23.92.

The latest installment of the Great Record Chase of 2020 comes on Sunday in Valencia, where distance studs Rhonex Kipruto, Jacob Kiplimo, and Gidey will have the half marathon world records in their sights. Just a few minutes back, Emily Sisson — one of the few Americans making the trip to Spain (Jordan Hasay is also entered in the marathon) — will be shooting for a mark of her own: the 67:25 American half marathon record, currently held by her friend and occasional training partner Molly Huddle.

says Ray Treacy, who coaches both Sisson and Huddle. “That’s the goal and see how she feels the last 5k…We’re just hoping for the best and she gets her reward for all the hard work she’s done over the last four or five months, because this is her only race.”

Sisson hasn’t raced since dropping out of the US Olympic Marathon Trials in February, though she did run the virtual New York City Marathon in 2:38:00 in October (Treacy says the aim was merely to get in a good long run effort, adding that it felt “easy” for Sisson and that she recovered “immediately”). Considering her goal is to make the Olympic team at 10,000 meters next year, Treacy did not want Sisson to run another marathon this fall, making the half marathon a natural distance for a target race. And with USATF opting not to send a team to the World Half Marathon Championships, Valencia was the best option.

Treacy says Sisson’s fitness is “really, really good” at the moment, with the 29-year-old clocking 24:37 recently for a five-mile time trial and averaging 5:05 pace for a 4 x 2-mile workout — well under American record pace (AR paceis 5:09). Currently, Sisson sits #2 on the all-time US list thanks to her 67:30 in Houston last year.

There are a couple of potential stumbling blocks, however. First, Sisson may not have any company during the race. The top women will be aiming to run the world record (64:31) or close to it, which is beyond Sisson’s abilities. Though there are two other women — Kenyans Brenda Jepleting (67:07) and Sheila Chepkirui (67:37) — with personal bests close to Sisson, it’s unclear whether they’ll try to run with her or opt for the more aggressive pace up front.

Treacy believes Sisson should be able to handle that situation just fine, though. She was alone for most of the second half of her marathon debut in London in 2019 and came out with a stellar 2:23:08 personal best.

“She’s pretty good at doing that anyway, so I’m not worried about it,” Treacy says.

The larger concern is the weather. The high of 58 degrees in Valencia on Sunday is fine, but the projected winds of 15 to 25 miles per hour could prove problematic.

While Sisson still has several years of her prime remaining, record opportunities like this are precious. Under Treacy, Huddle only raced one half marathon per year from 2015 to 2020, and three of those came on a relatively tough course in New York. Even when Huddle did finally set the record in Houston in 2018, she wasn’t 100% as she had gotten sick a few days earlier.

“[Huddle] never had the opportunity to run really, really fast,” Treacy says. “Certainly when Molly was in the shape she was in Rio, (where she ran an American 10,000m record of 30:13 at the 2016 Olympics), I think she could have run 66:30, 66:40.”

(12/01/2020) Views: 44 ⚡AMP
by Jonathan Gault
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Valencia Half Marathon

Valencia Half Marathon

The Trinidad Alfonso Valencia Half Marathon has become one of the top running events in the world in its 25th year. For the second year running, Valencia is the fastest half marathon in the world. The race, organized by SD Correcaminos Athletics Club, celebrated its silver anniversary in style with record participation, record crowd numbers, Silver label IAAF accreditation and...

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Ababel Yeshaneh, Brigid Kosgei, Kibiwott Kandie and Jacob Kiplimo will renew rivalry at Ras Al Khaimah Half Marathon

The fastest half-marathon in the world has attracted the best half-marathon runners on the planet again.

The 15th edition of the Ras Al Khaimah Half Marathon on February 19 will see reigning champions Kibiwott Kandie and Ababel Yeshaneh defending their titles while world half-marathon champion Jacob Kiplimo and world marathon record-holder Brigid Kosgei will try to wrestle their titles off them.

The event, which is often known simply as ‘the RAK Half’ and which takes place on a super-fast course in the northernmost emirate of the United Arab Emirates in three months’ time, will see mouth-watering clashes in separate men’s and women’s races. More entries are expected to be announced in coming weeks but so far they include:

» Kibiwott Kandie – fastest man in the world over 13.1 miles in 2020 with 58:38 from Prague in September and winner in Ras Al Khamah in February with 58:58. The Kenyan (below) was also runner-up in the World Half Marathon Championships in 58:54, making him the first man to run sub-59min three times in one year.

» Jacob Kiplimo – the Ugandan took the world-marathon title ahead of Kandie in Gdynia last month following a track season that saw him run 7:26.64 for 3000m and 12:48.63 for 5000m. Only 20, he also took world cross-country champs silver behind Joshua Cheptegei in Aarhus last year.

» Ababel Yeshaneh – set a women’s world half-marathon record of 64:31 to win the Ras Al Khaimah race in February. At the World Half in Gdynia she was fifth but the Ethiopian fell in the closing stages. Over the marathon she was runner-up to Kosgei in Chicago last year with 2:20:51.

» Brigid Kosgei – world record-holder for the marathon with 2:14:04 from Chicago in 2019 and winner of the last two London Marathons, whereas over 13.1 miles the Kenyan (below) was 18 seconds behind Yeshaneh in Ras Al Khaimah this year in the second-fastest time in history.

The race is often dominated by east African distance runners but Sara Hall of the United States is one of the early entries, too, and will be sure to attract interest from US fans after her battling runner-up performance at the London Marathon in October.

“This is the fastest half-marathon course in the world and we want it to maintain its fame,” says Ras Al Khaimah Half race director Andrea Trabuio.

With the coronavirus pandemic causing problems around the world, Trabuio says the elite races and non-elite events will be run separately on February 19 in order to maintain social distancing. With the non-elite event there will be seven waves with about 400 runners in each wave with temperature checks at the start and masks being worn for the first few hundred meters.

(11/25/2020) Views: 48 ⚡AMP
by Jason Henderson
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Rak Half Marathon

Rak Half Marathon

The Ras Al Khaimah Half Marathon is the 'world's fastest half marathon' because if you take the top 10 fastest times recorded in RAK for men (and the same for women) and find the average (for each) and then do the same with the top ten fastest recorded times across all races (you can reference the IAAF for this), the...

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World 1,500m champion Timothy Cheruiyot has missed out on the World Athletics Male Athlete of the Year Award

Cheruiyot was Kenya's sole flagbearer for the coveted award. World Athletics has released the final five nominees for the award with the winner expected to be announced virtually on December 5.

Uganda's world record holder in the 5,000m and 10,000m Joshua Cheptegei is the favorite for the gong. He broke world records at 5,000m (12:35.36), 10,000m (26:11.00) and 5km on the roads (12:51) and was fourth at the World Athletics Half Marathon Championships on his debut over the distance.

Two-time 400m hurdles world champion Karsten Warholm of Norway makes the cut for the award after a stellar season on the track.

He ran a world-leading 46.87 in the 400m hurdles, the second-fastest performance in history, and was undefeated in nine 400m/400m hurdles races and set a world best of 33.78 in 300m hurdles

Former world javelin champion Johannes Vetter, of Germany, is in the mix after winning eight of his nine javelin competitions and throwing world-leading 97.76m, the second farthest throw in history

World Pole vault record holder Mondo Duplantis of Sweden makes the shortlist. He broke the world record in the pole vault twice (6.17m and 6.18m) and produced the highest outdoor vault of all time (6.15m) and was undefeated in 16 competitions.

USA'S Ryan Crouser will be e hoping to break the trend and win the award. He was undefeated in 10 shot put competitions and his 22.91m world-leading performance moved him to equal third on the world all-time list

A three-way voting process determined the finalists. The World Athletics Council and the World Athletics Family cast their votes by email, while fans voted online via our social media platforms.

The Council’s vote counted for 50 per cent of the result, while the Athletics Family’s votes and the public votes each counted for 25 per cent of the final result.

(11/24/2020) Views: 30 ⚡AMP
by World Athletics
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World Athletics has announced contenders for COVID Inspiration Award

World Athletics has announced the Herculis Wanda Diamond League meeting in Monaco, the Ultimate Garden Clash and the World Athletics Half Marathon Championships in Gdynia as the nominations for the special COVID Inspiration Award.

The international governing body revealed the award aims to recognise event organisations in a year of unprecedented challenges, roadblocks and disruptions brought on by the global COVID-19 pandemic.

The three events were nominated to show the organisers efforts to meet those challenges and provide competitive opportunities for athletes and entertaining events for fans around the world.

"Necessity has been the mother of invention for all of us in this pandemic year and we have seen some really creative initiatives and programmes from our athletes and our event organisers, who have had to reinvent their operations and surmount huge obstacles in order to provide competition for our athletes and fans, which is the lifeblood of our sport," Sebastian Coe, World Athletics President, said.

"We wanted to recognise their enormous resilience and creativity this year by presenting this special award to one of those events that have been exceptionally innovative this year."

The World Athletics Council selected the three nominations.

The Herculis Wanda Diamond League meeting in Monaco was put forward with World Athletics claiming the event overcame unprecedented public health and safety concerns, global travel restrictions and painful budget cuts to stage their annual competition.

The event marked the start of the heavily interrupted Diamond League season on 14 August and saw Uganda's Joshua Cheptegei break the men’s 5,000 metres world record in front of a crowd of 5,000 spectators.

The event featured 132 athletes, including 13 reigning world champions.

A total of 36 countries participated in the event despite the challenges posed by the pandemic, with 14 world-leading performances achieved at the meeting.

Of those 14 performances, 11 remained the year’s best performances at the end of the season.

(11/09/2020) Views: 54 ⚡AMP
by Michael Pavitt
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Joshua Cheptegei and Karsten Warholm headline nominees for Male World Athlete of the Year

World Athletics released its list of 10 nominees for Male World Athlete of the Year on Monday, and six of the finalists are runners. The list consists of 10 incredible athletes, each of whom have had amazing 2020 seasons despite having limited opportunities to compete, and it includes the likes of Joshua Cheptegei and Karsten Warholm.

Here are the six runners who have been nominated, along with their accomplishments in 2020 and why they deserve to win Male World Athlete of the Year. 

Noah Lyles only raced a handful of times this year, all in July and August, but he finished his season undefeated. He had one second-place finish in a 100m race in Florida, but that was in a preliminary heat. Later that day, he ran 9.93 seconds in the finals to take the win. He also has the world-leading 200m time of 19.76, which he ran at the Monaco Diamond League. 

Donavan Brazier, Like Lyles, Brazier went undefeated this year. He kicked the season off by setting an American 800m indoor record with a 1:44.22, and he also ran the outdoor 800m world-leading time in Monaco, where he won the race in 1:43.15. Racing in 600m, 800m and 1,500m events throughout the season, Brazier showed off his speed and endurance, often cruising to wins. On top of all that, after his final race of the year, news came out that he had been dealing with plantar fasciitis during these races, although he certainly didn’t let it slow him down too much.

Karsten Warholm, Once again, we have an undefeated athlete nominated. Warholm not only won all six of his 400mH races this year, but he also ran the six fastest times in the event in 2020. He’s the only athlete who ran sub-48 seconds this year (a feat which he accomplished five times), and he also ran the second-fastest 400mH time in history with a 46.87 in Stockholm in August. This was just 0.09 seconds off the world record of 46.78, which has stood since 1992. Finally, he also set the 300mH world record at a meet in Oslo, where he ran 33.78 seconds.

Timothy Cheruiyot, didn’t have an undefeated season, but he did remain perfect in his preferred event of 1,500m. He won each of his three 1,500m races in 2020, and he also set the world-leading time of 3:28.45, which he ran in Monaco. He also stepped out of his comfort zone with a 5,000m run in March. He recorded a time of 13:47.2, and while this result doesn’t even put him in the top 700 all-time among Kenyan runners, it’s still cool to see him broadening his horizons. We don’t expect to see him making the jump to longer races anytime soon, but if a 5,000m every now and then helps him with his endurance for the 1,500m, then all power to him. 

Joshua Cheptegei, has had the year of his life. He raced four times in 2020 and broke three world records. He opened the year with a 5K road world record in Monaco, where he ran 12:51, but before he could continue his season, COVID-19 hit and put everything on hold. His time away from racing didn’t seem to faze him, though, because in his return to competition, he set the 5,000m world record (once again in Monaco) with a time of 12:35.36. Two months later, he followed that up with a 10,000m record of 26:11.00. He ran his season finale at the World Half-Marathon Championships in Poland, and while he didn’t win (he finished in fourth in 59:21), it was his debut at the distance, and he still has plenty of time to chase that world record in the coming years. 

Jacob Kiplimo, only raced three times in 2020, but he won each event, and he showed impressive range as he performed well across three different distances. He opened his season with a 5,000m, which he ran in 12:48.63 (the second-fastest time in Ugandan history, behind only Cheptegei). A little over a week later, he ran a 3,000m in 7:26.64 to set the Ugandan national record and world-leading time in the event. Finally, he won his first world title when he ran to victory in 58:49 at the World Half-Marathon Championships, setting another Ugandan record along the way. 

(11/06/2020) Views: 52 ⚡AMP
by Ben Snider-McGrath
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Kenya’s Timothy Cheruiyot makes the cut for Athlete of the Year

World 1,500 meters champion Timothy Cheruiyot has made the 10-man shortlist for the World Athletics Male Athlete of the Year.

The Kenya Prisons officer ran world-leading 3:28.45 over 1,500m and was undefeated in three races in his speciality.

Cheruiyot faces a herculean task to bag the award with Uganda's Joshua Cheptegei the front runner for the award after a stellar season.

Cheptegei broke world records at 5,000m (12:35.36), 10,000m (26:11.00) and 5km on the roads (12:51)  and was fourth at the World Athletics Half Marathon Championships on his debut over the distance.

His Ugandan counterpart Jacob Kiplimo won World Half Marathon title in a championship record of 58:49 and ran a world-leading 7:26.64 over 3,000m—the fastest time in the world since 2007.

Donovan Brazier of the United States of America has also made the cut after running a world-leading 800m times  of 1:44.22, North American indoor record and outdoors (1:43.15). He also won all seven of his races over all distances.

World 400m hurdles champion Karsten Warholm of Norway is also in contention for the coveted award. He has a world-lead of 46.87 in the 400m hurdles, the second fastest performance in history and was undefeated in nine 400m/400m hurdles races. He also set world best of 33.78 in 300m hurdles.

Others in the mix include USA sprint sensation Noah Lyles, who was undefeated in five finals and ran a world leading time of 19.76 over 200m

World javelin bronze medalist Johannes Vetter, of Germany, USA's shot put specialist Ryan Crouser and Swedish duo of Daniel Stahl and Mondo Duplantis also made the cut. A three-way voting process will determine the finalists.

The World Athletics Council and the World Athletics Family will cast their votes by email while fans can vote online via the WA social media platforms. Individual graphics for each nominee will be posted on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram this week; a 'like' on Facebook and Instagram or a retweet on Twitter will count as one vote.

The World Athletics Council’s vote will count for 50 per cent of the result while the World Athletics Family’s votes and the public votes will each account for 25 per cent each of the final result. Voting for the World Athletes of the Year closes at midnight on November 15.

(11/03/2020) Views: 45 ⚡AMP
by William Njuguna
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Britain’s Laura Muir and Uganda’s Joshua Cheptegei among World Athletics awards nominees

Britain’s Laura Muir is among the nominees for the female world athlete of the year honor, while Uganda’s Joshua Cheptegei is on a shortlist for the male prize at the World Athletics Awards.

This year the global governing body’s awards event will be held virtually on Saturday December 5.

Muir clocked 1500m times of 3:57.40, 3:57.86 and 3:58.24 to lead the world rankings and set a British 1000m record of 2:30.82 in 2020, while Cheptegei broke three world records throughout the year – running 12:51 for a road 5km, 12:35.36 for 5000m on the track and 26:11.00 for 10,000m on the track.

Ethiopia’s Letesenbet Gidey, who set a world record of 14:06.62 over 5000m, and Netherlands’ Sifan Hassan, who recorded a world record distance of 18,930m in the one-hour run and broke the European 10,000m record with 29:36.67, are also among the female nominees.

The men’s shortlist also features Sweden’s world pole vault record-breaker Mondo Duplantis and Norway’s Karsten Warholm, who ran a world-leading 46.87 in the 400m hurdles and was unbeaten in that event.

Female world athlete of the year nominees: Femke Bol, Netherlands; Letesenbet Gidey, Ethiopia; Sifan Hassan, Netherlands; Peres Jepchirchir, Kenya; Faith Kipyegon, Kenya; Laura Muir, Great Britain and Northern Ireland; Hellen Obiri, Kenya; Yulimar Rojas, Venezuela; Elaine Thompson-Herah, Jamaica; Ababel Yeshaneh, Ethiopia

Male world athlete of the year nominees: Donavan Brazier, USA; Joshua Cheptegei, Uganda; Timothy Cheruiyot, Kenya; Ryan Crouser, USA; Mondo Duplantis, Sweden; Jacob Kiplimo, Uganda; Noah Lyles, USA; Daniel Stahl, Sweden; Johannes Vetter, Germany; Karsten Warholm, Norway

A three-way voting process will determine the finalists. The World Athletics Council and the World Athletics Family will cast their votes by email, while fans can vote online via the World Athletics’ social media platforms.

As well as male and female athlete of the year honors, the World Athletics Awards will include the president’s award, coaching achievement award and athletics photograph of the year, as well as a Covid inspiration award, athletes community award and member federations award.

Last year Eliud Kipchoge and Dalilah Muhammad were named world athletes of the year, while the 2018 winners were Kipchoge and Caterine Ibarguen.

(11/03/2020) Views: 46 ⚡AMP
by Athletics Weekly
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Joshua Cheptegei's world 5000m record of 12:35.36 set at the Wanda Diamond League in Monaco on August 14 has been ratified

The Ugandan, now 24, took two seconds off Kenenisa Bekele’s mark of 12:37.35, set 16 years earlier in Hengelo. Amazingly, it was Cheptegei’s first race since setting a world 5km record on the roads on 16 February, also in Monaco.

Paced through the early stages by Roy Hoornweg (2:31.87 at 1000m) and Matthew Ramsden (5:03.77 at 2000m), Cheptegei, the reigning world cross country and 10,000m champion, took up the running at half way and continued the metronomic pace, churning out 61-second laps. He passed through 3000m in 7:35.14 and then upped the pace slightly with a 2:30 fourth kilometre.

Having left the rest of the field way behind, he maintained his tempo and eked out another 2:30 split for the final kilometre, bringing him to the finish line in 12:35.36 after a 59.64 final lap.

With his season cut short by the Covid-19 pandemic, Cheptegei made no secret of his ambitions to take down's Bekele's record which had stood since the rising star was seven years old, and targeted precisely that in Monaco.

After the race Cheptegei revealed: “It took a lot of mind setting to keep being motivated this year because so many people are staying at home but you have to stay motivated. I pushed myself, I had the right staff with me, the right coach. I'm also usually based in Europe, but being based in Uganda with my family was actually great.

“If you believe in something, anything is possible," he continued. "Breaking a record was something really difficult, but when you know the right way, it’s not difficult anymore. So, the next challenge is to go chase one or two more world records. I would be the happiest person in the world.”

On 7 October in Valencia, in his third race of the year, Cheptegei shattered the world record in the 10,000m, clocking 26:11.00, a performance which is now awaiting ratification.

(10/28/2020) Views: 88 ⚡AMP
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Uganda´s Joshua Cheptegei to rest for a month before chasing Olympic dream

Joshua Cheptegei will rest for a month before he starts preparations for the next season."It has been hectic. I want to rest a bit before I prepare for what could be an even more challenging 2021," stated Cheptegei.

The cross-country season begins next month climaxing in March before the track season whose highlight will be the Tokyo Olympics in August.

Rest makes a lot of sense after a season where the Ugandan star has broken three world records.But there are signs of an equally tough upcoming season where Cheptegei will be eyeing a historic 5000 and 10000 meter Olympic double.

"Of course I will be going for double gold in Tokyo," stated Cheptegei from Kapchorwa today.

For now, Stephen Kiprotich is the only Ugandan to have won gold at both the Olympics and World Championships.

Should Cheptegei realize this dream he will become the first Ugandan to soar to such heights.

2016 Olympic 5000 and 10000m gold medals.

Olympic gold is the only medal so far missing in Cheptegei's now rich collection.Victory in Tokyo will not only make Cheptegei one of Africa's greatest athletes,  but also Uganda's most successful ever.

(10/26/2020) Views: 69 ⚡AMP
by James Bakama
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Athlete Refugee team member Nait-Hammou on his half marathon championships debut

Athlete Refugee Team member Otmane Nait-Hammou is making a habit of rubbing elbows with some of the world's finest runners at World Championships.

In Doha last year, he lined up next to reigning world and Olympic champion Conseslus Kipruto in the opening round of the 3000m steeplechase. On the Gdynia start line, he stood should-to-shoulder with Joshua Cheptegei, the world record holder in the 5000 and 10,000m.

"If it's destiny or luck I don't know,” he says, laughing when reminded of the company he’s managed to keep at the start lines of his last two World Championship appearances. "It's an honour for me and I feel really proud.”

He’s also taking great pride in what he managed to achieve in Gdynia representing the Athlete Refugee Team.

On Saturday, Nait-Hammou wasn’t the same athlete he was a year ago in the Qatari capital. There, starry-eyed and overwhelmed, he tumbled to the track on the first lap of his race and was the last to finish, more than 70 seconds after Kipruto. In Gdynia, he finished 67th in the field of 122, clocking 1:03:28 in his competitive debut over the distance, beating some of the world’s finest half-marathoners in the process.

The difference? Taking to the line as a fledgling professional athlete, both in practicality and in attitude.

An opportunity to train like a professional

Nait-Hammou began running in his native Morocco in 2012, a passion he continued to feed even when life threw challenges in his path. He went to France in 2015 to pursue his studies, but, unable to return to Morocco, he made the difficult decision to apply for asylum. That road took him to Sweden in 2016 where he watched, on a television in a refugee centre, a team of refugee athletes competing at the Rio Olympics.

Those moving images fuelled his imagination and his motivation. Three years later he himself would compete twice on the international stage, first at the World Cross Country Championships in Aarhus, Denmark, then again in Doha, modest outings that nonetheless helped him step up to the next level.

“A lot of things changed over the past year,” Nait-Hammou says. “I have a lot of solidarity and support that has changed my life." That includes sponsorship arrangements with On, his apparel sponsor, with the energy gel Maurten, from his French club ES Sartrouville and ongoing development support from World Athletics and Olympic Solidarity.

Together, he says, "these things have given me more confidence and motivation and excitement to train very hard, to push very hard in training. It's a huge difference from when you come to participate and when you come to perform.”

His increasingly professional arrangement allowed him to attend a training camp for the first time, a month-long stint at altitude in Font-Remeu, France, in July and August where he logged 150 to 160 kilometres per week for four straight weeks. It was a type of training he’d never attempted before. “The first week was tough. I was really tired. But then the second week was better, and the third even better.”

It also brought results. On 29 August, he improved his steeplechase best to 8:51.07 at a French regional meeting in Decines Charpieu, his first race in seven months. Two weeks later he finished seventh at the French championships. In between he won a regional 10km in 30:50.

All that set him up well for Gdynia.

“I felt confident at the start line, because I had the opportunity to train and prepare like a professional. That made a big change in my life and my approach. I can see in training that I am getting better. I'm not the same person I was in Doha.”

“I never ran under 30 minutes. Never. I'm still in shock. I still haven't realised what I’ve done. I broke my 10k PB inside a half marathon. In my first half marathon. And in a world championship. It's crazy.”

"I'm starting to think about doing some really strong training this winter for a good marathon early next year," he says, and then focus on the steeplechase during the track season. "I want to go to the marathon for a new adventure. I am excited and motivated for that.

“I'm not thinking the same after Gdynia,” he continues. “I hope I gave the inspiration to other refugees to do better than me in the next World Championships.

“I didn’t come this time to participate. I came to perform. We get the support from World Athletics, from my sponsors, to come to the World Championships, so I wanted to show that we can perform like other athletes. That refugees can be like normal people.

"I beat some Swedish athletes, I beat some Spanish runners. I beat some of the best athletes from other countries, who are all very good athletes. I feel really proud of that and that I was able to represent 69 million people from around the world, to show that we can do it.”

(10/20/2020) Views: 107 ⚡AMP
by World Athletics
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World Half Marathon Championships

World Half Marathon Championships

The first one was first held in 1992. The collaboration with the world half marathon championships allows the Trinidad Alfonso Foundation to continue its strategy of supporting sports events that help to position València as the city of running. It has been the main contributor to the Valencia Marathon and Half Marathon for the past five years. The Spanish Federation...

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Kiplimo makes history for Uganda at World Athletics Half Marathon Championships Gdynia 2020

For the first time in the 28-year history of this event, a Ugandan athlete stood proud atop the podium, but it wasn’t the one most expected. In the men’s race at the World Athletics Half Marathon Championships Gdynia 2020 on Saturday (17), it was Jacob Kiplimo and not Joshua Cheptegei who reigned supreme, the 19-year-old coming of age with his first global title at senior level.

With a devastating surge over the last of the four laps, no one could live with Kiplimo and he hit the line a delighted champion in a championship record of 58:49, with Kenya’s Kibiwott Kandie second in 58:54 and Ethiopia’s Amedework Walelegn third in 59:08.

Next in was Cheptegei, who had lost contact with the leaders with a little less than five kilometres to run, the king of the track demoted to fourth place on the roads but rewarded with a swift time of 59:21 on his debut at the distance.

“I couldn’t give more than that,” said Cheptegei, who set a world 10,000m record in Valencia just 10 days ago. “I have been training more for 5000m and 10,000m so I was not well prepared for it, but I’m very happy – running a sub-60 is really special for me. My body was really going very well but I discovered I still had some fatigue in the legs.”

In a race of outstanding quality, the first 10 runners broke 60 minutes, the first time that ever happened at the event and just the second time it has ever happened. This, despite a relatively pedestrian start that saw the leading contenders cruise through the opening lap waiting for one another to make a decisive move.

No Ugandan had ever won an individual medal in 23 previous editions of the event – their one team medal a men’s bronze in 2004 – but the nation has been a rising force in distance running these past few years so today’s result came as no surprise. Kiplimo, after all, had clocked a world-leading 7:26.64 for 3000m in Rome last month and 12:48.63 for 5000m so his credentials were unquestioned, and he had followed Cheptegei home at last year’s World Cross Country Championships.

His only half marathon before today was the 1:01:53 he ran in Kampala last year but from the outset today, he looked most at home at the distance.

In contrast to the women’s race, the men’s race set off at a conservative tempo, the leading contenders happy to coast through the opening 5km in 14:20 as Switzerland’s Julien Wanders towed them along out front.

A leading pack of 23 went through 10km in 28:23, and the gears slowly began to shift in the third lap, with Kandie and Ethiopia’s Guye Adola applying some pressure. Kandie stepped the pace up even more as he clicked through 15km in 42:17 and clocked the first sub-14-minute 5km split of the race with 13:54.

It whittled the leading pack to 11 with a lap to go, with Cheptegei passing the bell a few seconds behind Kandie in eighth place. Kandie was soon joined by Kiplimo as they ran uphill and as he saw the gaps open behind to Cheptegei, Kiplimo kept the pressure on, building a 15-metre lead over his teammate.

Kandie, too, began to fall off pace behind the smooth-striding Kiplimo, but with less than 3km to run he clawed his way back to Kiplimo’s shoulder. The pace now was red-hot, Kiplimo surging to 20km in 55:55, a 13:37 5km split giving him a four-second lead over Kandie as he ran downhill towards the coast for the final time.

Kandie refused to lie down, chasing Kiplimo for all he was worth as they neared the finish in a bid to keep the men’s crown in Kenya for the fourth successive championships, following Geoffrey Kamworor’s three straight wins between 2014 and 2018. But he simply couldn’t close down the advantage and he had to make do with silver.

“I feel great, it was my first time at the World Half Marathon Championships and I won!” said Kiplimo. “It is hard to explain, because I am full of emotion. Unbelievable. The weather was really good, as were the conditions and course. I'm so grateful for everyone who has supported me.”

Kandie led Kenya to gold in the team event, with Leonard Barsoton’s 59:34 and Benard Kimeli’s 59:42 giving them a cumulative time of 2:58:10. Ethiopia took team silver with 2:58:25, and Uganda bronze with 2:58:39. All three teams finished inside the previous championship record.

(10/17/2020) Views: 159 ⚡AMP
by World Athletics
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World Half Marathon Championships

World Half Marathon Championships

The first one was first held in 1992. The collaboration with the world half marathon championships allows the Trinidad Alfonso Foundation to continue its strategy of supporting sports events that help to position València as the city of running. It has been the main contributor to the Valencia Marathon and Half Marathon for the past five years. The Spanish Federation...

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Sebastian Coe said on Friday he embraced new track technology that features pacemaking lights, a system used to great effect in two stunning world records last week

World Athletics president Sebastian Coe said on Friday he embraced new track technology that features pacemaking lights, a system used to great effect in two stunning world records last week.Ugandan Joshua Cheptegei (men's 10,000m) and Ethiopia's Letesenbet Gidey (women's 5,000m) blew two longstanding records apart in Valencia.

Both athletics had a team of metronomic pacemakers around them who utilised Wavelight technology -- a trackside visual time guidance system which lights up to indicate the world record pace."You have to innovate, there's no question about that," Coe said in Gdynia, Poland, ahead of Saturday's world half-marathon races. 

While acknowledging there was a balance to be struck, Coe argued that technological advances were paramount in attracting new audiences.

"You need to create a connection and the key connection is understanding.

"Pace lights I have no problem with. Our one-day meetings are about entertainment and I think Wavelight that allow people on television, to understand a little bit more about the incredible talent, the incredible talent, the incredible speeds our competitors are running at actually lends to the type of understanding I want."

Coe also argued that pacemakers had been around for decades, notably citing Roger Bannister's first sub-four-minute mile as a "pace-made event".

(10/16/2020) Views: 87 ⚡AMP
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World Half Marathon Championships

World Half Marathon Championships

The first one was first held in 1992. The collaboration with the world half marathon championships allows the Trinidad Alfonso Foundation to continue its strategy of supporting sports events that help to position València as the city of running. It has been the main contributor to the Valencia Marathon and Half Marathon for the past five years. The Spanish Federation...

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Joshua Cheptegei of Uganda says he’s under no pressure to deliver at Saturday’s World Half Marathon Championships in Gdynia

Distance running’s triple world record holder Joshua Cheptegei of Uganda says he’s under no pressure to deliver at Saturday’s World Half Marathon Championships in Gdynia, Poland.

Cheptegei said he is not really bothered by the weather and competition in Gdynia, having already achieved what he had planned for from track despite the Covid-19 challenges.

“For me what is important is that I finished my track season well. A debut in the half marathon won’t put much pressure on me,” said Cheptegei, who is proud of having set two world records within seven weeks this year in the 5,000 and 10,000 metres.

The weather in Gdynia will range from between six to 11 degrees on the competition day.

The Ugandan lowered the previous mark of 26:17.53 set by Kenenisa Bekele on August 26, 2005 in Brussels to cement his standing as the new track sensation.

The 24-year-old 10,000m world champion had on August 14 in Monaco wiped out Bekele’s 16-year-old world record over the 5,000m after breaking the five-kilometre world record on the streets of Monaco in February.

In his first track race since the advent of coronavirus early this year, Cheptegei clocked 12:35.35 to beat Bekele’s previous record by two seconds.

Heading into Valencia last week, Cheptegei only had the 18th quickest time over 10,000m with a best in Doha of 26:48.36, over half a minute outside the record.

The Ugandan team to Poland this weekend also has 2018 World Under-20 Championships 10,000m silver medallist Jacob Kiplimo, who also played second fiddle to Cheptegei in last year’s World Cross Country Championships in Uganda’s 1-2 finish.

Kiplimo’s only other half marathon experience is his victory at Kampala Half Marathon in 1:01:53 in November last year.

Others in the Uganda team are Moses Kibet (1:00:59), Victor Kiplagat (1:00:16), Abel Chebet (1:01:41) and Stephen Kissa (1:00:00).

(10/15/2020) Views: 135 ⚡AMP
by Ayumba Ayodi
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World Half Marathon Championships

World Half Marathon Championships

The first one was first held in 1992. The collaboration with the world half marathon championships allows the Trinidad Alfonso Foundation to continue its strategy of supporting sports events that help to position València as the city of running. It has been the main contributor to the Valencia Marathon and Half Marathon for the past five years. The Spanish Federation...

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Former Africa Cross Country Champion Leonard Barsoton, banks on team work to take down the Ugandans

Japan-based Leonard Barsoton has said that Kenya will rely on team work to down the challenge of Uganda and Ethiopia at the World Half Marathon Championships this Saturday in Gdynia, Poland.

Kenyan athletes will be heading to the world road race intent on retaining the men’s title currently held  by Geoffrey Kamworor  following his triumph in Valencia, Spain in 2018.

Kamworor won in 1:00:02 ahead of Bahrain’s Abraham Cheroben, who timed 1:00:22 while Eritrea’s Aron Kifle was third in 1:00:31.

This year Kamworor will not be competing but a strong team has been selected by Athletics Kenya and vowed to keep the crown home.

Kibiwott Kandie, fresh from winning Prague Half Marathon, will lead his compatriots Morris Munene, Japan-based Leonard Barsoton, Bernard Kipkorir and Bernard Kimeli in the Gdynia assault.

Nation Sport caught up with the 2014 Africa Cross Country champion Barsoton in Eldoret, Uasin Gishu County where he had gone for the mandatory  Covid-19 tests a requirement before their travel.

With the defending champion Kamworor missing in the start list, Barsoton said Kenya’s work was cut out for them particularly considering the threat set by double world record holder in 5,000m and 10,000m Joshua Cheptegei of Uganda.

“We shall run as a team. The challenge is that we have been training differently and everyone has his own techniques of reacting but we hope for the best,” he said.

The in-form Cheptegei will lead a Ugandan team that also has Moses Kibet, Jacob Kiplimo, Abel Chebet and Stephen Kissa.Barsoton, whose career has been on the rise since he relocated to Japan in 2012, two years after completing high school, is relishing the challenge.

He has competed in the last three editions of the World Half Marathon Championship and will no doubt be a key plank in Team Kenya’s strategy to keep the men’s crown.

In Valencia, Barsoton finished 12th in a time of 1:01:14, a result he was not happy with but on the positive, learned about his shortcoming. He said he had a problem when he entered the race which he traced to his training and has worked to ensure he was ready for the Poland race.

My training has gone on well and we are ready to travel and meet other competitors after a long wait due to the coronavirus.

“It’s not easy when you are training alone because we are used to group training which pushes you to the limit. I believe since April I have done enough and I will be ready to fight for a podium finish on Saturday,” he said.

(10/12/2020) Views: 119 ⚡AMP
by Bernard Rotich
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World Half Marathon Championships

World Half Marathon Championships

The first one was first held in 1992. The collaboration with the world half marathon championships allows the Trinidad Alfonso Foundation to continue its strategy of supporting sports events that help to position València as the city of running. It has been the main contributor to the Valencia Marathon and Half Marathon for the past five years. The Spanish Federation...

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What the fastest runners can learn from Joshua Cheptegei

Joshua Cheptegei made history on Wednesday when he set the 10,000m world record with a 26:11.00 run in Valencia. Cheptegei is arguably the best runner alive, and while he is riding an incredible high right now, it wasn’t long ago that he faced an enormous low after a massive mid-race collapse in 2017. Refusing to let this derail his career, Cheptegei pushed forward, and that is why he made it to where he is today.

While you probably won’t ever come close to Cheptegei’s level, that doesn’t mean you can’t learn from his career. If you’re facing disappointments or tough times in running, channel your inner Cheptegei and trust that you’ll eventually climb out of this rut. 

In front of a home crowd at the 2017 World Cross Country Championships in Kampala, Uganda, Cheptegei, then 20 years old, was on his way to the biggest win of his young career. Cheptegei had led for most of the race, and he had a 50-metre lead on Kenya’s Geoffrey Kamworor in second place. With less than a kilometre to go and the championship within reach, Cheptegei began to unravel, and he was eventually passed, not just by Kamworor, but by the next 28 runners as well. It was one of the biggest implosions in running history, and Cheptegei went from first place to 30th in the blink of an eye.

Many people would have let this result define them, but not Cheptegei. Later that same year, he ran to a silver medal in the 10,000m at the world championships. In 2018, he won gold in the 5,000m and 10,000m at the Commonwealth Games, and he ended the year with the 15K world record. The following year, he upped his game once more, first redeeming himself with a win at the World Cross Country Championships in Denmark, then winning 10,000m world championship gold in Doha. His finale for 2019 was another world-record performance, this time in the 10K (although his mark was bettered by Rhonex Kipruto in early 2020). 

Finally, in 2020 — the season that almost didn’t happen because of COVID-19 — Cheptegei had the year of his life, breaking world records in the 5K on the road in February, the 5,000m in August and then the 10,000m on Wednesday. 

Odds are that you won’t have a collapse like Cheptegei did in Kampala in 2017, but even if you do, he’s proof that you can recover from it. Everyone will have slumps in their careers, whether in training or racing or both. But if you believe in your training and trust in your abilities, you’ll eventually leave those troubles behind, replacing them with PBs, race wins and great results.  

(10/12/2020) Views: 112 ⚡AMP
by Ben Snider-McGrath
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Uganda's Joshua Cheptegei smashed the men's 10,000m world record as Ethiopia's Letesenbet Gidey broke that of the women's 5,000m in Valencia

Cheptegei, 24, clocked 26 minutes 11.00 seconds to beat Kenenisa Bekele's 15-year-old time by more than six seconds.

Gidey, 22, clocked 14 minutes 6.62 seconds to better the 14mins 11.15secs set by Tirunesh Dibaba in 2008.

They achieved the feats at the NN Valencia World Record Day, a one-off event taking place in the Spanish city.

"I'm happy," said Gidey, who won 10,000m silver at the 2019 World Championships in Doha. "This has been a long-time dream. It is very big for me."

Bekele's previous world record time of 26mins 17.53secs had been the longest standing men's 10,000m world record in history.

Cheptegei's success marks his fourth world record in 10 months, having broken the 10km road best in December and the 5km road record in February.

At the Monaco Diamond League in August, he broke another of Bekele's world records, beating his 16-year-old mark in the 5,000m by two seconds.

The World Record Day, in which both Cheptegei and Gidey had pacemakers, took place at Valencia's Turia stadium with 400 people present.

(10/07/2020) Views: 100 ⚡AMP
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Ugandan Joshua Cheptegei is setting his sights on the 10,000m mark at a special event in Valencia on Wednesday

Less than two months after breaking the 5,000 metres world record, Ugandan Joshua Cheptegei is setting his sights on the 10,000m mark at a special event in Valencia on Wednesday.

Gold medallist in the 10,000 at last year’s World Athletics Championships in Doha, Cheptegei is hoping to beat the 26 minutes, 17.53 set by Kenenisa Bekele in 2005.

Cheptegei, 23, took Ethiopian Bekele’s 5,000m record at the Diamond League in Monaco in August, wiping 1.99 seconds off the 16-year-old mark when he crossed the line in 12:35.36.

His Dutch-based NN Running Team has organised the World Record Day and he will count on pacers who include former Dutch champion Roy Hoornweg as well as Australian Matt Ramsden and Kenyan Nicholas Kipkorir, both world championship finalists in 2019.

Although there will be little support from the largely empty stands, Cheptegei will be helped by Wavelight technology, which flashes lights on the inside of the track to indicate a specific pace.

Cheptegei has already made history over the distance in Valencia, smashing a 10-year 10km world record last December by six seconds, wearing the Nike Zoom Vaporfly shoes which have caused a huge debate in athletics.

“I am very excited to be given the opportunity to target the 10,000m world record,” Cheptegei said last month. “As my performance in Monaco showed, I am in outstanding form, so I would like to make the most of my current shape.

“Kenenisa’s 10,000m world record is one of the toughest in the books, but my training continues to go well and this gives me real confidence I can set another world record.”

(10/06/2020) Views: 96 ⚡AMP
by Reuters
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Run with Paula Radcliffe in the fast 10k virtually

The World Athletics Half Marathon Championships are just a couple of weeks away, and race organizers in Gdynia, Poland, have provided one last challenge ahead of the free virtual mass participation race.

The Fast 10k with Paula Radcliffe is the final test of fitness for participants who plan to run the half-marathon, and they can do it (virtually) alongside one of the best marathoners in history, after whom the challenge is named. 

Radcliffe is an Olympian, a British and European record-holder many times over and the former women’s marathon world record-holder. Her marathon best was only recently beaten by Brigid Kosgei, who lowered Radcliffe’s longstanding record of 2:15:25 at the Chicago Marathon in 2019. In a promotional video for the Gdynia event and her virtual challenge, Radcliffe says the “World Half Marathon Championships have a very special place in my heart.

It was my first world title. I won three World Half Marathon Championships and all of them were extremely special to me.” She won the world half-marathon titles in 2000, 2001 and 2003, the same year she set her marathon world record. 

This is the last of the virtual “warmup events” that have been organized for competitors by the Gdynia 2020 team. There was also a one-mile run with World Athletics head Seb Coe and a 5K with British Olympian Eilish McColgan, among other events. It’s easy to participate. Simply head to the event website, download the Gdynia 2020 tracking app and head off on your 10K challenge in preparation for your virtual half-marathon. 

The mass participation race was cancelled and changed to a virtual format for 2020 due to COVID-19, but the elite race is still set to go ahead. The race has a number of big names ready to run, and it should be an exciting one to watch.

Newly-minted 5,000m world record-holder Joshua Cheptegei will be debuting at the distance in Gdynia, and he will be lining up alongside a strong Canadian team that’s made up of Trevor Hofbauer, Justin Kent, Phil Parrot-Migas, Benjamin Preisner and Thomas Toth. The lone woman heading to Poland to represent Canada is former national half and full marathon record-holder Rachel Cliff. 

For anyone interested in participating in either the The Fast 10k with Paula Radcliffe challenge or the virtual half-marathon, it’s not too late to sign up.

(10/02/2020) Views: 124 ⚡AMP
by Ben Snider-McGrath
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World Half Marathon Championships

World Half Marathon Championships

The first one was first held in 1992. The collaboration with the world half marathon championships allows the Trinidad Alfonso Foundation to continue its strategy of supporting sports events that help to position València as the city of running. It has been the main contributor to the Valencia Marathon and Half Marathon for the past five years. The Spanish Federation...

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Coach Addy Ruiter on star pupil Cheptegei, he will be the new standard

When Joshua Cheptegei made history to wipe 1.99 seconds from Kenenisa Bekele’s world 5000m record in Monaco in August, it generated an outpouring of ecstasy in a mild-mannered Dutchman situated some 9000 kilometres away in Uganda.

“I’d been following the race by livestream and after he set the record I was leaping around the house, I was very happy,” explains Cheptegei’s coach, Addy Ruiter.

Yet despite the inevitable nerves Ruiter experienced that night, he was also very optimistic.

Some four weeks earlier, Cheptegei completed a track session on a far from standard grass oval track in Kapchorwa which filled his coach with confidence.

“That day, Joshua showed me he was in 12:30 shape (for the 5000m) and at a much higher level than Bekele’s 12:37 (5000m world record),” he said. “Knowing he was that much further ahead of the world record was important because we knew the likely hot conditions he would face in Monaco would slow him down a little.”

Still aged just 23, the world cross country and 10,000m champion appears armed with all the qualities to become the dominant distance runner of his generation.

After taking down Bekele’s world 5000m record his next target is the Ethiopian’s 15-year-old world 10,000m record of 26:17.53 which he will attack on October 7, in Valencia.

Some ten days later the Ugandan sensation will make his eagerly-awaited debut over the 21.1km distance at the World Athletics Half Marathon Championships Gdynia 2020 in Poland where he will look to claim his first world road title.

‘Coaching was in my blood’

His potential looks limitless, yet behind every great athlete is always a great coach and there is little doubt the avuncular Ruiter ticks all the boxes as a knowledgeable and innovative foil for the super-talented Cheptegei.

Born and raised in the small city of Papendrecht in western Holland, Ruiter was a handy schoolboy athlete but with a curious nature he was quickly drawn to coaching and recalls guiding a number of runners as a high school student.

“Coaching was in my blood,” he says.

Yet running and coaching back then could not dislodge his passion for travel. With an interest in the world around him and a desire to experience different cultures, he would spend periods of time working to save enough money to visit many far flung parts of the world.

He travelled extensively through Asia, spent prolonged periods in Australia and in total has visited 97 countries around the globe.

The Dutchman re-engaged with running for a short period of time around the age of 30. He trained hard and whittled his 10km personal best down to 30 minutes. Then the travel bug took over once again.

“I was someone with a talent but not enough of a talent to train so for a long period of time,” he adds.

On Gdynia: ‘he is capable of winning’

That next target is the world 10,000m record followed by his half marathon debut in Gdynia. There will be huge expectations around Cheptegei, but Ruiter is slightly cautious.

“It was sad they were forced to postpone the original race back in March because we had enjoyed the perfect preparation,” he says.

“In recent months we have been preparing to run the 5000m and 10,000m world records, so this time it has not been a perfect preparation. But even without an ideal build up he is capable of winning the race.”

In the longer term the priority is the track climaxing with the 2024 Paris Olympics, from which point the road and the marathon will be the main priority and of all surfaces, Ruiter believes the road is the one best suited to the Ugandan.

(09/28/2020) Views: 127 ⚡AMP
by World Athletics
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Joshua Cheptegei and Jacob Kiplimo lead Ugandan team for World Athletics Half Marathon Championships Gdynia 2020

World 10,000m champion Joshua Cheptegei and world 3000m leader Jacob Kiplimo are among the athletes selected to represent Uganda at the World Athletics Half Marathon Championships Gdynia 2020 on 17 October.

Cheptegei, the world cross-country champion, broke the world 5000m record at the Wanda Diamond League meeting in Monaco last month with 12:35.36 and is targeting a tilt on the 10,000m mark on 7 October before heading to Poland.

Kiplimo, meanwhile, won the 5000m at the World Athletics Continental Tour meeting in Ostrava with a PB of 12:48.63 and then went on to triumph over 3000m at the Wanda Diamond League meeting in Rome in a world-leading 7:26.64, breaking the Ugandan record and becoming the fastest teenager in history for the distance.

Given their exploits on the track in recent months, Cheptegei and Kiplimo will be among the medal favourites when they take to the startline in Gdynia – despite the fact that both men will be making their half marathon debut.

They are joined on the team by 2009 world U20 cross-country bronze medallist Moses Kibet, Stephen Kissa and Abel Chebet.

Juliet Chekwel, who holds the Ugandan records for 10,000m (31:37.99), half marathon (1:09:45) and the marathon (2:23:13), leads the women’s team.

Doreen Chemutai, Doreen Chesang, Rachael Zena Chebet make up the rest of the Ugandan women’s roster.

Ugandan team for Gdynia

Men: Abel Chebet, Joshua Cheptegei, Moses Kibet, Jacob Kiplimo, Stephen Kissa

Women: Juliet Chekwel, Doreen Chemutai, Doreen Chesang, Rachael Zena Chebet

(09/21/2020) Views: 188 ⚡AMP
by World Athletics
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World Half Marathon Championships

World Half Marathon Championships

The first one was first held in 1992. The collaboration with the world half marathon championships allows the Trinidad Alfonso Foundation to continue its strategy of supporting sports events that help to position València as the city of running. It has been the main contributor to the Valencia Marathon and Half Marathon for the past five years. The Spanish Federation...

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Joshua Cheptegei targets world 10,000m record in Valencia

World 10,000m champion Joshua Cheptegei hopes to create another magical moment in his rising career as he plans an assault on the world 10,000m record at the NN Valencia World Record Day on Wednesday 7 October at Turia Stadium in Valencia, Spain.

The one-off event aims to capitalise on the Ugandan’s stunning recent form, which last month saw him lower Kenenisa Bekele’s world 5000m record in Monaco. In Valencia, Joshua will be targeting the stunning mark of 26:17.53 set by Kenenisa in Brussels 15 years ago – the longest standing men’s 10,000m world record in history.

As a further measure of the quality of the world 10,000m record, no athlete other than Bekele has come within five seconds of the time. But following Joshua’s 1.99-second improvement on the Ethiopian’s 5000m mark in Monaco, the Ugandan will be confident he can mount a strong challenge in Valencia.

“I am very excited to be given the opportunity to target the 10,000m world record,” said Cheptegei, whose current personal best for the distance is 26:48.36. “As my performance in Monaco showed, I am in outstanding form, so I would like to make the most of my current shape by attacking the 10,000m world record.

“Kenenisa’s 10,000m world record is one of the toughest in the books, but my training continues to go well and this gives me real confidence I can set another world record. I have many happy memories in Valencia, having set the world 10km road record there last year, so hopefully we can once again create something truly special in Valencia, were running plays such an important role.”

In an attempt to add the 10,000m world record to the 5000m track world record and his current world road records over 5km and 15km, Cheptegei  will be utilising world-class pace making support as well as the innovative Wavelight technology.

Following his world record bid in Valencia, Cheptegei plans to make his debut over the 21.1km distance at the rescheduled World Athletics Half Marathon Championships Gdynia 2020 on 17 October.

(09/03/2020) Views: 102 ⚡AMP
by World Athletics
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World under-20, 5,000m champion Edward Zakayo has shifted his focus to the 2020 Olympics Games in Tokyo

After missing out on a chance to represent Kenya at the postponed World U20 championships in Nairobi next year, world under-20 5,000m champion Edward Zakayo is has shifted his focus to the 2020 Olympics Games in Tokyo, Japan.

The Olympics and the U20 championships, both of which were set for last month, were postponed due to the coronavirus pandemic.

The 5,000m Olympic title has been proved elusive for Kenyan athletes since 1988 in Seoul, South Korea, when John Ngugi won the event.

However, Zakayo, the All Africa Games champion said: “It is a bad feeling after missing out on the world under 20 since I was prepared to win gold and close the junior ranks especially on home soil."

"I missed the world under 18 title in 2017 to Selemon Barega and I was not happy. Even though I have revenged twice, at the world under 20 in Tampere and at the All Africa Games, I was not satisfied at all.” 

Speaking during the Athletics Kenya Food Distribution programme at the Kapsait training camp, the reigning Commonwealth Games 5,000m bronze medalist  added: “The federation should supervise how the 5,000m runners train and help them like the Ugandan federation is helping Joshua Cheptegei (the world record holder over the distance)."

Apart from missing out on the world under 20, Zakayo will be forced to repeat Form Four and he fears this might prove a challenge to his ambitions.

"The national trials will be hard nut to crack. Without making it at the trials, you can’t feature in the national team for Olympics. Last year I missed out on the world championships in Doha, Qatar since despite featuring at the the All Africa Games, there were still trials to Doha,” added Zakayo.

(09/01/2020) Views: 180 ⚡AMP
by Emmanuel Sabuni
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Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games

Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games

Fifty-six years after having organized the Olympic Games, the Japanese capital will be hosting a Summer edition for the second time, originally scheduled from July 24 to August 9, 2020, the games were postponed due to coronavirus outbreak, the postponed Tokyo Olympics will be held from July 23 to August 8 in 2021, according to the International Olympic Committee decision....

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Uganda's Joshua Cheptegei now eyes 10,000m record

Freshly minted 5,000 meters world record holder Joshua Cheptegei will be looking to smash the 10,000m world record before the Olympics.

However, the Ugandan, 23,  said it will depend on if organisers of Diamond League races and other major events include the 5,000m and 10,000m races.

Cheptegei, who is also the World Cross Country Championships 10km champion, shattered Ethiopian legend Kenenisa Bekele’s 16-year-old world 5,000m record on Friday last week, setting a new time of 12 minutes and 35.36 seconds during the Diamond League leg in Monaco.

“I would like to improve my 5,000m world record as well as take a shot at the 10,000m world record. I’m in good shape. Let’s hope more long distance events on the track will be organized,” he said.

Bekele, who has since moved to road running, holds the 10,000m world record, having broken it twice - the first time on June 8, 2004 (26:20.31) in Ostrava, Czech Republic and on August 26, 2005 (26:17.53) in Brussels, Belgium.

Cheptegei is alive to the fact that staying healthy is key during the Covid-19 pandemic. “It’s hard to predict the future since it’s in God’s hands. The best you can do is to strive to remain healthy,”  he said.

The 10,000m race had not been held as a Diamond League event for over five years and World Athletics (WA) scrapped the competition entirely from the Diamond League alongside 5,000m and 3,000m steeplechase last year. The longest track race is 3,000m but events that will accommodate 5,000m and 10,000m won’t have them featured on prime time.

Only four events have been lined up in this year’s Diamond League series that have been delayed with some events being scrapped owing to Covid-19.

The next events are in Stockholm, Sweden on August 23; Rome, Italy on September 18 and Doha on September 25.

(08/20/2020) Views: 134 ⚡AMP
by Ayumba Ayodi
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Everything you need to know about Nike’s newly-released plated spikes

Nike has quietly been working on two pairs of spikes that every runner will want to get their hands on – they’re called the Dragonfly and the Air Zoom Victory and were released earlier this summer and have since sold out worldwide. The shoes are lightweight but more padded with the addition of ZoomX foam, the same material first used in the Vaporfly and perfected in subsequent models. 

The Dragonfly is what Mohammed Ahmed wore to break his own Canadian 5,000m record and run one of the fastest times over the distance in history, and what Joshua Cheptegei wore to break the 5,000m world record on Friday. That’s two top-10 5,000m times in the space of one month in this particular pair of shoes. 

How does this compare to Nike’s road shoes?

The Dragonfly shoe seems to be everything that the Vaporfly is on the road. After companies were going more and more minimal for years (with the exception of Hoka) Nike started going maximal. While restrictions will limit how high this spike can go, its softer material and bigger stack height set it apart from the other shoes on the market. 

Before the Dragonfly, spikes had almost no cushioning. Now, with the addition of the full-length plate and a decent amount of ZoomX foam, the shoe will feel plush relative to spikes most middle distance runners are used to. 

While this shoe is more expensive than other spikes on the market, it isn’t shockingly priced. Most runners will spend around C$150 on a pair of good spikes and the Dragonfly sets you back $195 – a price increase but much more affordable than the $330 sticker on the NEXT%. 

Designed for events ranging from the 1,500m to 10,000m, this shoe will be on the feet of many runners through winter 2020 and summer 2021.

The Dragonfly isn’t the only Nike shoe that dropped this summer. The Air Zoom Victory is also built for middle distance running, but this shoe has an air bag and carbon-plate along with ZoomX foam. Slightly more expensive than the Dragonfly (coming in at $230), this shoe can be worn for any event from the 800m through to the 5,000m. 

These shoes are going fast and are currently sold out in almost every size except for men’s 13 and 14. Much like Nike’s road shoes, if runners want to get their hands on these spikes, they’ll need to watch for a re-release date and act quickly. 

(08/18/2020) Views: 123 ⚡AMP
by Madeleine Kelly
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Joshua Cheptegei thanks Kenenisa Bekele for inspiring him

Joshua Cheptegei shaved two seconds from Kenenisa Bekele’s world 5000m record in Monaco and here we take a look at their remarkable runs

On crossing the 5000m finish line with a time of 12:35.36 on the clock at the Louis II Stadium in Monaco on Friday night, Joshua Cheptegei smashed a world record which had stood for 16 years, two months, and 14 days.

The Ugandan was aged just seven when Ethiopia’s Kenenisa Bekele stormed to his historic 12:37.35 in Hengelo. Until Friday night, no athlete since had come within five seconds of the mark, with Selemon Barega going closest with his 12:43.02 in Brussels in 2018.

Ahead of the meeting in Monaco, which was the first more traditional style Diamond League event of this pandemic-affected summer, Cheptegei was open about his goal.

“I believe if there is a time to attack the world record, it is this year,” he told the NN Running Team, of which both he and Bekele are a part.

“It is now or never.”

Cheptegei gave his thanks to Bekele for inspiring him, while Bekele – who ran his 26:17.53 world 10,000m record the year after his 5000m mark – offered his congratulations to his younger team-mate.

“I’ve learned that anything is possible, if you have the right mindset and believe,” said Cheptegei. “I really thank Kenenisa so much for inspiring me when I started running.

“He has always been a big inspiration and motivation to me.

“This record is a special moment for me and I like to thank Kenenisa for his inspiration.”

In an Instagram post, Bekele wrote: “I have great memories of running my world record in Hengelo 16 years ago. It is very difficult to run any world record. Congratulations to my teammate Joshua Cheptegei for running a new world record for 5000m tonight in Monaco.”

To which Cheptegei replied: “You are forever my all time role model and idol. Your career inspires me the most. I am forever grateful to emulate and follow your footsteps.”

(08/18/2020) Views: 142 ⚡AMP
by Athletics Weekly
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Lots of fast times in Monaco including a new 5000m world record

Ugandan Joshua Cheptegei broke a 16-year-old world record in the 5000m by nearly two seconds, clocking 12:35.36 in Monaco on Friday.

Cheptegei, the 2019 World 10,000m champion who reportedly needed 80 hours to travel from Uganda for the Diamond League meet, took 1.99 seconds off Ethiopian legend Kenenisa Bekele‘s world record from 2004. Bekele is also the 10,000m world-record holder and the second-fastest marathoner in history.

“It took a lot of mind setting to keep being motivated this year because so many people are staying at home, but you have to stay motivated,” Cheptegei said, according to organizers. “I pushed myself, I had the right staff with me, the right coach.”

Cheptegei, 23, came into Monaco as the 73rd-fastest man in history with a personal best of 12:57.41. But he declared before the meet that the world record was his goal, given he had no Olympics or world championships to peak for this year.

“It is very difficult to run any world record,” was posted on the Instagram of Bekele, who is part of the NN Running Team with Cheptegei. “Congratulations to my teammate [Cheptegei].”

The Diamond League next moves to Stockholm on Aug. 23.

In other events Friday, Noah Lyles easily won a 200m after raising a black-gloved first before the start. More on Lyles’ gesture and victory here.

Donavan Brazier extended a year-plus 800m win streak, clocking 1:43.15 and holding off countryman Bryce Hoppel by .08. Brazier won his last seven meets, including national, world and Diamond League titles in 2019, when he broke a 34-year-old American record.

Olympic silver medalist Orlando Ortega of Spain won the 110m hurdles in 13.11 seconds, overtaking world champion Grant Holloway. Holloway, who won worlds in 13.10 last autumn, finished fourth in 13.19.

Timothy Cheruiyot followed his 2019 World title by clocking his second-fastest 1500m ever. The Kenyan recorded 3:28.45, holding off Norwegian 19-year-old Jakob Ingebrigtsen, who set a European record of 3:28.68.

Sifan Hassan, the world’s top female distance runner, dropped out of the 5000m with two and a half laps left while in the lead pack. Two-time world champion Hellen Obiri won in 14:22.12, surging past Ethiopian Letesenbet Gidey on the final lap.

Karsten Warholm ran the joint eighth-fastest 400m hurdles in history, a 47.10 against a field that lacked rivals Rai Benjamin and Abderrahman Samba. Warholm, the two-time world champion, ranks second in history with a personal best of 46.92, trailing only American Kevin Young‘s 46.78 from the 1992 Olympics.

American Lynna Irby won her Diamond League debut with a 50.50 in the 400m. Irby, the second-fastest American in 2018, failed to make the 2019 World team. On Friday, she beat Wadeline Jonathas, the top American in 2019.

(08/14/2020) Views: 118 ⚡AMP
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Joshua Cheptegei smashes 5000m world record in Monaco Diamond league

Joshua Cheptege is the new 5000m world record in a time of 12:35:36.He broke kenenisa Bekele record that stood out for 16 years with 2 seconds.He was followed in adistance by Kimeli from kenya 12:51:78 and Krop 13:11:32.

The 5km world record holder of 12:51 was pace by two pacekars making him crossed the first lap 60.00 inside world record.The pacers were lead by 24 years Uganda Kissa who helped him crossed 1000m in 2:31:7 which was almost world record tempo compared to Bekele's 2:33:2.

He looked comfortable maintaining every km in 2:31:3-9.The world record was in severe threat when he maintain every 400m under 61 seconds as he look calm and relaxed.His super running made him run every mile faster than Bekele when he broke world record.

The fastest lap that he ran was 59 seconds making him one of the tactical athlete in the world. .He looked full of energy when crossed the finish  smiling  while stopping the watch.Kimeli managed to run his pb of 12:51.

(08/14/2020) Views: 108 ⚡AMP
by Willie Korir
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Joshua Cheptegei will be eyeing the 5000 meters winner's prize in Monaco when he returns to the Diamond League this weekend

Unlike previous years, the Diamond League 2020 will not be a structured series of events leading to a final. Due to the coronavirus upheaval, only 11 instead of the planned 15 athletics meetings will take place this season.

There are all signs that Lady Luck will again smile at Cheptegei in the same European city-state where he broke 5km road world record early this year.Cheptegei, together with fellow world champion Halima Nakayi (1000m), Winnie Nannyondo (1000m), and Samuel Kisa (5000m) were flagged off by First Lady and Sports Minister Janet Museveni Saturday.

"Please take care to protect yourselves from COVID-19, remember that self-discipline is a big factor in the fight against this virus. God be with you," said Janet Museveni as she handed the athletes the national flag.

The Ugandans were, according to Monaco procedure, first subjected to a mandatory COVID-19 test.

Steeplechase star Conseslus Kipruto from Kenya failed the test and will accordingly miss the Monaco Diamond League event.The Ugandans left on a Uganda Airlines chartered flight to Nairobi on Saturday, then another to Monaco ahead of the August 14 event.

The race organizers of the Monaco event chartered the flights for the 10 Kenyan and four Ugandan athletes.The men's events in Monaco include 200m, 800m, 1,500m, 5,000m, 110m hurdles, 3,000m steeplechase, and pole vault, while women will compete in 100m, 400 m, 1,000m, 5,000m, triple jump and high jump.

Organizers also confirmed that top athletes including women's world record holder, triple jumper Yulimar Rojas from Venezuela, Dutch 1,500m world champion Sifan Hassan, 10,000m world champion Joshua Cheptegei and French hurdler Pascal Martinot-Lagarde will partake of in the events.

On June 26th, the Diamond League canceled its meets in Paris, France, and Eugene, in the United States because of the current restrictions on mass gatherings and international travel due to the coronavirus menace the world over.

Due to the global outbreak of the fatal respiratory disease, the Diamond League season could not start as planned in Doha on April 17.

Meetings have since been canceled in London, Rabat (in Morocco), and Zürich (in Switzerland) which was originally scheduled to host the season finale in September - while other events on the calendar were postponed due to the pandemic.

(08/10/2020) Views: 162 ⚡AMP
by James Bakama
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Warholm, Kipyegon, Cheruiyot and Kendricks are set to compete at the Wanda Diamond League meeting in Monaco on August 14

Herculis organizers have announced another four global champions who are set to compete at the Wanda Diamond League meeting in Monaco on August 14.

Two-time world 400m hurdles champion Karsten Warholm will compete in Monaco for the first time in his career. The 24-year-old, who set a world best for 300m hurdles at Oslo’s Impossible Games last month, will have one eye on Kevin Young’s meeting record of 47.60, set just five days after the US hurdler set a world record of 46.78 to win the 1992 Olympic title.

"I've always wanted to run in Monaco because of the track," said Warholm. "I know people have run fast there before, and I've trained there too. It’s a nice stadium and I know I might be able to run even faster on it.

"In Norway we've been able to train very well, so my shape is actually good," he added. "I was hoping to get a chance to test myself, so when the opportunity came for Monaco, that was nice."

Olympic 1500m champion Faith Kipyegon and training partner Timothy Cheruiyot, the world 1500m champion, will also be in action. Kipyegon, who’s also making her Herculis debut, will contest the 1000m in which she’ll face world 800m champion Halimah Nakaayi and European 1500m champion Laura Muir. Cheruiyot, meanwhile, will line up for his specialist distance to take on Jacob and Filip Ingebrigtsen.

Two-time world champion Sam Kendricks has been confirmed for the pole vault. The North American record-holder will face world record-holder Mondo Duplantis, whose participation was announced earlier this month.

Other clashes include Olympic silver medalist Orlando Ortega and world bronze medalist Pascal Martinot Lagarde in the 110m hurdles, Ukrainian duo Yaroslava Mahuchikh and Yuliya Levchenko and world heptathlon champion Katarina Johnson-Thompson in the high jump, and world bronze medalist Marie-Josee Ta Lou and Ajla del Ponte in the 100m.

They will all join the previously announced stars, including double world champion Sifan Hassan, world 5000m champion Hellen Obiri, world 200m champion Noah Lyles, two-time world triple jump champion Yulimar Rojas and world 10,000m champion Joshua Cheptegei.

(07/23/2020) Views: 143 ⚡AMP
by World Athletics
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Ugandan Joshua Cheptegei will target 5000m WR in Monaco

The postponement of the Tokyo Olympic Games to next July because of the coronavirus pandemic shattered plans for many sports stars including Ugandan Joshua Cheptegei.

After a perfect 2019 which included a World Cross-country title, the 5000m Diamond League trophy, 10000m world gold and the 10km World Record (WR), Cheptegei was staring at more glory this year.

He even intensified his credentials for the 10000m Olympic gold medal by taking 27 seconds off the previous mark to rewrite the 5km WR to 12:51 minutes at the Monaco Run in France on February 16.

Regardless, the coronavirus disruptions haven’t shifted Cheptegei’s eyes off the prize. “We have set strong targets which motivate him a lot,” his manager Jurrie van der Velden of Global Sports Communication (GSC) told Daily Monitor this week. The 23-year-old is set to return to Monaco for the 5000m race during the third leg of the Wanda Diamond League (DL) series at French Ligue 1 club AC Monaco’s home Stade Louis II on August 14.

This was agreed after the 5km WR five months ago. “We felt like Monaco DL in July would be a perfect moment to run 5000m as a last test for Olympics and we spoke with the organiser about it and he was supporting the idea,” says Jurrie.

But it is not just about Cheptegei gracing the Monaco track. “We are shooting for the WR. Monaco usually has very good weather conditions and a great track.”The postponement of the Tokyo Olympic Games to next July because of the coronavirus pandemic shattered plans for many sports stars including Ugandan Joshua Cheptegei.

After a perfect 2019 which included a World Cross-country title, the 5000m Diamond League trophy, 10000m world gold and the 10km World Record (WR), Cheptegei was staring at more glory this year.

He even intensified his credentials for the 10000m Olympic gold medal by taking 27 seconds off the previous mark to rewrite the 5km WR to 12:51 minutes at the Monaco Run in France on February 16.

Regardless, the coronavirus disruptions haven’t shifted Cheptegei’s eyes off the prize. “We have set strong targets which motivate him a lot,” his manager Jurrie van der Velden of Global Sports Communication (GSC) told Daily Monitor this week. The 23-year-old is set to return to Monaco for the 5000m race during the third leg of the Wanda Diamond League (DL) series at French Ligue 1 club AC Monaco’s home Stade Louis II on August 14.

This was agreed after the 5km WR five months ago. “We felt like Monaco DL in July would be a perfect moment to run 5000m as a last test for Olympics and we spoke with the organiser about it and he was supporting the idea,” says Jurrie.

But it is not just about Cheptegei gracing the Monaco track. “We are shooting for the WR. Monaco usually has very good weather conditions and a great track.”

The WR over the 12-and-a-half-lap race is at 12:37.45 set by Ethiopian Kenenisa Bekele on May 31, 2004 in Hengelo, Netherlands.

Since that feat last 16 years ago, his country mate Selemon Barega is the one who has come closest to that WR with 12:43.02 in Brussels, Belgium two years ago.

Going by his personal best of 12:57.41 which he set while winning the DL trophy in Zurich, Switzerland last August, Cheptegei is 20 seconds from the target but Jurrie believes the lockdown only got his act better.

“He’s doing well, even better than ever,” the Dutchman notes. However, Uganda still has travel restrictions in place with Entebbe Airport still closed because of Covd-19. GSC is planning on ways of taking Cheptegei to Monaco. “We’re working on that from various angles. Yeah it’s not easy, but if things were easy anyone would be successful,” added Jurrie. And WRs have fallen before at the Monaco DL. Last year, Dutch girl Sifan Hassan obliterated the mile WR to 4:12.33.

In 2018, Kenyan Beatrice Chepkoech posted the 3000m steeplechase WR of 8:44.32, so did Ethiopian Genzebe Dibaba deliver the 1500m best time ever in 2015.

(07/22/2020) Views: 145 ⚡AMP
by Darren Allan Kyeyune
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Organizers of the Herculis EBS Meeting have confirmed the first major stars set to compete at the Wanda Diamond League fixture in Monaco on August 14

World champions Yulimar Rojas and Sifan Hassan, world record holder Joshua Cheptegei and European 110m hurdles champion Pascal Martinot-Lagarde will all be on the slate when the series, disrupted this season by the global coronavirus pandemic, resumes at the Principality's Louis II Stadium.

Hassan broke the world record in the mile at this meeting last year, a pre-cursor to her historic 1500m/10,000m double victory at the World Championships. It wasn't announced which distance Hassan would run. The women's programme includes both 1000m and 5000m races.

The 27-year-old Dutchwoman hasn't yet competed in 2020, but Rojas and Cheptegei have, both displaying world record form.

Rojas, the two-time world indoor and outdoor champion in the triple jump, sailed to a world indoor record of 15.43m at the World Athletics Indoor Meeting in Madrid on 21 February. Five days earlier, Uganda's Cheptegei, 23, blasted through the streets of Monaco en route to a 12:51 world record at the Monaco Run 5km. He will contest the 5000m.

Martinot-Lagarde of France, a long-time favourite in Monaco, broke the French national record at this meeting with 12.95 in 2014. The 28-year-old raced to bronze at the World Championships last year.

(07/01/2020) Views: 175 ⚡AMP
by World Athletics
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Ugandan World and Olympic champion Joshua Cheptegei is excited to be featured in the worldwide virtual relay marathon due June 6 and 7

Joshua Cheptegei will be joining a star-studded group of runners, the likes of marathon superstar Eliud Kipchoge, Kenenisa Bekele and Geoffrey Kamworor.

With traditional races cancelled and postponed due to the coronavirus crisis, this virtual race will have each runner in the four-strong teams completing 10.5km.

Speaking ahead of the event, Cheptegei highlighted the importance of a collective effort in effectively bring athletics back to life during this pandemic.

“I think at this time, It’s not about pushing of course, It’s about trying to be organized and running together with the rest of the world in different locations,” the 2019 Doha World Championships gold medalist told teammate Diego, from Spain in a conversation.

Cheptegei is expected to race on Sunday as he helps other runners from different parts of the world to revive the spirit of athleticism.

Runners around the world can join in the event with teams of four of their own.

If a participate is running alone, they will be matched with runners around the world to complete a team. The NN Running Team athletes will be randomly added to 10 of the participating teams.

A digital relay will also take place on Facebook Live, with each segment featuring athletes, run crews and other special guests talking about how they’re getting active on Global Running Day.

(06/06/2020) Views: 202 ⚡AMP
by Edgar Kazibwe
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I was overcome with sadness - Kenyan Kipchoge said after the London Marathon postponement

Kenyan Eliud Kipchoge took two weeks to get over the news of the London Marathon postponement, it was revealed on Wednesday.

The race was scheduled for April, with Kipchoge the defending champion, before it was postponed and rescheduled for October due to the novel coronavirus pandemic.

“It was painful for me when London was postponed,” Kipchoge told Runner’s World.

“I was at peak fitness before that race. I took two weeks to be sad, and then I went back to training. This is life.”

Kipchoge set the men’s marathon record of 2:01:39 at the Berlin Marathon in 2018, and in October last year became the first man to break two-hours for the 42.2km distance in an unofficial challenge run in Vienna.

Known as the Ineos159 Challenge, Kipchoge with a series of different pacemakers clocked 1:59:40 to become the first person to break two hours for the marathon distance.

This weekend, Kipchoge will be taking part in a virtual 42km relay event called “M A R A T H O N”.

Ethiopia’s Kenenisa Bekele, Uganda’s Joshua Cheptegei and Kenyan Geoffrey Kamworor will also be participating.

That high-powered quartet will take part in a the team event on Saturday and Sunday which invites runners from around the world to join teams of four to complete a full marathon together, alone.

(06/06/2020) Views: 255 ⚡AMP
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Virgin London Marathon

Virgin London Marathon

The London Marathon was first run on March 29, 1981 and has been held in the spring of every year since 2010. It is sponsored by Virgin Money and was founded by the former Olympic champion and journalist Chris Brasher and Welsh athlete John Disley. It is organized by Hugh Brasher (son of Chris) as Race Director and Nick Bitel...

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World marathon record holder, Kenya’s Eliud Kipchoge to race in Tottenham's virtual marathon

World marathon record holder, Kenya’s Eliud Kipchoge has welcomed the challenge by English Premier League side, Tottenham Hotspurs’ fans ahead of the virtual 42km run due Saturday and Sunday.

The race dubbed, MA RA TH ON and is free to enter, is a virtual team relay where runners can register either in teams of four or as an individual and be placed in another group of three.

During the relay, each runner will run 10.5km sometime between Saturday and Sunday at a location that suits them, to make up a collective marathon distance.

Cumulative Time.- Logged on a running app, your team’s cumulative time will be placed on a virtual leaderboard to show how you compare with some of the world’s best.

“A football club is a family, players and fans together. On the weekend we will all run as one, good luck to all fans of @SpursOfficial.  Great to have you guys on the start line! #RunAsOne,” Kipchoge tweeted.

Kipchoge is among Hotspurs fans who have been invited to race in the global virtual marathon relay that is organised by Maurten, the club’s official sport fuel supplier.

To add further incentive, each participating team has the chance to be one of 10 teams that will see a running superstar join their squad. These include Kipchoge, Berlin Marathon champion Kenenisa Bekele, World Cross Country and World 10,000m champion Joshua Cheptegei and World half marathon champion Geoffrey Kamworor.

“Every runner has their own pace, their own background and their own motives to why they run. I am very excited to join someone’s team,” said Kipchoge adding they are really looking forward to joining the relay in this wonderful initiative with his teammates.

Also involved is legendary former player and 1991 FA Cup winner David Howells, who was up for the challenge when asked to take part.

Spurs will be well represented across the event, with members of Supporters’ Clubs from across England, the Netherlands, South Africa, the United States and Canada all pounding the pavements and donning their club colors.

“Like football, running and mass participation events have come to a grinding halt over the last few months,” Howells, the popular former midfielder said. “This is a great initiative that still carries team spirit, sets a target and encourages exercise, which is so important for physical and mental health right now.”

Howells said he is looking forward to the challenge, pulling on that Spurs kit again and representing the club with other fans around the world.

(06/05/2020) Views: 167 ⚡AMP
by Ayumba Ayodi
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Kipchoge, Bekele to face off in virtual relay marathon

Marathon icons Eliud Kipchoge of Kenya and Ethiopia's Kenenisa Bekele will hold a virtual team relay marathon between June 6 and 7, which may act as a dry run to their unprecedented clash in London in October.

With the world closed down and international travel not allowed in many countries, the two greatest marathon runners will form part of the teams that will compete in the relay race together with Uganda's world 10,000m champion Joshua Cheptegei and New York marathon champion Geoffrey Kamworor.

All four runners are managed by Global Sports Communications, under the NN Running team, and are using the lockdown to offer fans and elite runners hope as they wait for the sports season to open starting in August.

"On June 6-7, we run as one in a worldwide virtual marathon relay. Assemble a team of four, or be assigned a team with three other runners from around the world. Run against, or even possibly with, superstars like Eliud, Kenenisa, Joshua and Geoffrey," said NN Running team on Friday.

The virtual relay marathon is open to all athletics across the world. Each individual runner will be required to run for 10.5km alone so the team completes a full marathon together. This allows participants to safely run solo in their own locations while running in a team via the virtual standings.

"My teammates and I are really looking forward to joining the relay in this wonderful initiative. Success comes with hard work," world marathon record holder Kipchoge said.

"It has been an unusual time whereby all runners had to readjust their plans after having prepared well towards their own goals for this past spring season," the Olympic champion continued.

Bekele and Kipchoge will clash in the rescheduled London marathon on October 4 with Kipchoge hinting at making an attempt to break the course record, which he set in winning the 2019 race in the English capital.

Kipchoge cemented his status last year as the greatest marathon runner of all time by clocking the third-fastest time in history and becoming the first man to achieve a quartet of victories at the London marathon.

He clocked 2:02:37, carving 28 seconds out of the London course record he set three years ago.

"I hope to win again. We all look forward to a positive future and I believe that this is a great first step in that direction. Marathon is a sport whereby elite athletes and fun runners are actually all racing in the same race. It's what makes our sport unique and I find the essence of this to be beautiful," said Kipchoge. Enditem

(05/30/2020) Views: 182 ⚡AMP
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Athletic superstars like Eliud Kipchoge and Kenenisa Bekele will take part in a worldwide virtual team relay marathon next month

Athletic superstars Eliud Kipchoge, Kenenisa Bekele, Joshua Cheptegei and Geoffrey Kamworor are to take part in a worldwide virtual team relay marathon next month.

The marathon, which will take place between 6 and 7 June, is open to all athletics fans worldwide.

An initiative of the NN Running team, MA RA TH ON is a virtual team relay marathon race where people around the world can form a team of four to cover the marathon distance.

Each individual runner covers 10.5k so the team completes a full marathon together, alone. This allows participants to safely run solo in their own locations while running in a team via the virtual standings.

“I can say that myself and my teammates are really looking forward to join the relay in this wonderful initiative," said Kipchoge, the world marathon record holder.

"It has been an unusual time whereby all runners had to readjust their plans after having prepared well towards their own goals for this past spring season.

"We all look forward to a positive future and I believe that this a great first step in that direction. Marathon is a sport whereby elite athletes and fun runners are actually all racing in the same race. It’s what makes our sport unique and I find the essence of this to be beautiful.“

(05/28/2020) Views: 274 ⚡AMP
by Sport Africa
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Jakob Ingebrigtsen breaks Norwegian 5km record in Stavanger at one of the first races in the world since March 8

Multiple European champion clocks 13:28, just ahead of brother Henrik, as road race action returns

Jakob Ingebrigtsen stormed to a Norwegian 5km record in Stavanger on Wednesday evening, clocking 13:28 as road race action returned to the streets of Norway and the screens of athletics fans across the world.

His brother Henrik was four seconds behind him and also inside the old record time of 13:37 which had been set by Sondre Nordstad Moen in Monaco in February 2019.

The race had been adapted to meet health and infection control rules because of the coronavirus pandemic and took place on a 2.5km loop course, with the five athletes in this particular wave starting in a grid format.

It was live streamed by Norwegian broadcasting company NRK, with fans around the world tuning in to watch.

On an overcast evening in the Norwegian city, Henrik was quickly to the fore, before the Ingebrigtsen brothers’ training partners Narve Gilje Nordås and Per Svela plus Zerei Kbrom Mezngi took turns at the front.

Jakob then came through and pushed the pace, holding his lead all the way to the finish line where he was welcomed by rows of spectators.

His first loop was timed at 7:00 before he sped up to complete the second half of the race in 6:28.

In that wave, Svela finished third in 13:40, while Mezngi was fourth in 13:44 and Nordås fifth in 13:45.

Running in another wave, Vienna Søyland Dahle clocked the quickest women’s time with 16:14.

“It was fun to finally get the start number on my chest again, but I had to wake the body up,” Jakob told NRK’s ​​Jann Post.

“Compared to the same time last year, I must say that I have taken a step in the right direction again.”

Henrik said: “The most important thing was not to go crazy compared to Jacob. I think I’m clearly fine. The body held and I feel I am where I should be in relation to Jacob.”

Ahead of the race, Gjert Ingebrigtsen, the father and coach of Jakob and Henrik (pictured below), had told NRK: “The most important thing for the boys is to have a good experience, to get started with the season.”

Neither Jakob, the double European champion in 2018, nor his older brother Henrik, the 2012 European 1500m winner, had ever previously competitively raced over the distance on the road but 19-year-old Jakob broke the Norwegian 10km record on his debut in October, clocking 27:54.

He was competing for the first time since winning his fourth under-20 title at the European Cross Country Championships in December, while for Henrik it was his first race since the 5000m final at the World Championships in Doha.

The course featured a few twists and turns, so fans were left wondering what else Jakob might be capable of over the distance on the road.

The fastest official 5km road time by a European athlete is Julien Wanders’ 13:29 from February 2019 but Jimmy Gressier has since clocked 13:18, with that time from February awaiting ratification. The world best is Joshua Cheptegei’s 12:51 from earlier this year. Those three performances were all achieved in Monaco.

Both Jakob and Henrik are set to race over 2000m at the Oslo ‘Impossible Games’ which is due to take place instead of the traditional Diamond League meeting in June.

(05/20/2020) Views: 207 ⚡AMP
by Athletics Weekly
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Rhonex Kipruto’s world records over 5km (13:18) and 10km (26:24), have been ratified

Kipruto’s world record marks came when winning at the 10k Valencia Ibercaja on 12 January. The world 10,000m bronze medalist from Kenya dominated the race, passing through 3km in 7:59 before dropping the last of his challengers.

Rhonex Kipruto reached the half-way point in 13:18, four seconds inside the ratified world record of 13:22 set by Kenya’s Robert Keter in Lille on 9 November 2019. Despite running on his own for the second half, Kipruto increased his pace and covered the final five kilometers in 13:06.

His winning mark of 26:24 took 14 seconds off the previous world 10km record of 26:38 set by Joshua Cheptegei in the same Spanish city on 1 December 2019.

“I’m over the moon,” said Kipruto, who is coached by Colm O’Connell. “When I clocked 26:46 in Prague in 2018, I set myself the target of breaking the world 10km record and today my dream came true.”

In Monaco on 16 February 2020, one month after Kipruto’s run in Valencia, Cheptegei clocked 12:51 over 5km, a mark that is pending ratification.

(05/14/2020) Views: 259 ⚡AMP
by World Athletics
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10k Valencia Ibercaja

10k Valencia Ibercaja

Around the corner we have one more edition of the 10K Valencia Ibercaja, organized one more year by the C. 10K VALENCIA Athletics premiering the running season in Valencia. It is a massive urban race with more than 3,000 registered annually of 10 kilometers, where the maximum duration of the test will be 1 hour 40 minutes (100 minutes). The...

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World Under-20 10,000m champion Rhonex Kipruto eager to lower his world record

Conoravirus lockdown has only made Rhonex Kipruto hungrier and he is now thinking of lowering his person best in 10 kilometers that happens to be the world record.

The World Under-20 men’s 10,000m champion believes that with good preparations his record can dip further.

Kipruto started the season in explosive fashion breaking the 10km world record at the Valencia Ibercaja road race. He clocked a blistering 26 minutes 23 second, lowering the previous world record of Joshua Cheptegei’s time of 26:38, by a massive 15 seconds.

In his great form he was all set to assault his own record before the coronavirus pandemic disrupted the athletics calendar.

“I was right on target in my training and was focused on getting a place in the Olympic Games and going for the gold medal.

“But that has to wait now up to next year,” said Kipruto who is also the world bronze medalist in 10,000m.

Nation Sport caught up with Kipruto at Kimamet village in Kamwosor, Elgeyo Marakwet County where he was busy planting trees with his younger brother, Africa Under-20 10,000m champion Bravin Kogei.

According to Kipruto, when the camps were closed, they decided to go home and train individually.

The two normally wake up early in the morning for their normal run that covers about 21km before settling down to some easy farm work.

This they said was also part of their efforts to stop soil erosion and landslides that usually affects the community in this rather hilly area.

“Our training programme didn’t change it’s only that we are doing it alone which proves hard because we are used to group training back in Iten.

He has taken missing his much anticipated runs in the Diamond League in his stride and looking ahead to other promises.

“The virus has stopped the entire world but I want to say that we will come out of this situation stronger. Don’t be surprised to see athletes running faster times next season,” hinted Kipruto.

He termed the world record as the perfect gift for his training mates who helped him during the December holidays pushing him to his limits during preparations.

“Before I competed in January, I was training with a group comprised of various high school students who were at the holiday camp and they really pushed me in my training which later earned me a world record when I competed in Valencia,” he said.

Asked about Cheptegei, Kipruto said that he respects the world 10,000m champion but insists he is beatable.

(05/04/2020) Views: 456 ⚡AMP
by Bernard Rotich
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NN Running Team releases a short documentary followed several training groups in Africa called The long run, an inside view

The NN Running Team has possibly the most stacked lineup of long distance runners in the world. With world, European and national record-holders, and names like Eliud Kipchoge and Kenenise Bekele, the team uniform can often be seen in the lead at the world’s biggest races. NN Running recently released a min-documentary called The long run, an inside view, which takes viewers into several training camps and focuses on the importance of the long run, which is an integral part of every marathon training plan.

It’s a brief look at what training is like for the world’s best marathoners, and it has great lessons for runners of all levels.

The NN Running Team doesn’t have one set training location, so the film looks at groups in Kenya, Ethiopia and Uganda. In the doc, Kipchoge and Bekele are interviewed in their home countries of Kenya and Ethiopia, respectively, along with Kenyan half-marathon world record-holder, Geoffrey Kamworor, and Joshua Cheptegei, the 5K and 10K world record-holder from Uganda.

Switzerland’s Julien Wanders, the European half-marathon record-holder, is also a member of the NN team, and shots of his training in Iten, Kenya, are included in the film. Selly Chepyego is the only woman from the team featured in the documentary. In 2019, Chepyego, who is from Kenya, came in third at the Berlin Marathon, and earlier this year she was fourth at the Tokyo Marathon.

When we see videos of elite athletes in training, a lot of the time they’re shots from hard workouts on the track. Sometimes there are clips from long runs, but that training session is never the focus. This mini-documentary shows just how important the long run is, especially for marathoners.

“[Marathon training] is basically 90 to 95 per cent mileage,” Victor Chumo says in the film. “If you don’t do it, the chances that you are going to perform [are] less likely. That’s where you find some athletes who are less prepared. When he reaches around 35 to 40K, that’s when he faces some kind of problems or challenges.”

Kipchoge says his group rarely talks during their long runs, because it is a time to “concentrate on yourself.” Just like any other session, the long run requires your focus and attention. Wanders emphasizes that the long run is not a race, and although it can be tempting to run fast and push your training partners, it’s absolutely necessary to hold back and save your speed for another day. They also mention that, rain or shine, the long run always gets done. This is one of the most important parts of marathon training, so you can’t skip it.

Even if you don’t run marathons, there are lessons to be learned from this film, but besides the lessons, it’s just a fun look into the lives (or at least one part of the lives) of some of the world’s best runners.

(04/27/2020) Views: 399 ⚡AMP
by Ben Snider-McGrath
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Ugandan Joshua Cheptegei is set to make his half-marathon debut at the upcoming world championships

Joshua Cheptegei of Uganda ran a world-record shattering 5K on Sunday in Monaco–a 12:51, the fastest 5K time run on the roads or track in the past year. He did this just a few months after a monster 2019 season, where he became both the cross-country and 10,000m world champion.

Next up for Chepetegi is a half-marathon debut at the upcoming world championships in Gdynia, Poland.

It’s not typical to run a distance debut at a world championship, but when you’re a former 10K and current 5K world record holder, you’re not a typical runner. Cheptegei told World Athletics that he would like to make history at the March 29 race and become the first person to win consecutive world titles in cross-country, the 10,000m and the half-marathon.

The runner also told World Athletics that his usual mileage is between 120 and 140K per week when he’s training for track events, but since he’s stepping up to the half, he’s increased it to roughly 160K. The most important session of the week is a 30 to 35K long run, over rolling hills, at 1,800 meters of elevation.

The world half-marathon championships always draw a strong contingent, but especially this year.  The new world ranking system gives points to runners based on their placing at national and international championships.

The half-marathon championship is an event where a strong finish could nearly guarantee a spot on the Olympic start line. Also, runners who typically float in between track and road events no longer have to chose as the World Indoor Championships, also scheduled for March, were postponed due to coronavirus.

Federations will finish announcing their world championship teams in the coming two weeks, but spectators can expect to see strong fields including South African national record-holder Stephen Mokoka (59:51).

(02/18/2020) Views: 510 ⚡AMP
by Madeleine Kelly
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World Half Marathon Championships

World Half Marathon Championships

The first one was first held in 1992. The collaboration with the world half marathon championships allows the Trinidad Alfonso Foundation to continue its strategy of supporting sports events that help to position València as the city of running. It has been the main contributor to the Valencia Marathon and Half Marathon for the past five years. The Spanish Federation...

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Cheptegei shattered the world 5km road record in Monaco

Joshua Cheptegei shattered the world record in the 5km, clocking 12:51 at the Monaco Run 5km in the Mediterranean Principality today (16).

Running alone from the start, the 23-year-old Ugandan smashed through the event's 13-minute barrier, clipping a massive 27 seconds from the previous record of 13:18 set by Kenya's Rhonex Kipruto en route to his 10km world record in Valencia on 12 January.

Quick from the outset, Cheptegei blitzed through the first kilometre in 2:31, the fastest split of the race. He followed up with 2:35, 2:36 and 2:35 kilometre splits before sealing his record with a closing 2:32 kilometre.

“Wow, this is a really great," said Cheptegei, the 2019 world 10,000m champion, who was making his 2020 racing debut.

"I had sub 13 minutes in my mind today so when my legs felt good during the race I decided to really go for it. To take this many seconds off the record makes me very happy and is a great first test for me in an important season.”

Jimmy Gressier of France was second in 13:18, to break the European record of 13:29 set by Julien Wanders in this race last year.

Nick Goolab of Great Britain was third in 13:27, two seconds clear of Morocco's Mohamed Amine El Bouajaji.

Cheptegei's command performance not only eclipsed Kipruto's pending world record and the most recently ratified record of 13:22, set by Robert Keter in Lille on 9 November, but also bettered the fastest time ever recorded for the distance, Sammy Kipketer's 13:00 clocking in Carlsbad, USA, in 2000, well before the 5km became an official world record event in November 2017.

Liv Westphal won the women's race in 15:31, a French national record.

(02/16/2020) Views: 442 ⚡AMP
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Herculis 5k

Herculis 5k

For the 2019 edition, Monaco Athletics Federation is associating the world’s best track meeting 2018 and the Monaco Run to launch the 5km Herculis! From the Port Hercule to the Quai Albert 1er and through the Boulevard Princesse Grace, give yourself a chance to run across the principality of Monaco and to participate in a fast, exclusive and official race. ...

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Ugandan Joshua Cheptegei goes for 5km world record in Monaco

The World Cross-country and 10,000 meter champion will be making an attempt at a third world record when he runs in the 5km Herculis race. The record stands at 13.22 minutes.

Joshua Cheptegei, who left for Monaco on Wednesday, will on Saturday be seeking a rare triple in the city state of Monaco.The World Cross-country and 10,000 meter champion will be making an attempt at a third world record when he runs in the 5km Herculis race.

The record stands at 13.22 minutes. Uganda Police coach Benjamin Njia is confident Cheptegei will set a new mark.“He is on form. That record should fall,” said Njia from Cheptegei’s training area of Kapchorwa.

Cheptegei first rose to world record form in 2018 when he shaved eight seconds off the 15km world record record at the NN ZevenHeuvenloop race in Holland.

Cheptegei goes into Saturday’s race just two months after breaking the 10km road race record in Valencia. He clocked 26 minutes 38 seconds.

Cheptegei's average pace was two minutes and 40 seconds per kilometer in Valencia, passing through 5km in 13 minutes 24 seconds."What a year it has been," he said. "I can't believe it." I knew that Valencia was going to be a really fast course, one of the fastest in the world.

So to get to achieve what we came here for is something really special."Saturday’s race will be his first competition of a season where he is ultimately eyeing Olympic gold at the Tokyo Games in August.

Cheptegei is the only Ugandan to set three world records. John Akii-Bua is the only other Ugandan world record holder. Akii-Bua shot into the headlines when he became the first man to run the 400m hurdles under 48 seconds.

He clocked 47.82 seconds to win gold at the 1972 Munich Olympics.

(02/15/2020) Views: 471 ⚡AMP
by James Bakama
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Herculis 5k

Herculis 5k

For the 2019 edition, Monaco Athletics Federation is associating the world’s best track meeting 2018 and the Monaco Run to launch the 5km Herculis! From the Port Hercule to the Quai Albert 1er and through the Boulevard Princesse Grace, give yourself a chance to run across the principality of Monaco and to participate in a fast, exclusive and official race. ...

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Sir Mo Farah says he can make history in Tokyo by winning 10,000m at the age of 37

Tuning into the 10,000 meters final at the World Championships was when the 36-year-old first realized he had unfinished business with the track, despite his four Olympic gold medals and six world titles.

“Watching Doha, I was nervous and agitated,” he recalled. “I felt like I was there. My heart was pounding and I was looking at that race thinking, ‘I know I could do it, I want to do it’, and the Olympics is just round the corner. I knew from that point that I’d love to go back and race that.

“As an athlete it’s important if you’re still hungry and you want it, you train for it, you push yourself to get it. If you’re not hungry, you don’t want it as much, then it’s impossible to get it. And right now I have a great hunger for the track.”

So adamant was Farah about the switch that his coach, Gary Lough, who is continuing to oversee his track ambitions, did not even attempt to talk him round. As Farah puts it: “Gary knew from that point that nothing else mattered.”

So accustomed was Farah to winning on the track that his stab at the marathon has been frustrating. There have been notable highs — winning in Chicago in 2018 and breaking the European record — but too often he has been found wanting to his East African rivals and admitted to struggling to rectify wrongs on the road, such are the rigors of the event.

“If a track race goes wrong, you know what went wrong, whether it’s your endurance or speed or whatever, you can work it out and then focus on it in training,” he said. “Then you race again in two weeks’ time and you do something about it. With the marathon, it’s sixth months. Take Chicago. I got injured beforehand, had a little niggle and the race was a disaster really. Having run so many track races in the past and with Tokyo around the corner, you go for what you knew best.”

It helps that the 10,000m has not moved on monstrously in his absence, Uganda’s Joshua Cheptegei winning the world title in a time just a second quicker than Farah’s track swansong of the same distance at the preceding championships in 2017.

“There’s no one out there that has you saying ‘Oh, my God’ but in the marathon it’s different,” he said with a nod not just to the distance’s dominant force in Eliud Kipchoge but his wider rivals. “My understanding is I can’t finish in the top three in Tokyo with 2:05.”

But Farah will be the oldest man in history to run in a 10,000m final at the Olympics, let alone have aspirations to win a fifth Olympic gold. But, for him, it is the only target in his eyes. “It’s gold or nothing,” he said. “No one’s ever done that — someone that old — and that’s history. Anything is possible if you put your mind to it and work hard. I’m confident, otherwise I wouldn’t enter, but I know I’ve a lot of work to do. I can’t sit here saying, ‘It’s January and all’s good’. It’s going to be really hard. People will be saying, ‘Mo’ll win it’ but it doesn’t work like that.”

(01/14/2020) Views: 658 ⚡AMP
by Matt Majendie
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Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games

Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games

Fifty-six years after having organized the Olympic Games, the Japanese capital will be hosting a Summer edition for the second time, originally scheduled from July 24 to August 9, 2020, the games were postponed due to coronavirus outbreak, the postponed Tokyo Olympics will be held from July 23 to August 8 in 2021, according to the International Olympic Committee decision....

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Switzerland’s Julien Wanders smashed his European 10km record again at the 10K Valencia Ibercaja on Sunday

Behind Rhonex Kipruto’s magnificent world record of 26:24 which shaved 14 seconds off the mark set only last month on a different course in Valencia, Wanders continued his wholesale revision of the European record books by finishing third in 27:13.

Julien Wanders’ time improved his previous mark by 12 seconds which means he has ownership of the three fastest ever times in European distance running history: 27:13 in Valencia, 27:25 in Houilles and 27:32 in Cape Town. He also holds the European records at 5km (13:29) and the half marathon (59:13).

Wanders kept pace with Kipruto until just before the four kilometer mark when the Kenyan cut loose from the leading pack, covering the second half in an audacious 13:01 which brought him comfortably inside Joshua Cheptegei's previous record. 

Wanders was also operating on sub-27 minute pace in the early stages as he reached the five kilometer checkpoint in 13:29 to match his European record but he still maintained good pace in the second half. Wanders had the close company of Kenya’s Benard Kimeli in the latter stages with Kimeli narrowly prevailing in a sprint finish for the runner-up spot - 27:12 to 27:13.

"If you don't take risks, you don't get results," he told Swiss athletics website athle.ch after the race. "I am happy to have tried but it was too fast for me today." The limitless Wanders added that his goal in today's race was to break the 27 minute-barrier "but the next time, I will do it. It's certain." 

There were fast times en mass with the top eight finishers all breaking the 28 minute-barrier and 29 runners breaking the 29 minute-barrier. France’s world 3000m steeplechase finalist Djilali Bedrani was seventh in a 27:50 PB and world marathon fourth-placer Callum Hawkins placed 11th in 28:02, also a lifetime best.

Former European marathon champion Daniele Meucci set an Italian record of 28:08 in 13th and Juan Antonio Perez was the leading Spanish finisher in 15th in 28:09.

European 10,000m champion Lonah Chemtai Salpeter from Israel was the leading European finisher in the women’s race, finishing fifth in 31:09. For the first time in history, three women broke the 30 minute-barrier in the same race with Kenya’s Sheila Chepkirui winning in 29:46 from teammates Rosemary Wanjiru (29:50) and Norah Jeruto (29:51).

(01/13/2020) Views: 662 ⚡AMP
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10k Valencia Ibercaja

10k Valencia Ibercaja

Around the corner we have one more edition of the 10K Valencia Ibercaja, organized one more year by the C. 10K VALENCIA Athletics premiering the running season in Valencia. It is a massive urban race with more than 3,000 registered annually of 10 kilometers, where the maximum duration of the test will be 1 hour 40 minutes (100 minutes). The...

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Rhonex Kipruto breaks world 10km road record in Valencia

Rhonex Kipruto smashed the world record at the 10k Valencia Ibercaja on Sunday (12), clocking 26:24 to win the World Athletics Gold Label road race.

Sheila Chepkirui, meanwhile, ran 29:46 to win the women’s race. Her time was initially reported as 29:42, which would have been a one-second improvement on the world record, but her official time was later confirmed as 29:46, consolidating her position as the second fastest woman of all time.

Kipruto’s half-way split of 13:18 was also an improvement on the 5km world record. His second half of 13:06 was even faster, although would not be eligible for ratification.

The world 10,000m bronze medallist, still aged just 20, took 14 seconds off the yet-to-be-ratified mark set just six weeks ago by Joshua Cheptegei in the same city, albeit on a different course.

Held in the Spanish coastal city that played host to the World Half Marathon Championships in 2018, the standard of performances surpassed all expectations.

The men’s race kicked off at a brisk pace of 2:38 for the opening kilometre with a five-man group led by the main favourites: Kipruto and Benard Kimeli, Ethiopia’s Chala Ketema Regasa and Switzerland’s Julien Wanders perfectly paced by Shadrack Kosgei and Jacob Kiprop.

The 3km point was reached in 7:59 and only Kipruto, Kimeli and Wanders remained close to the pacemakers. By the fourth kilometre the pacemakers had already dropped out of the race and Kipruto was running solo as Kimeli could not live with his pace and was soon caught by Wanders.

Kipruto, the world 10,000m bronze medallist, reached the halfway point in 13:18, bettering the official 5km world record, with Kimeli and Wanders seven seconds in arrears, the Swiss breaking his own European record.

Despite running on his own for the entire second half, Kipruto increased his pace and clocked 2:37 for the sixth kilometre. After a slightly slower seventh kilometre of 2:40, the world U20 10,000m champion ramped up his speed again for the eighth kilometre, which he covered in 2:36. By then, having passed 8km in 20:11, it became clear that, barring disaster, Kipruto was going to improve Cheptegei’s world record.

Closing kilometres of 2:38 and 2:35 secured the world record for the 20-year-old Kenyan who covered the two halves in 13:18 and an impressive 13:06.

Well behind Kipruto, Kimeli and Wanders fought fiercely for the runner-up spot, the Kenyan finally prevailing, 27:12 to 27:13. Wanders’ time is a European record, improving his own mark by 12 seconds.

Only the legendary Ethiopian duo Kenenisa Bekele (26:17.53) and Haile Gebrselassie (26:22.75) have recorded faster times on the track, while Paul Tergat holds the Kenyan 10,000m record at 26:27:85.

“I’m over the moon,” said an ecstatic Kipruto, who is coached by Colm O’Connell. “When I clocked 26:46 in Prague in 2018, I set myself the target of breaking the world 10km record and today my dream came true. I’m very thankful to the organisers for relying on me to set the record and to the city and the people of Valencia for treating me so well and for their support throughout the race.”

Chepkirui leads Kenyan sub-30-minute sweep

Held at the same time as the men’s race, the women’s contest was a thrilling battle between the Kenyan trio of Rosemary Wanjiru, Norah Jeruto and Chepkirui. These three, alongside Israel’s Lonah Salpeter, travelled at a steady 2:58/2:59-per-kilometre pace to reach halfway in 14:51, perfectly on schedule to challenge Joyciline Jepkosgei’s world record of 29:43.

Shortly afterwards Salpeter lost ground and the race became a three-woman Kenyan battle with the added interest of a world record threat. It was inside the final kilometre that Chepkirui proved to be the strongest and during the long home-straight it seemed as though the 29-year-old would join Kipruto as a world record-holder, but ultimately she had to be content with a lifetime best of 29:46.

Wanjiru, who finished fourth in the 10,000m at the recent World Championships, obliterated her career best to 29:51 while Jeruto also bettered 30 minutes for the first time with 29:51. Their performances move them to equal third on the world all-time 10km list.

(01/12/2020) Views: 1,059 ⚡AMP
by Emeterio Valiente for World Athletics
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15 Mind-Blowing Race Moments From 2019-From Kipchoge to Kosgei and all of the upsets, records, and victories in between, 2019 was a major year for running.

1-Kosgei Shocks Everyone in Chicago-On October 13, Brigid Kosgei made history when she won the Chicago Marathon in 2:14:04. The Kenyan ran almost perfectly even splits to achieve her goal in the Windy City, passing the halfway mark in 1:06:59 before clocking 1:07:05 for the second half.

2-Eliud Kipchoge Dips Under 2-Hour Marathon Barrier-In his second attempt at breaking the two-hour barrier in the marathon, Eliud Kipchogeof Kenya accomplished the feat with a stunning run of 1:59:40 on the streets of Vienna in October.

3-Joan Samuelson Crushes Her Goal 40 Years After Boston Victory-In 1979, Joan Benoit Samuelson set a national and course record when she won the Boston Marathon as a 21-year-old college student. Forty years after her historic victory, Samuelson, 61, set out to run within 40 minutes of her winning time at the 2019 Boston Marathon. On April 15, the 1984 Olympic champion wore a similar Bowdoin College singlet to honor her 1979 win and shattered her goal, crossing the finish line in 3:04. “To be here, 40 years later and being able to run, let alone being able to run a marathon, I feel blessed,” she said.

4-Jim Walmsley Obliterates His Own Western States Record-Ultrarunning star Jim Walmsley maintained his Western States winning streak when he obliterated his own course record in June. Navigating 100 miles from Squaw Valley to Auburn, California, Walmsley broke the tape in 14 hours and 9 minutes, which broke his own course record by more than 20 minutes

5-Donavan Brazier Breaks 34-Year-Old American Record-Donavan Brazier had the race of his life when he broke one of the oldest American records on his way to winning gold in the 800 meters at the IAAF World Championshipsin Doha, Qatar. With 250-meters to go, Brazier ran away from the field to secure the first 800-meter world championship gold medal for the United States in a time of 1:42.34. 

6-Dalilah Muhammad Sets World Record Twice-Dalilah Muhammad made history twice this season when she broke the 400-meter hurdles world record and lowered it once again on her way to winning the world championships.

7-Sifan Hassan Wins Unprecedented Double at Worlds-At the IAAF World Championships in Doha, Sifan Hassan won two gold medals that no man or woman has achieved in the history of the world championships or Olympic Games. The Dutch runner, 26, kicked off the competition by winning the 10,000-meter final in a national record time of 30:17:33. 

8-Maggie Guterl Becomes First Woman to Win Backyard Ultra-For 60 hours straight, Maggie Guterl ran the same 4.2-mile trail loop to become the last runner standing in the Big’s Backyard Ultra race. The Durango, Colorado, native ran 250 miles on her way to becoming the first woman to win the brutal race that rewards the person who can run for the longest amount of time.

9-Geoffrey Kamworor Breaks Half Marathon World Record-Holding a 4:25-mile pace, Geoffrey Kamworor of Kenya shattered the world record at the Copenhagen Half Marathon in September, running 58:01. The performance, which was 17 seconds faster than the previous record, took place in the same city where the 26-year-old won his first of three half marathon world championship titles in 2014.

10-Joyciline Jepkosgei Debuts in NYC Marathon, Beats Mary Keitany-In her first marathon, Joyciline Jepkosgei of Kenya secured a title in a major upset. The half marathon world record-holder raced like a veteran in the New York City Marathonto beat four-time champion Mary Keitany in a winning time of 2:22:38, only seven seconds shy of the course record.

11-Kenenisa Bekele Wins Berlin Marathon 2 Seconds Shy of World Record-One year after Eliud Kipchoge set a world record that many believed would be untouchable for at least a few years, Kenenisa Bekele nearly surpassed it at the Berlin Marathon. The 37-year-old Ethiopian won the race in 2:01:41, just two seconds shy of Kipchoge’s record. 

12-Freshman Sha’Carri Richardson Shatters 100-meter Collegiate Record-In her first ever NCAA Outdoor Championship, Sha’Carri Richardson made history. In the 100-meter final, the LSU freshman sprinted to victory in a collegiate record of 10.75.

13-Drew Hunter, Athing Mu, and Colleen Quigley Win First Pro Titles-The USATF Indoor Championships brought out exciting breakthroughs for three young athletes. In the men’s 2-mile, 21-year-old Drew Hunter won the crown out of the “slower” heat by running a world-best time of 8:25.29. The women’s 600 meters was won by 16-year-old Athing Mu who defeated world silver medalist Raevyn Rogers in an American record time of 1:23.57.

14-BYU Snaps NAU’s Winning Streak at the NCAA Cross Country Championships-The Brigham Young team had a banner day at the NCAA Cross Country Championshipsin November. Battling muddy conditions, the BYU Cougars secured the team victory over three-time defending champions Northern Arizona in the men’s race. With a team total of 109 points, BYU beat NAU by 54 points to win the program’s first NCAA cross-country championship in history.

15-Joshua Cheptegei Sets 10K World Record After Winning Two World Titles-Joshua Cheptegei of Uganda capped off a banner year when he set a world record in the 10K on December 1, running 26:38 to win the 10K Valencia Trinidad Alfonso in Valencia, Spain. Earlier this year, he won the world cross-country championships and the world championship 10,000 meters in Doha, Qatar.

 

(12/15/2019) Views: 453 ⚡AMP
by Runner’s World
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Irish Marathon runner Paul Pollock run his personal best at the Valencia Marathon, 2:10:25 securing the automatic qualifying time for next year’s Tokyo Olympic marathon

It was an improvement of over five minutes on Pollock’s previous best and also moves the Belfast runner to number two on the Irish all-time list behind John Treacy’s 2:09.15 set 31 years ago in Boston, and moving Mark Carroll into third with his 2:10.52 run in New York in 2002. Pollock finished in 20th position in Valencia.

The 33-year-old also qualified for the Rio Olympic marathon in 2015, and has been one of Ireland’s top performers on the road in recent years, his previous best being 2:15.30. A qualified doctor, he has also endured his share of injuries in recent years and as recently as September was out with a broken metatarsal.

Pollock also becomes the first Irish men’s qualifier in the marathon for Tokyo; Fionnuala McCormack becoming the first Irish woman to qualify in Chicago in October. Fellow Belfast runner Stephen Scullion is also eyeing up the Tokyo standard of 2:11.30, eyeing up the Houston marathon next month.

Interestingly Pollock was also wearing the Nike Zoom Vaporfly Next Percent, the running shoes that have courted some controversy for the series of faster marathon times this year.

Also running in Valencia over the 10km, Joshua Cheptegei smashed the world record in that distance, clocking 26.38. The Ugandan clipped six seconds from the previous record of 26.44 set by Kenya’s Patrick Komon in 2010 to complete a sensational 2019 hat-trick that included world titles in cross-country and 10,000m on the track.

Running on his own over the entire second half, a determined Cheptegei reached 6km in 16.02 and 7km in 18.42. Cheptegei forged on, reaching 8km in 21.37, when it became clear that the world record was within reach.

With 23.59 on the clock at the 9km point, Cheptegei needed to cover the final kilometer in 2.45, a close well within his capabilities.

“World cross champion in Denmark, 10,000m world champion in Doha and now the world record here in Valencia. What a year it has been,” the 23-year-old said. “I can’t believe it. I knew that Valencia was going to be a really fast course, one of the fastest in the world. So to get to achieve what we came here for is something really special.”

(12/02/2019) Views: 1,237 ⚡AMP
by lan O'Riordan
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Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games

Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games

Fifty-six years after having organized the Olympic Games, the Japanese capital will be hosting a Summer edition for the second time, originally scheduled from July 24 to August 9, 2020, the games were postponed due to coronavirus outbreak, the postponed Tokyo Olympics will be held from July 23 to August 8 in 2021, according to the International Olympic Committee decision....

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Uganda’s Joshua Cheptegei breaks World 10K record in Valencia

Joshua Cheptegei smashed the world record in the 10km, clocking 26:38 at the 10K Valencia Trinidad Alfonso, a World Athletics Silver Label road race, on Sunday (1).

The Ugandan star clipped six seconds from the previous record of 26:44 set by Kenya's Leonard Patrick Komon in 2010 to complete a sensational 2019 hat-trick that included world titles in cross country and 10,000m on the track.

Pacesetter Roy Hoornweg covered the opening kilometre in 2:42 before Cheptegei moved to the front briefly demanding a quicker pace, a demand that was met - by the second kilometre the clock read 5:42 for a 2:40-kilometre split. Once Hoorweg dropped out, Stephen Kissa and Abdallah Mande took command with Cheptegei in tow, with the trio covering three kilometres in 7:57, well inside the word record schedule.

Following a 2:41 split for the fourth kilometre, Cheptegei overtook the pacemakers before the halfway point, reaching 5km in 13:23, one second shy of the world record for that distance.Running on his own over the entire second half, a determined Cheptegei reached 6km in 16:02 and 7km in 18:42. Cheptegei forged on, reaching 8km in 21:37, when it became clear that the world record was within reach.

With 23:59 on the clock at the 9km point, Cheptegei needed to cover the final kilometre in 2:45, a close well within his capabilities.

“World cross champion in Denmark, 10,000m world champion in Doha and now the world record here in Valencia. What a year it has been," the 23-year-old said. "I can’t believe it! I knew that Valencia was going to be a really fast course, one of the fastest in the world. So to get to achieve what we came here for is something really special."

(12/01/2019) Views: 664 ⚡AMP
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10k Valencia Trinidad Alfonso

10k Valencia Trinidad Alfonso

On the same day of the marathon, this parallel event of 10 kilometers is celebrated in the city of Valencia, Spain. A distance within reach of all runners. Ideal for the popular runner and for friends or companions who come to Valencia and do not resist the temptation to run. Participation is limited to 8,500 runners. ...

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