Jepchirchir win continues Kenya’s dominance

Monday, September 7th, 2020 00:00 |
Peres Jepchirchir .

On Saturday, Kenya’s Peres Jepchirchir smashed the women-only half marathon world record in  Prague.

The 26-year-old clocked 1:05:34 in the 21.1km course and ran in 16.5 laps at Letna Park to beat Ethiopia’s Netsanet Gudeta’s previous best mark of 1:06:11 set at the 2018 World Half Marathon Championships.

Jepchirchir becomes the latest Kenya to hold a world record in athletics. Below are some recent Kenyan world beaters:

Brigid Kosgei (Chicago 2019)

In October 2019, Kosgei stunned the world when she lowered a 16-year record held by Britain’s Paula Radcliffe by an astonishing 81 seconds.

Kosgei clocked 2:14:04 in the Chicago Marathon  to assert herself as one of the women marathoners to watch, having also won the 2019 London Marathon in April. The feat saw her nominated for the IAAF Women’s Athlete of The Year Award in 2019.

Geoffrey Kamworor (Copenhagen 2019)

Before Kipchoge flew to Austria, he had received enough motivation from his NN Running teammate Geoffrey Kamworor who smashed compatriot Abraham Kiptum’s world half marathon record in Copenhagen, Denmark, on September 15.

Kamworor shaved 17 seconds off Kiptum’s mark set in Valencia last year when he ran 58:01 in the Danish capital.

It was just another demonstration of the capabilities of The Man for All Surfaces who has titles in marathons, full marathons, cross country and track. 

Eliud Kipchoge (Berlin 2018)

Eliud Kipchoge went to Vienna for the INEOS 1:59 Challenge knowing he had nothing to lose.

This is because while his time will not be ratified by the World Athletics, he is indeed the holder of the legitimate world record.

Mr Philosophical as they call him became the first man ever to run under 2:02 in a marathon when he set a new world record of 2:01:39 in the 2018 Berlin Marathon.

His feat shaved 78 seconds off compatriot Dennis Kimetto’s 2:02:57 mark set on the same course in 2014.

Beatrice Chepkoech (Monaco 2018) 

World 3,000m steeplechase champion Beatrice Chepkoech produced the crowning performance of the 10th IAAF Diamond League meeting of the 2018 season as she took more than eight seconds off the women’s world record in 8:44.32.

She  obliterated the mark of 8:52.78 set by Kenyan-born Bahraini Ruth Jebet in winning at the IAAF Diamond League meeting in Paris in 2016, and the 8:58.78 set in Eugene 2017 by her compatriot Celliphine Chespol.

David Rudisha (London 2012)

King David may not have been seen on track for the last two years or so but his crown is still intact.

Rudisha broke his own world record to claim an Olympic gold medal in the 800m at the London Olympics in 2012. Rudisha, then 23, stormed through the first lap in 49.28 and powered to a stunning victory in 1:40.91, taking 0.10 off his previous record as all eight finalists set record times.

Rudisha is the first and only person to ever run under 1:41 over the distance. 

Mary Keitany (London 2017) 

Before April 2017, Britain’s Paul Radcliffe was the proud holder of two world records, the outright mark of 2:15:25 and the women’s-only of 2:17:42. She no longer has both.

Before Brigid Kosgei lowered the  2:15:25 in Chicago in 2019, she had watched another Kenyan Mary Keitany obliterate the women’s-only mark by taking 41 seconds off it after running 2:17:01.

Daniel Komen (Rieti 1996)

The  men’s 3,000m steeplechase and 3,000m flat word records have proved difficult to break.

While the steeplechase record of 7:53.63  set in 2004 is held by Kenyan-born Qatari Saif Saaeed Shaheen formerly known as Stephen Cherono, the 3,000m mark is owned by Kenya’s Daniel Komen who set a new time of 7:20.67 in Rieti, Italy in September 1996.  

Eliud Kipchoge (Vienna 2019)

Brigid Kosgei’s record-breaking feat came two days after  Eliud Kipchoge made history in Vienna, Austria, by becoming the first man to run a marathon under two hours.

Dubbed the INEOS 1:59 Challenge, Kipchoge lived up to his no-human-is-limited mantra when he clocked 1:59.40 in Vienna on October 12, achieving what was considered impossible over the distance.

His feat is, however, not recognised as a world record by the World Athletics but he has earned plaudits all over the world for making the impossible possible. 

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