World 1,500m record on the horizon for Timothy Cheruiyot
Keith McGhie in Doha
Timothy Cheruiyot claimed the world 1,500m record is on the horizon after a sensational solo run to gold which ensured that Kenya finished a clear second in the medals table when the 2019 IAAF World Athletics Championships came to a close in Doha on Sunday.
The 23-year-old, who claimed silver behind his currently injured training partner Elijah Manangoi in London two years ago, led from gun to tape through a devastating display of strength, speed and confidence which blew away the opposition.
Tracked by compatriot Ronald Kwemoi, Rongai Athletics Club member Cheruiyot forged a 15-metre advantage by the bell which even in-form Algerian Taoufik Makhloufi, the silver medallist, and bronze winner Marcin Lewandowski, of Poland couldn’t breach.
The Kenyan came home in a time of 3 minutes 29.26 seconds, while Kwemoi faded to seventh but still clocked a season’s best 3:32.72.
“My target this year was to become world champion and it’s been a long journey since my silver in 2017,” explained Cheruiyot.
“I spoke with my coach (Bernard Ouma) and planned to run under 3:30 as I was sure that no-one would follow at that pace. The world record may come in time as I’m confident that I can run under 3:26,” he added.
In the early hours of Sunday morning, Amos Kipruto had already enhanced Kenya’s medal tally with bronze in the men’s marathon, conquering the course in less arduous hot and humid conditions than the women had faced a week beforehand, although still 16 of the 73 starters failed to reach the finish.