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Oromo athlete Netsanet Gudeta breaks the women half marathon World Record with new WR 1:06:11 in Valencia, Spain March 24, 2018

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Netsanet Gudeta Kebede clocking 1:06:11 world record in Valencia (Jean Pierre Durand)

The women-only half marathon world record * was improved to 1:06:11 at the IAAF/Trinidad Alfonso World Half Marathon Championships Valencia 2018 but it wasn’t acquired by race favourite Joyciline Jepkosgei, who owns the mixed-race standard of 1:04:51, but by slightly surprising Ethiopia’s Netsanet Gudeta.Gudeta – with the name Kebede on her bib in reference to her extended family name but who appears in vast majority of race results and is better known by solely her father’s name – made a decisive bid for glory in the 14th kilometre to shake off both Jepkosgei and her little-known Kenyan compatriot Pauline Kamulu and was never headed over the final third of the race.

She reduced Lornah Kiplagat’s world and championship record, which had stood since the 2007 edition, by 14 seconds – as well as slicing 1:15 off her own personal best set in Delhi last November – and fittingly, after being slumped for a time beside the barriers beyond the finish line while she regained her composure, was helped to her feet and congratulated by the Dutch woman whose records she had just superseded.

Records looked likely from the moment the gun went.

A 13-strong group consisting of the three Kenyan runners on the final entry list and all five of the Ethiopia and Bahrain women’s squads flew through the first 3km in 9:20.

Admittedly, the opening kilometres saw the runners have gusting winds on their back, but the predicted finishing time was well inside 66 minutes and stayed that way for the next two kilometres despite a slight easing off of the pace before 5km was passed in 15:39.

The Kenyan trio of Ruth Chepngetich, Jepkosgei and Kamulu were forcing the pace with the other 10 women wisely using them as wind breaks.

Working together, but now running into the wind, between seven and eight kilometres Jepkosgei, and Kamulu started to surge in familiar fashion to the way that Kenyan runners have so often done at major championship races in the past and only Gudeta, fellow Ethiopian Meseret Belete and Bahrain’s Asian record holder Eunice Chumba could stay with them.

Passing 10km in 31:38, with Belete clearly starting to struggle and an 11-second gap back to a third Ethiopian Zeineba Yimer, the definite impression that the medallists were going to come from the leading quartet was getting stronger with every stride, and so it proved.

Even though the leaders had drifted outside the pace to beat Kiplagat’s marks, who had passed 10km in 31:10 in the Italian city of Udine 11 years ago, they were still operating at a high tempo.

Over the next couple of kilometres, Gudeta showed more regularly at the front to demonstrate to everyone that she was still fresh and then she made her move. Having passed 13 kilometres and crossing to the south side of the famed Turia Gardens, she went through the gears to test the mettle of her remaining rivals.

Initially, it was the unheralded Kamulu who gave chase but she could not stay with Gudeta for long.

Passing 15km in 47:30, with Kamulu four seconds in arrears and Jepkosgei a further four seconds down the road, Gudeta looked supremely relaxed as some gentle rain started to fall and she consistently and constantly turned the screw.

Gudeta passed 18km in an unofficial 56:45 to bring the world and championship record back into focus, and then speeded up to go through 20km in 1:02:53, now a full 40 seconds clear of Kamulu.

As she turned the corner into the long finishing straight alongside the august Valencia landmark of the Museu de les Ciències Príncipe Felipe, the clock had not yet reached 66 minutes and so Gudeta dug deep and started to sprint over the final 150 metres before going into new territory and taking the US$50,000 world record bonus.

“The race went according to plan, I was only thinking about the gold medal,” reflected Gudeta, sixth and fourth at the last two IAAF World half Marathon Championships, speaking through a translator.

Gudeta later confirmed that it was part of her pre-race plans to let the Kenyans take the pace through the first half of the race and that her training had been geared towards sustaining a fast pace all the way to the finish.

Behind the winner, there was drama as Jepkosgei found her second wind over the last three kilometres.

At almost exactly the 20km checkpoint, she got up on the shoulder of Kamulu before edging past her compatriot to take second place in 1:06:54 with Kamulu two seconds back in a personal best of 1:06:56.

Jepkosgei revealed that after her mixed-race world record in Valencia last October she had suffered from malaria that had affected her training, although she had come back to finish sixth in the RAK half Marathon last month. “I have been recovering slowly but I still came here for a medal,” she commented.

Chumba just missed out on being Bahrain’s first ever medallist at the IAAF World Half Marathon Championships when she finished fourth in 1:07:17 but did get to climb the podium and see the Bahrain flag fly for the first time at a medal ceremony when the Asian country took the team bronze medals behind Ethiopia and Kenya.


Oromo athlete Buze Diriba wins the 2018  New York City half marathon


Oromia: Athletic Nation Report: The amazing victories of Oromo Athletes Almaz Ayana and Tirunesh Dibaba in IAAF World Championships, 10,000m in London 2017. Tamirat Tola (Silver) in Marathon August 13, 2017

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The amazing victories of Oromo Athletes Almaz Ayana (Gold) and Tirunesh Dibaba (Silver) in IAAF World Championships, 10,000m race in London 2017.



Olympic champion Ayana destroys field to win 10,000 metres 

(Reuters, London) The Olympic champion began pulling away from the field after 10 laps, sweeping past back markers who were made to look sluggish in comparison.

She finished in 30:16.32 seconds, well outside the world record she set when she won in Rio last year but still enough to win by an astonishing 46.37 seconds, by far the biggest margin in championship history.

Ayana’s compatriot Tirunesh Dibaba, the former world and Olympic champion, added to her impressive collection of medals when he took the silver with Kenya’s Agnes Tirop in third.





(IAAF,  5 August 2017, London) While the Olympic final last year went out at close to world record pace from the get-go, the first three kilometres were covered in a cumbersome nick but with the clock showing a fraction inside ten minutes after the first three kilometres, Ayana cut loose and put on a display second only to her world record performance at the Olympics last year.

Only Turkey’s Yasemin Can tried to follow Ayana’s break but the reigning European champion – finding this field a step up in calibre to the continent fields she has dominated in recent seasons – soon paid for trying to cling onto the leader’s coat-tails, eventually fading back to 11th in 31:35.48 and getting lapped in the process.

Ayana covered the tenth and eleventh laps in 67.41 and 67.89 respectively before reaching halfway in 15:51.38 with a seven second advantage on Can, who was dropping back into the chasing pack which included the Kenyan triumvirate headed by Alice Aprot and Tirunesh Dibaba.

Arguably the greatest track runner in history with eight major titles to her name across a decade-long timespan from 2003, Dibaba admitted she wasn’t in shape on this occasion to match Ayana after an abbreviated build-up following a spring road racing season culminating with an Ethiopian record of 2:17:56 in the London Marathon.

“If I had followed her [Ayana], I wouldn’t have won a medal. I know my capacity these days because my training for this race was very short,” said Dibaba, who only began her build-up to this race as recently as two months’ ago.

But even Dibaba at her most imperious might have struggled to stick with Ayana, who was consistently lapping at under 70-second pace per lap. Her fifth kilometre – covered in 2:49.18 – even represented world record pace for the 5000m, let alone for the 10,000m.

Aside from Dibaba and Aprot, the second group included the last two world cross country champions – Irene Cheptai and Agnes Tirop – but for all of their titles and credentials, they were losing nearly 10 seconds with each kilometre. Ayana was within sight at halfway but by the eight kilometre mark (24:30.03), the long-time leader – who covered that section in 8:38.65 – led by 36.70, representing more than half-a-lap in terms of distance on the track.

Having made a herculean mid-race effort, Ayana’s lap times were beginning to drift outside 70-second pace over the last five laps – putting Berhane Adere’s championship record of 30:04.18 just out of view – but Ayana still crossed the finish-line in 30:16.32, the second fastest winning time in championship history.

A whole gamut of stats and numbers emerged once Ayana’s scintillating performance was dissected but the most noteworthy one was her second half split of 14:24.95 – a time which would have ranked ninth in its own right on the world all-time lists.

In the race for the minor medals, Cheptai was the first of the contingent to crack – followed by Aprot – and while Dibaba might lack the pace which has taken her to so many titles over the years, Dibaba moved past Tirop at the bell and held her off on the last lap, 31:02.69 to Tirop’s 31:03.50.

After finishing fourth at the Olympics last year, Aprot just missed out on the medals again in 31:11.86 with Cheptai fading to seventh in 31:21.11, passed by the Netherlands’ Susan Krumins (31:20.24) and 2015 bronze medallist Emily Infeld (31:20.45) in the run-in to the finish.

Ayana answered any questions about her form in the most decisive manner possible but despite her barnstorming display in tonight’s 10,000m, it might be presumptuous to say that she is a shoo-in for the 5000m title.

One year ago, Ayana was a dead-cert to follow up her Olympic 10,000m title with a second gold medal but a stomach ailment left her weakened for her third race of the championships and she had to settle for bronze behind Kenyans Vivian Cheruiyot and Hellen Obiri, the latter hungry to claim her first global outdoor title.


Oromo athlete Tamirat Tola (silver medalist) finish 2nd to Geoffrey Kirui of Kenya.

Tola, the Olympic 10,000m bronze medallist and fastest in the field thanks to the 2:04:11 he recorded in winning this year’s Dubai Marathon, required medical treatment after struggling home in 2:09:49, just two seconds ahead of Tanzania’s Alphonce Simbu, who clocked 2:09:41.

Congratulations to All!!! The final of #iaafworldchampionships2017 in women’s 5000M: Helen Obiri of Kenya (Gold) Oromo athletes Alamaz Ayana (Silver), Sifan Hassan for  Netherlands (Bronze) & Senbere Teferi Sora is 4th.


Muktar Idris wins Gold in men’s 5000m and Yomifkejelcha is 4th.

The medals tally Oromo athletes (athletes of Oromia origin) win at IAAF World Championships London 2017 makes Oromia the top 6th country in the world, on the par with the host country, UK and next to China. Wthout Oromia Ethiopia just does not exist. in the spirit of Ayyaanaa and Ethics of Gadaa Oromia can stand and go alone.

The medals tally athletes of Oromia win in IAAF World Championships 2017 makes Oromia the 6th top countries in the world.

Oromia: Athletic Nation Report: Oromo athlete Genzebe Dibaba Breaks world record in 2000m in Sabadell, Spain February 9, 2017

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As well as the outdoor 1500m world record, Dibaba now owns the fastest ever recorded times indoors for the 1500m, mile, 2000m, 3000m, two miles and 5000m.

World 1500m champion Oromo athlete  Genzebe Dibaba added to her growing list of record-breaking achievements by breaking the world 2000m record* at the Miting Internacional de Catalunya in the Spanish city of Sabadell on Tuesday, 7 February 2017.

The three-time world indoor champion overtook the pacemaker just before the half-way mark, which was reached in 2:42.65, and continued to extend her lead over her younger sister Anna and Morocco’s Siham Hilali.

She went on to stop the clock at 5:23.75, taking almost seven seconds off the world indoor best set by Gabriela Szabo in 1998. Although the 2000m isn’t an official world record event indoors, Dibaba’s performance – pending ratification – can be classed as an outright world record as it is faster than Sonia O’Sullivan’s outdoor mark of 5:25.36.

As well as the outdoor 1500m world record, Dibaba now owns the fastest ever recorded times indoors for the 1500m, mile, 2000m, 3000m, two miles and 5000m.

Elsewhere in Sabadell, European champion Adam Kszczot won the 800m in 1:46.31 with Spanish record-holder Kevin Lopez taking second place in 1:46.58.

European 5000m silver medallist Adel Mechaal was a convincing winner of the 3000m, clocking 7:48.39 to finish more than two seconds ahead of Italy’s Marouan Razine.