Chepkoech, Kandie's world records now ratified
Kibiwott Kandie competes in the 10km Senior men race during the AK/LOTTO National Cross Country Championship at the Ngong Race Course on February 13, 2021. [Stafford Ondego, Standard]

Gudaf Tsegay, Beatrice Chepkoech and Kibiwott Kandie will go into the Olympic season with recent world records to their names, after their respective marks over 1500m, 5km and the half-marathon were ratified this week.

Chepkoech’s world 5km record success came at the Monaco Run on February 14.

Racing on Valentine’s Day, the world 3000m steeplechase champion further demonstrated her passion for the sport by running 14:43 for 5km on the roads, improving on the previous women’s record in a mixed gender race of 14:48 set by her compatriot Caroline Kipkirui on September 8, 2018.

It was also one second faster than Sifan Hassan’s 14:44 record for a women-only race, which had previously been the fastest time ever produced over the distance since the 5km was introduced as a world record event in November 2017.

“I’m so happy because I didn’t expect it,” said Chepkoech, who broke the world 3000m steeplechase record with 8:44.32 also in Monaco in 2018.

“It was cold and there was a lot of wind, but I tried to follow my pacemaker and everything was perfect.”

Chepkoech, Kandie's world records now ratified
Kenya’s Beatrice Chepkoech competes in the women’s 1,500 metres at the Glasgow Indoor Grand Prix athletics competition at the Emirates Arena in Glasgow on February 25, 2018. [AFP PHOTO / ANDY BUCHANAN]

Two months earlier, Kandie had also made road running history by clocking 57:32 at the Valencia Trinidad Alfonso EDP Half Marathon.

Running in near-ideal conditions on December 6, Kenya’s Kandie gained his “revenge” after missing out on World Athletics Half Marathon Championships gold in Gdynia seven weeks before.

There he was beaten by Uganda’s Jacob Kiplimo but in Valencia Kandie turned the tables in superb style

He also shaved 29 seconds from the previous world half-marathon record of 58:01 which had been set by his compatriot Geoffrey Kamworor in Copenhagen on September 15, 2019.

In a race of incredible depth, the next three finishers – Kiplimo (57:37), Rhonex Kipruto (57:49) and Alexander Mutiso (57:59) – also dipped under the previous record.

Splits of 8:05 at 3km and 13:37 at 5km – 11 seconds inside world record pace – had suggested that a historic run was in the making.

The 10km point was reached in 27:25, while 15km was passed in 41:10.

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