Records Are Falling, And Fast!
Within 12 hours between Friday night and Saturday morning 3 athletics world records were broken. Let’s get into it.
Prague Restarts With a World Record in 21.1km
Peres Jepchirchir breaking the tape for a world record. Photo Credit: RunCzech
Prague Half on Sunday was like Kenyan trials with Peres Jepchirchir and Kibiwott Kandie coming out on top of all Kenyan podiums at the 2020 Prague 21.1km race.
For Peres Jepchirchir, the Prague half weekend was about the hope to run well despite training alone. And she was in very good shape. Not satisfied with the pace, she took on the lead in 7km and with a brilliant solo run from 7km, the former world half marathon champion and former world record holder won Prague 21.1km in 1:05:34, the new women’s only world record - that’s a race run without male pacers. You can watch Jepchirchir’s run here.
One of the fun things about having female pacers, is that they’re actually in the contest. Brenda Jepleting was on pacing duties, but the pack she was pacing couldn’t keep up with her, and she went on to finish second in 1:07:07.
In the men’s race, Kibiwott Kandie did a solo run in the second half of the men’s race and won it in a personal best time of 58:38, the fifth fastest time in the half marathon ever. Maybe all this solo training is working out and getting the fastest runners to break away and run solo?
Kibiwott Kandie for the win. Photo Credit: RunCzech
Faaaast Brussels Diamond League
The other two records happened at the Diamond League meet in Brussels on Friday.
In the one hour run, both men’s and women’s records went down. The event is all about how far athletes can run around a track in 1 hour. Sifan Hassan of the Netherlands covered 18,930 meters in 60 mins while Mo Farah did 21,330m.
This was Mo’s first track event since 2017, and interesting to see that he’s on form and perhaps will be competitive at 10,000m in the 2021 Olympics.
Unfortunately Brussels didn’t end up well for marathon world record holder Brigid Kosgei, who was making her debut on the track. She was disqualified for stepping on the rail 7 minutes from the end of the 1 hour race. Brigid did give Sifan a good run, and finished 2nd place - under the old 1 hour record herself.
The other record we were hoping for was for Faith Kipyegon in the 1000m. She won the race, but didn’t set the record. She came within a few 100s of a second at Monaco Diamond league, and you can see the realisation when she looks at the clock in this video. But it wasn’t to be this time either as the Olympic champion crossed the line in 2:29.92, nearly a full second of the record of 2:28.98.
Faith Kipyegon on the Blessing of Motherhood
Off the track, Faith is being equally inspiring. In 2018 Faith Kipyegon took time off for her first born daughter. Faith wrote a deeply personal piece for Spikes Magazine about her experience with pregnancy and motherhood. From body changes, lost fitness, feeling tired all the time, gaining weight from 45km to 53kg. Coming back from it wasn’t easy, but as she says: a baby is a blessing.
We are in Ostrava Today, Tuesday 8th
Well, we’re there in spirit.
From Brussels to Ostrava, Faith Kipyegon is racing again this evening at the 59th edition of Ostrava Golden Spike. She’ll be running 1500m, her favorite distance and, not coincidentally, the distance at which she’s reigning Olympic Champ. The event which starts at 18.00 CET is part of the World Athletics Continental Tour Gold.
800m world bronze medalist Ferguson Rotich is on a winning spree.
Last Thursday, he ran a very tactical race to win the 800m at the Meeting Pro Athle Tour de Marseille (rewatch it all) in a new meeting record of 1:44.24. The time places him fourth on this year’s world list. Meeting de Marseille is a World Athletics Continental Tour Bronze event. This was a welcome result for Ferguson since he finished outside top 3 at Diamond League Monaco and Stockholm.
Then, on Sunday, he won again at the Skolimowska Memorial, a World Athletics Continental Tour Gold meeting in Silesia, Poland. Rotich passed Wesley Vasquez over the final 20 metres to win his third straight 800m contest in 1:45.30.
Building Biological Passports
A big part of the Athletics Integrity Unit (AIU) Road Running Integrity Programme is building biological passports for athletes - basically knowing what their blood looks like month to month in order to be able to detect any anomalies. This month AIU is starting up group testing for road runners at various locations across Kenya. This will allow top road runners in marathon and half marathon, among other long distance events to build passports to ensure they’re competing clean.
Former Barcelona Marathon champion, Philip Cheruiyot Kangogo has been banned for two years by the AIU. Kangongo tested positive of Prohibited Substance Higenamine. His ban is effective from 31 July 2019 and results from 28 April, 2019 have been disqualified.
Joshua Cheptegei Going after 10,000m World Record
Ugandan Joshua Cheptegei has announced his next target: the 15 year-old 10,000m world record. He will attempt it on 7 October at the NN Valencia World Record Day in Valencia, an event organized by his management team for one clear purpose (clue is in the name).
The 10,000m world record is held by Kenenisa Bekele, and until Cheptegei came along, many thought it was untouchable. But having broken Bekele’s 5000m record, Cheptegei is ready to return to Valencia, which is where he broke the 10k road record.
"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," said Cheptegei.
73 Year-Old Runner Goes From Cardiac Arrest to Virtual Great North Run
73-year-old John Gray has taken part in every Great North Run since 1981. While training for the race in May last year, John went into cardiac arrest while out running in his village. Paramedics said John died for 14 minutes as they tried to resuscitate him. From induced coma, five weeks in hospital to now setting his sights on Virtual Great North Run. Now this is such an inspirational story of resilience.
London Marathon's New Route
Organizers have released the revised route for the London Marathon. The race will take place on a short circuit around St. James’s Park. Athletes will run 19.6 laps, taking in The Mall, Horse Guards Parade, Birdcage Walk and the spur road running adjacent to the front of Buckingham Palace. The finish line will be in its traditional place on The Mall, with no spectator access to the course. It’ll be interesting to see how it feels on the day.
From Us At Enda
Over in our Instagram stories, we asked "if you could ask 1 question of a Kenyan running coach, what would it be?" The most common question was about long runs: just how long should they be?
So Ralph from the Enda team had a chat with Paralymic champion Henry Wanyoike and his coach Paul to get their take.
His top two takeaways were:
1) Long runs should be about twice as long as your regular easy runs
2) How long your long run will depend on what you’re training for. Train to endure what you’re training for by running your target distance.
Check out the full blog post for more.
From the Enda Community
maia4peace had a lovely couple of posts about getting a pair of Itens for her son. She says:
"My son has been running since he was 10years old. Took a break for a year with no incentive to resume Until....... Enda running shoes from Kenya arrived✨🥰Thank you Enda my son is back and ready to fly🙏🏿 #endarunning"
"He always looked forward to the opportunity to run in the same races with such graceful, elegant, powerful runners as the Kenyan athletes. Thank you Enda. These shoes are an inspiration!❤️🧡💚"
maia4peace, we’re proud to be part of your son’s return to running. Thank you for sharing your story.
For everyone else, if you want to share some of that joy, you can get your Itens and Lapatets right here on our site.