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Indoor World record in Boston, Latvian victory at Osaka-Marathon, Gebrselassie and Bekele are back on track

2005-02-05

In the last few days long distance runners set a couple of highlights in the new season. Ethiopian Tirunesh Dibaba broke the world record at 5,000 m with 14:32,93 minutes at the Boston Indoor Meeting. She improved Berhane Adere’s former world record from last year by six seconds.

The indoor best time of Dibaba, who is just 19 years old, sounds promising regarding the upcoming outdoor season. Her sister Ejagayou, who is three years older, set the pace in the first half of the race.

The 5,000 m world record of 14:24,68 minutes, which was set last year from Turkey’s Elvan Abeylegesse, could be within reach for Tirunesh Dibaba who had reached third place in the Olympic 5,000 m final. 14 years ago, Uta Pippig broke the 5,000 m world record: The runner from Berlin clocked 15:13,72 minutes in 1991 in Stuttgart.

Berhane Adere almost would have lost another world record in Boston. 5,000 m Olympic Champion Meseret Defar (Ethiopia) won the 3,000 m run in 8:30,05 minutes – Adere had run 8:29,15 in Stuttgart three years ago.

Meanwhile 10,000 m Olympic Champion Kenenisa Bekele ran his first race after the tragic death of his fiancée. At the age of only 17 Alem Techale had collapsed and died during a training run in the beginning of January. Bekele now ran the 3,000 m in Boston in 7:41,42 minutes and became second behind Irishman Alistair Cragg, who set a season’s best of 7:39,89.

The other great Ethiopian runner, Haile Gebrselassie, came back as well. After an Achilles tendon operation he won a half marathon in Almeria (Spain) in 61:46 minutes. It was a new course record. And now Gebrselassie plans to run the high-class London Marathon on April 17th. Three years ago he had run his first serious marathon in London finishing third in a first-class time of 2:06:35. Meanwhile it was announced that Gebrselassie has signed a three year contract with the London marathon. His aim is to break the world record of Paul Tergat (Kenya), who had triumphed at the real,- BERLIN-MARATHON 2003 in 2:04:55.

Jelena Prokopcuka (Latvia) surprisingly triumphed at the traditional Osaka Marathon in 2:22:56. Just three months before she had been fifth in New York with 2:26:51. The 28 year-old ran a personal best in the women’s elite race. She had run a time of 2:24:01 back in 2003. It was Hiromi Ominami, who was second at the real,- BERLIN-MARATHON 2004, who seized the initiative at first and was leading for a long time. 10 k before the finish Jelena Prokopcuka overtook the Japanese who fell back into sixth place (2:28:07). Japanese Mari Ozaki (2:23:59), Harumi Hiroyama (2:25:56) and Miki Oyama (2:26:55) as well as the Romanian Lidia Simon (2:27:01) finished behind Jelena Prokopcuka.


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