Lamecha Girma breaks the world indoor 3000m record in Lievin (Photo © Baptiste Daniel)
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WA Ratifies World Record for Lamecha Girma

World records set this season by Lamecha Girma, Faith Kipyegon and Maria Perez have been ratified, the sports governing body World Athletics (WA), announced today.

Ethiopia’s Lamecha set the record on June 9 at the Wanda Diamond League event in Paris.

On one of the greatest nights in athletics,
Lemecha set his sights on the men’s world 3000m steeplechase record of 7:53.63 set by Qatar’s Saif Saaeed Shaheen on 3 Sept 2004.

An ambitious pace was requested ­ – one that would result in a finishing time of around 7:52 – and that’s exactly what the Ethiopian athlete managed as he crossed the finish line in 7:52.11 to take 1.52 seconds off the mark set 19 years prior.

“I’m happy and very proud, ” said lemecha, who started his year with a world indoor record over 3000m.

“I felt so fast during the race, so confident,” he said. “The world record is not a surprise; it was my plan to beat it tonight in Paris. It’s the result of my full determination.”

The other athlete that saw her record confirmed was Kenya’s Kipyegon who has achieved three world records since June.

Two of those marks – in the women’s 1500m and 5000m – are now officially in the record books. Her women’s mile record set in Monaco on 21 July is pending ratification.

The first of Kipyegon’s world records was set at the Golden Gala, a Wanda Diamond League meeting, in Florence on 2 June. On that occasion, the Kenyan ran 3:49.11 to break the women’s world 1500m record of 3:50.07 that had been set by Ethiopia’s Genzebe Dibaba in Monaco on 17 July 2015.

“There’s still more to come,” said Kipyegon after taking down the eight-year-old record. “I’m still working on running faster than that, faster than 3:49. I’m really thankful today that I managed to run 3:49 and I’m still heading towards beautiful races in the rest of the season.”

Just a week later she smashed 5000m world record of 14:06.62 set by Ethiopia’s Letesenbet Gidey at the Wanda Diamond League Meeting in Paris, on 9 June.

Kipyegon still broke the record in her third ever race at the distance, clocking 14:05.20.

“I didn’t think about the world record, I don’t know how I made it,” said a surprised Kipyegon. “I just wanted to improve on my PB, the world record was not my plan. I just ran after Gidey – she is an amazing lady.”

Spanish athlete Perez achieved her world record in Podebrady on 21 May, clocking 2:37:15 to improve the women’s 35km race walk mark by 29 seconds.

Perez was eclipsed the world record of 2:37:44 that had been set by Peru’s double world champion Kimberly Garcia in Dudince on 25 March.

“It is a nice feeling to finish the race and the time is a big reward,” said Perez. ” I am glad to see that race walk can be attractive and can attract such great crowds like in Podebrady.”

– WA