IAAF Diamond League: Meseret Defar victorious in 5,000m race

Meseret Defar OsloOslo, Norway – Meseret Defar of Ethiopia scored her fourth Oslo win when she finished first in the IAAF Diamond League 5,000m race here yesterday.

Two-time Olympic 500m champion Meseret Defar is the distance queen of Oslo. The Ethiopian has won here three times before, highlighted by her 2007 World record of 14:16.63. She was beaten by Genzebe Dibaba in Shanghai in her first Diamond League appearance of 2013, but Defar wasn’t ready to suffer a defeat on one of her favourite European tracks.

After a good pace-making job – going through 3000m in 8:48.10 – Defar picked up the tempo in an attempt to run the sting out of her compatriot, Dibaba. The tactic worked and she kicked hard on the final lap to extend her margin over the field, covering the final 400m in 61.7 seconds.

Defar – who last summer didn’t win a single track races outside of the Olympics – was rewarded with a world-leading time of 14:26.90, her fastest performance since 2010 and the 12th fastest run ever.

“Before Shanghai I was sick and I nearly cancelled the race,” said Defar. “Here all was okay. I think I’m even in World record shape, but I’m not confident enough to try for it. This year the main goal is the 5000m but I think I will have a surprise for my fans. You will see in due time.”

Kenya’s Viola Kibiwot overtook a fading Dibaba to take second, 14:33.48 to 14:37.68. Read more

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