Almaz Ayana sets African All-Comers 3000m Record in Rabat

Almaz Ayana RabatAlmaz Ayana (Ethiopia) opened her 2015 campaign last month by running the fastest 5000m on Asian soil. Another continent, a different event, but the feat she achieved at the IAAF World Challenge meeting in Rabat on Sunday was essentially the same.

Competing in her first race since clocking a world-leading PB of 14:14.32 in the 5000m at the IAAF Diamond League meeting in Shanghai, Ayana dominated the 3000m at the Mohammed VI d’Athletisme in the Moroccan capital.

Paced through the first kilometre in 2:48.44, the world bronze medallist broke away from the rest of the field in the early stages. She maintained the pace that had been set and went through 2000m in 5:35.10, at which point it became clear that she was on course to break her PB of 8:24.58.

She continued churning out the 67-second laps right to the end, eventually crossing the line in a world-leading 8:22.22. Not only did she break the African all-comers’ record, her time was also an outdoor Ethiopian record.

Two-time world champion Vivian Cheruiyot finished more than 17 seconds behind, taking the runner-up spot in 8:39.75. Fellow Kenyan Irene Jelagat was a close third in 8:39.99.



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