Track is my field: Mark Cullen's international track and field website featuring storytelling, commentary, and predictions and event analyses for the Olympics and World Championships. I'll be writing from the 2018 European Championships in Berlin in August. I'm active on Facebook and Twitter: @trackerati.

Friday, August 12, 2016

Small Bits of Insanity

Ethiopia's Almaz Ayana ran into history in Olympic Stadium in Rio de Janeiro this morning with her historic 29:17.45 decimation of the 10,000m world record.

The previous world record of 29:31.78 was held by China's Wang Junxia, set 23 years ago in 1993.

In the greatest 10k of its era and certainly one of the two or three greatest in history - women's or men's - the all-time lists were completely rewritten as four runners broke 30:00 minutes.

There are small bits of insanity in these results.

Eight national records were set, including that of the United States by Molly Huddle in 30:13.17 in 6th place.

The first 13 runners set personal bests and 18/35 finishers did so.

Former US citizen Alexi Pappas, now running for Greece, set the Greek national record of 31:36.16 - and finished seventeenth.

Most striking is simply this:

1. 29:17.45
2. 29:32.53
3. 29:42.56
4. 29:53.51

Kenya's Vivian Cheruiyot was second, Ethiopian legend Tirunesh Dibaba 3rd, and Kenya's Alice Nawowuma finished 4th after having done much to set up the race for Ayana in the first 5 kilometers.

If anything, it appeared Nawowuna was headed for bronze until Tirunesh Dibaba and she traded places twice between 7 and 8 kilometers, with the Ethiopian veteran pulling away to win the battle for 3rd.

Imagine running 29:53.51 and finishing 4th.

In my preview of this race I suggested that it was time for the 22-year-old Nawowuna to run an open 5,000m race to break her prodigious 15:16.74 - run when she was 16 years old.

Today she did just that.

She led the race at 5,000m in 14:46.81.





1 comment:

  1. The fact that certain countries/people are allowed to dope is now beyond disgusting. The political reasons behind this should be looked into by everyone. But sheeple are sheeple, and they blindly accept whatever they are told.

    ReplyDelete