Olympic Games: Obiri, Jeppchirchir Ethiopian rival receives major boost

Friday, May 24th, 2024 13:42 | By
Tigist Assefa wins the Berlin Marathon. PHOTO/World Athletics
Tigist Assefa wins the Berlin Marathon. PHOTO/World Athletics

Hellen Obiri and Peres Jepchirchir's rival in the 2024 Olympic Games Tigist Assefa has had a morale-boosting achievement after her world marathon record was ratified by World Athletics.

Assefa's record of 2:11:53 set in Berlin last year has been finally recognised as she prepares to feature in the Paris Games in August.

"The Ethiopian smashed the previous mark by more than two minutes at the Berlin Marathon on September 24, becoming the first woman to run inside 2:13 and 2:12, and erasing the world record of 2:14:04 that had been set by Kenya’s Brigid Kosgei in Chicago on October 13, 2019.

"During Assefa’s record-breaking run, a large pack of the leading contenders ran together through the early stages, passing through 5km in 15:58. 13 women were still in contact with the lead as they reached 10km in 31:45," World Athletics said in a statement.

How Assefa starred

The Ethiopian was in a very sensational form, given that by 15km, which she crossed in 47:26, alongside her compatriot Workenesh Edesa, she had managed to open up a slight gap.

Less than two kilometres later, Assefa was alone out in front, and she went on to reach the half-way stage in 1:06:20, comfortably inside the world record pace. Assefa, still looking incredibly relaxed and composed, covered the 25-35km section in a remarkable 31:02.

She finally conquered the Berlin course by increasing her pace in the final stage of the race before she charged through the finish line in 2:11:53.

“I hope that my performance will be motivation for young women athletes in Ethiopia and that the world record one year before the Olympic Games gives our country a boost for Paris,” Assefa said then.

Apart from Jepchirchir and Obiri, Brigid Jepkosgei will challenge Assefa in Paris.

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