Nairobi — Former World U20 champion Jackline Chepkoech warmed up perfectly for the World Championships in Budapest next month, as she won the 3,000m women’s steeplechase at the London Diamond League on Sunday, setting a new Meet record while at it.
Jackline upset her nemesis and role model, world record holder Beatrice Chepkoech to second, as she dipped under nine minutes for the first time ever, clocking 8:57.35.
This not only counted as her new personal best, but also the Meet record in London, as well as a new world leading time heading to the Worlds Championships.
“Really didn’t expect to win today. Beating the meeting record feels incredible and such an achievement to finish it in under nine minutes,” Jackline said after the race.
In second place, Beatrice ran her fastest time this season, but was still way off Jackline. She clocked 9:04.34, while home girl Aimee Pratt completed the podium, way off in third with a season’s best time of 9:16.10.
Both Jackline and Beatrice are headed to Budapest.
“It was a quick race. I enjoy racing in London, but I’m disappointed with my time. I’ll be at the Worlds in Budapest. I want to focus on my speed before then,” the World Record holder said.
Meanwhile, Beatrice Chebet also warmed up perfectly for the World Championships after setting a new personal best time in the women’s 5,000m, despite finishing second behind Ethiopia’s Gudaf Tsegay.
Chebet, who won silver in Oregon last year, clocked 14:12.92, shaving off almost 12 seconds from her initial personal best.
Tsegay won the race in 14:12.29, which also counted as her personal best and a new Meet Record in London.
So fast was the race that all the top five women finished in under 14:20, and set different records. Sifan Hassan timed 14:13.42, a new Personal best and European Record, Eisa Medina of Ethiopia clocking 14:16.54, which is a new World U20 record while Alicia Monson ran 14:19.45, a new North American record.
“I’m so happy but very confused, I didn’t expect it. 14:12 from 14:34 is an amazing result, my target was to come and run my personal best. I’m happy to be on the podium and but it’s even better to have a personal best, I knew it was going to be hard so I’m incredibly happy,” an excited Chebet said after the race.
In the men’s 1500m, former World Champion Timothy Cheruiyot had an evening to forget as he finished a disappointing eighth, clocking 3:31.44.
Cheruiyot is looking to get back on tip top shape, but has a lot to work on as he builds towards the World Championships.