News Archive

News Archive

Shaheen wins fast steeplechase race in Rome on Friday - second leg of the TDK Golden League 2005.

Saif Saaeed Shaheen's dramatic last ditch win in the 3000m

Steeplechase, and a three way battle at 2.36m which ended in a 2.38m

victory in the High Jump, stood out in Rome ’s Olympic stadium at

Friday's Borotalco Golden Gala, the second leg of the TDK Golden League


Ramzi repeats Rome win

Rashid Ramzi of Bahrain had shown a wonderful turn of speed at 800m in

Lausanne on Tuesday, and he brought that pace to Rome on Friday at

1500m, convincingly outsprinting Jackpot contender Daniel Kipchirchir

Komen (KEN). Ramzi’s time topped the Area record (3:30.25) he had set

on this track last year when beating El Guerrouj, setting new marks of

3:30.00, the world season’s lead. Komen was second in 3:30.37, and

Olympic silver medallist Bernard Lagat ( USA ) third 3:31.09.

Ethiopian team trial

The Jackpot hopes of Kenyan Edith Masai were dashed by an Ethiopian

triumvirate, as Tirunesh Dibaba, Meseret Defar and their older

Ethiopian compatriot Berhane Adere took hold of the race, which at the

bell had been led by Britain ’s Jo Pavey. Masai had followed behind the

two pacemakers throughout most of the race (3000m 8:49.13, Ines

Chenonge) but in the final charge she was left for pace, as Olympic

champion Defar led the Ethiopian sprint home.

Hanging on to her vest all the way was Adere, the World 10,000m

champion. Dibaba in third until the last 15 metres when she caught her

two teammates and just got ahead at the line to win in 14:32.57, a meet

record. Adere also passed Defar taking second (14:32.79) with the

Olympic champion, third (14:32.90). This was a blanket finish if there

ever was one, and the determination of the top three was heightened

because this was one of the Ethiopian team selection races for the

World Championships.

Benhassi exploits Cherkasova’s tactical error

In the women’s 800m, a tightly boxed Svetlana Cherkasova gave away her

chance of the Jackpot. Poor positioning on the final bend which found

the Russian caught on the inside of the curve as the race entered the

final straight, a position which necessitated a dramatic cut through

manoeuvre to break free, killed off any hopes that she might have had

of victory. By the time she was out of trouble, Morocco ’s Hasna

Benhassi was already away to victory. The winning time was 1:58.41, the

sixth best time of the year, with Cherkasova second (1:58.47), and a

superb new national record for Kenia Sinclair of Jamaica in third

(1:58.88). In all seven women went below 2 minutes.

In the men’s 800m, African champion and Jackpot contender William

Yiampoy was just never near the party. In the run into the finish it

was his compatriot Alfred Yego in a personal best of 1:44.62 who took

the honours. Olympic silver medallist Mbulaeni Mulaudzi (RSA) was

second (1:44.70), ahead of Olympic champion Yuriy Borzakovskiy (RUS),

third in 1:44.81. Yiampoy was a distant seventh 1:45.59.

Dip finish in fast steeple

Qatar’s World champion and World record holder Saif Saaeed Shaheen left

it almost too late to win the men’s 3000m Steeplechase. The 22 year-old

who until tonight had been the only man to have gone under 8 minutes

this season, was left for speed as the bell sounded and Olympic bronze

medallist Paul Kipsiele Koech burst ahead. He quickly opened up a 10m

lead on his former Kenyan team-mate, only to be closed down by Shaheen

at the water jump. That seemed to be it, but no, it was Koech who

immediately forced the pace again, and led into the final barrier.

Finally, Shaheen produced the turn of speed for which he is famous, and

in a last ditch effort caught Koech on the line in a dip finish.

The finishing times were 7:56.34 to 7:56.37, a world season’s lead for

the winner, and a personal best for Koech. The times were significantly

also the fifth and sixth fastest in the world all-time. Olympic silver

medallist Brimin Kiruto (KEN) was third in 8:04.22, also a personal

best, with former World record holder Brahim Boulami, fourth, 8:04.92.

Songok socks Kipchoge again

When a few weeks ago Isaac Songok defeated World 5000m champion Eliud

Kipchoge in the Kenyan World Championships trials, the athletics world

was happy to take Kipchoge’s explanation that he had been forced to run

that 5000m when really he would have preferred to have run the 1500m

that day in preparation to defend his World title later this summer.

Today, though Kipchoge was beaten again by the 21-year-old who until

this season had raced mainly at 1500m, with Songok inflicting a

devastating final 60 metres burst which took Kipchoge by surprise, and

to which he had no answer. Songok crossed in 12:52.29 (PB and second

fastest time in the year), a desperate Kipchoge just behind in 12:52.76.

In all seven runners were under 13 minutes, with personal bests for

Gebre Gebremariam of Ethiopia (3rd -12:52.80), Kenya’s World Junior

champion Augustine Choge, 18yrs (4th 12:53.66 – PB), a season’s best

for Ethiopian Dejene Birhanu (5th 12:56.24), a Ugandan national record

for Boniface Kiprop (6th 12:58.43), and Benjamin Limo, the last of

those under 13mins in a time of 12:58.66 (7th)

Chris Turner

IAAF Editorial Manager

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