NAIROBI, Kenya, Jan 12 – The Kenyan duo of Rhonex Kipruto and Sheila Chepkirui made history in the streets of Valencia on Sunday morning when they broke the 10 kilometres World Records.
Kipruto cut the tape in 26 minutes and 24 seconds to set a new mark, even before World Athletics ratifies Ugandan Joshua Cheptegei’s record also set in Valencia last month.
Cheptegei capped his year with a well worked win in Valencia when he clocked 26 minutes and 38 seconds to improve Leonard Komon’s previous record by six seconds. Komon’s record had stood for nine years.
Kipruto who won bronze in the 10,000m at the World Championships in Doha last September was the star attraction in the race, and the 20-year old who came inches close to breaking the record in Prague in 2018 lived to expectations, winning the race, and in World Record time.
Kipruto’s half-way split of 13:18 was also an improvement on the 5km world record. His second half of 13:06 was even faster, although would not be eligible for ratification.
Kipruto’s fellow Kenyan Benard Kimeli finished second in 27:12, just ahead of Switzerland’s Julien Wanders, who set a European record of 27:13.
Chepkirui, meanwhile, was one of three women to finish inside 30 minutes – the first time that has happened in any road race – as the Kenyan crossed the line in 29:42.
Her performance takes one second off Joyciline Jepkosgei’s world record set in Prague in 2017.
Rosemary Wanjiru and steeplechase specialist Norah Jeruto were second and third respectively, both clocking 29:46 to move to equal third on the world all-time list.