NAIROBI, Kenya, Sept 25 – Olympic 1500m Champion Faith Kipyegon ended the 2020 Diamond League season in a scintillating fashion after she cruised to victory in the women’s 800m at the Doha Diamond League on Friday.
Kipyegon, who clocked a World Leading time and a Personal Best Time of 1:57.68, has had a successful season. For the fourth time in as many races, Kipyegon produced a dominant run to maintain her unbeaten streak this year.
“I’m so grateful and so happy to win here. Yesterday when I saw the pacemaker was aiming for 1:57 pace, I was so nervous. I was really surprised I had that kick,” said Kipyegon.
The other Kenyan in the race, Eunice Sum, the 2013 World Champion, faded to a disappointing ninth position in a time of 2:02.42 which is her Season’s Best.
Contesting the 800m for the first time in five years, the 26-year-old Kenyan was in the middle of the pack for the first lap as the pacemaker led the field through half way in 57.72. Spain’s Esther Guerrero then took up the running as Kipyegon navigated her way through the pack, hitting the front with 200 metres to go.
She increased her pace all the way to the finish, charging through the line in a world-leading PB of 1:57.68. In second, Guerrero was rewarded with a PB of 1:59.22, the first sub-two-minute clocking of her career, while Adelle Tracey took third place in 1:59.87.
In the corresponding men’s race, Ferguson Rotich made it two out two wins this season after storming to victory in a season’s best time of 1:44.17 to upset on-form World 1500m Champion Timothy Cheruiyot, who did not make it to the podium.
The men’s 800m played out in similar fashion with world bronze medallist Rotich taking command on the back straight before striding ahead to victory. After a 50.83-second opening lap, Britain’s Elliot Giles led until about 300 metres to go when Rotich hit the front.
The 30-year-old Kenyan eased away from the rest of the field and crossed the line in a season’s best of 1:44.16, recording his fifth consecutive win. Giles was second in a PB of 1:44.56.