- Beatrice Chebet set a new World record in the 5km
- She is the reigning World Cross Country Champion
- This was her final race of the year
Beatrice Chebet has smashed the 5km world road running record, after running 14:13 to win at the Cursa dels Nassos, a World Athletics road race, in Barcelona on Sunday.
The Kenyan 23-year-old World Champion improved on the previous women-only world record of 14:29 set by Ethiopia’s Senbere Teferi in Herzogenaurach on 12 September 2021, while her performance is also faster than the women’s world record set in a mixed race of 14:19, achieved by Ethiopia’s Ejegayehu Taye at the 2021 Cursa dels Nassos.
Taye finished second behind Chebet on this occasion, clocking 14:21, while compatriot Lilian Kasait was third in 14:25 as the top three – all 5km medallists at the World Athletics Road Running Championships Riga 23 in October – dipped under the previous women-only world record mark.
Uganda’s Joy Cheptoyek was also inside that mark, finishing fourth in 14:27.
“I came to Barcelona determined to better the world record as I felt capable of that. This world record means a lot for me, I can’t believe it,” said Chebet after the race.
It was a brilliant way for the 23 year old to end her otherwise massively successful year. She’d started off by winning the senior women’s world cross country championship, then clinched bronze in the women’s 5,000m at the World Championships in Budapest.
Beatrice caps off successful year
Her season closing event prior to the race in Barcelona was at the inaugural world road running championships where she clinched the 5km title.
In Barcelona, she was all out to ensure she closed her season with as much success as she started with.
Held under ideal weather conditions (15ºC and a very slight wind), the women’s event was paced by Kassie Wubrist Aschal, another 18-year-old Ethiopian athlete who recently set a 14:41 PB in Lille.
She was closely followed by the quintet of Chebet, Taye, Rengeruk, Eisa and Cheptoyek.
The opening kilometre was a swift and promising 2:49, well on schedule to challenge the world record. That pace continued over the second kilometre as the group went through the 2km mark in 5:38, but Wubrist left her pacing duties just 100m later.
While Eisa began to lose ground before half way, the rhythm at the helm in the absence of the pacemaker dropped dangerously as Chebet, Rengeruk and Taye reached the 3km point in 8:38 for a 3:00 split, while Cheptoyek ran a couple of seconds behind the Riga medallists.
Beatrice shows her worth
Over the penultimate kilometre, Taye moved to the front to share the lead with Chebet as they both took turns in their attempt to hit record pace.
The trio clocked 11:36 as they hit the 4km mark after another relatively slow 2:58 split but Rengeruk could not maintain that speed and the race became a thrilling battle between Chebet and Taye.
Yet that clash was short-lived as after negotiating a narrow bend some 500m from the finish, Chebet found another gear.
She picked up the pace and opened a sizeable gap on Taye in a matter of a few metres. The clock read 12:51 with 500m remaining, which suggested a world record was more than feasible for Chebet – holder of a 14:05.92 lifetime best on the track, set when securing world bronze in Budapest.
Chebet’s closing metres were terrific, as she extended her advantage on world record-holder Taye to finally reach the finish line unopposed in 14:13.
Taye was second in 14:21, the world 10,000m bronze medallist wearing the bib number one courtesy of her previous wins in Barcelona in 2021 and 2022.
-Additional info by World Athletics.