Only 1,000m world record will quench Chepng’etich's thirst in Brussels

Kenya's Faith Kipyegon celebrates after winning the women's 1000 metres event during the Diamond League Athletics Meeting at The Louis II Stadium in Monaco on August 14, 2020.

Photo credit: Valery Hache | AFP

What you need to know:

  • Runners to converge on Brussels for fourth leg of World Athletics Diamond League on September 4
  • She will take another shot at the mark at the AG Memorial Van Damme Diamond League meeting in Brussels on Sept. 4

Reigning 1,500 metres Olympics champion, Faith Chepng’etich, will take another shot at the 1,000m world record when she lines up at the AG Memorial Van Damme Diamond League meeting in Brussels on September 4.

Chepng’etich, who was  17 hundredths of a second shy of Svetlana Masterkova's 2 minutes, 28.98 sec world record time when she competed in Monaco two weeks ago, is optimistic that she will accomplish her mission next week.

She told Nation Sport that she was not aware of how close she was to the record while competing, and this has motivated her to work even harder.

“Back then, I didn’t know that I almost broke the world record time over the distance, I will give it another try next week in Brussels. It’s a tall order, but I trust my training because I’m in good shape,” Chepng’etich said.

She won the 1,000m race in a world leading time of 2:29.15 ahead of Britain’s Laura Muir who timed 2:30.82, while Mageean Ciara from Ireland settled for third place in 2:31.06.

The Global Sports Communication-based Chepng’etich said she hopes to smash the record set in 1996.

Trains alone

The athlete, who has been training in Kaptagat, said she said has been going through the paces alone or sometimes she trains with a small group of runners. However, she said lack of a track for speed work has been a big challenge.

“My training has been good, but not up to the standard because all tracks we were using were closed. I have been doing my training along the road which is not that good. The season has started, and I’m going to do my best because this is my job,” Chepng’etich said.

Chepng’etich is among the few Kenyan athletes who have competed during the Covid-19 period. She said that there are a lot of rules and protocols to be followed.

“We are used to cheers from fans, but because of the strict measures put in place to prevent the spread of coronavirus we are competing in empty stadiums. We pray that the virus will be contained soon so that we can get back to sports fully.”

Chepng’etich is looking forward to the re-opening of camps which were closed due to the virus. She said that group training yields better results for athletes.

Training alongside some of the best athletes such as world marathon record holder Eliud Kipchoge and world half marathon record holder Geoffrey Kamworor is a major boost, she said.

At the same time, women’s world marathon record holder Brigid Kosgei will start her season with a rare appearance at the AG Memorial Van Damme Diamond League meeting in Brussels. She will be competing against The Netherland’s Sifan Hassan in attacking the one-hour world record in the 18.517km.