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World record for Bekele

August 27, 2005 11:08 IST

World and Olympic champion Kenenisa Bekele smashed his world 10,000 metres record with a time of 26 minutes 17.53 seconds to the delight of the capacity crowd at the Brussels Golden League meeting on Friday.

Pole vaulter Yelena Isinbayeva was unable to add to her remarkable tally of world records though, failing at 5.02 metres.

The Russian has set nine records this year, the last, 5.01, at the world championships in Helsinki earlier this month.

Isinbayeva won the competition at the King Baudouin Stadium with a vault of 4.93.

Ethiopia's Bekele had attempted to better his world record of 26:20.31 in Hengelo in May but gusting winds put paid to the effort.

This time, conditions were cool and still and with his younger brother Tariku acting as pacemaker, Bekele went through the halfway stage five seconds inside record pace.

Roared on by the crowd and running in rhythm to the pounding of African drums, Bekele then broke clear in an extraordinary display of solo running.

France's Hassan El Lahssini was second in a European record of 26:39.77. Kenyan teenager Samuel Wanjiru was third in a world junior record of 26:51.87.

"The second part of the race, especially on my own, was very difficult," Bekele told reporters.

"The crowd really got behind me and they were part of this victory."


Tariku was delighted with his brother's achievement.

"My brother was really tremendous and I helped him break the world record," the 18-year-old said.

"I gave everything as I ran through 5,000 metres. After the race he was so happy and I was so happy that we didn't find the right words. We didn't need to."

World champion Said Saaeef Shaheen narrowly failed to beat his world record when he raced away to a comprehensive victory in the 3,000 metres steeplechase.

Qatari national Shaheen clocked seven minutes 55.51 seconds for the fastest time in the world this year and the third quickest in history.

The 22-year-old, who is unbeaten in the event for three years, was just outside his record of 7:53.63 set at the same meeting in 2004.

Second-placed Simon Vroemen of the Netherlands was more than nine seconds behind Shaheen in a European record of 8:04.95.

"My coach told me the pacemakers would take me to 2,000 metres but there was a lot of confusion at 1,600 because the third pacemaker had dropped out before the second one," a disappointed Shaheen told reporters.

The former Kenyan, who switched nationality in 2003 for financial reasons, said he would make another attempt on the record at next month's world athletics final in Monaco.


Olympic champion Meseret Defar of Ethiopia comfortably won the 5,000 metres in 14:28.98, the third fastest time in history and an African record, as the distance events produced the best performances.

World and Olympic champion Justin Gatlin came though late to win the 100 metres in 9.99 ahead of France's Ronald Pognon.

Russian Tatyana Lebedeva won the triple jump with a top effort of 14.94 metres ahead of world champion Trecia Smith to remain the sole contender for the $1 million Golden League jackpot.

Lebedeva, who pulled out of the world championships final with an Achilles problem, must win the event at the final Golden League meeting in Berlin to claim the prize.

France's Christine Arron won the women's 100 metres in 10.97 to gain some consolation for the fourth place in Zurich last week that ended her hopes of a share in the jackpot.

World champion Yuliya Pechonkina finished a surprise third in the 400 metres hurdles behind American Lashinda Demus after tying up in the home straight.

There were also defeats for other world champions. Bahrain's Rashid Ramzi lost out to Kenyan Daniel Komen Kipchirchir over 1,500 metres, Benjamin Limo finished third behind fellow Kenyan Eliud Kipchoge in the 5,000 and Ukraine's Yuriy Krimarenko could only manage 2.20 metres for 10th place in the high jump which was won by Cuban Victor Moya with 2.31.

Alison Wildey
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