Lessons to learn from the 1500m races that were run on Day 7 of the Doha world championships

Kenya's Ronald Kwemoi leading one of the men's 1500m heats
The shortest of all the track races that have more than ten runners running it is the 1500m event. There is a reason why they restrict the number of runners in 400m and 800m races, and why each one is assigned a lane to follow. It gives ample time and space for runners to avoid jostling and pushing as they seek the best positions to stay in a race.

On the other hand, the 1500m race is often marred by athletes getting boxed into the inside lanes, getting tripped and being at the wrong place at certain times in the race. This race is a combination of both speed and race tactics. One has to know when to be at a vantage position during the race and to react at the right time.

Hellen Obiri’s chances to defend her 5000m title got better, and the opposite happened for Faith Kipyegon, as Sifan Hassan chose the 1500m race over the 5,000m on Day 6 of Doha World championships

Hellen Obiri after winning the world title in 2017
The chances for Hellen Obiri to defend her 5000m world title slightly improved on day six of the world championships after Sifan Hassan finally settled on the 1500m instead of the 5,000m. Hellen Obiri who was disappointed by finishing outside the medal bracket in the women’s 10,000m event was back in action, winning the first heat of the 5000m races in 14:52.13. This became the fastest time of the evening and must have given Obiri the confidence she would need in the final on Saturday.

Good deeds were rewarded in the second heat of this event. Watching the start of the second heat, one would have easily wondered whether the athletes knew that they had to make the race a fast one in order to better their chances of qualifying to the final through their times, in case they would not finish in the top 5 automatic positions.

Conseslus Kipruto assured Kenyans that he would continue the Kenyan 3,000m steeplechase tradition in the men’s 3000m steeplechase on Day 5 of the Doha world championships.

Conseslus Kipruto after winning his 3000mSC heat in Doha
The men’s 3000m steeplechase final was shaping up into a very exciting final after what just happened in the heats. Not only would the four Kenyans who made it to the finals be looking out for Soufiane El Bakkali of Morroco and USA’s Hillary Bor and France’s Djilali Bedrani, but more importantly, the three Ethiopians who also made it to the finals and are beginning to invade a territory that has always belonged to Kenyans at the world championships for a long time.

For the Kenyan runners led by Conseslus Kipruto, they knew that Kenyans have always won gold medals and dominated this event from as early as 1968 by great legends that included Amos Biwott, among others. They were not going to let it end in their era. It would be like letting the relay baton drop when your teammates have safely delivered it to you and you are already so far ahead of your competitors.

Brigid Kosgei runs an amazing new world record of 2:14:04 at the 2019 Chicago marathon

Brigid Kosgei after smashing Paula Radcliffe's world record in Chicago. Photo by organizers
As we were just about to recover from the shock that struck us yesterday while watching Eliud Kipchoge running a time that most scientists had sworn was impossible for a human being to achieve in a marathon, Brigid Kosgei just gave us another shock today after just running 2:14:04 at the Chicago Marathon to shatter a sixteen year old world record by over one minute and twenty seconds!

Just 10 minutes into the race and Kosgei still had just one other runner remaining beside her. But that wasn’t for long. At the 5km point, Kosgei was alone with two pacesetters as she crossed it in an unimaginable 15:28.