Cheptegei after the 10,000m victory in Doha. Getty Images
Event – NN Valencia World Record Day
Venue – Estadi Del Turia de Valencia
Date – Wednesday, October 7
Time – 10:50pm (Uganda time)
How To Watch – NN Running Team YouTube
Uganda’s Joshua Cheptegei will attempt to break a longstanding 10,000m World Record.
The record holder is Kenenisa Bekele (Ethiopia) who set a mark of 26:17.53 in Brussels in 2005 and it remains the long standing world record in history.
Bekele, then, smashed Haile Gebrselassie’s 26:22.75 time he had set on June 1, 1998 in Hengelo.
Who are the organisers – The event is organised by The NN Running Team, Global Sport Communication and SD Roadrunner.
How Will The Drama Unfold
Eight athletes will take part including the protagonist Cheptegei. Uganda’s Stephen Kissa and Viktor Kiplangat are also part of the race.
Others on the start list include Shadrack Kipchirchir (USA), Raul Celada (Spain), Luuk Maas (Netherlands), David Bascunana (Spain) and Bjorn Koreman (Netherlands).
As usual, the runners will compete over 25 laps of a 400m track.
Six pacesetters, categorised into two groups (pace group 1 and 2), have been included and will be led by Roy Hoornweg who will be the first pacemaker, Ryan Gregson and Kenya’s Nicolas Kimeli.
Can Cheptegei Deliver?
Cheptegei’s talent is never in doubt following his recent exploits that include three World Record holds – (5000m – 12:35.36, 5km – 12:51 and 15km – 41:05).
He is also the World Cross Country Champion (2019) and World Champion 10,000m (2019).
In Valencia, he has to at least establish below 13:05 in the first five kilometers to have a chance.
What does the main man say?
Cheptegei: “I have been preparing for this. Breaking Bekele’s record is tough, but you have to work to achieve it. I have already achieved it on the cross and in the 5,000m so I have already shown that it can be done.”
Cheptegei, who will also be guided by the innovative wave light technology, has his 10,000 m personal best at 26:48.36 which he achieved in Doha at the 2019 World Athletics Championship.
Earlier, there will be a 5000m world record chase by Letesenbet Gidey with Uganda’s Winnie Nanyondo shortlisted on the start list.