News17 May 2009

Gebrselassie and Cheruiyot take expected Manchester victories but record hopes blown away


Haile Gebrselassie running in the 2009 BUPA Great Manchester Run (10km) (© Getty Images)

Haile Gebrselassie's hopes of regaining his World 10km record and Vivian Cheruiyot's intention of smashing Paula Radcliffe's UK All-Comers record were scuppered by strong winds at this morning's BUPA Great Manchester Run (10km).

The BUPA Great Manchester Run is an IAAF Gold Label Road Race.

Gebrselassie aiming to better the 27:01 achieved by Kenya's Micah Kogo at the end of March was on schedule at the halfway point to attain his target at the head of the massive 33,000 field.

But after blasting through the first five kilometres in 13:31 his plans were blown away when facing a very strong headwind on the return to the city centre finish line.

However, the 36-year-old Ethiopian easily won a second Manchester title after his victory four years in a time of 27:39 ahead of Ali Zaied of Libya and Ukraine's Sergiy Lebid who respectively clocked 28:13 and 28:36.

Gebrselassie who set a UK All-Comers' record of 27:25 on his last visit to Manchester - arch rival Kogo lowered it by four seconds in 2007 - was still delighted considering the unhelpful weather conditions with what was an outstanding display.

"Today it was wonderful in the first half but on the way back the wind was horrible," said the World marathon record holder after posting the fourth fastest time in the world so far this year.

Gebrselassie who fought bravely but without success to master the elements, added: "I wanted to run a world record but in the second half it proved too difficult."

However he believes his outing today was the perfect preparation ahead of his attack on one of his own World record, the One Hour Run which he’ll attempt on the track in Hengelo on 1 June. His current record is 21.285m which he ran in 2007 in Ostrava.

In the women’s race Cheruiyot who had her eyes on Paula Radcliffe's UK all-comers mark of 30:38 also saw her opportunity wrecked by the elements.

The tiny Kenyan and world's fastest woman over 10 kilometres this year also produced a fast start, storming through the halfway point in 15:27 but then the World 5000m silver medallist who was over 200m clear of the field also found herself battered by the wind before coming home in a still respectable time of 32:01.
"I broke clear after 4km and the race was not hard to win but the wind was so strong I couldn't achieve the time I wanted," said the 25-year whose next major appearance will be challenging the 2000m World record on the track in Eugene on 7 June.

Portugal's Sara Moreira this year's European Indoor 3000m silver medallist excelled to finish second in 32:33 with the consistent two-time former New York Marathon champion Jelena Prokopcuka of Latvia, third in 32:41.

Dave Martin – PA Sport – for the IAAF


1, H Gebrselassie (Ethiopia) 27:39
2, A Ali Zaied (Libya) 28:13
3, S Lebid (Ukraine) 28:36
4, F Joseph (Tanzania) 28:41
5, J-M Martinez (Spain) 28:42
6, C Thompson (GB) 28:45
7, A Lemoncello (GB) 29:18
8, P Nicholls (GB) 29:21
9, M Lauret (Netherlands) 29:34
10, A Brownlee (GB) 29min 35sec

1, V Cheruiyot (Kenya) 32:01
2, S Moreira (Portugal) 32:33
3, J Prokopcuka (Latvia) 32:41
4, A Kalovics (Hungary) 33:23
5, M Sig Moller (Denmark) 33:33
6, L Simon (Romania) 33:46
7, R Robinson (GB) 34:13
8, J Potter (GB) 34:14
9, A Aguillar (Spain) 34:20
10, C Hoyte (GB) 34:21

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