No half measures for Kiptum in Valencia
VALENCIA is now the home of the half-marathon. After Joyciline Jepkosgei set a women’s world record in the Spanish city last year, last weekend saw Abraham Kiptum take the men’s world record.
Coincidentally, Valencia also staged the IAAF World Half-Marathon Championships this year.
Jepkosgei’s world record came in the city’s annual Medio Maraton Valencia 12 months ago with 64:51 and in the 2018 event on Sunday Kiptum ran 58:18 to beat Zersenay Tadese’s eight-year-old world mark by five seconds.
Kiptum began life as an elite distance runner in the marathon with third place in Rabat in 2015 in 2:11:36 before improving to 2:05:26 for the runner-up spot in Amsterdam and a 2:06:29 victory in the Daegu Marathon.
But over 13.1 miles he ran a 59:09 PB in Copenhagen six weeks ago and then in Valencia ran 10km splits of 28:02 and 27:16 to take the record (Results, p46).
“I can’t believe it, I’m over the moon,” said the 29-year-old. “Obviously I knew I was in good shape because I set a PB last month in Copenhagen but I was eager to run in Valencia because it’s one of the flattest circuits I’ve ever run and I was confident of improving on my best.”
Another Kenyan, Mark Kiptoo, ran a world M40 record of 2:07:50 in the Frankfurt Marathon.