By John Kwoba NAIROBI (Xinhua)
-- A world record is on the
mind of Olympic 3,000m steeplechase champion Conseslus
Kipruto as he makes his final appearance this season at
the Brussels Diamond League on Friday.
already clinched the 3,000m steeplechase Diamond Race,
and says he has high expectations for himself as he eyes
a record-breaking performance in Brussels.
always dreamt of breaking the world record. But it was
never a priority to me because I had never won anything
big. But after the Rio Olympics, everything has changed,
I can go for anything now,” Kipruto said on Thursday in
21-year-old has long been shadowed by the legendary
Ezekiel Kemboi, but managed to outpace his mentor to win
gold at the Rio Games.
he has been winning his races with apparent ease and
leads the world with his 8:00.12 personal best, which he
ran at the Diamond League meeting in Birmingham.
Surprisingly, however, he has yet to run under eight
minutes in his career but he is still going for a
full-blown world record attempt in Brussels, taking aim
at the mark of 7:53.63 set by Saif Saaeed Shaheen at the
same meeting in 2004.
Olympic silver medalist Evan Jager will also be in the
race and is aiming to break his own North American
record of 8:00.45.
women’s 5,000m, Olympic bronze medallist Almaz Ayana is
not quite as certain as Kipruto about taking the Diamond
Race, but she maintains a big advantage of 14 points in
acquired the 10,000m world record, she now aims to add
to her list of accolades with an attempt on the 5,000m
record of 14:11.15, held by her Ethiopian compatriot
Tirunesh Dibaba since 2008.
already come close to that mark at three Diamond League
outings this year, clocking 14:12.59 in Rome, 14:14.32
in Shanghai and 14:16.63 in Rabat, and she now owns
three of the six fastest times in history.
record will also somewhat make up for the visible
disappointment of not getting the gold in this event in
Rio, when stomach problems relegated her to third behind
Kenya’s Vivian Cheruiyot.
Ayana have the luxury of being able to chase times, but
many of the Diamond Race disciplines will likely go down
to the wire.
athlete keen to make amends will be Kenya’s Asbel Kiprop,
the world champion in the 1,500m.
seemed to be the star of the 1,500m prior to Rio
Olympics, but the three-time world champion drifted back
to sixth down the home straight in the final, so he will
be also hoping to redeem himself with a solid win
Brussels, ensuring that he lifts the Diamond Trophy.
A fast race
that might challenge his world-leading time of 3:29.33
could be in store, but he will face the quick-finishing
Olympic silver medalist Taoufik Makhloufi of Algeria,
who has opted for this event over the 800m.