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Allure of breaking world record inspires
champ Obiri ahead of new season   

NAIROBI (Xinhua) -- With no Olympics or the World Championships, Kenya’s Hellen Obiri has confirmed she will make an attempt to break the women’s 5,000m record in 2018.

The Kenyan long distance athlete believes she will carry one her top form to next season and take on her rivals as she seeks to write another piece of history.

In the last two seasons, Obiri won the 5,000m world title and was second at the Rio Olympics.

“I have always thought about setting the world record. But in the last two seasons, my form has been good, but there was the doubt of chasing the wrong target. Now we have no big competition apart from the Commonwealth Games coming early in April,” Obiri said in Nairobi on Tuesday.

Obiri, 28, said she will consult her English manager Ricky Simms on the best race to break Ethiopia’s Tirunesh Dibaba’s nine years and five months old world record time of 14 minutes and 11.15 seconds.

Dibaba, 27, set the time while winning the 5,000m race in Oslo on June 6, 2008, and the only athlete who came close to breaking the record was compatriot world 5,000 silver medalist Almaza Ayana, who won Rome’s Diamond League in 14:12.59 last year.

This season, Obiri ran the world fastest times in 5,000m in Shanghai clocking 14:22.47 in May and two weeks later in Rome Diamond League won in a time of 14:18.37, a Kenyan record.

Her time in Rome was ranked fifth ever best with only Dibaba, Almaz Ayana, Meseret Defar (14:12.88) and Genzebe Dibaba (14:15.41) all from Ethiopia.

“I must say 2016 was a great season and I hope to uphold the same form into the coming season,” said Obiri. “Records are meant to be broken, I will take my chance and see if I can lower Dibaba’s record.”

However, before making that attempt, Obiri will want to recapture the 3,000m world indoor title during the championships in March 1-4 in Birmingham before focusing on the Commonwealth Games due April 4-15 in Gold Coast, Australia.

Obiri won the 2011 world indoor 3,000m title in Istanbul, Turkey, settled for silver in 2014 Sopot, Poland where Genzebe Dibaba beat her to the top spot.

She finished sixth in 1,500m at the 2014 Glasgow Commonwealth Games where the reigning Olympic and world 1,500m champion Faith Chepng’etich ruled the roost.

“I want to reclaim by indoor title before attempting the 10,000m crown at Commonwealth Games,” said Obiri.

However, the Africa Senior Championships planned for August 1-5 in Assaba, Nigeria may also interest her depending on her schedule.

             

 

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