Faith Kipyegon, photo by PhotoRun.net
Faith Kipyegon will be running the Women’s Dream Mile at the iconic Bislett Games in Oslo, Norway on Thursday, June 9. The meet is so steeped in tradition and is on my bucket list to visit, perhaps in 2017.
This year’s middle distance events, from the Dream Miles to the women’s steeple, to the men’s 5000 meters, look to be some serious racing! Here is how Justin Lagats sees the fields…
A look at the distance events at the Bislett Games, Oslo Diamond League:
The men’s ExxonMobil Dream mile will see Asbel Kiprop seeking to keep his record of remaining unbeaten this year.
So far, he has comfortably won Diamond league races in Doha, Eugene and Birmangham and continues to exhibit great form. Looking at the manner he has run his races this year, it is as though he has finally discovered the best way to stay on top of his game, having experimented with both front and back of pack running last year.
This year, he has been setting up a pace that has always put him ahead of his competitors early in the race with the help of his great pace setter, Andrew Kiptoo. However, there is a quality field in this race that will ensure that Asbel will not get an easy win. His compatriot, Elijah Manangoi, is a threat with his great finishing speed and the other contenders include Taoufik Makhloufi, Aman Wote and Robert Biwott.
Faith Kipyegon is the favorite to win the women’s Dream Mile. With her personal best time of 4:16.71 being faster by more than ten seconds to any of her competitors. Even though it is very hard to pick winners in Diamond League, with two recent Diamond league wins in Shanghai and Eugene, Faith Kipyegon looks dominant.
The men’s 5000m event has a large quality field, but Muktar Edris is the one who has started this year well by winning the distance in Shanghai and Eugene and looks set to win here. He is the only one with a seasonal best time under 13 minutes in the provisional start list this year. Thomas Longosiwa who is second to Edris in Diamond league points after finishing 3rd and 4th in Shanghai and Eugene respectively will be here too, together with Dejen Gebremeskel (who has run 12:46) , Yomif Kejelcha, Isaiah Koech, Hagos Gebrhiwet (who has run 12:47) and Edwin Soi, among others.
In the women 3000m steeplechase, Hyvin Kiyeng, whose personal best time is less than two seconds from the world record, is poised to have a comfortable race in the absence of Ruth Jebet of Bahrain who is so far not in the provisional start list. The two have exchanged the first two positions in Shanghai and Eugene and it will make a great race watching the two meet again before the Rio Olympics. Others to watch here will include Hiwot Ayalew, Assefa Sofia, Lydia Chepkurui and Diro Etenesh.
Since 2013, Justin Lagat has written for RunBlogRun. His weekly column is called A view from Kenya. Justin writes about the world of Kenyan athletics on a weekly basis and during championships, provides us additional insights into the sport.
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