Peres Jepchirchir outsprinted her opponents to reclaim the World Half Marathon title in a new Women’s Only World Record time of 1:05:16 in Gdynia, Poland on Saturday afternoon.
During Friday’s pre-race conference, Jepchirchir had warned that the world record of 1:05:34 she set in September in Valencia was in danger of falling due to the quality of the field.
And with a spirited sprint in the final 500m, the Kenyan who won the title in 2016 proved her prediction right, slashing 18 seconds off her previous mark.
Germany’s Melat Yisak Kejeta took silver silver in a women-only European record of 1:05:18 after beating Ethiopia’s Yalemzerf Yehualaw with a sprint, the latter taking bronze in 1:05:19.
Meanwhile, Kenya’s former world record holder Joyciline Jepkosgei finished sixth in a time of 1:05:58. She dropped out of the leading pack after taking a tumble in the final five kilometres tripping with Ethiopian Ababel Yeshaneh who finished a place above her.
In the team standings, Ethiopia beat Kenya to the top spot in a World Half Marathon championship record of three hours, 16 minutes and 19 seconds while Kenya clocked three hours, 18 minutes and 10 seconds.