Bahrain’s Kalkidan Gezahegne Breaks the World Record in the 10K, Running 29:38

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Photo credit: Xinhua News Agency - Getty Images
Photo credit: Xinhua News Agency - Getty Images
  • Kalkidan Gezahegne of Bahrain broke the world record in the 10K, running 29:38 at The Giants Geneva 10K on October 3.

  • Gezahegne led the race from the beginning, splitting 14:46 and 14:51 for the 5Ks.

  • The Ethiopian-born runner won the silver medal in the 10,000 meters at the Tokyo Olympics behind Sifan Hassan.

Continuing her breakthrough season, Kalkidan Gezahegne made history by breaking the world record in the 10K, winning The Giants Geneva 10K in 29:38 on October 3.

Almost two months after earning silver in the 10,000 meters at the Tokyo Games, the Ethiopian-born runner, who represents Bahrain in international competition, took five seconds off the previous world record (29:43) set by Joyciline Jepkosgei in 2017. Gezahegne’s performance on the roads of Geneva, Switzerland is also 12 seconds faster than her 10,000-meter personal best she set on the track in May.

Gezahegne, 30, didn’t waste any time asserting herself up front on the course that traverses the harbour along Lake Geneva. After blazing through the first 5K in 14:46 with her opponents trailing by five seconds, Gezahegne held her position for the last half of the race while her competitors drifted further away.

Running unchallenged, Gezahegne ran a 14:51 split for the final 5K, cruising to victory over Agnes Tirop, who finished second in 30:20. Tirop broke the women’s-only 10K world record (30:01) at Adizero Road to Records on September 12. Fellow Kenyan runner Celliphine Chespol, a two-time world U20 champion in the steeplechase, placed third in 30:28.

The men’s race was won by Kibiwott Kandie, the world record-holder in the half marathon. The Kenyan athlete came from behind to win in 26:51, six seconds ahead of runner-up Felix Kipkoech.

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