Monaco, Principality of Monaco | URN | Uganda’s Joshua Kiprui Cheptegei proved his prowess once again by breaking the 5,000m world record at the 2020 Diamond League in Monaco on Friday 14th night.
Cheptegei recorded a time of 12:35.36 to beat Ethiopia’s Kenenisa Bekele’s record of 12:37.35 he set in Hengelo, Netherlands in 2004. He started the 2020 season in style by setting a new world road 5km record of 12:51 in Monaco, besting the old fastest time by 9 seconds.
Uganda’s second runner in the race Stephen Kissa started well and set the pace, but bowed out and did not finish the race. Nicholas Kimeli Kipkorir from Kenya who ran neck to neck with Cheptegei in some of the laps finished second in a time of 12:51.78, while another Kenyan Jacob Krop was third.
On his Twitter handle, President Yoweri Kaguta Museveni congratulated Cheptegei. “Congratulations to Cheptegei who has set a new 5,000m world record at the Monaco Diamond League. You have brought honour, pride and joy to your country. Well done,” said Museveni.
Halimah Nakaayi and Winnie Nanyondo failed to find their good form as they finished 5th and 8th respectively in the 1,000m women’s race. Nakaayi recorded a national record and personal best time of 2:32.12.
The four athletes were financially supported by the president before they were last Saturday flagged off by First Lady and Minister of Education and Sports Janet Kataaha Museveni.
Government cleared the team to travel on a chartered Uganda Airlines flight to Nairobi before they connected to France together with the Kenyan athletes on another special flight.