Renato, I enjoyed reading the article about your predictions for the World Championships and have some questions:
1. Bekele, as great as he is, will have a challenge in the 10,000m. His teammate Sileshi Sihine ran 26:57 this year as was very upset. He can eventually challenge for the WR. He has the #4 time ever in the 5,000 with 12:47 and may be the most underrated runner out there today.
He outkicked Gebrselassie last year in 26:39 and ran the last 100 meters in 12 seconds in that race. He has a great kick and the margin of victory for Bekele last year in Athens was large (4 seconds) only because when Sihine saw he would not catch him he eased off at the end.
I think if Sihine comes in PR shape (he ran 26:57 2 months ago and has good training since) he can win with the right tactics. He is as aerobically strong as Bekele is; the only question is if he can remain with him in the last 200m.
Watching him and Bekele racing, Sihine has a much easier looking stride. His leg does not kick up as high and he has a long stride merely based on the strength with which he pushed off the ground. Bekele has such a gigantic, fast stride that it is difficult to see where he can open it up. It already looks like he is sprinting throughout most of a 5,000m race.
I agree that he is the favorite but I do not think others can be discounted so quickly. Sihine is there and Dinkessa was very close to him earlier in the year.
2. Where is your runner Nicholas Kemboi? A phenomenal talent, one of the top 5 ever with 26:30 and he nearly beat Gebrselassie 2 years ago. But since then we have heard nothing of him and he is not on the WC team. Will he race again and what has happened to him?
3. I'm not sure why Songkok is the 5K favorite. He has very good speed but will be racing Gebremariam, Bekele, Kipchoge, and Chebii. Craig Mottram has also beaten him. He has a 3:30 1500 but Mottram just ran a 3:48 mile and Songkok is no stronger than any of the others. Bekele ran 12:40 this year and there is no chance Songkok can run that fast right now.
If it is a 13:00 race Bekele will be feeling much stronger (that is far off his PB) compared to Songkok who is still new at 5,000.
Bekele also ran a 200 during his 5K win in Lausanne 2 years ago in 23-point. He has AMAZING finishing speed and can outkick Songkok depending on the pace.
4. I am surprised Ezekiel Kemboi is named as a favorite because he has raced poorly this year. Shaheen will win easily but I hope to see him in the 5K as well. That would be a great double.