Emma Coburn: "I think it’s important to look at history and look at what happened with Ruth [Jebet] and I do think a woman can run 8:45, but I don’t think a woman can run 8:45 when for a whole season she runs 9 minutes and then runs 8:45. I don’t think that’s really possible. I think 9 minutes is still the holy grail of women’s steeplechase and I think that’s a time — that right under 9 minutes athletes can run clean, so hopefully there’s enough of us to get near that."
When directly asked if she thought Chepkoech’s record was legitimate, Coburn said, “I shouldn’t comment because there is no proof to prove otherwise, but I think it’s important to look at trends and history of performances and where there’s big outliers we might need to pause.”
When Coburn was asked what her comments on Chepkoech meant for the sport she said, “It means you have Courtney Frerichs, Emma Coburn, Hyvin Kiyeng, you have women that are consistently flirting with 9 minutes, that have been running that time for a few years and are in my opinion doing it the right way. I think there’s heroes in the event. I think we can continue to push the boundaries. Like I said, I think running under 8:50 is possible. I just think we can look at what happened with Ruth and maybe pause for a sec[ond] about it.”
Full details and video of Coburn's comments at link below.