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DEFAR LEADS TOP WOMEN'S FIELD IN LONDON 5-K
By David Monti
(c) 2007 Race Results Weekly, all rights reserved
September 11, 2007

Reigning Olympic and world 5000m champion, Meseret Defar, leads a top-notch field at Sunday's Hydro Active Women's Challenge in London's Hyde Park, a 5 km road race.  The 23 year-old Ethiopian is also the world record holder for both 5000m on the track (14:16.63) and 5 km on the road (14:46).

"Naturally we are very pleased to have the world and Olympic 5000m champion Meseret Defar, fresh from her victory in Osaka heading up our elite field in London, the UK's premier 5-k women's road running event," said Dave Bedford who directs the race.  Bedford is also the race director of the Flora London Marathon.

Bedford has also invited a strong group of challengers to face Defar, led by Australia's Benita Johnson, America's Lauren Fleshman, Russia's Inge Abitova, and Britain's Jo Pavey and Liz Yelling.

This will be the tenth edition of the Challenge which organizers said had 20,000 entrants last year.  The course record of 14:51 was set by Paula Radcliffe in 2003.

The London race is just one of three Challenges which will be held in Britain on Sunday.  Separate races will also be held in Birmingham and Liverpool.  Tegla Loroupe of Kenya will lead the field in Birmingham, where she hopes to defend her title, while Karolina Jarzynska of Poland is the favorite to take the title in Liverpool.


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