Rabat Recap: Almaz Ayana’s World Record Attempt Comes Up Just Short (14:16.31), Caster Semenya Wins Again (1:56.64), Another WL for Conseslus Kipruto (8:02.77), and Pierre-Ambroise Bosse (1:44.51) Gets His First Career DL Win
The first-ever DL meet in Africa didn’t disappoint.
May 22, 2016
The Diamond League’s first trip to Africa was a successful one as there were world leaders in three of the four DL distance races at the 2016 Meeting International Mohammed VI d’Atlétisme in Rabat, Morocco. Ethiopia’s Almaz Ayana crushed everyone and just missed the world record in the women’s 5,000, clocking 14:16.31, while Kenya’s Conseslus Kipruto ran 8:02.77 to lower his world lead in the steeplechase and earn his second DL victory of the season. Caster Semenya also continued to excel in the women’s 800, pulling away from Francine Niyonsaba and making 1:56.64 (the fastest time in the world since 2012) look really, really easy.
In other action, Frenchman Pierre-Ambroise Bosse got his first career DL win in the 800, Jamaica’s Elaine Thompson ran 11.02 into a big headwind to take the women’s 100 and LaShawn Merritt kept his strong season going by claiming the men’s 400 in 44.66. We provide a full recap of the meet plus analysis below.
Women’s 5,000: Almaz Ayana Runs 14:16.31 World Leader as WR Attempt Comes Up Short
Until Almaz Ayana meets Genzebe Dibaba, she will only have one rival: the clock. The conditions in Rabat weren’t ideal for distance running as it was 70 degrees with 68% humidity and swirling winds (13 mph) in the stadium, and the 6:45 p.m. start time meant that the athletes had to run in the sun.
Yet even with the conditions working against her and a rabbit only taking her through 1600 (there are few women in the world who can hang with Ayana through 3000, let alone the entire 5000), Ayana blazed a world-leading 14:16.31 to win by a monstrous 13 seconds. The rest of the field benefitted as well as seven of the nine women wound up setting personal bests on the night.
The rabbits were prescribed world-record pace and they came through 1600 at right around that in 4:33 (WR pace is a hair under 4:32.4 per 1600). At that point, however, the final rabbit dropped out and Ayana would have to do the rest of the work on her own. Senbere Teferi, who was the runner-up at Worlds last year behind Ayana, was two meters back at that point (the only other woman close to Ayana), but within 200 meters that gap had ballooned to 10m and would only grow the rest of the way.
Ayana reached 3k in 8:32.33, 3200 in 9:06 and 3400 in 9:41; she needed to run her last 1600 in sub-4:30 to get Tirunesh Dibaba’s world record of 14:11.15. But she slowed to 70s over her next two laps, and with 800 to go (12:01), the world record seemed to be off the table. A 69-second lap followed, and though Ayana kicked it in over the final 400, closing in a 66, she wound up five seconds off the WR in 14:16.31 in a truly dominant display.
A slew of personal bests followed as Viola Kibiwot became just the second Kenyan (after Vivian Cheruiyot) to break 14:30, running 14:29.50, Teferi sliced a second off her best to run 14:35.09 in third and Kenya’s Janet Kisa (14:52.59 to 14:38.70) and Ethiopia’s Ababel Yeshaneh (15:17.05 to 14:41.58) got massive PRs in fourth and fifth.
1 Ayana , Almaz ETH 14:16.31 10 2 Kibiwot , Viola Jelagat KEN 14:29.50 6 3 Teferi , Senbere ETH 14:35.09 4 4 Kisa , Janet KEN 14:38.70 3 5 Yeshaneh , Ababel ETH 14:41.58 2 6 Heroye , Alemitu ETH 14:43.58 1 7 Bahta , Meraf SWE 14:49.95 8 Lewetegn , Sentayehu ETH 15:06.49 9 Kudzelich , Sviatlana BLR 15:50.57 Wafula , Lydia Nasimiyu KEN DNF Plis , Renata POL DNF
Quick Take #1: Ayana wants the WR, says “wind was too disturbing today”; reveals she wants to attempt 5k/10k double in Rio
“I feel disappointed because I wanted to break the world record,” Ayana told the IAAF afterwards. “However the wind was too disturbing today. I am sure that I can break the record in one of my next races this year. In the Olympics, I am aiming to compete in both the 5000m and 10,000m.”
Quick Take #2: Ayana and Genzebe Dibaba need to race in a proper WR attempt sometime this year
Ayana is clearly in world-record shape right now and the only other woman capable of beating her is Genzebe Dibaba, who did just that over 5,000 meters in Paris last summer. That race was billed as a WR attempt but miscommunication over alternating laps led the pace to slow, with Dibaba winning in “only” 14:15.
Tirunesh Dibaba’s 5,000 WR is there for the taking, and Ayana could certainly get it without Dibaba in the field. Run the race at night with no wind, get adidas (Ayana’s sponsor) to shell out some big dough to get someone fast to pace her through 3,000 and Ayana should be able to do run 14:11.14 or faster.
Obviously it would be way more exciting to see two athletes chase the world record in the same race (Hicham El Guerrouj and Noah Ngeny’s duel for the mile WR in 1999 was unforgettable) but if Ayana and Dibaba are going to go after it together, they will likely have to wait until after the Olympics (though it would not be inconceivable for the front-running Ayana to pursue it in the Olympic final). Dibaba has already committed to WR attempts in the mile (on June 9 in Oslo) and 1500 (June 16 in Stockholm) plus she’s running the 3,000 in Monaco on July 15. There’s no women’s 5000 on the schedule in London (the final DL event before the Olympics) and even if there were, Dibaba may not want to add another race to her schedule.
Let’s just hope that, for the good of the sport, Ayana and Dibaba can come together and make a proper 5,000 WR attempt at some point. Yes, both women are still young (Ayana is 24, Dibaba 25), but nothing in the future is certain. It would be a shame if two of the fastest 5,000 runners of all time don’t take a crack at the WR in their prime this year.
How about next weekend? It’s a shame Ayana, an adidas-sponsored athlete, isn’t going to go for the WR in Eugene next weekend in the 5000 against Genzebe Dibaba at Nike’s Pre Classic.
Quick Take #3: The Ethiopian selectors could be in a pickle when deciding the women’s 10,000 team
Meseret Defar and Tirunesh Dibaba (who ran 31:16 on the roads on Sunday in her first race in two years) have already announced that they intend to pursue the 10,000 in Rio; now Ayana has joined them. Add in last year’s WC silver medallist Gelete Burka and Genzebe Dibaba, who has suggested she may try the 5k/10k double in Rio, and that’s five studs for three spots. It makes the most sense to hold a Trials, but it remains to be seen whether that will happen. But picking the team off of straight season bests will be tough considering there are so few world-class 10,000s these days.
Women’s 800: Caster Semenya Crushes Everyone Again, Runs World’s Fastest Time Since 2012
The battle between 2016 world leader Caster Semenya of South Africa and 2016 World Indoor champ Francine Niyonsaba of Burundi and the Oregon Track Club went exactly as we thought it would.
The two women were the class of the field. Niyonsaba kept it close for about 725 meters but Semenya pulled away and dominated the final 75 meters to win in 1:56.64 to Niyonsaba’s 1:57.74. 2013 world champion Eunice Sum looked totally outclassed after this one and was just fourth in 1:59.32.
Niyonsaba led Semenya at the bell (roughly 57 flat as the rabbit was 56.70) and at 600 (1:27.92) but there was no stopping Semenya over the final 200 as she picked it up a lot and slammed it home.
After the race, Semenya said she’s got more to come.
“What you see here is the outcome of the training. Of course, it gives a strong morale boost to beat a strong field like this one. I need to keep working hard in training now and then there is more to come,” said Semenya.
1 Semenya , Caster RSA 1:56.64 10 2 Niyonsaba , Francine BDI 1:57.74 6 3 Lamote , Renelle FRA 1:58.84 4 4 Sum , Eunice Jepkoech KEN 1:59.32 3 5 Sharp , Lynsey GBR 1:59.51 2 6 Alemu , Habitam ETH 1:59.70 1 7 Akkaoui , Malika MAR 2:01.11 8 Arzamasova , Marina BLR 2:01.49 9 Oskan-Clarke , Shelayna GBR 2:01.65 10 Józwik , Joanna POL 2:02.82 11 Ennaoui , Sofia POL 2:05.13 Hilali , Siham MAR DNF Tkachuk , Anastasiia UKR DNF
Quick Thought #1: We’ll repeat what we said in our preview. Unless the Court of Arbitration for Sport changes its views on hyperandrogenism, we don’t think anyone is going to stop Semenya or Niyonsaba.
These two ladies have shown they capable of running in the 1:56 range (or faster) and no one else in the world has shown they are capable of that. 2015 world champ Marina Arzamasova has a pb of 1:57.54 and 2013 world champ Eunice Sum has a pb of 1:56.99.
If it wasn’t for doper Mariya Savinova, Semenya would be a two-time world and one-time Olympic champion. The commentators on the international broadcast basically handed the gold medal to Semenya today. We aren’t willing to do that as Niyonsaba is quite good. She ran 1:56 as a 19-year-old in 2012 and repeated it in 2013.
Niyonsaba certainly isn’t handing the gold to Semenya as she told the IAAF after the race, “It was an opportunity to test my performance and level. I feel confident and I am willing to win the Olympic Games in Rio.”
Fastest Women’s 800 Performances Since 2009
- 1:55.45 Caster Semenya RSA 07.01.91 1 Berlin 19.08.2009
- 1:55.87 Mariya Savinova RUS 13.08.85 1 Daegu 04.09.2011
- 1:56.35 Caster Semenya RSA 07.01.91 2 Daegu 04.09.2011
- 1:56.19 Mariya Savinova RUS 13.08.85 1 London 11.08.2012
- 1:56.59 Francine Niyonsaba BDI 05.05.93 1 Bruxelles 07.09.2012
- 1:56.64 Caster Semenya RSA 07.01.91 1 Rabat 22.05.2016
- 1:56.72 Caster Semenya RSA 07.01.91 1 Bambous 31.07.2009
- 1:56.72 Francine Niyonsaba BDI 05.05.93 1 Eugene 01.06.2013
Men’s 3000 Steeplechase: Conseslus Kipruto Smokes Jairus Birech Over Last Lap to Win in World-Leading 8:02
World Championship silver medallist Conseslus Kipruto picked up his second straight DL win and second straight world leader as he won the men’s steeple in 8:02.77 today, ahead of our #1 ranked steepler for 2015, Jairus Birech, who was second in 8:03.90. France’s Mahiedine Mekhissi-Benabbad, the silver medallist at the last two Olympics, was a total non-factor in his first race since 2014 and ended up a DNF.
The results up front were just the same as they were in Doha but this race was much more competitive as Birech didn’t get gapped by Kipruto early like he did in Doha.
Kipruto and Birech did gap everyone else in this field by 1k in this one. And for good reason: the split was 2:36.34! It slowed over the next 1k (5:17.72 at 2k) and would continue to slow until the last lap.
At the bell (7:00ish), a sub-8:00 clocking was in doubt. As they came off the penultimate turn, Kipruto turned on the jets and he instantly gapped Birech. With 200 to go, it was clear this baby was over barring a fall. After successfully getting over the final water jump, Kipruto decided to celebrate the first Diamond League victory on African soil by an African runner rather than go all-out for his first career sub-8:00 or pb (his pb is 8:01.13).
“I started celebrating entering the straight and I didn’t sprint anymore because there are more races to come. I want to go faster and faster and reach my best level at the Kenyan trials and in the Olympics,” said Kipruto.
1 Kipruto , Conseslus KEN 8:02.77 10 2 Birech , Jairus Kipchoge KEN 8:03.90 6 3 Koech , Paul Kipsiele KEN 8:12.33 4 4 Kipsang , Lawrence Kemboi KEN 8:17.82 3 5 Kowal , Yoann FRA 8:18.48 2 6 Ezzine , Hamid MAR 8:19.31 1 7 Seboka , Tafese ETH 8:20.41 8 Kimutai , Clement Kemboi KEN 8:21.46 9 Chatbi , Jamel ITA 8:21.92 10 Elbakkali , Soufiane MAR 8:22.66 11 Bett , Nicholas Kiptonui KEN 8:29.21 12 Merzougui , Abdelaziz ESP 8:30.64 13 Chemlal , Jaouad MAR 8:31.87 14 Nganga , Bernard Mbugua KEN 8:37.52 15 Kniya , Younes MAR 8:37.99 16 D'Hoedt , Jeroen BEL 8:50.69 Mekhissi , Mahiedine FRA DNF
Quick Though #1: This race was both good and bad for Evan Jager.
Mekhissi-Benabbad’s DNF was a huge boost to Jager’s medal hopes as Mekhissi-Benabbad is a proven championship racer. At the Olympics this year, the Kenyans will only get three entrants as compared to the four they got at Worlds last year but if you added back in Mekhissi-Benabbad, who wasn’t at Worlds last year, then it would be a wash. But if you take out a Kenyan and Mekhissi-Benabbad is a non-factor then a medal may become really a matter of just beating one Kenyan.
The bad news for Jager is that Kipruto looks to be in PR shape and Birech is clearly moving in the right direction as he was a lot better today than two weeks ago. Two weeks ago, Birech was dropped when 2k was hit in 5:20. Today he was right there until the final 300 despite a faster pace.
Birech admitted after the race that he was surprised by his own performance. “This was my season’s best, which I didn’t expect due to the problem I had which didn’t affect my performance as I thought they would,” said Birech.
Men’s 800: Pierre-Ambroise Bosse Runs a Brilliant Race to Earn First Career DL Win in Commanding Fashion
France’s Pierre-Ambroise Bosse, who was fifth at Worlds last year, earned his first career Diamond League victory, running patiently over the first 600 meters before exploding over the final 200 to win in 1:44.51. 2012 Olympic 1500 champ Taoufik Makhloufi was second in 1:44.91 while Nijel Amos had nothing over the final 100 and faded from second to sixth.
No one went with rabbit Edwin Meli in the early stages, and at 400 meters (51.17 for Meli), he had a gap of about eight meters on Moroccans Amine El Manaoui and Abdelatif Elguesse. Bosse sat waiting on the outside in the middle of the pack.
Amos made the first serious move of the race into the lead at 500 meters, but he couldn’t drop anyone; it was Bosse’s attack at 600 (1:17.19) that really strung out the field and he quickly gained a gap of a couple of meters over Amos and Makhloufi with 2015 Worlds bronze medallist Amel Tuka moving up into fourth place coming off the final turn. With 100 to go, Bosse began to power away and midway down the home stretch, it was obvious he was going to take the win. Makhloufi managed to close the gap slightly over the final 50 but was forced to settle for second; Amos had absolutely nothing over the final 100 and slipped from second to sixth in 1:47.34.
1 Bosse , Pierre-Ambroise FRA 1:44.51 10 2 Makhloufi , Taoufik ALG 1:44.91 6 3 Tuka , Amel BIH 1:45.41 4 4 Lewandowski , Marcin POL 1:45.76 3 5 El Guesse , Abdelati MAR 1:46.80 2 6 Amos , Nijel BOT 1:47.34 1 7 El Manaoui , Amine MAR 1:48.83 8 Hairane , Jamal QAT 1:50.58 Melly , Edwin Kiplagat KEN DNF
Quick Take #1: An impressive run from Bosse, who ran a tactically smart race
Bosse defeated a solid field today (even though 2015 Worlds silver medallist Adam Kszczot was a pre-race scratch) and he did so convincingly. And though 1:44.51 isn’t a super fast time, the way Bosse (whose pb is 1:42.53 from two years ago) ran it suggests that he’s capable of a lot more right now. Rather than attack the race from the front, Bosse was willing to run a little extra distance early by staying on the outside of lane 1/inside of lane 2, positioning himself well to move when he felt the time was right. When he did strike, with 200 to go, it was decisive and he put away some very good runners early.
Bosse often will go out at or near the front of races, but he tried out a more patient approach today and it worked out for him. Perhaps he will lean on that tactic more in the future.
“I didn’t want to place myself right behind the pacemaker as I would have done in the past,” Bosse told the IAAF. “Patience and clarity of thinking were the keywords of my race today. I didn’t want to [be] beaten on my tactics.”
Quick Take #2: An absolute stinker from Nijel Amos in his outdoor 800 debut
Amos, with his awkward, arms-flailing running form, never looks comfortable, but his final 100 today was downright ugly. Second with 100 to go, Makhloufi put over two seconds on him in the home straight as Amos finished way back in sixth in 1:47.34. It was his slowest time ever in a Diamond League race and his slowest in a non-championship race since his season opener in 2014, when he ran 1:48.84 in South Africa (a race he won). It will take more than one bad race for us to count Amos out from defending his Olympic silver from four years ago, but he can’t afford many more efforts like this one.
Men’s 3000: Abdelaati Iguider Puts On a Show For the Home Fans
Native son Abdelaati Iguider of Morocco took the victory in the non-DL men’s 3000 to the delight of the screaming Rabat fans. The crowd was never as loud today as they were during the final lap when Iguider held the lead and they delighted in celebration as his victory, throwing him a Moroccan flag and mobbing him when he approached the stands.
The field, led by Azerbaijan’s Hayle Ibrahimov, hit 1600 in 4:07 as Iguider sat on his shoulder with Ethiopia’s Dejene Debela in third. With 800 to go, Ibrahimov continued to lead a big pack; Iguider looked incredibly comfortable in second.
At the bell, Iguider made his move as the crowd roared its approval, taking the lead as he, Ibrahimov and Spain’s Adel Mechaal had separated from everyone else. Iguider had a gap by the home stretch, but Ibrahimov wasn’t finished and tried to claw back the deficit. Iguider had plenty left, however, and as soon as he felt Ibrahimov coming with 80 to go, surged again and blew his rival away, clocking a world-leading 7:36.85.
1 Iguider , Abdalaati MAR 7:36.85 2 Ibrahimov , Hayle AZE 7:37.76 3 Mechaal , Adel ESP 7:39.51 4 Kipkoech , John Chepkwony KEN 7:42.69 5 Debela , Dejene ETH 7:44.96 6 Maiyo , Hillary Kipkorir KEN 7:45.62 7 Aouad , Zouhair BRN 7:48.18 8 Bouqantar , Soufiyan MAR 7:49.17 9 Ayele , Abayneh ETH 7:49.34 10 Kipsang , Emmanuel Kiprono KEN 7:49.56 11 St.Lawrence , Ben AUS 7:51.36 12 Gashahun , Abe ETH 8:03.00 Barusei , Geoffrey Kibet KEN DNF Kombich , Ismael Kipngetich KEN DNF
Quick Take #1: An expected victory for the home favorite
Like Mo Farah when he races in the UK, this field seemed set up for Iguider, last year’s world bronze medallist at 1500, to deliver a victory and he didn’t disappoint. We didn’t learn much about his current fitness from this effort, but the crowd won’t care about that as they were clearly pleased to see a Moroccan, any Moroccan, take a victory here.
“The race was good, especially with the warm crowd,” Iguider told the IAAF. “Although it’s not my specialty, I did well. My goal was to make the audience happy.”
Men’s 1500: Silas Kiplagat Beaten by Countryman Timothy Cheruiyot
In the non-Diamond League men’s 1500, Kenya’s Timothy Cheruiyot, who was 7th at Worlds last year, remained undefeated on the year as he won in 3:33.61, just ahead of Silas Kiplagat 3:33.68.
26-year-old Aussie Ryan Gregson, who picked up the Olympic standard in the Netherlands with a 3:35.78 earlier this week, was third in 3:34.43, the third-best clocking in his life and his best time since he ran 3:33.92 in Doha in 2012.
“I did not expect to win this race today. It was pretty fast, this is a good beginning for me,” said Cheruiyot after the race. “I went in the lead early and I knew Silas was on my shoulder, so I had to keep going fast. The sprint was tough but I won it. This gives me confidence.”
1 Cheruiyot , Timothy KEN 3:33.61 2 Kiplagat , Silas KEN 3:33.68 3 Gregson , Ryan AUS 3:34.43 4 Elkaam , Fouad MAR 3:34.96 5 Tesfaye , Homiyu GER 3:35.05 6 Carvalho , Florian FRA 3:36.64 7 Wolde , Dawit ETH 3:36.96 8 Hlaselo , Dumisane RSA 3:37.73 9 Essalhi , Younés MAR 3:37.94 10 Ali , Musaab Adam QAT 3:38.04 11 Moukrime , Tarik BEL 3:38.86 12 Amdouni , Morhad FRA 3:39.32 13 Keddar , Salim ALG 3:39.61 14 Moustaoui , Mohamed MAR 3:40.83 15 Nabil , Oussama MAR 3:42.90 16 Alonso , Carlos ESP 3:43.92 Beriami , Adil MAR DNF Bett , Reuben KEN DNF
Women’s 3000 steeple: Diro Neda Takes It In Her Fastest Time in Almost Four Years
Ethiopia’s Etenesh Diro Neda, who went out in the heats at Worlds last year, took the win in this non-DL event, running 9:16.87, the #2 time of her career and fastest since August 2012. She finished almost 10 seconds up on second placer Gladys Kipkemoi of Kenya (who was hampered by a fall with two laps to go), while rabbit Caroline Tuigong hung in the race to finish third in a pb of 9:28.81. Former Florida runner Genevieve LaCaze was fourth in a new pb of 9:32.67.
— Genevieve LaCaze (@GenGen_LaCaze) May 22, 2016
3000 Metres Steeplechase - Women 1 Diro , Etenesh ETH 9:16.87 2 Kipkemoi , Gladys Jerotich KEN 9:26.36 3 Tuigong , Caroline Chepkurui KEN 9:28.81 4 LaCaze , Genevieve AUS 9:32.67 5 Adamu , Birtukan ETH 9:35.97 6 Ansa , Weynshet ETH 9:41.74 7 Sidi Madane , Fadwa MAR 9:51.68 8 Claude-Boxberger , Ophélie FRA 9:58.49 9 Danois , Maeva FRA 9:59.97 García , Elena ESP DNF
Women’s 100: Jamaica’s Elaine Thompson Runs 11.02 into Big Headwind
Jamaica’s Kerron Stewart got a great start and held the lead for the first half of the race, but the second half was all Elaine Thompson as the 2016 World Indoor 60-meter bronze medallist stormed away from the field to win in 11.02 despite a 1.3 m/s headwind. Thompson ran 10.71 two weeks ago with an illegal tailwind (2.4) so she should be able to go well under 11 seconds legally if the wind cooperates in her next meet.
1 Thompson , Elaine JAM 11.02 10 2 Okagbare , Blessing NGR 11.11 6 3 Stewart , Kerron JAM 11.19 4 4 Horn , Carina RSA 11.28 3 5 Jeter , Carmelita USA 11.32 2 6 Anderson , Alexandria USA 11.45 1 7 Kambundji , Mujinga SUI 11.45 8 Okparaebo , Ezinne NOR 11.46
Men’s 110 Hurdles: David Oliver Wins in Season-Best 13.12
Cuban-turned-Spaniard Orlando Ortega got the best start but 2013 world champ David Oliver moved up to challenge him as the race progressed and they were close to even over the final few hurdles. Oliver finally gained some separation over the last hurdle and beat out Ortega, 13.12 to 13.13. The time was an improvement on Oliver’s 13.16 sb from Doha two weeks ago and now ties him with Ortega at #3 in the world this year (Jamaica’s Omar McLeod remains the only man to have broken 13.00 in 2016).
1 Oliver , David USA 13.12 10 2 Ortega , Orlando ESP 13.13 6 3 Alkana , Antonio RSA 13.28 4 4 Douvalídis , Konstadínos GRE 13.38 3 5 Cabral , Johnathan CAN 13.42 2 6 Richardson , Jason USA 13.54 1 7 de Oliveira , João Vitor BRA 13.90 Contreras , Yidiel ESP DNF
Men’s 400: Merritt Wins as Makwala Runs Out of Gas
Botswana’s Isaac Makwala had a huge lead coming off the final turn but he tied up big time and faded all the way to third as LaShawn Merritt got the win in 44.66 to Makwala’s 45.26 in the battle between the 6th- and 7th-fastest men in history. Former FSU runner Kevin Borlée grabbed second in 45.26.
“I knew they were going to take it out very fast but I did my job and came through in the final stages,” said Merritt, who will run the Pre Classic next week.
1 Merritt , LaShawn USA 44.66 10 2 Borlée , Kévin BEL 45.26 6 3 Makwala , Isaac BOT 45.38 4 4 Brown , Chris BAH 45.75 3 5 Brenes , Nery CRC 45.78 2 6 Yousif , Rabah GBR 45.90 1 7 McDonald , Rusheen JAM 46.79 8 Borlée , Jonathan BEL 46.81
Men’s 200: Panama’s Alonso Edward Runs a Windy 20.07 to Defeat a Weak Field
Most of the world’s top sprinters totally ignore the 200 on the Diamond League circuit, which has paved the way for Edward to win two straight DL titles. He picked up his first DL win of 2016 by running a good final 100 to pull away comfortably and win in a wind-aided 20.07 (3.8 m/s wind).
Brunto Hortelano-Roig, the Spanish national record holder at 200 (20.47) who dominated the Ivy League for Cornell while LetsRun.com’s Robert Johnson was coaching there, ran a good bend. He may have even had the lead coming off the turn and held second for most of the race but was just nipped at the line by the Ivory Coast’s Wilfried Koffi, 20.35 to 20.36.
— LetsRun.com (@letsrundotcom) May 22, 2016
1 Edward , Alonso PAN 20.07 10 2 Koffi , Hua Wilfried CIV 20.35 6 3 Hortelano , Bruno ESP 20.36 4 4 Herrera , José Carlos MEX 20.55 3 5 Mohammed , Abdullah Abkar KSA 20.93 2 6 Ouhadi , Aziz MAR 20.96 1 7 Smellie , Gavin CAN 20.97 8 Griffith , Adrian BAH 21.32
Women’s 400 Hurdles: Janieve Russell PRs to Win
22-year-old Janieve Russell of Jamaica, who was 5th at Worlds last year, came in as the top seed and #3 performer in the world at 54.61 and she improved on that and ran a stellar 54.16, a new pb (her pb was 54.61) that moves her to #2 in the world.
We predict that Russell will go faster as she chopped her steps a lot on the last hurdle but still won easily as she led from start to finish. American Cassandra Tate, the bronze medallist in Beijing last year, moved up late to nab second in a new seasonal best of 54.69 (previous sb was 55.57).
After the race, Russell said she wasn’t “concentrating on running a fast time” – she just wanted to win, but added that the windy weather didn’t bother her as it’s the kind of weather she’s used to in Jamaica.
1 Russell , Janieve JAM 54.16 10 2 Tate , Cassandra USA 54.69 6 3 Nel , Wenda RSA 54.88 4 4 Titimets , Anna UKR 55.10 3 5 Adekoya , Oluwakemi BRN 55.33 2 6 Ankiewicz , Emilia POL 57.25 1 Lambarki , Hayat MAR DNS
Men’s High Jump: 2013 World Champ Bohdan Bondarenko Wins It
The Ukrainian Bondarenko followed up his win in Shanghai last weekend with another victory in Rabat tonight, defeating a quality field as he was the only man to clear 2.31m. Erik Kynard, who won the DL opener in Doha, looked good as he cleared every height through 2.28 on his first attempt, but he missed all three of his tries at 2.31, relegating him to second. World Indoor champ Gianmarco Tamberi of Italy really struggled as it took him three attempts to clear 2.25; he would not clear another height, settling for sixth.
1 Bondarenko , Bohdan UKR 2.31 10 2 Kynard , Erik USA 2.28 6 3 Baniótis , Konstadínos GRE 2.25 4 3 Rivera , Edgar MEX 2.25 4 5 Grabarz , Robert GBR 2.25 2 6 Tamberi , Gianmarco ITA 2.25 1 7 Fassinotti , Marco ITA 2.20 8 Bába , Jaroslav CZE 2.20 9 Thomas , Donald BAH 2.20 Nabokau , Dzmitry BLR NM
Men’s Long Jump: South Africa’s Rushwal Samaai Takes Down Australian WC Silver Medallist Fabrice Lapierre
24-year-old Rushwal Samaai of South Africa, coming in the world’s second longest jumper on the year at 8.34m, was the best man today as he won with in a new pb of 8.38m (27′ 6″). He needed to PR as the runner-up was Aussie Fabrice Lapierre, the silver medallist at Worlds last year, in 8.36m.
2016 world leader and Buffalo Bills receiver Marquise Goodwin, who jumped 8.45m last week, was third in 8.11m. We loved his outfit though.
“This is the best competition that I have ever been in. Everything was amazing, the new track is also very good. My technique worked well and my run up is getting better,” said Samaai after the competition.
1 Samaai , Rushwal RSA 8.38 10 +0.8 2 Lapierre , Fabrice AUS 8.36 6 +5.2 3 Goodwin , Marquise USA 8.11 4 +0.8 4 Bramble , Daniel GBR 8.00 3 +1.4 5 Lasa , Emiliano URU 7.95 2 +0.6 6 Smith , Tyrone BER 7.90 1 +0.5 7 da Silva , Mauro Vinicius BRA 7.87 +3.8 8 Khoua , Mouhcine MAR 7.80 +0.7 9 Cáceres , Eusebio ESP 7.73 +1.9 10 Jaszczuk , Tomasz POL 7.67 +0.4
Women’s Triple Jump: Ibarguen Wins Her 33rd In A Row
Colombia’s Caterine Ibarguen extended her win streak to 33 (she hasn’t lost since the 2012 Olympics) with a 14.51 mark (47′ 7¼”). In Doha, Ibarguen was pushed to a 15.04 by World Indoor champ Yulimar Rojas, who jumped 14.79, but Rojas only managed a 14.11 today which got her 4th. Ibarguen’s 14.38 1st-round mark was better than what anyone else in the field put up as indoor bronze medallist Paraskeví Papachrístou of Greece was second in 14.28.
1 Ibargüen , Caterine COL 14.51 10 -0.4 2 Papahrístou , Paraskeví GRE 14.28 6 -0.4 3 Mamona , Patrícia POR 14.13 4 -0.5 4 Rojas , Yulimar VEN 14.11 3 -0.6 5 Costa , Susana POR 13.90 2 +3.5 6 Ptashkina , Tetyana UKR 13.33 1 -1.5 7 Mbumi Nkouindjin , Joelle SandrinCMR 13.24 +1.4
Women’s Pole Vault: Ekaterini Stefanidi Wins in a PB
Greece’s Ekateríni Stefanídi, the World Indoor bronze medallist, got the win in a new pb of 4.75m (15′ 7″, previous pb of 4.73m). She had no misses up to that point but failed to get over 4.80m. The runner-up was Swiss national record holder Nicole Büchler.
1 Stefanídi , Ekateríni GRE 4.75 10 2 Büchler , Nicole SUI 4.70 6 3 Silva , Yarisley CUB 4.50 4 4 Kyriakopoúlou , Nikoléta GRE 4.50 3 5 Ryzih , Lisa GER 4.50 2 6 Kramer , Regine GER 4.30 1
Men’s Discus: World Champ Piotr Malachowski Leads a Polish 1-2
Malachowski took the lead in the third round with a throw of 65.91 and bettered that twice, going 66.88 in round four and 67.45 in round six. Though the wind presented a challenge, it was still good enough for his second DL win in the year, following up on his victory in Doha.
“Wind is very difficult for the discus throw,” Malachowski told the IAAF. “I had to change my way of throwing but still the result is not bad at all.”
1 Malachowski , Piotr POL 67.45 10 2 Urbanek , Robert POL 65.04 6 3 Kövágó , Zoltán HUN 64.42 4 4 Milanov , Philip BEL 63.74 3 5 Parellis , Apostolos CYP 63.46 2 6 Kupper , Martin EST 63.13 1 7 Ståhl , Daniel SWE 61.09 8 Kanter , Gerd EST 60.70
Women’s Shot Put: Valerie Adams Dominates
Two-time Olympic champ Valerie Adams grabbed her first Diamond League victory of 2016 (and 24th overall) by launching her fifth throw 19.68 meters. All six of her throws would have won the competition; five of six were 19.20m or farther. Adams has now won all four of her competitions outdoors, improving her winning mark each time (though she was only third at World Indoors):
February 23 (Auckland): 18.85m
March 6 (Dunedin): 19.43m
May 7 (Zug): 19.52m
May 22 (Rabat): 19.68m
1 Adams , Valerie NZL 19.68 10 2 Márton , Anita HUN 18.51 6 3 Smith , Brittany USA 17.84 4 4 Guba , Paulina POL 17.74 3 5 Abramchuk , Alena BLR 17.53 2 6 Ducó , Natalia CHI 17.21 1 7 Dongmo , Auriole CMR 16.81
Women’s Javelin: Latvia’s Madara Palameika Takes It
Palameika fouled her final two throws, but her 64.76-meter effort in the third round was enough as Estonia’s Liina Laasma set a national record of 63.65 in second.
1 Palameika , Madara LAT 64.76 10 2 Laasma , Liina EST 63.65 6 3 Mitchell , Kathryn AUS 60.68 4 4 Muze , Lina LAT 59.54 3 5 Ratej , Martina SLO 59.39 2 6 Hjálmsdóttir , Ásdís ISL 57.02 1 7 Hatsko-Fedusova , Hanna UKR 55.72 8 Jelaca , Tatjana SRB 46.61
Talk about the meet on our fan forum / messageaboard: MB: The Diamond League goes to Africa – Official 2016 Rabat Discussion Thread.