Obiri, Korir, Manangoi crack world leads in Monaco

Kenyans Olympic 5,000m silver medallist Hellen Obiri, Emmanuel Korir and World 1,500m silver medallist Elijah Manangoi on Friday night cracked world leads when they won their respective races in Monaco.

Obiri, the 2012 World Indoor 3,000m champion, took off with three laps to go, winning her 3,000m race in 8 minutes and 23.14 seconds, her third victory of the season.

Obiri, who won the 5,000m in a personal best and world lead of 14:22.47 in Shanghai before smashing the National Record (14:18.37) in Rome, carried along compatriot and steeplechase specialist Beatrice Chepkoech, who returned a personal best of 8:28.66 as Briton Laura Muir came in third also in a PB of 8:30.64.

Other Kenyans World Cross Country bronze medallist Lilian Kasait and 2015 World Cross Country champion Agnes Jebet finished fifth and seventh in a PB 8:32.73 and 8:35.37 respectively.

The night also belong to World Championships-bound Korir, who cruised to a huge performance, taking the World Lead of  1:43.10 in 800m but the race didn’t count for the Diamond League.

Behind USA-based Korir was his Canadian opponent Brandon McBride, who improved his season best to 1:44.41, followed by Burundian Antoine Gakeme in 1:44.54.

Manangoi, the winner in Doha, ploughed a World Lead and established a new personal best with a performance of 3:28.’80 as he led a 1-2-3 sweep by Kenyans.

Just behind him were World Championships teammates Timothy Cheruiyot, who also improved his personal best to 3:29.10 followed by Commonwealth 1,500m silver medallist Ronald Kwemoi in 3:32.34.

Cheruiyot won the 1,500m race in Stockholm while Kwemoi went for the Bowerman Mile crown in Eugene.

World 1,500m champion Asbel Kiprop from Kenya settled 11th in 3:34.91.

It was not a good day for Kenyans in men’s 3,000m steeplechase and women’s 800m.

American Evan Jager just ran an amazing 3000m steeplechase race, winning in a World Lead time of 8:01.29, beating Kenya’s 2015 Diamond League Series

winner Jairus Birech, who brought in a season’s best of 8:07.68. The women’s 800m race returned not only a Diamond League Record but also a National Record by Olympic and World 800m champion Caster Semenya from South Africa.

Semenya, who is undefeated this season, brought her victories to four in 1:55.27 with Burundian Olympic 800m silver medallist Francine Niyonsaba and Ajee Wilson pushing her to return National Records of 1:55.47 and 1:55.61 respectively.

Sifan Hassan from the Netherlands followed in a Personal Best of 1:56.81 as Canadian Melissa Bishop also finished in yet another National Record of 1:57.01.

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