Athletics Briefs: Dibaba up for PreClassics, Mutola sees Semenya smashing World Record soon...and more
Double Olympic Champion Tirunesh Dibaba of Ethiopia has been added to the women’s 10,000m
at the 38th Prefontaine Classic on June 1, named in honour of the late Geoff Hollister.
The entry list shows it will be like Ethiopian women trials for Olympics, with her team-mates Sule Utura, Wude Ayalew, Belaynesh Oljira, Tigist Kiros, Aheza Kiros, Worknesh Kidane and Aberu Kebede also in the race. Already PreClassic will host the Kenya’s Olympic trials selection race in the men’s 10,000 metres. Kenyans in the competition will be Pauline Korikwiang, Lineth Chepkurui, Lucy Kabuu, Pauline Njeri and Margaret Wangari.
JOHANNESBURG (RSA): Legendary 800m world champion Maria Mutola has predicted her new protege Caster Semenya can smash the women‘s 800m world record. Mutola said Semenya would have smashed the women‘s 800m world record had it not been for the gender controversy which erupted after her world title win at Berlin in 2009. "She ran 1min 55.45 when she was 18" Mutola, who won Mozambique‘s first Olympic gold when she won the 800m in Sydney, told South Africa‘s Sunday Times newspaper. "If there wasn‘t that (gender) problem she had there, she probably would have been 1:51, 1:52 right now."
CAPETOWN (RSA): When George Ntshiliza won the Old Mutual Two Oceans Marathon last Easter, he became the first South African since 2007 to do so. If he can win again this Saturday, he will become the first South African since Zithulele Sinqe in 1997 to repeat. The Cape Town race over a gruelling 56 km route will be held for the 43rd time, while the accompanying half-marathon sees its 15th running (the race always occurs on the Saturday before Easter). The half-marathon, the largest in the country, has again broken all entry records, with just over 16,000 runners entered. The ultramarathon has just over 9000 entrants. For the first time in the event’s history the top ten men and women in both the ultramarathon and half-marathon will be tested for prohibited substances by Drug Free Sport SA.
In previous years random testing of the top ten was done. In addition to Ntshiliza, the other nine gold medalists (top-10 finishers) of 2011 have all entered again, informs Race Results Weekly.
[Thanks to Alfonz Juck/EME News for Additional information.]