Olympic Champion Chepng'etich Pegged For Prefontaine Comeback

Jun 04 - by Mutwiri Mutuota for SportPesa News

New mother returns to action since taking a break to welcome her first born last year

Faith Chepng'etich in action at the Barcelona World Juniors. PHOTO/File

  • Chepng'etich who took a maternal break and welcomed her first born last year, will take on two-time Diamond Trophy winner Laura Muir of Great Britain and Shelby Houlihan of the US, last season's top metric miler
  • At the same time, organisers of Lausanne's Athletissima on July 5, the series' eighth stop, announced several entrants in their high-powered men's 1500m race headed by Kenya's Timothy Cheruiyot, the 2018 Diamond League champion
  • World indoor champion Andrew Pozzi from Great Britain, China's Xie Wenjun, the recently-minted Asian champion, and Pascal Martinot-Lagarde from France, the 2018 European champion

NAIROBI, Kenya- Rio 2016 Olympic women 1500m champion, Faith Chepng'etich Kipyegon will mark her anticipated return to elite circuit racing at the June 30 Prefontaine Classic Diamond League after organisers added the new mother to a loaded field.

Chepng'etich who took a maternal break and welcomed her first born last year, will take on two-time Diamond Trophy winner Laura Muir of Great Britain and Shelby Houlihan of the US, last season's top metric miler.

The field also includes current world leader Gudaf Tsegay of Ethiopia, who clocked 3:59.57 in Nanjing on May 21; Moroccan record-holder Rababe Arafi, the winner in Shanghai; 2018 IAAF Continental Cup winner Winny Chebet of Kenya.

Others in the tough line-up include; Ethiopia's Axumawit Embaye, the 2014 world indoor silver medallist and more recently the runner-up in Nanjing where she clocked a 4:00.17 lifetime best; Alemaz Samuel of Ethiopia, the 2018 world U20 champion; and 18-year-old Lemlem Hailu, the 2017 world U18 champion who last month raced to the Ethiopian senior title over the distance. 

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Hailu clocked 8:34.03 in the 3000m at the Diamond League opener in Doha last month, the fourth fastest U20 performance of all-time.

Solid start

At the same time, organisers of Lausanne's Athletissima on July 5, the series' eighth stop, announced several entrants in their high-powered men's 1500m race headed by Kenya's Timothy Cheruiyot, the 2018 Diamond League champion.

The 23-year-old has gotten off to a solid start, opening his season with a runner-up finish in Doha and a victory in Oslo last week.

World indoor 1500m record holder Samuel Tefera of Ethiopia will also race, along with Norwegian brother Jakob and Filip Ingebrigtsen. Jakob, who won't turn 19 until 19 September, famously raced to a 1500/5000m triumph at last summer's European Championships, opened his outdoor season with a third place finish in Oslo.

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Another strong battle looms in the men's 110m hurdles, where neutral athlete Sergey Shubenkov, last year’s winner in Lausanne, will take on Olympic silver medallist Orlando Ortega of Spain, the winner in Nanjing.

World indoor champion Andrew Pozzi from Great Britain, China's Xie Wenjun, the recently-minted Asian champion, and Pascal Martinot-Lagarde from France, the 2018 European champion.