Veteran athletics coach Kirwa tips Faith Kipyegon to further lower her own records during the Paris Olympics

Wednesday, July 10th, 2024 10:29 | By
National athletics coach Julius Kirwa stresses a point during a past function. PHOTO/ SPORTPICHA

Veteran athletics coach Julius Kirwa has tipped two-time Olympic champion and multiple world record holder Faith Kipyegon to further lower her own records at the Paris 2024 Olympic Games.

Kipyegon revised her own world record in the 1500m after she clocked 3:49.04 in what turned out to be one of the deepest races of all time, during the Meeting de Paris which is part of the Wanda Diamond League on Sunday, but according to Kirwa, the reigning Olympic and world champion who will be competing in two races at the Summer Games, is not yet done and will further lower the mark.

“She is definitely going to lower the mark further during the Olympics. If you noticed on Sunday, no one pushed her a lot, it was a relaxed race for her, there were no Ethiopians and other renown top athletes in the race, now when she will be facing the big girls in Paris, trust her to run faster and lower the mark further by a few seconds,” Kirwa told People Sport.

He added: “Faith is currently at her peak and we now want to change her training program slightly to ensure that we maintain her form. At the moment she has the right speed, muscles, endurance and timing, we will just polish her and not subject her to any rigorous training.”

Returning to the scene of her record-breaking mark over 5000m last year, Kipyegon broke her own world 1500m record in the final race of the evening.

Kipyegon kicked at the bell and opened up a gap over Hull, striding clear to win in 3:49.04, taking 0.07 off the world record she set last year in Florence. Hull finished second in 3:50.83, smashing her own Oceanian record to move to fifth on the world all-time list.

Laura Muir was third in a British record of 3:53.79, and for the first time ever, 12 women finished inside four minutes.

“I knew the world record was possible because I recently ran very fast in Kenya,” said Kipyegon, who clocked 3:53.98 at Kenya’s Olympic Trials. “I was coming here to just run my race and to see what shape I’m in to defend my title at the Olympics.”

Meanwhile, Kirwa who has been training middle and long distance athletes in Eldoret in preparations for the Olympic Games raised concerns with the type of training Beatrice Chepkoech was taking after she finished ninth in the women 3000m steeple chase at the Wanda Diamond league on Sunday, where she clocked a time of 9:27.21.

Kirwa said Chepkoech who won silver during last year’s World Championships in Budapest, Hungary, had been training alone in Nairobi and that it was high time she joined the other athletes in their high altitude training camp in Eldoret.

“I’m very concerned with Beatrice’s performance in France on Sunday where she finished 9th. She is a gold medal prospect at the Olympic Games and we must rectify this in the remaining few days.

She has been training in Nairobi, but is high time she join other athletes in our training camp in Eldoret for the remaining days. Jackline Chepkoech has been in the camp, but did not finish her race during the same event on Sunday, we will work with them and bring out their potential,” Kirwa said.

He added: “The mood at the camp is good, everyone is responding well to training and I can assure Kenyans that apart from Kipyegon we will witness other world records from this team during the Olympic Games. We currently alternate our training programs between Kipchoge Keino Stadium and the playing grounds at Moi University. We have also embedded legendary athletes like Ezekiel Kemboi and Brimin Kipruto to the camp to give motivational talks to the athletes.

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