Valencia, Spain – Kenya’s Abraham Kiptum broke the men’s world record* at the Medio Maratón de Valencia Trinidad Alfonso on Sunday (28), clocking 58:18 at the IAAF Gold Label road race to take five seconds off the mark set by Eritrea’s Zersenay Tadese in 2010.
On a perfect day for distance running, the 15-man lead pack went through the first 10 kilometres in 28:02. Shortly afterwards the long-legged Kiptum broke away from the rest of the pack and his 15-kilometre split of 41:40 – just seven seconds slower than Tadese’s equivalent split from his world record run – suggested that Kiptum was on course to break his PB of 59:09 set six weeks ago in Copenhagen.
Having covered the second 10-kilometre section in 27:16, Kiptum strode home in 58:18 to break the world record by five seconds.
“I can’t believe it, I’m over the moon,” said 29-year-old Kiptum. “Obviously I knew I was in good shape because I set a PB last month in Copenhagen but I was eager to run in Valencia because it’s one of the flattest circuits I’ve ever run and I was confident of improving on my best.
“I realised the race slowed down between the ninth and 10th kilometre so I decided to step up the pace and go for everything.”
Valencia, often promoted as ‘the city of running’, has played host to all three standing world records for the half marathon: Abraham Kiptum’s men’s record of 58:18, Joyciline Jepkosgei’s women’s record of 1:04:51 and Netsanet Gudeta’s women-only record of 1:06:11, set at the IAAF World Half Marathon Championships Valencia 2018.
*Subject to the usual ratification procedures
Valencia Half Marathon Leading results
1 Abraham Kiptum (KEN) 58:18
2 Jemal Yimer (ETH) 58:33
3 Abadi Hadis (ETH) 58:44
4 Amdamlak Belihu Berta (ETH) 59:19
5 Stephen Kiprop (KEN) 59:21
6 Bernard Kipkorir Ngeno (KEN) 59:22
7 El Hassan Elabassi (MAR) 59:27
8 Simon Cheprot (KEN) 59:28
9 Abel Kipchumba (KEN) 59:29
10 Josphat Boit (KEN) 59:42
1 Gelete Burka (ETH) 1:06:11
2 Alia Mohammed Saeed (UAE) 1:06:13
3 Edith Chelimo (KEN) 1:06:18
4 Pauline Korikwiang (KEN) 1:06:31
5 Diana Chemtai Kipyogei (KEN) 1:07:07
6 Bekelech Gudeta (ETH) 1:07:48
7 Yeshi Kalayu Chekole (ERI) 1:07:58
8 Helen Bekele Tola (ETH) 1:08:39
9 Risper Chebet (KEN) 1:10:02
10 Karoline Nadolska (POL) 1:10:43