World champion Joshua Cheptegei has broken the world record in the men’s 10,000 meters during a specially held track meet in Valencia, Spain.
At the event dubbed “World Record Day,” 24-year-old Cheptegei used the help of pacers and a specially designed lighting system along the track to successfully break previous record which had stood for 15 years.
The Ugandan star crossed the line in 26 minutes, 11 seconds to break Kenenisa Bekele’s mark of 26:17.53 set in Brussels in 2005 by a whopping six seconds.
Cheptegei has already broken two world records this year, including the 5,000-meter world record in Monaco.
The Ugandan is the 10th man in history to hold the 5,000-meter and 10,000-meter world records at the same time.
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“With the look of things now with COVID-19 you cannot win a medal, you cannot race in a championship this year so the best is to try to break the world record,” he said before the race.
Meanwhile, Ethiopia’s Letesenbet Gidey set a new mark in the women’s 5,000 at the same event in Valencia.
Gidey’s time of 14:06.62 was almost five seconds better than the previous record set by fellow Ethiopian Tirunesh Dibaba in Oslo in 2008.
Both runners were helped by the “wavelight pacing technology,” with lights streaming along the track to show the pace of the previous record.