The USA’s prodigiously talented Mary Cain, a 1500m finalist at last year’s IAAF World Championships in Moscow, won her first world title at 3000m here by kicking away from the pack on the last turn to win in 8:58.48, her best time ever.
Cain was the first US woman to win a medal of any colour at any event longer than 800m at the World Junior Championships.
Lilian Kasait Rengeruk of Kenya and her team-mate Valentina Chepkwemoi Mateiko took silver and bronze respectively, chasing Cain home in 9:00.53 and 9:00.79.
After early pace-making by Japan’s Nozomi Takamatsu, Rengeruk took control of the race as they approached the first kilometre mark, throwing in repeated surges around the second bend to thin the pack. Joined by Mateiko, Ethiopia’s Etagegen Woldu, Weini Kelati of Eritrea, and Cain, they reached 1000m in 3:03.84.
Mateiko was credited with the second kilometre split of 6:07.39, then Rengeruk took over again. With a few more surges, the pack was narrowed to Rengeruk, Mateiko, Cain and Woldu as they approached the bell.
On the backstretch Cain was clearly itching to go, passing Mateiko on the inside and creeping up on Rengeruk’s heels. Finally with 150m remaining she burst to the front and simply ran away, increasing her lead all the way down the homestretch.
Parker Morse for the IAAF