15 MAY 2008 General News Eugene, Oregon

World Athlete of the Year has World record bid in mind for Eugene – IAAF World Athletics Tour

Defar delights in her World record triumph in Oslo (AFP / Getty Images)Defar delights in her World record triumph in Oslo (AFP / Getty Images) © Copyright

Eugene, OregonEthiopia’s Meseret Defar, the current World record holder, and reigning World and Olympic champion for 5000m will attempt to break her own World record on 8 June at the 34th Prefontaine Classic which is a Grand Prix status meet as part of the IAAF World Athletics Tour 2008.

Defar, 24, the 2007 World Athlete of the Year, will try to improve her 14:16.63 world standard, set on 15 June at the Golden League meeting in Oslo.  That mark was an improvement on her own World record of 14:24.53, set on 3 June 2006.

"Meseret is focusing on running fast at the Prefontaine Classic," said her representative Mark Wetmore. "Her training is geared toward that race."

"Meseret has been one of the most consistent performers in the sport over the last four years, and to have her attempt the world record in Eugene is perhaps a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity for the fans at the Pre Classic," said meet director Tom Jordan.

To help establish a fast pace, Olga Komyagina of Russia will fly in for the meet. Komyagina finished 5th in this year's World Indoor Championships 3000m, which Defar won. 

Tom Jordan for the IAAF