Genzebe Dibaba, Brimin Kipruto and Mo Farah in action at the IAAF Diamond League meeting in Monaco (Philippe Fitte) © Copyright
General News Monaco

Monaco's top three moments – IAAF Diamond League

Later this week, the IAAF Diamond League heads to Monaco for the tenth meeting in the 2018 series. Here we look back at three of the more memorable moments from the Mediterranean Principality.

Dibaba breaks 22-year-old 1500m record, 2015

Genzebe Dibaba made history in the Stade Louis II with a women’s world 1500m record of 3:50.07, surpassing Qu Yunxia's mark of 3:50.46, set at the 1993 Chinese National Games.

After world indoor 800m champion Chanelle Price had paced her through 400m in 1:00.31 and 800m in 2:04.52 the Ethiopian still had European champion Sifan Hassan for company as she passed the bell in 2:50.3. But she kicked on for a monumental win that eclipsed a mark many observers expected to have stood for at least another 22 years.

Six women ran faster than four minutes. Hassan clocked a national record of 3:56.05 in second, while Shannon Rowbury broke the North American record with 3:56.29 in third.

“The pacemaker did a great job,” said Dibaba. “I’m the first athlete from Ethiopia to break the world record in the 1500m; that is amazing.

“I think Tirunesh will be happy, all of Ethiopia will be happy,” added Dibaba of her older sister, who recently gave birth to her first child.

Kipruto misses steeplechase WR by 0.01, 2011

Kenya’s Olympic 3000m steeplechase champion Brimin Kipruto produced one of the great track performances of all time as he missed the seven-year-old world record by just one hundredth of a second.

A stupendous last lap of around 60 seconds was enough for the 25-year-old from Keiyo District to see off the lingering challenge of Kenya’s past and future Olympic champion, Ezekiel Kemboi and win in 7:53.64 – just shy of the 7:53.53 run at the 2004 Brussels meeting by Qatar’s Saif Saaeed Shaheen.

 

Brimin Kipruto en route to his sizzling 7:53.64 in Monaco (Philippe Fitte)Brimin Kipruto en route to his sizzling 7:53.64 in Monaco (Philippe Fitte) © Copyright

 

It was clear something special was in the offing on a windless evening in the Principality when the field was reduced to four after the first 1000m.

With four laps remaining Kenya’s Paul Koech, who had arrived top of the 2011 world lists, took up the running.

Thirty metres into the final lap, however, Koech’s challenge faded, and a sustained burst by Kipruto from 250m out put paid to the Athens 2004 gold medallist.

But Kemboi and Koech were rewarded with lifetime bests, the former moving to fourth position on the all-time list with 7:55.76 while Koech's clocking of 7:57.32 lifted him to seventh.

"The race was so fast for everyone I didn't even know it was a world record pace," said Kipruto. "When I saw the clock I was just so grateful.”

Farah breaks European 1500m record, 2013

Britain’s Olympic 5000m and 10,000m champion Mo Farah set an astonishing European record of 3:28.81 behind winner Asbel Kiprop, who clocked 3:27.72.

 

Although the men’s 1500m was not a Diamond Race-counting event on this occasion, a near-capacity crowd at the Stade Louis II stadium witnessed an exceptional contest in which Farah followed the tall and upright Kenyan home to break the European record of 3:28.95 set by Spain’s Fermin Cacho in 1997.

Farah’s effort also eclipsed the British record of 3:29.67 set just along the coast in Nice in 1985 by Steve Cram – who was present to witness the race as a commentator for BBC TV.

For Farah, who had been hoping to match or narrowly better the 1500m best of 3:33.98 he had set on this track in 2009, it was an extraordinary result. 

Mike Rowbottom for the IAAF