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Romanian Szabo eyes new 1500 metres world record

Romanian Szabo eyes new 1500 metres world record
Reuters

22 February 2001 – Bucharest - Olympic 5000 metres champion Gabriela Szabo said on Thursday she was targeting a world best performance in the 1500 metres later this year.

But the Romanian athlete said her immediate goal was to win the gold medal in the 3000 metres at the World indoor Championships in Lisbon, Portugal next month.

Szabo, in great form after setting a world 3000m indoor record in Birmingham, England last week, added that improving on that time was "improbable" given the high level of competition.

The Romanian clocked eight minutes 32.88 seconds at the Grand Prix in Birmingham, beating the previous record of 8.33.82 set by Elly van Hulst of the Netherlands in Budapest in 1989.

Regarding her aims over the shorter distance she said, "I'm in good shape and I hope to beat the 1500 metres record later this year".

"Unfortunately, the World championships' schedule is too tight and I don't know now if I could run both the 3000 metres and the 1500 metres," she added.

"What athletes are looking for in such contests is a better ranking rather than an improved timing."

Confident Szabo said she was also considering running the 800 metres later in the year.

"The 800-metre race is one of my dreams," she said. "I've gained speed during the winter preparations, so I think I could run successfully over this distance."