DAVID RUDISHA of Kenya broke the men’s 800m World Record last night (22 August) at an IAAF World Challenge meeting in Berlin.The 21 year-olds’ time of 1:41.09 bettered the previous record by just 0.02 seconds. The World Record had been held for two days shy of 13 years by Kenyan born Danish athlete Wilson Kipketer. It was Kipketer who took the World Record away from Lord Sebastian Coe in 1997, only to go faster still just 11 day later.
Rudisha took only 48.65sec to reach 400m (with the help of a pacesetter) and maintained his pace with a second lap of 52.44sec. After his record breaking run he told the BBC World Service: “I feel great but I am also dreaming of becoming the first to run under 1:41.”
His form hasn’t come out of the blue either. Although he could only manage to reach the Semi-Finals in last year’s World Championship in Berlin, he won the recent African Championships and set a time of 1:41.51 in Heusden, Belgium, in July. This was the closest anybody had come to the now old WR.
I really do hope he does go under 1:41 (and that I see it). It’s been one of the main milestones in athletics that just hasn’t been reached yet, like a 9m Long Jump on the men’s side and a 2.10m High Jump for the women.