(MENAFN- The Peninsula) AFP
Budapest: Kenya's Faith Kipyegon underlined her staas one of the all-time greats of distance running by sealing a historic 1500m/5000m double at the World Athletics Championships in Budapest on Saturday.
After claiming a third world 1500m title on Tuesday, Kipyegon delivered another masterclass, this time in the 5,000m, to win her second gold in the Hungarian capital.
The 29-year-old bided her time and produced a perfectly calm last lap for the win in 14min 53.88sec, her victory underlining her dominance this season, especially given that the field contained six of the 10 fastest women of all time.
Dutch rival Sifan Hassan claimed silver in 14:54.11, with another Kenyan, Beatrice Chebet, taking bronze (14:54.33).
"This has been an amazing year for me," said Kipyegon, the two-time Olympic 1500m champion having this year set three world records in the 1500m, 5,000m and mile.
"Making history today, winning two gold medals in a championships is what I was dreaming for this season.
"I have been patient waiting to be able to break world records and win double golds. But my dream just came true, it is amazing."
Kipyegon added: "I have been pushing myself to the limits and I will continue to push myself in the future.
"I believed in myself. I have been consistent, focused on the finish line and on writing history."
Ethiopia's 10,000m world champion Gudaf Tsegay shot out into the lead, splitting the field immediately.
Teammate Ejgayehu Taye took up the front running as Kipyegon was surrounded by two of their teammates as the two distance powerhouses from east Africa worked on their race tactics.
Stride for stride
The Ethiopian surge eased, Kipyegon and compatriot Lilian Kasait Rengeruk moved to the front of the pack with eight laps left, Hassan sat three off the back.
Tsegay was back in front to lead the field with four laps remaining and once again spurted down the far straight, causing Hassan to move away from the absolute tailenders.
Hassan was on Kipyegon's shoulder as the bell rang for the final 400 metres.
Stride for stride, they accelerated away, chased by Chebet, the rest of the field trying desperately to stay with the front runners.
Coming into the home straight, Kipeygon kicked, eyes fixed on the big screen situated just beyond the finish line, and held on for a fantastic victory.
Reigning Olympic champion Hassan also capped off a successful championships, having rebounded from falling with the line at her mercy in the 10,000m to win this silver and a bronze in the 1500m.
"The race was not easy," said Kipyegon. "It was a tactical one but I am mentally stable and have managed to push myself."
Hassan said the championships in Budapest had "taught me a lot".
"It has given me more confidence because I moved to the marathon this year and for two years I've hardly done any speed work at all," she said.
"How I was able to sprint at the end I don't know. I really felt amazing on the last lap and it was only in the last 20 metres I couldn't hold on.
"Faith was stronger than me today. She's just broken world records and this year is better than me but I know where I am at."