Confident Kipyegon running a double in Paris

Ferdinand Omanyala ran his second fastest time ever on Saturday (LUIS TATO)

Ferdinand Omanyala ran his second fastest time ever on Saturday (LUIS TATO)

Kenyan middle-distance superstar Faith Kipyegon will be chasing double gold at the Paris Olympics next month after adding qualification in her 1500m specialty at trials in Nairobi on Saturday.

The 30-year-old mother of one had bagged her ticket for the 5,000 meters the day before.

The two-time Olympic champion was an odds-on favorite for the 1500 meters and ran a perfect qualifying race to come home in a remarkable time of 3 minutes 53:98 seconds.

β€œIt will be history to win the 1,500 meters for the third time and concentrate on the 5,000 meters,” Kipyegon said.

β€œI know it wouldn’t be easy, but I’m going to try to see what’s possible.”

Only Kipyegon and Russia’s Tatiana Kazankina have successfully defended an Olympic title in the women’s 1500 meters.

Last summer in Budapest, the Kenyan became the first athlete to achieve a World Cup double in the 1,500 and 5,000 meters. It was her third world title in the 1500 meters and came in a season in which she set three world records.

She is joined in the Kenyan team by reigning 800m world champion Emmanuel Wanyonyi, who made no mistake during Saturday’s trials, clocking a world-leading and personal best time of 1:41:70.

Wanyonyi was reinstated for the final after falling in a collision just 10 meters from the finish line in the semi-final.

The 2018 Commonwealth Games champion Wycliffe Kinyamal was a distant second in 1:42:50, but it was enough to book second place in an 800m course that will be without two-time champion Emmanuel Korir who failed to qualify.

“I’m walking with a swollen foot after yesterday’s fall, but I didn’t want to make another mistake and not qualify for the Olympics for the first time,” Wanyonyi said.

Elsewhere, Africa’s 100m record holder Ferdinand Omanyala ran 9.79 seconds in his fifth race of the season. It was Omanyala’s second fastest time.

“I’m happy with my time here today and the progress I’m making in the run-up to the Olympic Games. It shows that if I train really well in the coming weeks I can expect very good results. I’ve peaked at the right time “, he says. said.