Sunday, May 20, 2007

Speedy Mezzy

Earlier this afternoon I watched Meseret “Mezzy” Defar on live TV break the 2 Mile World Record in the Adidas Track Classic in Carson, California. Meseret won the race in 9:10.47, improving the old record of 9:11.97 held by Regina Jacobs of USA. It is worth noting that Regina Jacobs was banned from track and field few years ago for using banned performance enhancing substances and all her records have been viewed with suspicion as a result. It is nice to have Meseret “clean” that record.

Meseret ran most of the race by herself and her margin of victory appeared to be no less than 150 meters. She was simply in a league of her own and she would probably have run even faster if she had close competition. This is the third world record Meseret has set in a space of one year. In June 2006 she set an outdoor
5000M World Record in New York, and this year in early February she set an indoor 3000M World Record in Stuttgart, Germany.

It was great to see a sizeable contingent of flag waving Ethiopian supporters cheering on Meseret to a new World Record. She returned the favor by going to the crowd immediately after crossing the finish line. The camera showed Meseret blowing kisses to her fans and yelling back ewedachualehu [I love you].

The only other race that Ethiopians participated in at this meet was the women’s 1500M. Meskerem Legesse finished 7th in 4:09.29 and Mestawot Tadesse finished 9th in 4:09.80.

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