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(c) 2020 Race Results Weekly, all rights reserved
(17-Sep) -- In warm and humid conditions, Jacob Kiplimo of Uganda and Jakob Ingebrigtsen of Norway battled to the line in a fast and dramatic men's 3000m at the Golden Gala Pietro Mennea in Rome, the penultimate stop of the pandemic-shortened 2020 Wanda Diamond League.
Off of a fast and steady pace set by Irishman Sean Tobin, who clicked-off 60-second laps through 1800m, Kiplimo trailed Ingebrigtsen by just a few steps in the final 200 meters. The pair were on pace to break 7:30, but it was unclear who would win. Ingebrigtsen, 19, who won the 2018 European Athletics titles at both 1500m and 5000m, would seem to have the best late-race speed, possessing a 3:28.68 1500m personal best.
But Kiplimo, the 2019 World Athletics Cross Country Championships silver medalist, just ran a 12:48.63 personal best for 5000m in Ostrava nine days ago and was keen to show some speed of his own. Ingebrigtsen had run the second-to-last lap in 60.5 seconds, and Kiplimo had no trouble keeping up. Coming into the home stretch, Kiplimo raised his eyes to look at the video monitor high up in the stadium, then poured it on to pass Ingebrigtsen inside of the final 30 meters. The small Ugandan won in 7:26.64 on the strength of a sizzling 56.5-second final lap. Kiplimo's time was not only a world leader, but a Diamond League record, a Ugandan record, and the fastest time in the world in more than 13 years.
Although he didn't win, Ingebrigtsen could not be disappointed with his second place finish in 7:27.05. His mark was a Norwegian record and the #2 time ever by a European, behind only Belgium's Mohammed Mourhit who ran 7:26.62 in 2000 (Mourhit was later suspended for using the blood booster EPO in 2002).
Down the finish order, there were additional records. Third place Stewart McSweyn of Australia, who did most of the leading after pacemaker Tobin dropped out, ran an Australian and Oceania record of 7:28.02 surpassing Craig Mottram's 7:32.19 from back in 2006. Fourth place went to Italy's Yemaneberhan Crippa who ran an Italian record 7:38.27 taking down Gennaro Di Napoli's 7:39.54 from 1996. Fifth place Mike Foppen of the Netherlands ran a personal best 7:39.75.
In the other distance event tonight at the cavernous --but nearly empty-- Stadio Olimpico, Britain's Jemma Reekie won against a strong field in the women's 800m by pulling ahead of the field inside of the final 200 meters, then holding off the final charge of Norway's Hedda Hynne. Reekie was timed in 1:59.76 to Hynne's 2:00.24 recording her ninth win of the year (indoors and outdoors, combined). Reekie's training mate Laura Muir held on to finish third in 2:00.49.
Also, in the men's 400m Puerto Rico's Wesley Vasquez stepped down from the 800m and ran a personal best 46.67.
The best performance of the meet was achieved by Sweden's Mondo Duplantis with his towering 6.15m clearance in the men's pole vault, the highest performance ever achieved outdoors.