Former World U20 steeplechase bronze medallist, Simon Kiprop Koech saved the country’s face at the Prefontaine Classic held on Saturday night at the Hayward Field on the campus of the University of Oregon.
Koech who early this year surprised five-time champion Benjamin Kigen to win the Kenyan Defence Forces Championship over the distance, won the men’s race in a time of 8:06.26 and was followed by World U20 silver medallist, Samuel Firewu from Ethiopia in 8:10.74 with New Zealand’s National Record holder, George Beamish closing the podium three finishes in a time of 8:14.01.
Ethiopia’s Getnet Wale and Japan’s Ryuji Miura finished in fourth and fifth place in respective time of 8:14.96 and 8:15.45.
Race favorites Commonwealth Games champion, Abraham Kibiwott, Olympic Games 3,000m steeplechase bronze medallist, Benjamin Kigen and the 2021 World U20 3,000m steeplechase champion Amos Serem finished in disappointing sixth, seventh and eighth in respective time of 8:16.27, 8:16.50 and 8:17.99.
- Simon Kiprop Koech (KEN) 8:06.26
- Samuel Firewu (ETH) 8:10.74
- George Beamish (NZL) 8:14.01
- Getnet Wale (ETH) 8:14.96
- Ryuji Miura (JPN) 8:15.45