US snatch women’s 4x800m gold from Kenya


The United States snatched the women’s 4x800m relay gold medal from favourites Kenya only moments after their male compatriots set a new world record over 4x1,500m.

Eunice Sum, who anchored the women, had a tough time redeeming what seemed a lost hope after the evergreen Janeth Jepkosgei Busienei worked hard in the third leg to return Kenya to the medal bracket.

USA (pictured) won in 8:01.58 as Kenyans took silver in 8:04.28 and Russia bronze in 8:08.19.

Agatha Jeruto Kimaswai, who ran the first leg let Chanelle Price go a stride too far as the American completed the last lap in 58.8 seconds.

Sylvia Chemutai Chesebe did not make matters any better as she was overtaken by three athletes to finish in sixth position.

Jepkosgei, a former world and Commonwealth Games champion and Olympics silver medallist, clawed back to second position in her typical magestic movement. Sum tried her best, and almost brought hope of a possible upset as she approached the home stretch, but Brenda Martinez ensured the gold medal was firmly in Americans’ grip.

“I congratulate Americans for a job well done. They also beat us in the Penn Relays last year. But my “daughters” also did a great job. Congratulations to them. Silver is not bad for them because a winner must be there even if not us,” said Jepkosgei.

Sum confessed that being a front runner, she found it difficult to fit in a formation where she started in second position.

“I am a typical front runner and I knew it would be difficult for me to overtake the American,” she said.

Meanwhile the Kenyan golden girls of 4x1,500m will continue with their respective programmes after setting a new world record here.

Mercy Cherono, Faith Kipyegon and Hellen Obiri will also proceed to Oregon for the Prefontaine Classic on May 31. Irene Jelagat won’t be in the race.