Moraa reveals difficulties despite spectacular Diamond League finish

Written by on 3 July 2023

Kenyan star Mary Moraa has revealed the challenges she faced to win the women’s 800m race in the Lausanne Diamond League Circuit on Friday, June 30, 2023.

The 2022 Commonwealth Games champion clinched the 800m title in tactful fashion, as she also recorded a season-best time of 1:57.43.

Moraa’s key rival was Keely Hodgkinson – the Olympic and world silver medalist – of Great Britain, who finished second with a time of 1:58.37, while Natoya Goule of Jamaica claimed the third spot on the podium when she crossed the finish line with a time of 1:58.90.

Moraa’s challenges

“It was a very challenging race, and I felt completely empty at the end of it. The weather was particularly difficult for me. My mentor would have been extremely proud of my achievements tonight,” Moraa said after her victory.

Meanwhile, Moraa was tactful throughout the race, although she trailed the pacemaker in the opening stages. As the race tightened, she adjusted her pace in the first lap and at times slowed down in a way to dictate the tempo of the race.

Hodgkinson and other challengers had to adjust their paces in order to keep their positions close to Moraa. The Kenyan maintained her pace in a well-executed manner when the race hit the final 100m before she displayed exceptional finishing to record a time of 1:57.43, which now ranks as the second-fastest in the world this year.

Mary Moraa in a past athletic action. Photo/Mary Moraa/Facebook.

On the other hand, Hodgkinson managed to finish second, with Goule content with third place. Hodgkinson currently holds the world-leading time of 1:55.77.

“I wasn´t very happy about this race, I was in great shape, but I guess today was not my day. Mary was better. My plans for the season will not change. I really liked being here, running in a full stadium with a great crowd,” Hodgkinson said.

Catriona Bisset of Australia, who finished with a time of 1:58.95, and Jemma Reekie, who recorded a time of 1:59.32, are the other athletes who finished in the top five.

Swiss athletes Audrey Werro and Lore Hoffmann finished in the sixth and seventh places, respectively, with the former recording a time of 1:59.71 and Hoffmann achieving a season-best time of 2:00.49.

Chepkoech’s milestone

Another star who flew the Kenyan flag high is Beatrice Chepkoech, who emerged with a new meeting record of 9:05.98 in the 3000m. Chepkoech managed the feat despite facing tough opposition from Ethiopia’s Sembo Almayew, who settled for second in 9:06.82.

Peruth Chemutai, representing Uganda, could not manage the pace of Chepkoech and Almayew and ended up finishing third in 9:11.91.

Chekpoech was paced by Fancy Cherono and managed to take control of the race and finally beat the previous record of 9:16.99 that was set by Virginia Nyambura in 2015.

Waited win

This was Chepkoech’s first Diamond League victory since her participation in Zurich on August 29, 2019. She had finished fourth in the Doha and Florence Diamond League races, respectively. The achievement came for Chepkoech after she paced Faith Kipyegon to the world record in 5,000m in Paris on June 9 at 14:05.20.

Beatrice Chepkoech in action during the 2019 World Athletics Championships in Doha, Qatar. Photo/World Athletics.
Beatrice Chepkoech in action during the 2019 World Athletics Championships in Doha, Qatar. Photo/World Athletics.

The victories registered by both Moraa and Chepkoech are other milestones after Kipyegon had shattered world records in the previous circuits in Florence and Paris.

These achievements come after President William Ruto affirmed that the government will reward athletes who excel in their own disciplines.

Records in 800m Women’s Race at Lausanne Diamond League:
Mary Moraa (KEN) – 1:57.43 (Season’s Best)
Keely Hodgkinson (GBR) – 1:58.37
Natoya Goule (JAM) – 1:58.90
Catriona Bisset (AUS) – 1:58.95
Jemma Reekie (GBR) – 1:59.32
Audrey Werro (SUI) – 1:59.71
Lore Hoffmann (SUI) – 2:00.49 (Season’s Best)
Elena Bellò (ITA) – 2:00.76
Noelie Yarigo (BEN) – 2:04.93

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