Faith Kipyegon wins the 2023 World Athletics Championships women's 5000m final gold

By David Monti, @d9monti
(c) 2023 Race Results Weekly, all rights reserved

BUDAPEST (26-Aug) — They knew it was coming, but they just couldn’t stop it. In the women’s 5000m final here tonight at the 2023 World Athletics Championships at the National Athletics Center, every woman in the field knew that Kenya’s Faith Kipyegon would set the race up for a last-lap sprint.

Faith Kipyegon Setup Brilliant Finale Lap

At the 3000m mark, hit in a sluggish 9:16.55, it became obvious that Kipyegon would be in prime position to use her other-worldly closing speed to put the race away in the final two laps.

“I felt really good until the last 300,” said American Elise Cranny, who finished ninth in 14:59.22.  “And then they just had a whole ‘nother gear.”

Indeed, at the bell Kipyegon, Dutchwoman Sifan Hassan (running her third and final event at these championships), Ethiopian Gudaf Tsegay, and Kenyan Beatrice Chebet all hit the gas. 

Read more: Mo Katir, Luis Grijalva, and Jakob Ingebrigtsen advanced in men’s 5000m

Kipyegon pulled all of them down the backstretch, and with 200 meters to go Tsegay could not keep up (she would fade to 13th place at the finish). 

Hassan and Chebet were sprinting full out, but Kipyegon was still pulling away.  She completed her final circuit in 56.6 seconds and got the win in 14:53.88.  Hassan got silver in 14:54.11, and Chebet the bronze in 14:54.33.

“Things have been incredible here,” said Kipyegon, who won the 1500m gold medal four days ago.  She continued: “This (medal) I dedicate to my husband. He has been supportive for my success. He’s the most amazing husband I (could) ever have.”

Faith Kipyegon celebrates the 5000m gold at the 2023 World Athletics Championships
Faith Kipyegon celebrates the 5000m gold at the 2023 World Athletics Championships. Photo by Stephen Pond/Getty Images for World Athletics

Faith Kipyegon is already looking ahead to the Wanda Diamond League final

Kipyegon, who said that she would contest the Wanda Diamond League final in Eugene in mid-September, is now the only woman to win both the 1500m and 5000m at a World Athletics Championships (the 5000m was first run for women in 1995; prior to that women ran the 3000m). 

Read more: RRW Full Report: Ethiopia’s Beriso wins women’s World Championships Marathon title

Mary Decker (USA) won the 1500m and 3000m in 1983, and Tetyana Samolenko of the Soviet Union did the same double in 1987, but those distances are much closer.

Earlier this year, Kipyegon set world records for 1500m (3:49.11), one mile (4:07.64), and 5000m (14:05.20).  She is immensely popular in Kenya, including with president William Ruto, but she said she is fundamentally unchanged.

“It’s an amazing thing for people to know me, to cheer me,” Kipyegon said.  “It’s been an incredible season.”  

She added: “I’m still the same Faith. I try to be myself and try to be humble, and be friends to everybody.  I’m still the same.”

For more results, please visit the World Athletics live results page here

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