Chesang breaks 21km national record in Delhi

Ugandan Stella Chesang (L) in the leading pack of the women's race at the Delhi Half Marathon 2022. PHOTO/COURTSEY 

What you need to know:

In her first competitive 21km race, Chesang braved the humid conditions to post a time of one hour, eight minutes and 11 seconds in the Indian capital.

Stella Chesang may not have retained her Commonwealth 10000m title but the long-distance runner has bounced back from maternity with a bang.

On Sunday, the long-distance runner produced another impressive performance by setting a new national record (NR) while taking third place at the Delhi Half-Marathon in India.

In her first competitive 21km race, Chesang braved the humid conditions to post a time of one hour, eight minutes and 11 seconds in the Indian capital.

“It was Hot and humid, difficult conditions to run fast,” admitted her manager Jurrie van der Velden. “But she did well on her debut,” the Dutchman said.

Contrary to the men’s race, the women’s race was a one-woman show from just after halfway. This is Chesang’s second NR this year having won the Cape Town 10K in South Africa with a time of 30:40 to erase her previous mark of 31:14 set at the Durban 10K in 2018.

Here, Chesang broke the 21km NR previously held by Mercyline Chelangat at 1:08:27 set when she came fourth at the Barcelona Half-Marathon in Spain last October.

In New Delhi, Chesang was part of the leading group of ten who crossed 5km in 15:40 and while pace dropped and the pack remained of six, they went through 10km in 31:42.

Eventual winner Kenyan Irine Cheptai broke away after 12km, proceeding to win in a personal best of 1:06:42. World 5000m bronze medallist Dawit Seyaum from Ethiopia was second in 1:8:02.

Meanwhile, Martin Musau was refrained from charging ahead by manager Jurrie but still achieved his mission of a personal best despite finishing 12th at the Amsterdam Marathon in the Netherlands.

He posted a time of two hours, nine minutes and seconds after withstanding windy conditions. “It was very windy but pacers did a very good job,” the Dutchman further noted.  

“A couple of times Martin wanted to push but I told him to relax and wait. So he waited until (Ugandan pacer Boniface) Sikowo left at 34km and then he controlled the pace of the (second) group.”

They were at 2:09:30 pace with 8km left and Musau ran with Somali Khadar Basheer until 38km. “He just missed a 2.08 due to the strong wind.

“Good race, because of the wind, we decided to go for safety with the group of 2:10,” explained Musau’s coach Addy Ruiter.

“They passed half way just below 1:05:00 then sped up in the second half,” Ruiter said. Musau’s finish means he ranks third among marathoners in quest for slots to the Budapest World Championships due next August in Hungary.

The leading pair of that queue under the entry standard of 2:09:40 from December 1, 2021 and will close on May 30, 2023 is led by Stephen Kissa and Victor Kiplangat, both of whom train with Musau under Ruiter.




1 Irine Cheptai (KEN) 66:42

2 Dawit Seyaum (ETH) 68:02

3 Stella Chesang (UGA) 68:11



1 Tsegay Getachew (ETH) 2:04:49

2 Titus Kipruto (KEN) 2:04:54

3 Bazezew Asmare (ETH) 2:04:57

12 Martin Musau (UGA) 2:09:04



1 Stephen Kissa; Hamburg Marathon (2nd, 2:04:48 on Apr 24, 2022)

2 Victor Kiplangat; Hamburg Marathon (4th, 2:05:09 on Apr 24, 2022)

3 Martin Musau; Amsterdam Marathon (12th, 2:09:04 on Oct 16, 2022)

4 Geofrey Kusuro; Madrid Marathon (2nd, 2:09:23 on Apr 24, 2022)