Lausanne stage awaits Cheptegei, Chemutai

Chemutai is seeking to find a spark in Laussane. PHOTO/COURTSEY 

What you need to know:

Cheptegei is looking to polish ahead of his bid to retain the 10000m gold medal at the Budapest World Athletics Championships later in August.

Uganda’s Olympic champions Peruth Chemutai and Joshua Cheptegei arrived in Swiss city Lausanne with varying goals.

The pair will compete over the women’s 3000m steeplechase and men’s 5000m races respectively during the Lausanne Diamond League (DL) Meeting on Friday.

Budapest in sight

Cheptegei is looking to polish ahead of his bid to retain the 10000m gold medal at the Budapest World Athletics Championships later in August.

He, along with 15 other men, will go for the 12-and-a-half-lap race under the lights at Stade Olympique de la Pontaise.

This is Cheptegei’s second track race this month after striking fourth place over the same distance during the Florence DL in Italy on June 2. “It’s only a few weeks after Florence, his shape there was already good,” his coach Addy Ruiter said on Thursday.

Time won’t matter?

“So the improvements you can make are very small. It’s especially important now that in Budapest, he also has the right mind-set for winning a gold medal in the 10000m.”

“For tomorrow (Friday), the target is running a tactical good race, time is not important,” added Ruiter. In Florence, Cheptegei posted 12 minutes and 53.81 seconds for his second fastest 5000m in 23 career races.

With Cheptegei lagging behind, that race had particularly been slow for 10 laps until Olympic 10000m champion Selemon Barega kicked with 800m to go.

After a fast 5000m race at the Oslo DL in Norway where Ethiopian Yomif Kejelcha and Ugandan Jacob Kiplimo tied at the tape on June 15 with 12:41.73 - the fastest this year - Cheptegei will definitely keep an eye on his watch.

Ethiopian test awaits

In Lausanne, Cheptegei still has a duel with Barega and six other Ethiopians including experienced two-time world champion Edris Muktar, World Cross-country silver medallist Berihu Aregawi and Haile Bekele Telahun who posted a new personal best of 12:46.21 in third place in Oslo.

Now onto the lady Chemutai. She ironically is among the top athletes yet to qualify for the Budapest Worlds Athletics. Chemutai hasn’t posted nine minutes and 23 seconds or under over the water-jump race since the window opened on July 30, 2022.

C’mon Olympic queen!

That opening closes on July 30 and yet, according to her management Global Sports Communication (GSC), this is her last race in plan before Budapest.

“The target for Peruth is to run the entry standard,” admitted her coach Ruiter. Chemutai’s season track bow was tough. She finished in a distant 11th place with 9:31.71 during the Doha DL in Qatar on May 5.

“She was in and after Doha sick for some weeks. For weeks, the training has been going well but she needs more weeks to be in top shape again.”

Chemutai, who also won the Commonwealth steeplechase bronze medal in Birmingham, England last August, is in a field comprising Kenyans Fancy Cherono and world record holder Beatrice Chepkoech.

There is also a quartet of Ethiopians like Mekides Abebe but world U20 silver medallist Sembo Almayew is the fastest this year with 9:00.71 while Zerfe Wondemagegn is second best with 9:04.61.


Lausanne Diamond League: Peruth Chemutai (3000m steeplechase), Joshua Cheptegei (5000m)


Date of birth: September 12, 1996

Major Races: 5000m, 10000m

Personal Bests: 5000m (12:35.36), 10000m (26:11.00)

Coach: Addy Ruiter

Manager: Jurrie van der Velden

Kit Sponsor: Nike


Mar 6: Cannes 10K (1st, 26:49)

May 27: Prefontaine Classic 5000m (1st, 12:57.99)

Jul 17: Oregon Worlds 10000m Final (1st, 27:27.43)

Jul 21: Oregon Worlds 5000m Heat 1 (4th, 13:24.47)

Jul 24: Oregon Worlds 5000m Final (9th, 13:13.12)

Dec 31: NN San Silvestre 10K (1st, 27:09)


Feb 18: World X-Country (3rd, 29:37)

Mar 19: New York Half-Marathon (2nd, 1:02:09)

Jun 2: Florence DL (4th, 12:53.81)


Date of Birth: Jul 10, 1999

Major Event: 3000m steeplechase

Personal Best: 9:01.45

Coach: Addy Ruiter

Manager: Jurrie van der Velden

Worlds Appearances: 11th (Oregon 2022), 5th (Doha 2019), 8th Heat 3 (London 2017)

Major Honours: Tokyo 2020 Olympics (Gold), Birmingham 2022 Commonwealth Games (Bronze), 2018 World U20 Championships (Silver), 2015 Commonwealth Youth Games (1500m Silver & 3000m Silver)


May 5: Doha DL, 11th (9:31.71)


May 7: Kip Keino, 3rd (9:20.07)

May 28: Prefontaine Classic, 4th (9:05.54)

Jun 6: FBK Games, 1st (9:14.00)

Jul 16: Oregon World Champs - Heat 2, 5th (9:16.66)

Jul 20: Oregon World Champs - Final, 11th (9:21.93)

Aug 5: Commonwealth Games, 3rd (9:23.24)