Cruise control for sublime El Bakkali
Olympic and world 3,000m steeplechase champion, Soufiane El Bakkali entertained the crowds with a big enough advantage at the end of the race to wave and jog the final 50-meters.
The 27-year-old Moroccan clocked 8:09.84 to follow up on his win in Rabat, whilst Olympic and world fourth-placer, Getnet Wale of Ethiopia finished second with 8:12.27.
“In 2017, I came the first time to Stockholm, and I was only 20 years old. At that time I had only won the Diamond League in Rabat, so it meant a lot for me to have my second Diamond League win in Stockholm. Since then I have won a lot of other races,” recalled El Bakkali.
“It’s only my second race this season and I feel good. Now I have to see with my coach how to adapt the training. In Rabat, I was close to the world record in good conditions, and today there was wind and rain, so why not attempt to break the world record. But the main goal this season remains to extend my world title in Budapest.”
5000m victory for Chebet as expected
The women’s 5000m was taken by the expected winner, Beatrice Chebet of Kenya, who registered a fine 14:36.52 season’s best to comfortably claim the top spot.
The 23-year-old world silver medalist and world cross country champion followed her recent 3,000m victory in Oslo, as Ethiopia’s Lemlem Hailu - the world indoor 3000m champion - finished runner-up with 14:38.06.
“I was the only Kenyan in the race and you know, the Ethiopians are strong and help each other so I had to fight for this win,” Chebet explained.
“Yes, the weather was not really good but you need to run in any conditions, it was not easy to finish the race. My main goal now is the new PB at 5000m so maybe in London if the conditions are good, I can try to do it. I feel in good shape so anything is possible.
“I am already thinking about Budapest where my main target is to get on the podium at 5000m.”