Kip Keino Classic -- Letsile Tebogo Shines Bright: Secures 8th Spot in Top Ten Active Sprinters
Letsile Tebogo Shines Bright: Secures 8th Spot in Top Ten Active Sprinters

Gaborone (BOT, Apr 29) – Muzala Samukonga of Zambia, the African and Commonwealth champion, set a massive world lead and national record of 43.91 in the men’s 400m event at the FNB Botswana Golden Grand Prix, which debuted as the second African WACT Gold meet. The meet, held at an altitude of 1014 meters, drew an enthusiastic crowd.

Samukonga became the third African to clock a sub-44-second time in the 400m after Wayde van Niekerk and Isaac Makwala. Grenada’s legendary Kirani James was second with a time of 44.76, followed by Botswana’s Leungo Scotch, who achieved a personal best and Budapest standard of 44.92 to take third place.

Letsile Tebogo, a two-time World U20 100m champion, added another world lead and personal best by winning the men’s 200m with a time of 19.87 (-0.3). He was followed by Canada’s Aaron Brown, who finished in 20.00, and Liberia’s Joseph Fahnbulleh, who clocked 20.14 to achieve a World qualifier. Olympic champion Andre De Grasse of Canada finished in seventh place with a time of 20.41.

Ferdinand Omanyala, Kenya’s sprint star, clocked a windy 9.78w (2.3) to win the men’s 100m event, beating Tebogo, who finished second with a time of 9.91, and US sprinter Kenny Bednarek, who finished third with a time of 10.02. Samwel Imeta, also from Kenya, won the B race with a time of 10.10 (0.2) to achieve a personal best.

The Kenyan sprinters also set a national record in the 4x100m relay with a time of 38.26, securing a qualifying position in the Road to Budapest. Nigeria’s Ese Brume delivered the third world lead of the event by winning the women’s long jump with a distance of 677 (0.6). Marthe Koala of Burkina Faso improved her national record with a distance of 669 (0.3) to take second place, while Maryse Luzolo of Germany achieved a European lead of 661 (-1.1) to take third place.

Mary Moraa of Kenya, who stepped down to 400m, clocked 50.44 to set another national record and achieve the Budapest standard. Marquise Dendy of the USA won the high-quality men’s long jump with a distance of 834 (-0.1), followed by Ingar Bratseth-Kiplesund of Norway, who leaped to a new national record of 821 (-0.8), and LaQuan Nairn of the Bahamas, who achieved a distance of 810 (-0.3) to take third place.

In the men’s 400m hurdles, US runner Trevor Bassitt clocked 48.43 to achieve a Budapest qualifying time, while South Africa’s Sokwakhana Zazini achieved a personal best of 48.58 to take second place. The Italians dominated the shot put event, with Leonardo Fabbri winning with a distance of 21.32, followed by Zane Weir with a distance of 21.09.

Twanisha Terry of the USA won the women’s 100m with a time of 11.05 (0.4), followed by Egypt’s Bassant Hemida with a time of 11.09. US sprinters Kayla White and Sha’Carri Richardson finished first and second in the women’s 200m event, with 22.38 (-0.5) and 22.54.

Other notable victories at the meet included Ethiopia’s Habitam Alemu in the women’s 800m event, who achieved a time of 1:59.35, and US athlete Adelaide Aquilla in the women’s shot put event, who achieved a distance of 18.53m. The winner of the men’s 800m event was Kenyan Abel Kipsang, although official times were not available.

The Botswana team won the mixed 4x400m relay with a time of 3:21.88 and also secured a qualifying position in the Road to Budapest.

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