Continuing with our roundup of ranking the top athletes, here we are with the men’s track distance events.
bold = entered in this Friday’s Herculis Diamond League meet in Monaco
1. David Lekuta Rudisha (KEN)
2. Mohammed Aman (ETH)
3. Abubaker Kaki (SUD)
4. Adam Kszczot (POL)
5. Timothy Kitum (KEN)
also watch: Nigel Amos (BOT), Anthony Chemut (KEN), Leonard Kirwa Kosencha (KEN), Abraham Kipchirchir Rotich (KEN), Nick Symmonds (USA)
Rudisha is so much better than everyone else that if this were baseball, he’d already have clinched the pennant. Aman beat Rudisha last year, and his only loss this outdoor season is to the inconsistent Kaki. Kszczot bombed at the Pre Classic but has two victories to his credit, one last Friday in London.
1. Silas Kiplagat (KEN)
2. Nixon Kiplimo Chepseba (KEN)
3. Asbel Kiprop (KEN)
4. Caleb Mwangangi Ndiku (KEN)
5. Mekonnen Gebremedhin (ETH)
also watch: Bethwell Birgen (KEN), Collins Cheboi (KEN), Abdalaati Iguider (MAR), James Kiplagat Magut (KEN), Ayanleh Souleiman (DJI)
Kiplagat has the world’s best time and won the Kenyan trial race, which make him an easy choice for #1 despite a blow-up race at the Prefontaine Classic. Kenyan depth is on display here, with the top four rankings and seven of the ten.
1. Paul Kipsiele Koech (KEN)
2. Brimin Kiprop Kipruto (KEN)
3. Ezekiel Kemboi (KEN)
4. Abel Kiprop Mutai (KEN)
5. Richard Kipkemboi Mateelong (KEN)
also watch: Roba Gari (ETH), Jairus Kipchoge Birech (KEN), Conseslus Kipruto (KEN), Mahiedine Mekhissi-Benabbad (FRA), Brahim Taleb (MAR)
Koech always has difficulty in the high-altitude Kenyan championship races, and this year he finished a well-beaten seventh. Otherwise he is undefeated and has taken on and handily beaten all of the others, and ran within a second of the world record. Even without him, Kenyan gold looks safe.
1. Dejen Gebremeskel (ETH)
2. Mohamed Farah (GBR)
3. Hagos Gebrhiwet (ETH)
4. Isiah Kiplangat Koech (KEN)
5. Edwin Cheruiyot Soi (KEN)
also watch: Yenew Alamirew (ETH), Tariku Bekele (ETH), Bernard Lagat (USA), Thomas Pkemei Longosiwa (KEN), Galen Rupp (USA)
Gebremeskel has two wins on the Diamond League circuit, as does Farah, but the Ethiopian has run notably faster. Recall that Gebremeskel was the guy who lost a shoe at the start of last year’s Boston Indoor Games and still outkicked Farah over the last lap.
1. Mo Farah (GBR)
2. Wilson Kiprop (KEN)
3. Kenenisa Bekele (ETH)
4. Galen Rupp (USA)
5. Tariku Bekele (ETH)
also watch: Gebre Gebremariam (ETH), Cam Levins (CAN), Moses Ndiema Masai (KEN), Bedan Karoki Muchiri (KEN), Sileshi Sihine (ETH)
This event involves quite a bit of guesswork given the infrequency of competition. Farah hasn’t run a 10k this year but is at #1 on reputation and performance at shorter distances. Kiprop won the Kenyan trials race, and Kenenisa Bekele has shown steady improvement throughout the season. The three above who are not from East Africa all have something in common, specifically the Pacific Northwest–Farah and Rupp train in Portland and Levins is from a small town on Vancouver Island. Yes, I do believe Levins belongs in the world’s top ten, and no, it’s not wishful thinking.