As Joyciline Jepkosgei crossed the line, pumping her hands over her head, the plethora of Prague spectators lining the street erupted with glee. As Jepkosgei looked on dazed, she was embraced by the mayor of the 'city of many spires,' with the rest of the world beginning to contemplate the ramifications of the feat she had just pulled off.

Running in the Birell Prague Grand Prix 10k, Jepkosgei not only smashed the official #World Record set by British road racing legend Paul Radcliffe, but she demolished her own unofficial world record from April (also in the streets of Prague).

Advertisements
Advertisements

Completing the race largely by herself, albeit with the help of a pacer, Jepkosgei wrote herself into the history books in ravishing fashion by becoming the first woman ever to break 30 minutes on the road. During her tearing up of the worlds best field, she managed to unleash a first five kilometer split of 14:33, a new World Record in its own right when ratified. This almost 21 second record in the five kilometer distance was the second time she obliterated one record on her way to a win in a longer race.

Prague Half Marathon sees similar results:

In this years Prague Half Marathon, Jepkosgei made her name known as she challenged the past champion and her compatriot, #Violah Jepchumba.

Advertisements

She ended up running a fast 64:52 to win by a stunning margin of over 30 seconds to second placed Jepchumba. Her time meant she also set a sensational new world record by 14 seconds. She has literally run herself into the record books while becoming the first woman to break 65 minutes on the road.

What shocked the running community even further, however, was the way in which she set her record. Much like her performance in Prague on Saturday night, Jepkosgei took off at a torrential pace, diminishing the field with ease and keeping the pressure on the main field throughout. Ultimately, Jepkosgei ended up setting an unprecedented 4 world records in the single half marathon race, including records in the 10k, 15k and 20k distances.

In Prague tonight, she ripped off at a very similar pace, dispelling of all competition early on, including eventual third place finisher and second fastest of all time in the 10k, Violah Jepchumba. Able to clinch the win after staying strong throughout with the help of a pacemaker, Jepkosgei's win also meant she won the second to last event in the IAAF Gold Label Road Race, of which 7 races are in the Czech Republic.

Advertisements

The race ended up being fast all around, with second place finisher Fancy Chemutai clocking a time just 2 seconds outside the old world record of 30:04.

While Jepkkosgei wouldn't even confirm her intentions for the race tonight prior to its onset, afterward she reaffirmed her confidence to the media, detailing her intense training and her subsequent results. “Very happy and I thank god for making me the winner of the day and making me new world record holder, I had training and so was confident,” Jepkosgei told the media in her second language of English. A

s the 2017 track season ends, and the road racing circuit winds down, Jepkosgei should rest knowing she has dominated the year in all aspects, setting five world records in only two races, and breaking both the 65 and 30-minute road barriers respectively. While many questioned her ability to repeat her performance from Prague five months prior, she solidified her name as the new road-running talent. As 2018 beckons, only time will tell where the new Kenyan Queen of the Road will race to next, and at what expense of the record books.

Men's race: Kimeli's do battle

However, the Prague Grand Prix was not just home to the women's professional race, as it hosted more than 9000 total runners, including the men's professional race entrants. While largely overshadowed by the dominance of Jepkosgei on the women's' side, the men in Prague laid down a course record in their own right, as the two Kimeli's (Bernard and Mathew), did battle with fellow Kenyan and training partner, Rhonex Kipruto.

Breaking away early from the rest of the field, the three Kenyans set a fast pace of their own, without the help of pacemakers. Their breakaway surprised many, as they left behind defending champ Abraham Kipyatich and 20-year-old Jemal Yimer Mekkonen, 4th at this year's 10k world cross country championships of the same distance.

Ultimately, it came down to a sprint over the last kilometer, dictated by both Bernard and Mathew Kimeli. In the end, it was Bernard who would break the tape first, edging out Mathew by just a second and reaffirming himself as the best of year. Bernard Kimeli is the holder of the fastest time in 2017, and finished his year fittingly, back on top. While Sunday's Fith Avenue Mile may overshadow the performances on tap in Prague and track athletes like Usain Bolt or Justin Gatlin may often steal the spotlight, both champions will know that they achieved the goals, going out on top and in style. Standby for Fith Avenue Mile on Sunday afternoon(1:30-2:00 ET. #Prague Grand Prix