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Tirunesh Dibaba to contest first ever Half Marathon
Newcastle, UK – Three-time Olympic gold medallist Tirunesh Dibaba, after her latest 10,000m victory in last month’s London Games, will turn her attention to winning the Bupa Great North Run on 16 September.
Dibaba will make her debut over the distance from Newcastle to South Shields, where the elite field includes reigning Olympic and World Marathon champions Tikki Gelana and Edna Kiplagat.
Her appearance in the IAAF Gold Label Event is a clear indication that the 27-year-old Ethiopian, after a highly successful track and cross country career, now intends to switch her attention to road racing – including a high profile marathon next spring.
Dibaba has limited experience of road racing, having mainly competed over only 5k in recent years, but in a rare outing at 15k in 2009 she set a World record of 46:28 in Nijmegen.
Now Dibaba is taking the first step forward to emulating the achievements of her cousin Derartu Tulu, who moved from the track to road racing, then proved her legendary status with wins including the Tokyo, London and New York City Marathons.
Britain’s Jo Pavey and Freya Murray, and Portugal’s Jessica Augusto, the 2009 Bupa Great North Run winner in 2009, are also in the field.