Caster Semenya Sets New Meeting Record in Monaco
Caster Semenya set a new 800-meter meeting record at the Monaco Diamond League.
It may not be the personal best or World Record but Caster Semenya still re-wrote history books when she took charge from the start to set a new 800-meter meeting record at the Monaco Diamond League.
Caster likes to sit back and follow a pace maker or even the leader in the race but for once, the South African 400 and 800 national track record holder started the race in high gear. She currently holds the fourth fastest time in history and it looks she was determined to go bring the 1:54:25 mark a few seconds down.
Running in the first lane, Semenya sped off into the lead while chased by her long-time rival, Burundian Francine Niyonsaba. She raced away from all the other racers, completing her first lap in 55:76 but was unable to maintain the pace in the second lap.
“It was fantastic, only that the last 100 meters was a little off for me,” beamed Semenya.
“I wasn’t thinking about the World record and it wasn’t on my mind. Today I wanted to break the 1:54 mark but maybe next time.”
At one point, Semenya was on course for a world record but slowed down in the final 200 meters. She finished the second 400 meters in 58.85 to win the race in a time of 1:54:60, bettering her previous Monaco performance of 1:55:27.
The 27-year-old continues to fall short when it comes to the 1:53:28 world record set by Jamilla Kratochvilova in 1983 but on grounds of her steady improvement this year alone, it’s only a matter of time before the Gas-Mashlong-born joins the class of World record holders.
Semenya continues to dominate the 800 meters but may be forced to take medication to reduce her testosterone levels after a ruling from IAAF that will require all athletes classified as hyper-androgynous who race in 400m to 1500m races to take testosterone reducing medication.
She has however appealed to the Court of Arbitration for Sports in Switzerland to make a decision on the IAAF ruling which in a way targets all the races she participates in.
In the 100 meters, Marie Josee Ta Lou of Ivory Coast won in 10.89 while South Africa’s Carina Horn came in seventh at 11:21.
(Photo used from Getty Images)