Yehualaw breaks African all-comers’ 10km record

Yehualaw breaks African all-comers’ 10km record

Yehualaw breaks African all-comers' 10km record
Yehualaw breaks African all-comers’ 10km record at Great Ethiopia Run at 2350m altitude

Yalemzerf Yehualaw, the world half marathon bronze medalist, kicked off her 2022 season with a win at the Total Energies Great Ethiopian Run 10km, breaking her own course record by more than a minute with a time of 30:14.

Her run is all the more astounding because it takes place in Addis Ababa, which is 2350 meters above sea level. Not only is her run the fastest 10km ever recorded at altitude, but it also beats Sheila Chelangat’s African all-comers record of 30:55 established in Port Gentil, Gabon, in 2019.

Gemechu Dida won in 27:22, smashing the long-standing men’s race record of 28:19 set by Deriba Merga in 2006.


Yehualaw, who set the previous race record of 31:55 in 2019, came into the race eager to impress after having to withdraw from the Valencia 10km just two weeks ago. Today she ran a smart race, making her break from long-time leader Girmawit Gebregziabiher, the 2018 world U20 5000m bronze medallist, just past the 7.5km mark after cresting the hill near the National Palace.

At the 9km turn at Urael Church, Yehuawlaw accelerated dramatically and pulled clear of her rival, cruising to the finish line to win by 12 seconds from Gebregziabiher, who clocked 30:26. Double world U20 medallist Melknat Wedu, still just 17 years of age, finished third in 30:41 – the fastest 10km in history by an U20 athlete.

Last December Yehualaw went to second on the world all-time list for the half marathon with her 1:03:51 clocking in Valencia. During that race, she covered the first 10km section in 29:45. That run, combined with today’s performance at altitude, suggests the 22-year-old is capable of a much quicker time in a standalone 10km race at sea level.

The men’s race was much closer, with six athletes still in contention in the final 500 metres. In the end it was Dida who took a surprise victory over former Dubai Marathon champion Getaneh Molla with Boki Diriba finishing third as two seconds separated the podium finishers.

As was the case in the women’s race, Dida’s winning time of 27:22 is the fastest 10km ever recorded at altitude. It was also just six seconds shy of the African all-comers’ record of 27:16 set by Joshua Cheptegei in Durban in 2018.


The highest-placed non-Ethiopian athlete was Kenya’s Cornelius Kibet Kemboi, who finished sixth in 27:37. A total of 17,600 runners finished the mass race.

Leading results

1 Yalemzerf Yehualaw (ETH) 30:14
2 Girmawit Gebrzihair (ETH) 30:26
3 Melknat Wedu (ETH) 30:41
4 Gete Alemayehu (ETH) 31:03
5 Bosena Mulate (ETH) 31:14
6 Hawi Feyisa (ETH) 31:15
7 Birtukan Wolde (ETH) 31:19
8 Anchinalu Desse (ETH) 31:35
9 Mebrat Gidey (ETH) 31:39
10 Ayenaddis Teshome (ETH) 31:46

1 Gemechu Dida (ETH) 27:22
2 Getaneh Molla (ETH) 27:23
3 Boki Diriba (ETH) 27:24
4 Moges Tuemay (ETH) 27:29
5 Getachew Masresha (ETH) 27:31
6 Cornelius Kibet Kemboi (KEN) 27:37
7 Teresa Ggnakola (ETH) 27:41
8 Solomon Berihun (ETH) 27:53
9 Ashenafi Kiros (ETH) 27:58
10 Antenayehu Dagnachew (ETH) 28:03

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July 2022
  1. Ibrahim, I’m proud of you. I pray you reach where ever you want to 🙏🏽🤲🏽📿 I hope to see you…

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