“It was falling, it was falling, it was falling…” France international Alice Finot was caught in a massive fall during the dangerous and chaotic start of the 10km from Valencia on Sunday, where Ethiopian Yalemzerf Yehualaw came close to his own world record.
“Thank God it’s okay! But I saw lots of burnt girls like after falling off a bike, they were crushed to the ground. Luckily, I was not in contact with the concrete, I was intertwined”, told AFP the Frenchwoman Alice Finot, world finalist in the 3,000 m steeplechase last summer.
In Valence, this reputedly very fast 10 km brought together an impressive line-up of international runners on Sunday, in addition to amateur runners of all levels, for more than 12,000 participants in total, normally divided into “airlocks” according to their speed.
“There is no more respect”
“The organization got it wrong. They cleared the amateur airlock too early, people rushed to the line. Security got in front of them to make room for the elites in front, but initially it exploded. There was a wave, it was falling, it was falling, it was falling. The starting line was not wide enough, “lamented Finot, who was able to get up and finish the race. “People come to get a time, there is no more respect. Everyone thinks about their little time after doing their little training…”
Yalemzerf Yehualaw won the race
In front, Yalemzerf Yehualaw fell seconds short of her own world record by winning the race in 29:18 minutes. The 23-year-old Ethiopian had set the world record for the distance in 29:14 in February 2022 at Castellón (Spain). On a fast course, she passed in 14 min 47 at mid-race helped by pacemakers before accelerating again to largely win the race with a pace close to 2 min 55 per kilometer on average. She had the second-best performance ever over the distance.