On Sunday, September 10, Kenya’s Agnes Ngetich broke the women-only 10-kilometer world record with a time of 29:24 at the World Athletics Elite Label road race in Brasov, Romania.

For Ngetich, this victory is a huge improvement from her disappointing 6th place finish at last month’s World Championships in Budapest, where she didn’t make it to the podium. Still, Ngetich didn’t opt to back down from the race this time and went out and put on an incredible solo run at the Transylvanian 10 km race instead.

Leaving everyone in her wake, the 22-year-old long distance runner completed the first five kilometers in a time of 14:25, which was four seconds quicker than the previous global record for that distance. She then went on to pass the 6.5 kilometer mark in 18:54 and the 8.5 kilometer mark in 24:56 before finishing the race in 29:24. This left everybody in shock, including Ngetich herself, as she did not expect to surpass the 30:01 world record that was set by the late Agnes Tirop in Herzogenaurach in 2021.

Ngetich on her win

“It is quite a surprise to me…I didn’t expect to break the world record. All I ever wanted was a personal best (PB) of 30:00 or 30:02 but to set a new world record in the women’s 10km was the last thing I expected,” said Ngetich.

Ngetich was also asked about her quick start, and she answered that she wasn’t concerned about burning out in the second half of the race.

“No, I was not worried…When the gun went off, I just decided to run and go for it. I started the season on a perfect note with the World Cross Country Championships (in Bathurst, Australia) and so I wanted to close it in the same way. I thank God that it unfolded this way,” she said amidst smiles.

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In addition to Ngetich, another Kenyan long-distance runner also stepped onto the podium that day. Catherine Reline took second place in the race with a time of 30:14. And, the third place was awarded to Uganda’s Joy Cheptoyaek, who crossed the finish line in 30:34.

Track Spice, a famous user on X who’s known to give the latest updates in Track and Field, posted Agnes Ngetich’s latest achievement on the same day. The caption reads:
“Kenya’s Agnes Ngetich shatters the women-only 10km world record* in Brasov as she clocks 29:24 🙌”

The only other woman to have run faster than Ngetich was Ethiopia’s Jelemzerfyehualaw, who ran 29:14 in last year’s mixed race at Castellon and 29:19 in this year’s Valencia race.

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