Peres Jepchirchir sets her sights on capturing a third world title in the half marathon, after previously securing gold in both 2016 (Cardiff) and 2020 (Gdynia). The athlete's stellar record includes an Olympic gold from Tokyo 2021 and victories at the New York and Boston World Marathon Majors in 2021 and 2022, respectively. Her third-place finish in London last April solidifies her as a formidable contender.
Jepchirchir's aspirations extend to matching the achievements of Tegla Loroupe, Paula Radcliffe, and Lornah Kipglagat, each having earned three world half marathon gold medals.
Irine Jepchumba Kirmais will accompany Jepchirchir on the Kenyan team, having secured her spot with a victory at the Kenyan Trials in Nairobi and a fourth-place finish in the 10000 meters at the World Championships in Budapest. With the fastest entry time recorded at the Barcelona Half Marathon last February, Jepchumba is another strong contender.
Other noteworthy athletes include Margaret Chelimo Kipkemboi, with a personal best set in Barcelona in 2022, and Catherine Relin, who finished third in Barcelona last February, improving her personal best to 1:05:39.
Leading the Ethiopian team is Tsigie Gebrselama, holder of the world cross country silver medal from Bathurst and a personal best time of 1:05:46 in Valencia. Her teammates, Ftaw Zeray and 19-year-old Yalemget Yaregal, have also showcased impressive personal best times.
German athlete Konstanze Klosterhalfen returns for her second half marathon race, after a triumphant win in Valencia a year ago. Her past accolades include a world bronze medal in Doha 2019 and a European gold in Munich 2022 in the 5000 meters.
The field is further enriched with European athletes such as Samantha Harrison from Great Britain and Sofia Yaremchuk from Italy, both boasting improved personal bests.
Representing the US is 40-year-old Sara Hall, whose recent personal best of 1:07:15 in Houston and second-place finish at the London Marathon in 2020 position her as a notable competitor. Other sub-1:10 performers include Isobel Batt-Doyle from Australia, Mekdes Woldu from France, and Glenrose Xaba from South Africa, adding to the intense competition anticipated in the upcoming race.