Relatively unheralded Shuru Bulo sprinted to victory in a world youth leading time of 9:01.12 to deliver the first gold medal for Ethiopia on Day One of the IAAF World Youth Championships, Cali 2015 in Colombia on Wednesday.Bulo, not only upsets her much fancied team-mate Letesenbet Gidey, she becomes just the second Ethiopian to triumph in this event, after Gotytom Gebreselase four years ago in Lille.
The Kenyans have traditionally dominated this race – winning gold six out of eight times in the event’s history – and when the gun fired inside the Pascual Guerrero Stadium, their duo of Emily Chebet Kipchumba and Sheila Chelangat made their intentions clear from the start.
Kipchumba, with Chelangat running on her shoulder, raced straight to the front and took the field through 1000m in a steady 3:01.38.
At that point, the Ethiopians were content to play the waiting game, Gidey sheltering on the inside behind the Kenyans with Bulo running alongside her.
After all her front-running, Kenya’s national junior champion Kipchumba was rewarded with a silver medal for her efforts, finishing in 9:02.92.
The battle for the Cali 2015 bronze was won by Chelangat, who edged world junior cross-country champion Gidey in the run to the line, 9:04.54 to 9:04.64.
(Additional reporting by Cathal Dennehy for the IAAF)