Ethiopia's Tirunesh Dibaba will attempt to become the first athlete to win three gold medals over 10,000-meters, her agent tells LetsRun.com.
“Tirunesh is training well,” agent Mark Wetmore wrote. “The plan right now is the 10000m [not the marathon, at the Olympics]. She should run 1-2 indoor races and then prepare for the 10000m early in the outdoor season.”
Dibaba, 30, is expected to return to competition after giving birth to a baby boy in Atlanta, Ga. in March. Her comeback will begin with select indoor races before running the 10,000-meters during the outdoor season.
In her 11 races at the 10,000-meter distance, Dibaba has never lost.
Watch Dibaba's gold medal run from London below:
At the 2012 Olympics in London, Dibaba won the 10,000-meter run in 30:20.75 to capture her second gold medal. Olympic legends Paavo Nurmi, Emil Zatopek, Lasse Viren, Haile Gebrselassie, Kenenisa Bekele and Derartu Tulu own two gold medals each respectively. No athlete has won three over the distance.
Dibaba won gold in the 10,000-meter run at the 2013 IAAF World Championships in Moscow before using 2014 to focus on debuting in the marathon. Dibaba finished third at the 2014 London Marathon as she ran 2:20:35 for her debut over 26.2 miles.
In her absence, her younger sister, Genzebe, has risen to stardom by setting indoor world records and shattering the women's 1,500-meter record during teh outdoor season. After winning gold in the women's 1,500-meter run at last summer's outdoor track and field championship, Genzebe Dibaba was named the IAAF women's athlete of the year.
Last year's world leading time of 30:49.68 set by Ethiopia's Gelete Burka is nearly a full minute slower than Dibaba's world record and personal best of 29:54.66 from the 2008 Olympics in Beijing. The average of her 10 best 10,000-meter times, 30:43.96, is faster than the world's best time from 2015.
- Christopher Chavez