Nakaayi stomps to new 800m national record at Los Angeles Grand Prix

Sports -->
Nakaayi stomps to new 800m national record at Los Angeles Grand Prix
Halimah Nakaayi beat Ethiopia's Duguma in a photo finish at the LA Grand Prix to shatter her own national record | Lindsay Mbabazi

Nakaayi's time of one minute, 57.56 seconds shattered the 1:57.78 she powered to in the Silesia Diamond League, Poland, in July last year when she broke the 1:58.00 barrier in the two-lap race.

LOS ANGELES | Doha 2019 world champion Halimah Nakaayi took the Prevegan women's 800m final at the Los Angeles Grand Prix in a photo finish on Saturday.

Nakaayi's time of one minute, 57.56 seconds shattered the 1:57.78 she powered to in the Silesia Diamond League, Poland, in July last year when she broke the 1:58.00 barrier in the two-lap race.

Ethiopia’s Gemiecu Tsige Duguma came second in a photo finish after kicking the last of her heart to the tape to attempt to hold off Nakaayi's surge from the inside.

Duguma led for a significant portion of the race, but Nakaayi stayed close and surged ahead in the final 100 metres to clinch the victory.

This triumph was particularly sweet for Nakaayi, as Duguma had previously beaten her at the 13th African Games in Accra on March 19.

In that contest, Duguma won the gold with a time of 1:57.73, while Nakaayi settled for silver at 1:58.59 in a closely fought race.

Reflecting on her success, Nakaayi emphasized the dedication required to reach the top.

"It’s a sacrifice. You have to stay determined and embrace every moment," Nakaayi said.

"Life has its ups and downs, but in every moment, I stay strong. I’m a believer, and I know whatever happens is God’s plan. I’m focused on what my coach tells me as I prepare for Paris."

The middle distance runner has her sights set on the 2024 Paris Olympics. Despite the pressure, Nakaayi is relishing the journey.

“I can’t say that I’m under pressure. I’m enjoying every moment in life. I’m super excited to take part in the Paris Olympics, but I must continue focusing on training and see what God will bring. I’m looking forward to seeing what God will enable me to do in Paris."

Before Paris, Nakaayi’s next focus is the Diamond League in Eugene on May 25, followed by the Oslo Diamond League on May 30.

Reader's Comments

LATEST STORIES

Museveni hails security for foiling protests
top-stories By Samuel Muhimba
7 hours ago
Museveni hails security for foiling protests
Kalungu coffee trader kidnapped and murdered
top-stories By Zainab Namusaazi Ssengendo
7 hours ago
Kalungu coffee trader kidnapped and murdered
Youth leaders petition UHRC over illegal arrests
justice-law-and-order By Muhamadi Matovu
7 hours ago
Youth leaders petition UHRC over illegal arrests
Flash floods kill two children in Moroto
top-stories By Richard Oyel
7 hours ago
Flash floods kill two children in Moroto