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Published: Sun, August 13, 2017
Sport | By Billy Aguilar

USA's Emma Coburn, Courtney Frerichs Pull Off Historic Steeplechase Gold, Silver

USA's Emma Coburn, Courtney Frerichs Pull Off Historic Steeplechase Gold, Silver

Olympic bronze medallist Emma Coburn of the United States cut almost four seconds off the championships record en route to winning the women's 3,000 meters steeplechase at the 2017 IAAF World Championships here.

Coburn, who lives in Boulder, led a stunning one-two sweep for the Americans.

Coburn finished in an American-record time of 9 minutes, 2.58 seconds, while Frerichs set a personal best at 9:03.77.

The run was historic.

Last summer, Coburn earned bronze to become the first US woman to medal in the steeplechase at the Olympics.

These were the fourth and fifth medals for the USA distance runners at the championships in London, including a bronze from Amy Cragg in the marathon, a bronze from Evan Jager in the men's steeplechase and a silver from Jenny Simpson in the 1,500.

Rolling on the ground, still gasping for breath, Courtney Frerichs hugged Emma Coburn and shouted into her ear: "Am I dreaming?"

Coburn and Frerichs stayed with the lead pack for the entire race before racing to the front on the final lap and then putting away the competition in the closing stretch of the race.

Coburn's sister, who unfortunately wasn't able to attend the race, was just as excited, if not more, as you can see in this video.

"My coach (Jerry Schumacher) had told me to just go for it", Frerichs told NBC after the race.

"I never expected to win in that time but I kept pressing". Coburn's victory was also the first Championship record of the event.

The duo came into the race as the biggest threats to Schippers and so it proved as Ta Lou ran the Dutchwoman close but was forced to settle for an agonising silver yet again in 22.08. I didn't expect a medal at halfway. She covered 3,000 meters in a time of 9:02:58 in London at the IAAF World Championships. "Evan (Jager) and I have been in the mix the last couple of years".

Schippers used her long, powerful stride to nudge clear of the rest of the field to claim her fifth World Championships medal.

The 26-year-old could scarcely believe it as she crossed the line before she enjoyed an emotional embrace with silver medallist Frerichs, who had edged clear of Jepkemoi.

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