Tuesday, December 22, 2020

World record ratified for 4x1500m team

The 4x1500m world record of 16:27.02 set by Kimbia’s Elise Cranny and Karissa Schweizer, together with their Bowerman Track Club teammates Colleen Quigley and Shelby Houlihan, has been ratified.

The quartet clocked their time in Portland on 31 July, averaging sub-4:07 legs to smash the previous record of 16:33.58 set by the Kenyan quartet of Mercy Cherono, Faith Kipyegon, Irene Jelegat and Hellen Obiri at the World Relays on 25 May 2014.

Quigley opened with a 4:08 leg and passed the baton to Cranny who ran just inside 4:09.

“Distance relay races are hard to come by in the professional running world so having the ability to go after a world record with three teammates, especially in a year with so much uncertainty, was very special,” Cranny told World Athletics. “Running with that baton in my hand and knowing my teammates are depending on me has always provided a source of additional motivation.”

Schweizer was next, producing a 4:05 split before handing off to Houlihan who sealed the record with a 4:04 final leg.

“To set our minds to something together and successfully complete it during a year that was extremely different from what we imagined and had planned for was something I will forever cherish,” said Cranny.

The news of the ratification capped a fine year for both Cranny and Schweizer, who moved to a new level in 2020 despite all the challenges they faced. Cranny clocked a huge PB of 14:48.02 for 5000m in June, while Schweizer ran lifetime bests over 1500m (4:00.02), 3000m (8:25.70) and 5000m (14:26.34).

Cranny returned to racing in early December by finishing second to Houlihan over 5000m in San Juan Capistrano in California, clocking 15:04.88.

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