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Athletics at the 2012 London Summer Games:

Women's 5,000 metres

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Host City: London, Great Britain
Venue(s): Olympic Stadium, Olympic Park, Stratford, London
Date Started: August 7, 2012
Date Finished: August 10, 2012

Gold: ETH Meseret Defar
Silver: KEN Vivian Cheruiyot
Bronze: ETH Tirunesh Dibaba


This was expected to be a race between the Kenyan and Ethiopian women, and with those six runners placing 1-6, they did not disappoint. The pre-race favorites were 2004 gold medalist [Meseret Defar] of Ethiopia and Kenyan [Vivian Cheruiyot]. But [Tirunesh Dibaba] (ETH) had won the 5/10K double in Beijing, and had already repeated in the 10K in London and had to be watched closely.

As is common in Olympic distance finals, the pace was hideously slow, with the two African nation's teams running together in a team tactic. At 3,200 metres, Dibaba picked up the pace, stringing out the field, and only Britain's [Julia Bleasdale] would be able to hang on to the pace set by the African women. But she let go at 4,200 metres, as the Kenyan and Ethiopian runners set out to do battle. On the final lap, Dibaba still led, followed by Defar, Cheruiyot, and [Sally Jepkosgei Kipyego] (KEN), silver medalist from the 10,000. But by the homestretch Dibaba was spent and faded, Defar coming on to win her second gold medal in the event, with Cheruiyot earning silver, and Dibaba nipping Kipyego for the bronze. The two teams alternated their runners, with Ethiopia placing 1-3-5, and Kenya 2-4-6. Bleasdale placed eighth, passed on the last lap by her teammate [Jo Pavey].

View a Phase of this EventFinal StandingsFinalRound One

Final Standings

Rank Athlete Age Team NOC Medal
1 Meseret Defar 28 Ethiopia ETH Gold
2 Vivian Cheruiyot 28 Kenya KEN Silver
3 Tirunesh Dibaba 27 Ethiopia ETH Bronze
4 Sally Kipyego 26 Kenya KEN
5 Gelete Burka 26 Ethiopia ETH
6 Viola Kibiwot 28 Kenya KEN
7 Jo Pavey 38 Great Britain GBR
8 Julia Bleasdale 30 Great Britain GBR
9 Olga Golovkina 25 Russia RUS
10 Shitaye Eshete 22 Bahrain BRN
11 Molly Huddle 27 United States USA
12 Tejitu Daba 20 Bahrain BRN
13 Yelena Nagovitsyna 29 Russia RUS
14 Julie Culley 30 United States USA
15 Elena Romagnolo 29 Italy ITA
7 h1 r1/2 Silvia Weissteiner 33 Italy ITA
8 h1 r1/2 Kayoko Fukushi 30 Japan JPN
9 h1 r1/2 Barbara Parker 29 Great Britain GBR
10 h1 r1/2 Fionnuala Britton-McCormack 27 Ireland IRL
10 h2 r1/2 Hitomi Niiya 24 Japan JPN
11 h1 r1/2 Liudmyla Kovalenko 23 Ukraine UKR
11 h2 r1/2 Almensh Belete 22 Belgium BEL
12 h1 r1/2 Judit Plá 34 Spain ESP
12 h2 r1/2 Kim Conley 26 United States USA
13 h1 r1/2 Karoline Bjerkeli Grøvdal 22 Norway NOR
13 h2 r1/2 Mika Yoshikawa 27 Japan JPN
14 h1 r1/2 Dudu Karakaya 26 Turkey TUR
14 h2 r1/2 Nadia Ejjafini 31 Italy ITA
15 h1 r1/2 Eloise Wellings 29 Australia AUS
15 h2 r1/2 Sheila Reid 22 Canada CAN
16 h1 r1/2 Sandra López 28 Mexico MEX
16 h2 r1/2 Zakia Mrisho 36 Tanzania TAN
17 h2 r1/2 Layeş Abdullayeva 21 Azerbaijan AZE
18 h2 r1/2 Roxana Elisabeta Bîrcă 24 Romania ROU
AC h1 r1/2 Nadia Noujani 30 Morocco MAR