Coburn, Frerichs complete shock United States one-two in steeplechase

Paris winner

Paris winner

The women's 3000m steeplechase was surprisingly won by American Emma Coburn at the World Athletics Championships in London on Friday night.

Coburn, who lives in Boulder, led a stunning one-two sweep for the Americans. Since former champion Dawn Harper Nelson (season best 12.63) won the heat, the Americans have four in the final and could sweep the medals again - like they did previous year at the Rio de Janeiro Olympics.

The run was historic.

She covered 3,000 meters in a time of 9:02:58 in London at the IAAF World Championships.

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Frerichs, who trains with Portland's Bowerman Track Club, simply stayed on Coburn's hip for the duration of the race, and it paid off as she still had enough kick left to hold off Kenya's Hyvin Kiyeng Jepkemoi, who took the bronze.

Further ahead, Olympic champion and world record holder Ruth Jebet of Bahrain looked in good form, controlling the pace from the front during the middle section of the race. Jepkemoi would take the bronze with Chepkoech ultimately finishing in fourth. But her strong recovery allowed her to just make the final on time. She sealed her victory with a surge after the final water barrier. "My fiancee and coach, Joe [Bosshard], was telling me be really powerful in that last water jump".

In her post race interview, Coburn was "speechless", but managed to get a few words out.

African runners had claimed gold and silver in the women's steeplechase at each of the past three world championships.

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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.

"I felt very comfortable following her (Coburn)". "I knew I had to have a ideal day to get on the podium..."

Miller-Uibo was 0.07 seconds adrift in third place, her bronze medal - her first over this distance at either the Olympic Games or World Championships - offering some consolation from a hard Championships. Kenya's Conseslus Kipruto won gold.

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