Men’s world indoor 3000m record
7:23.81 Lamecha Girma (ETH) Lievin, 15 February 2023

The world indoor 3000m record of 7:23.81 set by Ethiopia’s Lamecha Girma at the Meeting Hauts-de-France Pas-de-Calais, a World Athletics Indoor Tour Gold event, on 15 February has been ratified.

Girma beat Spain’s Mohamed Katir in the thrilling race in Lievin, France, and both athletes dipped under the previous world record of 7:24.90 set by Kenya’s Daniel Komen in Budapest on 6 February 1998, Katir finishing second in a European record of 7:24.68.

Girma, who claimed world 3000m steeplechase silver medals in Doha and Oregon, as well as Olympic silver in Tokyo and world indoor 3000m silver in Belgrade, has since made history in the 3000m steeplechase, too, running 7:52.11* on a remarkable night in Paris last week.

In Lievin, the leaders were paced through 1000m in 2:28.49 – right on schedule for the record. As Girma took over, the clock showed 4:58.38 as he passed 2000m and he went on to race to a time of 7:23.81, taking more than a second off Komen’s 25-year-old mark.

It was fourth time lucky in Lievin for Girma, who had contested the 3000m at the meeting the previous three years. In 2020 he missed out on a top-three finish. In 2021 he ran 7:27.98 – one of the fastest times in history, but he still finished some way behind his compatriots Getnet Wale and Selemon Barega. Girma then won in 2022, but was a couple of seconds shy of his PB.

In 2023, Girma achieved his aim.

“I am so happy with this result,” he said. “I was talking about this world record attempt for the past three days. My brother is my coach. He told me I had it in me and of course I believed him. I felt really good in training and it was my best form ever, plus the crowd was very supportive today.

“The pacers and the Wavelight were perfect – it all clicked. I have raced here several times in this meeting. The atmosphere and the crowd never disappoint. I hope the record stays for a long time.”

World Athletics

*Subject to the usual ratification procedure

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