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Burka Bids For Record

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Gelete Burka
Burka - in cross country action - hopes to take world mile record


15 February 2010

World indoor 1500m champion Gelete Burka heads to the Aviva Grand Prix at the Birmingham NIA with the one mile world indoor record in her sights.

Burka, one of only five women to have ever run sub four minutes over 1500m indoors, is in outstanding form following a series of impressive victories on the indoor circuit  this year.

She said: “I’m looking forward to returning to Birmingham as it was at this venue in 2008 where I won the 3000m. I ran against Helen Clitheroe in that race and I’m up against her again in the Mile this weekend.

The Ethiopian is targeting the world record of 4:17.14 minutes, which was set by former Romanian Olympic champion Doina Melinte twenty years ago. And with Burka’s personal best only a second shy of Melinte’s time, another record looks likely to fall in the Midlands venue.

Burka continued:“Training has been going really well and I’m feeling confident and positive about my current performance. The crowd is always brilliant in Birmingham and that’s always great motivation so I’m hoping to run a good race and gain a second win at the NIA on Saturday”.

Fellow Ethiopian Kalkidan Gezahegne, the world junior silver medallist in the 1500m, is also hoping to impress the Birmingham crowd. The 18 year old set a world junior 1500m indoor record of 4.03.28 minutes in Stockholm last week.

Prior to this World Record attempt a unique concept will kick-start the action at the National Indoor Arena for the Aviva Grand Prix this year, when BMX riders and inline skaters take on British High Jumpers in an Extreme High Jump exhibition.  At 12.30 spectators can witness for the first time the meeting of polar opposites traditional athletics and extreme sports; this short event promises to push the boundaries of the High Jump as the rules are swapped for tricks and stunts.

Tickets for the Aviva Grand Prix at the National Indoor Arena, Birmingham on Saturday 20th February are available by phone on 08000 556 056 or online at www.uka.org.uk