Winnie Nanyondo, like many other elite runners, must be feeling a little empty after World Athletics opted to postpone the World Athletics Indoor Championships in Nanjing earlier set for next month to 2021 because of the corona virus in the other Chinese city of Wuhan.
The Ugandan middle-distance runner now will only maintain her plan to keep shape ahead of the Tokyo Olympic Games as features on the on-going global World Athletics Indoor Tour.
And she is some good form. On Tuesday night, Nanyondo broke the 1500m indoor national record (NR) for the second time in a space of four days at the Dusseldorf Indoor Meeting in Germany.
The 26-year-old improved her time to four minutes and 6.13 seconds in third place. "Not bad," an impressed Nanyondo told this paper via phone yesterday.
"She is cruising on well," said her Dutch manager Jurrie van der Velden. It was an improvement from 4:08:06 which she posted in second place behind Ethiopian Axumawit Embaye at the Karlsruhe Meeting on Friday night.
"Yes, two seconds faster," her coach Addy Ruiter remarked,
"Unfortunately, they cancelled the World Indoor Championships because by that time, she would be her best.
"I expect she will run another NR in one of the next races," he added.
In Dusseldorf, Kenyan Beatrice Chepkoech made up for her last-gasp failure in Karlsruhe by winning in a time of 4:02.09. Then Embaye came second in 4:02.96.
Ugandan Nanyondo, who holds four indoor NR over the 800m, 1000m, mile and 1500m, will return to action at the Metz Indoor Meeting in France on Sunday.
DUSSELDORF INDOOR MEETING
WOMEN'S 1500M RESULT
1. Beatrice Chepkoech (KEN) 4:02.09
2. Axumawit Embaye (ETH) 4:02.96
3. Winnie Nanyondo (UGA) 4:06.13
NANYONDO AT A GLANCE
Date of birth: August 23, 1993
Major races: 800m, 1500m
Coach: Addy Ruiter
Kit Sponsor: Nike
Personal Best: 1:58.63 (800m), 3:59.56 (1500m)
Indoor National Record: