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The Internet reacts to the 10,000m record that rocked the running world

Ethiopia's Almaz Ayana had one of the most incredible runs in Olympic history on Friday in the women's 10,000m. Here's how the Internet reacted.

Almaz Ayana

The first athletics final of the Rio Olympics turned out to be one of the greatest long distance races in history. Ethiopian Almaz Ayana ran an incredible 29:17.46 to win the women’s 10,000m in Rio to break the longstanding world record.

The previous 10,000m world record stood for 23 years and was widely considered “dirty” as the record holder later admitted to being an “unwilling participant” in state-sponsored doping in China.

See Canadian Running‘s full recap of the race here.

Fans of the sport were quick to chime in on Twitter about the record. Friday’s 10,000m was just the Ethiopian 24-year-old’s second major attempt at the distance and she bettered her previous best by 50 seconds. Ayana broke the 1993 world record by 14 seconds and is one of the few women to have ever run under 30 minutes. To be fair, three other women broke 30 minutes on Friday morning in Rio.

“Almaz Ayana’s 29:17 for 10,000m,” reads one tweet. “We can’t accuse because there’s no evidence and we can’t believe because there’s no trust.”

The record comes at a sensitive time for track and field as the entire Russian team was banned from Rio for its doping programme. Overall, the race was fast as 18 athletes set lifetime bests including an American record. Canadians Natasha Wodak and Lanni Marchant both finished in the top-25.

Video of the finish

Canadian Running asked followers their thoughts on the legitimacy of today’s run. As of 2:20 p.m. EDT, 67 per cent of voters believe that the record is not clean. “Not clean” refers to the use of performance-enhancing drugs.

Ayana has never failed a drug test though East African nations have been criticized for its lack of drug testing procedures.

American Alan Webb posted an interesting spreadsheet on Twitter today comparing American Molly Huddle’s performance to Ayana’s. His argument is that the comparison makes Ayana’s performance seem more believable in relation to her 5,000m personal bests.

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