Reigning European 1500m and 5000m champion Jakob Ingebrigtsen has confirmed he will contest the U20 race at the IAAF World Cross Country Championships in Aarhus, Denmark on Saturday (30).
Not since 1984 when Spain’s Pere Casacuberta won the title has a European won a medal of any description in the U20 race but the 18-year-old, who won silver and bronze over 1500m and 5000m at the World U20 Championships in Tampere last summer, is confident he will challenge for the gold medal this weekend.
“I have gone back and forth a little bit but my shape is good and I want to run. I would not start at the World Cross Country Championships if I did not think that I could fight for the title. It's a tough World Cross Country Championships race but I'm ready,” Ingebrigtsen said in a story published on the Norsk Friidrett website.
Ingebrigtsen will be making his World Cross Country Championships debut on Saturday but he has been a permanent fixture at the SPAR European Cross Country Championships since 2016, winning an unprecedented hat-trick of titles in the U20 race.
Ingebrigtsen has focused on the indoor campaign this winter which has yielded plentiful success. He set two world indoor U20 1500m records (3:36.21, 3:36.02) in the build-up to the European Athletics Indoor Championships in Glasgow where he won silver in the 1500m and gold in the 3000m.
He also broke the European indoor U20 record in the 3000m heats with 7:51.20 less than two hours after racing in the 1500m heats.