Caster Semenya dominates African Championships, breaks national 400m record
South African middle-distance runner Caster Semenya has been in dominant form at the African Championships in Asaba, Nigeria, breaking the national record in the women’s 400m.
The two-time Olympic champion clocked a time of 49.96 seconds which was enough to see her to victory in the final of the 400m event.
On Sunday, the 27-year-old celebrated yet another victory, dominating the 800m event where she posted a championship record of 1 minute, 56.06 seconds.
It was Semenya’s 27th successive 800m win, a distance over which she has remained unbeaten since 2015.
"Today was just to see how we could run after a hard 400 metres, which wasn't a bad thing to do – to test my limits after running 49 [seconds]. And 1:56.06, that's a beautiful time. I couldn't have asked for more," she said after her 800m victory.
The runner confirmed she would compete at both distances at next month's Continental Cup in Ostrava, Czech Republic.
The world leader in the women’s 800m event, Semenya will be forced to reduce her blood testosterone level under a new International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF) rule which comes into force on November 1.
The newly adopted regulations require any female athlete who has a Difference of Sexual Development (DSD) to reduce blood testosterone level to below 5 nmol/L to be eligible to compete internationally.
Semenya has a medical condition characterized by excessive levels of testosterone, which some pundits see as an unfair advantage over her rivals.