Caster Semenya made a victorious return to the track on Tuesday night, winning the women’s 2,000m race at the Meeting de Montreuil in France.
It was the 800m world champion’s first race in nearly six weeks, and her first since the Swiss Supreme Court temporarily lifted her ban from middle-distance events.
Her suspension was expected to be enforced again on June 25, pending the outcome of her appeal against World Athletics regulations restricting athletes with differences of sexual development (DSD).
Semenya clocked 5:38.19 in the five-lap race at the European Outdoor Classic meeting, crossing the line just 0.12 outside the 28-year-old national record of 3:58.07 held by Zola Budd.
With a young Ethiopian contingent pushing the South African all the way, 20-year-old Hawi Feysa finished second in 5:38.66, and former African Championships 1 500m bronze medallist Adanech Anbesa took third place in 5:39.90.
Though her full racing schedule was unclear, Semenya was set to compete in the women’s 3 000m race at the Diamond League meeting in Stanford at the end of this month, in her first international race over seven-and-a-half laps.
Though the Diamond League meeting would be held five days after World Athletics rules were set to be implemented again, the 3 000m event did not fall within the range of distances which were affected by the global body’s DSD regulations.