Zoo cheetah to race for world record

Sarah the Cheetah
Sarah the Cheetah

Posted by Trina Edwards - email

CINCINNATI, OH (FOX19) - A cheetah at the Cincinnati Zoo will attempt to break the world record for all land mammals, including humans, in the 100-meter dash.

Sarah, the Cincinnati Zoo's 8-year-old female cheetah, will take on Zaza, an 8-year-old female South African cheetah.

Zaza will race first on August 15 at a measured course set by the Athletic Standards of South Africa. She will get three runs, and her time and video of the run will be shared with the Cincinnati Zoo prior to Sarah's run.

Sarah will then attempt to break Zaza's time with three runs of her own on Sept. 9 at Kentucky Speedway, at a measured course certified by Road Running Technical Council of USA Track and Field.

"We are going to run the spots off Zaza," said Cathryn Hilker, founder of the Cincinnati Zoo's Cat Ambassador Program, as a friendly challenge to her South African counterpart, Annie Beckhelling.

"Our Zaza is going to give that cheeky American cat, Sarah, a run for her money," responded Beckhelling.

Moya, one of the Cincinnati Zoo's former ambassadors, who passed away earlier this year, set the 100 meter world record in 2000. Moya bettered his brother's 1999 record a few times, with a final record of 6.60 seconds. Moya's record stood unbroken until his brother Nyana broke it in 2001with a final record of 6.19 seconds in South Africa.

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