Marathon World Record Holder Kelvin Kiptum and Coach Perish in Road Accident

Posted by: Watch Athletics

Kenya's Kelvin Kiptum Cheruiyot, a marathon world record holder, tragically passed away on 11 February 2024.

Kelvin Kiptum and his coach, Gervais Hakizimana, tragically died in a road traffic accident near Kaptagat, Kenya, on 11 February 2024. The accident occurred at 11pm when Kiptum, who was driving, lost control of the car, causing it to roll. This unfortunate event resulted in the deaths of both Kiptum and Hakizimana, while a female passenger was injured​​.

Born on 2 December 1999, he was celebrated for his extraordinary achievements in marathon running. Kiptum made history as the only person to run the marathon under two hours and one minute in a record-eligible race, a milestone. Throughout his career, he ran three of the seven fastest marathons in history, leaving a significant mark on the sport​​.

Kelvin Kiptum had set his sights on an ambitious goal for the 2024 Rotterdam Marathon, aiming to break the two-hour barrier, a feat that would mark a historic milestone in marathon running. After a phenomenal year in 2023, where he shattered the men's marathon world record by finishing the Chicago Marathon in 2:00:35, Kiptum was eyeing the Rotterdam Marathon on April 14, 2024, as the stage for his next big achievement​​​​.

World Athletics President Sebastian Coe expressed profound sorrow upon hearing about the tragic deaths of Kelvin Kiptum and his coach, Gervais Hakizimana. In his statement, Coe said, "We are shocked and deeply saddened to learn of the devastating loss of Kelvin Kiptum and his coach, Gervais Hakizimana. On behalf of all World Athletics, we send our deepest condolences to their families, friends, teammates, and the Kenyan nation. It was only earlier this week in Chicago, the place where Kelvin set his extraordinary marathon World Record, that I was able to officially ratify his historic time. An incredible athlete leaving an incredible legacy, we will miss him dearly."

This quote underscores the impact Kiptum had on the world of athletics and the sense of loss felt by the global sports community. His achievements, culminating in the world record set in Chicago, marked him as an extraordinary athlete whose legacy will be remembered. Coe's message reflects the sentiment of many in athletics and beyond, highlighting Kiptum's remarkable contributions to the sport and the deep void his passing leaves.

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