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Articles tagged #Joshua Cheptegei
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Joshua Cheptegei was born under an avocado tree, Cheptegei’s story is not merely a testament to his incredible ability but of the inspirational power of sport

Joshua Cheptegei was born under an avocado tree in Cheptendan, Kapchorwa. “The mothers those days were strong,” he jokes.

His favorite pastime growing up was swinging on the ropes of some “very big tree that was near our home. You could spend the whole day swinging.”

And his dream was to be a teacher, just like dad. Talent, however, has a way of messing up things, of overturning plans, reshaping destinies. Cheptegei, a would-be literature teacher is now a multi-millionaire superstar world athlete, on track to being one of the greatest sportsmen Uganda has ever seen.

Life is obviously the best imitation of art and Cheptegei’s story is scarcely believable even if its best chapters may be yet scripted. 

He is the reigning world cross country champion, and 5000m and 10,000m Commonwealth champion, 2017 IAAF World Athletics Championships silver medalist and the fastest man over 15km ever recorded.

“I dream of becoming a world record holder in the 5000m, 10,000m and later the half marathon and maybe also the full marathon,” he says.

Can he do it? Perhaps the question is, who can bet against him?

Cheptegei’s story is not merely a testament to his incredible ability but of the inspirational power of sport.

One of nine children, Cheptegei was on the way to a normal, rain-soaked Sebei existence. With the modest earnings from his mother’s agriculture and the father’s teaching career, Cheptegei would have, in the best-case scenario, completed university and settled for a life as a Shakespeare expositor.

“My father wasn’t impressed when I first told him I wanted to become a professional athlete,” Cheptegei recalls.

“He wanted me to first finish school. That time I had just finished high school. I was due for a Bachelor’s degree in education. Dad wanted me to become a literature teacher”.

Cheptegei joined university but kept running, finishing second in the 2014 Inter-University Games. He also finished second in the national cross country championship, which he followed up by winning the World University Cross Country.

The breakthrough came at the U-20 World Athletics Championships in Oregon, where he won gold in the 10,000m.

The rewards Cheptegei was consequently invited to State House and received a car and sh20m from president Yoweri Museveni. It was the runner’s first big payday but certainly not biggest nor the last.

Subsequent victories in major world races, have seen Cheptegei etch towards the sh1b mark in career earnings. Imagine that!

“He is an extremely rich man,” said a top athletics official who once coached Cheptegei.

Barring any major injury setbacks, Cheptegei is poised to reap success from 5000m, 10,000m, world cross country, 10km, 15km and half marathon races for the foreseeable future. That means more prize money and sponsorship earnings not to mention government rewards and Police promotions.

And all of this because of the still oft-devalued path called sports.

“There is a need to support talent whenever it is realized,” Joshua counsels “Whether it is your child or any other person support them. It does not matter what sport it is. It is also the same for talents like music. Once you realize any talent invest in it.”

(11/13/2019) ⚡AMP
by Charles Mutebi
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Kenyan Marathon world-record holder Eliud Kipchoge is among the five finalists named for the male athlete of the year

Eliud Kipchoge leads the nominees list, Kenya's marathon man, Eliud Kipchoge has made the list, as the 34-year old looks to bag his second IAAF Male World Athlete award in succession. In October 2019, Kipchoge became the first person on the planet to complete a full marathon in under two hours.

The Kenyan world record holder, who has also been labelled as the greatest marathoner in the history of the sport, completed the 'INEOS 1:59 Challenge' in October. In successfully completing the 9.6km circuit, the 34-year old became the first marathoner to break the two-hour barrier, thus writing his name in the history books. 

Eliud Kipchoge´s contenders.- Uganda’s Joshua Chepetegei, the 10,000m world champion was also one of the five finalists apart from Eliud Kipchoge.

Chepetegei won the World 10,000m title in a world-leading time of 26:48.36 and also won the Diamond League 5000m title. Americans Sam Kendricks and Noah Lyles are also up for winning the award. Sam Kendricks won the World Pole Vault title, clearing a world-leading 6.06m to win the US title.

He also won 12 of his 17 outdoor competitions, including the Diamond League final. Noah Lyles, meanwhile, has the world 200m and 4x100m titles to boast of, aside from running a world-leading 19.50 in Lausanne to move to fourth on the world all-time list. Lyles also won the Diamond League titles at 100m and 200m. 

Norwegian hurdler Karsten Warholm completes the list of the nominees for the Male World Athlete 2019 award. Warholm is undefeated indoors and outdoors at all distances, including the Diamond League final and the European Indoor Championships. He also clocked a clocked world-leading 46.92, the second-fastest time in history. 

(11/13/2019) ⚡AMP
by Colin DCunha
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BMW Berlin Marathon

BMW Berlin Marathon

The story of the BERLIN-MARATHON is a story of the development of road running. When the first BERLIN-MARATHON was started on 13th October 1974 on a minor road next to the stadium of the organisers‘ club SC Charlottenburg Berlin 286 athletes had entered. The first winners were runners from Berlin: Günter Hallas (2:44:53), who still runs the BERLIN-MARATHON today, and...

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Uganda´s Joshua Cheptegei will target 10K world record in Valencia

Joshua Cheptegei of Uganda, the reigning world champion over 10,000m as well as cross-country, announced he will be looking to set a new world record at the 10K Valencia Trinidad Alfonso, to be held in conjunction with the Valencia Marathon on December 1.

Cheptegei already holds the world record in the 15K, which he set a year ago in the Netherlands, winning the Seven Hills race in Nijmegen for the fourth time, in 41:05. Cheptegei is 23.

In winning the 10,000m in Doha on October 6 in a world-leading 26:48.3, the Ugandan won his country’s first-ever gold medal in that event, though he also took gold in the 2018 Commonwealth Games over both 5,000m and 10,000m and set a new Games Record in the 10.

He is the only person besides the great Kenenisa Bekele to win both the world cross-country title and the world or Olympic 10,000m title in the same year (Bekele did it three times in a row–in 2003, 2004 and 2005).

The current 10K world record was set by Leonard Patrick Komon of Kenya at 26:44 at Utrecht in the Netherlands in 2010, and it was Komon who held the previous record in the 15K also.

Cheptegei is a member of the NN Running Team, which also includes marathon world record-holder Eliud Kipchoge and several of the men who paced him at the INEOS 1:59 Challenge, where he successfully ran the marathon distance in 1:59:40.

Cheptegei has been nominated for IAAF Male Athlete of the Year, the first Ugandan to be honored in this way.

(11/08/2019) ⚡AMP
by Anne Francis
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10k Valencia Trinidad Alfonso

10k Valencia Trinidad Alfonso

On the same day of the marathon, this parallel event of 10 kilometers is celebrated in the city of Valencia, Spain. A distance within reach of all runners. Ideal for the popular runner and for friends or companions who come to Valencia and do not resist the temptation to run. Participation is limited to 8,500 runners. ...

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NOMINEES ANNOUNCED FOR MALE WORLD ATHLETE OF THE YEAR 2019

This week marks the opening of the voting process for the 2019 World Athletes of the Year ahead of the World Athletics Awards 2019 in Monaco on Saturday 23 November.

The IAAF is pleased to confirm a list of 11 nominees for Male World Athlete of the Year who were selected by an international panel of athletics experts, comprising representatives from all six continental areas of the IAAF. The nominations of 11 athletes reflects the remarkable range of exceptional performances that the sport has witnessed this year, at the IAAF World Athletics Championships in Doha, and in the Diamond League and in road and cross country events. The IAAF’s Competition Performance Ranking show that the World Championships in Doha was the highest quality competition in the history of the event.

The nominees for 2019 Male World Athlete of the Year are (in alphabetical order):

Donavan Brazier (USA) - won world 800m title in a championship record of 1:42.34, won Diamond League title, won four of his five outdoor 800m races

Christian Coleman (USA) - won world 100m title in a world-leading 9.76, won world 4x100m title in a world-leading 37.10, won four of his five races at 100m

Joshua Cheptegei (UGA) - won world cross-country title in Aarhus, won world 10,000m title in a world-leading 26:48.36, won Diamond League 5000m title

Timothy Cheruyiot (KEN) - won world 1500m title, won Diamond League 1500m title, won 10 of his 11 outdoor races across all distances,

Steven Gardiner (BAH) - won world 400m title in 43.48, undefeated all year over 400m,  ran world-leading 32.26 indoors over 300m

Sam Kendricks (USA) - won world pole vault title,  cleared a world-leading 6.06m to win the US title,  won 12 of his 17 outdoor competitions, including the Diamond League final

Eliud Kipchoge (KEN) - won London Marathon in a course record of 2:02:37, ran 1:59:40.2 for 42.195km in Vienna

Noah Lyles (USA) -won world 200m and 4x100m titles, ran a world-leading 19.50 in Lausanne to move to fourth on the world all-time list, won Diamond League titles at 100m and 200m

Daniel Stahl (SWE) - won the world discus title,  threw a world-leading 71.86m to move to fifth on the world all-time list,  won 13 of his 16 competitions, including the Diamond League final

Christian Taylor (USA) - won the world triple jump title, won Diamond League title,  won 10 of his 14 competitions

Karsten Warholm (NOR) - won the world 400m hurdles title, undefeated indoors and outdoors at all distances, including at the Diamond League final and the European Indoor Championships, clocked world-leading 46.92, the second-fastest time in history, A three-way voting process will determine the finalists.

The IAAF Council and the IAAF Family will cast their votes by email, while fans can vote online via the IAAF's social media platforms. Individual graphics for each nominee will be posted on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram this week; a 'like' on Facebook and Instagram or a retweet on Twitter will count as one vote.

The IAAF Council’s vote will count for 50% of the result, while the IAAF Family’s votes and the public votes will each count for 25% of the final result.

Voting for the Male World Athlete of the Year closes on 4 November. At the conclusion of the voting process, five men and five women finalists will be announced by the IAAF.

The male and female World Athletes of the Year will be announced live on stage at the World Athletics Awards 2019.

(11/02/2019) ⚡AMP
by IAAF
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Eliud Kipchoge will have a total of 42 pacemakers as he seeks to run the marathon in under two hours at the INEOS 1:59 Challenge

World record holder and Olympic marathon champion Eliud Kipchoge will have a total of 42 pacemakers as he seeks to run the marathon in under two hours at the INEOS 1:59 Challenge in Vienna, Austria in October.

More than half the pacemakers tasked with helping Kipchoge become the first man to break the two-hour mark either live and train in Kenya or have roots from the country.

"13 more pacemakers have been confirmed to help Kipchoge in his bid to become the first human to run a sub-two hour marathon at the INEOS 1:59 Challenge in Vienna in October," organizers said in a statement on Wednesday.

All 13 of the pacers took part in testing for the challenge in Vienna at the start of September and will return for the real thing in three weeks' time with the aim of helping Kipchoge make history.

The other named pacers in this group include:

Eric Kiptanui of Kenya, who holds the sixth-fastest half-marathon time (58:42) from the 2018 Berlin Half-Marathon, Another slate of 13 elite runners has been named who will take turns pacing Eliud Kipchoge to what the world hopes will be the first-ever sub-two-hour marathon next month in Vienna, and it includes Marius Kipserem of Kenya, who set a new course record of 2:04:11 at the 2019 Rotterdam Marathon.

The other named pacers in this group include:

Eric Kiptanui of Kenya, who holds the sixth-fastest half-marathon time (58:42) from the 2018 Berlin Half-Marathon.

Micah Kogo of Kenya, 10000m bronze medallist at the 2008 Olympics, Chala Regasa of Ethiopia, who set a course record of 27:23 at the Valencia 10K Ibercaja in January, which is this year’s sixth-fastest time in the world over 21.1K. 

Gideon Kipketer of Kenya, who set his marathon PB of 2:05:51 at Tokyo in 2017, where he finished second.

Stanley Kebenei of USA, who raced the World Cross Country Championships in Denmark in March, and who finished second in the USATF 3,000m steeplechase national championships and will have just competed at the World Championships in Doha when he returns to Vienna.

Shadrack Koech of Kazakhstan ran a PB in the 10K of 28:22 in the Netherlands this year, and a PB over 10,000m of 28:24:40, also set this year. 

Moses Koech of Kenya finished third in 27:46 behind Joshua Cheptegei and Julien Wanders in the Durban 10K last year.

Thomas Ayeko of Uganda was part of the team that won gold at the Cross-Country World Championships in Denmark this year. He was fourth in the 5,000m at the Commonwealth Games in 2018 and has a half-marathon PB of 60:26.

Emmanuel Bett of Kenya has a 10,000m PB of 26:51:16 and a half-marathon PB of 60:08.

Timothy Toroitich of Uganda made the final of the 10,000m at last year’s Commonwealth Games, after winning bronze at the African Championships. He also won bronze at the first Commonwealth Games half-marathon in Cardiff.

Kaan Kigen Ozbilen of Turkey, who changed his name in 2015 (he is the former Mike Kipruto Kigen). He won silver medals in the 5,000m and 10,000m at the 2006 African Championships representing Kenya. He holds national records for Turkey in both the half-marathon (59:48) and the marathon (2:05:27). He also won a silver medal in the European Championships half-marathon in 2016.

(09/22/2019) ⚡AMP
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INEOS 1:59 Challenge

INEOS 1:59 Challenge

Mankind have constantly sought to reach new frontiers and to achieve the impossible. From Edmund Hillary reaching the summit of Mount Everest to Roger Bannister’s four-minute mile to Felix Baumgartner jumping from space we have frequently redefined the limits of human achievement and broken new barriers previously seen as simply impossible. After the four-minute mile and the ten second 100m...

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Uganda’s Felix Chemonges goal is to win the Scotiabank Toronto Waterfront Marathon

No Ugandan runner has ever won the Scotiabank Toronto Waterfront Marathon a blemish which Felix Chemonges wishes to eradicate October 20th on the race’s 30th anniversary.

"My goal is to win the race and improve on my personal best as I want to get selection with my Toronto performance for Tokyo 2020," he explains. "My future goals are to be a world class star."

"I have only run two marathons before, which were smaller marathons. Both times I finished second. Toronto will be my first big one and I am really looking forward to it."

In recent years, beginning with the inspiring victory of Stephen Kiprotich at the 2012 London Olympics, Ugandans have strived to match the competitive results of their East African rivals from Ethiopia and Kenya. Now, with young athletes like the 23-year-old Chemonges (he turns 24 on October 10th), the country’s fortunes are indeed in good hands.

One of those aforementioned second place finishes came at the 2019 Linz (Austria) Marathon back in April and yielded a personal best of 2:09:19 but since then he has also lowered his PB at the half marathon distance with a 61:03 clocking in Zwolle Netherlands. That is, indeed, encouraging as he builds towards the Scotiabank Toronto Waterfront Marathon - an IAAF Gold Label race.

Netherlands based Global Sports Communications which represents world half marathon record holder Geoffrey Kamworor, world marathon record holder Eliud Kipchoge (both from Kenya) and Ethiopia’s world 5000m and 10000m record holder Kenenisa Bekele, in addition to Kiprotich, operates a training camp in Uganda where Chemonges trains.

It is in Kapchorwa in Eastern Uganda which is around 50km from the border with Kenya. The elevation is roughly 2000 metres above sea level but they can reach even higher elevations nearby - perfect for training. "I live in the camp then we meet with other marathoners from different groups and train together," Chemonges says.

Under the guidance of coach Nalis Bugongo the group which can number as many as sixty athletes and includes Joshua Cheptegei, the 2019 IAAF World Cross Country Champion, Robert Chemonges (no relation) and Jackson Kiprop, winner of the 2019 Nagano Marathon, has a strict training regimen running twice a day.

Highlights are a 35 kilometre run on Thursdays and a Tuesday track session which sees the group running one kilometre ten times at 2:06 marathon pace with a very short recovery.

The camp is not far from the village of Chebungai where Chemonges grew up and where his siblings still live and farm, so he is able to return home on occasion. But like their Kenyan rivals they are incredibly dedicated to the end goal of achieving success on the roads. Everything points in that direction from getting enough rest as well as massage between training sessions, eating healthy and pushing each other.

It cannot be stressed enough what the impact of Kiprotich’s Olympic gold medal offered the young runners. Although he trains mainly in Kenya at the Global Sports Communication camp in Kaptagat he returns home on weekends.

"His medal has inspired me to strive for the same title and many medals for myself in the future," Chemonges says of the Olympic hero. "It’s the biggest inspiration for all of us from Kapchorwa region.

"I meet with him and he encourages me. We often train together when he is at home. He is the most well-known Ugandan and he also competed in Toronto last year."

The 2017 IAAF World Cross Country Championships were held in Uganda’s capital of Kampala which was an incredible source of national pride. Kiprotich returned home to be a member of the Ugandan team even though he is now a fully-fledged marathoner. At that point Chemonges had not yet distinguished himself. But that would change a year later.

Selected to represent Uganda for the first he finished 26th in the 2018 IAAF World Half Marathon Championships in Valencia recording a then personal best of 62:10. That was just four places ahead of Canadian marathon record holder Cam Levins who is also racing for Olympic selection in Toronto.

Later the same year he finished second at the Beirut Marathon, with a promising debut of 2:11:57 on a demanding course.

"We chose Beirut with my manager Jurrie as it was a good place to debut and learn the distance and be competitive," he reveals adding, "I learnt that I can run a faster competition and time when I prepare well and that I can be confident."

As for Toronto his knowledge is limited to what he has gleaned from his management and Kiprotich. "I just know it is a marathon in Canada with a strong course and it can be cold," and then adding rather prophetically, "And no Ugandan has won, so far."

(09/20/2019) ⚡AMP
by Paul Gains
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Scotiabank Toronto Waterfront Marathon

Scotiabank Toronto Waterfront Marathon

The Scotiabank Toronto Waterfront Marathon, Half-Marathon & 5k Run / Walk is organized by Canada Running Series Inc., organizers of the Canada Running Series, "A selection of Canada's best runs!" Canada Running Series annually organizes eight events in Montreal, Toronto and Vancouver that vary in distance from the 5k to the marathon. The Scotiabank Toronto Waterfront Marathon and Half-Marathon are...

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Uganda´s Joshua Cheptegei will be going after the 10K world record at Valencia in December

The 10K Valencia Trinidad Alfonso, which will be held in parallel with the Valencia Marathon on the 1st of December, will be the last edition of this event in Valencia.

That is why an attempt will be made to set a new world record over this distance to mark the occasion.

The Organizers of the 10K – SD Correcaminos (running club) and Valencia City Council – have selected the Ugandan athlete Joshua Cheptegei to make the attempt to beat the world record, currently set by the Kenyan runner Leonard Patrick Komon (26:44) in Utrecht on the 26th of September 2010.

Cheptegei’s next objective is the World Championships in Doha. After that, he will train hard for two months to be in tip-top form to compete in Valencia on the 1st of December.

The Ugandan athlete said: “I want to beat the world record in Valencia, Ciudad del Running. I know it is a very fast circuit and that it has an amazing finish.

That’s why I hope to make history in what will be the last edition of the 10K Valencia Trinidad Alfonso”.

(09/03/2019) ⚡AMP
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10k Valencia Trinidad Alfonso

10k Valencia Trinidad Alfonso

On the same day of the marathon, this parallel event of 10 kilometers is celebrated in the city of Valencia, Spain. A distance within reach of all runners. Ideal for the popular runner and for friends or companions who come to Valencia and do not resist the temptation to run. Participation is limited to 8,500 runners. ...

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South African Caster Semenya ran the fastest 800m ever run on American soil at the Prefontaine Classic at Stanford clocking 1:55.7

Caster Semenya was almost four seconds ahead of Americans Ajee Wilson and Raevyn Rogers, who crossed the line in season’s best times of 1:58.36 and 1:58.65. This was Caster’s 31st straight victory over this distance clocking 1:55.7 and the fastest time ever on US soil.  

Semenya continues to race well despite the controversy surrounding the IAAF’s efforts to prevent her from racing without taking medication to lower her naturally-high testosterone, something she has consistently said she will not do.

The Swiss Federal Tribunal ruled that she must be allowed to race while it is considering her appeal of the IAAF’s testosterone rule, upheld in a May 1 ruling by the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS).

In other results, Sifan Hassan of the Netherlands won the women’s 3,000m in a new European record of 8:18.49, in a race that also featured Konstanze Klosterhalfen (who finished second with a new PB of 8:20.07), Genzebe Dibaba (fourth, with a new PB of 8:21.29) and World Cross Country champion Hellen Obiri(who finished sixth).

Also on Sunday, Canada’s Mo Ahmed set a new personal best of 8:15.76 in the 2-mile event, good enough for fourth place. Justyn Knight finished ninth, in 8:19.75. The race was won by World Cross Country champion Joshua Cheptegei of Uganda in a world-leading time of 8:07.54. Ahmed broke his own Canadian 5,000m record at the Oslo Diamond League last month.

(07/02/2019) ⚡AMP
by Anne Francis
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Prefontaine Classic

Prefontaine Classic

Stanford University's Cobb Track & Angell Field will be the venue for this year's 45th NIKE Prefontaine Classic/IAAF Diamond League meet on Sunday, June 30.With the ongoing construction of Hayward Field in advance of the 2020 U.S. Olympic Trials and the 2021 IAAF World Championships, an alternate site for America's flagship invitational meet was required. After an extensive search in...

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Selemon Barega is going to defend his two-mile title at the Prefontaine Classic at Stanford and Yomif added to mile field

Ethiopia’s Selemon Barega will return to the Prefontaine Classic to defend his two-mile title at the IAAF Diamond League meeting in Stanford on 30 June.

Barega, the 2016 world U20 champion, won the 2018 Diamond League 5000m title in 12:43.02, a time bettered only by the last three world record setters – two of whom ran before he was born.

Already this year, the 19-year-old has finished fifth at the World Cross Country Championships, first over 10,000m at the Ethiopian Championships and has recorded a season’s best of 12:53.04 for 5000m.

Olympic silver medallist Paul Chelimo finished second to Barega in the two-mile race at last year’s Prefontaine Classic. He may have one eye on the North American best of 8:07.07 set by Matt Tegenkamp in 2007.

Asian champion Birhanu Balew was the only athlete to beat Barega on the IAAF Diamond League circuit last year. The Bahraini runner, who finished third in this event at last year’s Pre Classic, will be looking to get the better of Barega once again.

Abadi Hadis, the 2017 world cross-country bronze medallist, recently came close to his 5000m PB with 12:56.48 in Rome. The versatile Ethiopian also equalled his half marathon PB of 58:44 earlier this year.

Olympic bronze medallist Hagos Gebrhiwet will be contesting the distance for the first time. The Ethiopian has finished third over 5000m in Shanghai and Rome so far this year and second over 10,000m in Stockholm.

World cross-country champion Joshua Cheptegei and fellow Ugandan Jacob Kiplimo are also in the field. Kiplimo finished 11th in this race last year, setting a national record of 8:25.17 – a time that should be within range for both men this time round.

Mo Ahmed, who last week lowered the Canadian 5000m record to 12:58.16, was also in last year’s Pre Classic two-mile race, finishing fourth.

Getaneh Molla made headlines earlier this year when he won the Dubai Marathon in 2:03:34, the fastest debut marathon in history. The Ethiopian will be moving down in distance in Stanford.

While younger brothers Filip and Jakob will line up for the mile in Stanford, older brother Henrik Ingebrigtsen will contest the two-mile event and will look to improve upon his 8:22.31 fifth-place finish from last year.

Others in the field include world U20 1500m record-holder Ronald Kwemoi, Olympic 10,000m silver medallist Paul Tanui, 2018 world 10,000m leader Richard Yator, world U20 cross-country champion Milkesa Mengesha, Australia’s Stewart McSweyn and Canada’s Justyn Knight.

In other Stanford-related news, world indoor record-holder Yomif Kejelcha has been added to the Bowerman Mile field.

(06/12/2019) ⚡AMP
by IAAF
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Prefontaine Classic

Prefontaine Classic

Stanford University's Cobb Track & Angell Field will be the venue for this year's 45th NIKE Prefontaine Classic/IAAF Diamond League meet on Sunday, June 30.With the ongoing construction of Hayward Field in advance of the 2020 U.S. Olympic Trials and the 2021 IAAF World Championships, an alternate site for America's flagship invitational meet was required. After an extensive search in...

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Twenty-year-old Joel Ayeko from Uganda is hoping to make an impact at the 2019 FNB Cape Town 12 OneRun

Ayeko is a relative newcomer to the sport, making his first appearance in 2016 at the Pettinengo 9,6km race in Italy, where he finished 14th behind illustrious names such as multiple world champion, Ezekiel Kemboi, and Jacob Kiplimo.

Ayeko did not race in 2017, but was back on the roads in 2018, winning the Mastboscreda Cross Country Race in January, and then the Parelloop 10km in March, where he ran a time of 29:06.

Ayeko is one of those athletes who strongly believes that Cross Country is a very important part of building a middle-distance runner’s career and has already lined up in two races this year, placing 5th at the National Ugandan Cross Country Trials in February, before going on to finish 10th at the World Cross Country Championships in Aarhus, Denmark on 30 March.

That result in Denmark speaks volumes, when one takes a look at the names that finished ahead of Ayeko. The world title was won by Joshua Cheptegei, the 15km world record-holder.

Jacob Kiplimo, the 10 000m World Junior Champion silver medalist of 2018 was second. Two-time winner and two-time world half-marathon champion, Geoffrey Kamworor was third.

The second-fastest ever runner over 10km, Rhonex Kipruto, could only finish 7th. So this was an incredible run by one so young and new to the sport.

“I am excited to come to Cape Town. I have heard lots of good things about the FNB Cape Town 12 ONERUN from my fellow countrymen, and know that this is a fast race with great competition.

So if I can run well here, then I know I am improving all the time,” said Ayeko. “I know about the fast finish in the final kilometre and am preparing for it.”

(05/07/2019) ⚡AMP
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Cape Town 12 Onerun

Cape Town 12 Onerun

This fast flat route takes runners through a working harbour and into a quiet city centre for a scintillating, fast and furious finish; music, enthusiastic support and a later than usual start time for a road race. The FNB Cape Town 12 ONERUN, the most passionate and welcoming road race on the South African running calendar. ...

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Uganda’s Joshua Cheptegei named Sportsman of the year

Joshua Cheptegei surprised the world at the 2019 World Cross Country Championships in Aarhus, Denmark.

Friday night, Joshua Cheptegei was crowned 2018 Nile Special –Uganda Sports Press Association (USPA) Sportsman of the year a befitting honor at Imperial Royale Hotel.

Cheptegei was voted the International Amateur Athletics Federation (IAAF) Moment of the Month for his outstanding performance in Aarhus, where he led a Ugandan 1-2 finish with Compatriot Jacob Kiplimo taking silver.  

“My big motivation was Kololo 2017 when I got a muscle pull before the home crowd but I have moved on. The Kenyans and Ethiopians should know we are coming , the end of a race in athletics is the beginning of a new one”.

(04/07/2019) ⚡AMP
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IAAF/Mikkeller World Cross Country Championships

IAAF/Mikkeller World Cross Country Championships

Aarhus will be hosting the IAAF/Mikkeller World Cross Country Championships 2019 at Moesgaard Museum. And you can participate! It will be a unique and wild event on the grassy, sloping roof of the Moesgaard Museum and in the nature area around the spectacular building. The 2K loop offers not only a trip up an down the roof of Moesgaard Museum,...

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Joshua Cheptegei takes the title by 25 meters at the senior men’s race at the World Cross-Country Championships

Two years ago, at his home championship in Kampala, Cheptegei looked all over the winner when he had dashed to a 60-metre lead at the start of the final lap. But his apparently decisive move came too soon. Half-way around the final lap he was in trouble. Soon after that he literally did not know where he was.

Today in Aarhus was atonement day, as Cheptegei dashed clear of precocious teammate Jacob Kiplimo and defending champion Geoffrey Kamworor to take the world title by 25 meters in 31:40 over the 10,240m course. Again he did not know where he was, because he has never been a senior world champion before. Now, he had arrived at a long-held goal.

It got better and better for Cheptegei. With Kiplimo second, Thomas Ayeko seventh and Joseph Ayeko tenth, Uganda wrapped up the teams race as well. That was another first, the first time Uganda has taken either a senior or junior gold medal. At senior level, the previous best was bronze medals in Mombasa in 2007 and Kampala last time.

Despite his burn-out, it was Cheptegei’s 30th place finish which clinched the team bronze medal. He contributed, even while out on his feet. Some of that grit no doubt helped over the twisting, turning, climbing and swooping Aarhus course.

As with all races on the day, the steep climb and headlong descent of the roof of the Moesgaard Museum played a major role in dictating the manner in which the senior men’s race was run and in determining how it finished. Cheptegei did not always look the strongest on the roof, but he was when it counted most on the final lap.

The steep, uphill start turned normal world cross-country protocol on its head. The charge off the line in the men’s race looked familiar, but the first lap was by some way the slowest 2km split of the race, which then got quicker and quicker by the lap.

Ugandan vests were always prominent in the lead pack, even when it numbered up to 30 in the early stages. Uganda started with four in the top 10 and finished the same way.

Almost from the outset, however, it was Kiplimo who was the aggressor. He pushed the pace up the roof in the second lap and soon after they entered the third lap he had pulled Cheptegei, Kamworor and Eritrea’s Aron Kifle clear.

While Rhonex Kipruto and Selemon Barega had tried to bridge that gap, by the half-way mark of the race it was clear there were only four who could win. Into the fourth lap, that was down to three as Kifle dropped off, but the Eritrean athlete was still well clear of the chasers and held that place all the way to the line, improving one position on his Kampala race.

Kamworor had raced conservatively, always shadowing every move but rarely leading himself. As the leaders entered the fourth lap, however, he appeared to be trying to assert his authority.

(03/30/2019) ⚡AMP
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IAAF/Mikkeller World Cross Country Championships

IAAF/Mikkeller World Cross Country Championships

Aarhus will be hosting the IAAF/Mikkeller World Cross Country Championships 2019 at Moesgaard Museum. And you can participate! It will be a unique and wild event on the grassy, sloping roof of the Moesgaard Museum and in the nature area around the spectacular building. The 2K loop offers not only a trip up an down the roof of Moesgaard Museum,...

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Ugandan Joshua Cheptegei who won gold twice at the Commonweath Games is ready to win more medals for his country

Joshua Cheptegei, who had a good season last year, told Nation Sport that he will take part in the Uganda cross country trials in Tororo, Uganda hoping to clinch a ticket to this World Cross Country champions in Aarhus, Denmark on March 30.

“I hope the team that will be selected will be strong. We will go for medals which and hope to clinch the overall title currently held by Kenyans,” he said.

The Ugandan said that he is eyeing a podium finish in Denmark after he harrowingly capitulated in Kampala in 2017.

“I have not prepared adequately but by the time we get closer to the competition, I will be in good form and I hope to win a medal for my country.”

Cheptegei is still recovering after being involved in a bad road accident in December. “I was hit by a vehicle which was joining the road and it caused some internal injuries which affected my training and performance.”

He is also eyeing the Diamond League races this season after he was kept out of action last season by injuries. He has planned to participate in various races as a build up for World Championships  set for Doha, Qatar in October.

 “Diamond League races are good to gauge one’s fitness and I will take part in various races to improve my personal best in the long distance races like  3,000m and 5,000m.”

The athlete trains in Kapchorua at an altitude of 1,900 metres above sea level in eastern Uganda under NN Running Team which comprises 12 athletes.

In 2018, he started the season well with a double win in 5,000m and 10,000m during the Commonwealth Games in Gold Coast, Australia.

(02/05/2019) ⚡AMP
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Uganda’s teen phenomenon Jacob Kiplimo ran to victory at the Cross Internacional de Italica

Uganda’s teen phenomenon Jacob Kiplimo and Kenya’s world steeplechase record holder Beatrice Chepkoech captured commanding victories at the Cross Internacional de Itálica in Santiponce.

Held on a pleasant and dry afternoon with the temperature about 66F (19C), the men’s 9.9km event didn’t kick off particularly fast as a large pack covered the opening two kilometers in 5:50, led by Bahrain’s Albert Rop while the main favorites ran conservatively in these early stages.

The following 1.95km circuit took a faster 5:38 with eight men still in the heading group which included Rop, the Ugandan trio of Kiplimo, world 10,000m silver medallist Joshua Cheptegei and Mande Bushendich, Kenya’s Vincent Rono, Morocco’s world steeplechase silver medalist Soufiane El Bakkali and the Spanish pair of Toni Abadía and David Palacio who were fresh from respective performances of 7:47:60 an 7:54:33 over 3000m indoors last Friday in Valencia. Morocco’s 2012 Olympic 1500m bronze medalist Abdelaati Iguider dropped out during the second lap.

At halfway Abadía moved to the front and shared the lead for a while with the top Africans but shortly afterwards it was the teen phenomenon Kiplimo who injected a brisker pace which could only be followed by Cheptegei, Rop, Rono and the long-legged El Bakkali.

Kiplimo’s relentless rhythm – a frantic 5:23 for the fourth loop – soon paid off and he only had Cheptegei for company some 18 minutes into the race and they built a huge margin on Rop, Rono and El Bakkali.

Defending champion Cheptegei, who was aiming to match his fellow Ugandan Matthew Kisorio’s achievement of back-to-back titles (2008 and 2009) could only stay with Kiplimo for four minutes as his younger compatriot unleashed a devastating kick with the clock reading 22:10 to open a sizable margin on him already inside the closing lap. To the astonishment of the assembled crowd, Kiplimo effectively ended the race in a matter of seconds as Cheptegi proved to be unable to follow in his footsteps.

A stellar Kiplimo even smiled to the crowd during the last lap, his ease suggesting he still had another gear if necessary, while Rop began to threaten Cheptegei’s runner-up place way back.

The closing lap only took 5:15 for the 18-year-old leader and he romped home unopposed to claim his fourth victory of the current IAAF Cross Country Permit series and avenge his defeat from 12 months ago. Cheptegei managed to keep Rop at bay to take the runner-up spot.

“I decided to run conservatively for the first half of the race, then I changed the pace and felt great until the end,” said an all-smiles Kiplimo. The Ugandan rising star confirmed he will contest the senior race at the IAAF World Cross Country Championships Aarhus 2019 on 30 March, even though he would be young enough to defend his U20 title.

Asked about his chances of breaking the world 10,000m record on the track after his impressive 26:41 road performance in Madrid, he said: “why not? That’s a long-term goal in my career.”

(01/21/2019) ⚡AMP
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Cross internacional de Italica

Cross internacional de Italica

The Cross Internacional de Itálica is an annual cross country running competition that is held every January in Santiponce, near Seville, Spain. Inaugurated in 1982, the race course is set in the ruins of the ancient Roman city of Italica. As one of only two Spanish competitions to hold IAAF permit meeting status, it is one of the more prestigious...

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Ugandans Jacob Kiplimo and Joshua Cheptegei will face off at the Cross Internacional de Itálica on Sunday

The pair are currently two of the world’s leading distance runners.

They clashed last year in this race, the victory going to Joshua Cheptegei on that occasion while Jacob Kiplimo finished runner-up barely one second behind so Sunday’s event will act as a rematch over the 9975m distance.

The 22-year-old Cheptegei looked destined for gold at the IAAF World Cross Country Championships Kampala 2017 before fatigue set in during the closing stages, forcing him to settle for 30th place. However, he bounced back that season by earning10,000m silver at the IAAF World Championships London 2017 in a huge career best of 26:49.94.

His 2018 accolades include a brilliant 5000/10,000m double victory at the Commonwealth Games in April and more recently a world best over 15km with a stunning 41:05 performance at the Seven Hills Run in Nijmegen on 18 November.

As for Kiplimo, still just 18, he remains unbeaten this winter season having won all four of his appearances on Spanish soil: the Atapuerca, Soria and Alcobendas Cross Country permit races plus the New Year’s eve 10km race in Madrid when he clocked an impressive 26:41, albeit on an aided course. The two Ugandan aces should play a key role at World Cross Country Championships in Aarhus on 30 March and Sunday’s race will mark the season’s first round between the pair.

Mande Bushendich might well complete the podium in what would be an Ugandan clean sweep. The 21-year-old proved to be in top form in Madrid’s New Year’s Eve 10km with a 27:24 clocking to his name.

Kenya’s Vincent Rono, a creditable seventh at the Kampala World Championships and recent winner in Venta de Baños on 16 December, will also be in contention alongside Bahrain’s Albert Rop who is fresh from a victory in Amman on 5 January.

Watch out too for Morocco’s Soufiane El Bakkali, the reigning world 3000m steeplechase silver medallist; the 23-year-old boasts an impressive 7:58:15 career best which places him in the top-ten on the all-time lists. He will be joined by his compatriot Abdelaati Iguider, the 2012 world indoor champion and Olympic bronze medallist over 1500m.

(01/19/2019) ⚡AMP
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Cross internacional de Italica

Cross internacional de Italica

The Cross Internacional de Itálica is an annual cross country running competition that is held every January in Santiponce, near Seville, Spain. Inaugurated in 1982, the race course is set in the ruins of the ancient Roman city of Italica. As one of only two Spanish competitions to hold IAAF permit meeting status, it is one of the more prestigious...

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Ugandan Joshua Cheptegei is one of the stars at the San Silvestre Vallecana 10K

 The young Ugandan athlete Joshua Cheptegei will be one of the international attractions of the Nationale-Nederlanden San Silvestre Vallecana that will be run December 31 through the streets of Madrid.

Cheptegei has confirmed his progression with a spectacular double at the Commonwealth Games of the Commonwealth and his spectacular 27:16 10K in Durban South Africa.

But who can forget watching Cheptegei at the 2017 World Cross Country Championships when he staggered to the finish line. The race was held in his country, in Kampala, and the images of him suffering were seen around the world.

Cheptegei will be the leader of the NN Running Team, which will feature other high-level athletes such as fellow countryman and training partner Mande Bushendich, 21, who ran at 28:01 in Durban, the Eritrean Abrar Osman, the Tanzanian marathon runner Augustino Sulle, and Spaniard Marc Roig.

(12/27/2018) ⚡AMP
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Joshua Cheptegei sets a new 15K world record clocking 41:05 in Nijmegen Netherlands

Joshua Cheptegei, 22, set a new world record for 15k.  The Ugandan distance athlete ran the 15K Sunday morning in 41:05 in Nijmegen, Netherlands at the Seven Hills Run. This is the third men’s world record to fall on the roads in 2018. Eliud Kipchoge clocked 2:01:39 for the marathon world record in Berlin, then Abraham Kiptum’s set the half-marathon world record of 58:18, and now Cheptegei’s 15K world record. Cheptegei took 8 seconds off of the previous mark. The Ugandan runner took the lead from the beginning, tiring his pacers out before the 5K mark, but managed to finish strong on his own. This was the runner’s fourth win at the Seven Hills Run. He closed his race in a solo 2:37 kilometre and averaged 2:44 for the entire run. (11/20/2018) ⚡AMP
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Joshua Cheptegei will return to action at the Dam tot Damloop

Now recovered from the knee injury that has kept him out of racing since April, world silver medallist Joshua Cheptegei will return to action on Sunday at the Dam tot Damloop, a 10-mile IAAF Silver Label road race from Amsterdam to Zaandam. The 22-year-old Ugandan pushed Mo Farah all the way in the 10,000m at the IAAF World Championships London 2017, ultimately taking the silver medal just 0.43 behind the multiple world and Olympic champion. Earlier this year, Cheptegei won the 5000m and 10,000m at the Commonwealth Games and looked poised for a promising track season but was then side-lined by a knee injury. Cheptegei, who last year came within four seconds of the world best for 15km at the Zevenheuvelenloop in Nijmegen, will be making his second appearance at the Dam tot Damloop after finishing second in 2016. Belgium’s Bashir Abdi looks set to be Cheptegei’s main opponent on Sunday. The 29-year-old took the 10,000m silver medal at the recent European Championships and has competed at the Dam tot Damloop on four previous occasions. (09/21/2018) ⚡AMP
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Commonwealth champion Joshua Cheptegei will be the runner to beat at the Dam tot Damloop 10 Miler

Joshua Cheptegei from Ugandan won silver last year at the 10,000 meters at the World Championships in London and this year was the fastest in the 5000 and 10,000 meters at the Commonwealth Games in Australia.  He will be going for gold at the up coming Dam tot Damloop ten mile race. Belgian's Bashir Abdi (silver 10,000 meters EK Berlin) and Ethiopian's Ayele Abshero are also candidates for the victory for the race that runs from Amsterdam to Zaandam.  The Dutch toppers Khalid Choukoud and Michel Butter are also running. In total, 46,000 runners will participate at the Dam tot Damloop race. (09/11/2018) ⚡AMP
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Uganda's Cheptegei pulls off double, sets Games Record and Robertson sets New Zealand National Record

The much talked about 10000m at the Commonwealth Games today was one of the best events of the Games so far. Joshua Kiprui Cheptegei (UGA) fresh off his 5000m win not only won the 10000m too but set a Games Record breaking Wilberforce Talel (KEN) record of 27:45 set in 2002. Cheptegeie clocked 27:19 running his last 5000m in 13:25, 25 seconds faster than his 5000m winning time. The 10000m was a fast race as six runners got under the Games Record. Jake Robertson (NZ) finished fifth in a new national record for New Zealand clocking 27:30. He took the lead at the 7K mark coming up from eight and lead for four laps but he could not hold it but he still ran 13:36 for his last 5000m. Canada's Mohammed Ahmed and Cheptegei battled back and forth for the lead the last two kilometers. In the end the Canadian was out sprinted placing second in 27:20. Third was Rodgers Kwemoi (KEN) in 27:28. Eight runners finished under 28 minutes. It does not get much better than this. (04/13/2018) ⚡AMP
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Commonwealth Games 5000m Champion has decided to also run the 10000m

Uganda's Joshua Cheptegei, fresh from winning the 5,000m gold medal at the Commonwealth Games in Australia, has changed his mind and will compete in the 10,000m final as well. He won his first-ever Commonwealth Games gold on Sunday April 8 in a time of 13:50.83, ahead of Canada's Mohammed Ahmed at the Carrara Stadium Track. The other two Ugandans in the race, Thomas Ayeko and Phillip Kipyeko, finished fourth and sixth respectively. Cheptegei had, according to the country's athletics federation, initially ruled himself out of the longer distance as he didn't want to overload himself, but will now contest the 10km final on 13 April. "We have managed to convince Cheptegei," said Dominic Otuchet, chairman of the Uganda Athletics Federation. "This is very good for Uganda as a country and for the athlete himself because he is now better motivated to even perform well after winning gold on Sunday." Otuchet explained that Cheptegei initially did not want to overextend himself with two races, even though he had qualified for both, adding: "But we left him entered for the two events and only kept hoping that he changes his mind. "We are glad he has now allowed to stay back and compete in the 10,000m final." (04/11/2018) ⚡AMP
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