Kelvin Kiptum, a 24-year-old marathon world record holder and rising star in the long-distance running community, and his coach Gervais Hakizimana were tragically killed in a car crash late Sunday in Kenya. The accident happened on a road between Eldoret and Kaptagat in western Kenya, in the heart of the high-altitude region that’s renowned as a training base for long distance runners.
Kiptum had immediate success by running the fastest time ever by a marathon debutant at the 2022 Valencia Marathon. He won the London and Chicago races last year, two of the most prestigious marathons in the world. In October, Kiptum set a new world record of 2:00.35 at the Chicago Marathon, beating the mark of fellow Kenyan Eliud Kipchoge. His record was ratified by international track federation World Athletics last week.
Family members of Kiptum were also with them to identify his body. Kenyan media reported that a third person, a woman, was in the car and was taken to the same hospital with serious injuries. Milcah Chemos, who went to the hospital where Kiptum’s body was taken, saw him lying motionless on a stretcher as he spoke to reporters about her experience at the scene. “It is very sad,” she said, tears streaming down her face. “We lost two young men who were full of potential.”
Kenyan athletics federation president Jackson Tuwei sent a team of officials to the area after being informed of the late-night accident. World Athletics president Sebastian Coe was one of the first to offer his condolences in a statement on Twitter. “We are shocked and deeply saddened to learn of