Kipyegon plans switch to marathon races in future

Tuesday, January 31st, 2023 07:30 | By
Kipyegon plans switch to marathon races in future
Kenya's Faith Kipyegon wins the women's 1500m heats during the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games at the Olympic Stadium in Tokyo on August 2, 2021. (Photo by Giuseppe CACACE / AFP)

Double Olympic champion Faith Kipyegon has announced that she wants to follow in the footsteps of legendary athlete Eliud  Kipchoge by eventually venturing into marathon races.

Chepngetich said that the unparalleled success of Kenya’s marathon icon, Kipchoge, has ignited and nurtured her ambition. “As my career evolves, I will continue to look up to Eliud because he is the greatest marathon runner of all time,” Kipyegon said. “That is something I hope to accomplish in the future.” I aspire to grow as a person and an athlete like him, as well as to become the greatest marathon runner of all time,” she added.

She is only the second woman in history to win back-to-back Olympic gold medals in the women’s 1,500m, having triumphed in Rio 2016 and Tokyo 2020. The only other athlete to accomplish the feat is Tatyana Kazankina of the Soviet Union at the 1976 and 1980 Olympics.

Since 2015, she has either won or finished second in every major championship and is widely regarded as the greatest female middle-distance runner in history.

At the 2022 World Championships, Kipyegon put on a dominant display, winning the world title in a blazing time of 3:52.96. She stressed that she isn’t done with the 1,500m quite yet: “My goal is to break the world record, and I hope to do so in style,” she noted. Last year, she narrowly missed the world record of 3:50.07 held by Genzebe Dibaba of Ethiopia when she ran 3:50.37 at the Monaco Diamond League. Dibaba returned to distance running in 2022, placing second in her marathon debut at the Amsterdam Marathon at 2:18:05.

Kipyegon has yet to race on the road in her career as a senior, which dates back to 2011. In 2018, she gave birth to her daughter, Alyn, and took 18 months off the sport before returning to win the 2019 Prefontaine Classic in her signature event. Months later, she placed second at the 2019 World Championships in Doha, breaking the Kenyan record of 3:54.22.

Although she didn’t reveal when she will be making her marathon debut, we can speculate that it will likely be after the Paris 2024 Olympics, where she will be vying to become the first middle-distance athlete to win three straight Olympic golds.

Last week the duo were crowned champions of 2022 sports personalities in women and men respectively, during the 19th gala of the sports personality of the year awards gala held at KICC.

Kipyegon retained the trophy she had scooped in 2021 when the gala was held in Kakamega County.

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