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Faith Kipyegon: Shining spotlight on World Athlete of the Year Award nominee

Wednesday, November 22nd, 2023 16:40 | By
Faith Kipyegon reacts after winning gold at the World Athletics Championship in Budapest. PHOTO/World Athletics
Faith Kipyegon reacts after winning gold at the World Athletics Championship in Budapest. PHOTO/World Athletics

After breaking three records in 2023, Faith Kipyegon became one of the most decorated middle-distance runners and has been shortlisted for the World Athlete of the Year Award.

Kipyegon started her season running at the Sirikwa Cross Country in Eldoret and won the women’s 10km event by more than a minute.

Three months later, she appeared for the first time in the season for her track campaign and managed victory after clocking 3:58.57 in the 1500m at the Doha Wanda Diamond League meeting.

In Florence, at stake was the world 1500m record of 3:50.07, and Kipyegon was magnificient as she ran in 3:49.11 to take almost a full second off the world record, which meant the 29-year-old won the race by a staggering margin of eight seconds.

After shattering the 1500m record, she set eyes on a more challenging venture: the 5000m in Paris, where she met the world's best in that race.

Approaching the final kilometre, of 2:43.2, the Kenyan superstar crossed the finish line in 14:05.20 and took off 1.42 seconds off the previous world record. This is despite the fact that she had completed just two races at that distance before.

She took a little break from the Diamond League series and featured at the World Trials in Nairobi, where she ran in 14:53.90.

Faith Kipyegon in 1500m action in Budapest. PHOTO/World Athletics
Faith Kipyegon in 1500m action in Budapest. PHOTO/World Athletics

After the Nairobi race, she travelled to Monaco, where she shattered another record, crushing the world record by five seconds after racing in 4:07.64.

At the World Athletics Championship in Budapest, Kipyegon doubled, representing Kenya in the 1500m and 5000m, and won gold in both races.

In the 1500m, she clocked 3:54.87 before facing Olympic champion Sifan Hassan and world 10,000m champion Gudaf Tsegay in the final of the 5000m. She emerged the winner, despite the highest calibre of rivals, by posting a 14:53.88 record.

The only setback of the season came when she featured on the roads in October and finished third at the World Athletics Road Running Championships in Riga, Latvia. This is the only defeat of the season for Kipyegon, although she added another global medal to her collection, the mile bronze.

The World Athletes of the Year winner will be announced on December 11, 2023 by World Athletics.

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