Eliud Kipchoge headlines Kenya Olympic marathon team, eyes history in Paris

Eliud Kipchoge will bid to become the first person to win three Olympic marathon titles after he was named to Kenya’s team for the Paris Games.

Kipchoge, 39, will become the oldest Kenyan track and field athlete to compete at an Olympics and the first Kenyan in any sport to compete in five different Olympics, according to the OlyMADMen.

“I always say the Olympic dream is a special dream,” was posted on Kipchoge’s social media after the team was announced Wednesday. The Olympic Games is what we all dream of as little kids starting out with our sport and is what motivates us the most today. I am beyond proud to be selected for the Kenyan team for the 5th time in my life. After winning the marathon gold medal in Rio de Janeiro and Tokyo, my focus will now be on Paris!”

Kipchoge won 10 consecutive marathons from 2014 to 2019, broke the world record twice (in 2018 and 2022) and is the only person to run the 26.2-mile distance in under two hours, doing so in 2019 under conditions that made it not record-eligible.

Among record-eligible races, he is the second-fastest marathoner in history behind countryman Kelvin Kiptum, who ran 2:00:35 at last October’s Chicago Marathon, breaking Kipchoge’s record of 2:01:09. Kiptum died in a car crash on Feb. 11 at age 24.

Kipchoge finished 10th at his most recent marathon in Tokyo on March 3.

Kipchoge is joined on the Kenyan team for Paris by Benson Kipruto, who won the Tokyo Marathon in March and has finished in the top three of his last seven marathons overall, including wins in Boston (2021) and Chicago (2022).

Alexander Mutiso, who won the London Marathon on April 21, rounds out the three-man team.

Kenya is so deep that Evans Chebet, who won Boston, New York City and Boston in three consecutive marathon starts in 2022 and 2023, did not make the team.

Peres Jepchirchir headlines the women’s team and will look to become the first woman to win multiple Olympic marathon titles.

In an eight-month span in 2021 and 2022, Jepchirchir became the only person to win the Olympic, Boston and New York City marathons in a career. In her most recent marathon, she won in London on April 21.

Hellen Obiri, the reigning Boston and New York City Marathon champion, will make her Olympic marathon debut in Paris. Obiri earned 5000m silver on the track at the last two Games.

Brigid Kosgei, who held the world record for four years before Ethiopian Tigst Assefa shattered it last September, rounds out the three-woman team. Kosgei also took silver at the Tokyo Olympics.

Sharon Lokedi, who won the 2022 New York City Marathon and placed second in Boston on April 15, is the alternate.

Dakotah Lindwurm Fiona O’Keeffe Emily SissonDakotah Lindwurm Fiona O’Keeffe Emily Sisson

Dakotah Lindwurm Fiona O’Keeffe Emily Sisson

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