• May 19, 2024
  • Last Update May 19, 2024 3:26 PM
  • Nairobi

7 Kenyan athletes currently holding world records

7 Kenyan athletes currently holding world records

By Patricia Mollyne Mataga

Kenya has over the years proven that it is a powerhouse not only in Africa but globally when it comes to athletics.

The country has excelled in medium and long-distance races, with athletes in short races like Ferdinand Omanyala also cropping up.

Kenyans have tens of world championships and Olympic titles as well as Diamond leagues.

Many have also broken and set world records in various fields, several of which they still hold today.

Here are some of the Kenyans still holding the world records in athletics.

David Rudisha – 800m

David Lekuta Rudisha is a two-time back-to-back Olympic champion from the 2012 London and 2016 Rio Olympics and a two-time World champion from the 2011 and 2015 World Championships in Athletics.

Rudisha is a world record holder at the event with a time of 1:40.91, which he set at the 2012 London Games on 9 August 2012.

To date, the Kenyan remains the first and only person to ever run 800 metres under 1:41, and he holds the three fastest, six of the eight fastest and half of the twenty fastest times ever run in an 800m race.

Faith Kipyegon – 1,500m and mile

Kipyegon is the current world record holder for the 1,500 metres and mile, both set in 2023.

She also set a world record in the 5,000 metres but did not last long.

Agnes Tirop – 10 km

The late Agnes Jebet Tirop is the world record holder in the 10 kilometres women’s-only race which she set in 2021

Tirop ran a time of 30:01 at the Road to Records event hosted in Herzogenaurach, Germany smashed the world record in a women-only 10-kilometre race, set in 2002, by 28 seconds.

she died in 2021 after being allegedly stabbed by her husband who is facing murder charges at an Eldoret High Court.

Beatrice Chepkoech – 3000m steeplechase

She is the current 3000m steeplechase world record holder.

Beatrice Chepkoech Sitonik produced one of the most spectacular performances in Diamond League history when she ran 8:44.32 minutes to break the 3000m steeplechase world record at the 2018 edition of Herculis Meet in Monaco, France.

She became the first woman to break the 8:45 and 8:50 mark in the event.

Kelvin Kiptum – marathon

The late Kelvin Kiptum is the current world marathon record holder.

He set a men’s world record time of 2:00:35 on October 8, 2023, at the 2023 Chicago Marathon.

Kelvin Kiptum died in a road accident along the Eldoret-Kaptagat road in Uasin Gishu County, weeks after the record was ratified by the World Athletics.

Peres Jepchirchir – women-only marathon

Olympic champion Peres Jepchirchir smashed the women-only world record by 45 seconds at the TCS London Marathon, winning the World Athletics Platinum Label road race in 2:16:16 in April 2024.

The record was being held by compatriot Mary Keitany which was at 2:17:01.

Emmanuel Wanyonyi – road mile

The 19-year-old Emmanuel Wanyonyi broke the road mile world record in Herzogenaurach, Germany, in April 2024

He set the new record following an incredible run of three minutes 54.56 seconds on what was his competitive debut over the distance.

The previous world road mile record was set by American athlete Hobbs Kessler. Kessler’s world record time was 3:56.13.

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