- World marathon champion Eliud Kipchoge has spoken following Kelvin Kiptum accident
- Kenyans on X and other social media platforms were weaving narratives around Kipchoge’s silence
- However, Kipchoge on Monday 11 am Kenyan time expressed his sadness over Kiptum’s demise
World marathon champion Eliud Kipchoge has spoken following Kelvin Kiptum accident on Sunday that claimed his life.
Kenyans on X and other social media platforms were weaving narratives around Kipchoge’s silence following Kiptum’s demise.
However, Kipchoge on Monday at 11 am Kenyan time expressed his sadness in losing an athlete who was the next big thing for Kenyan athletics.
“I am deeply saddened by the tragic passing of the Marathon World record holder and rising star Kelvin Kiptum. An athlete who had a whole life ahead of him to achieve incredible greatness. I offer my deepest condolences to his young family. May God comfort you during this trying time,” he posted on X.
His tweet ended a flurry of speculation, some hypothesizing that Kiptum’s death had something to do with the Paris Olympics 2024.
Kelvin Kiptum Accident
Rwandese coach Garvis Hakizimana broke the news of Kelvin Kiptum accident on Sunday. Police reports state that the deceased Kenyan athlete had a head-on collision at approximately 11 p.m. in Kaptagat along Elgeyo Marakwet-Ravine highway.
He died on the spot.
When Did Kelvin Kiptum Set The World Record?
Kiptum hit the international headlines following his victory in Illinois, during the 2023 Chicago Marathon. He broke the world record posting 2:00.35. His fastest marathon debut in Valencia in 2022 introduced him to the global athletics stage.
He followed it up with a track record in April 2023 with a time of 2:01:25 at the London Marathon. But it was in Chicago where the 24-year-old cemented his place as the next marathoner to focus on.
Kiptum was getting ready to start his new season at the Rotterdam Marathon on April 14 of this year before joining the Kenyan team for the 2024 Olympic Games in Paris.
The international track federation Global Athletics had just last week confirmed Kiptum’s global marathon record.
Eliud Kipchoge Vs Kelvin Kipchoge Debate
Following Kelvin Kiptum accident, a section of Kenyans on social media went wild with hypotheses on the nature of his accident. Some alluded to sponsored black magic by his opponents.
Kipchoge was familiar with Kiptum and had even foreseen his potential to surpass the world record. The attempt to sow discord between him and Kiptum’s associates is regrettable. This assertion was based solely on rumours that Kipchoge did not publicly congratulate Kiptum upon breaking his world record last year in Chicago by 34 seconds.
Kipchoge congratulated the deceased during a media interview, a departure from congratulatory messages posted on social media. Prior to this, world marathon champion had expressed his belief that Kiptum was likely to break his record, praising his talent and character.
Following Kiptum’s achievement in London and Chicago Marathons respectively, he once again praised the young athlete in a press conference. His statements indicated that he knew the late well and admired his zeal at 24 years.
Therefore, assertions by several quarters that there was ‘bad blood’ between the two marathon legends is unfounded. Besides, Kipchoge hasn’t been able to participate in all the six major marathons in the world in a year which he would have loved for Kiptum to.
Political strategist Pauline Njoroge pointed all this out on Monday in a bid to extinguish the rumours flying around.
“Its a very painful and emotional moment losing Kiptum. It’s like a story that had just begun, then death tore the pages all away. As we mourn this hero, let us not create enmity where we have no evidence that it exists. Let us not be careless with people’s reputations, for likes on social media.
Kelvin Kiptum Wife
Following the tragic Kelvin Kiptum accident and subsequent loss of life, he has been survived by a wife, Asenath Rotich and their two children. Asenath described Kiptum as a loving family man who always put the needs of his wife and children first.