A Ugandan is top of the world athletics charts again. But not Joshua Cheptegei this time.
Jacob Kiplimo proved a point when he won the Men’s Half Marathon at the World Half Marathon Championships in Gdynia, Poland on Saturday. He recorded a time of 58:49 to come top and win the $30,000 (about Shs 111m) prize money, while world star Cheptegei finished in 4th place.
The 19-year-old defeated Kenya’s Kibiwott Kandie, Amdework Walelegn of Ethiopia and Cheptegei. All the four athletes finished the race in under 60 minutes.
Kenya, Uganda and Ethiopia led throughout the race which had 40 athletes in the lead pack in the 5km segment. However, Cheptegei, the current 10,000m and 5,000m record holder led the race in the 10km segment with Kiplimo, Kibiwott, Walelegn remained in the lead pack.
Kiplimo and Kibiwott, took the lead in the other half of the race after overtaking Cheptegei. Kibiwott, the 2020 Prague Half Marathon champion struggled to outpace Kiplimo and succeeded in the 53rd minute before Kiplimo accelerated to finish the last 50 metres in the lead.
Meanwhile, the other Uganda athletes Victor Kiplangat, Stephen Kissa finished in top 20, while Abel Chebet and Moses Kibet finished in the top 80.
Earlier, Kenya’s Peres Jepchirchir won the Women’s Half Marathon race. She crossed the finish line on 1:0:06, followed by Germany’s Melat Yisak Kejeta (1:05:18), while Ethiopia's Yalemzerf Yehualaw took bronze with a time 1:05:19.
Ugandan athletes Juliet Chekwel and Doreen Chemutai finished 14th and 17th respectively. Other teammates, Doreen Chesang and Rachael Zena Chebet finished in position 30th and 57th respectively.
In the men's team event, Kenya won gold, Ethiopia took the silver medal, while Uganda settled for bronze. For the women's team event, Ethiopia won gold, while Uganda settled for 4th place.
History for Uganda! 🇺🇬
Jacob Kiplimo wins his nation's first #WorldHalfMarathon title in a championship record.
How the talented teen secured gold 👇 pic.twitter.com/uKzIzrA1YQ— World Athletics (@WorldAthletics) October 17, 2020