On Sunday, Kenya lost one of its greatest marathon runners, Kelvin Kiptum. The 24-year-old had set the world record in Chicago and won the London Marathon in April. According to a police report, Kiptum lost control of his vehicle while driving in Kaptagat, south-west Kenya, at 11pm local time. His coach Gervais Hakizimana also died in the crash, with a third person being taken to the hospital.
The prime minister of Kenya, Raila Odinga, along with the minister for sports Ababu Namwamba expressed their heartbreak over the loss of Kiptum. World Athletics president Sebastian Coe was deeply saddened by the news and described Kiptum as an incredible athlete who is leaving behind an incredible legacy.
According to local county commander Peter Mulinge, the accident was caused by Kiptum losing control of his vehicle and striking a tree before landing in a ditch. Unfortunately, both Kiptum and Hakizimana were killed instantly while the third passenger was taken to a hospital in Eldoret.
Kelvin Kiptum had recently had his world record ratified by World Athletics and announced plans to become the first athlete to run an official marathon under two hours in Rotterdam next April. His untimely death shocked the sports world as he left behind an indelible mark on athletics history.