Kipruto soldiers on
Olympic champion vows to return for world 3,000m SC record next year
Olympic 3000m champion Conseslus Kipruto will be back next year with his ambition of breaking the 12-year-old steeplechase world record.
Kipruto, who clocked of Olympic record of 8:03.28 in Rio and was chasing the 7:53.63 Saif Saaeed Shaheen world record at the last IAAF Diamond League in Brussels, said he is preparing for next year. The Olympic hero said this during his homecoming ceremony at his Lutiet Village in Nandi County.
“I was very impressed by the Olympic gold because it was my first time to run in Olympics and returned not only with the title but also the record,” he said. “I had intentions of breaking the world record in my speciality but things didn’t work out as earlier planned. However, I promise to accomplish my mission next year God willing,” Kipruto said. He set the 8:00.12 world leading time at the Birmingham meet and expectations were high that he would erase the long-standing record.
“Everything has its time. May be it was not my turn to break it. However, I am taking a break before I start preparing for the World Championships next year in London,” he said.
Meanwhile, the village busted into song and dance as the new kid on the block arrived home with Olympic gold and the Diamond League trophy.
At hand to meet the Rio hero were four-time world 3,000m steeplechase champion Ezekiel Kemboi, former Olympic champion Brimin Kipruto, steeplechase greats Jairus Birech and Paul Kipsiele.
Others were Olympic Marathon champions Eliud Kipchoge (men) and Jemimah Sumgong (women), world champions Nicholas Bett and Asbel Kiprop among others.
Nandi County governor Cleophas Lagat promise to fete athletes from the region who won excelled at the Olympics.
Elsewhere, former world 100 metres champion Tyson Gay has traded the track for ice this week after he entered to compete in the U.S. Bobsled National Push Championships in Calgary.
The 34-year-old will make his initial bid for a national team spot despite only pushing a sled for a “handful of days”, according to the U.S. Bobsled and Skeleton Federation.
Gay was suspended from athletics for a year after testing positive for a banned substance in 2013, and was stripped of his 4x100 metres relay silver medal from the London Games.
The 2007 triple world champion was part of the 4x100 relay team that was disqualified in the final at this year’s Rio Games.
Olympic 3000m king Conseslus Kipruto (2nd left) and 3,000m steeplechase teammates cut the cake during his homecoming ceremony in Nandi.