London Marathon pays tribute to last year’s winner Kelvin Kiptum, who died in car crash

LONDON (AP) — The London Marathon paid tribute to last year’s winner Kelvin Kiptum with a period of applause before the start of the men’s race on Sunday.

Kiptum was killed along with his coach in a car crash in his native Kenya in February. At the age of 24, he was already the marathon world record holder and viewed as a top contender for gold at the Olympics in Paris this year.

Kiptum set a London Marathon course record of 2 hours, 1 minute, 25 seconds in 2023 — finishing nearly three minutes ahead of his closest rival.

A video of his win was played before the start of the men’s race on Sunday, before a period of applause by the runners and the crowd at both the start area in Greenwich and the finish in front of Buckingham Palace in central London.

Kenenisa Bekele, the Ethiopian former Olympic 10,000 and 5,000-meter champion who is still competing in the elite marathon field at the age of 41, said this week that Kiptum had already created “an amazing history” in the sport.

“Kelvin of course, all of us miss him,” said Bekele, who was the runner-up in the London Marathon in 2017. “We put him in a special place in our heart because … within a short time he has done a lot for our sport.”

Kiptum was driving when his vehicle veered off a road and into a ditch before hitting a tree, police said. He had broken the world record at last year’s Chicago Marathon.


AP sports:

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