-Faith Kipyegon’s exploits at the Tokyo Olympics was inspired by her daughter whom she terms as ‘a gold medal she delivered while on her maternity break.’
– The mother of 1 wanted to quit athletics after she was done with secondary education.
Faith Kipyegon is a middle distance runner specializing in the 1500 metre race where she has announced herself at the global stage by winning back to back gold medals including in the Tokyo 2020 Olympics Games.
Days to the Florence Diamond League in 2023, Kipyegon made a daring statement that she was going for the world record. And on 2nd June, 2023, she did exactly that by clocking 3 minutes 49.11 seconds thereby decorating her impressive career with a world record that had been elusive.
Kipyegon was born on 10th January, 1994. The 29 year old athlete has resided in Keringet for a better part of her life before she relocated to Eldoret in 2019.
The mother of one studied at Keringet Winners Girls High School located in Kuresoi, Nakuru county. The school was founded through a Dutch philanthropist known as Piet de Peut. The mission of the institution was to give a conducive space for education while at the same time tapping talent. Kipyegon sat her Kenya Certificate of Secondary Education (KCSE) in 2015.
Kipyegon is a seventh born in a family of 8. She has 3 brothers and 4 sisters. Her father’s name is Samuel Koech Kipyegon and he was first brought to limelight when Kenya Power decided to connect electricity to his home, just a week after the daughter won in Rio Olympics in 2016.
Faith is married to Timothy Kitum and the couple is blessed with one daughter, Alyn who was born in 2018. The 3 year old means the world to Faith and their bond is a true definition of how she’s special to her. When she was pregnant in 2018, Faith missed the Commonwealth championship but she didn’t mind because she was going to deliver gold in the labour ward.
According to Faith, she always wanted to give birth at a young age, and that Alyn is a gem from God. This is the reason why she emotionally dedicated her Tokyo Olympics gold to her daughter.
“First gold medal as a mom, I dedicate this medal to my daughter. When I see her, I get encouraged to work hard, this medal belongs to her,” Kipyegon said.
Initially, Faith was interested in playing football before one of her teachers encouraged her to fit the spikes shoes. Her career was greatly moulded at Winners Girls by the school’s principal, Marylyn Lasoi. According to a report by nation, Kipyegon had contemplated quitting athletics immediately after completing secondary education. When Lasoi got wind of Faith’s decision, she strongly felt it weighing down on her. The principal reached out to athletics stakeholders and a local politician who persuaded Kipyegon to remain on the tracks.
Faith’s career has remained decorated ever since. She emerged second in Beijing World Championship clocking 4.08.96. The 2016 Rio de Janeiro Olympics propelled her to global fame when she won gold in a time of 4 minutes 8.92 seconds. In 2017 and 2019 world championships she won gold and silver respectively. On 6th August, 2021, she set an Olympic record when she clocked 3 minutes 53.11 seconds.
Asked on comment on various Kenyan athletes changing their nationality, Kipyegon said it is because of the stiff competition here. She however said she is proud to be a Kenyan and that she is confident of securing a chance to fly the national flag.
“I am proud of my country, I know I am strong and can qualify to the world championships or Olympics (and) I don’t have to switch,” she told a congregation in Paris.