By Prudence Minayo
Eliud Kipchoge is the marathon GOAT. He has broken world records and inspired generations of athletes beyond the borders of Africa. Much has been said and written about him but very few know the woman who has stood behind him for close to two decades of their relationship.
Grace Sugutt is Eliud Kipchoge’s little known and media shy wife who was thrust to the limelight after she rushed to her husband with open arms to hug him following his record breaking 1:59:40:2 in INEOS 1:59 Challenge.
In a previous interview with The Standard, Grace remarked that she wanted to be remembered as the force behind the force. A staunch catholic, she was quoted by the media saying she fasted for seven days before the Berlin Marathon.
“I congratulate my husband for again making history by lowering his world record time. I was in prayer mood for the last one week and I fasted for a miracle to happen. I’m happy that victory has come home,” she told Daily Nation.
Meeting and Having Family
Grace and Eliud were schoolmates and neighbours. Her brother Amos was also a friend of Eliud’s. She fell in love with him at the age of 19. They dated and a year later settled for life in marriage after a traditional wedding ceremony. The couple welcomed their firstborn Lynne shortly after getting married. They followed up with Griffin then Gordon.
The couple brought up their children teaching them humility and the importance of education.
Work, Philanthropy and Hobbies
She oversees the family’s investments, which includes real estate, dairy, poultry and maize farming. When her husband is home, she ensures that he is in a fit state for practice.
On weekends, the mother of three enjoys reading a book or Formula 1 with her husband when he is home. She also loves traveling to various places with her favorite local destination being Laikipia. She has also been to Japan, Taiwan, Hong Kong and China.
Together with her husband, they supported athletes during the pandemic. She has also been at the forefront of helping girls get access to sanitary towels, especially reusable ones that sustains them for years. This is done in partnership with other stakeholders. She hopes this will lay the ground for the formation of the Elite Kipchoge Foundation which in a previous interview with The Standard she said will have three goals:
- Identification and development of talent
- Cultivating a culture of reading and access to education
- Conservation of the environment. To kick start on this, the couple has adopted 130 acres of Kaptagat forest where they are providing support for the water tower’s reforestation.
Grace Sugutt also finds a way of assisting some needy people who knock on her doors.