Kenyan Olympic champion and Men’s 3000 steeplechase winner Conseslus Kipruto brought home gold after he won the men’s race at the Diamond League in Zurich while missing a shoe.
The 24-year-old, whose left shoe came off during the race, went on to defeat silver medalist Soufiane El Bakkali of Morocco on Thursday night to take home the $50,000 (Ksh 5 million) prize money despite being in pain.
“I have big pain. I am injured because I lost my left shoe. That was a mess,” Kipruto told the organizers after the race.
This win comes fresh in the heels of another gold won in the 3000 metres steeplechase at the African Athletics Championships in Asaba Nigeria on August 3, 2018.
The middle distance runner launched his career in 2010 going on to win the World Youth and the World Junior titles in the years 2011 and 2012 respectively.
The athlete credits his uncle physiotherapist Cleophus Saina and his high school headteacher for kick-starting his athletics career as he was mostly keen on football while in school.
“Back then, I didn’t train as I was much more interested in football even though my neighbours used to tell me I have a talent in running, including my uncle Cleophus Saina,” he previously stated.
“My focus was on developing as a striker, although I recall my headteacher also supported my uncle’s viewpoint so much so when he used to see me play football he used to stop the game and say ‘no more football Conseslus, I want you to run,” the world champion narrated.
In April, Kipruto led his other countrymen in a clean sweep taking the three medals in the men’s 3000 steeplechase race at the Commonwealth Games held at Gold Coast Australia.
Conseslus is the reigning Olympic and World champion in the steeplechase with a personal best of 8:00:12 minutes set at the Birmingham Diamond League event in 2016.
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