Legendary marathoner Eliud Kipchoge has chided his compatriot Kelvin Kiptum's record-breaking feat at the Chicago marathon, stating that he paved the way for the newer generation of athletes.
Speaking during a press conference in Oviedo, Spain, on Friday, Kipchoge insisted that he was not surprised by Kiptum breaking his world record.
He also looked forward to other athletes achieving the same feat, which was made possible because of his own stellar career.
"I was not surprised about [Kiptum] breaking the world record,” Kipchoge told the journalists.
“I was happy to see the record being broken. I am looking forward to seeing records being broken because I have shown them the way.”
While addressing his future, Kipchoge emphasized his focus was on winning the Olympic medal for the third time consecutively.
“I will be the happiest on earth to win an Olympic medal for the third time, back-to-back-to-back. It’s about making history; it’s about inspiring a generation."
Arguably one of the greatest marathoners of all time, Kipchoge boasts 16 wins out of 18 marathons that he has competed in, winning in prestigious marathons such as London and Berlin four times each. Further, he has over 10 major titles to his name.
Kipchoge held the World marathon record of 2:01:09 at Berlin on September 2022 until it was broken by Kiptum, who clocked in at 2:00:35 during the Chicago marathon held on October 8, 2023.
A section of Kenyans, thereafter, voiced their concerns after Kipchoge failed to congratulate him for breaking the record.
In Oviedo, Spain, Kipchoge was awarded the 2023 Princess of Asturias Award for Sports. The award recognised his achievements in his career as well as his foundation to promote education and environmental protection.
“It is an absolute honour to receive the Princess of Asturias Award. To be amongst a list of extraordinary laureates, all people from different walks of life. It motivates me in my goal to leave a legacy in this world through running since a running world is a more peaceful world, a happier world and a more healthy world," Kipchoge stated while receiving the award.
"I would like to thank Her Royal Highness the Princess of Asturias and her parents, Their Majesties the King and Queen of Spain, for granting me this honour."