Kipchoge to face Hamilton, Messi, Nadal, Co for prestigious Laureus award
Webster Nyandika and Agencies
World marathon record holder Eliud Kipchoge has been nominated for the prestigious Laureus World Sports Awards.
The annual event, established in 1999 and which honours the outstanding achievements of individuals and teams from the world of sports, will take place in Berlin on February 17.
Kipchoge who ran a sub-two-hour marathon in Vienna last year before being crowned male athlete of the year by World Athletics body, will contend for the award against his newly found friend Formula One star Lewis Hamilton, football star Lionel Messi, tennis player Rafael Nadal, golf’s Tiger Woods and Marc Márquez of MotoGP.
The 35-year-old had a sensational 2019, winning the London Marathon for the fourth time in April before icing the cake with the Vienna exploits.
Following his record- breaking heroics, Kipchoge has bagged numerous accolades including back-to-back IAAF Male Athlete of the Year awards and most recently was crowned the BBC Overseas Sports Personality of the Year.
Six-time F1 champion Hamilton has been nominated six times in the past, but has never won it. The Briton finds himself in good company, with a rostrum that resembles a veritable ‘Who’s Who’ of the International sports arena.
Only two F1 drivers have ever won the Laureus award in the individual category since the event’s inception: Michael Schumacher in 2002 and 2004, and Sebastian Vettel in 2014.
American Tiger Woods, who won The Masters after over a decade with no major championships, is also a strong contender in the list.
Mercedes which has been nominated in the ‘Team of the Year’ category, took top spoils in the same category in 2018, a feat also achieved by Renault in 2006 and Brawn GP in 2010.
The Silver Arrows squad will be battling Liverpool FC (Football), the South Africa Rugby Union Team, Spain’s Men’s Basketball Team, the United States’ Women’s Football Team and Canadian basketball team, the Toronto Raptors.
The world of motorsport will also be represented by German driver Sophia Flörsch, nominated in the ‘Comeback of the Year’ category for her recovery after her horrendous Macau GP crash in 2018.