Three more Kenyan athletes shortlisted for top IAAF award

Tuesday, October 15th, 2019 16:24 |
Hellen Obiri savours the moment after winning gold in the women’s 5,000m at Khalifa Stadium in Doha. Photo/AFP

Kenya’s stardust trio of Helen Obiri, Brigid Kosgei and Beatrice Chepkoech have made it into the prestigious IAAF shortlist for World Athlete of the Year Award slated for Monaco, France in November.

The marvelous trio, who blazed the trail in 2019 with inspiring performances will fight out for the top gong with eight other athletes drawn five other continents.

The competitive short includes Jamaica’s sprint queen Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce, British Heptathlon sensation Katarina Johnson-Thompson and Ethiopian-born Dutch track star Sifan Hassan.

Also in the running are Russia’s high jumper Mariya Lasistkene, German long jumper Malaika Mihambo, Nigeria-born Bahraini Salwa Eid Naser, two-time 400m huddles record Breaker Dalilah Muhammad of USA and high flying Venezuelan Yulimar Rojas of triple jump.

Kosgei headlines the Kenyan cast with her most recent feat of lowering the women marathon record by 81 seconds on her way to winning the Chicago Marathon.

The 25 year-old clocked 2:14:04 to obliterate a sixteen year marathon record. Earlier in April she also the London Marathon and the world’s leading time of 1:05:28 for the half marathon and 1:04:28 on a downhill course.

Obiri on the other hand won two gold medals in the 2019 calendar, first in Aarhus, Denmark where she won the World Cross Country title and in Doha where she set the championship record at 14:26.72 as she won gold in the women 5000m. The Kenya Defense Forces athlete also set the fastest time over 5000m in 2019 at 14:20.36 in the London Diamond League.

All conquering steeplechase record holder Beatrice Chepkoech won seven of her eight races in 2019. She scooped the Diamond Trophy for 2019 and won gold in the Doha World Championships in 8:57.84, a record in the IAAF women steeplechase championships. 

Chepkoech makes a second successive shortlist in the nominees having featured in 2018. Despite winning the IAAF Continental Cup and breaking the world record, she fell short of expectations but hopes to spring a surprise this year.

And just like their male counterparts a three way voting process will determine the finalists. The IAAF Council and IAAF Family will cast their votes by email while fans can vote online via the IAAF’s social media platforms. A like on Facebook and Instagram and a retweet on Twitter will count as one vote.

The IAAF Council vote will count for 50% of the result while the IAAF Family votes and public votes will each count for 25% of final result.

“The nominations of 11 athletes reflects the remarkable range of exceptional performances that the sport has witnessed this year, at the IAAF World Athletics Championships in Doha, and in the Diamond League and in road and cross country events. The IAAF’s Competition Performance Ranking show that the World Championships in Doha was the highest quality competition in the history of the event,” IAAF said yesterday

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