Seun Ogunkoya

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Seun Ogunkoya
Personal information
Nationality Nigeria
Born (1977-12-28) December 28, 1977 (age 37)
Akure, Ondo State
Height 1.80 m (5 ft 11 in)
Weight 86 kg (190 lb)
Sport Running
Event(s) Sprints
Achievements and titles
Personal best(s)

100m: 9.92 s (Johannesburg 1998)

200m: 20.50 s (Nice 1997)

Seun Ogunkoya (born December 28, 1977) is a Nigerian sprinter and two-time African Championships gold medalist over 100 metres.

Career peak[edit]

He was born in Akure and is a cousin of Falilat Ogunkoya. He improved his personal bests from 10.43 seconds in 1995 to 10.15 seconds in April 1996 in Makurdi, at the 10th National Sports Festival, to 9.97 seconds in July 1997 in Formia.[1][2] He thereby became the youngest sprinter to have broken the 10-second barrier at 19 years, 197 days, a record broken by Yohan Blake (19 years,196 days).[3] Ogunkoya stated that "it is natural to be aiming at the world record".[2] His coach was Tony Osheku.[4]

He competed at the 1996 Summer Olympics, where he was eliminated in quarter final in the 200 metres, before winning a silver medal in the 100 metres at the 1996 World Junior Championships the next month. In 1997 he reached the quarter-final at the 1997 World Championships.[1] In the relay at the 1997 World Championships, four others participated on the Nigerian team, and ended up taking the silver medal.[5]

Ogunkoya won the 100 metres race at the 1996 African Championships and became Nigerian champion in 1996 and 1997.[6][7] In 1998 he won the Weltklasse Zürich meet with 9.96 seconds, a new personal best, before winning the 1998 African Championships in another personal best, and championship record, of 9.94 seconds.[2] In September he finished fourth at the IAAF Grand Prix Final before winning the silver medal at the 1998 World Cup. Here he improved his personal best time to 9.92 seconds, which was also his lifetime best,[1] as well as a Nigerian record.[4] He also won a bronze medal in the 4 x 100 metres relay, with the African team.[8]

He also set personal bests of 20.50 seconds in the 200 metres, achieved in July 1997 in Nice, and 6.52 seconds in the 60 metres, achieved in February 1998 in Budapest.[1]

Later career and life[edit]

Ogunkoya ran in 10.27 seconds as a season's best in 1999. In July 2000 he ran in 10.23 seconds in Lagos.[1] In the same year he was named for the Olympic squad, but fell through with an eighth and last place in his 100 metres heat.[9] He moved to Prague where he recorded a 10.72 second race in June 2003.[1]

Commenting on how Ogunkoya's career had plummeted, an elder in Ondo State stated that "he was not doing anything to pick up his track career. He was just walking the streets of Akure, not knowing what to do".[2] Fellow sprinter Enefiok Udo-Obong commented that Ogunkoya struggled with the loss of his mother, who was also his manager.[10]

Ogunkoya reportedly attempted a comeback in 2004, with a new training base in Kenya.[2] It did not materialize to anything, but he tried to return again in 2007. He trained with Tobias Igwe in Umuahia.[11] He competed in the 2007 Track and Field Championship in Nigeria, but failed to progress from round one.[12]


  1. ^ a b c d e f Seun Ogunkoya profile at IAAF
  2. ^ a b c d e Ikhazuagbe, Duro (24 June 2004). "Seun Ogunkoya: How Real is Comeback Bid?". This Day. Retrieved 12 December 2010. 
  3. ^ All-time men's best 100m . All-time athletics. Retrieved on 2009-08-13.
  4. ^ a b "Osheku: I'm A Fulfilled Coach". Complete Sports. 5 August 2010. Retrieved 12 December 2010. 
  5. ^ "Men 4x100m Relay World Championship 1997 Athens (GRE)". Todor Krastev. Retrieved 12 December 2010. 
  6. ^ "African Championships". GBR Athletics. Athletics Weekly. Retrieved 12 December 2010. 
  7. ^ "Nigerian Championships". GBR Athletics. Athletics Weekly. Retrieved 12 December 2010. 
  8. ^ "Official Results - 4 X 100 METRES Men - Final". IAAF. 12 September 1998. Retrieved 12 December 2010. 
  9. ^ "Seun Ogunkoya". Retrieved 12 December 2010. 
  10. ^ Alaka, Jide; Olus, Yemi (6 April 2009). "Udo-Obong decries lackadaisical attitude to Ojokolo's plight". Next. Retrieved 12 December 2010. 
  11. ^ Ikhazuagbe, Duro (23 March 2007). "Seun Ogunkoya Shops for Redemption in Abia". Daily Champion. Retrieved 12 December 2010. 
  12. ^ Ikhazuagbe, Duro (18 May 2007). "Ogunkoya Flops in Comeback Bid". This Day. Retrieved 12 December 2010.