Kipchoge Keino

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to navigation Jump to search

Kip Keino
Keino in 2014
Personal information
Full nameKipchoge Hezekieh Keino[1]
Born (1940-01-17) 17 January 1940 (age 79)[2]
Kipsamo, Nandi, Rift Valley, Kenya[1]
Height173 cm (5 ft 8 in)[1]
Weight66 kg (146 lb)[1]
Spouse(s)Phyllis Keino
Updated on 10 June 2015.

Kipchoge Hezekiah Keino (born 17 January 1940) is a retired Kenyan track and field athlete. He was the chairman of the Kenyan Olympic Committee (KOC) until 29th September 2017. A two-time Olympic gold medalist, Keino was among the first in a long line of successful middle and long distance runners to come from the country and has helped and inspired many of his fellow countrymen and women to become the athletics force that they are today. In 2012, he was one of 24 athletes inducted as inaugural members of the International Association of Athletics Federations Hall Of Fame.[3]

Early life[edit]

Keino was born in Kipsamo, Nandi District, Kenya. His name, Kipchoge, is a Nandi language expression for "born near the grain storage shed".[4] His parents died when he was a youngster and he was raised by an aunt. After finishing school, he joined the Kenya Police.[5] Before taking up athletics, he played rugby.[6]

Athletic career[edit]

He began his international career at the 1962 Commonwealth Games in Perth, Australia where he came eleventh in the three miles. At the 1964 Summer Olympics he finished fifth in 5000 m and just missed qualification for the 1500 m final.

On 27 August 1965, Keino lowered the 3000 m world record by over 6 seconds to 7:39.6 in his first attempt at the distance. He won two gold medals (1500 and 5000 metres) at the inaugural All-Africa Games. Later in that year, he broke the 5000 m world record held by Ron Clarke, clocking 13:24.2. At the 1966 Commonwealth Games in Kingston, Jamaica, he won both the mile run and three mile run. In the next Commonwealth Games, Keino won the 1500 metres and was third in the 5000 metres.

At the 1968 Summer Olympics in Mexico City, he won the 1500 metres gold medal (defeating American favourite and world record holder Jim Ryun by 20 metres, the largest winning margin in the history of the event)[7] and 5000 m silver medal. Four years later, he won the 3000 metres steeplechase gold and 1500 metres silver at the 1972 Summer Olympics in Munich, Germany. He retired in 1973.[5] He is on the cover of the October 1968 issue of Track and Field News, the first issue following the Olympics.[8] He shared the cover of the September 1969 issue with Naftali Bon.[9]

After athletics[edit]

With his wife, Phyllis Keino, he has dedicated significant efforts to humanitarian work in Eldoret, Kenya. They have established the Lewa Children's Home for orphans, the KipKeino Primary School in 1999, and the Kip Keino Secondary School in 2009.[10]

For his work with orphans, he shared Sports Illustrated magazine's "Sportsmen and Sportswomen of the Year" award in 1987 with seven others, characterized as "Athletes Who Care". In 1996, he was inducted into the World Sports Humanitarian Hall of Fame.

Kipchoge Keino Stadium in Eldoret is named after him.[5]

In 2007, he was made an honorary Doctor of Law by the University of Bristol.[11] Earlier, Egerton University in Nakuru had awarded him an honorary degree. In July 2012, he received further recognition from the City of Bristol after the Kenyan Olympic Committee, under his presidency, made Bristol the training base for its athletes in preparation for the London 2012 Olympics. The Bristol City Council awarded him freedom of the city, making him the first to receive this honour from Bristol since Sir Winston Churchill[5]

On 5 August 2016, at the Olympic opening ceremony in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Keino was awarded the first Olympic Laurel, for outstanding service to the Olympic movement.[12]

Personal life[edit]

Keino resides on a farm in Western Kenya where he controls and runs a charitable organization for orphans. He is married to Phyllis Keino. Their son Martin was a two-time NCAA champion and highly successful pace-setter.


  1. ^ a b c d "Kip Keino". Sports Reference LLC. Retrieved 10 June 2015.
  2. ^ "Kipchoge Keino". International Association of Athletics Federations. Retrieved 10 June 2015.
  3. ^ "IAAF Hall Of Fame". International Association of Athletics Federations. Retrieved 14 January 2015.
  4. ^ "Focus on Africa : Eliud Kipchoge (KEN)". International Association of Athletics Federations. 9 March 2006.
  5. ^ a b c d Legendary runner with a heart of gold[permanent dead link], Daily Nation, 27 August 2007.
  6. ^ "Kip roots for 'Olympic Sevens'", Daily Nation, 23 April 2009.
  7. ^ Kipchoge Keino,, 23 June 2004.
  8. ^ "1969 Covers (18-issue year)". Archived from the original on 3 March 2016. Retrieved 7 August 2016.
  9. ^ "1968 Covers (17-issue year)". Archived from the original on 4 March 2016. Retrieved 7 August 2016.
  10. ^ "Keino's remarkable legacy runs deep in the Rift Valley". HeraldScotland. Retrieved 2 May 2018.
  11. ^ "Honorary degrees awarded today". University of Bristol. 17 July 2007.
  12. ^ "The Latest: Keino gives heartfelt speech after Olympic award". Lincoln Journal Star. Associated Press. 5 August 2016. Archived from the original on 20 August 2016. Retrieved 5 August 2016.

External links[edit]

Preceded by
East Germany Siegfried Herrmann
Men's 3000 m World Record Holder
27 August 1965 – 14 September 1972
Succeeded by
Belgium Emiel Puttemans
Sporting positions
Preceded by
United States Bob Schul
Men's 5000 m Best Year Performance
Succeeded by
Australia Ron Clarke