Vivian Cheruiyot

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Vivian Cheruiyot
Vivian Cheruiyot Rio 2016.jpg
Cheruiyot at the 2016 Rio Olympics
Personal information
Full nameVivian Jepkemoi Cheruiyot
Born (1983-09-11) 11 September 1983 (age 39)
Keiyo, Rift Valley, Kenya[1]
Height1.59 m (5 ft 3 in)
Weight40 kg (88 lb)[1]
Event(s)Long-distance running
Achievements and titles
World finals
  • 2007 Osaka
  • 5000 m,  Silver
  • 2009 Berlin
  • 5000 m,  Gold
  • 2011 Daegu
  • 5000 m,  Gold
  • 10,000 m,  Gold
  • 2015 Beijing
  • 10,000 m,  Gold
Olympic finals
  • 2000 Sydney
  • 5000 m, 14th
  • 2008 Beijing
  • 5000 m, 4th
  • 2012 London
  • 5000 m,  Silver
  • 10,000 m,  Bronze
  • 2016 Rio
  • 5000 m,  Gold
  • 10,000 m,  Silver
Personal best(s)

Vivian Jepkemoi Cheruiyot (born 11 September 1983)[2] is a Kenyan long-distance runner. She represented Kenya at the Summer Olympics in 2000, 2008, 2012, and 2016, winning the silver medal in the 5000 metres and bronze in the 10,000 metres at the 2012 London Olympics as well as gold in the 5000 m and silver in the 10,000 m at the 2016 Rio Olympics, setting a new Olympic record in the former. Cheruiyot won the silver medal in the 5000 m at the 2007 World Championships in Athletics and became the world champion in the event at the 2009 edition, repeating this achievement in 2011, when she also won the 10000 m. She added gold for the latter event at the 2015 World Championships in Athletics. After taking a silver in the 3000 metres at the 2010 World Indoor Championships, Cheruiyot won a number of outdoor 5000 m titles that year, becoming Commonwealth Games, African and Continental Cup champion, as well as winning the Diamond League title.

She is a three-time Diamond League champion having also won the 2011 and 2012 edition. She is the Kenyan record holder for the 2000 m and 10,000 m. In 2012, Cheruiyot was voted Laureus World Sportswoman of the Year.


Vivian Cheruiyot is trained by Ricky Simms.[3] She was born near Keiyo in the Rift Valley Province, coming from the same village as another female runner Alice Timbilili.[4]

Her breakthrough year came in 1999: at the age of fifteen she took the junior silver medal at the 1999 IAAF World Cross Country Championships behind Werknesh Kidane. At the 1999 World Youth Championships in Athletics she won the bronze medal in the 3000 metres. Cheruiyot earned a senior call-up for the 1999 All-Africa Games, where she managed a bronze medal in the 5000 metres. She became the junior champion at the 2000 IAAF World Cross Country Championships. Cheruiyot gained selection for the 2000 Olympic Games and reached the 5000 m final after setting personal bests in the qualifying rounds. She was much slower in the final and was the last runner to finish.[5]

Cheruiyot won the silver medal at the 5000 m final of the 2007 World Championships in Osaka, Japan with a time of 14:58.50, behind Meseret Defar in 14:57.91.[6]

In early 2009 she broke the Kenyan indoor 3000 m record with a time of 8:30.53 in Birmingham, and won the World's Best 10K race in Puerto Rico.[7] In May, she won the Great Manchester Run 10K race. Cheruiyot won the women's 5000 m at the 2009 World Championships in Berlin with a time of 14 minutes 58.33 seconds, while countrywoman Sylvia Kibet took the silver. She closed the track season with a 3000 m silver and a 5000 m bronze at the 2009 IAAF World Athletics Final. She won the 2009 New Year's Eve San Silvestre Vallecana race.[8]

Cheruiyot retained her World's Best 10K title in 2010.[9] An appearance at the 2010 IAAF World Indoor Championships resulted in a silver medal in the 3000 m behind Meseret Defar. Cheruiyot then headed the Kenyan 5000 m challenge at the African Championships in Athletics in Nairobi and beat Defar on this occasion to take the African title.[10] After this, her main focus of the year was the Diamond League. She took victories in the 5000 m at the Meeting Areva and Memorial van Damme and was elected the inaugural Diamond League Trophy winner for the event on overall points.[11] She defeated Sentayehu Ejigu at the Continental Cup to take the 5000 m gold medal for Africa.[12] Another gold medal in the event came at the Commonwealth Games held that year in Delhi, where she headed a Kenyan podium sweep with Sylvia Kibet and Ines Chenonge.[13] Cheruiyot returned to Kenya to train and took an 8 km win at the Tuskys Cross Country meeting.[14] She ended the year on a high note with a win at the BOclassic 5K race on New Year's Eve.[15]

Cheruiyot began preparing for the World Cross Country Championships in January 2011 and came third at the Great Edinburgh Cross Country before overhauling Linet Masai to win the Cross de Itálica in Seville.[16][17] A second-place finish at the Kenyan Cross Country Championships guaranteed her a place in the Kenyan squad and, in contrast to her successes on the track, she was looking to win her first cross country medal on the world stage.[18] Her rival Masai led the initial charge at the World Cross Country Championships, but Cheruiyot broke away on the final lap to secure the gold medal and lead Kenya to the women's team title.[19]

She started 2012 with a win at the World's Best 10K and improved her best on the roads to 30:47 minutes.[20] She opened the Diamond League circuit with narrow wins ahead of Meseret Defar, first in the 3000 m in Doha and then over 5000 m in Rome.[21] Cheruiyot guaranteed her place at the Olympics by winning the 10,000 m trial in Nairobi in June.[22] At the Olympics, she won the silver medal in the 5000 metres and a bronze at the 10,000 metres.[23]

In 2018, she won the 2018 London Marathon with a time of 2:18:31.[2]

She took second place in the 2018 New York City Marathon, finishing in 2:26:02 far behind winner Mary Keitany in 2:22:48, and 20 seconds ahead of Shalane Flanagan who ran 2:26:22.[24]


Vivian Cheruiyot races the 10,000 m at the 2011 World Championships in Athletics held in Daegu, South Korea.
Cheruiyot celebrates her 10,000 m victory at Daegu 2011. She won also the 5000 m final six days later.
Vivian Cheruiyot (R) and Hellen Obiri (L), 1–2 in the 5000 m, celebrate their success at the 2016 Rio Olympics.

All information taken from World Athletics profile.[2]

Personal bests[edit]

Type Event Time (m:s) Venue Date Notes
Track 1500 metres 4:06.6h Nairobi, Kenya 18 May 2012
2000 metres 5:31.52 Eugene, OR, United States 7 June 2009 NR
3000 metres 8:28.66 Stuttgart, Germany 23 September 2007
3000 metres indoor 8:30.53 Birmingham, United Kingdom 21 February 2009
Two miles indoor 9:12.35 Birmingham, United Kingdom 20 February 2010
5000 metres 14:20.87 Stockholm, Sweden 29 July 2011
10,000 metres 29:32.53 Rio de Janeiro, Brazil 12 August 2016 NR
Road 5 kilometres 15:11 London, United Kingdom 6 September 2009
10 kilometres 30:47 San Juan, Puerto Rico 26 February 2012
10 miles 51:17 Portsmouth, United Kingdom 25 October 2015
Half marathon 1:06:34 Lisbon, Portugal 17 March 2019
Marathon 2:18:31 London, United Kingdom 22 April 2018

International competitions[edit]

Representing  Kenya
Year Competition Venue Position Event Time
1998 World Cross Country Championships Marrakech, Morocco 5th Junior race (6 km) 19:47
1999 World Cross Country Championships Belfast, Northern Ireland 2nd Junior race (6.124 km) 21:37
All-Africa Games Johannesburg, South Africa 3rd 5000 m 15:42.79
World Youth Championships Bydgoszcz, Poland 3rd 3000 m 9:04.42
2000 World Cross Country Championships Vilamoura, Portugal 1st Junior race (6.29 km) 20:34
2001 World Cross Country Championships Ostend, Belgium 4th Junior race (5.9 km) 20:22
African Junior Championships Réduit, Mauritius 1st 5000 m 16:19.54
2002 World Cross Country Championships Dublin, Ireland 3rd Junior race (5.962 km) 20:22
World Junior Championships Kingston, Jamaica 3rd 5000 m 15:56.04
2004 World Cross Country Championships Brussels, Belgium 8th Short race (4 km) 13:23
2006 World Cross Country Championships Fukuoka, Japan 8th Short race (4 km) 13:10
World Athletics Final Stuttgart, Germany 3rd 3000 m 8:38.86
5th 5000 m 16:07.95
2007 World Cross Country Championships Mombasa, Kenya 8th Long race (8 km) 28:10
World Championships Osaka, Japan 2nd 5000 m 14:58.50
World Athletics Final Stuttgart, Germany 2nd 3000 m 8:28.66 PB
1st 5000 m 14:56.94
2008 Olympic Games Beijing, China 4th 5000 m 15:46.32
World Athletics Final Stuttgart, Germany 2nd 3000 m 8:44.64
2nd 5000 m 14:54.60
2009 World Championships Berlin, Germany 1st 5000 m 14:57.97
World Athletics Final Thessaloniki, Greece 2nd 3000 m 8:30.61
3rd 5000 m 15:26.21
2010 World Indoor Championships Doha, Qatar 2nd 3000 m 8:51.85
African Championships Nairobi, Kenya 1st 5000 m 16:18.73
Continental Cup Split, Croatia 1st 5000 m 16:05.74
Commonwealth Games New Delhi, India 1st 5000 m 15:55.12
2011 World Cross Country Championships Punta Umbría, Spain 1st Senior race (8 km) 24:58
World Championships Daegu, South Korea 1st 5000 m 14:55.36
1st 10,000 m 30:48.98
2012 Olympic Games London, United Kingdom 2nd 5000 m 15:04.73
3rd 10,000 m 30:30.44
2015 World Championships Beijing, China 1st 10,000 m 31:41.31
2016 Olympic Games Rio de Janeiro, Brazil 1st 5000 m 14:26.17 OR
2nd 10,000 m 29:32.53 NR

Marathon competition record[edit]

Year Competition Venue Position Time Notes
2003 Vitoria Marathon Vittoria, Spain 1st 2:41:09 13 April
2017 London Marathon London, United Kingdom 4th 2:23:50 23 April
Frankfurt Marathon Frankfurt, Germany 1st 2:23:35 29 October
2018 London Marathon London, United Kingdom 1st 2:18:31 22 April
New York Marathon New York, NY, United States 2nd 2:26:02 4 November
2019 London Marathon London, United Kingdom 2nd 2:20:14 28 April
Valencia Marathon Valencia, Spain 4th 2:18:52 1 December

Circuit wins and titles[edit]

5000 metres wins, other events specified in parenthesis

National titles[edit]



  1. ^ a b "Vivian Cheruiyot". Sports Reference. Archived from the original on 17 April 2020. Retrieved 20 June 2015.
  2. ^ a b c "Vivian Jepkemoi CHERUIYOT – Athlete Profile". World Athletics. Retrieved 1 January 2021.
  3. ^ The Standard, 28 January 2007:Back with a ‘killer kick’
  4. ^ Daily Nation, 11 August 1999: No changes expected in squad
  5. ^ Athletics at the 2000 Sydney Summer Games: Women's 5,000 metres. Sports-Reference. Retrieved 27 November 2010.
  6. ^ "2007 World Championships Women's 5000m final". IAAF. Archived from the original on 26 April 2011. Retrieved 3 September 2007.
  7. ^ "Kitwara and Cheruiyot, new champions and men's record at World's Best 10K". IAAF. 1 March 2009. Retrieved 28 April 2016.
  8. ^ "favourite roles, Masai and Cheruiyot prevail in Madrid". IAAF. 1 January 2010. Retrieved 28 April 2016.
  9. ^ Kuehls, Dave (1 March 2010). "Masai and Cheruiyot take crowns in San Juan". IAAF. Retrieved 28 April 2016.
  10. ^ Negash, Elshadai (29 July 2010). "Meite, Okagbare take 100m titles, Cheruiyot over Defar again in the 5000m – African champs Day 2". IAAF. Archived from the original on 29 June 2011. Retrieved 27 November 2010.
  11. ^ Tyson Gay wraps up Diamond League title in Brussels. BBC Sport (27 August 2010). Retrieved 27 November 2010.
  12. ^ Ramsak, Bob (5 September 2010). EVENT Report – Women's 5000 Metres Archived 29 June 2011 at the Wayback Machine. IAAF. Retrieved on 27 November 2010.
  13. ^ Rowbottom, Mike (13 October 2010). "Women's relay team crowns Indian glory – Commonwealth Games, Day Seven". IAAF. Retrieved 28 April 2016.
  14. ^ Macharia, David (22 November 2010). "Cheruiyot and Rotich prevail at Tuskys Cross Country". IAAF. Retrieved 28 April 2016.
  15. ^ Sampaolo, Diego (1 January 2011). "Merga and Cheruiyot take dramatic victories in Bolzano". IAAF. Retrieved 28 April 2016.
  16. ^ Wenig, Jorg (8 January 2011). "Kipchoge and Masai prevail in snowy Edinburgh". IAAF. Retrieved 28 April 2016.
  17. ^ Valiente, Emeterio (16 January 2011). "Komon defends, Cheruiyot edges Masai in Seville". IAAF. Archived from the original on 19 January 2011. Retrieved 19 January 2011.
  18. ^ Mutuota, Mutwiri (19 February 2011). "Mutai and Masai take hard fought wins in Nairobi". IAAF. Retrieved 28 April 2016.
  19. ^ Johnson, Len (20 March 2011). "Cheruiyot wins race of champions – Women's Senior Race Report – Punta Umbria 2011". IAAF. Retrieved 28 April 2016.
  20. ^ Robinson, Javier Clavelo (27 February 2012). "Kitwara and Cheruiyot run to triple crown in San Juan 10Km". IAAF. Retrieved 28 April 2016.
  21. ^ Martin, David (31 May 2012). "Bolt's blazing 9.76 one of seven world leads on electric night in Rome – Samsung Diamond League". IAAF. Retrieved 28 April 2016.
  22. ^ Mutwiri, Mutuota (15 June 2012). "Cheruiyot takes Kenyan 10,000m Olympic Trials race in Nairobi". IAAF. Retrieved 28 April 2016.
  23. ^ "Vivian Cheruiyot Bio, Stats, and Results". Olympics at Archived from the original on 17 April 2020. Retrieved 29 June 2015.
  24. ^ "New York Road Runners".
  25. ^ Ramsak, Bob (7 February 2012). "Cheruiyot and Pistorius win prestigious world sport awards". IAAF. Retrieved 28 April 2016.

External links[edit]

Preceded by Women's Track & Field Athlete of the Year
Succeeded by
Preceded by Laureus World Sportswoman of the Year
Succeeded by
Sporting positions
Preceded by Women's 3000 m Best Year Performance
Succeeded by
Meseret Defar
Preceded by
Tirunesh Dibaba
and Meseret Defar
Women's 5000 m Best Year Performance
(shared with Meseret Defar)
Succeeded by
Tirunesh Dibaba