Eldoret town was on Sunday in celebratory mood after Olympic Marathon Champion Eliud Kipchoge won the 44th Berlin Marathon.
Hundreds of athletes from the North Rift region converged on the Klique Restaurant along the Eldoret- Nakuru highway to view the event organized by Bank of Africa and Isuzu East Africa.
Among those who attended included Kipchoge’s wife, Grace Sugut and his three children, Gordon Kiprop, Lynn Sugut and Griffins Kiprono.
Also present were athletes who have won races in various categories as well as Kipchoge’s coach Richard Metto.
Others present were former two-time Boston Marathon champion Moses Tanui, Brimin Kipruto (3,000 steeplechase), marathoners Diana Sigei, Laban Korir, World Cross Country champion and Kipchoge’s training mate Geoffrey Kamworor and 2005 World 5,000 metres champion Benjamin Limo among others.
There was an excitement when Kipchoge surged forward and overtook Ethiopia’s 26-year-old Guye Adola who was making his debut in the race.
“We had anticipated Kipchoge to break the world record but we are content with the win which is a pride to the country,” said Mrs Kipchoge.
The world record is held by Kenya’s Dennis Kimetto at 2:02:57 set 2014. Kipchoge clocked 2:03:34 in Sunday’s race.
“The humid conditions slowed Kipchoge’s pace denying him chance to break the world record. The drops of water normally affects the athlete in the race and that might have contributed to a slower race,” said Boston Marathon champion Edna Kiplagat.
Metto was excited by the victory terming the race a very competitive one.
“We did enough preparations ahead of the race and I must say he has done his best in the race today. I know he can still do it when the weather conditions are favourable,” said Metto.
Isuzu East Africa Communications Manager Duncan Muhindi said the company was committed to sponsoring more athletic events.
The company had donated a brand new Isuzu 4x4 Dmax to be won by athlete who could have broken the world record.
Isuzu East Africa last week signed a two-year, Sh15 million partnership with Kipchoge which includes giving the Olympic champion an Isuzu pick-up vehicle for personal and professional use.