King Kiplimo ensures Uganda retains world cross championship title

23-year-old Jacob Kiplimo ensured the senior men’s title at the World Athletics Cross Country Championships remained with Uganda after bagging gold during the race in Australia.

Four years ago in Aarhus, Denmark, Kiplimo, then 18 years only finished second in the senior men’s race, behind the eventual winner, Joshua Cheptegei.

However, during the race in Bathurst, Kiplimo showed he has come of age when he put up a brilliant performance to finish the race in 29 minutes and 17seconds.

Starting slowly, the 23 year old , together with Joshua Cheptegei held back in the on the first lap while other Ugandan teammates, Isaac Kibet, Samuel Kibet and Martin Kiprotich ran at the front of the pack.

The pace increased slightly on the second lap but Uganda’s Kiprotich continued to lead as Cheptegei and Kiplimo also pushed forward.

Towards the end, the Ugandan runner showed what he is made of with a comfortable lead that he maintained to the finish line to ensure Uganda retained the world cross championship title for men.

Ethiopia’s Berihu Aregawi  came second whereas defending champion, Joshua Cheptegei bagged bronze during the race.

“The course was really good. Even with lots of wind, it was really intense. I think for me it was really good because there are lots of hills where we train in Uganda. It was not easy but I did my best,”Kiplimo said.

Kiplimo has previously won a silver medal in the world cross-country men’s senior race in 2019  and bronze medals at the 2021 Olympic and 2022 world 10000m races.

The 23 year old is also Commonwealth winner in  the races in 2020 and 2022.

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