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Uganda’s Jacob Kiplimo Wins Gold on Home Soil at the 2017 IAAF World Cross Country Championships

Jacob Kiplimo produced an outstanding performance to win gold for Uganda in the Men’s U-20 race at the IAAF World Cross Country Championships, Kampala 2017.

It is the country’s first ever gold medal at a World Cross Country Championship.

Following his win, Kiplimo came into the race as one of the athletes to watch. The 2016 world U-20 10,000m bronze medalist, covered the 8km course in 22 minutes 40seconds, ending Kenya’s and Ethiopian’s dominance in the event.

Eritrean Yemane Haileselassie went ahead in the first minutes of the race followed by a pack that included; Ugandan Victor Kiplangat, Kenyan’s Wesley Ledama, Edwin Kiplangat Bett, and Amos Kirui and Ethiopia’s Solomon Berihu, with Kiplimo following suit.

The Eritrean finished the first lap in first place alongside Ethiopian Solomon Berihu and the entire Kenyan squad.

In the second lap, Kenya’s Richard Yator Kimunyan, the 2015 World U-18 5000m champion, overtook the pack briefly taking turns up front with Kiplimo and Ledama while Berihu and Kirui maintained a close gap.

The backing of the home crowd at the Kololo grounds nudged Kiplimo forward to take charge and he eventually broke away from Kirui and Kiplangat, going into the final lap to send the crowd into celebration.

Kiplimo who was congratulated by Uganda’s President Yoweri Kaguta Museveni said, “Yes yes yes, I always thought I could win.

[perfectpullquote align=”full” cite=”” link=”” color=”” class=”” size=””]“It was a very good race. When I decided to break away going into the last lap, I knew I was going to win.”[/perfectpullquote]

As he powered on, Amdework Walelegn, who finished fourth in the 10,000m at last year’s World U-20 Championships, tried to save the day for Ethiopia by pushing hard to close the gap.

He moved past Kirui and Kiplangat with Kiplimo as his next target but the attack did not yield much fruit, as the Ugandan continued to hold onto his advantage.

Kiplimo crossed the line at 22:40 with Walelegn three seconds behind taking silver. Kimunyan also got a podium finish nine seconds behind.



Jacob Kiplimo won the men’s U-20 race to give Uganda its first gold medal at a World Cross Country Championships (Roger Sedres) © Copyright

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