New Africa Magazine has named world marathon record holder Brigid Kosgei and world 10,000m record holder Joshua Cheptegei as the Most Influential Persons in 2020.
The reigning London marathon champion Kosgei and world 10,000m champion Cheptegei were among the 100 prominent persons listed by NewAfrica magazine as the influential Africans of 2020 due to their resilience and stellar performances in a sporting season, which was hit hard by the Covid-19 pandemic.
This year, Kosgei defended her London marathon title in October while Cheptegei broke three world records in 5km, 5,000m and 10,000m.
Last year, Kosgei became the youngest runner to win London marathon on her way to a world record win in Chicago.
“Nothing was more normal in a year more abnormal than any in current memory than that Brigid Kosgei should win the London Marathon. After all, she had done it the year before. Yet the circumstances could not have been more different – and more testing,” NewAfrica said.
For Cheptegei, his journey to the list of world record breakers started with a 5km road racing record in Monaco in 12:51
He set new world records in the 5,000 metres in a time of 12:35.36 at the Diamond League meeting in Monaco and the 10,000 metres (26:11.00) in Valencia, to become the 10th man in history to hold both two long-distance records.
In March, although Covid-19 had resulted in either postponement or cancellation of several international race.
Cheptegei’s 5,000m victory has been nominated for World Athletics’ new Covid-19 Inspiration Award.
According to NewAfrica magazine, the race was testament to his tenacity as he got there only after an arduous 80-hour journey, which involved two lay-overs and a charter flight arranged by his country’s President Yoweri Museveni