Kelvin Kiptum: How His Three Marathons Compare to Eliud Kipchoge’s After His Death

Kelvin Kiptum: How His Three Marathons Compare to Eliud Kipchoge’s After His Death

Edwin Kiplagat
updated at February 13, 2024 at 11:54 AM
  • Kelvin Kiptum and Eliud Kipchoge have won 19 marathons
  • Kiptum ran in three marathons before his death on Sunday
  • The two Kenyan stars were expected to dominate in 2024

Kelvin Kiptum and Eliud Kipchoge are Kenyan marathon superstars. These two stars have run the four fastest marathon times.

The late Kiptum shattered Kipchoge's world record at the 2023 Chicago Marathon, becoming the first man to break the 2:01 barrier.

Kelvin Kiptum, Eliud Kipchoge, London Marathon, Chicago Marathon, Berlin Marathon, Rotterdam Marathon, Tokyo Marathon
Kelvin Kiptum and Eliud Kipchoge could face each other at the 2024 Paris Olympics. Photos by Naomi Baker and Michael Reaves.
Source: Getty Images

Kipchoge confirmed he will run at the 2024 Paris Olympics, while Kiptum had expressed his intention to take part too, before his death on Sunday, February 11. The youngster died in a road accident alongside his coach.

Kiptum's marathon career only started less than two years ago and was considered one of the best in the business. Furthermore, many tipped him to breach the two-hour barrier.

Meanwhile, the veteran is the only person to run a marathon in under two hours, but it was an unofficial race.

So, how do Kipchoge and Kiptum's first three career marathons compare? Sports Brief takes a look.

Kipchoge and Kiptum's marathon debut

Kipchoge - Hamburg Marathon

The double Olympic champion made his marathon debut on April 21, 2013, at the Haspa Marathon Hamburg, where he set a course record of 2:05:30 to win the race, per World Athletics. Winning this event was just the start of his meteoric rise to superstardom.

Eliud Kipchoge, Kenya, Kelvin Kiptum, Hamburg Marathon, Ineos
Eliud Kipchoge celebrates after winning the 2013 Hamburg Marathon. Photo by Christian Charisius/Picture Alliance.
Source: Getty Images

Kiptum - Valencia Marathon

The 24-year-old started his marathon career at the Valencia Marathon on December 4, 2022. In that race, he clocked 2:01:53 to win, becoming the third man to run under two hours and two minutes. The time was the third fastest marathon of all time then, behind Kipchoge and Kenenisa Bekele of Ethiopia.

Kipchoge and Kiptum's second marathons

Kipchoge - Berlin Marathon

Kipchoge's debut at the Berlin Marathon in 2013 did not end in victory. He finished second behind compatriot Wilson Kipsang, who set a world record of 2:03:23. Kipchoge finished second with a time of 2:04:05.

Kiptum - London Marathon

Kiptum produced one of the greatest performances of all time in the marathon last year at the London Marathon. It was just his second marathon after the Valencia event. He finished in 2:01:25, the second fastest time then. This race catapulted him to global recognition.

Kipchoge and Kiptum's third marathons

Kipchoge - Rotterdam Marathon

The 39-year-old crossed the finish line first at the 2014 Rotterdam Marathon in the Netherlands. He clocked 2:05:00 to win his second marathon. By his third marathon, he had not run in a World Marathon Major.

Kiptum - Chicago Marathon

The youngster was tipped to break Kipchoge's world record, but few thought it would come as early as 2023. In October last year, he obliterated Kipchoge's 2022 world record by 34 seconds, becoming the first man to run under 2:01 in a record-eligible marathon. It was an epic performance in only his third marathon, and he clocked 2:00:35.

Kiptum had participated in two World Marathon Majors in his third marathon race.


Eliud Kipchoge

Kelvin Kiptum










Kipchoge has won 16 marathons from 19 races. He has won two straight Olympic medals and is the greatest marathoner of all time.

Kiptum won all his marathons and has made a better start than Kipchoge.

All stats courtesy of World Athletics.

Kipchoge pays tribute to Kiptum

Sports Brief earlier reported on Kipchoge mourning Kiptum following his death on Sunday.

The 24-year-old was seen as a potential successor to Kipchoge, who has dominated the men's marathon in the last decade.

Kipchoge shared a moving tribute on his Instagram.

"I am deeply saddened by the tragic passing of the Marathon World record holder and rising star Kelvin Kiptum. An athlete who had a whole life ahead of him to achieve incredible greatness. I offer my deepest condolences to his young family. May God comfort you during this trying time," the double Olympic champion said.
Edwin Kiplagat photo
Edwin Kiplagat
Edwin Kiplagat has five years of experience in journalism working as a Sports Editor at Africa Insight Communications and ESPN. Edwin Kiplagat is a Bachelor's Degree holder in journalism from the Multimedia University of Kenya.
Eliud Kipchoge