Feature27 Apr 2024

Gotytom Gebreslase: building a legacy


Gotytom Gebreslase training in Kality (© Dan Vernon)

Ethiopia’s 2022 world marathon champion Gotytom Gebreslase has multiple global accolades to her name, but the 29-year-old still has one big goal left to achieve: to etch her name in the history books with success at the Paris Olympics. 

She allows World Athletics Inside Track an exclusive look at her training, opens the doors to her home and provides insight into Ethiopian running culture.



“Ethiopia and running are closely intertwined, as exemplified by Abebe Bikila, who ran barefoot to win and represent his country. I feel immense happiness knowing that I am also a runner,” says Gebreslase, who went on to claim marathon silver at the 2023 World Championships in Budapest after her win in Oregon in 2022.

“The Olympics is considered the ultimate goal for athletes. When I think about the Olympics, I remember the one where Tirunesh Dibaba became a two-time medallist. I have achieved success by becoming a world champion, which is considered one of the greatest accomplishments for an athlete. God has helped make me a world champion and becoming an Olympic medallist is my dream, I’ll work hard for it.

“Running is something we pass on from generation to generation. 

“If there’s a particularly strong athlete in the group, we aspire to emulate them. There’s no reason to consider oneself as less than them, especially when we’re all training together and following the same programme. In a team with strong athletes, you will inevitably become stronger, too.

“I believe that Ethiopia and running are inseparable.”

Pages related to this article