Eliud Kipchoge and Jemima Sumgong after winning at the 2016 London Marathon (© Getty Images / AFP)
The Association of International Marathons and Distance Races (AIMS) named Eliud Kipchoge and Jemima Sumgong the male and female winners of the AIMS Best Marathon Runner Award for 2016.
Kipchoge and Sumgong, both of Kenya, were selected by an expert panel on behalf of AIMS members, made up of 410 of the world’s leading distance races from more than 110 countries and territories.
Their achievements over the past year will be recognised at the fourth annual AIMS Best Marathon Runner Awards Dinner Reception in Athens, Greece, on 11 November 2016.
This is the second consecutive year that Kipchoge, 31, will receive the award. In April he won the London Marathon for the second straight time, setting a course record of 2:03:05. He then followed that up by winning his first – and Kenya’s second – Olympic gold medal in the marathon, in a time of 2:08:44.
Sumgong, 31, also enjoyed an impressive year. Despite falling, she recovered to win the London Marathon in April in 2:22:58. She then travelled to Rio where she captured Kenya’s first gold medal in the women’s marathon, with a time of 2:24:04.
“I am delighted to receive this award for the second year in a row,” Kipchoge said. “I really enjoyed receiving the Best Marathon Runner Award last year in Athens and I am very pleased to have been recognised by AIMS and their members from around the world again. It is a great honour to receive this award.”
“It is so special for me to be recognised in this way by AIMS, their members and sponsors,” Sumgong said. “I would like to thank them for awarding me in recognition of my achievements this year. I have been delighted with my form this year and this is a wonderful way to have my efforts recognised by the people at the top of organising my sport at the highest level.”
“Jemima and Eliud are clearly the outstanding performers of our sport in 2016,” said AIMS President Paco Borao.
“It will be our great pleasure to recognise them here in such a special location for all marathon runners, where their own rightful place of history making in the modern day is recorded for all time alongside over 2,500 years of marathon history in the home of the marathon Athens, Greece. They will be warmly recognised by our members at our congress here in Athens next month.”
The awards reception, held in conjuction with the 21st AIMS Congress, will also see distance running legend Haile Gebrselassie recognised with the AIMS Lifetime Achievement Award. Additionally, the AIMS Green Award and AIMS Social Award will be given to AIMS members who have demonstrated best practice in event organisation.
AIMS for the IAAF