World marathon record holder and London Marathon winner Kelvin Kiptum has died aged 24.
Kiptum died in a road accident in Kenya.
The athlete’s coach, Gervais Hakizimana, was also killed in the accident.
Kenyan President William Ruto tweeted on Monday, “Kelvin Kiptum was a star. Arguably one of the world’s finest sportsmen who broke barriers to secure a marathon record.
“He was only 24 yet, as a hero, triumphed in Valencia, Chicago, London and in other top competitions. His mental strength and discipline were unmatched. Kiptum was our future.
“An extraordinary sportsman has left an extraordinary mark in the globe. Our thoughts are with the family and the sporting fraternity. Rest In Peace.”
Kenyan member of parliament Gideon Kimaiyo also comfirmed the pair’s death in a statement on X.
Mr Kimaiyo said: “It is with heavy hearts that we learn of the passing of Kelvin Kiptum, the world marathon record holder, and his coach in a tragic accident along the Eldoret-Kaptagat road.
“Kelvin Kiptum was at the prime of his career, a legend in his own right. It’s a tough one to take.
“Our thoughts are with their families during this incredibly difficult time. The people of Keiyo South are saddened by this loss. May their souls rest in eternal peace.”
Also, Dr. Alfred N. Mutua, E.G.H., Cabinet Secretary, Ministry of Tourism and Wildlife, tweeted on Monday morning, “I was profoundly shocked and deeply saddened to learn of the devastating loss of current marathon world record holder Kelvin Kiptum and his coach, Gervais Hakizimana, through a tragic road accident. Their untimely departure has left an irreplaceable void not only in the hearts of their loved ones but also within the entire Marathon fraternity.
“As we mourn this immense loss, let us hold onto the memories of Kelvin’s remarkable achievements and the positive impact he had on so many lives. Gervais Hakizimana’s guidance and mentorship undoubtedly played a significant role in shaping Kelvin’s remarkable career.
“My heartfelt condolences go out to his family, friends, teammates, and all those who had the privilege of knowing him. May you find strength and comfort in each other during this incredibly challenging time.
“May Kelvin and Gervais find eternal peace, and may their legacies continue to inspire future generations of athletes.”
Kiptum broke the course record for the London Marathon last year.
He won the men’s event in the second-fastest marathon in history, with a time of two hours, one minute and 25 seconds.
In 2023, he broke the men’s world record at the Chicago Marathon with a time of two hours and 35 seconds.
His record was ratified by the international track federation World Athletics last week.
World Athletics president Seb Coe said: “We are shocked and deeply saddened to learn of the devastating loss of Kelvin Kiptum and his coach, Gervais Hakizimana.
“On behalf of all World Athletics we send our deepest condolences to their families, friends, teammates and the Kenyan nation.
“It was only earlier this week in Chicago, the place where Kelvin set his extraordinary marathon World Record, that I was able to officially ratify his historic time.
“An incredible athlete leaving an incredible legacy, we will miss him dearly.”