Sport in East Africa is dominated by talks of athletics and marathons but little do people know that the first woman to win an Olympic medal from Kenya was Pamela Jelimo in 2008.
The region has produced many legendary runners who will see a race from Lagos to Abuja (a trip that takes a car at least 14 hours) as a walk in the park.
Here are 10 famous athletes from Kenya and Tanzania.
Famous Kenyan Athletes
1. Lornah Kiplagat
Lornah Kiplagat is a Dutch long-distance runner. She was born in Kabiemit, Rift Valley Province, Kenya but emigrated to the Netherlands in 1999.
She started and gained Dutch citizenship in 2003. She competited at the 2004, 2008 and 2012 Summer Olympics, was the 2007 gold medallist at the IAAF World Cross Country Championships.
2. Hilda Kibet
Kibet is another Kenyan-born Dutch runner. Her sister is Sylvia Kibet and she is the niece of Lornah Kiplagat.
She obtained Dutch nationality in October 2007. Kibet's longtime partner is Dutch marathon runner Hugo van den Broek. Her great-aunt, who is only six years her senior, is fellow runner Lornah Kiplagat.
3. Janeth Jepkosgei
Janeth Jepkosgei Busienei is a Kenyan middle distance runner and former world champion. She made Kenyan history on 28 August 2007, when she won gold in the World Championship 800 m final in Osaka, becoming the first female Kenyan middle distance runner to achieve gold over 800m.
4. Pamela Jelimo
Jelimo is a middle-distance runner, specialising in the 800 metres. She is the first Kenyan woman to win an Olympic goal medal which was achieved at the 2008 Olympics when she was 18-years-old. She holds both the 800m world junior record and the senior African record.
5. Catherine Ndereba
Catherine Nyambura Ndereba was once described by a Chicago Tribune sportswriter as the greatest women's marathoner of all time.
She has twice won the marathon at the World Championships in Athletics and won silver medals in the Olympics in 2004 and 2008. She is also a four-time winner of the Boston Marathon. Ndereba broke the women's marathon world record in 2001, running 2:18:47 at the Chicago Marathon.
6. Wilson Kipketer
Wilson Kosgei Kipketer is a Kenyan-born Danish former middle distance runner. He currently holds the indoor world records at the 1000 and 800 metres distance.
He dominated the 800m distance for a decade, remaining undefeated for a three-year period and running 8 of the 17 currently all-time fastest times. During this time however, he never won an Olympic gold medal.
He did, however, win gold medals in three successive editions of the IAAF World Championships in Athletics.
7. Asbel Kiprop
Kiprop specializes in the 1500 metres winning the gold medal at the event in the 2008 Summer Olympics after the original winner, Rashid Ramzi, tested positive for doping. Kiprop has won two World Championship titles in the event, in 2011 and 2013.
He won his first major title at the 2007 All-Africa Games, taking the 1500m gold medal, and also won the event at the 2010 African Championships in Athletics.
8. Brimin Kipruto
Brimin Kipruto specialises in the 3000 metres steeplechaseThe Korkitony-born runner holds a personal best of 7:53.64 minutes which is the second fastest time ever run, and the African Record.
He won a silver medal at the 2004 Summer Olympics at the age of nineteen and improved to win the gold medal at the 2008 Beijing Olympics four years later.
9. Ruth Bosibori
Bosibori Nyangau is a Kenyan middle distance runner who specializes in the 3000 metres steeplechase. In July 2007 she became the first All-Africa Games champion in the event, as it was staged for the first time.
10. Pauline Konga
Pauline Konga is a retired Kenyan long-distance runner. At the 1996 Summer Olympics she won the silver medal in the 5000 metres, making her the first Kenyan woman to win an Olympic medal.
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1. Suleiman Nyambui
Suleiman Nyambui is a former track athlete from Tanzania who specialized in various long-distance disciplines. Nyambui won the bronze medal at the 1978 All-Africa Games, the silver medal in 5000 metres at the 1980 Summer Olympics, and finished first at three consecutive marathons between 1987 and 1988
2. Samson Ramadhani Nyonyi
He a Tanzanian marathon runner. He was the gold medalist at the 2006 Commonwealth Games that took place in Melbourne, Australia with the result at 2:11:29.
3. Zakia Mrisho Mohamed
She is a Tanzanian long distance runner who specialises in track and road running. She represented her country in the 5000 metres at the 2008 Olympic Games.
4. Juma Ikangaa
He is a marathon runner from Tanzania, a sentimental favorite in Boston after finishing second three years in a row at the Boston Marathon from 1988-1990.
He has finished in the 1983,1984 and 1986 Australian and Japan marathons. He also finished first in the 1987 Beijing marathon and the 1989 New York marathon.
5. John Nada Saya
John was a Tanzanian long-distance runner. Nada died in Arusha, Tanzania sometime between August 4/5, 2011. The cause of his death is not known at this time.
He also won the 2001 Milan Marathon, setting a personal best of 2:08:57 hours.
6. Zebedayo Bayo
He is a Tanzanian long-distance runner who specializes in the marathon. He won the City-Pier-City Loop half marathon in the Hague in 2000.
7. Dickson Marwa Mkami
Mkami is a Tanzanian long-distance runner who competes in both track and road running. He represented Tanzania at the 2006 Commonwealth Games and the 2008 Olympic Games
8. Zakariah Barie
The now retired Tanzanian long-distance runner who specialized in the 10,000 metres. He won the silver medal at the 1982 Commonwealth Games, finished thirteenth at the1984 Olympic games.
9. Filbert Bayi Sanka
A former Tanzanian middle-distance runner of the 1970s who set the world records for 1500 metres in 1974 and the mile in 1975. He is still the 1500m Commonwealth record holder.
10. Said Maulid
Said Maulidi Kalukula is a Tanzanian-Congolese football striker currently playing for Onze Bravos.
Kalukula immigrated 2002 to the Republic of the Congo and lost his nationality in 2004 he obtained the Tanzanian passport.
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