World Athletics President Sebastian Coe has congratulated Athletics Kenya (AK) for its “extraordinary achievements” and “immense contribution” to track and field as the Kenyan federation celebrates its 70th anniversary.
Speaking on the eve of AK celebrations, the decorated two-time Olympic 1,500 metres champion and multiple middle distances world record holder said Kenyan athletes shaped his running career and, over the years, made an immense contribution to endurance events.
“I’m hard-pressed – certainly in my events, endurance events – to think of a country that has contributed more to those events,” Coe said in a Zoom conference call with a group of African journalists.
Coe continued: “From the middle 1960s, Amos Biwott was your first Olympic medallist on the cinder tracks, and then there’s the person I regard as the father of endurance in Kip Keino. And of course, the women that have made extraordinary contributions, like Tegla Loroupe, not just on the field of play but with the refugee teams as well… Everywhere I look in my sport, I have been inspired by what Kenya has achieved.”
The President added that Kenyan athletics is more than a sport as it had firmly positioned the country in the global scheme of things.