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After missing the Tokyo Olympics, Geoffrey Kamworor sets his sight on winning marathon Gold in Eugene.
Updated August 23, 2022
When Geoffrey Kamworor was hit by a motorcycle while training near his home in June 2020, an accident that resulted in him suffering a fractured tibia, it felt like his world came crashing down. The Kenyan was in top shape and was starting to build up for the marathon majors as well as the Tokyo Olympics, which had then been postponed to 2021.
His road to recovery was well underway, and after staying indoors for two months while on crutches, Kamworor began to make little progress, and there were indications that he would make it to the Olympics.
“I was introduced to cycling for four months as it helped a great deal on my road to full fitness,” Kamworor told NN running. “It was my first time cycling, and at first, it was really straining, but I followed the cadence to the latter while moving on certain gears.”
The recovery went so fast that he was able to finish second in the Istanbul half marathon in under one hour. Two months later, Kamworor ran a dominant race to win the men’s 10000m at the Kenyan trials as he set his sights on winning his first Olympic medal in Tokyo.
Kamworor’s dream was cut short in July last year as it was confirmed that he will be missing the games after he developed a painful spot in his foot that is preventing him from being able to run 25 laps on the track.
That moment was a watershed one, but Kamworor picked up the pieces and returned in December 2021 to race to a new Personal Best of 2:05.23 to finish fourth at the Valencia Marathon.
Psychologically, it was massive for him, considering the running world seemed to have moved on from him and the media focused their attention on other distance runners who were breaking records left, right, and center during the fall of 2020 leading up to the spring of 2021.
Joshua Cheptegei with in the 5k and 10k, Kibiwott Kandie in the half marathon, Bridgid Kosgei in the marathon, and Eluid Kipchoge running 1:59 in the INEOS challenge in Berlin. All of seeing his teammates and compatriots continue to run great times must have played largely on his mind, especially as he suffered setbacks on a few occasions when he tried to return.
Seven months now, Kamworor is seeking redemption. A chance to win his first marathon Gold at the world championships taking place in Eugene.
Although the 29-year-old from Nyen has performed to high levels on the track at the champs, where he earned 10,000m silver at the 2015 World Championships in Beijing, it was on grass and roads that he had excelled, winning the world cross-country senior titles in 2015 and 2017, and world half marathon titles in 2014, 2016 and 2018.
Kamworor has also won the prestigious New York Marathon in 2017 and finished third two times in Berlin; the Kenyan knows he holds the hopes of the East African Nation in the absence of marathon great, Kipchoge as they hope to take the Gold of rivals Ethiopia.
It is worth noting that Kamworor ran 2:06:12 for the marathon while he was still a teenager, which was simply extraordinary, but he knew really the success was in the cross country and the longer distance on the track.
During this time frame of him, he seemed to have been growing under the wings of Kipchoge as they trained together. Still, there was the feeling he was destined for the road.
The time is now. Kamworor looks confident and assured going into Hayward field. But he will face stiff competition. The marathon field looks wide open this year as other stalwarts of the men’s marathon will loke to win their first title on US soil.
Lelisa Desisa, a three-time world marathon major, and Lawrence Cherono, a two-time Boston champion, have been listed and will pose a major threat to Kamworor. 2017 world champion Geoffrey Kirui could only make the reserve team for Kenya, but still, he has proven he can deliver on the big stage.
Abdi Negaaye of the Netherlands and Bashir Abdi of Belgium, the training partners who took silver and bronze behind Kipchoge in Tokyo, will be hoping to go one better this year, too.
The stars seemed to have aligned for Kamworor in order for him to win Gold in Eugene. But like he overcame obstacles to get to be able to compete again, he must get past this hurdle in human form.
Update: The three-time World Cross Country Champion and three-time World Athletics Half Marathon Champion finished fifth in the 2022 World Athletics Marathon in Eugene, Oregon, in 2:07.14 on July 17, 2022. Geoffrey ran his best competition since his tough injury last year. Watch for the Kenyan star to race one of the big fall marathons.
Watch for Geoffrey in a fall marathon.
Geoffrey Kamworor, a member of the NN Racing Team, is sponsored by COROS.
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