Kipkemoi, the hare that 'took' Barcelona passes the confinement with Messi
Most of you will remember the beautiful story that the Zurich Marató de Barcelona 2017 left us. A test that ended with a totally unexpected end, full of romance. Ethiopian Sisay Jisa Mekonnen was the big favorite to prevail in the streets of Barcelona. In fact, it boded well for the first 35 kilometers of the race. He was in the lead accompanied by one of his hares, the Kenyan Jonah Kipkemoi Chesum, but an injury to the femoral biceps forced him to leave. Kipkemoi was alone and before the opportunity of his life. And he did not waste it. It was imposed with a time of 2:08:57.
A story full of overcoming
But it is that the story of Kipkemoi has even more epic. Born in Iten, birthplace of the best long distance runners in the world, Jonah suffered serious burns as a child after a fire that left him with injuries to his arm and right hand, being visibly disfigured. Still, he didn't give up on his dream of being an elite athlete. And he got it. He represented Kenya at the 2012 London Paralympic Games and became the first Paralympic athlete in history to win the Barcelona Marathon. 3,000 euros for the hare service and 10,000 for winning and losing 2 hours and 9 minutes.
A cow was bought with the prize
He invested the prize in a cow to have a future and be able to sell your milk. The cow, which he called Barcelona, had a calf, which he called Messi. Since the organization of the own Zurich Marató de Barcelona they have spoken with Kipkemoi to find out how the confinement is happening. “All the countries have canceled their tests, it is a very difficult year. We just hope that this pandemic ends soon and we can resume our normalcy. ” Undoubtedly, as both Totti Corbalan and Marc Roig, both based in Iten and Kaptagat, training some of the best Kenyan athletes, recently commented to us on the Corridor Exchange, that uncertainty is a major problem in preparing for the tests that are planned in autumn.
Waiting to compete again
"Only in racing can we earn a living"Says Jonah, who is well with his family and taking care of his cows and calves waiting to put his sights on a marathon or half marathon again. Precisely the mark achieved in Barcelona (2:08:57) in 2017 is his best record in the marathon, while on average he has a PB of 1:02:04 achieved in Cardiff in 2016. In 10k his PB is from 2017 in France (28:32).