Distance runner Faith Kipyegon was given $35,000 and a house by Kenyan President William Ruto on Tuesday (June 13) as a reward for breaking two world records in the space of a week.
Kipyegon, who met with Ruto at the president’s office, said she would now fulfill a promise she had made to buy her father a new car.
The 29-year-old Kipyegon, a two-time Olympic champion in the 1,500 meters, set a new 1,500 world record in Florence, Italy on June 2 when she broke the eight-year-old mark set by Genzebe Dibaba of Ethiopia. Kipyegon became the first woman to go under 3 minutes, 50 seconds with her 3:49.11.
She broke the 5,000 meters record last Friday at the Paris Diamond League meet by clocking 14:05.20, winning that race ahead of former world record-holder Letesenbet Gidey of Ethiopia.
“Faith has made Kenya incredibly proud,” Ruto said. “She stands as a shining model of consistency, discipline, hard work, as well as family. Faith is a great Kenyan woman — a mother, a wife and a world champion rolled into one.”
Ruto pledged that the Kenyan government will also give similar rewards to future world-record breakers.