The were tears of joy and sadness amongst the 105 competitors.
As soon as Uganda’s Stephen Kiprotich crossed the finish line at the Olympic Marathon in London last week, thousands of people not there were rushing to their computers to Google just who this obscure runner was.
After all, he wasn’t really considered a pre-race favorite–someone to defeat the likes of the great Wilson Kipsang or Abel Kirui.
“He came to us four years ago, and we know that training in Uganda is very difficult so we directed him to coach Patrick Sang’s group in Kapsabet,” said Dutch manager Jos Hermens. “He’s in a good group, and he’s beating those guys. But I did not expect him to be Olympic champion. To be honest, I was betting on [silver medalist] Abel Kirui.”