Uganda’s best runners come from the slopes of Mount Elgon, and belong to the ‘Sabiny’ tribe. The Sabiny are a sub-sub tribe of the larger Kalenjins tribe who inhabit large parts of Western Kenya and are known for producing world-class athletes. 95% of the Ugandan Olympic team are mid and long-distance runners from Mount Elgon. Most of the runners live and train from the central town Kapchorwa, which literally means ‘Home of Friends’ in local language. In this town at least five running camps can be found such as Global Sports Communication, Police and Prisons.
Uganda’s government is currently constructing a National High Altitude Training Center for talented runners and endurance athletes. This project is named after Olympic marathon champion Stephen Kiprotich. Though construction has started back in 2010, progress has been slow, mostly because of lack of funds and tough conditions (rain and mud) on Mount Elgon. However, of recent the project is moving faster.
Joshua Cheptegei comes from the village of Kwoti, 5km. from Kapchorwa Town. Of recent Joshua built his new home, on a hill just 1km. from Kapchorwa Town. In August 2014, on my first visit to Kapchorwa, I had the privilege to visit Joshua’s family in Kwoti:
I got to know Joshua is a humble and social man who likes to interact with new people. Last Christmas season, Joshua played a game of netball with our friends at Home of Friends Guesthouse:
Olympic gold medalist Stephen Kiprotich
Stephen Kiprotich was born and raised from the rural village of Tegeres, in the green hills between Kapchorwa and Sipi Falls. After his gold medal, the President of Uganda – Yoweri Museveni – built a new home for Stephen and his family. The villages along the road to his home got electricity in 2016 because it needed to reach to his home.
Rising champion Jacob Kiplimo
Rising champion Jacob Kiplimo comes from Kapchorwa’s neighboring district Kween. Kiplimo comes from Likil village, Kaseko parish, Benet sub county, in Kween district. In June 2018 I took some photos of the beautiful lush landscape in Kiplimo’s backyard:
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