Marathon King Eliud Kipchoge Bags Laureus Exceptional Achievement Award

Feb 19 - by Mutwiri Mutuota for SportPesa News

Tennis icon, Novak Djokovic and American gymnast, Simone Biles left the glittering gala with the coveted Sportsman and Sportswoman of the year awards at the annual gathering of the biggest names in the sporting world in Monaco on Monday night

Kenyan Marathon runner Eliud Kipchoge, winner of the Laureus Academy Exceptional Award 2019 poses after receiving his award during the 2019 Laureus World Sports Awards ceremony at the Sporting Monte-Carlo complex in Monaco on February 18, 2019. PHOTO/AFP

  • The Kenyan distance running icon was honoured for his exceptional feat of lowering the world record in the classic distance on September 16, 2018 where he ran 2:01:39 at the Berlin Marathon, where he lowered the previous 2:02:57 standard set by countryman Dennis Kimetto at the same course in the biggest improvement of the mark since 1967
  • Another rising tennis star and Australian Open champion, Naomi Osaka earned the Breakthrough Award and skier Lindsey Vonn picked up the Spirit of Sport Award at the Sporting Monte-Carlo complex
  • Former Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger was honoured with a Lifetime Achievement Award having stayed with the Gunners for 22 years, winning three English Premier League and seven FA Cup crowns before he left his position at the end of last season

NAIROBI, Kenya- Olympic champion and world marathon record holder, Eliud Kipchoge, added another feather to his decorated cap when he received the Academy Exceptional Achievement prize at the star-studded 2018 Laureus World Sports Awards in Monaco on Monday night.

The Kenyan distance running icon was honoured for his exceptional feat of lowering the world record in the classic distance on September 16, 2018 where he ran 2:01:39 at the Berlin Marathon.

He lowered the previous 2:02:57 standard set by countryman Dennis Kimetto in 2014 at the same course in the biggest improvement of the marathon world record



since 1967.

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Kipchoge who became the second Kenyan to win Olympic marathon gold after 2008 champion, the late Samuel Kamau Wanijiru, at the Rio 2016 Games in Brazil, added the Laureus accolade to his 2018 IAAF Male Athlete of the Year, UN Nations Person of the Year 2018 and domestically, the Overall Sports Personality and Sportsman of the Year double at the 2018 SOYA Awards.

Tennis icon, Novak Djokovic and American gymnast, Simone Biles left the glittering gala with the coveted Laureus Sportsman and Sportswoman of the year awards at the annual gathering of the biggest names in the sporting world.

Former Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger was honoured with a Lifetime Achievement Award having stayed with the Gunners for 22 years, winning three English Premier League and seven FA Cup crowns before he left his position at the end of last season.

MUST READ: Untouchable Eliud Kipchoge Smashes Marathon World Record

Another rising tennis star and Australian Open champion, Naomi Osaka earned the Breakthrough Award and skier Lindsey Vonn picked up the Spirit of Sport Award at the Sporting Monte-Carlo complex.

Outstanding achievements

The ceremony celebrated the outstanding sporting achievements of the past year, with categories including Sportsman, Sportswoman, Team, Breakthrough, Comeback, Action and Sporting Moment. 

There were six superstars nominated for the Sportsman category, including World Cup winner Kylian Mbappe, Ballon D'or winner Luka Modric and Formula One world champion Lewis Hamilton, as well as eventual winner Djokovic. Completing the list were London Marathon winner Kipchoge and NBA superstar LeBron James.

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Gymnast Biles, tennis stars Simona Halep and Angelique Kerber, skiiers Esther Ledecka and Mikaela Shiffrin and Ironman triathlete Daniela Ryf were up for the Sportswoman trophy that Biles claimed.

The Team award was contested between NBA team Golden State Warriors, the European Ryder Cup team, the World Cup-winning France side, the Mercedes F1 team, Norway's Winter Olympic team and Real Madrid, who lifted a third consecutive Champions League title in May. The French team, coached by Didier Deschamps, won the category. 

Novak Djokovic (Laureus World Sportsman of the Year Award) with Trophy GES / Sports General / Laureus World Sports Awards 2019, 18.02.2019 Sports: Laureus World Sports Awards 2019, February 18, 2019. PHOTO/AFP

Woods was the winner in the Comeback category, in which Winter Olympians Yuzuru Hanyu, Mark McMorris, Bibioan Mentel-Spee, Vonn and Indian wrestler Vinesh Phogat were also nominated.

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Henrieta Farkasova triumphed ahead of Diede De Groot, Brian McKeever, Oksana Masters, Grigorios Polychronidis and Markus Rehm for the Disability award, presented to the athlete who shows excellent achievement in their Paralympic sport.

In the Action category, surfers Maya Gabeira, Gabriel Medina and Stephanie Gilmore went up against snowboarders Shaun White, Anna Gasser and Chloe Kim for the award that recognises an athlete who has pushed the limit of their discipline. Youngster Kim, just 18, went home with the trophy.

2018 Laureus Awards winners' list

Sportsman of the Year: Novak Djokovic

Sportsmwoman of the Year: Simone Biles

Comeback of the Year: Tiger Woods

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Breakthrough of the Year: Naomi Osaka

Sportsperson of the Year with a Disability: Henrieta Farkasova

Action Sportsperson of the Year: Chloe Kim

Team of the Year: France World Cup Team

Sporting Moment of the Year: Xia Boyu

Academy Exceptional Achievement Award: Eliud Kipchoge

Lifetime Achievement Award: Arsene Wenger

Spirit of Sport Award: Lindsey Vonn

Sport for Good Award: Yuwa

Gold medallist Simone Biles (C) from the US poses for a photograph with her medal after the Floor Exercise final during the 2018 FIG Artistic Gymnastics Championships at the Aspire Dome on November 3, 2018 in Doha. PHOTO/AFP