Last week, a video emerged online showing a high school student running to school alongside athletes in Uasin Gishu county.
The clip sparked mixed reactions from internet users, with some netizens complaining that a leaner shouldn’t have to run to school. Others saw the athletic potential in the form three student at RCEA Kiplombe Secondary School.
As it turns out, the student identified as Dennis Cheruiyot is an aspiring athlete with dreams of emulating Kenya’s superstar marathoner Eliud Kipchoge.
Cheruiyot said he joins professional athletes every morning due to his passion for athletics.
“I have been running alongside the athletes almost every day. At times I am usually the pacemaker because I am pretty fast. It takes me approximately 10-15mins to get to school which is about 4km away,” he said.
Cheruiyot, who is the games captain in his school, has also been tapped by Brazilian athletics coach Neto Goncalves who promised to nurture his talent after his studies.
“Today I had the opportunity to personally meet the boy Dennis Cheruiyot and learn a little about his life. Dennis is a 3rd-year student at Kiplombe Secondary School and last week I made a video of him running to school, taking “a ride” with the marathon runners in training,” the coach said on Tuesday.
He added: “Dennis told me that he loves the sport, especially Athletics and dreams of being a champion, and will dedicate himself a lot to it. He also said that today was the first time he ran on an Athletics track. I knew I would have many great experiences and learnings in Kenya, and with this boy, I learned a lot more about determination, dreams, and the will to win. I thank God for allowing me to have these moments. 🙏 Dennis, may your life be very successful, may God bless you. Thanks for the example to all of us.”
Cheruiyo, the sixth-born in a family of eight, said he is currently focussing on his education.
“For now I want to focus on my studies. Afterward, I will join a training camp in Iten and hone my skills further. I have always been passionate about athletics and I think I am built for middle to long-distance races,” he said.
Adding: “My dream is to get to levels reached by Eliud Kipchoge. I look up to him and his work ethic motivates me.”
Cheruiyot, 20, also noted that he is struggling to make ends meet as he lives alone and survives on menial jobs.
“I appeal to any well-wishers out there to assist me in any way possible so that I can complete my studies.
“That is the most important thing for now,” he said.
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