Popularly known as the greatest athlete in modern African history, Haile Gebrselassie is a retired Ethiopian long-distance athlete, born on the 18th of April 1973 in Asella, Oromia Region, Ethiopia.
Gebrselassie first gained international attention in 1992 when he won the 5000 metre race at the 1992 Junior World Championships in Seoul and he never looked back after that. He boasts two Olympic Gold medals at the 10,000m distance and set a record by winning the Berlin Marathon four times in a row.
To mention but a few of his long list of achievements, this African global icon has;
- Won the Dubai Marathon three times and also the 2001 Half Marathon.
- Broke 61 Ethiopian records in the course of his career in distances from the 800m running to the marathon
As if that was not enough this phenomenal athlete of all times has also set 27 World Records by winning;
Two Olympic gold medals over 10,000 metres
- Numerous races from 1500m to the marathon
- A bronze medal at the World Cross Country Championships
- Four consecutive Berlin Marathon wins
- Had three straight wins at the Dubai Marathon
- Four indoor world titles
- In September 2008, at the age of 35, he won the Berlin Marathon with a world record time of 2:03:59, breaking his own world record by 27 seconds.
Definitely one of the greatest long distance runners in history, Gebrselassie’s world record time of 2:03:59 stood for three years. Since he was over the age of 35, it still stands as the Masters Age group world record.
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