It is better to have a golden heart than to have a gold medal. This was a true show of sportsmanship.
Over the weekend, Kenyan long-distance runner Simon Cheprot lost the Okpekpe International 10km Road Race in Nigeria to rescue a collapsed rival.
Cheprot was about to cross the finishing line when he noticed his opponent and countryman Kenneth Kipkemoi collapsing.
He immediately stopped, lifted him up and dragged him to the finish line before summoning medics.
He may have lost the race but Cheprot has won the hearts of many across the world, mostly the organisers of the competition who hailed him as a selfless athlete and a true definition of sportsmanship.
"Cheprot was men's title winner in 2016 and was first runner up in the 2018 edition, his ambition being to become first participant to scoop two titles since its inception in 2013."Simon may not have fulfilled his ambition of becoming the first athlete to win two Okpekpe titles since 2013 when we began this race but he came to Okpekpe this year, ran and left as the hero. He did not win any medals but he won hearts," noted Mike Itemuagbor, the event promoter
He also received an award of $10,000 from local politician in the State of Edo with Deputy Governor Philip Shaibu of Edo State contributing KSh 500,000.
This athlete Simon Cheprot forfeited his win at Okpekpe Int'l 10KM Road Race in Nigeria on Sunday to help his friend & track rival Kenneth Kipkemoi who collapsed a few metres from the finish line! Race organizers & IAAF rep awarded him with Sh1 million each for his #ActOfKindness pic.twitter.com/m00Rv4ZUUt
- Komen S.K (@skkomen) May 28, 2019