Pamela Jelimo Biography

Pamela Jelimo was born on 5th December 1989 in Kiptamok village, Nandi county. She is a Kenyan middle -distance runner specializing in the 800 metres. She is the first woman to win an olympic gold and also the first woman to win the golden league jackpot.

Pamela Jelimo Early Life and Education

Pamela Jelimo was born in Kiptamok village, Nandi District, Rift Valley Province. Her mother, Esther Cheptoo Keter, was a promising 200 metres and 400 metres runner, but the customs of the Nandi tribe meant that as the last-born daughter she could not marry and had to care for her parents in their old age.

However, she was allowed to bear children to different men; thus, Jelimo was raised by her mother in a family of three brothers and six sisters.

Pamela Jelimo Running Career

Pamela Jelimo began running in 2003, aged 13, at Koyo Secondary in the Kaptumo division, near Kapsabet. She quickly established herself as an accomplished athlete, winning at schools’ championships in the 100 metres, 200 m, 400 m, 800 metres, 400 metres hurdles and heptathlon.Her high school games teacher Philip Ng’eno remarked that she used to compete with the boys in sprint events as the girls did not provide the competition she needed.

By 2004, Jelimo had reached the local provincial championships in the 400 m.

In June 2007 she finished fifth in the 400 metres race at the Kenyan Championships with a time of 55.82 seconds.

She kept improving throughout the season, winning the 400 metres gold medal at the African Junior Championships with a finish of 54.93 s and setting a Kenyan national junior record in the 200 m with 24.68 s.

Jelimo was pleased with her accomplishments but her new coach Zaid Kipkemboi Aziz suggested that she change to 800 m, stating that she would perform best over the longer distance. She began working for the Kenyan police force and was training with fellow Kenyan runner Janeth Jepkosgei.

Jelimo ran her first 800 metres race on 19 April 2008 at the Kenyan trials for the African championships, clocking 2:01.02 minutes Despite her budding athletics career, she continued to work at the Embu Police station as a police constable, earning KSh 11,000 a month.

Pamela Jelimo became the first Kenyan woman to Win an Olympic gold when she took the 800m in Beijing in 2008 at the age of 18 she set a record of 1:54.87.

Pamela Jelimo
Pamela Jelimo

She continued her unbeaten streak by winning the Weltklasse Golden League meeting in Zurich on August 29, 2008, improving her personal best to 1:54.01.This is the third fastest performance ever, behind Nadezhda Olizarenko and the world record of Jarmila Kratochvilova.

At the Memorial van Damme competition in Brussels, the AF Golden League final, Jelimo won the 800m with a time of 1:55.16. As the only athlete to win the same event at all six Golden League meetings, she won the competition’s jackpot of $1 million.

She crowned her unbeaten sea- son by winning her race at the 2008 IAAF World Athletics Final. After the event she returned to Kenya for the first time since the Olympic trials and was welcomed by major festivities. On September 18, 2008, in Kapsabet Town, a street was named in her honour.

Pamela Jelimo was shortlisted for the IAAF World Athlete of the Year women’s category alongside Russian Yelena Isinbayeva and Ethiopian Tirunesh Dibaba, but the award was won by Isinbayeva. Jelimo was awarded the IAAF Revelation of the Year Award and the 2008 Kenyan Sportswoman of the Year Award.

But she suffered a sudden fall of form between 2009 — 2011. As the 2012 Olympics began, Jelimo had five of the 16 fastest 800m times in women’s history all posted in 2008.

Since then she has been plagued by injuries and off the track concerns. Nevertheless, she enjoyed a comeback in 2012 as she won the World Indoor Championships and owned the two fastest 800m times of the outdoor season, topping out at 1:56.76.

Pamela Jelimo career appeared to be on the upswing, making her the 800—metre favorite for London. She’d have to contend with 2011 world champion Mariya Savinova of Russia, Ethiopia’s 20-year-o1d rising star Fantu Magiso, American Alysia Montano, plus the other two Daegu medalists, fellow Kenyan Janeth Jepkosgei, and 2011 silver medalist Caster Semenya of South Africa, who had a very quiet summer, but remained a medal threat.

Pamela Jelimo Family

Pamela Jelimo was married to Peter Kiprotich Murrey who is also an 800 metres runner but they divorced in 2012. They were blessed with three children.

Pamela Jelimo Video