- BERNARD & VIOLAH LAGAT
Born into a family of accomplished runners, Bernard and Violah will hope to continue the family’s running tradition at the Rio Games. However, as the youngest of 10 siblings, Violah certainly has big shoes to fill if she is aims to be anything like her older brother Bernard, who has enjoyed an Athletics career spanning over two decades.
While the Rio Olympics is going to be the first for Violah, it will be the fifth outing for ‘Big Brother’ Bernard who competed for Kenya in Sydney 2000 and Athens 2004, before switching allegiances to the US in 2005. As such, the siblings would be competing for two different countries.
While 27-year old Violah dons the black and red colours of Kenya, Bernard would be making his third outing at the Olympics for the US. Viola will compete in the 1500m, the same event that brought Bernard fame, with the 41-year old winning Olympic Bronze and Silver medals respectively in Sydney and Athens.
He also became the first athlete to become World Champion in both the 1500m and 5000m at the same IAAF World Outdoor Championships, a feat he achieved in Osaka 2007. He has since won several other titles and medals over the 1500m, 3000m and 5000m.
Bernard, on the other hand, will compete in the 5000m. He holds the American Indoor and outdoor records in the 1500m amongst others and won the 5000m at the 2016 US Trials held last month. He will also become the oldest runner at the Olympics to represent the United States.