Carrie chats with Olympian Viola Cheptoo Lagat, who recently took second place at the TCS New York City Marathon in her debut marathon! They cover her background in the sport, growing up in a very fast family, the motivation behind her amazing run, the pain she felt from the loss of her dear friend and fellow Kenyan runner and Olympian Agnes Tirop, and how she is helping bring awareness to gender-based violence through Tirop’s Angels.
Recorded December 3, 2021
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Viola Cheptoo Lagat
Bio courtesy NYRR
After competing in middle distances at the Olympic and World Championship level for Kenya, Violah Cheptoo will now be making her marathon debut. Earlier this year in the Big Apple, she finished in second place at the Mastercard New York Mini 10K in a time of 31:39.
Cheptoo grew up in Kenya’s Nandi District close to the town of Kapsabet and is the youngest of 10 siblings in a family of accomplished runners that includes five-time Olympian and five-time world champion Bernard Lagat. From a young age she loved playing basketball, but she came to the U.S. after graduating high school on a running scholarship at Central Arizona Junior College. After vaulting herself up the junior college rankings, she transferred to Florida State University, where she ran collegiately and pursued a double degree in sociology and nursing.