It Was a Dream Feat at RAK for Chemutai, Now Eyeing Valencia

By Gilbert Koech

After beating a ridiculously talented field in RAK Half Marathon in early February , Fancy Chemutai is not resting as she is eyeing to win the World Half event set for Valencia, Spain come March 24.

She might have missed etching her name in Marathon history books when she scared the World Record with only two seconds, but the 23 year old is glad to have cracked the top four in the all-time list performers.

The second child in a family of five and born to a single mum Regina Chepkemoi, now wants to to reaffirm her mettle when she clashes with top cream in the Spanish capital. She is keen on wrestling the crown from her compatriot and former World Record holder Peris Jepchirchir (1:07.31).

“Yea. No doubt the RAK showdown was a cracker and glad I did it. Though missing on WR, I am happy with overall performance. For now, preps are on for World Half which I am targeting the top prize” Chemutai told Run Kenya

The humble girl from Chepseon, Kericho County had more to celebrate as she had surpassed legendary Paula Radcliffe’s record with a 43-seconds best in 10miles (26km split of 49:11). Radcliffe’s old record had been chopped off at 50:01.

Again, the alumni of Chepseon Complex High School had managed to “slay” the Marathon titans that included Mary Keittany, Joyciline Jepkosgei and Caroline Kipkurui in Arabs Emirates showpiece.

Despite Chemutai, currently managed by Volare Sports Management missing a ($100,000) bonus, she has the whole of tomorrow to achieve it, when she returns to Emirates.


And talking of cash money, the girl bred out of a humble background, a typical African rural setting, is having sky as her limit. At least to help her mother who has been struggling to bring them up with her siblings. She had been encouraging her mum not give up as she was going to hit the windfall one day.

Speaking at her homecoming party in Saptet Gardens, her mother revealed how Chemutai would encourage her that she will one day help her as the bread winner, from athletics.

“Yes. After completing school, which was not easy for me, Chemutai would come to me and reveal her plans to make it in running. Things were tough. I never believed it. But I thank Jehovah for this,” Her mother Chepkemoi said.

And while Chemutai was still flirting with athletics, she got a job at Mellon Hotel in same hood, of Chepseon. She has to take something home.

At Mellon Chemutai would during part time, sneak and follow her athletics friends for training, in the morning and evening.

“It was tough. Had to get a job to get money to buy even the basics. My mum is been struggling to raise the five us is lot’s of struggle. After getting job at Mellon, I would sneak out and join my friends training for athletics,” Chemutai summed.

Life was not that rosy and the pay at Mellon was not enough. She joined Keromatt Limited distributing Cards for 5 months. It was still not paying well yet she had to trek for 10km to job to save that important coin.

“After Mellon i joined Kerromart. I was selling cards. But not long I left it because the pay was too small for my needs,” Chemutai added.

After Kerromart, she get back home, then staying with a friend at Kericho’s Duka Moja estate. She would regularly join her friends for training around tea estates with hopes to excelling here.

Then two months later, Kericho Safaricom Series 10km race came. She registered and tried the event. The outcome was remarkable, coming home on 3rd position.

A month later, Chemutai, buoyed by Safaricom feat, she won the Laikipia 10km. This impressed the Volare management to sign her on their stable.

Chemutai is now glad to be training with great runners that includes Nobert Kigen, Caroline Kilel, Henry Chirchir and Geoffrey Koech in Kericho under coach J. Bii.

Her aunt Alice Ng’eny, indeed confirmed the unique aspirations from Fancy. That she had a burning desire to change things in the family from running. From a family with not running history.
"Fancy had a strong spirit to break in athletics. She would always come to me for assurance on why her training will bore fruits. I wasn’t sure, but now I have seen dream happening," Alice said.