Wilson Kiprugut

Biographical information

RolesCompeted in Olympic Games
Full nameWilson Arap Chuma•Kiprugut
Used nameWilson•Kiprugut
Born1938 in Kericho, Kericho (KEN)
Died1 November 2022 in Kericho, Kericho (KEN)
Measurements178 cm / 71 kg
AffiliationsKenyan Army, (KEN)
NOC Kenya
Medals OG
Gold 0
Silver 1
Bronze 1
Total 2


Wilson Kiprugut got his start in track and field athletics as a schoolboy and participated in his first major tournament in 1958, when he ran in that year’s East African championship. It was here that he was spotted by scouts from the Kenyan Army and brought into military service, where he eventually rose to the rank of sergeant. His main job, however, was to train for middle-distance track events, and he made his intercontinental tournament debut at the 1962 British Empire and Commonwealth Games. There he was eliminated in the heats of the 440 yards and finished fifth in the 4x440 yards relay, alongside Kimaru Songok, Peter Francis, and Seraphino Antao).

Undeterred, his next stop was the 1964 Summer Olympics, where he became the first Kenyan to win an Olympic medal by taking bronze in the 800 metres. He was also eliminated in the quarter-finals of the 400 metres. He then attended the inaugural All-Africa Games the following year and captured the 400 and 800 metre titles, before moving on to the 1966 British Empire and Commonwealth Games, where he took silver in the 880 yards. His final major international tournament was the 1968 Summer Olympics, where he won silver in the 800 metres after being edged out of first place by Ralph Doubell of Australia.

During his career, Kiprugut held East African records in both the 800 metres and the 880 yards events. He retired from active competition in 1969 and remained with the army as a fitness instructor until 1974. He later ran a farm near his home town of Kericho.

Personal Bests: 400 – 46.6 (1965); 800 – 1:44.57 (1968).


Games Discipline (Sport) / Event NOC / Team Pos Medal As
1964 Summer Olympics Athletics KEN Wilson Kiprugut
400 metres, Men (Olympic) 7 h3 r2/4
800 metres, Men (Olympic) 3 Bronze
1968 Summer Olympics Athletics KEN Wilson Kiprugut
800 metres, Men (Olympic) 2 Silver
4 × 400 metres Relay, Men (Olympic) Kenya DNS

Special Notes