| Event type

5,000 metres, Men

Date3 – 6 August 2021
LocationJapan National Stadium, Kasumigaoka, Shinjuku, Tokyo
Participants38 from 23 countries

Predicting this event was almost impossible as nobody was certain who would run in the 5,000. Some of the top 5,000 metre runners were considering competing in the 1,500, the steeplechase, and the 10,000, so nobody knew what the final field would look like. Uganda’s Joshua Cheptegei was the world record holder but he was also considering the 10,000, in which he had won the 2019 World Championship. Norway’s Jakob Ingebrigtsen would eventually only run the 1,500. One favorite, Ethiopian Getnet Wale, had finished fourth in the steeplechase and would not get out of the 5K heats. Forecasting the event was futile.

In the final Cheptegei controlled the race throughout, taking the early lead, and then leading for several laps with teammate Jacob Kiplimo. Kiplimo led through 2,300 metres before Cheptegei went to the lead, although he allowed Kenyan Nicholas Kipkorir Kimeli to lead briefly.

Cheptegei went back to the front at 4,000 metres and held the lead to the finish, winning the gold medal. He was pushed by Kimeli on the backstretch of the final lap, but then left him easily. Kimeli was challenged by American Paul Chelimo, but they were passed on the final straight by Canada’s Mohammed Ahmed, who had run for the University of Wisconsin in the USA, and would win the silver medal. Chelimo, the 2016 Rio silver medalist, dove at the line to finish ahead of Kimeli and win his second consecutive medal in the event.

Cheptegei became only the fifth world record holder in the 5K to also win an Olympic gold medal in the event, joining Hannes Kolehmainen (1912), Paavo Nurmi (1924), Lauri Lehtinen (1932), and Kenenisa Bekele (2008).

1Joshua CheptegeiUGAGold
2Mohammed AhmedCANSilver
3Paul ChelimoUSABronze
4Nicholas Kipkorir KimeliKEN
5Jacob KiplimoUGA
6Birhanu BalewBRN
7Justyn KnightCAN
8Mohamed KatirESP
9Grant FisherUSA
10Tolosa Milkesa MengeshaETH
11Andy ButchartGBR
12Luis GrijalvaGUA
13Jimmy GressierFRA
14William KincaidUSA
15Dawit FikaduBRN
16Oscar ChelimoUGA
6 h1 r1/2Marc ScottGBR
7 h1 r1/2Hugo HayFRA
8 h1 r1/2David McNeillAUS
9 h1 r1/2Getnet WaleETH
10 h1 r1/2Daniel Simiu EbenyoKEN
11 h1 r1/2Jonas RaessSUI
11 h2 r1/2Morgan McDonaldAUS
12 h1 r1/2Soufiyan BouqantarMAR
12 h2 r1/2Narve Gilje NordåsNOR
13 h1 r1/2Luc BruchetCAN
13 h2 r1/2Jamal Abdelmaji Eisa MohammedEOR
14 h1 r1/2Nibret MelakETH
15 h1 r1/2Yemaneberhan CrippaITA
15 h2 r1/2Lesiba MasheleRSA
16 h1 r1/2Robin HendrixBEL
16 h2 r1/2Mohamed MohumedGER
17 h1 r1/2Yuta BandoJPN
17 h2 r1/2Isaac KimeliBEL
18 h1 r1/2Nursultan KeneshbekovKGZ
18 h2 r1/2Hiroki MatsuedaJPN
19 h1 r1/2Abidine AbidineMTN
AC h1 r1/2Mike FoppenNED
DNSSamwel MasaiKEN
DNSPatrick TiernanAUS