Athlete Profile

Elkanah Onkware Angwenyi

  • COUNTRY Kenya Kenya
  • DATE OF BIRTH 5 FEB 1983
  • COUNTRY Kenya Kenya
  • DATE OF BIRTH 5 FEB 1983


Focus on Athletes biographies are produced by the IAAF Communications Dept, and not by the IAAF Statistics and Documentation Division. If you have any enquiries concerning the information, please use the Contact IAAF page, selecting ‘Focus on Athletes Biographies’ in the drop down menu of contact area options.


(Date: 11 March 2006)

Elkanah Onkware ANGWENYI (ahng-WEH-nyee), Kenya (1500m)

Born: 5 February 1983, Kisii District, Nyanza Province, Kenya.

Eighth of eight children (only son) of peasant farmers.  1.78m / 61 kg

Manager: Hussein Makke

Married, son born 2003. Constable in Kenya Police.

Began running in primary school, both in school competitions and, as is common in Kenya, as a way to get to school on time. Finished high school in Kisii and was recruited into the police in 2001.

First appeared on international radar when he finished 8th in the 4 km race at Kenya’s National Cross Country Championships in 2003, thus missing selection for the Lausanne World Cross by two places. His 8th place was enough to attract the attention of manager Makke, however, and he brought Angwenyi to his American base in Philadelphia in January 2004. Almost immediately, the new recruit entered and won a race—the mile at the indoor New Balance Games in New York (4:02.73i).

The remainder of 2004 saw a couple of successful races in Oregon in June—2nd in the 3000m (7:43.28) at the adidas meet in Portland and 3rd in the featured mile (3:54.52) at the Prefontaine GP in Eugene.

2005 was a much busier year, with half a dozen races in North America, including a 3:54.23 indoor mile at the Boston Indoor Games (3rd behind countrymen Laban Rotich and Bernard Lagat, and 3rd on the 2005 indoor world list) and a 3:53.05 for 4th at the Prefontaine GP. He then traveled to Europe for five more races, all 1500m, culminating in a 7th place at the Brussels Golden League in a PB 3:33.43.

So far in 2006 he has had a busy indoor season and has won every final he has finished—miles in New York (3:57.47i) and Boston (3:55.95i), beating, among others, Rotich, Adam Goucher and Kevin Sullivan, and a 1000m in Stockholm (2:22.22i PB). The night after the Stockholm race he was due to run the celebrated Wanamaker Mile in New York’s Millrose Games as a pacemaker for the much ballyhooed duel between Lagat and Kenenisa Bekele, who was attempting the distance for the first time. The year before Angwenyi had paced Lagat to a meet record, and the meet organizer and Lagat’s manager were hoping for a repeat performance. But they were very anxious about the young Kenyan’s arriving on time and in shape to do the job so soon after his Stockholm race. Angwenyi, however, appeared on schedule and ran exactly as ordered, which turned out to be too fast for Kenenisa, who fell off the rapid pace by halfway, leaving Lagat alone in front.

Qualifying comfortably in the first round in Moscow, Angwenyi looks to be one of the likeliest dark horses hoping to upset Kenya’s Daniel Kipchirchir Komen, who enters with by far the strongest credentials in the 1500m field. Komen, however, has shown tactical weakness in big meets, and if he falters again, new kid Angwenyi may be the man best able to take advantage.

Yearly progression (1500m/mile):  2004 -  3:38.66+/3:54.52;  2005 – 3:33.43 / 3:53.05.  Indoors (mile only):  2004 – 4:02.73i;  2005 – 3:54.23i;  2006 – 3:55.95i.


Prepared by John Manners for the IAAF Focus on Athletes project. © IAAF 2006.

Personal Best - Outdoor
Performance Wind Place Date
800 Metres 1:46.3 Kakamega 19 MAR 2005
1000 Metres 2:15.09 Villeneuve-d'Ascq 09 JUN 2006
1500 Metres 3:31.97 Roma (Stadio Olimpico) 14 JUL 2006
One Mile 3:53.05 Eugene, OR 04 JUN 2005
3000 Metres 7:43.28 Gresham, OR 05 JUN 2004
Personal Best - Indoor
Performance Wind Place Date
1000 Metres 2:22.22 Stockholm 02 FEB 2006
1500 Metres 3:41.63 Moskva (Olimpiyskiy Stadion) 10 MAR 2006
One Mile 3:54.23 Boston (Roxbury), MA 29 JAN 2005
Progression - Outdoor showShow All Graphs
800 Metres Show Graphshow
Performance Place Date
2005 1:46.3 Kakamega 19 MAR
1000 Metres Show Graphshow
Performance Place Date
2006 2:15.09 Villeneuve-d'Ascq 09 JUN
2005 2:17.13 New York, NY 11 JUN
1500 Metres Show Graphshow
Performance Place Date
2007 3:37.23 Bruxelles 14 SEP
2006 3:31.97 Roma (Stadio Olimpico) 14 JUL
2005 3:33.43 Bruxelles 26 AUG
2004 3:38.66 Eugene, OR 19 JUN
One Mile Show Graphshow
Performance Place Date
2006 3:53.95 Eugene, OR 28 MAY
2005 3:53.05 Eugene, OR 04 JUN
2004 3:54.52 Eugene, OR 19 JUN
3000 Metres Show Graphshow
Performance Place Date
2004 7:43.28 Gresham, OR 05 JUN
Progression - Indoor showShow All Graphs
1000 Metres Show Graphshow
Performance Place Date
2006 2:22.22 Stockholm 02 FEB
1500 Metres Show Graphshow
Performance Place Date
2006 3:41.63 Moskva (Olimpiyskiy Stadion) 10 MAR
One Mile Show Graphshow
Performance Place Date
2006 3:55.95 Boston (Roxbury), MA 28 JAN
2005 3:54.23 Boston (Roxbury), MA 29 JAN
Honours - 1500 Metres
Rank Mark Wind Place Date
4th IAAF World Athletics Final 8 3:34.37 Stuttgart 10 SEP 2006
11th IAAF World Indoor Championships 3 3:42.98 Moskva (Olimpiyskiy Stadion) 11 MAR 2006


Focus on Athletes biographies are produced by the IAAF Communications Dept, and not by the IAAF Statistics and Documentation Division. If you have any enquiries concerning the information, please use the Contact IAAF page, selecting ‘Focus on Athletes Biographies’ in the drop down menu of contact area options.


(Date: 11 March 2006)

Elkanah Onkware ANGWENYI (ahng-WEH-nyee), Kenya (1500m)

Born: 5 February 1983, Kisii District, Nyanza Province, Kenya.

Eighth of eight children (only son) of peasant farmers.  1.78m / 61 kg

Manager: Hussein Makke

Married, son born 2003. Constable in Kenya Police.

Began running in primary school, both in school competitions and, as is common in Kenya, as a way to get to school on time. Finished high school in Kisii and was recruited into the police in 2001.

First appeared on international radar when he finished 8th in the 4 km race at Kenya’s National Cross Country Championships in 2003, thus missing selection for the Lausanne World Cross by two places. His 8th place was enough to attract the attention of manager Makke, however, and he brought Angwenyi to his American base in Philadelphia in January 2004. Almost immediately, the new recruit entered and won a race—the mile at the indoor New Balance Games in New York (4:02.73i).

The remainder of 2004 saw a couple of successful races in Oregon in June—2nd in the 3000m (7:43.28) at the adidas meet in Portland and 3rd in the featured mile (3:54.52) at the Prefontaine GP in Eugene.

2005 was a much busier year, with half a dozen races in North America, including a 3:54.23 indoor mile at the Boston Indoor Games (3rd behind countrymen Laban Rotich and Bernard Lagat, and 3rd on the 2005 indoor world list) and a 3:53.05 for 4th at the Prefontaine GP. He then traveled to Europe for five more races, all 1500m, culminating in a 7th place at the Brussels Golden League in a PB 3:33.43.

So far in 2006 he has had a busy indoor season and has won every final he has finished—miles in New York (3:57.47i) and Boston (3:55.95i), beating, among others, Rotich, Adam Goucher and Kevin Sullivan, and a 1000m in Stockholm (2:22.22i PB). The night after the Stockholm race he was due to run the celebrated Wanamaker Mile in New York’s Millrose Games as a pacemaker for the much ballyhooed duel between Lagat and Kenenisa Bekele, who was attempting the distance for the first time. The year before Angwenyi had paced Lagat to a meet record, and the meet organizer and Lagat’s manager were hoping for a repeat performance. But they were very anxious about the young Kenyan’s arriving on time and in shape to do the job so soon after his Stockholm race. Angwenyi, however, appeared on schedule and ran exactly as ordered, which turned out to be too fast for Kenenisa, who fell off the rapid pace by halfway, leaving Lagat alone in front.

Qualifying comfortably in the first round in Moscow, Angwenyi looks to be one of the likeliest dark horses hoping to upset Kenya’s Daniel Kipchirchir Komen, who enters with by far the strongest credentials in the 1500m field. Komen, however, has shown tactical weakness in big meets, and if he falters again, new kid Angwenyi may be the man best able to take advantage.

Yearly progression (1500m/mile):  2004 -  3:38.66+/3:54.52;  2005 – 3:33.43 / 3:53.05.  Indoors (mile only):  2004 – 4:02.73i;  2005 – 3:54.23i;  2006 – 3:55.95i.


Prepared by John Manners for the IAAF Focus on Athletes project. © IAAF 2006.