Jaouad Gharib of Morocco celebrates winning the men's marathon (Getty Images)
Jaouad Gharib of Morocco celebrates winning the men's marathon (Getty Images)
  • COUNTRY Morocco Morocco
  • DATE OF BIRTH 22 MAY 1972


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.


Jaouad Gharib, Morocco (Marathon)

Born May 22, 1972

World Champion in the marathon, in 2003, in Paris

On 30 August 2003, 43 years after his countryman Abdeslam Radi won silver in the Rome Olympic Marathon, Jaouad Gharib ensured that his name went down in the history books, both in Morocco and worldwide, by producing one of the finest performances of the 9th IAAF World Championships in Paris. He won the gold, but also set a Championships record of 2:08.31, in only his second Marathon..

No big expectations surrounded Gharib’s arrival in Paris, but when he left with his gold medal, he had written a new glorious chapter in Morocco’s athletic history.

Gharib, who had finished 10th over 10,000m in the IAAF World Championships in Edmonton, in 2001, and runner-up in the IAAF World Half Marathon Championships in Brussels in 2002, is an athlete who allies endurance, stamina and speed.

Gharib was a late bloomer who only started running at the age of 22. He took his time in blossoming into a world class athlete. A live retransmission of the 1992 edition of the Marrakech Marathon on Moroccan television was the first contact that this young Berber orphan from Khenifra, a town in the Middle Atlas, had with athletics.

“My love for the sport was triggered one day in January 1992 as I watched the live retransmission of the Marrakech Marathon. It was wonderful and I asked myself why I also could not run like these people and one day win this Marathon which is renowned internationally? This was the starting point of my life as an athlete”.

He got to work the very next day. Armed with trainers, shorts and a tee-shirt he started off training, first by himself and then with a local club. Up until then, he was like all youngsters and loved football.

His beginning in athletics was rather late, considering that most star athletes such as Hicham El Guerrouj have already conquered one or more world titles by the age of 22.

Gharib won his first honours with the “Garde Royale”, before switching to road races. He entered competitions all over Morocco and won all of them. His great potential meant he was selected by the National Federation to train with the top Moroccan athletes at the famous “Institut National d’Athlétisme” and to be coached by the former 10,000m Olympic Champion, Brahim Boutayeb. He is surrounded by all the great Moroccan athletes including Habassa, Bedday, Goumri and Salah Hissou.

It took all Aziz Daouda’s and Brahim Boutayeb’s force of persuasion and experience to get Gharib to concentrate solely on half marathons and marathons. Indeed, they are convinced that Gharib, thanks to his phenomenal assets and qualities, is now a favourite for the Olympic Gold medal and can go down in history as one of the greatest Marathon runners ever.

Gharib himself has been quoted as saying: “The Olympic title is my absolute priority. Should I achieve my goal, I will offer the precious medal posthumously to Radi Benabdessalam, who gave Morocco its first Olympic medal in Rome in 1960.

Jaouad GHARIB

Born May 22, 1972
World Champion in the marathon, in 2003, in Paris
Runner-up in the IAAF World Half Marathon Championships, in 2002, in Brussels
10th in the 10,000m at the IAAF World Championships, in 2001, in Edmonton
Gold Medalist in the 10,000m at the 13th Mediterranean Games, in 2001, in Tunis
8th in the 10,000m in the African Championships, in 2002, in Tunis
12th in the 3000m at the IAAF World Indoor Championships in 2003, in Birmingham
9th at the IAAF World Half Marathon Championships in 2002, in Bristol
6th in the Rotterdam Marathon, in 2003
1st in the Johannesburg Half Marathon, in 2003
3rd in the London Marathon, in 2004
Bronze Team Medalist in the Long Race in the IAAF World Cross Country Championships, in Dublin, in 2002 (9th in the individual race)
Bronze Team Medalist in the Long Race in the IAAF World Cross Country Championships, in Lausanne, in 2003 (23rd in the individual race)

Personal Best - Outdoor
Performance Wind Place Date
3000 Metres 7:39.22 Nice 09 JUL 2001
5000 Metres 13:19.69 Oslo 13 JUL 2001
10,000 Metres 27:29.51 Praha (Stadion Rošický) 18 JUN 2001
15 Kilometres 42:05 Lisboa 21 MAR 2010
20 Kilometres 57:03 Lisboa 21 MAR 2010
Half Marathon 59:59 Lisboa 22 MAR 2009
25 Kilometres 1:13:58 Beijing (National Stadium) 24 AUG 2008
30 Kilometres 1:28:36 London 26 APR 2009
Marathon 2:05:27 London 26 APR 2009
Personal Best - Indoor
Performance Wind Place Date
3000 Metres 7:51.59 Birmingham (NIA), GBR 14 MAR 2003
Two Miles 8:29.23 Birmingham 17 FEB 2002
10,000 Metres 28:02.09 Gent 10 FEB 2002
Progression - Outdoor showShow All Graphs
3000 Metres Show Graphshow
Performance Place Date
2001 7:39.22 Nice 09 JUL
5000 Metres Show Graphshow
Performance Place Date
2002 13:20.59 Lisboa 15 JUN
2001 13:19.69 Oslo 13 JUL
10,000 Metres Show Graphshow
Performance Place Date
2002 28:57.12 Radés 07 AUG
2001 27:29.51 Praha (Stadion Rošický) 18 JUN
15 Kilometres Show Graphshow
Performance Place Date
2010 42:05 Lisboa 21 MAR
2002 43:19 Bruxelles 05 MAY
20 Kilometres Show Graphshow
Performance Place Date
2010 57:03 Lisboa 21 MAR
Half Marathon Show Graphshow
Performance Place Date
2010 1:00:33 Lisboa 21 MAR
2009 59:59 Lisboa 22 MAR
2008 1:02:19 Lisboa 28 SEP
2007 1:02:05 Lisboa 16 SEP
2005 1:04:14 Lisboa 25 SEP
2003 1:01:18 Safi 20 APR
2002 1:00:42 Bruxelles 05 MAY
2001 1:01:36 Safi 29 APR
25 Kilometres Show Graphshow
Performance Place Date
2010 1:14:48 Fukuoka 05 DEC
2008 1:13:58 Beijing (National Stadium) 24 AUG
30 Kilometres Show Graphshow
Performance Place Date
2012 1:30:02 London 22 APR
2011 1:29:22 London 17 APR
2010 1:29:01 London 25 APR
2009 1:28:36 London 26 APR
2008 1:29:18 Beijing (National Stadium) 24 AUG
Marathon Show Graphshow
Performance Place Date
2013 2:10:11 Warszawa 21 APR
2012 2:07:44 London 22 APR
2011 2:08:26 New York City, NY 06 NOV
2011 2:08:26 London 17 APR
2010 2:06:55 London 25 APR
2009 2:05:27 London 26 APR
2008 2:07:16 Beijing (National Stadium) 24 AUG
2007 2:07:54 London 22 APR
2006 2:07:19 Fukuoka 03 DEC
2005 2:07:49 London 17 APR
2004 2:07:02 London 18 APR
2003 2:08:31 Paris Saint-Denis (Stade de France) 30 AUG
Progression - Indoor showShow All Graphs
3000 Metres Show Graphshow
Performance Place Date
2003 7:51.59 Birmingham (NIA), GBR 14 MAR
2002 7:51.7 Birmingham, GBR 17 FEB
Two Miles Show Graphshow
Performance Place Date
2002 8:29.23 Birmingham 17 FEB
10,000 Metres Show Graphshow
Performance Place Date
2002 28:02.09 Gent 10 FEB
Honours - 3000 Metres
Rank Mark Wind Place Date
9th IAAF World Indoor Championships 12 8:01.01 Birmingham (NIA), GBR 16 MAR 2003
Honours - 10,000 Metres
Rank Mark Wind Place Date
8th IAAF World Championships 11 28:05.45 Edmonton 08 AUG 2001
Honours - Half Marathon
Rank Mark Wind Place Date
11th IAAF World Half Marathon Championships 2 1:00:42 Bruxelles 05 MAY 2002
10th IAAF World Half Marathon Championships 9 1:01:41 Bristol 07 OCT 2001
Honours - Marathon
Rank Mark Wind Place Date
12th IAAF World Championships in Athletics f DNS Berlin (Olympiastadion) 22 AUG 2009
The XXIX Olympic Games 2 2:07:16 Beijing (National Stadium) 24 AUG 2008
10th IAAF World Championships in Athletics 1 2:10:10 Helsinki 13 AUG 2005
28th Olympic Games 11 2:15:12 Athína (Olympic Stadium) 29 AUG 2004
9th IAAF World Championships in Athletics 1 2:08:31 Paris Saint-Denis (Stade de France) 30 AUG 2003
Honours - Long Race
Rank Mark Wind Place Date
31st IAAF World Cross Country Championships 23 38:06 Lausanne 30 MAR 2003
30th IAAF/Sport Ireland World Cross Country Championships 10 35:57 Dublin 24 MAR 2002


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.


Jaouad Gharib, Morocco (Marathon)

Born May 22, 1972

World Champion in the marathon, in 2003, in Paris

On 30 August 2003, 43 years after his countryman Abdeslam Radi won silver in the Rome Olympic Marathon, Jaouad Gharib ensured that his name went down in the history books, both in Morocco and worldwide, by producing one of the finest performances of the 9th IAAF World Championships in Paris. He won the gold, but also set a Championships record of 2:08.31, in only his second Marathon..

No big expectations surrounded Gharib’s arrival in Paris, but when he left with his gold medal, he had written a new glorious chapter in Morocco’s athletic history.

Gharib, who had finished 10th over 10,000m in the IAAF World Championships in Edmonton, in 2001, and runner-up in the IAAF World Half Marathon Championships in Brussels in 2002, is an athlete who allies endurance, stamina and speed.

Gharib was a late bloomer who only started running at the age of 22. He took his time in blossoming into a world class athlete. A live retransmission of the 1992 edition of the Marrakech Marathon on Moroccan television was the first contact that this young Berber orphan from Khenifra, a town in the Middle Atlas, had with athletics.

“My love for the sport was triggered one day in January 1992 as I watched the live retransmission of the Marrakech Marathon. It was wonderful and I asked myself why I also could not run like these people and one day win this Marathon which is renowned internationally? This was the starting point of my life as an athlete”.

He got to work the very next day. Armed with trainers, shorts and a tee-shirt he started off training, first by himself and then with a local club. Up until then, he was like all youngsters and loved football.

His beginning in athletics was rather late, considering that most star athletes such as Hicham El Guerrouj have already conquered one or more world titles by the age of 22.

Gharib won his first honours with the “Garde Royale”, before switching to road races. He entered competitions all over Morocco and won all of them. His great potential meant he was selected by the National Federation to train with the top Moroccan athletes at the famous “Institut National d’Athlétisme” and to be coached by the former 10,000m Olympic Champion, Brahim Boutayeb. He is surrounded by all the great Moroccan athletes including Habassa, Bedday, Goumri and Salah Hissou.

It took all Aziz Daouda’s and Brahim Boutayeb’s force of persuasion and experience to get Gharib to concentrate solely on half marathons and marathons. Indeed, they are convinced that Gharib, thanks to his phenomenal assets and qualities, is now a favourite for the Olympic Gold medal and can go down in history as one of the greatest Marathon runners ever.

Gharib himself has been quoted as saying: “The Olympic title is my absolute priority. Should I achieve my goal, I will offer the precious medal posthumously to Radi Benabdessalam, who gave Morocco its first Olympic medal in Rome in 1960.

Jaouad GHARIB

Born May 22, 1972
World Champion in the marathon, in 2003, in Paris
Runner-up in the IAAF World Half Marathon Championships, in 2002, in Brussels
10th in the 10,000m at the IAAF World Championships, in 2001, in Edmonton
Gold Medalist in the 10,000m at the 13th Mediterranean Games, in 2001, in Tunis
8th in the 10,000m in the African Championships, in 2002, in Tunis
12th in the 3000m at the IAAF World Indoor Championships in 2003, in Birmingham
9th at the IAAF World Half Marathon Championships in 2002, in Bristol
6th in the Rotterdam Marathon, in 2003
1st in the Johannesburg Half Marathon, in 2003
3rd in the London Marathon, in 2004
Bronze Team Medalist in the Long Race in the IAAF World Cross Country Championships, in Dublin, in 2002 (9th in the individual race)
Bronze Team Medalist in the Long Race in the IAAF World Cross Country Championships, in Lausanne, in 2003 (23rd in the individual race)