Kenyan-born Bernard Lagat is a veteran Olympian competing in his Olympics in distance running. London will be his third as an American citizen on Team USA. He’s competed in both the 1500 and 5000 meter distances. He’s got bronze and silver Olympic medals and recently claimed American records in the 5000 meter distance. He’s competing in the 5K race in London with a preliminary heat on Wednesday.
NBC describes his path to the Olympics:
Growing up on a family farm in Kapsabet, Kenya, Lagat ran a mile and a half to school each day, then home for lunch, back to school, and home again at dismissal. For all that, he was little more than a mediocre runner by his mid-teens. As his faster peers turned pro, Lagat entered Jomo Kenyatta University near Nairobi in 1996. After a coach there spotted Lagat's talent and contacted several American schools, Washington State took a chance. Within a year, Lagat was winning Pac-10 meets en route to a title-filled NCAA career.