Rhode Island High Schooler Darius Kipyego Runs U.S. #3 800 (1:48.82)

Kipyego, a rising junior at St. Raphael Academy in Pawtucket, earned Pan Am U20 silver last year by running 1:49.46.

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By Sam Klein
July 28, 2020

Kipyego (second from right, in white) ran 1:48.82 on Monday. (Sam Klein photo)

WEST HARTFORD, Conn. —  Rising high school senior Darius Kipyego ran a personal best of 1:48.82 for 800 meters at an open meet in West Hartford on Monday, the third-fastest high school time of 2020. Kipyego finished sixth in the event at the third meet in the Track is Back series, hosted by Hartbeat Track Club at a local high school. HOKA NJ*NY Track Club’s Colby Alexander won the race in 1:47.50. Elle Purrier won the women’s 800 (which featured a male pacer) in a personal best of 2:00.70.

Kipyego, who attends St. Raphael Academy in Pawtucket, also broke the Rhode Island state record. He already owns the #2 all-time mark for U.S. sophomores (1:49.46, which he ran to take silver at the Pan American U20 Championships in Costa Rica last summer) at the finished fourth at New Balance Indoor Nationals as a sophomore in March 2019. This year’s nationals, along with the outdoor track season, was canceled due to the coronavirus pandemic.

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Race conditions on Monday were hot, in the high 80s. Kipyego started in an outside lane and settled into the back of the pack, splitting around 55-flat through 400. The finish was crowded, with all six runners within a second and a half of each other.

The all-time high school 800 record is 1:46.45, set by Michael Granville in 1996.