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41-year-old Bernard Lagat runs final track race of illustrious career

American Bernard Lagat, 41, ran the final track race of his illustrious career on Saturday shortly after competing in his fifth Olympics.

Bernard Lagat

One of the greatest middle-distance runners in history has called it a career in terms of racing on the track.

Kenyan-born American Bernard Lagat raced his final track race on Saturday in Berlin at a high-performance meet. The cap-off to his lengthy career comes just weeks after he represented the United States at his fifth Olympic Games.

“That last race was magical,” Lagat tweeted out on Saturday. “Thank you, ISTAF 2016 Berlin. And, now, let the party begin.”


Though Lagat has called it a career on the track, he is expected to continue to race on the roads. The Washington State University graduate holds numerous masters records for athletes aged 40 and older. The decision to retire is not a surprise as Lagat said this past winter that “after the summer of 2016, I don’t plan to retire, but my track career will be over completely,” according to Sports Illustrated.

With his track spikes being tucked away for good, Lagat will look to get into road racing and possibly a marathon, though not a competitive 42.2K race.

The 41-year-old represented Kenya at the 2000 and 2004 Olympics before becoming a U.S. citizen. His Olympic accolades include a bronze in the 1,500m in 2000 and a silver in 2004. He’s the second fastest 1,500m runner of all-time (3:26.34) behind only Moroccan Hicham El Guerrouj.

From 2005 onwards, Lagat represented the United States at multiple world championships and Olympics. He’s the American record holder in the outdoor 1,500m, 3,000m and 5,000m. He won a pair of gold medals representing the U.S. at the 2007 world championships and added two silver and one bronze at the two subsequent world championships.

One of Lagat’s most famous runs: The 1,500m at the 2004 Olympics

This past July, Lagat ran an incredible 5,000m at the U.S. Olympic Trials to qualify for Rio running 52 seconds for the final 400m. He was temporarily awarded the bronze medal at the 2016 Olympics after three athletes were initially disqualified. However, two of the three athletes, including Canadian Mo Ahmed, were reinstated bumping Lagat back to fifth.

RELATED: VIDEO: Men’s 5,000m silver medallist informed of DQ on live TV, gets reinstated.

Lagat finished second in the men’s 3,000m at the ISTAF Berlin on Sunday in 7:43.63 to conclude one of the most illustrious track careers in middle-distance history.