Kenya’s short distance runner Nicholas Kiplagat Bett has died in an accident on Wednesday morning.
The former 400 meters hurdles world champion died in a road accident in Lessos, Nandi County.
The athlete is said to have lost control of his vehicle which rolled along the Eldoret-Kapsabet road.
Police boss Patrick Wambani said Bett was driving home from Nairobi after returning from Nigeria where he participated in the just-concluded African Athletics Championships.
In 2015 Nicholas Bett became the first Kenyan to win a gold in hurdles during the world competition that was held in Beijing, China.
His first outing at national level was in 2010, when he was a Kenyan junior finalist. He made his breakthrough nationally at senior level with a run of 50.39 seconds to place third at the Kenyan Athletics Championships in 2011.
He missed most of the 2012 season but returned in 2013 with runner-up finishes at both the national championships and world trials.
A new best of 49.70 seconds at the latter meet placed him near the top fifty globally for the season.
Another runner-up place at national level earned selection for both the 2014 Commonwealth Games and the 2014 African Championships in Athletics. At the Commonwealth Games he failed to make the hurdles final and was also eliminated in the heats of the 4×400 metres relay after Kenya were disqualified.
A bronze medal double came at African level: he achieved a new personal best in the 400 m hurdles final to come third in a time of 49.03 seconds. A team of Mark Mutai, Solomon Buoga, Bett, and Boniface Mucheru took third in the 4×400 m relay.
Bett began to compete on the international track and field circuit in 2015 and had wins at the Savo Games and Lappeenranta Games in Finland. A personal best of 48.29 seconds at the 2015 Athletics Kenya World Championship Trials brought him selection for the national team and raised him to third on the global rankings.
His twin brother, Haron Koech, is also a 400 metres hurdler.