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Articles tagged #Alberto Salazar
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After more than two decades, John Capriotti is stepping down as leader of Nike’s track and field sports marketing group

“John is going into the consulting business,” said Steve Miller, a former Nike executive and the man who hired Capriotti at the company.

The fiery former track coach still worked for the sneaker giant as of Friday. But he is leaning toward a consulting deal that would make Nike one of his clients, according to a second source close to Capriotti.

News of the change had the track and field world buzzing on Friday.

“It’s kind of unbelievable,” said a third source, a prominent sports agent. “He’s been in that position for the entire 21 years I’ve been around track and field. He’s been the single most influential person in the sport.”

Neither Capriotti nor Nike could immediately be reached for comment.

Capriotti’s decision comes as Nike is cutting costs and laying off employees. The company lost about $790 million last quarter.

Since Nike brought in John Donahoe as its new CEO and chairman in January, there has been speculation about the ramifications for the company’s sports marketing arm, and for its track and field operations in particular. Donahoe’s athletic background is unknown. But outsiders speculate that the longtime technology executive does not share the passion for track and field of his predecessors Phil Knight and Mark Parker.

Under Capriotti’s watch, Nike solidified its position as the sport’s superpower. It hired more track athletes to endorsement contracts than any other sponsor. It also bankrolled USA Track & Field, the sport’s governing body in this country, signing a sponsorship in 2014 worth more than $400 million.

Nike sponsored three different teams of elite runners, all of them based in Oregon. Its audacious goal was to make American runners once again competitive with the rest of the world.

Capriotti and Nike also helped secure Eugene’s position as one of the world capitals of the sport. He was such a fixture at Hayward Field that his customary spot in the grandstands became known as Cap’s Corner.

The stunning decision to award the 2021 track and field world championships to Eugene came in part because of the enthusiastic support of Knight and Nike. The coronavirus pandemic has delayed the running of those championships in Eugene until 2022.

There was also plenty of controversy. Alberto Salazar was Nike’s superstar coach for the Nike Oregon Project. But Salazar was dogged for years by allegations that he encouraged his athletes to use banned substances. He was banned from the sport for four years “for orchestrating and facilitating prohibited doping conduct.”

Nike sided with Salazar and continued to back him even after the ban, which Salazar is appealing.

(09/19/2020) Views: 101 ⚡AMP
by Oregon Live
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CAS to hear Salazar appeal in November

The Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) has said it will hear banned track coach Alberto Salazar’s appeal to overturn his four-year doping suspension in November.

American Salazar, who coached some of the world’s top distance runners including British Olympic and world champion Mo Farah, was banned by the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency (USADA) in October for “orchestrating and facilitating” doping as head coach of the Nike Oregon Project (NOP).

Swiss-based CAS, the world’s highest sports court, said on Tuesday it would hear appeals from Salazar and endocrinologist Jeffrey Brown between Nov. 8-16. Brown, who worked for NOP on performance enhancement and served as a physician for numerous athletes in the training program, was also banned by USADA for four years.

Nike Inc, which funds NOP — an elite long-distance running training centre in Portland under a long-term sponsorship deal with U.S. Track and Field — has previously said it would support Salazar’s bid to clear his name.No NOP runner was directly implicated in doping by USADA.

Salazar won three consecutive New York City marathons from 1980 before coaching a slew of Olympians, including Farah, who won the 5,000 and 10,000m golds at the London and Rio Olympics before splitting with the American in 2017.

Farah has never failed a drugs test and has not been accused of any wrongdoing.

(06/06/2020) Views: 181 ⚡AMP
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Two elite athletes Mary Cain and Nick Willis sign with Tracksmith as full-time employees

Tracksmith, the independent running apparel brand out of Boston, announced its newest pair of partner athletes: Mary Cain and Nick Willis. This is not a traditional partnership, though, as Cain and Willis will both be working as full-time employees for the company in addition to running for the brand.

The duo will represent Tracksmith as they both work toward the Tokyo Olympic Games, which are set for July 2021, and they will do it as amateurs, a term that Tracksmith is looking to reclaim for everyone who loves to run.

In a post entitled “For the love” on the Tracksmith website announcing the brand’s newest partnership, founder and CEO Matt Taylor talks about the word “amateur,” which comes from Latin roots meaning “to love” and “I love.”

Taylor says “amateur” only recently became a term for non-professionals (around the 19th century or so), and now the team at Tracksmith wants to take the term back to its roots and refer to anyone who loves to run as “amateurs.”

In sports, athlete sponsorships are always dictated by results, and the better an athlete performs, the stronger their brand partnerships become. On the other hand, if their results start to decline, it’s not uncommon to see these relationships deteriorate and disappear.

This won’t be the case for Cain and Willis, because, working as Tracksmith employees and representing the brand as amateurs, they will have “the freedom to participate in the sport with no expectations or pressures outside of the ones they place on themselves.”

Cain made international headlines in November when she told the New York Times about the abuse she sustained while running with the Nike Oregon Project (NOP) under now-banned coach Alberto Salazar. Cain won gold in the 3,000m at the the world junior championships in 2014 before leaving the NOP a year later. In 2020, she returned to racing for the first time since 2016, and she is now working toward making her first U.S. Olympic team.

Cain’s official role at Tracksmith is New York community manager, and she will help grow the company’s “on-the-ground and virtual efforts in one of the most vibrant running scenes in the world.”

Willis, who’s 37 years old, tweeted he was leaving Adidas on Sunday, and there was some speculation that he might be retiring. Today, he tweeted again, saying, “I’m not retiring; I’m turning amateur.” Willis is a two-time Olympic medallist for New Zealand, having won silver in the 1,500m in Beijing in 2008 and bronze in the same event eight years later in Rio.

Willis is quoted on the Tracksmith site, saying, “It may sound counterintuitive, but I always discovered that my running career thrived the most when I embraced more. My best years, my fastest times, all emerged from times in my life when my running came, well, second.”

He’ll be looking to qualify for his fourth Olympics in 2021 while working as the athlete experience manager at Tracksmith, building programs to “inspire, motivate and deepen our community’s connection to the sport.”

(05/13/2020) Views: 391 ⚡AMP
by Ben Snider-McGrath
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Salazar has appealed against the ban to the Court of British anti-doping agency Arbitration for Sport

UK Athletics said Wednesday it had at last handed over an internal report into its relationship with banned American coach Alberto Salazar during the time he worked with track star Mo Farah to Britain's national anti-doping agency.

The report dates back to 2015 and was prompted by a BBC documentary on Salazar.

The disgraced coach is currently serving a four-year ban imposed by the United States Anti-Doping Agency in October for offences that include trafficking in testosterone, tampering with the doping control process and administering illicit infusions of the fat-burning substance L-carnitine.

Salazar, who denies wrongdoing, has appealed against the ban to the Court of Arbitration for Sport.

Just over a month ago, an independent review of both the 2015 report and another undertaken two years later, was published.

But United Kingdom Anti-Doping executive chief Nicole Sapstead demanded to see the original report in full after UK Athletics merely provided an edited summary.

UK Athletics responded by saying it was "wholly wrong and inaccurate" to suggest they were "being obstructive in this matter," with chief executive Joanna Coates saying earlier this month the report would go to UKAD just as soon as all confidentiality procedures had been completed.

UK Athletics confirmed Wednesday the report had been sent over, a statement saying: "UKA can confirm that the 2015 report has been provided to UKAD.

"UKA remains fully committed to protecting the integrity of the sport and the pursuit of clean athletics and we will continue to assist UKAD with any further queries."

Four-time Olympic gold medallist Farah, twice champion at both the 5,000 and 10,000 metres, worked with Salazar from 2011-2017.

The British distance great, who has never failed a drugs test, is not accused of any wrongdoing.

(04/30/2020) Views: 185 ⚡AMP
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Sir Mo Farah pays emotional tribute to former trainer Neil Black after his sudden death

‘Double-double’ Olympic champion says he has ‘lost a good friend’ after his old trainer and the former performance director at UK Athletics died at the weekend at the age of 60.

Four-time Olympic champion Sir Mo Farah says his “heart is broken” after former trainer Neil Black died suddenly at the weekend.

Black, the former performance director of UK Athletics, is believed to have died from natural causes at the age of 60, just six months after resigning from his position with the governing body.

The news, which was announced by UKA alongside a brief statement from his family, triggered an outpouring of emotional tributes from athletes past and present who worked with Black, with Farah among the very best to have benefited from his work after claiming consecutive 5,000m and 10,000m doubles at London 2012 and Rio 2016 during their time together.

“I have lost a good friend!” Farah wrote on Twitter. “Known him since I was 14 years old. Neil supported me all the way in my career since I was kid!! My heart is broken ... I wouldn’t be where I am today without Neil Black ... no one knew me like he did!! We lost a great man.”

Black’s death came as a shock to all of those who had worked with him, given he was last seen in the public eye at the 2019 World Athletics Championship in Doha last October. The disappointing tally of five British medals proved Team GB’s worst performance since 2005, and that combined with his support for controversial American trainer Alberto Salazar – the former trainer of Mo Farah who has been banned from athletics for four years by the United States Anti-Doping Agency for numerous drugs-related offences – cost Black his position.

However, such was the regard for his contribution towards the sport, UKA continued to use Black in an advisory role ahead of the postponed Tokyo Olympics.

The former UKA boss was described as a man who dedicated his life and passion to the sport after achieving his “dream job” and who was “like a second father” to budding young sportsmen and women making their way in track and field, with dozens of athletes posting messages of condolence on Twitter along with Farah.

(04/22/2020) Views: 202 ⚡AMP
by Jack de Menezes
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Former UK Athletics performance director Neil Black, dies at age 60

Neil Black, the former performance director of UK Athletics, has died aged 60, the organization has confirmed.

Black, who worked closely with Mo Farah throughout his career, became performance director in September 2012.

He left his position in 2019 after coach Alberto Salazar was banned for four years for doping violations.

British four-time Olympic champion Farah paid tribute on Twitter, saying: "I have lost a good friend. Known him since I was 14 years old."

Farah added: "Neil supported me all the way in my career since I was kid. My heart is broken. I wouldn't be where I am today without Neil Black. No-one knew me like he did. We lost a great man."

A UK Athletics statement released on Tuesday said Black died at the weekend; the organisation said it was "shocked and saddened" at the news.

"Neil loved the sport of athletics and dedicated his life to supporting athletes - as a world-class physiotherapist, as head of sport science, and then in recent years as performance director for British Athletics," the statement continued.

Ed Warner, former UK Athletics chairman, described Black's death as "an immense loss to British high performance sport and to athletics in particular".

Warner added: "It was a great privilege to work with him, and to share the highs and lows of British teams through the cycles of major competitions. I'll particularly treasure our celebratory clinch in the mixed zone at the Olympic Stadium after the last session of the London 2017 World Championships.

"Neil bore the barbs of the critics that are an inevitable part of the job of any leader in elite performance sport with a grace and sense of humour that were truly a mark of the man.

"He wanted to lead the British teams into Tokyo. He won't now be able to cheer their successes there.

"But I am certain there are British athletes who will win medals in Olympics and championships to come who will look back with enormous gratitude at the role Neil played in preparing them for their success. He will be greatly missed."

Black was a physiotherapist with UK Athletics before moving up through the organisation's ranks.

He worked with Farah as the athlete won 5,000m and 10,000m gold at the London 2012 and Rio 2016 Olympics.

Black made the decision to step down as performance director in October 2019 after the banning of Salazar, who coached Farah from 2011 to 2017, and who was appointed as a consultant by UK Athletics in 2013.

UK Athletics had conducted a review in 2015 and said there was "no concern" about Salazar's link with Farah.

In 2015, following a BBC Panorama programme, the United States Anti-Doping Agency (Usada) began an investigation into how Salazar ran the Nike Oregon Project.

Salazar has always denied that the Nike Oregon Project permitted doping, saying he was "shocked" by Usada's findings, and he is appealing against the ban.

UK Athletics said that Black continued to work as an adviser to several athletes following his resignation.

(04/22/2020) Views: 216 ⚡AMP
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Dr. Michael Joyner, the Guy Who Predicted the Sub-2:00 Marathon, Now Helping Lead the COVID-19 Fight

Dr. Michael Joyner of the Mayo Clinic is best known in running circles as being the guy who in 1991 published a paper saying a human being could run a marathon in 1:57:58. Joyner, an anesthesiologist and physiologist by trade, now is using his skills on a much more serious matter by helping lead the National COVID-19 Convalescent Plasma Project (CCPP19). The CCPP19 is a nationwide effort of researchers, institutions, and blood blanks to try to use plasma from recovered COVID-19 patients to better treat patients suffering from COVID-19.

“What we’re trying to do is leverage the antibodies produced by people who have recovered from COVID-19. Harvest those antibodies from recovered patients and then give these antibodies in the form of plasma to people to either prevent disease in people that have been exposed but aren’t yet sick, to treat people who are in the hospital and try to keep them from going to the intensive care unit, or to try to shorten the stay in the intensive care unit. This is called convalescent plasma therapy. It’s been around since the late 1800s. It’s worked numerous times before,” said Joyner on this week’s LetsRun.com Track Talk Podcast.

Joyner said the goal is for people to continue to practice social distancing and proper pandemic control while groups like his develop better short-term treatments for COVID-19 before a vaccine can be made to really stop the virus.

“We believe it’s our best shot on kind of [a] biological goal in the short run, and then after that, we anticipate concentrated gamma globulin, like antibodies, [being] available toward the end of the summer. And then we are waiting for the vaccine and biotech cavalry to come to the rescue,” Joyner said.

Running did play a tangential role in getting Joyner involved with CCPP19. Joyner has always been interested in oxygen transport and physiology because of his days as a competitive runner at the University of Arizona. Recently, Joyner was on Twitter and he saw a retweet by David Epstein, the former Columbia 800m runner and former ProPublica journalist who, along with the BBC, broke the allegations that Alberto Salazar and the Nike Oregon Project were breaking anti-doping rules.

The retweet was a link to a Wall Street Journal article by Dr. Arturo Casadevall on using antibodies to try to treat the coronavirus:

(04/12/2020) Views: 205 ⚡AMP
by Letsrun
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Twenty years, it’s been a good run, but as of May 7, 2020, LetsRun.com will be no more, LetsRun.com declares bankruptcy says Jonathan Gault

The worldwide economic depression that has resulted from COVID-19 has cratered the advertising markets and it’s no longer economically feasible to run the website.

“May 7, 2000, was a dark day for US distance running fans and me personally, so the 20th anniversary of that date is the perfect day to go out,” said LetsRun.com co-founder Weldon Johnson, who saw his Olympic dream denied on the streets of Pittsburgh at the 2000 US Olympic Marathon Trials on May 7 when only one man made the team. “The coronavirus canceled the Olympics and now it’s canceled LetsRun.com.

“It’s never been easy to make a living while giving away everything for free, but the decline in the online ad markets over the last few weeks has been unprecedented. Couple that with the fact that online ad marketplaces have gotten much better at tracking people in recent years and our revenue has almost entirely dried up. The advertisers now know that most of our visitors haven’t achieved the ‘LetsRun triple.’ While many have the potential to make well over $250,000 a year, the reality is most of them have never had a full-time job and are living in mom and dad’s basement still chasing that final PR before Father Time gets to them.”

Robert Johnson, Weldon’s brother and the website’s co-founder, didn’t want to talk on the phone. He issued the following statement via email.

Weldon keeps telling me our demise is all the result of COVID-19. That’s hard for me to believe, but maybe that’s because I live in Baltimore, where in the month of March we’ve had 18 killed by murder and only 3 by the coronavirus. Ironically, given the leading role we’ve played during the last two decades in the anti-doping movement, I blame our demise on Travis Tygart and USADA. Once Alberto Salazar got banned, the messageboard traffic really plummeted. People had been speculating about drugs in regards to Athletics West and Salazar since our founding, but now that that storyline has come to a conclusion, there isn’t anything left to talk about. 

I begged Weldon to keep the site going until Salazar’s appeal is heard. If his ban gets overturned, the site could become profitable again. But with his baby due in early May, he told me can’t hold out any longer. He’s heard he can make six figures delivering for Instacart in San Fran and since he was used to sleeping in his car often high up in the mountains in Flagstaff, he’ll give that a go until the economy comes back. I feel for him as he won’t even get to see his daughter in person.

Weldon, the elder brother and brains behind the LetsRun.com operation, refused to take a negative view about the closure of the site.“This isn’t a day for ‘woe is me.’ It’s been a great run and I’m really proud of the contributions the platform has made to elevating distance running. When we started the website, the marathon world records were 2:05:42 for the men and 2:20:43 for the women. Now a man has run 1:59:41 and a woman 2:14:04 and we’ve certainly played a role in that, both by developing a platform where coaching advice could spread and by actually pacing two of those world records, one for Catherine Ndereba and one for Paula Radcliffe. Social justice warriors be damned, I’m most proud of the role we’ve played in elevating women’s distance running across the globe. That’s what I hope people will remember us for,” said Weldon.

(04/01/2020) Views: 509 ⚡AMP
by Jonathan Gault
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Mo Farah explains over taking supplement

Mo Farah has explained how he came to change his account when questioned in 2015 about taking the supplement L-carnitine before the 2014 London Marathon.

A BBC Panorama documentary aired last Monday revealed that Farah was interviewed by investigators from the US Anti-Doping Agency in 2015 as part of its investigation into his former coach Alberto Salazar and asked whether he had been given L-carnitine before the previous year’s London Marathon.

Farah was tested six days after that race and the BBC reported that, despite listing a number of other products and medicines, he failed to record L-carnitine on his doping control form. In transcripts obtained by the BBC, Farah denies having been given the injection in the initial 2015 interview with Usada.

Panorama reported he then met the UK Athletics head of distance running, Barry Fudge, immediately after the interview and returned to the room as the investigators were preparing to leave. At this point, Farah, who won 5,000 metres and 10,000m gold at the 2012 and 2016 Olympic Games, told them he had been given the injection.

In an interview with the Sunday Mirror, Farah explains: “I was questioned for five hours. I said one thing and then other things got said and now it’s made out like I’ve done wrong, but if you know how it happened then it’s easier to understand. When I came out I said to Barry, ‘Hey mate, they kept asking me about this supplement. What’s that?’

“He said, ‘Yeah, it’s this, you did take it’, so I went straight back in and told them. I forgot, but as soon as I was told I ran back in. If I was a liar, why would I go straight back in? I said, ‘Look, I genuinely forgot, I didn’t know that. Now I do.’”

Farah said when he was questioned by investigators he thought he had only been given magnesium injections. “I was 100% convinced I hadn’t taken it [L-carnitine],” Farah said. “In my mind I hadn’t taken anything else apart from magnesium. I put magnesium on the doping control form.

“I can sleep at night knowing I’ve done nothing wrong. I love representing my country, making my country proud and doing what I do best because it is a gift and that’s why I do it with a smile. But it’s not fair what comes with it. It’s not fair on my kids and my family. It’s just not right. It’s depressing. Mentally and physically it’s had an effect on me.”

L-carnitine is not a prohibited substance under Wada rules. Injections and infusions of it were permitted within Wada rules in 2014 provided the volume was below 50 millilitres every six hours. The permitted volume is now 100ml every 12 hours.

Salazar, Farah’s former coach at the Nike Oregon Project, was handed a four-year ban by Usada in October last year for doping violations, though he has appealed to the court of arbitration for sport.

Farah, who ended his relationship with the American in 2017, has never failed a drugs test and is not accused of any wrongdoing.

(03/19/2020) Views: 265 ⚡AMP
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Virgin London Marathon

Virgin London Marathon

The London Marathon was first run on March 29, 1981 and has been held in the spring of every year since 2010. It is sponsored by Virgin Money and was founded by the former Olympic champion and journalist Chris Brasher and Welsh athlete John Disley. It is organized by Hugh Brasher (son of Chris) as Race Director and Nick Bitel...

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Galen Rupp won the U.S. Olympic Marathon Trials for a second straight time

Galen Rupp won the U.S. Olympic Marathon Trials for a second straight time, returning from a coaching change and major injury to repeat as champion.  The trials were held Feb 29 in Atlanta Georgia.

Rupp, a two-time Olympic medalist, clocked an unofficial 2:09:20 to win by about 42 seconds and qualify for his fourth Olympics. He is joined on the Olympic team by second- and third-place finishers Jacob Riley and Abdi Abdirahman.

Rupp was the  2016 Olympic Marathon Bronze Medalist.  The 33-year-old Galen is from Portland Oregon.  At the 2012 Olympics Galen was the 10,000m Silver Medalist.

Today was a bit challening. The wind was very strong but the temp was perfect being 50 degrees at the start.

After 20 miles Galen was in total control. The big question of the day was who was going to place second and third. At 25 miles Abdirahman, Maiyo, Korir and Riley were within two seconds of each other with Jacob Riley leading them. 31-year-old Riley best time before today was 2:10:36.

Jacob Riley finished second clocking 2:10:02 a new personal best for him.  Abdirahman, 43, will break Bernard Lagat‘s record as the oldest U.S. Olympic runner in history. He will become the second American runner to compete in five Olympics, joining Gail Devers, according to Olympic historian Bill Mallon.

Jared Ward, who was sixth in the Rio Olympic marathon, began fading from a chase pack soon after Rupp surged to the lead in the 16th mile.

Rupp finished a marathon for the first time since October 2018. In between, he underwent Achilles surgery and dropped out of the 2019 Chicago Marathon with a calf injury. He also lost career-long coach Alberto Salazar to a doping suspension last fall.

Rupp was not implicated by the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency and has a clean drug-testing record.

“I feel relief, almost, more than anything,” Rupp told Lewis Johnson on NBC. “It’s been a really long year and a half.”

(02/29/2020) Views: 355 ⚡AMP
by Nick Zaccardi
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2020 US Olympic Trials Marathon

2020 US Olympic Trials Marathon

The 2020 US Olympic Trials for both men and women took place in Atlanta, Ga on Sunday Feb 29. Runners had to qualify by running certain standards beforehand. The trials are hosted by the Atlanta Track club. The course runs through the heart of Atlanta and past monuments from the 1996 Olympic Games Most countries around the world use a...

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Mo Farah is facing fresh allegations that he repeatedly denied receiving a controversial supplement via injection to United States Anti-Doping Agency (Usada) officials ahead of the 2014 London Marathon

The allegations have been made after BBC Panorama claimed to have received new evidence regarding Farah’s use of L-carnitine, a performance-enhancing supplement that is legal in limited doses.

A documentary on the allegations will be screened on Monday night, in which it is claimed that Farah was injected with L-carnitine in April 2014, a week before he finished eighth in the London Marathon.

It is alleged that Farah was injected with the supplement by the then UK Athletics doctor Robin Chakraverty, who it appears failed to record it properly.

Farah and his team were summoned by the Digital, Culture, Media and Sport select committee to attend a Combatting Doping in Sport inquiry after the Sunday Times first revealed the L-carnitine infusion, where Dr Chakraverty insisted the volume administered to Farah was 13.5ml, well short of the 50ml legal limit. There is no evidence that any World Anti-Doping Agency (Wada) rules were broken.

However, according to the BBC, Farah “repeatedly denied” having L-carnitine injected when quizzed by Usada officials who travelled to London in 2015 to speak to the Olympic champion’s team as part of their investigation into his disgraced former trainer Alberto Salazar, who has since been banned from the sport for four years for anti-doping offences.

Farah declined to speak to BBC Panorama regarding the new allegations, while Salazar has rejected the findings by US arbitrators and has appealed his four-year ban.

The investigation has also uncovered emails between Fudge, former UK Athletics performance director Neil Black and Dr Chakraverty in which they question whether the use of L-carnitine is in the “spirit of the sport”, and claimed they would have preferred to have trialled the use of the supplement first given it was not readily available in the UK in its concentrated form. As a result, Fudge had to travel to Switzerland to meet a contact of Salazar’s who was able to supply it for use just two days before the Marathon on 11 April.

In response to the BBC’s claims, Farah’s lawyers sent a letter that read:  "It is not against (Wada rules) rules to take (L-carnitine) as a supplement within the right quantities.

"The fact some people might hold views as to whether this is within the 'spirit' of the sport is irrelevant.

"Mr Farah … is one of the most tested athletes in the UK, if not the world, and has been required to fill in numerous doping forms. He is a human being and not robot.

(02/24/2020) Views: 311 ⚡AMP
by Jack de Menezes
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Virgin London Marathon

Virgin London Marathon

The London Marathon was first run on March 29, 1981 and has been held in the spring of every year since 2010. It is sponsored by Virgin Money and was founded by the former Olympic champion and journalist Chris Brasher and Welsh athlete John Disley. It is organized by Hugh Brasher (son of Chris) as Race Director and Nick Bitel...

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Galen Rupp says he is ready for the US Olympic Marathon Trials

Portland's Galen Rupp will attempt to make his fourth U.S. Olympic team in next weekend's marathon trials in Atlanta. 

After a turbulent 16 months Galen Rupp is in a better place now physically and emotionally, and just in time.

The former University of Oregon star and Portland resident will attempt to make his fourth U.S. Olympic team in next Saturday’s marathon trials in Atlanta.

“I’ve had a great last week and a half of training,” Rupp says. “I got some good speed work in. I did a really long run that went longer than marathon distance. I’m feeling really good about where I’m at.”

Rupp, 33, is the reigning men’s trials champion and the 2016 Olympic marathon bronze medalist. But in some ways that was in another lifetime.

He last completed a marathon in October of 2018, when he came across fifth in Chicago. The next day his left foot was so swollen he barely could walk.

Doctors determined the problem was a bony protrusion on his heel that was causing the Achilles tendon to fray. It required surgerythat kept him out of action for months.

Rupp’s left leg still wasn’t right when he returned to competition a year later for last fall’s Chicago Marathon. He was forced off the course late in the race with a calf strain.

“I told myself, ‘This is going to hurt like crazy. You’re just going to have to suck it up and get through it,’” Rupp says of his pre-race mindset. “Unfortunately, my body didn’t allow me to do that.”

By then, Rupp was without his coach, Alberto Salazar. Salazar had been given a four-year ban two weeks earlier for violating doping rules. Nike disbanded the Oregon Project, the distance team which Salazar coached and of which Rupp was a member.

None of the violations for which Salazar was banned were for intentionally doping athletes. None of Salazar’s athletes were implicated in violations that led to the ban, nor have any failed drug tests. Salazar is appealing the ban.

But the upshot was, Rupp was without the man who had been his primary coach since high school. It was a tough time.

“I’m pretty religious, a strong Catholic,” Rupp says. “I truly believe God has this big plan for each and every one of us. Even if it doesn’t make sense at the time, or you’re struggling to see some good in it, you have to just keep pushing through it. It’s about having faith that it’s going to be all right.”

The philosophy has allowed him to put the pain, the injury setbacks, the coaching upheaval aside and turn his attention inward.

“All I can do is try to be the best athlete, the best person, the best husband, the best father I can be.” Rupp says. “Obviously, none of us is perfect. I would rather focus on what I can do to keep making myself better than worry about things I can’t control.”

He studied Tai Chi, which has helped him zero in on what matters most to him, being fully present for his wife, Keara, and their four children and getting race-ready for Atlanta.

At long last, Galen Rupp is within reach of the mountain top

He hired Northern Arizona coach Mike Smith to oversee his training. Smith has flown up from Flagstaff a few times to supervise workouts. But for the most part, former Oregon Project assistant Tim Rowberry has served as Smith’s eyes in Portland.

Rupp says the new coaching arrangement has worked well. Smith kept much of the training Rupp had been doing with Salazar, but not all.

“I wasn’t looking for someone who just wanted to replicate things and be a yes man,” Rupp says. “I think that would have been almost the worst thing. I wanted someone who was going to continue to challenge me.”

Rupp tested himself three weeks ago while winning the Sprouts Mesa Half Marathon in Mesa, Arizona in 1 hour, 1 minute, 19 seconds.

He looked good, felt good and came back from Arizona with renewed confidence. His left leg held up.

“There were a few little thoughts, like, ‘What if it does start to hurt again?’” Rupp says. “Obviously, the last year hasn’t gone all that great.

“That stuff certainly was running through my head. But running the race and feeling as good as I did and as strong as I did on that leg — I wouldn’t say it’s completely back to where it was before the surgery, but it’s pretty darn close.”

Rupp says he has driven himself hard to be prepared for anything he might see in Atlanta — the weather, the hills, the competition and the physical discomfort.

“It’s how I’ve always looked at training,” he says. “You put yourself in extremely uncomfortable situations. You make yourself hurt. You make yourself suffer. That’s how you get better.”

(02/23/2020) Views: 313 ⚡AMP
by Ken Goe (Oregon Live)
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2020 US Olympic Trials Marathon

2020 US Olympic Trials Marathon

The 2020 US Olympic Trials for both men and women took place in Atlanta, Ga on Sunday Feb 29. Runners had to qualify by running certain standards beforehand. The trials are hosted by the Atlanta Track club. The course runs through the heart of Atlanta and past monuments from the 1996 Olympic Games Most countries around the world use a...

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Galen Rupp breezed to victory Saturday in the Sprouts Mesa Half Marathon

Galen Rupp covered the 13.1-mile course in Mesa, Arizona in 1:01.19. He crossed the finish line comfortably in front of veteran road-racer Matt Llano, second in 1:02.05.

The race was the first for Rupp since he was forced off the course late in the Chicago Marathon in October with a left calf strain, and only his second since undergoing surgery in 2018 on his left heel.

Rupp said going into Saturday’s race that it would serve as a tuneup for the U.S. Olympic Marathon Trials, Feb. 29 in Atlanta.

It also was the first time Rupp had raced since announcing he is being coached by Northern Arizona coach Mike Smith. Rupp, 33, had been coached by Alberto Salazar since attending Portland’s Central Catholic High School.

Salazar is serving a four-year ban for violating doping rules. Salazar is appealing the ban.

Rupp is a two-time Olympic medalist. The former University of Oregon runner won the silver medal in the 10,000 meters in 2012, and the bronze in the marathon in 2016. He will be attempting to make his fourth U.S. Olympic team at the marathon trials in Atlanta.

(02/08/2020) Views: 399 ⚡AMP
by Ken Goe
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Nike’s Investigation of the Oregon Project is Complete

After Mary Cain alleged emotional abuse as an athlete under Alberto Salazar’s coaching, Nike conducted an internal probe of the professional running group.

Nike said on Monday that it is planning to take multiple actions to better support its female professional athletes, following an internal investigation into the now-defunct professional running group, the Oregon Project.

The company started the probe in November after former Oregon Project athlete Mary Cain went public with a New York Times op-ed piece about her experiences as a young track star under coach Alberto Salazar, who is currently serving a four-year ban from the sport for doping violations. (Salazar denies the charges and is appealing them—Nike said in an email to Women’s Running on Monday that “we support Alberto in his decision to appeal and wish him the full measure of due process that the rules require.”)

Cain joined the Oregon Project as a teen phenom, foregoing NCAA eligibility in 2013 to sign a pro contract with Nike. She moved from Bronxville, New York, to Portland, Oregon, at age 17, as a national high school record holder—the youngest athlete to ever represent the U.S. in a world-championships competition, where she raced the 1500 meters.

In the documentary, titled “I Was the Fastest Girl in America, Until I Joined Nike,” she described the pressure that Salazar and the all-male Oregon Project staff put on her to become thinner in order to perform better. Cain said she was weighed in front of her teammates and publicly shamed by Salazar for not hitting the goals he demanded—allegations that were later corroborated by former members of the group.

Now 23 years old, Cain said while training with the Oregon Project and during a period afterward, she suffered five stress fractures and didn’t menstruate for three years, which are symptoms of RED-S (relative energy deficiency in sport), a syndrome of insufficient caloric intake, with symptoms that can include excessive fatigue, amenorrhea, and decreased bone density. It can have serious long-term health effects like cardiovascular disease, infertility, and osteoporosis. Before she left Oregon to return home in 2015, she said she felt so isolated and trapped that she had suicidal thoughts and cut herself.

After the New York Times piece was published, Salazar denied any abuse or gender discrimination at the Oregon Project and added, “I may have made comments that were callous or insensitive over the course of years of helping my athletes through hard training.”

In the email to Women’s Running on Monday, Nike said the results of the internal investigation will not be made public, but “we are using the findings to identify areas where we can do better in supporting female athletes.” It was not confirmed who was involved in leading the investigation or who participated in it.

The initiatives that Nike identified include:

• Investing in scientific research into the impact of elite athlete training of girls and women

• Increasing the number of women coaches in sports

• Hiring a vice president of global women’s sports marketing in the coming weeks to have “strategic oversight” of Nike’s female athletes

• Creating an athlete think tank to help the company understand the opportunities and challenges faced by female athletes

• Partnering with Crisis Text Line, a free, confidential text messaging service for people to ask for help when in crisis

During a phone interview with Women’s Running on Monday, Cain said she was contacted in the fall by phone and email by a Nike lawyer, but opted not to participate in the probe because some of the people involved were Nike employees whose participation in it made her feel uncomfortable.

“There was no real transparency in the process, so I became very frustrated with the fact that there was no clear-cut person in charge, it was Nike investigating Nike, and seemingly some of the people involved in the process were investigating themselves,” she said.

Upon hearing the actions that Nike—the biggest sponsor of the sport’s governing body, U.S.A. Track & Field (a deal that goes through 2040 with an estimated value of $500 million)—wants to take as a result of the findings, Cain said she supports anything that promotes women’s health and opportunities in sports.

“It’s great to push money and push opportunity into the future—I whole-heartedly support that,” she said. “But the vagueness and no ability to see the report makes me worried that they’re hiding behind gestures that will almost make people forget the issues.”

Runners and other athletes have identified with Cain’s experiences since she shared them, creating a public conversation about the destructive culture underlying sports, where antiquated training philosophies perpetuated by a male-dominated coaching profession often result in eating disorders and worse for athletes.

“I have this renewed love of the sport that I only really found in the last few months because I do have so much hope in what women’s sports can and will become—so anything that’s generating interest and investment and research, I’m all for,” Cain said. “What I hope can happen through some of this work is that Nike can start hearing more voices.”

Still, Cain is hesitant to put too much stock in the proposed initiatives.

“It looks both weak and cowardly that as a corporation they won’t release what they found,” she said. “There’s a certain point where people would have a lot more respect for them as a broader institution and respect what they’re now trying to do if they also admitted what they did wrong. I can’t look at a future brightly if I can’t see them reflecting on their past.”

Since November, Cain has returned to training after about three years away, with the goal of making the U.S. Olympic Track & Field Trials in June. She most recently raced the 3,000 meters on Saturday at the Armory in New York, finishing in 9:24.38.

In December, she told Women’s Running that advocating for women’s sports and healthy coaching practices is her new dream.

“Due to lack of education and inappropriate societal norms, many people have a poor understanding of how to address topics such as women’s cycles, weight, and training appropriately,” Cain said. “My goal is now to create educational programs that coaches and athletes must take on these subjects.”

(02/02/2020) Views: 335 ⚡AMP
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Nike has completed the internal investigation into the shuttered NOP

In a Women’s Running story, journalist Erin Strout says Nike has completed the internal investigation it committed to in the wake of Mary Cain’s explosive New York Times video. 

And while it won’t be making its findings public, it did identify and share some specific initiatives relating to its professional female athletes.

Cain’s video exposed unethical coaching practices at the Nike Oregon Project, which was shut down 10 days after USADA served head coach Alberto Salazar with a four-year ban for doping violations on September 30, 2019–practices that included body- and weight-shaming, public weigh-ins and criticism that severely damaged Cain’s physical and mental health and led to her quietly leaving the NOP in 2015. Cain disappeared from the competition circuit, but is now working her way back into the scene under a new coach, while advocating publicly for women athletes.

The iniatives Strout listed include: 1.- Studying how elite training affects female athletes, 2.- Hiring more female coaches, 3.- Creating a new senior-level position to oversee international women’s sports marketing, 4.- Creating a group of pro female athletes to inform and advise the company on concerns specific to its female athletes, 5.- A new partnership with CrisisTextLine, a confidential, free text message service for people in crisis (in Canada, the service is run by Kids Help Phone).

Strout reports that Cain was invited to participate in the investigation but declined, telling her she perceived a lack of transparency. Regarding the initiatives announced, Cain said she “supports anything that promotes women’s health and opportunities in sports,” but was critical of the decision not to share the results of the investigation publicly, calling it “weak and cowardly.”

After an absence of more than three years, Cain recently started racing again. She had a disappointing 3,000m race at the Dr. Sander Invitational in New York on the weekend, but acknowledged in a post-race interview that regaining competitiveness will take time and incremental improvement.

(01/28/2020) Views: 256 ⚡AMP
by Anne Francis
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Mo Farah confirmed he will compete in the Vitality Big Half in London on March 1

Mo Farah will launch his 2020 season in London after confirming he will run the Vitality Big Half on March 1.

Sportsmail reported last week that Farah was in talks to run in the capital and now he has signed to face off against three-time Olympic gold medallist Kenenisa Bekele.

The race will serve as early-season preparation for the Tokyo Olympics, where Farah will run the 10,000m after turning his back on the marathon. 

He will be racing in Britain for the first time since his former coach Alberto Salazar was banned for anti-doping violations - a verdict that has brought renewed scrutiny on their relationship.

Farah said: 'I am really looking forward to coming back to The Vitality Big Half and kicking off my 2020 season. 

'Everyone knows how much I enjoy racing in London. It's my home city and it always gives me a buzz to come back and race here.'

Farah is also expected to run at the Anniversary Games at the London Stadium in July.

(01/23/2020) Views: 364 ⚡AMP
by Riath Al-Samarrai
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The Vitality Big Half

The Vitality Big Half

Created by London Marathon Events Ltd, in partnership with Sported,The Vitality Big Half is a community running festival, taking place in London in March. This one-day event offers a host of running distances, from a challenging half marathon to a free one-mile course, as well as a family-friendly festival of food, music and activities. What’s happening? Take part with friends...

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Many are expressing skepticism over the reasons UKAthletics gives for refusing to hand over samples

Before retiring as head of WADA, Sir Craig Reedie announced that WADA would investigate athletes who trained with disgraced former Nike Oregon Project coach Alberto Salazar, a list that includes 2:05 marathoner Sir Mo Farah. However, UKAthletics has refused to hand over Farah’s samples for re-testing, and as a result has been criticized by Russia for creating a “wall of mistrust.”

Salazar, along with NOP doctor Jeffrey Brown, was issued a four-year ban for doping violations in September, 2019, and the NOP itself was shut down by Nike in the ensuing weeks. Salazar is appealing the ban.

A report in the Telegraph says samples are habitually stored for up to 10 years so that as technology advances they can be re-tested using more accurate methods. UKAthletics CEO Nicole Sapstead claims samples are the property of UKAthletics, and that further testing, without compelling new evidence that they contain prohibited substances, degrades the samples.

According to WADA’s Blood Sample Collection Guidelines, “Samples collected from an Athlete are owned by the Testing Authority for the Sample Collection Session in question. The Testing Authority may transfer ownership of the Samples to the Results Management Authority (RMA) or to another ADO upon request.”

RUSADA deputy general director Margarita Pakhnotskaya referred to the World Anti-Doping Code, whose Article 6.5 states that “Samples may be stored and subjected to further analyses for the purpose of Article 6.2 at any time exclusively at the direction of the Anti-Doping Organization that initiated and directed Sample collection or WADA.”  (Article 6.2 describes the purpose of analysis of samples.)

Farah, who left the NOP in 2017 to return to the U.K., has never failed a drug test. He was recently quoted as saying that if he had been aware of the activities that got Salazar banned, he would have left sooner.

The 2012 and 2016 Olympic gold medallist in both the 5,000m and the 10,000m is planning a return to the track for the Tokyo 2020 Olympics.

UKAthletics has been the focus of negative publicity since the Salazar ban, which came down in the midst of the World Championships in Doha.

(01/20/2020) Views: 386 ⚡AMP
by Anne Francis
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Mo Farah says he would have been the first one out of the Nike Oregon Project if he had known about Alberto Salazar’s dubious practices

Mo Farah had previously refused to be overly critical of Salazar after he was banned by the US Anti-Doping Agency for four years last October, instead turning his crosshairs on reporters when they asked him whether he felt let down by his former mentor.

But in an interview with the BBC on Thursday the 36-year-old, who worked under Alberto Salazar between 2011 and 2017, said he would have acted differently if he knew what was really going on.

“I believe in clean sports,” said Farah, who was asked whether his legacy was tainted by his association with a coach who had violated anti-doping rules. “I continue to enjoy my sports and do what I do. At the same time had I had known the news, what Salazar did, it’s taken four years, had I known that sooner I would have been the first one out,” Farah, 36, said.

“That’s the bit that’s kind of annoying, I wish I’d known quicker. But at the same time I will continue to make my country proud and make the kids proud.”

However Farah, who recently announced he would return to the track to run the 10,000m in Tokyo, is still likely to continue to face questions about why he stuck with Salazar after 2015 when the BBC and ProPublica raised serious questions about some of his methods, including the use of the banned drug testosterone on his sons in a bizarre experiment.

That sparked a formal investigation by Usada (the US anti-doping agency), who in October announced that Salazar had been banned for “orchestrating and facilitating prohibited doping conduct”.

In Farah’s defence, a UK Athletics inquiry in 2015 found “no reason to be concerned” about his working with Salazar in the autumn. However that is now the subject of a fresh and forensic independent review to see what mistakes were made and the lessons that can be learned.

(01/13/2020) Views: 382 ⚡AMP
by Athletics News
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Mike Smith is the new coach for Galen Rupp

Two-time Olympic medalist Galen Rupp has a new coach.

Rupp, whose previous coach, Alberto Salazar, is serving a four-year ban from track due to anti-doping violations, is now entrusting his training to Mike Smith, the head coach of the Northern Arizona University cross-country and track teams.

Smith confirmed the coaching relationship in an email to Runner’s World, writing that he was surprised to get a phone call from Rupp last fall and took a long time to consider whether to coach him.

The move marks a major change for Rupp, 33, who had been under Salazar’s guidance since Salazar spotted him playing soccer when he was a 14-year-old high school student in Portland, Oregon. Rupp went to college nearby at the University of Oregon and after graduating in 2009, he joined the Salazar-led Nike Oregon Project (NOP).

While still in college, Rupp made the 2008 U.S. Olympic team in the 10,000 meters, finishing 13th. At the 2012 Games in London, he won silver in the 10,000 meters behind his then-NOP teammate Mo Farah of Great Britain. In 2016, Rupp was the Olympic bronze medalist in the marathon. He also won the 2017 Chicago Marathon and the 2018 Prague Marathon, where he set his personal best of 2:06:07, second on the U.S. all-time list.

But Rupp was plagued by Achilles problems and Haglund’s deformity in his left foot, and he underwent major surgery in October 2018.

Last October, as Rupp was preparing to race Chicago again, his first race since the surgery, the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency announced news of Salazar’s ban. Salazar is appealing the decision, but in the meantime, he is not allowed to coach, and athletes who are in contact with him are subject to sanction. Nike executives shut down the Oregon Project a few days after the ban. Rupp made it to about 23 miles of the Chicago Marathon in 2019, before dropping out with a calf strain.

Rupp has never failed a drug test, and he is one of the most frequently tested American athletes.

He is also very private, staying off of social media and eschewing media interviews except around major marathons. Other athletes who had been training under Salazar had announced moves to new coaches, but Rupp had not, fueling speculation about his training and preparations for the Olympic Marathon Trials next month in Atlanta.

His move to Smith, who is based in Flagstaff, Arizona, is a radical shift away from the insular culture Salazar created at the NOP in Beaverton, Oregon.

Smith, 39, is a well-respected collegiate coach, having led the NAU men’s cross-country team to NCAA team titles in 2017 and 2018, and a runner-up finish in 2019. The women were 14th in 2019. Before NAU, he coached at Georgetown, his alma mater. In college, he earned All-American honors in cross country, and he later qualified for the Olympic marathon trials in 2007 (for the 2008 Games). He got his start in coaching working under legendary distance coach Jack Daniels.

(01/10/2020) Views: 548 ⚡AMP
by Sarah Lorge Butler
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Nike employees protested at the Beaverton, Ore. headquarters on Monday following the reopening of the building named after Alberto Salazar

On Monday, the day that the sportswear giant Nike reopened the Beaverton, Ore. headquarters building named after disgraced coach Alberto Salazar, Nike employees staged a protest regarding its mistreatment of women, and were threatened with termination if they spoke to the media.

The Wall Street Journal reports that, “A flier circulating among employees read, “Join us for a campus walk to celebrate what women bring to sport and to raise awareness of how Nike can support our female athletes and employees.”

There was another flier circulating ahead of the protest–this one was also distributed by Nike employees but had a different tone. It read, “No employee is permitted to speak to news media on any NIKE-related matter either on- or off-the-record, without prior approval from Nike Global Communications.” The policy continues, “Failure to comply with NIKE’s media policy could result in termination of employment.”

Nike spokesperson Greg Rossiter said to The Willamette Weekly that this cautionary flyer was not officially distributed by the company. “We respect and welcome employees’ feedback on matters that are important to them. The flier prepared by some employees was not officially distributed by Nike.”

The US Anti-Doping Agency banned Salazar in September for four years following a years-long investigation and secret arbitration case. The details appear in a BBC report and a statement by USADA outlining the specific charges, which include trafficking in testosterone (a banned substance), illegal methods and evidence-tampering at the Nike Oregon Project’s Beaverton, Oregon headquarters. Salazar is former coach to Mo Farah and Kara Goucher and current coach of marathoner Galen Rupp and the newly-crowned 10,000m champion Sifan Hassan, among others.

Nike shut down the NOP training group 11 days later. Salazar’s athletes have since found new coaches and training groups.

Following the dissolution of the NOP, American prodigy Mary Cain came forward and told her story about her experience with the group. According to Cain, the NOP’s “win at all costs” mentality involved Salazar and his assistant coaches (who are not named) pushing her to take birth control pills and diuretics to lose weight, weighing her and verbally abusing her in front of her teammates. Cain’s success on the track came at a huge price: she didn’t have her period for three years, which weakened her bone health so much that she endured five stress fractures. Her success dwindled, and when she left the program, nobody really knew why.

On Monday, protesters signs read, “We believe Mary.”

(12/10/2019) Views: 445 ⚡AMP
by Madeleine Kelly
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The most recent allegations echo reports by Kara Goucher about athletes being encouraged to take unnecessary medications to lose weight and improve performance

Britain’s Daily Mail reports that top UK athletes allege they were repeatedly encouraged by team doctors to have their thyroids checked, even when they exhibited no symptoms, leading to speculation about the use of thyroid medications to boost their performance.

The report echoes the report by the US Anti-Doping Agency (USADA) that former Nike Oregon Project Alberto Salazar inappropriately used thyroid medication with athletes.

This is only the latest in a series of issues plaguing British athletics. Head coach Neil Black, known to be a strong supporter of Salazar’s, resigned shortly after the ban was announced, in the midst of the World Championships, from which British athletes brought home a disappointing five medals.

UK Athletics also announced it would mount an investigation into why one of its top athletes, Sir Mo Farah, was encouraged to continue training with Salazar at the NOP in 2015 after Salazar came under investigation by USADA. And last week the newly appointed UKA chair, Zara Hyde Peters, was forced to step down before taking up her duties when it was discovered that her husband, who had been banned from teaching after an “inappropriate relationship” with a 15-year-old girl, had been allowed to coach at the club where Hyde Peters was vice chair.

Medications to improve thyroid function, including L-thyroxine and Cynomel, are not on WADA’s list of prohibited substances (and do not even require a Therapeutic Use Exemption, or TUE), though both USADA and UK Anti-Doping have called for them to be banned except in cases where a need is clearly demonstrated. Such medications, which can lead to serious heart issues when taken inappropriately, are known to aid weight loss, which is perceived to lead to faster times on the track. In the wake of being banned from athletics, Salazar has been the subject of numerous reports that he was obsessive about female athletes’ weight, publicly shaming those he thought were too heavy.

The report quotes athletes Jo Pavey and Matthew Yates, who say thyroid medications should be banned except in cases where they are necessary to maintain adequate thyroid function, and only with a TUE. The rate of hypothyroidism is estimated at one in 20 in females and one in 100 in males, and a physician consulted by the paper claimed that inappropriate use of thyroid medication can lead to serious heart issues. One athlete claims they were tested after a race and encouraged to visit their family doctor to confirm a suspicious result, but that a second test showed a normal result. In another case, an athlete who tested negative was encouraged to take another test after a hard workout, which can influence the result.

The report names Dr. Robert Chakraverty, chief medical officer for UK Athletics from 2013 to 2016 and his successor, Dr Noel Pollock, as having encouraged the tests.

(12/02/2019) Views: 453 ⚡AMP
by Anne Francis
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Jordan Hasay says she is going to be ready for the US Olympic Trials after making some changes

Jordan Hasay went into the Chicago Marathon on October 13 in excellent shape, hoping to make a run at the American record in the distance. But about two miles into the race, she tore her left hamstring. She limped past the 5K mark in 22 minutes before dropping out of the race.It was the bitter end of a tumultuous two weeks.

On September 30, her longtime coach, Alberto Salazar, was hit with a four-year ban from track and field for anti-doping violations. Hasay, 28, said she never witnessed anything improper in her time with Salazar and his team, the Nike Oregon Project. On October 11, Nike shut down the Oregon Project, leaving the athletes who had trained with Salazar to work out new coaching and training situations.

The timing of Hasay’s injury and the coaching upheaval were not ideal: American marathoners are preparing for the Olympic Marathon Trials on February 29, 2020 in Atlanta.

The upheaval has continued this month: On November 7, in an explosive opinion video in The New York Times, Mary Cain, a former teen prodigy who trained with Hasay and others at the Oregon Project, alleged she was “emotionally and physically abused” in her time with Salazar.

On a recent trip to Monaco, she formalized a relationship with Radcliffe to be her “mentor-coach.” Radcliffe held the world record in the women’s marathon, 2:15:25, for 16 years. The record fell last month to Brigid Kosgei, who ran 2:14:04, at the Chicago Marathon, where Hasay dropped out.

Hasay has long admired Radcliffe. As Hasay was training for her first marathon, Boston in 2017, her late mother used to call Hasay by the pet name “Paula.” Radcliffe and Hasay first met at the 2017 Chicago Marathon, where Hasay ran 2:20:57 and became the second-fastest American marathoner behind Deena Kastor. Hasay and Radcliffe have kept in touch since then.

Last week, together in Monaco, they sat down and mapped out Hasay’s training for the next 15 weeks until the Trials. Hasay said she believes she’s the first athlete to be coached by Radcliffe and specified that Radcliffe, and not her husband, Gary Lough, who oversees the training of Mo Farah, will be in charge.

Hasay will stay in California and communicate remotely with Radcliffe. “I’ve always really looked up to her as a role model,” Hasay said. “Since we first met two years ago in Chicago, we’ve kept in touch and she’s given me a lot of advice. She knows that I have had some very good coaches in the past. We’re not going to go in and change a bunch of things. At this point, I mainly need someone to hold me back and make sure I stay injury free. She’s such a kind person.”

After two weeks off from running after the Chicago Marathon, Hasay has returned to running almost pain free, she said, although the hamstring feels tight at faster speeds. On November 19, she did a hill workout.

Hasay said Nike staff were “incredibly supportive” of her as she considered new coaches, and they were open to her having a coach who didn’t have a relationship with the company if that is what she wanted. Radcliffe, though, was a Nike-sponsored athlete throughout her career and maintains a relationship with the company.

She is in the process of selling her home in Beaverton, Oregon, near Nike headquarters, and she will live with her father in Arroyo Grande, California, until she eventually buys a home in that area. She is more suited to the climate there, she said, where it is sunny and warm year-round, than the rainy winters of the Pacific Northwest. She also said the community has supported her since she began running at age 12. Being home “will add a lot of happiness,” she said.

When asked about Cain, Hasay said she knew her teammate was struggling during her 10 months training in Portland with the Oregon Project, but she didn’t know the extent of the problems.

“I was pretty shocked with the video,” Hasay said. “Obviously I feel really sad and I texted her and said I’m really sorry. That if I knew that it was that bad, if there was anything I could have done, I just apologize.”

Hasay said she and Cain were fairly close but she had “no idea” that Cain was cutting herself, as she said in the Times video. Cain also said Salazar was constantly trying to get her to lose weight to hit an arbitrary number, 114 pounds.

Hasay said she thought Cain’s youth and the intensity of the training and the program were a poor combination, but she expressed sympathy for both Cain and Salazar.

“It’s so sad, everyone was trying their best, though,” she said. “I really think you can’t point fingers and it’s really easy from the outside to kick Alberto under the bus. People make mistakes. He could have handled it at times differently. He really was doing his best. He wasn’t trying to cause any of the problems that she described. I sympathize with both sides.

“That’s why it’s hard—I haven’t commented on it—I don’t really have a side. I didn’t experience what she experienced, but I can see how it was so difficult. I think that her message is a good one, addressing these issues, they are important, I think it’s good overall that we’re looking at some of things.”

Hasay continued that when an athlete is still growing and going through puberty, getting to a certain weight is “difficult.” Older athletes on the team, she said, were able to push back in discussions with Salazar on weight.

“Alberto, if you ask me is he obsessed about weight? Yes, but he’s obsessed about everything,” she said. “He wanted to cut my hair [to reduce drag], he wanted me to wear a wetsuit in the Boston Marathon. It’s just every little detail is covered and weight happens to be one of those things.”

Salazar told Hasay she needed to gain weight at times. “He’s told me, ‘You don’t need to be this lean all year. I’d like you to go back up.’ We’ve had discussions. I think when you’re older and more experienced, you can speak up. It’s hard when she’s so young and still growing. It was just the whole situation wasn’t the right fit, unfortunately.”

(11/29/2019) Views: 1,282 ⚡AMP
by Runner’s World
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2020 US Olympic Trials Marathon

2020 US Olympic Trials Marathon

The 2020 US Olympic Trials for both men and women took place in Atlanta, Ga on Sunday Feb 29. Runners had to qualify by running certain standards beforehand. The trials are hosted by the Atlanta Track club. The course runs through the heart of Atlanta and past monuments from the 1996 Olympic Games Most countries around the world use a...

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Paula Radcliffe clarifies her coaching role with Jordan Hasay

It has been widely reported that Jordan Hasay has hired former marathon world record holder Paula Radcliffe as her coach or coach advisor.

This is not exactly accurate according to Radcliffe.

She told Athletics Illustrated, “I am happy to help Jordan out as well as I can. It’s not an official coaching role since I am not actually qualified to coach but primarily, I also don’t have the time to travel full time as a coach while my kids are still young and my priority.”

Hasay was formerly coached by Alberto Salazar of the Nike Oregon Project. Since Salazar has received a four-year coaching ban for apparent doping-related offences, his athletes have had to find new coaches.

Hasay, who is knowledgeable about training and what she needs to do to get ready for racing, has chosen Radcliffe more as an advisor.

“Jordan completely understands this, and my role is more of a mentor/advisor than a coach. She is very smart and already knows very well what works for her, and what doesn’t really work. She is also open to listening to ideas and changing things when she sees the sense behind it. A lot of the basis of what she already does is very good, and the changes so far are agreed by both of us and are very fluid.”

Hasay owns the second-fastest marathon by an American, all-time, behind only Deena Kastor, who ran the 2006 London Marathon in the time of 2:19:36. Hasay has gone as fast as 2:20:57, which the 28-year-old accomplished in Chicago two years ago.

Hasay dropped out of the 2019 Chicago Marathon due to a hamstring issue, which found her walking through the 5K mark in over 22 minutes. She was going for Kastor’s record in that race. She has recovered now.

“She came over to stay and we chatted and worked out a lot of things going forward. We feel that we can make this work long-distance with someone on the ground training with her in workouts and providing constant honest feedback between. Of course, in the future we will aim to do some training camps together, but it is very flexible right now,” added Radcliffe.

Radcliffe continues to reside in Monaco, France, while Hasay lives in Arroyo Grande, California.

Radcliffe owned the marathon world record until Oct this year. She set the record at 2:15:25 in London 2004. The record stood until the same Chicago race where Hasay dropped out. Kenyan Brigid Kosgei crossed the finish line in the remarkable time of 2:14:04.

Radcliffe has also run the fifth and seventh fastest marathon times.

Her connection to Hasay may be from her husband’s (Gary Lough) connection to Salazar as both have coached multi-time worlds and Olympic gold medallist Mo Farah, who trained with the Nike Oregon Project as did Hasay.

“I have known her for a while now and got to know her better in the last couple of weeks,” shared Radcliffe. “I am really impressed with her mental strength and ability to focus on what is important. We have similar outlooks on a lot of things, training, competition, and lifestyle-related and I admire her style of racing and think she still has a lot of progress to come. The main thing now is getting fully healthy and as fit as possible by the trials.”

On February 29, 2020, Americans will take to the streets of Atlanta, GA to compete in the 2020 Tokyo Olympic marathon trials.

(11/24/2019) Views: 1,251 ⚡AMP
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Kara Goucher is officially now an ultrarunner

Kara Goucher took a podium spot yesterday at her first 50K at The North Face Endurance Challenge Championships

Olympic marathon runner Kara Goucher has joined the ultramarathon club. On Saturday November 16, the former Nike athlete raced to an impressive third place finish at The North Face Endurance Challenge Championships 50K race in San Francisco in a time of 5:30:57. Goucher has found a new love and appreciation for the trails, especially in the wake of the suspension and allegations of abuse against Nike and her former coach, Alberto Salazar.

Goucher raced her first trail race back in August at the Leadville Trail Marathon, and has been moving up in distance ever since. The North Face 50K race gains 2,053 metres running through the Marin Headlands in the San Francisco Bay area. Goucher challenged her physical and mental toughness through Tennessee Valley, Muir Beach, and Pantoll Station, descending on the famous Dipsea trail. After crossing the Golden Gate Bridge, she finished the race enthralled and exhausted at Crissy Field.

Goucher shared the podium with Corinne Shalvoy in first place with a time of 5:00:10 and Jenny Comiskey in second with a time of 5:15:12. Nicholas Handel won the men’s 50K race in 3:58:11, Brian Gillis was second in 4:11:45, and Justin Grunewald was third in 4:15:39.

(11/23/2019) Views: 459 ⚡AMP
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Former marathon world record holder Paula Radcliffe will coach former Nike Oregon Project athlete Jordan Hasay

Jordan Hasay, 28, wrote on Instagram: “I’m excited and honored to have Paula Radcliffe as my coaching advisor.  “I look forward to working with Paula, whose expertise in being the former world record holder in the marathon is unparalleled.

“I have always looked up to Paula as a pioneer for what is possible in the marathon, and most importantly in being a kind and inspiring person in life. I hope to follow in her footsteps as I continue my journey in the sport.”

Radcliffe held the world record for the marathon for 16 years until it was broken by Kenyan Brigid Kosgei in Chicago this year, where Hasay failed to finish.

Nike ended its NOP training program for elite athletes in October after leading coach Alberto Salazar was banned by the US Anti-Doping Agency.

Salazar was given a four-year ban for doping offenses. His appeal against the ban is unlikely to begin before March at the Court of Arbitration for Sport.

(11/20/2019) Views: 585 ⚡AMP
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Tara Welling Shares Her Experiences as a Member of the Nike Oregon Project coached by Alberto Salazar

Two weeks ago, high performance coach/elite meet director Jonathan Marcus reached out to LetsRun.com to share his experiences with Alberto Salazar and the Nike Oregon Project. During the process of fact-checking that story, we contacted Tara Welling, who ran for the Oregon Project from 2012-14 (and later Marcus), who said she preferred to tell her story in her own words.

Throughout college, I dealt with an eating disorder, but it never spiraled out of control until the summer/fall of 2012, my first year with the Oregon Project. I was 23 years old and going through a tough personal time with my mom being diagnosed with breast cancer for the second time. She lived alone and I felt a sense of guilt that I should not be leaving the country to follow my running dreams with the Oregon Project. I joined the group in Europe as they prepared for the Olympic Games. I was the only female and didn’t feel like I had anyone I could really open up with and talk to.

Tension was high and I wanted to be a great runner, but also wanted to be home with my family during this difficult time. When I joined the Oregon Project, I was 5-foot-4 and weighed around 100 lbs. During our time in Font Romeu and London, I dropped to around 88 lbs, stemming from my levels of stress and depression.

Alberto never weighed me during this time, but my weight loss was very apparent. I later learned that a teammate brought it up to Alberto during our time in Font Romeu. It wasn’t until after the Olympics that Alberto first talked to me about it. He said that he would get me all the help I needed.

Alberto set weight goals for me: first 95 lbs, then 98 lbs, and I would be allowed to race the USATF 5k and 10k road champs that fall if I hit those numbers. Alberto was very concerned about my weight and took me to the store to get high-calorie, nutrient-dense foods that would fuel me for my runs and help me gain healthy weight. I was told that when we got back to the States, he would help me get connected with a nutritionist, therapist, and doctors to keep me on track and help me get healthy, and I did eventually meet with a nutritionist and a therapist.

What hasn’t been made public yet is that my visit to Dr. [Jeffrey] Brown, in September 2012, was related to this process of helping me get healthy, including numerous tests that were done. Initially, this was something very difficult for me to share with USADA [during their investigation of Salazar and Dr. Brown] as it required reopening wounds which are still challenging for me to talk about. Until the USADA investigation, these details are something I hadn’t talked to anyone else about, outside of my parents and Alberto.

I ended up racing the 5k & 10k champs that fall and eventually found a steady weight. A little while later I was up to ~105 lbs and had been following my lifting program per our strength coach Dave McHenry and Alberto. I was then told my arms were getting too muscular and I needed to lose a few pounds. I stopped lifting heavier weights on my upper body and was limited to only bodyweight exercises so I didn’t have to “carry extra weight.” 

Alberto constantly said I should look like Kara Goucher and Genzebe Dibaba. He also said I should be 100 lbs with a low body fat percentage, but muscular. It was confusing and I found it mentally difficult when I had to lose weight and look like other runners when I was not them. It was a constant comparison battle. I was often weighed with the underwater scale and had body measurements done via skinfold measurement. I was never weighed publicly or in front of teammates, but Alberto was always present.

In summary, I felt like weight was certainly a focus and embedded into the training process. I did witness Alberto weighing other athletes and criticizing their weight (both men and women). For me, it wasn’t always “less is better” in terms of weight. I had a target weight that Alberto felt was “healthy” but also ideal for performance and he wanted to do everything to help ensure I was at that (which was 100 pounds in his mind).

I do wish things would have been different. I wish I sought more advice apart from the doctors and therapists that Alberto had available. At the time, I felt like I didn’t have a choice and I had to prove to him that I was getting healthy and gaining weight. I didn’t feel like I had much of a say and it was a “do-as-you’re-told” type of culture. But at the time, I felt that Alberto had my best interests as an athlete in mind, and I had no reason not to trust him.

I left the Oregon Project in the winter of 2014. By that point, I was solely working with [NOP assistant] Pete Julian as I felt he better understood how I responded to training. I was told that if I wanted to remain with the Oregon Project, I had to win the USATF Club Cross Country Championships in December 2014 and prove that I could compete at a high level. I placed second that year in Bethlehem, Pa., and I was not re-signed.

After leaving the Oregon Project, I later found the fun in training again and somewhat let go of an ideal race weight. I lowered my PRs in the 1500, 3k, 5k, 10k, and won two national road titles (15k and half marathon) before competing at the Olympic Trials in the 5k and 10k in 2016. I’d be lying if I said I was 100% recovered from my eating disorder and tendencies, but I’ve found ways to manage it much better.

(11/19/2019) Views: 388 ⚡AMP
by Tara Weiling
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Another Nike Runner, Amy Yoder Begley says Coach Criticized Her Body

Less than a week after runners Mary Cain and Kara Goucher accused their former Nike Oregon Project coach, Alberto Salazar, of mental and physical abuse, another woman has come out with her own allegations.

Amy Yoder Begley was an Indiana state-champion runner before joining the Nike team in 2007. Within months, she was targeted by Salazar for her weight, as Cain was. According to the New York Times, Salazar demanded she be leaner, tried to control her relationships with her teammates, and complained about her laugh being annoying.

Yoder Begley says Salazar frequently flip-flopped in his criticism of her. “If I had a bad workout on a Tuesday, he would tell me I looked flabby and send me to get weighed,” she said. “Then, three days later, I would have a great workout, and he would say how lean I looked and tell me my husband was a lucky guy. I mean, really? My body changed in three days?”

Salazar accused Yoder Begley of not following her nutrition plan and made other comments about her body. “He was obsessed with her butt,” Goucher told the Times. “He would always talk about how it was hanging out of her shorts.”

The allegations were also confirmed by Steve Magness, Salazar’s assistant coach from 2011 to 2012. “I remember Salazar saying something like, ‘Her ass was hanging out of her uniform,’” he recalled to Sports Illustrated. “In that moment, he added, ‘I’m done with you. I’m tired of fighting this weight issue. We’re done.’ Amy countered by saying she hadn’t gained any weight. Alberto said he didn’t care what her weight said. ‘I know you’ve gotten bigger.’ There was this conversation on if her jean sizes had gone up because her butt was bigger. It was the most bizarre thing ever.”

Cain made similar allegations against Salazar, saying he had pressured her to maintain an extremely low weight, which caused her to break several bones, stop getting her period, and develop disordered eating that led to suicidal thoughts. Salazar addressed the allegations in a statement to Sports Illustrated:

My foremost goal as a coach was to promote athletic performance in a manner that supported the good health and well-being of all my athletes. On occasion, I may have made comments that were callous or insensitive over the course of years of helping my athletes through hard training. If any athlete was hurt by any comments that I have made, such an effect was entirely unintended, and I am sorry. I do dispute, however, the notion that any athlete suffered any abuse or gender discrimination while running for the Oregon Project.

Meanwhile, Nike has said an investigation into the accusations is underway.

(11/15/2019) Views: 584 ⚡AMP
by Marie Lodi
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Shalane Flanagan Was Not Surprised by Alberto Salazar’s Ban

One of America’s greatest marathoners has retired to become a coach and a television commentator, and she is speaking her mind about her sport and her top sponsor.

Shalane Flanagan, the four-time Olympian and winner of the New York City Marathon in 2017, called it quits on her running career in October — sort of.

Flanagan, who is 38 and has long trained with Nike’s Bowerman Track Club, is moving into coaching and television work. She will serve as the color analyst for ABC’s telecast of the New York City Marathon on Sunday, and once that is done she will return to Oregon to help coach the elite women who call themselves the “Bowerman Babes.”

There are few women coaching at the highest levels of running, even for female runners, and fewer who can still keep up with the athletes they train. That’s the kind of coach Flanagan plans to be as she moves into the next phase of her career.

“My dream is to become a personal pacer,” she said in a phone interview last week, during which she discussed her decision to hang up her racing shoes, Nike’s connection to the latest performance-enhancing drug scandal and whether, as an analyst, she will criticize runners she is coaching.

So now you are becoming a coach officially. Is that a role you have been playing unofficially for a while?

"Prior to the last year I had always looked at myself as the elder on the team. A little motherly, maybe a bit bossy and mentoring to younger athletes. But ever since I finished my last race in New York a year ago I have known I wanted to coach, and I’ve been observing and watching more with a coaching eye than as a teammate. The last year has been a kind of informal internship," she said.

Why aren’t there more female coaches at the highest levels in track and field?

"I never thought of it as a gender position or role, but having in the last year been in an environment and the arena of the coaching world, it has opened my eyes. At the U.S. championships, there are very few women coaches in the warm-up area, or even agents. It definitely feels strange."

Your sponsor, Nike, which funds your training group, worked closely with Alberto Salazar, who has been suspended from the sport for actions he took as coach of the Nike Oregon Project. Has the company done enough to make you feel that other Nike athletes will not be tainted by all of this?

"They are currently looking at the situation. I am guessing that they are a bit shocked to some degree and they are going to evaluate how they format these teams in the future. It’s a big liability for them. It’s very complicated. I’m proud of the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency and the efforts they put forth and their commitment to clean sport."

Were you surprised by what you read in the reports about the Oregon Project, that Nike’s chief executive, Mark Parker (who has since left that post), was kept in the loop through emails about experiments with performance-enhancing drugs?

"We train on the Nike campus, but we very much stick to our neck of the woods. We kind of quarantine ourselves. Once Jerry Schumacher broke off with Alberto in 2009, we’ve been very separated. That said, I’m surprised but not surprised by the situation that unfolded. I trained with Kara Goucher sometimes and I was privy to what she was going through, so I am not completely ignorant on the subject. As for Mark Parker’s interactions, I was unaware of those. (Goucher was one of the main whistle-blowers in the USADA investigation.)"

Will you run with the women you are coaching?

"I would love to pace someone like Shelby Houlihan to a 5K record attempt, or really any of our athletes. Being able to do that for them, that’s my motivation."

Did you ever have a coach like that?

"Jerry used to be able to hop in during some sessions. It made it so much more fun. When I was preparing for Boston I would make multiple trips and train on the course for multiple days. Jerry would get on and do workouts with me. I loved so much to have my coach give his body to help me attain my goals.

So what does Jerry say about you commenting on television about runners in your training group?

"Jerry would prefer I not commentate when I have athletes in races. I’m not sure I will change his mind on that aspect."

(11/11/2019) Views: 488 ⚡AMP
by Matthew Futterman
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Alberto Salazar Responds To Mary Cain's Allegations Of Abuse

In response to Mary Cain's accusations of physical and emotional abuse against her former coach, Alberto Salazar has provided a statement to The Oregonian's Ken Goe refuting Cain's claims.

“Mary’s father is a medical doctor, and both of her parents were deeply involved in her training, competition and health throughout the period she was coached by me. For example, Mary’s father consulted on medications and supplements Mary used during her time at the NOP. Neither of her parents, nor Mary, raised any of the issues that she now suggests occurred while I was coaching her. To be clear, I never encouraged her, or worse yet, shamed her, to maintain an unhealthy weight.”

Salazar writes: “Mary at times struggled to find and maintain her ideal performance and training weight."

Salazar told Goe that the Nike Oregon Project did employ a nutritionist and sports psychologist, contrary to what Cain has asserted.

Salazar also shared a text message that Cain sent him in April of this year.

“Thanks again so much for a great trip -- I’m excited to be working together again and I really want this. Haha got back to a chilly morning in NY and even skipped class just to prioritize training and recovery since that’s my No. 1.”

In a tweet thread this morning, Cain discussed her decision to reach out to Salazar then.Nike released their own statement on the matter, calling Cain's allegations "deeply troubling," while also pointing out that Cain had shown interest in rejoining NOP in April. The brand said they will launch an immediate investigation

 

(11/09/2019) Views: 429 ⚡AMP
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More disturbing news about coach Alberto Salazar of the Nike Oregon Project and what about Nike’s founder and billionaire Phil Knight

There has been much talk about Alberto Salazar and the Nike Oregon Project lately but let's not forget about mister NIKE Phil Knight.  

Just this week teenage super star Mary Cain said her career was ruined by Salazar and Nike. She was mentally abused by coach Salazar when she was part of the Nike Oregon Project. Nike knew what was going on.  

Let’s not forget who Nike is. Phil Knight built Nike into the giant company it is today. He was running things day to day at Nike when the Oregon Project was started in 2001. I am sure he pushed coach Salazar to do whatever it took for their athletes to win races.

Phil Knight ran over a lot of people and companies as he built Nike. Today he is worth over 31 billion dollars and growing. Nike stock is trading near an all time high. I am sure their $250 racing shoes must be helping. A shoe that many feel should be ban. I am sure they did not have it tested or looked at by the world’s governing body (IAAF) before they released it. They just put it on the market. That’s the Phil Knight way. That’s the Salazar way.

I am not a fan of either men. Nor am I a fan of Nike. They tired to destroy my magazine Runner’s World in the early 80’s because I would not rate their shoe number one. This is another story I have told before.  

That’s in the past and I have moved on. But things that have been going on more recently can’t be overlooked.

Nike’s power is overwhelming. They think they can do whatever they want. They are still even supporting Salazar, a long-time friend of Phil Knight. Yet Salazar has been banned for four years for doping violations. Should have been a lifetime ban.

How can we continue to turn our back on this? We can’t. We can’t just continue to buy their shoes, making Phil Knight and family even richer.

In response to Mary Cain’s allegations of forced weight loss and public shaming by former coach Alberto Salazar at a now-disbanded Nike-supported running program, Nike has started an investigation into the matter.

When asked for comment regarding Cain’s allegations Friday, a Nike spokesman issued the following statement: “These are deeply troubling allegations which have not been raised by Mary or her parents before. Mary was seeking to rejoin the Oregon Project and Alberto’s team as recently as April of this year and had not raised these concerns as part of that process. We take the allegations extremely seriously and will launch an immediate investigation to hear from former Oregon Project athletes. At Nike, we seek to always put the athlete at the center of everything we do, and these allegations are completely inconsistent with our values.”

Cain’s also claimed that Nike needs to change because it “controls all the top coaches, athletes, races and even the governing body,” and there is a need for more women to be in charge.Nike response seems rather vague to me.  What do you think we should do? Thanks Mary Cain for sharing your story. That was very brave. 

(11/08/2019) Views: 1,831 ⚡AMP
by Bob Anderson (Founder Runner’s World and My Best Runs)
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Mary Cain says that she Was the Fastest Girl in America, Until she Joined Nike

Mary Cain’s male coaches were convinced she had to get “thinner, and thinner, and thinner.” Then her body started breaking down.

At 17, Mary Cain was already a record-breaking phenom: the fastest girl in a generation.

While attending high school in Bronxville, New York, she set the high school freshman 1500-meter record of 4:17.84 in 2011. The teen went on to run 1:59.51 for 800 meters and 4:04.62 for 1500 meters outdoors, as well as 4:24:11 for one mile and 9:38.68 for two miles indoors, and set numerous high school records at the state and national level. 

Then in August 2013, at age 17, she became the youngest runner in history to make the 1500-meter final at the IAAF World Championships, which she finished 10th in.

In 2013, she was signed by the best track team in the world, Nike’s Oregon Project, run by its star coach Alberto Salazar.

Then everything collapsed. Her fall was just as spectacular as her rise.

Instead of becoming a symbol of girls’ unlimited potential in sports, Cain became yet another standout young athlete who got beaten down by a win-at-all-costs culture. Girls like Cain become damaged goods and fade away. We rarely hear what happened to them. We move on.

The problem is so common it affected the only other female athlete featured in the last Nike video ad Cain appeared in, the figure skater Gracie Gold. When the ad came out in 2014, like Cain, Gold was a prodigy considered talented enough to win a gold medal at the next Olympics. And, like Cain, Gold got caught in a system where she was compelled to become thinner and thinner. Gold developed disordered eating to the point of imagining taking her life.

Nike has come under fire in recent months for doping charges involving Salazar. He is now banned from the sport for four years, and his elite Nike team has been dismantled. In October, Nike’s chief executive resigned. (In an email, Salazar denied many of Cain’s claims, and said he had supported her health and welfare. Nike did not respond to a request for comment.)

The culture that created Salazar remains.

Kara Goucher, an Olympic distance runner who trained with the same program under Salazar until 2011, said she experienced a similar environment, with teammates weighed in front of one another.

“When you’re training in a program like this, you’re constantly reminded how lucky you are to be there, how anyone would want to be there, and it’s this weird feeling of, ‘Well, then, I can’t leave it. Who am I without it?’” Goucher said. “When someone proposes something you don’t want to do, whether it’s weight loss or drugs, you wonder, ‘Is this what it takes? Maybe it is, and I don’t want to have regrets.’ Your careers are so short. You are desperate. You want to capitalize on your career, but you’re not sure at what cost.”

She said that after being cooked meager meals by an assistant coach, she often had to eat more in the privacy of her condo room, nervous he would hear her open the wrappers of the energy bars she had there.

A big part of this problem is that women and girls are being forced to meet athletic standards that are based on how men and boys develop. If you try to make a girl fit a boy’s development timeline, her body is at risk of breaking down. That is what happened to Cain.

After months of dieting and frustration, Cain found herself choosing between training with the best team in the world, or potentially developing osteoporosis or even infertility. She lost her period for three years and broke five bones. She went from being a once-in-a-generation Olympic hopeful to having suicidal thoughts.

“America loves a good child prodigy story, and business is ready and waiting to exploit that story, especially when it comes to girls,” said Lauren Fleshman, who ran for Nike until 2012.

“When you have these kinds of good girls, girls who are good at following directions to the point of excelling, you’ll find a system that’s happy to take them. And it’s rife with abuse.”

We don’t typically hear from the casualties of these systems — the girls who tried to make their way in this system until their bodies broke down and they left the sport. It’s easier to focus on bright new stars, while forgetting about those who faded away. We fetishize the rising athletes, but we don’t protect them. And if they fail to pull off what we expect them to, we abandon them.

Mary Cain is 23, and her story certainly isn’t over. By speaking out, she’s making sure of that.

(11/07/2019) Views: 662 ⚡AMP
by Lindsay Crouse (New York Times)
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Nike announces Mark Parker will step down as CEO in 2020, He will be replaced by John Donahoe, a Nike board member and the CEO of ServiceNow

Nike said Tuesday afternoon its longtime CEO Mark Parker is stepping down, effective January of next year.

In a sign of the company’s focus on digital, he will be replaced by John Donahoe, a Nike board member and the CEO of ServiceNow. Donahoe was formerly the CEO of eBay and is chairman of the board at PayPal.

Nike shares seesawed in after-hours trading on the news and were last up less than 1%. ServiceNow shares tumbled more than 10%.

Parker, who has been Nike’s CEO since he took over from founder Phil Knight in 2006, will become the company’s executive chairman, according to the press release. He has worked with Nike for four decades, including as vice president of global footwear and co-president.

Parker said in an interview with CNBC’s Wilfred Frost that Donahoe is “no stranger” at Nike and decidedly is “the best choice to come in.” He said Donahoe should “enable this next level of growth,” digitally, for the company. And he added Nike’s board has spent “many months working on succession planning. ... This is not something that happens in a matter of weeks.”

He also said the decision wasn’t prompted by recent doping allegations connected to Nike’s Oregon Project.

At the end of September, Nike’s head running coach, Alberto Salazar, was banned amid doping allegations, which reportedly included ties back to Parker. The New York Times reviewed emails from the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency that showed Parker had been briefed on Salazar’s various experiments to use testosterone cream for track-and-field athletes.

In an email to employees at the time, Parker said: “Nike did not participate in any effort to systematically dope any runners ever; the very idea makes me sick.” He also said Nike looked into the allegations against Salazar and found no violations.

“We are staying very close to the situation,” Parker told CNBC on Tuesday. “We are in the midst of complex times.”

Nike’s announcement came the same day Under Armour announced its CEO Kevin Plank will be stepping down from the role on Jan. 1.

Under Parker’s leadership, Nike has seen its stock surge and sales climb. But the company has also faced its share of corporate culture scandals and backlash over controversial marketing campaigns.

In 2018, President Trevor Edwards, who many saw as Parker’s likely successor one day, retired.

The retirement came after complaints surfaced at Nike in March 2018, when a group of women presented Parker with a survey on gender discrimination. Edwards was blamed in the lawsuit for creating and exacerbating a “hostile work environment.” Parker responded by restructuring his leadership team, which included ousting Edwards.

Nike in 2018 admitted it failed in hiring and promoting women, and the company ousted at least 11 executives and announced raises for 7,000 employees after conducting an internal review of its pay practices. Parker apologized to employees at large in May.

But the hurdles haven’t stopped there.

Nike, spearheaded by Parker, has had a history of using controversial marketing campaigns to boost its brand.

In September 2018, it dropped a new ad campaign for the 30th anniversary of “Just Do It,” featuring former San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick. This pulled in a wave of responses, both for and against the commercial slot. But Nike’s “Dream Crazy” campaign ultimately won the “outstanding commercial” award at the Creative Arts Emmy Awards this year, marking the first time a Nike commercial had won the award since 2002.

(10/23/2019) Views: 445 ⚡AMP
by Lauren Thomas
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Brigid Kosgei Breaks the World Record at the 2019 Bank of America Chicago Marathon

Kenyan Brigid Kosgei shattered a 16-year-old world record in the women’s marathon by 81 seconds, winning the Chicago Marathon in 2:14:04 on Sunday.

Paula Radcliffe had held the record of 2:15:25 set at the 2003 London Marathon. Kenyan Mary Keitany holds the female-only record of 2:17:01 from the 2017 London Marathon. Both Kosgei and Radcliffe, the only women to break 2:17, ran with men in their record races.

Radcliffe’s record was the longest-standing for the men’s or women’s marathon of the last 50 years.

Kosgei did it one day after Eliud Kipchoge became the first person to run a sub-two-hour marathon in a non-record-eligible event in Vienna. She won by a gaping 6 minutes, 47 seconds over Ethiopian Ababel Yeshaneh.

Kosgei, who won Chicago in 2018 and the London Marathon in April, came in highly favored. The 25-year-old tuned up with the fastest half-marathon ever by a woman (by 23 seconds) on Sept. 8 on a non-record-eligible course.

“2:10 is possible,” Kosgei reportedly said after Sunday’s record.

Jordan Hasay, the top U.S. woman in the field, crossed 5km at a slow 22:20 and registered no further timings. Hasay, who was coached by Alberto Salazar before his ban in a U.S. Anti-Doping Agency case, is one of several women in contention for the three Olympic spots at the Feb. 29 trials in Atlanta.

Kenyan Lawrence Cherono won the men’s race by one second over Ethiopian Dejene Debela in 2:05:45.

Galen Rupp, reportedly dropped out in the final miles. He began fading from the lead pack before the 10-mile mark in his first race since last year’s Chicago Marathon. Rupp, who was also coached by Salazar, is coming back from Achilles surgery.

Mo Farah, the defending champion and four-time Olympic track gold medalist, finished eighth in 2:09:58. He also dropped from the leaders before the halfway point.

Kosgei raced her way to an early lead, breaking far away from her pack and continuing on pace to break not just a course but the woman’s world record. 

Kosgei has literally been unbeatable in 2019.

Kosgei wowed fans in 2017 with a second-place finish, but she made an even bigger splash last fall when she won the race with third-fastest time in Chicago's history.

(10/13/2019) Views: 701 ⚡AMP
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Bank of America Chicago Marathon

Bank of America Chicago Marathon

Running the Bank of America Chicago Marathon is the pinnacle of achievement for elite athletes and everyday runners alike. On race day, runners from all 50 states and more than 100 countries will set out to accomplish a personal dream by reaching the finish line in Grant Park. The Bank of America Chicago Marathon is known for its flat and...

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Galen Rupp says he is focused on running the Chicago marathon and not on the Suspension of his coach Alberto Salazar

Below is a statement provided by Rupp’s agent Ricky Simms to the Bank of America Chicago Marathon on behalf of Galen Rupp.

“First, as I’ve stated before, I am dedicated to clean sport and am completely against doping,” said Rupp.  “I have trained for over a decade to get where I am today and have worked extremely hard for every accomplishment in my running career.

“The panels’ decisions made it clear that neither I nor any Oregon Project athlete ever received any banned substance or were involved in any anti-doping rule violation.

“Since I first met and began working with Alberto 19 years ago, he has always put my health and well being first and has done the same for his other athletes.  I have personally seen him take great care to comply with the WADA Code and prevent any violations of any anti-doping rules.

“I understand he is appealing the decision and wish him success.  From my experience, he has always done his best for his athletes and the sport.

“Now, I am focused on the Chicago Marathon where I will be competing for the first time without my coach and friend.

“I will not comment further on this matter at this time.“

(10/12/2019) Views: 558 ⚡AMP
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Bank of America Chicago Marathon

Bank of America Chicago Marathon

Running the Bank of America Chicago Marathon is the pinnacle of achievement for elite athletes and everyday runners alike. On race day, runners from all 50 states and more than 100 countries will set out to accomplish a personal dream by reaching the finish line in Grant Park. The Bank of America Chicago Marathon is known for its flat and...

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Mo Farah defended his reputation as he was bombarded with questions about his former coach Alberto Salazar

British Olympic champion Mo Farah defended his reputation ahead of the Chicago Marathon Friday, and suggested there was an "agenda" against him.

Farah was bombarded with questions about his former coach Alberto Salazar who has been banned for doping violations.

The Brit, who has not been accused of any wrongdoing, worked from 2011 to 2017 with Salazar, who was given a four-year ban by the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency (USADA) on Sept. 30.

Speaking for the first time since Salazar was suspended, he responded angrily to questions about his former mentor, with whom he achieved some of his best performances.

"It's very disappointing to see you guys going at it again and again, and headlines, 'Farah, Farah, Farah'," he told a news conference.

"There is a clear agenda to this. I know where you are going with it. I have seen it with Raheem Sterling and Lewis Hamilton.

"I am probably one of the most tested athletes in the world. I get tested all the time and I'm happy to be tested anytime, anywhere and for my sample to be used to keep and freeze it.

"I'll just say there's no allegation against me. I've not done anything wrong.

"If I tell you guys and talk to you guys and be nice to you, you'll still be negative. If I don't talk to you, you'll still be negative.

"I'm aware I can't win. You're already made up your mind what you're going to write -- that is a fact."

Asked if he regretted staying with Salazar, particularly after a 2015 BBC documentary made a series of allegations against the American, Farah said he had confronted his coach.

"I was out in Birmingham [England] racing, I pulled out [of] the race in 2015," he added. "I wanted some answers and I flew to Portland to get some answers from Alberto.

"Talked to him face-to-face and he assured me at the time, 'These are just allegations. This is not true. There are no allegations against you, Mo.' He promised me. And that hasn't been true.

"This is not about Mo Farah, this is about Alberto Salazar. I am not Alberto. I was never given anything. I am not on testosterone or whatever it is.

"At the time I never saw any wrongdoing when I was there. This allegation is about Salazar, not Mo Farah."

(10/12/2019) Views: 628 ⚡AMP
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Bank of America Chicago Marathon

Bank of America Chicago Marathon

Running the Bank of America Chicago Marathon is the pinnacle of achievement for elite athletes and everyday runners alike. On race day, runners from all 50 states and more than 100 countries will set out to accomplish a personal dream by reaching the finish line in Grant Park. The Bank of America Chicago Marathon is known for its flat and...

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Nike has shut down the Oregon Project after Alberto Salazar was banned for four years for doping violations

Nike has shut down its elite Oregon Project (OP) long-distance running operation less than two weeks after head coach Alberto Salazar was banned for four years, a company spokesperson told CNN.

Salazar was banned for "multiple anti-doping rule violations" following a four-year investigation by the US Anti-Doping Agency (USADA).

Nike says it took the decision to wind down the OP as the situation has become an "unfair burden" on its athletes.

"Nike has always tried to put the athlete and their needs at the front of all of our decisions," a spokesperson told CNN.

"While the panel found there was no orchestrated doping, no finding that performance-enhancing drugs have ever been used on Oregon Project athletes and went out of its way to note Alberto's desire to follow all rules, ultimately Alberto can no longer coach while the appeal is pending.

"This situation including uninformed innuendo and unsubstantiated assertions has become an unfair burden for current OP athletes. That is exactly counter to the purpose of the team.

"We have therefore made the decision to wind down the Oregon Project to allow the athletes to focus on their training and competition needs. We will help all of our athletes in this transition as they choose the coaching set up that is right for them."

The Nike Oregon Project is a prolific training group that has produced some of the world's best athletes, including Mo Farah, who Salazar coached to four Olympic gold medals between 2011 and 2017.

Salazar, 61, and Jeffrey Brown, a consultant doctor for the NOP, were ruled to have trafficked testosterone, tampered with the doping control process and administered a banned intravenous infusion.

Nike told CNN it "will continue to support Alberto in his appeal," which has been taken to the Court of Arbitration for Sport in Switzerland.

”Maybe this confirms that NIKE really did know what was going on and in fact might have been the moving force pushing Salazar to do some things he otherwise would not have done,” wonders Bob Anderson.  “However NIKE is too big of a powerhouse for us to ever know the real story.  Why would they close this program and leave many elite runners out in the cold?”  

(10/11/2019) Views: 874 ⚡AMP
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Just don’t understand why Nike would close down this program unless there is a back story they want to “hide”? 10/11 11:35 am


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World 10,000 meters champion Sifan Hassan says her career has been thrown into uncertainty by Salazar ban

Sifan Hassan says her career has been thrown into uncertainty after her coach Alberto Salazar was handed a four-year ban.

The 61-year-old American was banned by the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) for “orchestrating and facilitating prohibited doping conduct” as head coach of the Nike Oregon Project (NOP), a camp designed primarily to develop U.S. endurance athletes.

Salazar has denied wrongdoing and vowed to appeal and Nike said it will stand by the coach. There has been no suggestion of wrongdoing by Hassan.

Ethiopian-born Hassan, who joined the NOP in 2016, told Dutch broadcaster NOS that she was stunned by the news.

“I am always clean. I always want to stay clean,” said the 26-year-old, who won the 10,000 meters at the world athletics championship on Saturday and will also run the 1,500 meters later in the competition.

“I never thought something went wrong in this training group. Never.”

She was not sure what would happen next.

“Next year we have the Olympics, where do I have to go then? Do I have to find a new coach? Do I have to do an other training? Do I have to meet other people?,” she said.

Ad Roskam, technical director of the Netherlands athletics federation, said that Hassan would be guided by the Dutch head coach Charles van Commenee for the rest of the competition.

“We first of all are here for the world championships. That has to run smoothly for the whole team,” he added.

In a statement issued earlier on Tuesday, Hassan said the USADA investigation was focused on the period before she joined the NOP and “has no relation to me.”

She said she was saddened that the announcement was made during the world championships.

(10/02/2019) Views: 694 ⚡AMP
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IAAF World Athletics Championships Doha

IAAF World Athletics Championships Doha

The seventeenth edition of the IAAF World Championships is scheduled to be held between 27 September and 6 October 2019 in Doha, Qatar at the renovated multi-purpose Khalifa International Stadium. Doha overcame bids from Eugene, USA, and Barcelona, Spain to be granted the rights to host the 2019 IAAF World Championships in Athletics. Having hosted the IAAF Diamond League, formerly...

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Five Nike Oregon Project athletes will be without their coach, Alberto Salazar for the remainder of the World Championships

Donovan Brazier (800m), Clayton Murphy (800m), Yomif Kejelcha (10,000m), Konstanze Klosterhalfen (1,500m and 5,000m) and Sifan Hassan (5,000m and 10,000m) all have races to run at the World Championships and will all be without their coach heading into those events.

The Nike Oregon Project athletes are all in medal contention, with Hassan claiming the 10,000m title on Saturday.

The US Anti-Doping Agency has banned Alberto Salazar, head coach of the Nike Oregon Project, for four years following a years-long investigation and secret arbitration case.

The details appear in a BBC report by journalist Mark Daly and a statement by USADA outlining the specific charges, which include trafficking in testosterone (a banned substance), illegal methods and evidence-tampering at the NOP’s Beaverton, Oregon headquarters.

Salazar is former coach to Mo Farah and Kara Goucher and current coach of marathoner Galen Rupp and the newly-crowned 10,000m champion Sifan Hassan, among others. The ban went into effect yesterday, September 30.

All five NOP athletes have had great seasons. Hassan (outdoor) and Kejelcha (indoor) both set mile world records, Murphy and Brazier have been Diamond League standouts and Klosterhalfen is currently ranked eighth in the world for the women’s 1,500m.

The IAAF has confirmed that Salazar’s World Championship accreditation has been deactivated. He’s not allowed in the Khalifa International Stadium or to have access to any of his athletes.

Both Brazier and Murphy run the 800m final this evening. The NOP athletes will now likely defer to their federations coaching staff for assistance before their races.

(10/01/2019) Views: 649 ⚡AMP
by Madeleine Kelly
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IAAF World Athletics Championships Doha

IAAF World Athletics Championships Doha

The seventeenth edition of the IAAF World Championships is scheduled to be held between 27 September and 6 October 2019 in Doha, Qatar at the renovated multi-purpose Khalifa International Stadium. Doha overcame bids from Eugene, USA, and Barcelona, Spain to be granted the rights to host the 2019 IAAF World Championships in Athletics. Having hosted the IAAF Diamond League, formerly...

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Alberto Salazar has been banned from coaching for four years beginning immediately for doping violations

Alberto Salazar, Nike Oregon Project coach and a Houston endocrinologist who had treated athletes belonging to the Portland-based training group, have been banned for four years for doping violations.

The decision was announced Monday by the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency and begins immediately. It is the result of a four-year investigation.

In a prepared statement, the USADA wrote that two, three-member arbitration panels had determined Salazar and Dr Jeffrey Brown should be banned for “orchestrating and facilitating prohibited doping conduct.”

The penalty stemmed from violations that included trafficking in testosterone, tampering with the doping control process and administering improper infusions of L-carnitine, a naturally occurring substance that converts fat into energy, the anti-doping agency said in a statement.

Salazar was notified in 2017 that he had violated doping rules, and he contested the findings by USADA, according to an anti-doping official familiar with the case who spoke on the condition of anonymity. The case was heard in arbitration last year, and the ban was imposed by an independent arbitration panel.

The British Broadcasting Corporation first reported the story.

Salazar is believed to be in Doha, Qatar, where a number of Oregon Project athletes are competing in the World Outdoor Track & Field Championships. Dutch distance runner Sifan Hassan of the Oregon Project won the world outdoor title in the women’s 5,000 meters and won the women’s 10,000 title on Saturday.

A former University of Oregon track star, Salazar has had a storied coaching career, guiding Olympic gold medalists Mo Farah and Matthew Centrowitz, as well as two-time Olympic medalist Galen Rupp.

Centrowitz and Farah left the Oregon Project before the ban was announced, Farah in 2017 and Centrowitz last year.

Salazar repeatedly has denied the charges.

(09/30/2019) Views: 973 ⚡AMP
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Galen Rupp is recovering well from his Achilles Tendon injury

Galen Rupp loves to run along the lakefront when he visits Chicago. He occasionally gets noticed as the city’s former marathon champion rather than just an exceptionally fast runner among those who pack the path on sunny days.

“It’s still a weird thing for people to know who you are,” Rupp told the Tribune on Thursday. “I love running along the lake. It’s literally one of the most gorgeous runs I could go on. The architecture of the city is so cool. The people are great here. Obviously I love running here.”

As he works to overcome a foot injury, Rupp logged some miles in the city this week to prepare for the Oct. 13 Chicago Marathon. He’ll have missed nearly a year of competitive marathoning when he returns to the course where he won in 2017.

“It was an easy decision for me to come back here,” Rupp said.

Rupp finished fifth in Chicago last year in 2 hours, 6 minutes, 21 seconds. His coach, Alberto Salazar, revealed two weeks later that Rupp had surgery after the race to fix a condition called Haglund’s deformity, a bone protrusion in his left heel that had worn on his Achilles tendon and partially tore it.

His doctor emphasized how serious the injury could be if Rupp didn’t follow his orders to ease off running. Taking it easy wasn’t easy for Rupp.

“(My doctor) said the only thing I could do wrong is be too aggressive,” he said. “It takes six months to heal. He knows (athletes are) going to try to push it. But he did a good job of scaring me enough. If it went bad, it could have been a career-ender for me. As simple as that.”

Rupp said he’s pleased with his recovery. He’s running about 85 miles per week.

While he recovered, he cross-trained about three hours a week with biking and pool workouts, including running on a water treadmill. He said the break from running was probably good for him from a mental standpoint.

A two-time Olympic medalist, Rupp also hopes to make a fourth U.S. Olympic team at the marathon trials in February in Atlanta. He has won three marathons (the Olympic trials in 2016, Chicago in 2017 and Prague in 2018) and finished second in Boston in 2017.

His time of 2:06:07 in Prague made him the the second-fastest U.S. marathoner of all time behind Khalid Khannouchi’s 2002 record of 2:05:38 in London.

Rupp will face a strong field in Chicago this fall.

(06/10/2019) Views: 920 ⚡AMP
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Bank of America Chicago Marathon

Bank of America Chicago Marathon

Running the Bank of America Chicago Marathon is the pinnacle of achievement for elite athletes and everyday runners alike. On race day, runners from all 50 states and more than 100 countries will set out to accomplish a personal dream by reaching the finish line in Grant Park. The Bank of America Chicago Marathon is known for its flat and...

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The Roma-Ostia Half Marathon was once again a fast race but with some surprises

The Roma-Ostia Half Marathon once again lived up to its reputation as being a fast race with a winning time of 01:00:17 by Ethiopian runner Guye Adola in the men’s race and 01:06:40 by Lonah Chemtai Salpeter, of Israel, in the highly anticipated women’s race.

Adola, winner of the 2017 edition of this competition, now in its 45th year, ran a smart race, tucking into the lead pack for most of the way until a final sprint to the finish, beating Kenian Geoffrey Yegon by 6 seconds in a race that saw 8,456 finishers run from Rome’s EUR neighbourhood to Ostia, the city’s honky tonk beach town.

In the women’s race, Salpeter, bettered her PB by 1:15, running a constant pace of 3:08/km, while the American Jordan Hasay, finished with a time of 01:11:06, well above the expected PB that everyone was hoping to see her run. At the presentation of elite runners on Saturday, Hasay seemed to want to run a fast race and, with an identical PB as Salpeter, everyone was hoping for an exciting and fast duel to the finish. But today wasn’t going to be that day for Hasay. During the race, the live tracking for Hasay did not work so there were no live split times for her at the 5km, 10km or 15 km markers and commentators never mentioned where she was during the race.

Only when she arrived at the finish line 4:26 after Salpeter (and 6th woman overall), was it obvious that she was way off a PB pace today. Hasay, part of the Nike Oregon Project and trained by Alberto Salazar, is set to run in the Boston Marathon on April 15. An Italian male runner who finished in a little over 1hr 7 minutes and who was at the start with Hasay, said she ran the first 2 kms very fast but then dropped off her PB pace and he passed her at km 3. A spokesperson for Hasay said after the race that Hasay did not have any injuries that affected her performance today, citing that after a year away from competition she was only a bit “race rusty.”

(03/10/2019) Views: 1,025 ⚡AMP
by Carla van Kampen reporting from Rome
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Roma Ostia Half Marathon

Roma Ostia Half Marathon

Italy's most popular half marathon, this road race is a popular event for runners of all abilities. The Roma-Ostia Half Marathon is an annual half marathon road running event which takes place in the spring in Rome, Italy. The course begins in the EUR district of the city and follows a direct south-easterly route to the finish point near the...

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Yomif Kejelcha smashed the Indoor Mile World Record clocking 3:47.01 in Boston Sunday

Yomif Kejelcha from Ethiopia broke the world indoor mile record when he clocked three minutes 47.01 seconds during an invitational meet in Boston on Sunday.

The 21-year-old smashed the 22-year-old record of 3:48.45 set by Morocco's Hicham El Guerrouj in 1997.

Kejelcha had come within one hundredth of a second of the record when he clocked 3:48.46 at the Millrose Games in New York last month.

The twice world indoor 3,000 meters champion was also targeting the indoor 1,500m record but narrowly missed it with a 3:31.25.

This makes Kejelcha, who is coached by Alberto Salazar, the third-fastest in the 1500m behind compatriot Samuel Tefera's February world record of 3:31.04 and El Guerrouj's 3:31.18

Eariler in the week Oregon live reported, “As promised, Nike Oregon Project coach Alberto Salazar has declared the NOP’s Yomif Kejelcha will be running for a world indoor record in the 1,500 meters -- and, possibly, the mile -- in the Bruce Lehane Invitational Mile Sunday at Boston University.

Salazar said making a world-record assault public puts pressure on the runner making the attempt, but also causes the runner to focus. And, he thinks, world-record attempts create the kind of publicity and attention the sport needs.

"If we’re going for a record in Boston, people are going to know," Salazar said then. “If we say we’re going for it, we’ll go for it.”

He told DyeStat’s Doug Binder on Wednesday that Kejeclha is fit and ready.

“He likes the 1,500 (meters), but I think the mile is more prestigious,” Salazar told Binder. “He’s going for the 1,500 record, and afterwards just hopes to maintain so he can get the mile as well.”

This is how the race in Boston unfolded as described by the IAAF. 

Kejelcha followed three different pacemakers for the opening laps and passed through 809m in 1:52. Worried the pace wasn't quick enough, he moved past the final pacemaker about two minutes into the race and was then out in front alone.

He was inside 2:51 with two laps remaining and kept up his swift pace for the last 400 metres. The clock had already ticked over to 3:31 by the time he passed the 1500m checkpoint, but he – and the eager fans – would have to wait until after the race to find out his official split. His immediate concern was reaching the finish line of the mile.

Kejelcha dug in deep and crossed the line in 3:47.01, taking 1.44 seconds off the previous world indoor record set by Hicham El Guerrouj in 1997. Moments later, his 1500m split was confirmed at 3:31.25, making him the third-fastest indoor performer in history behind Tefera and El Guerrouj.

Kejelcha's mile time is also an outright Ethiopian record, bettering the outdoor mark of 3:48.60 set by Aman Wote.

America's Johnny Gregorek (second photo)  finished second in 3:49.98, moving to sixth on the world indoor all-time list, just 0.09 shy of Bernard Lagat's North American indoor record.  This is the seventh best time by an American Indoor or outdoors according to LetsRun.  

(03/03/2019) Views: 1,170 ⚡AMP
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The blond super star Jordan Hasay is set to run the 45th Huawei Roma Ostia Half Marathon Sunday in Italy

Last year, Galen Rupp was the American star at the Huawei Roma Ostia Half Marathon. For the 45th edition, on March 10, 2019, twenty-seven-year-old Jordan Melissa Hasay, also as Rupp, grew up and settled under the technical direction of Alberto Salazar at the prestigious Nike Oregon will be on the starting line.

Jorday Hasay, undoubtedly, has sport in the DNA. Her father was a basketball star, while her mother Teresa, was a national swimmer in England.

Hasay placed third in the 2017 Boston Marathon in 2017, clocking 2:23:00, a record for an American athlete in the debut at the distance. Her best marathon time is 2:20:57.  

She has had some injury situations of late but she is now healthy and is looking forward to racing in Italy this coming weekend.  

(03/03/2019) Views: 1,225 ⚡AMP
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Roma Ostia Half Marathon

Roma Ostia Half Marathon

Italy's most popular half marathon, this road race is a popular event for runners of all abilities. The Roma-Ostia Half Marathon is an annual half marathon road running event which takes place in the spring in Rome, Italy. The course begins in the EUR district of the city and follows a direct south-easterly route to the finish point near the...

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America’s Best Distance Runner Galen Rupp is misunderstood by many other runners

Writing for Outside, Martin Fritz Huber ponders the lack of warmth some in the running community feel for two-time Olympic medalist Galen Rupp. Here is Huber's piece, which begins this way: "He's the best American runner in generation. Too bad nobody likes him." I have trouble right away with the premise because, ahem, I like him. Huber suggests Rupp's relative lack of popularity within the running community stems from media inaccessibility, a deficit of charisma and for being part of the Nike Oregon Project, which some believe pushes the boundaries of the rules.  The U.S. Anti-Doping Agency, for instance, has had the Oregon Project and coach Alberto Salazar under investigation for at least three years without uncovering enough evidence to make a case. Huber cites a LetsRun.com piece which consulted six experts, including Kara Goucher, Danny Mackey, Steve Magness and three coaches who chose not to be identified, about several topics leading into the Boston Marathon. Only one was quoted as being willing to root for Rupp in the race. At the risk of belaboring the obvious, asking Goucher, Mackey and Magness whether they would root for Rupp or the Oregon Project is like asking three Fenway Park season ticket-holders if they will root for the Yankees. I don't have trouble getting interviews with Rupp, perhaps because I haven't jumped to conclusions about the circumstantial and anecdotal allegations made against him and Salazar.  I find Rupp, who starred at Central Catholic and the University of Oregon, to be very smart, very focused, very competitive, very religious, a little shy, and not all that interested in seeing his name in headlines.  And, let's face it, he and Salazar have been used as punching bags, both in the British tabloid press and on the LetsRun message boards, where anybody with an uninformed opinion and/or an axe to grind can hide behind a pseudonym and bash away. Rupp can be warm when he doesn't feel threatened, and remains exceedingly popular at Hayward Field, where he starred as a Duck and has run regularly since turning pro. (Editor note: the stories we post here about Galen are the most popular.)  (05/19/2018) Views: 1,365 ⚡AMP
by Ken Goe/ Oregon Live
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Alberto Salazar still holds one American Road Record which he set in 1981

DID YOU KNOW: The American Road Record for 8K is 22:04.  It was set over 37 years ago.  On January 4, 1981 Alberto Salazar ran that time in Los Altos, California at the Runner's World Five Mile Invitational (5 miles is 154 feet longer than 8K). 

It is a distance that is not run very often but that is a long time for the record to still be on the books.  That same year Alberto won the New York City Marathon in 2:08:13 as he did the following year and 1980 as well. 

He also won Boston in 1982 in 2:08:52.  A race that would be known later as the "Duel In The Sun." 

Dick Beardsley and Alberto (photo) battled right up to the end.  Alberto was born in Cuba in 1958 and immigrated to the United States as a child with his family.  Salazar currently is the head coach of the Nike Oregon Project in Portland, Oregon.

(05/01/2018) Views: 3,203 ⚡AMP
by Bob Anderson
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Galen Rupp's preparation for Boston is the best ever says his coach Alberto Salazar

Galen Rupp finished second in his Boston Marathon debut last year despite not knowing if he would start the race two weeks prior.

This year is a different story says his coach Alberto Salazar, "This is as good as he's ever been prepared for a marathon. Anything can happen. You can have bad luck. But by far this is the best preparation he's ever had in terms of being really prepared," says Salazar.

Rupp, a two-time Olympic medalist, contests his fifth career marathon Monday. "Galen's been able to train much harder, run more miles and do more speedwork. It's gone really well, knock on wood. There have been no setbacks whatsoever," says Salazar.

Rupp can bolster his argument as the best U.S. distance runners of all time. He already has Olympic 10,000m and marathon medals. In his last marathon, Rupp became the first American-born male runner to win the Chicago Marathon in 35 years.

On Monday, he can become the first American-born male runner to win the Boston Marathon in 35 years. (Meb Keflezighi an Eritrean-born American runner won the 2014 Boston Marathon at the age of 38, the oldest winner in decades.)

(04/11/2018) Views: 3,044 ⚡AMP
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Run Faster by Adding Strength Training to Your Regimen like Mo Farah

A comprehensive research review finds that "neuromuscular" gains boost your speed and efficiency, in the wake of Mo Farah’s stunning double gold-medal performance at the 2012 London Olympics, running fans were eager to learn the secret. How had he gone from also-ran to champion after joining Alberto Salazar’s Nike training group in Oregon? One answer is that he hit the weight room with a vengeance. “Now he is not just a skinny guy, he’s a strong wiry guy,” Salazar told the Guardian’s Sean Ingle in 2013. “And he’s not gained more than a pound or two despite lifting heavy weights for power. People have always thought distance runners should lift light. Don’t you believe it.” (03/15/2018) Views: 1,623 ⚡AMP
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Is there a conflict of interest - Nike just dedicated a building to Sebastian Coe

Yesterday Nike dedicated a building on their Global Campus to Sebastian Coe. A little more than three years ago Coe severed his ties with Nike. The Nike Oregon Project is still part of an on going doping investigation, but the sportswear giant announced they would name a new building after the president of the IAAF on the same Nike Campus where Alberto Salazar coaches. In November 2015, Coe terminated his agreement as a $140,000-a-year ambassador for Nike in the face of accusations that a conflict of interest existed over the controversial award of the 2021 athletics World Championships to Eugene, Oregon. Maybe Nike named a building in his name because of what he did as an athlete? Sebastian Coe is a two time Olympic gold medalist (1,500 meters, 1980, 1984) and Olympic silver medalist (1980, 1984, silver medalist 800 meters). Very impressive and of course he is the current President of the IAAF. (03/13/2018) Views: 1,339 ⚡AMP
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A Chance Encounter with Rupp and Salazar on a Roman Holiday

Carla van Kampen posted this Saturday on FB, "Had a chance encounter with lifelong running idol, the great Alberto Salazar and his Olympic silver and bronze medal athlete Galen Rupp! Galen had just finished an easy three mile run and was doing exercises as Salazar showed up from his two mile run.

After a quick dash into their hotel to get a change of sneakers for Galen for his 100 meter strides, Salazar measured the distance by his steps and used a broken pair of glasses on the road as his marker.

Salazar told him to run them in 14 seconds.....and Galen did just that." ...The next day Galen ran the second fastest Half Marathon ever run by an American...59:47.

(03/12/2018) Views: 1,883 ⚡AMP
by Carla van Kampen (in Rome)
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Understanding the limits of the Human Body

Once we believed the secret to optimal performance came from the muscles, the lungs, the heart. Then, we were told that it’s all in our head, and we just need to push through the pain. The truth is that “the brain and the body are fundamentally intertwined,” writes Alex Hutchinson, a fitness journalist (with a doctorate in physics) who competed for the Canadian national team as a runner. To understand the limits of the human body, you have to consider them together... One of the biggest surprises came when I was looking into limits of hydration and heat. Alberto Salazar almost died a few times after races. People always say it was because he didn’t drink enough. After the 1982 Boston Marathon (Duel in the Sun) his body temperature was something like 88 degrees...In running, you breathe hard and you think that oxygen is a limiting factor...From a physiological perspective, it is not because I am out of oxygen, it’s because my carbon dioxide levels are too high and are triggering a warning system in me. But these guys are able to ignore the warning system and just keep going. (02/18/2018) Views: 1,433 ⚡AMP
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