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Marathon world record holder Eliud Kipchoge wants to reach out and inspire at least half the world’s population while trying to defend his title at next year’s Tokyo Olympics

The Kenyan long distance runner, who will be 36 by the time the Tokyo Games are held next year, has insisted that he wants to inspire “at least half the world” while resorting to a clean and dignified manner of competitive sports.

“My dream has always been to defend my marathon title. The London Marathon [to be held on April 26 and now postponed to October 4] was to be my preparation race towards Tokyo. I want to be there and be competitive and win with a good time,” Kipchoge told the International Olympic Committee (IOC) website on Wednesday.

“My goal is to reach more than three billion people through what I do. I need to inspire more and more people in this world so that we are in a much better place now than before,” he added.

Formerly a middle-distance runner while participating in the 5,000 metres as his pet event, Kipchoge has so far won 12 of the 13 marathons that he has entered in so far after switching to road running in 2012. He is the world record holder in the distance while clocking a time of 2:01.39 at the Berlin Marathon on September 16, 2018.

Often described as the “greatest marathoner of the modern era”, Kipchoge’s run broke the previous world record by 1 minute and 18 seconds.

On October 12, 2019, Kipchoge ran the marathon distance at a special sponsored event in Vienna, Austria, and achieved a new record time of 1:59:40. However, the run did not count as a new marathon record, as standard competition rules for pacing and fluids were not followed and also, the race was not an open event for other competitors.

But that doesn’t seem to deter the steely Kenyan runner. “I am calm and concentrated in my mind, and the body is well controlled whenever I am competing,” Kipchoge said. “I don’t run with my legs, but by my heart and mind.”

Faced with the uncertainty following the coronavirus pandemic, Kipchoge became philosophical and compared marathon running to life. “A marathon is like life. We get flat courses and we get downhill courses,” he added.

“But, right now we are faced with a hilly course. These are perhaps the hardest of times, and it is normal to struggle and go up the hill. But the main thing will be to stay positive at all times and let the heart and mind do the running.”

(05/21/2020) ⚡AMP
by Alaric Gomes
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What is going to happen to road racing as we know it? Bob Anderson thoughts on the situation. Could it be the end of big races?

The COVID-19 virus is deadly.  Already (as of May 17) at least 317,000 people worldwide have died from the virus.  This number is still growing by thousands each day.  By the end of this week most likely over 100,000 people in the US will have died from the Coronvirus (COVID-19).

Some people think this number has been inflated.  Others think it is low.  It is hard to really know the true facts.  In any case thousands of people have died from this new virus.  That's a fact.  

Some still feel this virus is no worse than the common flu.  Many of these ill informed people might be some of the ones who are continuing to spread the Cornavirus.  Many of these people don't wear face masks while in public nor practice social distancing.  These types of people could easily be those that end up infecting others.  And kill racing too.  More on this later.  

Doctors are saying this virus is much more contagious than the common flu and the death rate particularly for people aged 60 plus is high.  Much higher than the common flu.

This information is talked about daily in the news and there is no need to further exam that here.  The focus here is road racing and what impact this crisis is going to have on the sport.  

The My Best Runs (MBR) website only features and follow the best, most interesting and unique races in the world.  The site is currently following 837 races from all over the world.  

One thing the website does is list the leaderboard results from the races featured. The top four men and women and then age-group winners in ten year age-groups starting at age 40 are posted.  Stats are complied and compared among the races.  Nearly 90,000 unique people visited the site in February to look for races, follow races or read Running News Daily.  The traffic had doubled in a year.  That's over one million annually.  The growth of the site illustrates how road racing around the world was growing.  

Everything was set for a banner year.  The Boston Marathon had lined up another amazing field for their annual races that has been held every year since 1896 on Patriots Day.  The London marathon had confirmed that the world's top two marathoners would battle it out on the streets of London.  Maybe the first sub two hour marathon in a real race was going to happen? However both races were postponed and they hope to have races this fall.  Some feel that is not going to happen. 

It was in early February when people began talking about the Cornavirus.  A virus started in China.  But mostly people did not seem overly concerned. 

The month before (January 26) the Ujena Fit Club (UFC) Training Camp in Thika Kenya was opened.  The camp was not totally finished but the core group of runners had been selected, a time trial was staged and a traditional goat feed blessed the opening. A couple hundred people showed up for the affair.

A third floor of the club would be added in the following months to house guests interested in training with elite Kenyan runners.  The official grand opening was set for the end of May with a Double Road Race 15k race planned the same weekend.  Sponsored were being lined up for a world record attempt.    

The top runner in the club and part owner is Joel Maina Mwangi.  For the last couple of years prior he would travel to Italy in the spring and bring back enough prize money to take care of him and his family for the rest of the year.  

2020 was going to be his best year yet.  Joel was in top form being trained at his UFC Training Camp by coach Dennis.  His teammates pushed Joel in three-a-day workouts to higher limits.  

Joel left for Italy in early February right after the UFC Training Camp US partners Bob and Catherine Anderson had left after attending the opening.

Joel's first race was in Verona, Italy Feb 16.  He won that race and clocked 1:00:40 for the half marathon, a personal best.  His plan was to race each weekend after that and then run the Rome Half Marathon set for March 8.  This point to point course is fast.  Galen Rupp had won there a couple of years back breaking an hour in the process.  Joel's plan was to win, break an hour for the first time and bring home the big prize purse.

This didn't happen as Italy started closing down their country to battle COVID-19.  It was going out of control.  Joel luckily left Italy March 7th for his home in Thika, Kenya while he could still travel. But not with the over $20k(US) he was planning on bringing back home with him.

The world was shutting down.  Whole countries were locking down.  The last race featured by MBR to take place was the LA Marathon March 8 along with several others held that same weekend.  There has not been a significant race held any place in the world since March 8.  California ordered everyone to Shelter in Place starting March 17.  Other states and countries followed.  

Every race scheduled for April or May and featured on the MBR website were either canceled or postponed.  Most races also in June and July have been canceled or postponed as well.  The Tokyo Olympics were postponed for a year.  The Berlin marathon in September was canceled (but they are trying to workout a new date), Western States 100, the Camrades Marathon, the Dipsea, and so many other well established races were cancelled.   

Pippa Stevens a CNBC writer posted, "As running has grown in popularity, local clubs have popped up around the country, and there are now roughly 35,000 races each year in the U.S. alone, data from industry trade group Running USA shows.

"More than 44 million people in the U.S. identify as a runner, and 17.6 million people crossed the finish line in U.S. races in 2019.

"With all races cancelled for the time being, billions of dollars are at stake. The biggest marathons – from Boston to Chicago to London to Tokyo – inject hundreds of millions of dollars into local economies. The most recent analysis of the TCS New York City Marathon, for example, found that the race’s economic impact topped $400 million."

A lot is at stake.  But race directors need to know that even if cities allow them to hold their races, not everyone will automatically be there on the starting line.  

Dan Anderson wrote, "I am having a major motivational problem with my running!  For the first time in my running career (almost 55 years) I have no races to train for.  I really miss them.  But I will not run in a race until a vaccine is available.  Being 68 years old with several preexisting risk factors it is too dangerous!  Hopefully within a year a vaccine will be available.  Until then I will push myself to get out and run."

Racing is addictive and so many people around the world love it. Once things are figured out and it is safe again many will be there on the starting line.                                                                                       

Sam Tada who lives in Japan wrote, "Racing helped me so many times in my life and I miss it.  

"Racing gives us opportunity of challenge, growth, and communication.  It makes us happy and healthy mentally and physically.  I love racing and miss it. 

"We are facing difficult time right now but once this health concern is gone I think we will be able to enjoy racing more since we understand how racing is important for us.   

"I am looking forward to racing again and I am trying to do my best effort to stop the spread of this virus."

There are a lot of things that will need to be addressed.  Here are some ideas I have.  Maybe at least for awhile or forever all runners will need to show up wearing a Face Mask.

Then they walk into a screening booth and have their temperature checked.  If they pass, they walk into another booth were they are sprayed with a solution (totally safe) that would kill any viruses they may have on their clothing, shoes or body.  At this point they are still wearing their face mask.  And they continue to wear their face mask until about a quarter mile out or until there is spacing between them and others.  Once they finish they put back on their Face Mask until they are back in their car.

Of course everyone would have to sign a Waiver saying that if they contract COVID-19 at the race and if they die later their family could not sue the race or city.  No idea how porta potties, water stops or handing out medals at the end could work out other than eliminating them. 

I see two problems with these ideas. Remember those people that are already not following the rules?  Do you think they would show up at a race wearing a Face Mask?  And we also know that signing a waiver does not restrict a family from sueing everyone if a member of their family dies from COVID-19 which they determined they got at a race.  Even before this crisis a husband ran a half marathon in San Francisco and died at the finish line.  He had signed a waiver but his wife sued everyone and won lots of money.  The race Director got out of the business (sadly) yet he did nothing wrong from the inside information I know.  

There is not a clear answer about the future of road racing.  No matter how careful race directors, cities and charities (because they are big losers too)  work together it would only take a few jerks to ruin it all.

So what race is going to be the first one back?  Any day now the Old Dominion 100 Miler set for June 8th will be making a decision.  They posted on their website, "The Old Dominion Run is still working all options in an attempt to have the run this year.

"We are working with numerous authorities in our area to assist in providing a good and safe race day experience for everyone involved. The governor of Virginia has gone to phase one in our area and our authorities are reviewing our plan vs the restrictions. 

"Currently, part of our proposal has had to include a limit on our field to 50% for any hopes for us to proceed. We currently have 55 entrants and will not immediately be taking more from the wait list.

"Responses from the authorities will be a major part of our decision on 17 May. If the race proceeds, entries will not be more than 55. The waitlist will remain active," posted by Ray, Wynne and Race Management.

On June 20th the Shelter Island 10k (first photo) is scheduled to take place in Shelter Island New York.  It is a big race and there are always fast winning times.  We have contacted the race director and have not gotten a comment from them.  There is no mention on their website about COVID-19.  We are assuming they are trying to make it happen but what is their plan?  

A couple of other races in late June are also trying to figure something out.  Like the Halifax Marathon (second photo) has not torn in the towel just yet but are closely monitoring the situation as noted on their website.  

Another one of the 837 races being followed by MBR wrote, "Our race was cancelled for this year, fingered crossed we will be back in 2021, april 17th.

"Our race of 2500 might look a bit different in 2021, 10 wave starts of 250 each? Each 10, 15 to 20 minutes apart? Lots of questions like what will aid stations look like and function? Maybe results may go to chip times, or no awards at all? Things will be different.

"The big question now is how we will all deal with the city, county and state mandates and permits. In the past, permits were a pretty easy process, no mass gatherings limitations.

"Locally I believe we will have some small events, mostly if not all on our trail system which limits events to 200 participants. A couple are still moving forward with fall dates, hopefully they will happen. Currently we have a limit for runs set by our city, set at 250 runners with wave starts, with really no other details. In the past road events have had much bigger fields. Going forward if the social distancing stays part of the rules it will be very hard to stage a very large running event.

"Events may look like some ultrarunning events, with very little or no finish line parties, just finish, quick drink and maybe food and head home.

"Runners and organizations will adapt to the rules and events will happen," wrote Brian at Race to Robie Creek.

Hopefully the game changer is going to be that a vaccine is created and COVID-19 is wiped off the face of the earth.  Just as long as everyone gets vaccinated and don't continue to think that COVID-19 is no worse than the common flu. This could solve most everything as long as cities who issue permits think it is enough.  

It sure would be nice to get back to things as they were.  Or at least close to it.  But many of us will continue to wash our hands more often, wear a face masks at times and not go out if they are not feeling well.  Road racing is just too important to so many people. 

(05/17/2020) ⚡AMP
by Bob Anderson
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Old Dominion One Day 100 Mile

Old Dominion One Day 100 Mile

(May 19, 2020) Thank you all so much for your patience as we were waiting to hear back on all of our approvals today. However, we are very sad to say the race is cancelled for 2020 due to COVID-19. We did not receive all of the approvals needed from our area authorities. See you in 2021. The Old Dominion...

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Running on empty: Coronavirus has changed the course for races big and small

The coronavirus pandemic has crippled the sports landscape. Leagues from the NBA all the way down to Little League Baseball have paused or canceled seasons.

In response to various stay-at-home orders that vary from state to state, people have been encouraged to exercise -- safely and while socially distancing. To run, walk and bike. Maybe, now with the idea, to one day compete in a 5K or a 10K race, maybe even a marathon.

When life resumes, whenever that is, those opportunities will be different and, in the case of some road races, not even there.

The racing organizations, big and small, that stage those events are having to grapple with postponements and cancellations to a point where they may not be able to ever come back at full strength.

Many of the world's largest marathons have already been impacted by the pandemic -- the Boston Marathon was postponed until September, the London Marathon until October and the Berlin Marathon, which had been scheduled for Oct. 24, has already been canceled.

Events that lead to mass gatherings, such as sports and concerts, are expected to be among the last to return even as the U.S. and the world look to reopen various businesses.

In the world of running, it is the smaller races -- from 5Ks and 10Ks to half marathons and marathons, many operated by local event organizers -- that are under financial stress.

In 2019, Running USA, an industry trade group, tracked more than 21,000 road races, which collected roughly $267 million in fees from more than 17.6 million registered runners.

Christine Bowen, vice president of programming partnerships and operations at Running USA, told ESPN.com that new estimates as of mid-March showed roughly 7,500 road races have been canceled so far into 2020, and thousands have been canceled since. That's more than 1.2 million participants who are left in limbo, she said -- and with more cancellations likely to come. In addition, race registrations nationwide are showing a 95 percent decline.

There's also the loss of raising money for charity, Bowen noted. Roughly 79 percent of road races are associated with at least one charity partner.

Fewer people signing up for races is one thing. The industry is also dealing with runners who are asking for their money back. While the average cost to enter a race is $70 to $79 per entry, many smaller events don't offer refunds, as those registration revenues are spent in advance for race security, staff, shirts, bibs, medals, water, snacks and other logistics -- sunk costs even if the races are not held.

"At the moment, I am not looking to register for any further road races as we have no idea what will happen," Samantha Music, a tax assistant who lives in Connecticut, said. "It is rather discouraging to continue to train even though the races are not happening."

Music had signed up to run seven races so far this year, with collective registration costs of more than $1,200. So far, six of the seven have been officially canceled, and a majority of the races, she said, are non-refundable.

However, two of the races did offer deferment for a non-complimentary guaranteed race entry for 2021 or a full refund and no-entry option for 2021. This means, if the race is lottery-based, she would need to reapply sometime next year.

"I am absolutely feeling stressed, as well as depressed about all the cancellations and losing money on the races that are being deferred to next year," Music said. "I understand that the race organizers have to pay for everything they ordered, but it doesn't suck any less to have to pay for a race again."

"I am absolutely feeling stressed, as well as depressed about all the cancelations and losing money on the races that are being deferred to next year."

Samanta Music, runner from Connecticut

The tune is a little different for Matt Becker, who is an applied mathematician at the Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory in Maryland. Becker, who is new to the road race scene, and his wife had signed up for six races between the two of them so far in 2020. Five of them have been canceled or postponed, and of those five, four offered deferred payments for next year, or whenever the rescheduled race will take place.

"I think, on the whole, the race organizers are doing their best to accommodate difficult circumstances," Becker said. "Once it is safe to do so, I don't think I'll have any different approach to signing up for races in the future."

As part of its guidance to race directors, Running USA issued this statement:

"Negative comments about refunds, chargebacks and greed are swirling. The running industry especially is not a faceless group. ... it may be helpful to share with participants that many expenses are incurred months ahead of the event and the option of refunds really is not straightforward or always possible. Remind runners of your commitment to the community."

But will there be races for the community in the future?

Bowen said that though the average running organization employs eight full-time employees, there are contractors working with event management companies who also rely on the events as their main source of income.

According to the Endurance Sports Coalition, hundreds of thousands jobs are in jeopardy in that space. The coalition is made up of more than 475 endurance sports groups seeking relief from congress. The endurance sports industry -- which also includes events such as Tough Mudder and Ironman triathlons -- is a $3 billion industry that provides more than 500,000 jobs.

The coalition includes bigger races, like the Boston Marathon and Rock 'n' Roll marathon series, that will always have people clamoring to run them. It's the medium to smaller-sized races, and the companies that put them on, that are facing the direst of straits.

J.T. Service is the co-founder and CEO of Soul Focus Sports, an event management company in the San Francisco Bay Area that helps to put on a handful of road races.

Run Local Bay Area is a client of Soul Focus Sports, which puts on races including the San Jose Shamrock Run, the Silicon Valley Half Marathon and the Across the Bay 12K. The Silicon Valley Half Marathon -- which did not occur as planned on April 5 -- would have usually attracted between 3,000 and 5,000 runners.

"I almost want people to kind of think about us as local businesses," J.T. Service said. "There's this huge push of support your local business or support your corner pizza shop where you normally would get pizza. I think there needs to be this element of seeing the race, your local fundraising charity event, as that local business that needs just as much support now -- maybe more now than ever -- for the long term good of the community, so they can come back and open their doors and open their starting lines to runners when this thing is cleared up."

Through June, six races have been canceled under the Soul Focus Sports umbrella in the Bay Area. Service said they have lost "a few hundred thousand [dollars] in revenue" and that affects roughly a dozen event staffers.

To make up for lost races, runners have been encouraged to participate in virtual runs instead -- a way to both encourage running and return some value.

For many of these virtual events, runners can run the scheduled "race" distance when they want, where they want -- from a local trail to a treadmill -- and can then log their time results on the event's website to compare against others, and have their medals, race shirts and other "swag" shipped to them.

In addition to its Walt Disney World Marathon and other events, runDisney has been holding virtual races for five years. The Rock 'n' Roll marathon series and IRONMAN triathlon series -- both part of the Wanda Sports Group -- have begun offering competitive virtual events, and other race directors have taken creative approaches to keep runners active.

The Hartford Marathon Foundation, which organizes more than 30 annual races throughout New England, launched the "WeRunCT" virtual challenge to encourage people to collectively run the equivalent of every square mile of Connecticut (5,018 miles). Within three weeks, more than 1,250 participants ran the state of Connecticut 14 times over -- covering the square mileage of all of New England, approximately 71,500 miles.

"We understand how important it is for us to provide our running community with encouragement to keep active and maintain a healthy outlet to help manage stress during this unprecedented time," HMF CEO Beth Shluger said in a statement. "While we can't hold events and gather together, we're committed to providing ways for people to experience some of the enjoyment of racing through virtual events and challenges."

Bowen said there is a glass-half-full approach.

"I think that mental health area is really going to look more at [running]," she said. "I wouldn't be surprised if you start seeing companies sort of corporate wellness programs to say to their employees, 'Maybe sign up for a virtual race in the office because we're all working from home right now.' That's something to keep people engaged."

Virtual races can be positive, she said: "Right now, I will stay for sure, it's given companies an opportunity to be very creative in how they work with their runners and their sponsors."

Those virtual events could continue to be a source of revenue for race directors, and alternative social distancing options for runners. And Service, from Soul Focus Sports, sees another silver lining: Many people are taking up running while seeking exercise during the pandemic, and all those outside running every day could fall in love with the sport -- and could stick around for a while, too.

"So I see an opportunity for this industry, and that's from local specialty shoe shops to races -- but we have to be almost leaders, to the point of saying: Running is going to help bring this country back," Service said. "Why wouldn't be this our fuel or a thing that brings people back together?

"They're resilient people."

(05/16/2020) ⚡AMP
by ESPN
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The 2020 Dublin Marathon is expected to be cancelled

The Board of Directors met last night to discuss the future of the race which was scheduled for Sunday, October 25. It would have been the 41st running of the event which has been sold out for months.

A decision on the future of the event could not be delayed any longer as the merchandise for this year's race needs to be ordered in the next couple of weeks.

But given the current rules on social distancing which are likely to remain in place for the foreseeable future, running an event which is likely to have over 20,000 participants and a quarter of a million spectators, is not practical.

Medical experts have suggested that the risk of participants in a marathon passing on the virus to fellow runners during the race itself is very low. However, it would still be regarded as unsafe due to the congregation of the runners at the start at the start of the race.

The last big city marathon to take place prior to the worldwide Covid 19 shutdown as the Tokyo marathon in which only the elite runners were allowed participate.

All the other major spring marathons such as Boston and London were postponed until the autumn.

Major question marks remain over whether they will now go ahead as the Berlin marathon which was due to take place in September has already been cancelled. The dublin Marathon, which was the brainchild of Louis Hogan - then a radio producer with RTE - and the late Noel Carroll was first held in 1980 on the October Bank Holiday Monday.

After an initial surge in interest the event almost folded during the 1990s when participation levels dropped to below 3,000.

However, under the leadership of current race director Jim Aughney the event was revived and now attracts over 20,000 entries annually.

 

(05/15/2020) ⚡AMP
by Sean McGoldrick
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KBC Dublin Marathon

KBC Dublin Marathon

The KBC Dublin Marathon, which is run through the historic Georgian streets of Dublin, Ireland's largest and capital city.The course is largely flat and is a single lap, starting and finishing close to the City Centre. Conditions formarathon running are ideal....

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Berlin Marathon´s organizers have said they need more time to examine their options as discussions continue on whether the race will take place in 2020

SCC Events had previously announced that the World Marathon Major would not take place on its original September 27 date, leading to many publications reporting the race as cancelled.

This was due to restrictions put in place by the local Government, which placed a ban on gatherings of more than 5,000 people until October 24.

A decision is still to be made by SCC Events on this year's race, however, with further information to be released by the end of June at the latest.

Many major marathons around the world have faced a similar fate with the races in Boston and London, which are also part of the World Marathon Majors, postponed to September and October respectively. 

"Due to the size of the event and the large number of people involved, we need a little more time to examine different options for this implementation of the further procedure," SCC said.

"In addition, at the moment we cannot work on the upcoming tasks in full team strength; like many others, the SCC Events team is currently on short-time work.

"Nevertheless, as usual, we put all the available energy into this process and will contact you by the end of June at the latest with details on the further procedure relating to the BMW Berlin Marathon. 

"If we have new information beforehand, we will of course let you know immediately."

In Germany, there are more than 172,000 confirmed cases of COVID-19 nationwide, resulting in the deaths of more than 7,600 people.

The 2018 edition of the race saw Kenya's Eliud Kipchoge smash the men's marathon world record in a time of 2 hours 1min 39sec.

This was nearly bettered by Ethiopia's Kenenisa Bekele last year, who was two seconds short on his way to victory.

(05/13/2020) ⚡AMP
by Michael Houston
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BMW Berlin Marathon

BMW Berlin Marathon

2020 Marathon has been cancelled. The story of the BERLIN-MARATHON is a story of the development of road running. When the first BERLIN-MARATHON was started on 13th October 1974 on a minor road next to the stadium of the organisers‘ club SC Charlottenburg Berlin 286 athletes had entered. The first winners were runners from Berlin: Günter Hallas (2:44:53), who...

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London Marathon Counts on Eliud Kipchoge

Where will the next marathon world record be set? This autumn, the London Marathon is aiming for the duel between top stars Eliud Kipchoge and Kenenisa Bekele. Kipchoges unofficial world record of less than two hours should not be in danger. However, the Berlin Marathon, notorious for world records, cannot take place as planned.

The Corona crisis has also had far-reaching consequences for the marathon scene. The London Marathon, for example, had to be postponed from 26 April until 4 October.

However, it is still unclear whether the event will also be open to amateur runners or if only professionals like world record holder Eliud Kipchoge are allowed to compete. According to "Athletics International", the organizers have asked all athletes originally invited for April to come back for the fall date. This includes the Kenyan Kipchoge.

He holds the official marathon world record of 2:01:39 hours (Berlin Marathon 2018) as well as the unofficial world record of 1:59:40 hours at the INEOS 1:59 Challenge in Vienna 2019 under laboratory conditions with constantly changing pacemakers and drinks and food available at all times.

Kenenisa Bekele, who missed the official world record at the 2019 Berlin Marathon by only two seconds, is also expected to compete in London. A direct duel between the two top runners could come to happen in October. For Bekele, an improvement of the official world record could be possible. 

"With good weather conditions and if we both worked together on the pace, a time in the range of the world record might have been possible", Athletics International quotes hin speaking about the cancelled event in April.

(05/12/2020) ⚡AMP
by Martin Jahns
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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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Kenya´s Vincent Kipchumba can´t wait to run against world’s best in London

The postponement of the London Marathon from April to October due to the coronavirus pandemic hit Vincent Kipchumba hard.

Kipchumba, who is the reigning Amsterdam Marathon champion, was delighted to have been included in the elite men’s list and had been following a program that he hoped would give him a chance to challenge for glory in Europe’s capital center.

“It was also going to give me a chance to make some money. When I heard it was postponed I felt traumatised," said Kipchumba.

“At least the race was postponed to October but we are still not sure if the virus will have been contained by then. It’s my prayer that things get back to normal because athletics is my career, and to many others out there.”

Kipchumba, had been training in Kapsabet, Nandi County under the watchful eye of his coach Claudio Berardelli. He said that even though the London race had been pushed back by six months it will not diminish his desire to make his debut in a Majors race.

“When I was informed that I will be competing in London Marathon, I was happy because this was a dream come true for me. I have been eyeing a place in one of the biggest marathons in the world,” said Kipchumba.

He also said that he will be privileged to compete with some of the best athletes in the world over the distance.

“Competing with the world marathon record holder Eliud Kipchoge and Berlin Marathon champion Kenenisa Bekele is something I even didn’t think will be possible but here we are waiting for the big day,” said Kipchumba.

However, just like many other elite athletes, the coronavirus has played havoc with his schedule.

He was due to participate in the Roma Ostia Half Marathon, as part of his build up for London, but the race was cancelled.

(05/11/2020) ⚡AMP
by Bernard Rotich
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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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World marathon champion Geoffrey Kirui has high hope to win the rescheduled Boston Marathon

World marathon champion Geoffrey Kirui says he briefly lost interest in training after organizers of the Boston marathon pushed the event back to September.

However, he has learned to live with the situation and has slowly resumed training hoping he will be fit to return to competition in September and prove his critics wrong to win another major marathon race.

Kirui, who won gold in the men's marathon at the 2017 World Championships in Athletics in London, has experienced torrid performances since.

He failed in his bid to win in Boston last year settling for fifth place at 2:08:55 and finished 14th at the World Championships in Doha, Qatar.

"The fear of contracting the virus made it hard to train in the first place. People were scared and locked themselves up. But I have found a way to train in Nakuru and I have been enjoying my runs with hope to compete in Boston if it will not be canceled," Kirui said on Wednesday.

But with news coming in that the Berlin Marathon has been canceled, Kirui is still fearful his hard work in training might go down the drain should organizers in Boston opt not to stage the event altogether until 2021.

"September is not far away. Already there will be no marathon in Berlin, but we hope America will open up and allow us to compete. People need to return back to life and see what sports can offer. I can only pray to God for things to change," he added.

Kirui's best performance since his win in London was a second-place finish at the 2018 Boston Marathon. He was also sixth in Chicago race in the same year. But he is still optimistic to turn his career around and chase gold in the 2020 season.

"There will always be some race that will boost your career and I believe after a turbulent time in the last two years, I can get a win and stabilize my running again. There is a lot of competition from the younger athletes, but that is what is helping me remain focused. A small slip will be hard to recover from," added Kirui.

Of importance to Kirui is to return to competition and gauge how his solo training has fared.

"When the world is back to normal and we have a sports competition, we will be glad and happy. For now, our health and safety is the priority. But while we maintain a safe distance, we need to focus ahead beyond COVID-19 and strategize on how to compete again," he said.

(04/30/2020) ⚡AMP
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Boston Marathon

Boston Marathon

The 124th Boston Marathon originally scheduled for April 20, is now postponed to September 14 due to the coronavirus outbreak, Boston Marathon is the world's oldest annual marathon and ranks as one of the world's best-known road racing events. The event attracts 500,000 spectators each year, making it New England's most widely viewed sporting event. Though starting with 18 participants...

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NN Running Team releases a short documentary followed several training groups in Africa called The long run, an inside view

The NN Running Team has possibly the most stacked lineup of long distance runners in the world. With world, European and national record-holders, and names like Eliud Kipchoge and Kenenise Bekele, the team uniform can often be seen in the lead at the world’s biggest races. NN Running recently released a min-documentary called The long run, an inside view, which takes viewers into several training camps and focuses on the importance of the long run, which is an integral part of every marathon training plan.

It’s a brief look at what training is like for the world’s best marathoners, and it has great lessons for runners of all levels.

The NN Running Team doesn’t have one set training location, so the film looks at groups in Kenya, Ethiopia and Uganda. In the doc, Kipchoge and Bekele are interviewed in their home countries of Kenya and Ethiopia, respectively, along with Kenyan half-marathon world record-holder, Geoffrey Kamworor, and Joshua Cheptegei, the 5K and 10K world record-holder from Uganda.

Switzerland’s Julien Wanders, the European half-marathon record-holder, is also a member of the NN team, and shots of his training in Iten, Kenya, are included in the film. Selly Chepyego is the only woman from the team featured in the documentary. In 2019, Chepyego, who is from Kenya, came in third at the Berlin Marathon, and earlier this year she was fourth at the Tokyo Marathon.

When we see videos of elite athletes in training, a lot of the time they’re shots from hard workouts on the track. Sometimes there are clips from long runs, but that training session is never the focus. This mini-documentary shows just how important the long run is, especially for marathoners.

“[Marathon training] is basically 90 to 95 per cent mileage,” Victor Chumo says in the film. “If you don’t do it, the chances that you are going to perform [are] less likely. That’s where you find some athletes who are less prepared. When he reaches around 35 to 40K, that’s when he faces some kind of problems or challenges.”

Kipchoge says his group rarely talks during their long runs, because it is a time to “concentrate on yourself.” Just like any other session, the long run requires your focus and attention. Wanders emphasizes that the long run is not a race, and although it can be tempting to run fast and push your training partners, it’s absolutely necessary to hold back and save your speed for another day. They also mention that, rain or shine, the long run always gets done. This is one of the most important parts of marathon training, so you can’t skip it.

Even if you don’t run marathons, there are lessons to be learned from this film, but besides the lessons, it’s just a fun look into the lives (or at least one part of the lives) of some of the world’s best runners.

(04/27/2020) ⚡AMP
by Ben Snider-McGrath
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Eliud Kipchoge and Vivian Cheruiyot will be grateful returning to action in London marathon

Olympic champions Eliud Kipchoge and Vivian Cheruiyot have urged their fans to remain hopeful even as the world battles the effect of coronavirus globally.

The two were due to compete on Sunday in London marathon (April 26), but the race, like many across the globe, has been postponed. Organizers have picked on Oct. 4 as the new dates if the health situation allows.

Cheruiyot, who has recovered from a tendon injury, which ruled her out of the Berlin marathon last year, says despite there being no competition across the sports spectrum, she was happy to be healthy and said she will live to compete again soon.

"Today, there will be no London marathon, but we will be back in action soon. Stay positive and stay healthy," said Cheruiyot on Sunday from Eldoret.

On his side, Kipchoge, who is unable to train with his teammates, says the virus will be defeated and sports will flourish yet again.

"We will return to action stronger and with a lot of hope," said Kipchoge.

"The important thing is to remain focused and disciplined. We have a war to fight against the coronavirus, but we have a responsibility to remain healthy and safe."

The two were also named in the Kenya team for the Tokyo 2020 Olympics before it was pushed back to 2021.

But with no guarantees, Cheruiyot hopes to remain injury free and will always honor a call to represent the country in the Olympics. However, Cheruiyot is non-committal on her fitness when the new dates for the Tokyo Olympics.

"One year is a long time and we want to be in our best shape and compete. But we will be patient and see how the season unfolds. The important thing for now is to remain safe, there are no immediate plans on sports and we have to live with that. Until then, we just train as often as we can under the health guidelines," he said.

Already the London Marathon race director Hugh Brasher has said that while he hopes the London Marathon will take place as normal on Oct. 4, it might have to be slimmed down to an elite only race.

"But in today's society, you can never say never. We are trying to stay really agile and to keep scenario planning. And at the moment, I don't want to discount anything until it becomes really impossible," he said.

Brasher also would not confirm whether Kipchoge and Ethiopia's Kenenisa Bekele had signed up for October's revised race. 

(04/27/2020) ⚡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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The Chicago Marathon Is Allowing Runners to Cancel Their 2020 Race Entries

Runners who do choose to cancel will have guaranteed entry into the 2021 race.

The Chicago Marathon—scheduled for Sunday, October 11, this year—has announced a cancellation option for runners registered for the 2020 race. The policy is not new for the race, but this year is slightly different with the uncertainties arising from the coronavirus pandemic, which has put many races this year in jeopardy because of the risks related to mass gatherings.

Chicago organizers sent an email (obtained by Runner’s World) to entrants on Tuesday announcing the option to cancel would be available starting May 5. Runners will have the option to cancel and earn guaranteed entry to the 2021 race. At the moment, there is no deadline by which runners have to cancel.

However, there are several caveats runners should note when making their decisions.

The move is one we’ll likely see from various races around the world that are canceling or postponing their events due to the coronavirus. The Boston Marathon and the London Marathon were both postponed until the fall, and the Berlin Marathon will not happen as scheduled because of coronavirus restrictions in place in Germany.

(04/26/2020) ⚡AMP
by Runner’s World
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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 andmore 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 fast...

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The 2020 Boston Marathon was postponed but some experts are saying maybe it should be canceled altogether until the fall of 2021

The 2020 Boston Marathon was postponed due to the coronavirus. Could it be canceled altogether?

Marty Walsh is "hopeful" the race will happen in September. Some experts aren't sure it should.

For the first time since the 19th century, April will pass in Boston without a Boston Marathon.

Rather than cheering crowds, the course was overcome by eery silence this Patriots’ Day, after the 124th edition of the race was postponed until Sept. 14 due to the coronavirus outbreak.

Boston Mayor Marty Walsh has said he hopes runners and fans will still embrace the “once-in-a-lifetime” late-summer race. But as a clearer picture begins to emerge of the steps needed to effectively beat back the virus, it’s increasingly unclear whether the 2020 marathon can — or should — happen at all.

“I do not think such a race will be wise in September,” said Glen Weyl, a co-author of a report released this week by Harvard’s Safra Center for Ethics on the steps needed to combat the pandemic in order to safely return to normalcy.

The Safra Center report and others, released by both right-leaning and left-leaning groups, broadly recommend a similar path forward: While certain nonessential businesses may be allowed to reopen in phases as COVID-19 testing and tracing is ramped up, bans against mass public gatherings — like concerts and sporting events — should remain in place until mass immunity or a vaccine is developed, which is expected to take at least another year.

Given its usual pool of 30,000 runners and hundreds of thousands of spectators along the 26.2-mile course, it’s hard to foresee the Boston Marathon going forward in any recognizable way in September, according to Weyl.

“Anything even close to the current format could not work,” he told Boston.com.

Walsh is aware of the bleak projection; in a recent CNN interview, he acknowledged the possibility that concerts and sporting events may not be able to resume in Boston until 2021.

And during a press conference Wednesday, he noted the recent cancellation of the Berlin Marathon — a 60,000-person race scheduled two weeks later than the Boston Marathon and in a country with more widespread testing — after city officials extended a ban on all events of more than 5,000 people through Oct. 24.

“To be honest, we haven’t had those conversations yet,” the mayor said during a press conference Wednesday, when asked about the chances that the Boston Marathon would happen as planned in September.

“I am hopeful that we will be able to have the marathon, because certainly it felt on Monday there was a void in the city of Boston,” he added. “But we will have more conversations and discussions.”

The Boston Athletic Association, which organizes the annual race, says it will follow the guidance of city and state officials on matters of public health and safety, particularly when it comes to the coronavirus pandemic.

“We will remain flexible to address and explore all factors with public officials as we plan for the race,” the BAA told Boston.com in a statement. “Our priority remains the health and well-being of members of our community.”

The marathon has never been canceled in its history. Only in 1918, due to World War I, was the annual Patriots’ Day race changed to a military relay race. In the midst of the coronavirus pandemic, the usually 38,000-runner Tokyo Marathon last month narrowed down its field to 200 elite runners and advised spectators against gathering along the route.

Walsh, however, has dismissed the notion of stripping the Boston Marathon of its defining characteristics.

“That’s not the Boston Marathon,” he said last month, when asked about restricting the race to elite runners. “We’re an inclusive marathon. The Boston Marathon is for everyone.”

While the Berlin race will not take place in September “as planned,” the Boston Marathon isn’t the only major event still slated for this year.

Major marathons in London and Madrid, originally scheduled in April, have also been postponed until the fall. And the New York City Marathon is  still officially planned to go forward on Nov. 1.

Experts say certain social distancing measures could be incrementally repealed this summer in the so-called second phase of the coronavirus response. However, they agree that bans on large gatherings will be the last to be lifted.

Scott Gottlieb, the former Food and Drug Association commissioner under President Donald Trump, wrote in a recent report that while “the majority of schools, universities, and businesses” could reopen during the second phase, “social gatherings should continue to be limited to fewer than 50 people wherever possible,” until a vaccine has been approved.

The liberal-leaning Center for American Progress made a similar recommendation.

“Gatherings of more than 50 people must continue to be banned,” the think tank wrote in a report earlier this month. “Once herd immunity has been achieved through mass vaccination, all remaining restrictions can be lifted.”

Given the timeline for developing a treatment for the disease, epidemiologists at Harvard’s Chan School of Public Health estimated in a report last week that the bans on large gatherings may not be “fully relaxed by early- to mid-2021,” with intermittent social distancing possibly needed until 2022.

“It depends on the data and information we have available to us and where we are with the coronavirus, what cases are still active, how much testing do we have, how many people are immune to the virus,” Walsh told CNN last week.

There are also some concerns about a second wave of coronavirus hitting in the fall in conjunction with flu season when the weather gets colder.

In a recent New York Times interview, bioethicist Zeke Emmanuel ridiculed the notion that the largest gatherings — specifically conferences, concerts, and sporting events — could be put off until later in the year.

“When people say they’re going to reschedule this conference or graduation event for October 2020, I have no idea how they think that’s a plausible possibility,” Emmanuel said. “I think those things will be the last to return. Realistically we’re talking fall 2021 at the earliest.”

(04/25/2020) ⚡AMP
by Nik DeCosta-Klipa (Boston.com)
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Boston Marathon

Boston Marathon

The 124th Boston Marathon originally scheduled for April 20, is now postponed to September 14 due to the coronavirus outbreak, Boston Marathon is the world's oldest annual marathon and ranks as one of the world's best-known road racing events. The event attracts 500,000 spectators each year, making it New England's most widely viewed sporting event. Though starting with 18 participants...

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More about the 2020 Berlin Marathon Cancelation

The decision was made after the Germany government banned group gatherings of more than 5,000 people until after October 24.

On April 21, the Berlin Marathon announced that the race will not happen as planned on September 27, due to coronavirus restrictions on group sizes in Berlin.

The announcement did not mention whether the race is canceled outright or will be postponed for a later date.

As the COVID-19 pandemic continues to impact a huge number of lives across the globe, large races set for the fall have begun to seem less and less likely to happen. And on April 21, the unfortunate news came: the Berlin Marathon, scheduled for September 27, has been canceled due to coronavirus restrictions.

According to an announcement on the race’s event page, the marathon can’t be run as scheduled because of an ordinance set in place by the German government prohibiting all events with more than 5,000 people from now until October 24.

The announcement did not mention whether the race is canceled outright or will be postponed for a later date. It also didn’t mention whether or not registered runners will be able to receive a refund for their race bib or roll over their registration to 2021.

The announcement did not mention whether the race is canceled outright or will be postponed for a later date. It also didn’t mention whether or not registered runners will be able to receive a refund for their race bib or roll over their registration to 2021.

“We will now deal with the consequences, coordinate the further steps, and inform you as soon as we can. Let us remain strong together,” said the Berlin Marathon event team in an Instagram post.

Eliminating the Berlin Marathon from the fall race schedule is especially sad news for the running community, as the fast course has hosted spectacular performances over the years, including Eliud Kipchoge’s current marathon world record of 2:01:39.

The cancellation also puts into question the likelihood of whether the other World Major Marathons—Boston, London, Chicago, and New York City—will happen as planned later this year.

The Chicago Marathon, still scheduled to run on October 11, recently announced a cancellation option for runners registered for the 2020 race. Meanwhile, Boston and London—which were originally planned for this month but postponed until September 14 and October 4, respectively—as well as New York City, scheduled for November 1, have not yet made announcements about coronavirus-related schedule changes.

(04/25/2020) ⚡AMP
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BMW Berlin Marathon

BMW Berlin Marathon

2020 Marathon has been cancelled. The story of the BERLIN-MARATHON is a story of the development of road running. When the first BERLIN-MARATHON was started on 13th October 1974 on a minor road next to the stadium of the organisers‘ club SC Charlottenburg Berlin 286 athletes had entered. The first winners were runners from Berlin: Günter Hallas (2:44:53), who...

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The race director of London Marathon admits that the event may include only elite runners

The race director of the London Marathon has refused to rule out staging the event as an elite-only race in the autumn if social distancing rules make it impossible to run as normal.

Hugh Brasher told the Guardian that while organisers still hoped to hold the event with 45,000 mass participants on 4 October, they were now scenario-planning around 10 other options because of the global pandemic.

“The flame is still burning,” said Brasher. “And is there hope? Absolutely. But you have to do what’s right for society. You usually have 750,000 people out in central London watching 45,000 runners. Then there’s the medics, the 6,000 volunteers and the transport system. There’s masses to take into account when making any decision.”

When asked directly whether the London Marathon – which was due to take place this Sunday before being pushed back – might have to be only for elite athletes if social restrictions had not eased completely, Brasher replied: “Honestly, I don’t know. But in today’s society, you can never say never. We are trying to stay really agile and to keep scenario planning. And at the moment, I don’t want to discount anything until it becomes really impossible.”

Last month’s Tokyo marathon was staged as an elite-only race, with the field reduced to just 300 runners and the streets largely deserted. Most major spring marathons subsequently decided to postpone their races to the autumn – but those events also look in doubt with no vaccine in sight and, ominously, the Berlin marathon has already cancelled its race in September.

“Our decision will be made by the back end of August at the latest,” explained Brasher. “It will be based on the government guidelines, and what we and society think is right and what feels right.”

Brasher would not confirm whether Eliud Kipchoge and Kenenisa Bekele, who were due to meet on Sunday in a clash for the ages, had signed up for October’s revised race. However he told the Guardian: “We always want to get the most competitive race. This was going to be the 40th London marathon, and its greatest race. It was going to be spectacular. But we want to make October 4 spectacular too. So that’s what our focus is.”

Last year the London Marathon raised £66.4m for charities, again making it the biggest single-day fundraising event in Britain. And while Sunday’s race will not take place, organisers are still hoping that thousands of people will spend the day raising and donating money for charities as part of a nationwide 2.6 Challenge – in which people tackle something related to the numbers two and six.

More than £1.5m has already been raised for the campaign, and Brasher said he hoped it would prove a lifeline for many charities which usually rely heavily on the race to fund their work.

“The London Marathon is normally about so many scripts and so many stories,” said Brasher. “It’s the greatest athletes in the world with the everyday athlete – who are doing this incredible challenge with the gods of the sport such as Kipchoge, Bekele and Brigid Kosgei, on the same day, on the same course, with the same crowd. In fact, the everyday person gets more people watching them. That’s the incredible thing. And, of course, they are raising so much money for charity too.”

 

(04/24/2020) ⚡AMP
by Sean Ingle
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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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Kenya's Gladys Cherono changes plans after Berlin race cancellation

Gladys Cherono has been forced to defer her dream for a fourth Berlin Marathon title with the 2017 World marathon champion, Geoffrey Kirui also putting on hold his debut in the race.

The organisers of the race that was due for September 27 have been forced to cancel the marathon after the Berlin Senate, the executive body that governs the city, extended the ban on gatherings of more than 5,000 participants until October 24 due to the novel coronavirus.

"We have learned from the press conference of the Berlin Senate on April 21, 2020, that according to the Containment Ordinance, all events with more than 5,000 persons will be prohibited until October 24, 2020. This applies to many of our events, but especially to the Berlin Marathon,” said a statement on the event’s website.

This is the first cancellation of a World Marathon Majors race this year owing to coronavirus, and it raises questions about the likelihood of other races taking place around the same time, including the rescheduled London Marathon, which is to take place on October 4.

Cherono, the 2014 World Half Marathon champion, was due to make her fifth appearance in Berlin where she won on her debut in 2015 before capturing the title again in 2017 and 2018.

Last year, the 36-year-old Cherono failed to finish the race after she fell sick just before the race.

Perhaps Cherono’s memorable victory was in 2018 when she triumphed with the fourth fastest time in marathon by then of 2:18:11, which still remains the course record.

“You can only understand what is happening across the world as nations battle to not only control the spread of Covid-19 but also get a cure for the disease,” said Cherono. “It’s impossible to plan for a race until October or November there.”

Cherono, who is now training alone in Eldoret under her coach-cum-husband Joseph Kwambok, said if all goes well she could compete in London due October or New York City Marathon planned for November 1.

(04/23/2020) ⚡AMP
by Ayumba Ayodi
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BMW Berlin Marathon

BMW Berlin Marathon

2020 Marathon has been cancelled. The story of the BERLIN-MARATHON is a story of the development of road running. When the first BERLIN-MARATHON was started on 13th October 1974 on a minor road next to the stadium of the organisers‘ club SC Charlottenburg Berlin 286 athletes had entered. The first winners were runners from Berlin: Günter Hallas (2:44:53), who...

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The Berlin Marathon can´t be held as planned in September because of new restrictions in the city related to the coronavirus pandemic

The Berlin Marathon will not go ahead as planned in September after Germany banned public gatherings of over 5,000 people until Oct. 24 due to the coronavirus pandemic, organisers have said.

They did not specify if the event, at which the last seven men's world records have been set, would be postponed or cancelled altogether.

"We have learned from the press conference of the Berlin Senate on April 21, that according to the Containment Ordinance, all events with more than 5,000 persons will be prohibited until Oct. 24," organisers said in a statement.

"This applies to many of our events, but especially to the Berlin Marathon, which cannot take place on Sept. 26 and 27 as planned.

"We will now deal with the consequences of the official prohibition of our events, coordinate the further steps and inform you as soon as we can."

The 2019 Berlin marathon was won by Ethiopia's Kenenisa Bekele who missed creating a new world record by two seconds.

The London Marathon, which was scheduled to be held on Sunday, has been postponed to Oct. 4 due to the virus.

The coronavirus has infected 2.5 million people globally causing over 172,900 deaths.

(04/22/2020) ⚡AMP
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BMW Berlin Marathon

BMW Berlin Marathon

2020 Marathon has been cancelled. The story of the BERLIN-MARATHON is a story of the development of road running. When the first BERLIN-MARATHON was started on 13th October 1974 on a minor road next to the stadium of the organisers‘ club SC Charlottenburg Berlin 286 athletes had entered. The first winners were runners from Berlin: Günter Hallas (2:44:53), who...

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Krishnan Padmakumar from India, runs full marathon inside his house

The 21-day lockdown amid coronavirus pandemic, people are driving crazy but they are somehow finding hacks to keep themselves active and fit. However, 46-year-old- Krishnan Padmakumar has gone to the next level by running a full marathon inside his house. Krishnan clocked an impressive 4 hours and 26 minutes to cover 42.2km, probably a first-of-its-kind feat in the country.

An engineer by profession and an avid runner, Krishnan is an active member of ITEN runners club, a group of city-based runners. The Thiruvananthapuram resident has in the past run many marathons with the latest being the Berlin Marathon. It was the idleness amid the nationwide lockdown that prompted him to attempt a marathon within the four walls of his house at Kowdiar.

In an interview with Times of India, he said “On a normal week, I run around 60-80km and also cycle in between. The shutdown made me stay away from my regular activity, that’s when I decided to do full marathon inside my house. It was also a way to overcome the boredom. A few of my friends staying abroad have also done similar run.” He has also video recorded the ‘apartment marathon’ partly and logged the timings on a fitness app.

He started the marathon by 4:15am on March 31, and he looped the run through the corridor, living room and dining area of his house and after around 1,200 loops of 35 meter each, he managed to complete the marathon by 8:40am. 

“By the time I woke up around 5am, he was already running. He had told me the previous night that he would be finishing the run which he could not, in the previous attempts. I supported him by giving him water and cheered him,” said his wife Sreedevi Gopalakrishnan.

While Krishnan was about to reach his target, Ambika, his 11-year-old daughter, made a handcrafted medal for him, with the slogan ‘Stay home, Stay safe’ on it. His son Aditya, who couldn’t witness the achievement, woke up with amusement knowing that his father had completed a full marathon inside the house.

(04/06/2020) ⚡AMP
by Md Imtiaz
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Kipchoge and Bekele showdown to wait until October 4 in London

Ethiopia's Kenenisa Bekele (left) and Kenya's marathon world-record holder Eliud Kipchoge will have to wait until October 4 to face off.

The London Marathon scheduled to take place on April 26 has been postponed to October 4 due to the Coronavirus pandemic.

The organisers made the announcement on Friday, with event director Hugh Brasher citing health as a priority as the world continues to battle with containing the virus.

“The world is in an unprecedented situation grappling with a global pandemic of COVID-19 and public health is everyone’s priority,” Brasher said.

World record-holder Eliud Kipchoge was among the first top athletes to react to the news of the cancellation of the marathon on social media, expressing his disappointment while still sharing a message of positivity.

"It is unfortunate news that the London Marathon has been postponed but I fully respect the decision made by the organization as safeguarding the health of the world always takes our top priority. To the thousands of runners who with me, have devoted the last months of our lives towards this goal I would like to say: Be proud of the work you have put into this journey, keep smiling and seek your next goal on the horizon to continue running in a smooth and positive way. I hope to share the starting line with you again soon," said Kipchoge. 

Eliud Kipchoge and Brigid Kosgei pose for a picture with Prince Harry while holding their awards in last year's marathon.

Kipchoge and Ethiopia's Kenenisa Bekele were set to go head to head in a contest for the ages, as was Kenya’s women's record-holder Brigid Kosgei.

Kipchoge broke the two-hour marathon barrier in Vienna last October in the INEOS 1:59 Challenge.

The marathon was intended to be an Olympic qualifying event for Team Great Britain. British Athletics said it would hold a separate marathon trial for the Tokyo Games “in a closed location, with limited numbers” potentially around April 25 to 27.

The Boston Marathon, another one of the six World Marathon Majors, has also been postponed to mid-September.

These developments come days after the Kenyan Ministry of Sports banned athletes from travelling to any international sports events for the next month following the global outbreak of Covid-19.

The decision to push this year’s London Marathon to October 4, means the race will now take place on the same day as the Cardiff Half Marathon.

Brasher, thanked every institution that came to support them during this time and expressed optimism of finding the best dates for future races.

“We are extremely grateful for all the support we have received from City Hall, the London boroughs of Greenwich, Lewisham, Southwark, Tower Hamlets, the City of Westminster and the City of London, Transport for London, the emergency services, the Royal Parks, BBC TV and many others as we worked to find an alternative date. The 40th race is scheduled to go ahead on Sunday, October 4, 2020.”

Here are the new major marathon schedules:

Boston Marathon – September 14

Berlin Marathon – September 27

London Marathon – October 4

Chicago Marathon – October 10

(03/15/2020) ⚡AMP
by Robert Abong’o
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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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Ukrainian runner Oleksii Borysenko is missing in Japan

In Japan for the Tokyo Marathon, Ukrainian runner Oleksii Borysenko has been missing since late February.

A search was launched on Monday on Mt. Fuji for Ukrainian marathoner and trail runner Oleksii Borysenko. Borysenko was in Japan for the Tokyo Marathon, but was unable to race due to the cancellation of the mass participation race. He was last seen on February 28 heading into a subway station.

Borysenko, 37, is an accomplished runner and ambassador for Hoka One One Ukraine. In 2019, he posted several impressive results from races across Europe. He ran a 2:37:29 at the Berlin Marathon in September, and later in November he came fifth at the Kyiv City Half-Marathon in 1:14:58 (which, according to his Instagram page, are his PBs at each distance).

He also represented Ukraine at the 2019 Trail World Championships in Miranda do Corvo, Portugal.

The Tokyo Reporter wrote that the search was called off after just one day due to unsafe weather conditions on Mt. Fuji. The rescue team reached an elevation of 3,000 meters before they had to turn around (Mt. Fuji has a total elevation of 3,776 meters). The search is set to resume once the conditions clear up.

(03/11/2020) ⚡AMP
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Tokyo Marathon

Tokyo Marathon

The Tokyo Marathon is an annual marathon sporting event in Tokyo, the capital of Japan. It is an IAAF Gold Label marathon and one of the six World Marathon Majors. (2020) The Tokyo Marathon Foundation said it will cancel the running event for non-professional runners as the coronavirus outbreak pressures cities and institutions to scrap large events. Sponsored by Tokyo...

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More about the Legendary Texas Tech track and field distance runner Sally Kipyego who qualified for Tokyo Olympics

Legendary Texas Tech track and field distance runner Sally Kipyego qualified for the 2020 Summer Olympics Saturday in the marathon. Kipyego, 34, competed at the US Olympic Marathon Trials in Atlanta, where she ran 2:28.52 to claim the third and final spot on the roster.

The Kenyan-born runner will represent the United States in Tokyo this summer, a goal she has had since becoming a U.S. citizen in 2017. She was one of three to make the U.S. team Saturday, joining 10-time national champion and fellow Kenyan immigrant Aliphine Tuliamuk and Molly Seidel.

"What a great accomplishment for Sally," said Director of Track & Field and Cross Country Wes Kittley, who coached Kipyego at Tech from 2006-2009. "Red Raiders far and wide are so proud of what she has accomplished."

Kipyego's return to the Olympics is being praised across the track world, as the former Tech runner has battled through considerable adversity to make it back to the Games. After earning silver in the 10,000m in London in 2012, Kipyego had to pause her training in 2017 while she was pregnant with her daughter, Emma. During her pregnancy, she was unable to run from 18 weeks through childbirth. In the months following, she struggled with pneumonia and malaria, making a return to racing shape even more difficult. Ultimately, she was forced to delay her comeback and withdraw from the NYC Marathon in November 2018.

Still, Kipyego persevered, eyes set on Tokyo. A member of the elite Oregon Track Club, she lived and trained in her home country of Kenya, using the altitude to bolster her regimen. By early 2019, she had worked her mileage up to 115 per week at marathon pace.

In April of that year, she attempted a comeback at the Boston Marathon but walked off the course after 18 miles due to fatigue. Though the plan was to not run another marathon until Saturday's Trials, Kipyego, seeking redemption and a confidence boost, entered the Berlin Marathon last September. It was the perfect decision, as she ran a lifetime best of 2:25.10. Five months later, of course, she would complete her comeback and earn a spot on the U.S. team.

"It's just a testament to her incredible hard work and dedication to the sport," said head distance coach Jon Murray, who coached Kipyego to three straight NCAA and Big 12 titles in cross country. "Coming back from pregnancy and some of the rough times she's had these past few years really shows her commitment. At Tech, she hated to lose, and I think that shows in her continued pursuit to be back in race shape and be the best that she can be."

Kipyego's career at Tech is considered one of the greatest of any collegiate athlete in any sport in NCAA history. During her four years in Lubbock, she won eight national titles. Kipyego is the only NCAA athlete ever to win four national titles in one year, doing so in 2007 when she won championships in cross country, the indoor 3000m, indoor 5000m and the outdoor 10,000m. She is the only Big 12 runner ever to win three consecutive conference titles in cross country. Kipyego owns the outdoor school records in the 1500m, 5000m and 10,000m, and ran on the record-holding distance medley relay. Indoors, her records in the mile, 3000m and 5000m still stand today, as do her 5k and 6k cross country marks.

In 2019, Kipyego was inducted into the Texas Tech Athletic Hall of Fame.

(03/03/2020) ⚡AMP
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Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games

Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games

Fifty-six years after having organized the Olympic Games, the Japanese capital will be hosting a Summer edition for the second time, originally scheduled from July 24 to August 9, 2020, the games were postponed due to coronavirus outbreak, the postponed Tokyo Olympics will be held from July 23 to August 8 in 2021, according to the International Olympic Committee decision....

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World marathon bronze medalist Amos Kipruto is planning to break the course record on his second appearance at Tokyo Marathon

World marathon bronze medalist Amos Kipruto is planning to lower his personal best time and perhaps break the course record on his second appearance at Tokyo Marathon on Sunday.

Kipruto, who ran his personal best of two hours, five minutes and 43 seconds when finishing fourth at the 2017 Amsterdam Marathon, believes a good show in Tokyo should set a good stage for the 2020 Tokyo Olympics.

Former world marathon record holder Wilson Kipsang holds the course record time of 2:03:58 set in 2017.

Another fast time on the course was set last year by Ethiopian Birhanu Legese, who won the race in 2:04:48.

“I am expecting a pretty fast race with a possibility of the field breaking the 2:03 barrier,” said Kipruto, who is determined to finish in a better podium place than in 2018 when he settled third in 2:06:33, a race won by compatriot Dickson Chumba in 2:05:30.

“I have really trained well since claiming bronze at the World Championships last year and I feel ready to battle,” explained Kipruto, who has been training in Kapsabet with the 2Running team under Italian coach Claudio Berardelli.

I know the field will go at a great pace but my plan is to beat my personal best for a possible victory.

It will be his third World Marathon Majors race, having finished third at 2018 Tokyo before chalking a second place finish at 2018 Berlin Marathon where compatriot Eliud Kipchoge set a new world marathon record of 2:01:39. Kipruto returned a time of 2:06:23 with Kipsang wrapping up the podium place in 2:06:48.

(02/27/2020) ⚡AMP
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Tokyo Marathon

Tokyo Marathon

The Tokyo Marathon is an annual marathon sporting event in Tokyo, the capital of Japan. It is an IAAF Gold Label marathon and one of the six World Marathon Majors. (2020) The Tokyo Marathon Foundation said it will cancel the running event for non-professional runners as the coronavirus outbreak pressures cities and institutions to scrap large events. Sponsored by Tokyo...

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Honami Maeda Breaks Mizuki Noguchi's 30 km National Record and Pre-Athens Ome 30 km Course Record

2020 Olympic marathon trials winner Honami Maeda (Tenmaya) took down two massive marks at Sunday's Ome 30 km Road Race in Tokyo's mountainous western suburbs, breaking Mizuki Noguchi's 30 km national record and pre-Athens Olympic gold medal Ome course record in 1:38:35 in wet conditions. Beating her closest female competition by almost eight minutes, Maeda was strong and about as steady as possible over the tough Ome course, clocking 5 km splits of 16:18 - 16:18 - 16:48 - 16:22 - 16:37 - 16:12.

Maeda's stated goal pre-race was Noguchi's 1:39:06 course record, set in February, 2004 as a key tune-up for Noguchi's gold medal-winning run in the Athens Olympics marathon. That fell by a wide margin, but few expected Maeda to also beat Noguchi's national record of 1:38:49 set en route during her 2:19:12 marathon national record run at the 2005 Berlin Marathon. It took Maeda's fastest split of the race, a 16:12 from 25 km to the finish, for that to happen, but happen it did. And the times being what they are, it's worth mentioning that she didn't appear to have been wearing carbon plate shoes. Looking at Noguchi in 2004 and at Maeda now, Maeda is looking more and more like the real deal. Maybe it's time to start getting a tiny bit excited about what might happen this summer.

The women's race at the other big 30 km race of the day, Kumamoto's Kumanichi 30 km Road Race, was closer, if nowhere near Maeda's level, and equally wet. 20-year-old Ako Matsumoto (Denso) ran 1:46:09, 10 seconds faster than Ome runner-up Yuri Nozoe (Mitsui Sumitomo Kaijo), for the win, with teammate Ayano Ikeuchi and Chika Ihara (Higo Ginko) both finishing within a minute of her for 2nd and 3rd.

The men's races in Ome and Kumanichi were almost the inverse of what happened in the women's race. In Ome, a pack of eight went out on track to break the 1:29:06 course record set by Kenyan Ezekiel Cheboitibin (Sunbelx) last year. By halfway that was down to a trio, former Hakone Ekiden uphill Fifth Stage winner Daniel Muiva Kitonyi (Track Tokyo), Masaya Taguchi (Honda), and Junsuke Kanbe (Komazawa Univ.).

Rounding the turnaround for the mostly downhill return trip Kitonyi attacked, but the last hard uphill with just over 8 km to go killed him. Taguchi rolled up and by in the last 5 km to take the win in 1:30:45. Kitonyi staggered in for 2nd in 1:31:14, holding off Ryo Kawamoto (Kurosaki Harima) who came up from the chase pack for 3rd in 1:31:51.

In Kumanichi, former half marathon and marathon national record holder Yuta Shitara, like Ome winner Taguchi a graduate of Toyo University and current Honda corporate team runner, did what he does best and soloed the race start to finish, winning in 1:29:47 by nearly a minute over Kazuto Kawabata (Konica Minolta). His time bettered the 1:29:55 run by his twin brother Keita Shitara at Kumanichi 7 years ago and served as a confidence builder ahead of next month's Tokyo Marathon where he hopes to run 2:04.

Post-race he told the media, "If I lost here there would be no next time. In the two weeks left until the Tokyo Marathon I want to bring my level up another 20~30%. I want to run the kind of race that's going to get people all across Japan excited."

54th Ome 30 km Road Race

(02/22/2020) ⚡AMP
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Ohme Road Race

Ohme Road Race

Ohme-Hochi 10K Road Race is organized by Ome Athletic Association in Ome, Tokyo, Japan in the month of February. The road race held just outside Tokyo, is part of a longstanding exchange program between the BAA and the Ohme Road Race, which is sponsored by the Hochi Shimbun. The events include 30K Race and a 10K Run. The number of...

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Six of Canada’s fastest women are set to race United Airlines NYC half

March 15 is the United Airlines NYC Half-Marathon and six of Canada’s fastest women are set to race. Natasha Wodak, Krista DuChene, Kinsey Middleton, Jen Moroz, Melanie Myrand and Dayna Pidhoresky will all be lining up.

Canada is in the midst of a distance running renaissance that’s showing no signs of slowing down, and these women have played a major part in that. Wodak holds that fastest personal best of the Canadians. She ran a Canadian record in Houston a few weeks ago, becoming the first Canadian women to run under 1:10:00 for the half.

Her record of 1:09:41 stood for three weeks before it was broken by Andrea Seccafien, the current record holder, by two seconds.

DuChene is coming off her strongest year since 2015, running a 2:32:27 to win the master’s division at the 2019 Berlin Marathon. Middleton had a tough day at STWM in October but her 1:12:15 from Houston shows that she’s ready for a strong spring racing season. Myrand hasn’t put up a result since the World Championship marathon in Doha last September, so it’ll be interesting to see where she’s at. Her current personal best is a 1:15:50, a time she’ll likely lower.

Pidhoresky hasn’t touched her half-marathon personal best since the Niagara Falls half-marathon in 2011. Her 1:11:46 is sure to get broken, especially considering her Olympic qualifying marathon from STWM.

(02/20/2020) ⚡AMP
by Madeleine Kelly
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United Airlines NYC Half-Marathon

United Airlines NYC Half-Marathon

The 2020 event scheduled for March 15 has been cancelled due to the Coronavirus. The United Airlines NYC Half takes runners from around the city and the globe on a 13.1-mile tour of NYC. Led by a talent-packed roster of American and international elites, runners will stop traffic in the Big Apple this March! Runners will begin their journey on...

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Chumo and Bekere take Barcelona half marathon wins

Kenya’s Victor Chumo and Ethiopia’s Ashete Bekere took their respective titles at the eDreams Mitja Marato Barcelona, a World Athletics Gold Label road race, on Sunday (16). On a perfect day for running, the 33-year-old Chumo succeeded after a thrilling sprint finish in 59:58 while Bekere was an overwhelming victor to smash her career best by exactly four minutes to 1:06:37.

Paced by the Kenyan pair of Cornelius Kiplangat and Boniface Kibiwot, the men’s race kicked off at a moderate tempo as the large main group went through the opening 5km in 14:18. The rhythm then heated up over the following kilometres, with the lead pack reaching 10km in 28:04, well on schedule to attack the course record of 59:44 set in 2018. Six men remained in contention: Kenyans Chimo and Moses Koech, Uganda’s Stephen Kissa and Mande Bushendich, and Eritrea’s Abrar Osman and Ethiopia’s Tesfahun Alkanew.

Once the pacesetters dropped out the six athletes took turns with the pacing duties. First Chumo took command, then Osman, the only athlete with sub-60 minute credentials, pushed hard. Even Kissa moved to the front on his first ever try over the distance.

By 15km, the clock was reading a promising 42:24 with six men still battling it out. But the speed decreased a bit over the following kilometres with a 54:14 19km split eliminating any chance of a course record. Over the closing kilometre, Chumo, Koech and Kissa proved to be the strongest and pulled away targeting a sub-one hour run.

Chumo prevailed at the tape in 59:58, clipping five seconds from his previous best with Kissa and Koech next in 1:00:00, an interesting debut for the Ugandan and a career best for the 22-year-old Kenyan by 11 seconds.

“I have been looking for an under 60 minute time for so long so I’m very satisfied with my win and my clocking today,” Chumo said.

Bekere dominates women’s race, Dereje falters

Held simultaneously with the men’s race, the women’s contest began conservatively as the four-woman leading group went through the opening five kilometres in 15:51. That pack included pre-race favourite Roza Dereje, her fellow Ethiopians Ashete Bekere and Asnakech Awoke plus Kenya’s Dorcas Kimeli. Always paced by Daniel Feyisa, the quartet passed 10km in 31:32 for a 15:41 5km split, but not fast enough to threaten either the world record or the course record set by Florence Kiplagat in a then world record of 1:05:09. By then, Britain’s Charlotte Arter travelled in fifth (32:390 alongside Ugandan Rachael Chebet while Germany’s Alina Reh ran 22 seconds behind that duo.

After another 15:51 5km section for an overall 47:23 15km split, the big surprise came when Dereje simply could not live with the pace and began to struggle leaving behind any chance of a podium finish. Simultaneously, Bekere, the winner at the last Berlin marathon in a PB of 2:20:14, began to push hard and Kimeli soon lost ground. Awoke managed to keep up with her compatriot for some 1200m, Bekere’s relentless pace proved too fast. She broke from Awoke with three kilometres remaining and finished unchallenged in 1:06:37 for a massive PB. Awoke’s 1:07:04 was also a lifetime best by over three minutes. Kimeli completed the podium six seconds behind Awoke in 1:07:10 also a career best for the Kenyan. As for Dereje, she finished two minutes behind the winner in 1:08:38.

Arter managed to hold off the late challenge by fast-finishing Reh to finish fifth in 1:10:01, seven seconds ahead of the German.

(02/16/2020) ⚡AMP
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Barcelona Half Marathon

Barcelona Half Marathon

The half-marathon in Barcelona, also known as the Mitja Marató de Barcelona. It’s the second largest running event in Barcelona next to the Marathon. The route takes the runners from the Arc de Triomf, by the old town to the Plaça Catalunya. From there it goes down the famous Ramblas and along Avenida del Paral·lel. Then it goes through the...

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Kenyan Bedan Karoki and world marathon bronze medalist Amos Kipruto are among a star-studded line up for this year’s Tokyo Marathon on March 1

The duo will be joined by two-time winner Dickson Chumba, Honolulu marathon champion Titus Ekiru and defending champion Birhanu Legese of Ethiopia.

Karoki will be returning to the Japanese capital after clinching silver last year when he clocked 2:06:48 just two minutes shy off Legese.

Kipruto, the 2018 Berlin Marathon silver medallist will be making his debut alongside the in-form Ekiru who enjoyed massive success in 2019 winning Milano City Marathon, Portugal City Half Marathon while also clinching gold in Half Marathon in African Games in held in Rabat, Morocco.

For the experienced Chumba- the 2014 and 2018 champion- he will be looking to claim a third title after dropping to a third-place finish last year in 2:08:44.

Kenyans will however be wary of the threat posed by Legese whose mark of 2:04:48 is the second-fastest winning time in the Japanese capital after Wilson Kipsang’s 2:03:58 in 2017.

In the women’s field Kenya’s duo of Sally Chepyego and Frankfurt marathon champion Valary Aiyabei will take on the defending champion Ruti Aga and 2015 champion Birhane Dibaba both of Ethiopia.

Aga attained the third-fastest time during last year’s win as she clocked 2:20:40

Tokyo marathon is the first stop of six World Marathon Majors.

(01/29/2020) ⚡AMP
by Gilbert Kiprotich
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Tokyo Marathon

Tokyo Marathon

The Tokyo Marathon is an annual marathon sporting event in Tokyo, the capital of Japan. It is an IAAF Gold Label marathon and one of the six World Marathon Majors. (2020) The Tokyo Marathon Foundation said it will cancel the running event for non-professional runners as the coronavirus outbreak pressures cities and institutions to scrap large events. Sponsored by Tokyo...

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Ethiopian Haftamnesh Tesfay leads a quartet of sub-2:22 runners at the 39th edition of the Osaka Women’s Marathon

Four runners from abroad have faster personal bests than the Japanese: Ethiopians Tesfay and Meskerem Assefa, Mimi Belete of Bahrain and Kenyan Bornes Jepkirui. Tesfay ran 2:20:13 in her debut at the 2018 Dubai Marathon, at the time the fourth fastest marathon debut in history. She followed up with a 2:20:47 run in Frankfurt later that year. Assefa won the Nagoya Women’s Marathon in 2018 and later in the year finished 11 seconds ahead of Tesfay in Frankfurt with a 2:20:36 PB. Although they did not have a good 2019 season, both have sub-2:20 potential and said they are running to win on Sunday.

With a 2:21:22 performance to her credit, Mimi Belete is the third fastest in the field; more importantly, she set that at last October’s Amsterdam Marathon, clipping more than a minute from her previous best. Belete was a solid performer on the track, with 1500m and 5000m medals Asian Games medals in her collection.

Defending champion Fatuma Sado and Jepkirui, who was third last year, are back. Jepkirui improved her personal best to 2:21:26 in the 2019 Ljubljana Marathon. The last runner to win back-to-back titles was Lidia Simon who won in 1999 and 2000. Before the Romanian, Katrin Dorre also collected back-to-back victories. The German won in Osaka a record four times. Her daughter, Katharina Steinruck, a 2:27:26 marathoner, will be running this year.

For Japanese women, it is the second to last opportunity to secure the third spot on the Olympic marathon squad. The first two finishers at September's Marathon Grand Championships (MGC) were automatically selected for the team. But third place finisher Rei Ohara, who finished four seconds behind the automatic-qualifying spot for the team, is not confirmed. Four years ago at the Nagoya Women’s Marathon, Ohara finished one second behind Tomomi Tanaka who clinched the final spot on the team bound for Rio. Thus Ohara is a sentimental favourite here, but if somebody runs faster than 2:22:22 in Osaka, or later in Nagoya, Ohara will be out.

Ohara could have chosen to sit and wait, but she decided run in Osaka.

“The memory of missing the team by one second four years ago still haunts me,” Ohara said, speaking at today’s pre-race press conference. “I could have sat and waited, but I want to be a challenger. On Sunday I want to go after the team berth which eluded me at the MGC.”

That sets up the clash between Ohara, who was third in the MGC, Mizuki Matsuda, fourth in the MGC and Kayoko Fukushi, seventh in the MGC, as a potential highlight of the race. Fukushi is the fastest with a 2:22:17 personal best from the 2016 Osaka race. Matsuda is six seconds slower with 2:22:23, recorded in the 2018 Berlin Marathon.

“I have done the best training possible,” said Matsuda, who also attended today’s press conference. “I will run on Sunday as if it is the last race of my life.”

Finally, newly minted Japanese half marathon record holder Hitomi Niiya, who blitzed to a 1:06:38 victory in Houston last weekend, will run as a pacemaker. 

(01/24/2020) ⚡AMP
by World Athletics
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Osaka International Womens Marathon

Osaka International Womens Marathon

The Osaka International Ladies Marathon is an annual marathon road race for women over the classic distance of 42.195 kilometres which is held on the 4th or 5th Sunday of January in the city of Osaka, Japan, and hosted by Japan Association of Athletics Federations, Kansai Telecasting Corporation, the Sankei Shimbun, Sankei Sports, Radio Osaka and Osaka City. The first...

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Two Canadian elites will be on the start line of the 2020 Boston Marathon

The 2020 Boston Marathon announced its elite lineup on Wednesday morning, and 2018 third-place finisher Krista DuChene, 43, is on the list. DuChene will be returning for her third consecutive Boston Marathon.

DuChene had a strong 2019, with her most recent result coming from the Berlin Marathon, where she won the masters race in 2:32:27–her fastest marathon time since 2015.

The new qualification system for the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games allows athletes who’ve placed in the top 10 at a World Major to be considered for entry. If DuChene can have a good day, her placing in Boston could also place her in the conversation for Olympic team selection. The team will be selected at the end of May, only six weeks after the Boston Marathon.

Other women on the elite list are Worknesh Degefa (2:17:41), Des Linden (2:22:38), Edna Kiplagat (2:19:50) and Magdalyne Masai, whose personal best 2:22:16 was from her victory at Toronto in 2019.

In the men’s race, Dylan Wykes, the fifth-fastest Canadian marathoner of all time, will also be on the start line. The former professional runner has been making his way onto the elite scene for the past year and a half. The race that really caught people’s attention was when he became the Canadian 10K champion in 2019.

Other elites to watch are Lawrence Cherono (2:04:06), Lelisa Desisa (2:04:45) and Philemon Rono (a.k.a Baby Police), the three-time STWM champion and Canadian all-comers record-holder, who holds a personal best of 2:05:00.

(01/23/2020) ⚡AMP
by Madeleine Kelly
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Boston Marathon

Boston Marathon

The 124th Boston Marathon originally scheduled for April 20, is now postponed to September 14 due to the coronavirus outbreak, Boston Marathon is the world's oldest annual marathon and ranks as one of the world's best-known road racing events. The event attracts 500,000 spectators each year, making it New England's most widely viewed sporting event. Though starting with 18 participants...

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The 2020 Humana Rock ‘n’ Roll® Arizona Marathon and half will feature a World Class Field

The 2020 Humana Rock ‘n’ Roll® Arizona Marathon & ½ Marathon will feature a world-class group of elite men and women going toe to toe on Sunday, Jan. 19 throughout  Phoenix, Scottsdale and Tempe, Arizona. With over 120 elite-runners registered, the field will be one of the largest in the event’s history and offer an $18,500 prize purse. Given the depth of the elite field, both the marathon and half marathon races will showcase one of the year’s first and most competitive races in the Rock ‘n’ Roll Marathon Series®.

Many of the elite athletes will be using the Humana Rock ‘n’ Roll Marathon and ½ Marathon to qualify for the 2020 U.S. Olympic Team, while others that have already qualified will be utilizing the race as a tune-up before the U.S. Olympic Team Trials taking place on February 29 in Atlanta, Ga.

Highlighting the men’s field of Olympic hopefuls is top American runner from the 2019 Boston Marathon, Scott Fauble (Flagstaff, Ariz.). Throughout 2019, Fauble was labeled the 2nd fastest U.S. Marathoner and a favorite to make the U.S. Olympic team. Alongside him on race day will be Scott Smith (Flagstaff, Ariz.), previous winner of the 2016 Rock ‘n’ Roll San Diego Half Marathon.

In addition, 2019 Humana Rock ‘n’ Roll Arizona Half Marathon Champion Daniel Mesfun (Eritrea) returns to defend his title in 2020. Other men to watch include Steve Hallman (Des Moines, Iowa), fresh off a personal best marathon time of 2:22:03 at the 2019 Berlin Marathon; Jimmy Stevenson (Lansdale, Penn.), who set his personal best time of 2:23:17 at the 2018 California International Marathon; and Brendan Sage (St. Michael, Minn.), winner of the 2019 Fargo Half Marathon will look to qualify for the Olympic Trials in his first marathon attempt in Arizona on Sunday.  

Leading the women’s field at this year’s event will be 2019 U.S. Half Marathon Champion Steph Bruce (Flagstaff, Ariz.). Bruce is an endurance athlete well-known around the country, as she’s also the 2018 10K Road National Champion and finished 6th in the 2019 Chicago Marathon. Kellyn Taylor (Flagstaff, Ariz.) will also be in attendance, representing the women’s field at this year’s event.

Taylor was the winner of the 2018 Rock ‘n’ Roll Las Vegas Half Marathon with a time of 1:10:14. Other women to watch include: Samantha Diaz, Boise (Boise, Idaho) set a personal best at the 2019 Chicago Marathon with a time of 2:40: 59 and Bridget Belyeu (Newman, Ga.), whose pedigree includes a 2:31:00 at the 2018 California International Marathon, has already qualified for the Olympic Trials, but look to use the Humana Rock ‘n’ Roll Arizona Half Marathon to tune-up for the upcoming trials. 

(01/16/2020) ⚡AMP
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Rock N Roll Arizona Marathon

Rock N Roll Arizona Marathon

The Marathon and Half-Marathon courses or the new Mini- Marathon or Bike Tour courses take you through the three host cities of Phoenix, Scottsdale and Tempe! The Marathon and Bike Tour start at CityScape in downtown Phoenix, while the Half-Marathon and Mini-Marathon are loop courses launching from downtown Tempe. All the courses end in Tempe at ASU’s Sun Devil and...

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2020 London Marathon features a strong line up, but it's missing the one match up we really wanted to see, Kipchoge-Bekele

Eliud Kipchoge announced in December that he would be running the 2020 London Marathon but until today it was not known who he would face. It turns out that the men’s lineup is almost as strong as the women’s but is missing one key player: Kenenisa Bekele.

Bekele finished the 2019 Berlin Marathon race just two seconds shy of Kipchoge’s world record, and seeing the two race head-to-head would’ve been special.

The 2020 London Marathon will see the entire podium from the 2019 race returning. They announced on Tuesday morning that Mosinet Geremew and Mule Wasihun, the Ethiopian duo, would be vying for first place again in 2020.

The 2019 event saw a fast finish–one of the fastest ever, with both second and third place finishing in PBs. Kipchoge finished in 2:02:37, just over a minute off his world record.

Since London 2019, Kipchoge became the first person to run a sub-two-hour marathon at the INEOS 1:59 Challenge. Through halfway, the runners were right on pace, coming through at 59:35, well ahead of Kipchoge’s 59:57 half at Breaking2 in 2017. The runner clicked off 1K splits like a metronome, never deviating from his 2:50 pace by more than two seconds. He finished in 1:59:40.

(01/15/2020) ⚡AMP
by Madeleine Kelly
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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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World record holder Brigid Kosgei will defend her title at the Virgin Money London Marathon

The 25-year-old Kenyan broke Paula Radcliffe’s 16-year-old marathon world record at the Bank of America Chicago Marathon last October clocking an incredible time of 2:14:04. The record-breaking run came six months after Kosgei won the London Marathon for the first time.

“I am very much looking forward to returning to the Virgin Money London Marathon," Kosgei said. "Last year was an incredible year for me and it started by winning in London. Coming back will be very special and I hope it can be the start of another memorable year.”

Brigid Kosgei is joined in the elite women’s field by a stellar list of rivals, four of whom have also run sub-2:19 marathons.

The list includes 2018 London Marathon winner Vivian Cheruiyot of Kenya, three-time BMW Berlin Marathon champion Gladys Cherono of Kenya, 2019 Valencia Marathon champion Roza Dereje of Ethiopia and the reigning world champion Ruth Chepngetich, also from Kenya.

Also on the start line will be the world half marathon record holder and 2019 TCS New York City Marathon champion Joyciline Jepkosgei who is joint top of the Abbott World Marathon Majors (AWMM) Series XIII leaderboard alongside Kosgei and Chepngetich.

The London elite men's field will be announced on Tuesday 14 January and the complete fields announced on Friday 17 January.

(01/13/2020) ⚡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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72-year-old Dennis Moore goal is to Complete All six Major World Marathons by 2021

"I've been an off-and-on jogger for most of my adult life," Dennis Moore says. 

It all started 12 years ago after Roger Robinson moved in down the street, and the two started running together. 

"And I finally got to the point where I said 'maybe I should try some sort of competition,'" Moore said.

As his 2015 new year's resolution, he decided to try and qualify for the Boston Marathon.  He asked Robinson to train him   

After some convincing, Robinson agreed to train him. Moore ran the Boston Marathon in 2018, and since then, he's run five others, 11 total. His most recent challenge is running all the Marathon Majors. 

"I've run three marathon majors; [the] New York City marathon, [the] Boston Marathon, and the Berlin marathon — which I ran last year. It's sort of a bizarre pursuit for someone my age but I thoroughly enjoy it. I train very hard because I like the competition," Moore said.

He is well on his way to completing the marathon majors. He's set to run the Tokyo marathon March 1 and the Chicago Marathon in the fall. If all goes according to his plan, he'll be done with all six by spring 2021.

(01/11/2020) ⚡AMP
by Arin Cotel-Altman
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Tokyo Marathon

Tokyo Marathon

The Tokyo Marathon is an annual marathon sporting event in Tokyo, the capital of Japan. It is an IAAF Gold Label marathon and one of the six World Marathon Majors. (2020) The Tokyo Marathon Foundation said it will cancel the running event for non-professional runners as the coronavirus outbreak pressures cities and institutions to scrap large events. Sponsored by Tokyo...

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Former Marathon World Record holder Wilson Kipsang banned in doping case

Wilson Kipsang, a former marathon world-record holder and Olympic bronze medalist, was provisionally suspended for whereabouts failures and tampering, according to doping officials.

The ban came from the Athletics Integrity Unit, track and field’s doping watchdog organization. Athletes must provide doping officials with locations to be available for out-of-competition testing, and missed tests can be tantamount to failed tests.

Kipsang, a 37-year-old Kenyan, won major marathons in New York City, London, Berlin and Tokyo between 2012 and 2017.

He lowered the world record to 2:03:23 at the 2013 Berlin Marathon, a mark that stood for one year until countryman Dennis Kimetto took it to 2:02:57 in Berlin. Another Kenyan, Eliud Kipchoge, lowered it to 2:01:39 at the 2018 Berlin Marathon.

Kipsang, the 2012 Olympic bronze medalist, last won a top-level marathon in Tokyo in 2017. He was third at the 2018 Berlin Marathon and 12th at his last marathon in London last April.

Kipsang is the latest Kenyan distance-running star to receive a doping-related ban.

Rita Jeptoo had Boston and Chicago Marathon titles stripped, and Jemima Sumgong was banned after winning the Rio Olympic marathon after both tested positive for EPO. Asbel Kiprop, a 2008 Olympic 1500m champion and a three-time world champ, was banned four years after testing positive for EPO in November 2017.

(01/10/2020) ⚡AMP
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Luca Naso plans to run the entire coast and perimeter of Italy, the islands of Sicily and Sardinia included starting January 1 because he believes in the value of dreams

As the first rays of sun timidly wash over the eastern Sicilian city of Catania on January 1, Luca Naso will be lacing up his running shoes and heading out the door for an easy 15 kilometer run.

While there is nothing particularly eventful in Luca’s choice to run while the rest of the city (and country) sleeps off the festivities of the night before, it will not be his only run of the day. He will run another 15 kilometers again later in the day, starting from where he left off in the morning, sleeping in Riposto, a seaside village 30 kilometers north of Catania. 

As far as New Year’s resolutions go, Luca’s is an ambitious one: he plans to run the entire coast and perimeter of Italy, the islands of Sicily and Sardinia included, for a total of 8,800 kilometers (5,468 miles), running 15 kilometers twice a day, for a total of 30 kilometers a day, six days a week.

“I’m not sure how the idea of this challenge came about, but since it was born, it has only grown day by day to become a real dream”, said Luca. “I decided to do it because I believe in the value of dreams and I am convinced that knowing your dreams and making efforts to make them come true will make us better people.”

Naso, 38, is a prominent astro-physicist who caught the running bug in 2008 and has since run four marathons, including the Berlin Marathon and Beijing Marathon.  It was while working in China that Naso met his wife, Yan Yan, who will accompany him on bike as far as Messina, approximately 90 kilometers north of Catania.

Luca’s plan is to circle Sicily (counter-clockwise) and then cross over to Calabria where he will start his run along the perimeter of the boot, running counter-clockwise from the southern regions during the winter months. If his calculations go according to plan, he plans to reach Rome by September 2020.

And while Luca is being assisted by a technical team that includes a coach, nutritionist and doctor, the logistical and organizational aspects of Naso’s endeavor are complicated, as his daily needs of lodging, food, transportation of luggage and other equipment will be in different towns and cities every day of the year.

“I hope that all of the passion that I am putting into this challenge can motivate other people to realize their dreams” said Naso. 

Luca can be followed on the following Link:

https://www.facebook.com/correreaiconfini/

(12/30/2019) ⚡AMP
by carla Van Kampen reporting from Rome
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Bristol man Alan Smith, completed the 2019 Berlin marathon just months after abdominal surgery

A Bristol handyman, who was running again less than three weeks after abdominal surgery, has raised £1,600 for Prostate Cancer UK by successfully completing his first marathon.

Alan Smith, from Stoke Gifford, is a member of the Frampton Cotterell Harriers and he completed the Berlin marathon in four hours and 21 minutes, barely four months after hernia repair surgery at Emersons Green NHS Treatment Center.

He said: “In 2011 I experienced my first hernia. The type of work I do involves a lot of heavy lifting, which damaged the left side of my abdomen. My GP sent me, under the NHS, to the treatment center.

“I could not speak highly enough of the care I received. I was back working within three weeks, which is really important when you are self-employed.”

When Mr Smith then experienced the symptoms on the other side of his abdomen, he decided he once again wanted to be treated at Emersons Green.

He said: “It was painful both when working and running. I didn’t want to let down my customers and I also had my place in the Berlin marathon. We all know people who have been affected by prostate cancer and I really wanted to do my part and raise money for the charity that carries out vital research and supports people living with the condition.”

Because he needed the operation quickly, Mr Smith chose to use Care UK’s Self Pay option, guaranteeing treatment within four weeks of referral.

He said: “When you are self-employed there is a risk you will lose more money because you are unable to work. This option would, hopefully, get me back to work as soon as possible and greatly increase my chance of making it to Berlin.

"I actually had my operation only nine days after my initial assessment, which was amazing” 

The operation, which went smoothly, was carried out by consultant general surgeon Paula Sabino dos Santos.

Mr Smith said: “We talked about my ambition to get to the marathon. She told me to start walking as soon as possible and to keep taking long walks to build up my strength, which I did.

“The first time I took some running steps I did it with a degree of trepidation, but it was absolutely fine. I did a couple of training sessions with the Harriers before completing a half marathon just three weeks after the operation. I was also back to light work within the same time.

“I promised Mrs dos Santos that I would send her photos from Berlin if I made it, and I was delighted to be able to send her photos of me wearing my finishers medal. I was very grateful to her and her team; I could not have asked for better treatment.”

(12/24/2019) ⚡AMP
by Nathalie Gannon
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BMW Berlin Marathon

BMW Berlin Marathon

2020 Marathon has been cancelled. The story of the BERLIN-MARATHON is a story of the development of road running. When the first BERLIN-MARATHON was started on 13th October 1974 on a minor road next to the stadium of the organisers‘ club SC Charlottenburg Berlin 286 athletes had entered. The first winners were runners from Berlin: Günter Hallas (2:44:53), who...

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Des Linden will race the U.S. Olympic Trials and the Boston Marathon in 2020

Des Linden was undecided whether to race the Feb. 29 U.S. Olympic Marathon Trials as recently as a month ago. But now Linden, the 2018 Boston Marathon winner, is not only committed to trials but also the April 20 Boston Marathon.

It would be, at 51 days, by far her shortest break between marathons, which has so far included 19 marathons dating to 2007. She’s 36 years old, and it may be her last Olympic cycle.

“I only have so many more chances at Boston. I love being there. Obviously, the Olympics [window] is closing down as well,” she said. “I like the trials and the competitive way we pick our team. I can’t imagine, at this point, watching either of those races and feeling like I had no effect on either outcome.”

If Linden does make the Olympic marathon team — by placing top three at trials in Atlanta — she would be in line to race four marathons over a little more than nine months when including last month’s New York City Marathon.

Ethiopian Lelisa Desisa and American Sara Hall ran the New York City Marathon on Nov. 3, 29 days and 35 days, respectively, after racing the world championships and Berlin Marathon. Neither finished New York, however.

This past August, when Linden committed to the New York City Marathon, she added that she might not race the trials. After her performance in New York — the top U.S. woman in sixth place — she decided she was ready for the trials-Boston double, which she had been considering since placing fifth at this past April’s Boston Marathon.

As far as how it will impact her trials build-up, Linden said her team will re-evaluate the process weekly. She hasn’t committed to a pre-trials half marathon.

“We’re obviously aware of what’s down the line, so we’re trying to get as much quality as we can without going too deep into the well,” she said. “It’s certainly going to be out there, but we’re trying to run well at both and not say, ‘This isn’t going well,’ and just train through it.”

Linden has been treating every marathon as if it could be her last. She has been incredibly consistent, placing no worse than eighth in her last 11 marathon starts dating to 2013.

Neither of Linden’s previous Olympic experiences was especially memorable. She dropped out of her first one in 2012 with a stress fracture in her femur. She was seventh in Rio, missing a medal by less than two minutes. The Kenyan-born gold and silver medalists were later busted for EPO and are serving lengthy doping bans.

“I don’t feel like I have anything to prove and anything unfinished,” at the Olympics, Linden said in August. “Quite frankly, the last experience is a hard sell to get back out there to try to compete for medals when you’re not even really sure what the field is all about. It’s a little bit difficult to be excited about that with the way we are about the [World Marathon] Majors. People investing in anti-doping have really been solving that problem [at the majors]. It’s a little tricky [at the Olympics], but certainly representing your country is special.”

Linden is the most experienced of a deep group of U.S. Olympic marathon hopefuls after the recent retirement of four-time Olympian Shalane Flanagan.

(12/17/2019) ⚡AMP
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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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Nike’s Fastest Shoes May Give Runners an Even Bigger Advantage Than First Thought

Anyone who saw Eliud Kipchoge of Kenya break the two-hour marathon barrier in October very likely saw something else, too: the thick-soled Nike running shoes on his feet, and, in a blaze of pink, on the feet of the pacers surrounding him.

These kinds of shoes from Nike — which feature carbon plates and springy midsole foam — have become an explosive issue among runners, as professional and amateur racers alike debate whether the shoes save so much energy that they amount to an unfair advantage.

A new analysis by The New York Times, an update of the one conducted last summer, suggests that the advantage these shoes bestow is real — and larger than previously estimated.

At the moment, they appear to be among only a handful of popular shoes that matter at all for race performance, and the gap between them and the next-fastest popular shoe has only widened.

We found that a runner wearing the most popular versions of these shoes available to the public — the Zoom Vaporfly 4% or ZoomX Vaporfly Next% — ran 4 to 5 percent faster than a runner wearing an average shoe, and 2 to 3 percent faster than runners in the next-fastest popular shoe. (There was no meaningful difference between the Vaporfly and Next% shoes when we measured their effects separately. We have combined them in our estimates.)

This difference is not explained by faster runners choosing to wear the shoes, by runners choosing to wear them in easier races or by runners switching to the shoes after running more training miles. In a race between two marathoners of the same ability, a runner wearing these shoes would have a significant advantage over a competitor not wearing them.

The shoes, which retail for $250, confer an advantage on all kinds of runners: men and women, fast runners and slower ones, hobbyists and frequent racers.

Many other brands, including Brooks, Saucony, New Balance, Hoka One One and Asics, have introduced similar shoes to the market or plan to. These shoes may provide the same advantage or an even larger one, but most do not yet appear in sufficient numbers in our data to measure their effectiveness.

What makes these shoes different is, among other things, a carbon-fiber plate in the midsole, which stores and releases energy with each stride and is meant to act as a kind of slingshot, or catapult, to propel runners. The shoes also feature midsole foam that researchers say contributes to increased running economy.

Whether the shoes violate rules from track’s governing body, World Athletics, depends on how one interprets this sentence from its rulebook: “Shoes must not be constructed so as to give athletes any unfair assistance or advantage.” It does not specify what such an advantage might be.

“We need evidence to say that something is wrong with a shoe,” a spokesman for the governing body, then called the I.A.A.F., told The Times last year. “We’ve never had anyone bring some evidence to convince us.”

In an announcement earlier this year, the group said, “It is clear that some forms of technology would provide an athlete with assistance that runs contrary to the values of the sport.” It has since appointed a technical committee to study the shoe question, and to make a report with recommendations. (The report was originally intended to be released to the public by the end of the year; it will now reportedly be released in 2020.)

When we asked Nike last year about whether its shoes might violate I.A.A.F. rules, a spokesman said the shoe “meets all I.A.A.F. product requirements and does not require any special inspection or approval.”

Last Thursday, the company said in a statement, “We respect the I.A.A.F. and the spirit of their rules, and we do not create any running shoes that return more energy than the runner expends.”

There is no such thing as a large-scale randomized control trial for marathons and shoes, but there is Strava, a fitness app that calls itself the social network for athletes. Nearly each weekend, thousands of runners compete in races, record their performance data on satellite watches or smartphones, and upload their race data to the app. This data includes things like a race name, finish time, per-mile splits and overall elevation profile. And about one in four races includes self-reported information about a runner’s shoes.

In all, this data includes race results from about 577,000 marathons and 496,000 half marathons in dozens of countries from April 2014 to December 2019.

How we measured the shoes’ effect

[These approaches are essentially identical to the ones The Times used last summer. See that article for more examples and methodological details.]

We measured the shoes’ performance using four different methods — each with its own strengths and flaws:

1. Using statistical models2. Studying groups of runners who ran the same pair of races3. Following runners as they switch shoes4. Measuring the likelihood of a personal record in a pair of shoes

None of these approaches are perfect, but they all point to the same conclusion: Something is happening in races with the Vaporfly and Nike Next% shoes that is not happening with most any other kind of popular shoe.

Besides race times and the names of shoes, we also have data on runners’ gender and approximate age. For some of the more serious runners, we have detailed information about their training volume in the months leading up to a race. We also know about the weather on race day.

When we put this information into a statistical model, times associated with Vaporfly and Next% shoes are a clear outlier — about 2 percent faster than with the next-fastest shoe. The model estimates the effect of wearing these shoes compared with the effect of wearing other shoes.

No statistical model is perfect, and it’s possible that runners who choose to wear Vaporfly or Next% shoes are somehow different from runners who do not. Regardless of the decisions that went into this model — even when trying to control for runners’ propensity to wear the shoes in the first place — the outputs were similar.

Strava is very popular among runners. At last year’s Berlin Marathon, for example, more than 10,000 runners uploaded race information to Strava, and this year, more than 14,000 did. Crucially for our purposes, about a thousand of those runners ran both races, and a subset of them reported racing in different shoes.

We could then examine the change in performance of two similar runners — people with similar race performances and, ideally, training regimens — and compare the improvement of a runner who switched shoes with a runner who did not. In Berlin, runners who switched to Vaporfly or Next% shoes improved their times more than runners who did not, on average.

For two athletes and a single pair of races, this might not tell us much. But in our data, there are thousands of instances when pairs of runners ran in the same two races.

When we perform this calculation for every pair of races in our data and measure the effect of switching to any kind of popular shoe, we see that runners who switch to these Nike shoes improved significantly more than runners who switched to any other kind of shoe. No other shoe comes close to having the same effect.

More than 110,000 athletes uploaded data for more than one marathon, and about 47,000 uploaded data for three or more marathons. The Strava data allows us to follow these repeat racers over time and as they change shoes.

When we aggregate the change in race times for runners the first time they switch to a new pair of shoes, runners who switched to Vaporflys or Next% shoes improved their times more than runners who switched to any other kind of popular shoe.

Race times are, in many ways, a crude way to measure performance. One marathon may be hilly or full of sharp turns; others may be flat and straight. Weather, too, is important, with higher temperatures typically resulting in slower times. And yet race times are how runners qualify for prestigious races, like the Boston Marathon, and most runners know their personal best times by heart, regardless of whether the race they ran was flat or hilly, on a hot day or a cold one.

We can follow the runners in our data with this measure in mind, testing whether a runner’s fastest time is more likely when he or she switches to any kind of shoe.

Someone can run a personal best for all kinds of reasons unrelated to shoes. A runner may train more, execute a better strategy on race day or run an easier course. Regardless, we found that runners who switched to these shoes were more likely to run their fastest race than runners who switched to any other kind of popular shoe.

(12/16/2019) ⚡AMP
by Kevin Qealy and Josh Katz
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Eliud Kipchoge will defend his title at the 2020 London Marathon

World Athlete of the Year Eliud Kipchoge will defend his title at the 2020 Virgin Money London Marathon, a World Athletics Platinum event, set to take place in the British capital on 26 April.

Kipchoge, who earlier this year became the first person to cover 42.195km within two hours, has his sights set on continuing his incredible streak of record-breaking performances at what will be the 40th edition of the London Marathon.

In September last year he set an official world record of 2:01:39 in Berlin, then in April earlier this year he smashed his own course record to win in London in 2:02:37. The Olympic champion from Kenya will be aiming to become the first person to win five London Marathon titles.

Kipchoge is currently tied with Ingrid Kristiansen in the London Marathon history books for the most wins by an able-bodied athlete. The Norwegian great won four London Marathon titles between 1984 and 1988.

If Kipchoge continues his unbeaten run at the London Marathon next April – where he won in 2015, 2016, 2018 and 2019 – he will surpass Kristiansen’s tally.

“I am delighted to be returning to the Virgin Money London Marathon in 2020,” said Kipchoge. “I love running in London where the crowd support is always wonderful. Breaking the two-hour barrier in Vienna was an incredible moment. It showed that no human is limited and that is a belief that continues to drive me on to set new objectives.

“Making history in London is my next target. I am proud that I am currently the only male able-bodied athlete to have won this great race four times and that no one, male or female, has won it more than that.

“Eliud Kipchoge is the greatest marathon runner of all time,” said event director Hugh Brasher. “Eliud’s belief that no human is limited resonated with millions in every walk of life and we are delighted that this extraordinary and truly inspirational man will be part of the 40th race.”

Kipchoge was given the highest honour of Kenya following his performance in Vienna, the Elder of the Order of the Golden Heart of Kenya (EGH).

As well as his four Virgin Money London Marathon titles and the Olympic gold medal he won in Rio in 2016, Kipchoge has also won the Berlin Marathon on three occasions and the Chicago Marathon once. In addition, he has won the overall Abbott World Major Marathon series titles four times.

He is the first of the elite runners to be announced for the 2020 Virgin Money London Marathon. Further names will be revealed in January.

 

(12/15/2019) ⚡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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15 Mind-Blowing Race Moments From 2019-From Kipchoge to Kosgei and all of the upsets, records, and victories in between, 2019 was a major year for running.

1-Kosgei Shocks Everyone in Chicago-On October 13, Brigid Kosgei made history when she won the Chicago Marathon in 2:14:04. The Kenyan ran almost perfectly even splits to achieve her goal in the Windy City, passing the halfway mark in 1:06:59 before clocking 1:07:05 for the second half.

2-Eliud Kipchoge Dips Under 2-Hour Marathon Barrier-In his second attempt at breaking the two-hour barrier in the marathon, Eliud Kipchogeof Kenya accomplished the feat with a stunning run of 1:59:40 on the streets of Vienna in October.

3-Joan Samuelson Crushes Her Goal 40 Years After Boston Victory-In 1979, Joan Benoit Samuelson set a national and course record when she won the Boston Marathon as a 21-year-old college student. Forty years after her historic victory, Samuelson, 61, set out to run within 40 minutes of her winning time at the 2019 Boston Marathon. On April 15, the 1984 Olympic champion wore a similar Bowdoin College singlet to honor her 1979 win and shattered her goal, crossing the finish line in 3:04. “To be here, 40 years later and being able to run, let alone being able to run a marathon, I feel blessed,” she said.

4-Jim Walmsley Obliterates His Own Western States Record-Ultrarunning star Jim Walmsley maintained his Western States winning streak when he obliterated his own course record in June. Navigating 100 miles from Squaw Valley to Auburn, California, Walmsley broke the tape in 14 hours and 9 minutes, which broke his own course record by more than 20 minutes

5-Donavan Brazier Breaks 34-Year-Old American Record-Donavan Brazier had the race of his life when he broke one of the oldest American records on his way to winning gold in the 800 meters at the IAAF World Championshipsin Doha, Qatar. With 250-meters to go, Brazier ran away from the field to secure the first 800-meter world championship gold medal for the United States in a time of 1:42.34. 

6-Dalilah Muhammad Sets World Record Twice-Dalilah Muhammad made history twice this season when she broke the 400-meter hurdles world record and lowered it once again on her way to winning the world championships.

7-Sifan Hassan Wins Unprecedented Double at Worlds-At the IAAF World Championships in Doha, Sifan Hassan won two gold medals that no man or woman has achieved in the history of the world championships or Olympic Games. The Dutch runner, 26, kicked off the competition by winning the 10,000-meter final in a national record time of 30:17:33. 

8-Maggie Guterl Becomes First Woman to Win Backyard Ultra-For 60 hours straight, Maggie Guterl ran the same 4.2-mile trail loop to become the last runner standing in the Big’s Backyard Ultra race. The Durango, Colorado, native ran 250 miles on her way to becoming the first woman to win the brutal race that rewards the person who can run for the longest amount of time.

9-Geoffrey Kamworor Breaks Half Marathon World Record-Holding a 4:25-mile pace, Geoffrey Kamworor of Kenya shattered the world record at the Copenhagen Half Marathon in September, running 58:01. The performance, which was 17 seconds faster than the previous record, took place in the same city where the 26-year-old won his first of three half marathon world championship titles in 2014.

10-Joyciline Jepkosgei Debuts in NYC Marathon, Beats Mary Keitany-In her first marathon, Joyciline Jepkosgei of Kenya secured a title in a major upset. The half marathon world record-holder raced like a veteran in the New York City Marathonto beat four-time champion Mary Keitany in a winning time of 2:22:38, only seven seconds shy of the course record.

11-Kenenisa Bekele Wins Berlin Marathon 2 Seconds Shy of World Record-One year after Eliud Kipchoge set a world record that many believed would be untouchable for at least a few years, Kenenisa Bekele nearly surpassed it at the Berlin Marathon. The 37-year-old Ethiopian won the race in 2:01:41, just two seconds shy of Kipchoge’s record. 

12-Freshman Sha’Carri Richardson Shatters 100-meter Collegiate Record-In her first ever NCAA Outdoor Championship, Sha’Carri Richardson made history. In the 100-meter final, the LSU freshman sprinted to victory in a collegiate record of 10.75.

13-Drew Hunter, Athing Mu, and Colleen Quigley Win First Pro Titles-The USATF Indoor Championships brought out exciting breakthroughs for three young athletes. In the men’s 2-mile, 21-year-old Drew Hunter won the crown out of the “slower” heat by running a world-best time of 8:25.29. The women’s 600 meters was won by 16-year-old Athing Mu who defeated world silver medalist Raevyn Rogers in an American record time of 1:23.57.

14-BYU Snaps NAU’s Winning Streak at the NCAA Cross Country Championships-The Brigham Young team had a banner day at the NCAA Cross Country Championshipsin November. Battling muddy conditions, the BYU Cougars secured the team victory over three-time defending champions Northern Arizona in the men’s race. With a team total of 109 points, BYU beat NAU by 54 points to win the program’s first NCAA cross-country championship in history.

15-Joshua Cheptegei Sets 10K World Record After Winning Two World Titles-Joshua Cheptegei of Uganda capped off a banner year when he set a world record in the 10K on December 1, running 26:38 to win the 10K Valencia Trinidad Alfonso in Valencia, Spain. Earlier this year, he won the world cross-country championships and the world championship 10,000 meters in Doha, Qatar.

 

(12/15/2019) ⚡AMP
by Runner’s World
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Pacer Wins Abu Dhabi Marathon by 2 Minutes, Takes Home $100,000

Though he was supposed to drop out at 30K, Reuban Kipyego went on to break the tape in 2:04:40.

Reuban Kipyego took his pacing duties an unexpected step further when he won the Abu Dhabi Marathon on Friday, December 6.

As the designated runner who was tasked with pacing the elite field through a specific point in the race, the 23-year-old Kenyan was expected to drop out around 30K. But Kipyego kept running all the way through the finish line, breaking the tape in a time of 2:04:40.

The pacemaker turned champion beat runner-up Joel Kimurer by a minute and 41 seconds. As the marathon champion, Kipyego earned $100,000 in prize money.

“I was setting the pace for the first 30K feeling very good, and when I turned back to see that the pack was not close behind, I decided that I was going to push to the finish line,” Kipyego told race organizers after his victory.

Kipyego ran faster for the second half of the race after leading the field through 13.1 miles in 1:02:54. The performance improves on his previous personal best of 2:05:18 from a runner-up finish in his debut at the Buenos Aires Marathon on September 22.

Though his action was rare, Kipyego was not the first pacemaker to keep running all the way through the finish line.

In 1994, Paul Pilkington was hired as the rabbit to lead the elite field through 15.5 miles of the Los Angeles Marathon, but he continued on for the entire 26.2, winning the race in 2:12:13. Simon Biwott was supposed to lead the runners through 28K of the 2000 Berlin Marathon, but he ended up leading right through the line, winning in 2:07:42.

In his second pro race, Geoffrey Ronoh upset then-world record-holder Wilson Kipsang at the 2014 Olomouc Half Marathon. Instead of stopping at 10K, the pacemaker won in a course record 1:00:17.

For runners who are on the bubble of winning podium prize money, signing on to be a pacemaker in a large race is an easy way to earn guaranteed payment. While they are expected to drop out before the race ends—and most do—they are allowed to finish the race if they choose to.

“For me, the conditions were ideal and the course was beautiful,” Kipyego told the race organizers. “I’m already looking forward to returning to Abu Dhabi to defend my title.”

(12/07/2019) ⚡AMP
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ADNOC Abu Dhabi Marathon

ADNOC Abu Dhabi Marathon

The Abu Dhabi Marathon is shaping up to being first class marathon for both elite runners and average runners as well. Take in the finest aspects of Abu Dhabi's heritage, modern landmarks and the waters of the Arabian Gulf, at this world-class athletics event, set against the backdrop of the Capital's stunning architecture.The race offered runners of all abilities the...

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Ethiopia’s Mulu Seboka will take on the in-form Celestine Chepchirchir of Kenya at the Guangzhou Marathon, a World Athletics Gold Label road race, on Sunday

The Prolific Ethiopian racer, who will compete in her fifth marathon of the year, owns the fastest personal best in the field at 2:21:56 set in Dubai four years ago. The 35-year-old competed in the southern Chinese city in 2016 and finished second in 2:32:26.

Seboka, a past Dubai Marathon, has a season’s best of 2:27:19 from her four marathons. She will obviously not be running with fresh legs in Guangzhou as her last race was just one week ago in Kunming, where she scored a 2:32:54 victory.

The rising Chepchirchir, 23, is the second fastest but the highest ranked (43) woman toeing the line. She knocked more than two minutes off her PB to finish third in Seoul in 2:24:48 nine months ago and went on to set a course record of 2:26:44 at the Cape Town Marathon in September.

Guangzhou will be her third race of the year and first time competing on Chinese soil.

Lilia Fisikovici of Moldova also improved lifetime best this April to 2:27:26 and has been pursuing her second international marathon title following her win in Krakow last April.

Other sub-2:30 runners in the field include two-time Daegu Marathon winner Pamela Rotich of Kenya who has a PB of 2:27:48, Ethiopia’s Hiwot Gebrekidan, who set a winning mark of 2:25:45 in See Genezareth two years ago, as well as Chinese duo Ding Changqin and He Yinli.

The men’s field is led by Kenya’s Eliud Kiptanui. The 30-year-old clocked a PB of 2:05:21 to finish second at the Berlin Marathon four years ago and has managed to run inside 2:10 every year since 2014. But the past winner in Ottawa and Prague has yet to break that barrier in 2019 as he only clocked a mediocre 2:14:15 to finish seventh in Xiamen in January and failed to finish in Taiyuan three months ago.

Kiptanui’s countryman Mike Kiptum took more than three minutes off his career best to finish third at Seoul Marathon in 2:06:22 in March, suggesting that the 27-year-old would be another serious candidate not only to win the title but also to rewrite the 2:10:01 course record set by Morocco’s Abdellah Tagharrafet in 2015.

The powerful Kenyan contingent also includes Felix Kirwa, whose PB of 2:06:13 was set in Eindhoven two years ago, and 31-year-old Josphat Letting, winner of the Tallinn Marathon in September.

Ethiopia’s Gebretsadik Abraha could be the biggest threat to the Kenyans. Although the 27-year-old achieved his 2:06:23 PB back in 2012, the consistent Abraha has maintained a high level of competitiveness, earning four podium finishes in his six races since 2017.

(12/06/2019) ⚡AMP
by World Athletics
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Guangzhou International Marathon

Guangzhou International Marathon

The Guangzhou Marathon was launched in 2012 and certified by CAA as the A level event. From 2014 to 2017,Guangzhou Marathon was recognized as the CAA Gold Medal Race for four consecutive years. The year of 2018 has seen this event was upgraded as IAAF Gold Label Road Race after it was awarded as IAAF Bronze and Silver Label Road...

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Olympic champion Vivian Cheruiyot believes a good performance in Valencia on Sunday will almost guarantee her a slot in the Kenya team for the Tokyo Olympic Games

Vivian Cheruiyot has finally shaken off a recurrent tendon injury, which ruled her out of the Berlin marathon in September. She will lead Kenya's legion to the Valencia marathon, her sixth race on the road, as she intends to push for a faster time.

"I will be running my sixth marathon on December 1 in Valencia. My training has gone on very well and I can feel my body is back in shape. It is not long to go now," Cheruiyot said on Friday in Nairobi.

With victories in London and Frankfurt, Cheruiyot will be pushing for her third win to supplement her collection so far.

"I know next year we have the Olympics and everyone is talking about it. I feel it is good to prove my fitness in Valencia and then see what will happen in 2020 in London or any other race I will run," she said. "The Olympics in August is still way ahead and I want to do my part and let the selectors do theirs."

Cheruiyot will face strong opposition from Ethiopians Roza Dereje and Birhane Dibaba, both of whom have broken the two-hour-20-minute barrier for the distance. Ethiopian Zeineba Yimer, who has clocked 65 minutes 46 seconds for the half marathon, makes her full marathon debut with Ethiopians Roza Dereje (2:19:17) and Birhane Dibaba (2:19:51) also jostling for the title.

(11/29/2019) ⚡AMP
by Shi Yinglun
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Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games

Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games

Fifty-six years after having organized the Olympic Games, the Japanese capital will be hosting a Summer edition for the second time, originally scheduled from July 24 to August 9, 2020, the games were postponed due to coronavirus outbreak, the postponed Tokyo Olympics will be held from July 23 to August 8 in 2021, according to the International Olympic Committee decision....

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How Kenyan athletes are paid millions in the Richest Marathons in the World

For most elite marathoners, there is more at stake than just the glory of winning the race.

For these professional athletes, for instance, Eliud Kipchoge, there is a huge prize for crossing the finish line ahead of everyone in marathons such as Berlin, Boston, Bank of America Chicago marathons among many others. (The current exchange rate is 102 Kenya shillings to one US dollar.) 

Here we take a look at some of the top few marathons over the world that offer the highest prize money to athletes.

1. Standard Chartered Dubai Marathon.- The Dubai Marathon is the world’s richest marathon with the most expensive prize money of Sh.20 ($196,000US) million for first place winners and an additional Sh.10 ($98,000US) million for marathon world record bonus.

In January of 2008, the Dubai Marathon was the richest long-distance running event in history.

The winners received Sh.25 ($245,000US) million (more than double any prize money to that date) and a million-dollar offer from Dubai Holding if they set a world best according to the Standard Chartered Dubai marathon website

Getaneh Molla of Ethiopia and Kenya’s Ruth Chepngetich won the 20th edition of the Standard Chartered Dubai Marathon.

2. Boston Marathon.- The Boston Marathon is the oldest marathon in the world established in 1887 by a non-profit organization with a mission of promoting a healthy lifestyle through sports, especially running. The top male and female finishers each receive Sh.15 ($145,000US) million with second place earning Sh.7.5 million and third takes home Sh.4 million according to Boston Marathon official website.

According to Forbes, there is a bonus prize of Sh.5 million for breaking the world's best time and Sh.2.5 for breaking the course record.

The most rewarded Boston runner of all time was four times champion Robert Kipkoech Cheruiyot, a Kenyan runner who has earned a total of Sh.46.9 ($450,000US) million from the Boston race alone.

3. TCS New York City Marathon.- The first NYC Marathon was held in 1970, entirely in Central Park, with only 127 entrants, 55 finishers and a lone female racer, who dropped out because of an illness, according to TCS New York City Marathon website.

Today the TCS New York City Marathon prize purse totals a guaranteed Sh.70.5 ($670,000US) million. The men’s and women’s champion receive Sh.10million each, with an extra Sh.5 million for a time of sub-2:05:30 (men) and sub-2:22:30 (women).

4. London Marathon.- The first London Marathon, held on 29 March 1981, finished on Constitution Hill between Green Park and Buckingham Palace.

According to World Marathon majors today, the race winner earns Sh.5.5 million with second place taking home Sh.3 million

There are also financial rewards for finishing under certain times, with these differing for men and women.

 5. Bank of America Chicago Marathon.- This coveted race is a showcase of some of the top marathoners.

The prize money for winning the 2015 race was Sh.10 million, plus Sh.7.5 million if you set a course record and time bonuses (non-cumulative) of Sh.5.5 and below according to the Bank of America Chicago Marathon official website

6. The Berlin Marathon.- The race was founded in 1974 by a Berlin baker, Horst Milde, who combined his passion for running with a family bread and cake business

According to the Berlin Marathon official website, the prize money is as follows;

26.45 million-plus bonuses in 2018. Expected to be similar in 2019.

First place male: 4.6 million (10 deep) in 2018

First place female: 4.6 million (10 deep) in 2018

Bonuses of Sh.5million. Time bonuses available for 1st and 2nd places only Sh.3 million for first place sub-2:04:00 men, sub-2:19:00 women.

7. Seoul International Marathon.- Celebrating its 85th year running, the Seoul Marathon in South Korea is one of the most prestigious races.

The champion male and female finishers get to bring home Sh.8 million provided that they finish under 2:10:00 and 2:24:00 respectively Sh.4 million if they do not meet the target time) according to World Marathons.

According to the Seoul International Marathon, the world record bonuses are Sh.5million for men and Sh.3 million for women.

There is also a time bonus of Sh. million for sub-2:04:00 (male) and sub-2:18:00 (female); and other time bonuses amounting down to Sh. 500000

8. Standard Chartered Nairobi Marathon.- Since the launch of the Marathon in 2003, only one winner has successfully defended their title. Every year the marathon produces new winners.

This year, the organizers increased the cash award for the 42km race prize money from Sh.1.5 million to Sh2million, according to the Standard Chartered Nairobi Marathon official website.

The half marathon price has also been increased to Sh300, 000 while the 10km race will see a cash award of Sh200, 000.

(11/19/2019) ⚡AMP
by Joshua Ondeke
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Standard Chartered Dubai Marathon

Standard Chartered Dubai Marathon

In its relatively brief history (the race was first held in 2000), the Standard Chartered Dubai Marathon has become one of the fastest, most respected and the most lucrative marathon in the world in terms of prize money. Each year thousands of runners take to the roads in this beautiful city in the United Arab Emirates for this extraordinary race...

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Olympic champion Vivian Cheruiyot is back in training after shaking off a recurrent tendon injury that has kept her off competition for over three months, but now is set for Valencia marathon

Cheruiyot, 36, has only run two races this year, as she finished second at the London Marathon behind compatriot and World marathon record holder Brigid Kosgei and won the Lisbon half marathon back in March.

She was due to a challenge for the Berlin marathon in September, but the injury stopped her. Now Cheruiyot believes she is back in form and will seek a good performance on her sixth marathon career in the Spanish city in Valencia on Dec. 1.

"I am back in training," said Cheruiyot on Friday. "The focus is to gauge the body and see good performance. The injury denied me a big opportunity in Berlin. It was frustrating after a lot of training, the injury flared up again."

The diminutive athlete has been seeking medication in Germany and Kenya and hopes her injury worries are over for the time being.

Cheruiyot will face strong opposition from Ethiopians Roza Dereje and Birhane Dibaba, both of whom have broken the two-hour-20-minute barrier for the distance.

Fellow Ethiopian Zeineba Yimer, who has clocked 65 minutes 46 seconds for the half marathon, makes her full marathon debut.

"At this stage of competition, there are no simple challenges. Everyone enters a race with the hope of winning. However, for me, I run my own race and my strength and inspiration is drawn from what I want to attain," she added.

Cheruiyot remains one of the top marathon women runners in the country and in contention to make the Kenya team to the 2020 Tokyo Olympic Games.

However, that will be dependent on her performance in Valencia and then next year in London.

Organizers of the Valencia marathon have also confirmed that the men's race will have former World Indoor bronze medalist Augustine Choge, who will be making his debut in the marathon. Choge had a false start in Chicago last year and pulled out after just 10km.

In Valencia, he hopes to make a new start in his quest to emulate his mentor and training mate World marathon record holder Eliud Kipchoge. Choge will battle it out with Ethiopians Getaneh Molla (2:03:34), Herpasa Negasa (2:03:40) and reigning champion Leul Gebrselassie (2:04:02).

In total, the men's race features 12 runners, who have run 2:06.00 personal best time and another 22 with a best time of two hours and 10 minutes.

(11/16/2019) ⚡AMP
by Mu Xuequan
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VALENCIA TRINIDAD ALFONSO MARATHON

VALENCIA TRINIDAD ALFONSO MARATHON

Sammy Kiprop Kitwara set a Spanish all-comers’ record at the 2017 Maraton Valencia Trinidad Alfonso, the 31-year-old Kenyan produced a 2:05:15 effort to finish almost a full minute inside the previous record, moving to seventh on this year’s world list in the process. Ethiopia’s Aberu Mekuria Zennebe won the women’s race in 2:26:17 to improve on her fourth-place finish from...

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At least US$2.5million in extra revenue will be made available for a comprehensive integrity programme for road running in 2020, under a new funding scheme announced by World Athletics and the Athletics Integrity Unit

World Athletics has today announced a schedule of more than 165 Label road events that will be held in 2020, including the first Platinum Label races.

Each race will contribute to the system approved by the World Athletics Council this year, by which the financial burden for out-of-competition drug testing is shared by all road race stakeholders – organisers, athlete managers and athletes.

Races will contribute according to their status: Platinum marathons $66,667, Gold marathons $15,000, Silver marathons $10,000 and Bronze marathons $5,000; Platinum road races $20,000, Gold road races $10,000, Silver road races $5,000 and bronze road races $2,500.

The list of Label events that will take place from January to September 2020 was released today. More races will be added when their race dates are confirmed. 

Their contributions, together with the fees managers pay for their athletes included in the testing pool – $500 for Gold status athletes and $1000 for Platinum – and the 1.5% levy on prize money that athletes agreed to contribute, make up the bulk of the fund. In all, that means some US$2.6 to 3.2 million in funding will be available in 2020. The programme, which includes out-of-competition testing, investigation and education, will be carried out by the Athletics Integrity Unit.

The list of Gold and Platinum status athletes for 2020, determined by their position in the world rankings, was also released today.

“This is a brilliant example of our key stakeholders coming together to protect the integrity of our sport,’’ World Athletics CEO Jon Ridgeon said. “I would like to thank our athletes, race directors and athlete managers for supporting this important scheme, which will greatly enhance the Athletics Integrity Unit’s efforts to ensure that all leading road runners are subject to a comprehensive anti-doping programme.’’

Under the previous system, the AIU and IAAF had funding to test just the first 50 athletes (the marathon and half marathon athletes) in the testing pool, which left an alarming shortfall in out-of-competition testing of athletes who compete on the rapidly expanding and increasingly lucrative road running circuit. World Athletics granted 103 races label status in 2017. That number grew to 114 in 2018 and 136 in 2019.

David Howman, Chairman of the Athletics Integrity Unit, said: “This is a great reflection on the commitment to integrity of the road running industry. It is encouraging that so many races, athletes and managers have signed up to make tangible financial contribution to address the challenges in a proactive manner. 

“With this new funding we will be able to put together a comprehensive integrity programme that will ensure that a level playing field can be enjoyed by all road runners. We are in advance stage of planning its implementation and this will begin with extensive education sessions this December in Ethiopia and Kenya, where a vast majority of the Platinum and Gold Label athletes are based.”

Platinum Label to debut in 2020.- The new Platinum Label races, first announced in 2018, will be introduced in 2020. Nine races have been granted Platinum status thus far, with up to three more late season races to be confirmed early next year.

Platinum Label races are required to have at least three athletes with Platinum Status, per gender, and at least four athletes with Gold Status (or higher) start the race and compete with a bonafide effort. (2020 Label Road Race regulations).

The number of Platinum Status athletes for 2020 will be fixed at 30 per gender and determined in a two-phase process. The first, based on positions in the world rankings on 15 October 2019, will include the top 19 ranked athletes in the 'marathon' event group, the top three ranked athletes in the 'road running' event group (excluding any athletes who acquired Platinum Status in the 'marathon' group) and the top ranked athlete in the '10,000m' event group (excluding any athletes who acquired Platinum Status in the 'marathon' and 'road running' event groups).

The second phase will add seven more athletes, per gender, based on positions in the world rankings on 28 January 2020: the top four ranked athletes in the 'marathon' group, the top two in the 'road running' group and the top one in the 10,000m event group who had not yet achieved Platinum Status.

World Athletics Platinum Label events, Tokyo Marathon, Nagoya Women’s Marathon, Seoul Marathon, BAA Boston Marathon, Virgin Money London Marathon, Media Maratón de Bogotá, BMW Berlin MarathonBank of America Chicago MarathonTCS New York City Marathon

(11/16/2019) ⚡AMP
by World Athletics
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Haji Adilo is the coach behind many of the world´s greatest runners

“This is very difficult work,” coach Haji Adilo says as we drive past an elderly woman toting a bundle of sticks on her back down Entoto Mountain in northern Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, on a Thursday morning. “She’ll probably only get a few hundred birr for this.” Then he pulls out a 100 birr note (a little more than $3) from his pocket and hands it to her through the window of his black Toyota.

Four-and-a-half hours earlier, as the sun was just beginning to rise, we were driving up the same mountain for a training session. Adilo, 44, was monitoring a different kind of difficult work — often glorified in Ethiopia: marathon running. Entoto Mountain stands around 10,000 feet and overlooks Ethiopia’s burgeoning capital city. It’s the highest nearby reachable point to push athletes to their peak endurance and part of the schematic planning that Adilo oversees as coach of Ethiopia’s preeminent marathon training group.

When we arrive, Adilo greets his two brothers and assistant coaches, Kassim and Moges, and his 100-plus athletes, taking the time to shake everyone’s hand individually and kiss each of them on the cheek. He then orders a one-hour-and-40-minute endurance run for most athletes and an easy 45-minute jog for those about to head out to the Berlin Marathon. Among the latter group is Kenenisa Bekele, who would win that week, two seconds shy of world-record time. Lelisa Desisa leads another pack, and two weeks later, he’d become the world champion in Doha, Qatar. Now Desisa is looking to defend his New York City Marathon title this weekend — requiring quick-turnaround training arguably more innovative than Eliud Kipchoge’s recent feat of finishing a marathon in under two hours.

As the athletes head off in single-file lines, zigzagging their way through the eucalyptus forest, Haji, Kassim and Moges jog next to each other, looking to spot their athletes, observe their form, talk strategy and share a few jokes.

Countless stars from Ethiopia throughout the last few decades have trained under the tutelage of the Adilo family, who, as former athletes, understand the slog. Thus, the brothers are constantly talking to their athletes and consulting with each other to see how each individual is feeling physically and emotionally.

“Our philosophy is structured around the athletes maintaining interest and excitement in the training,” Adilo says. “So one day we might go to Entoto for endurance training, but then we may drop down to [lower-altitude] Sebeta for speed work.”

At the end of some training sessions, the coaches host an open forum, where the athletes and supporters — partners, siblings, etc. — can voice concerns and express feedback. The coaching magic occurs by taking each individual’s training progression, race date and mental, physical and emotional health into consideration, then producing workouts that upward of 90 people can do together: collectivism in an individual, often solitary, sport.

But extensive familial ties are more than a coaching style for the brothers — it is a way of life. Adilo was raised in an agrarian family with 13 siblings near Mount Chilalo in the Arsi province, famed for being the birthplace of many Ethiopian icons. He went on to win several international marathons, but his career was cut short due to injury. Now, at any given time, up to 17 extended family members reside in his sizable Addis Ababa home. And Moges lives five houses down.

Adilo has always incorporated attention to athletes’ entire well-being, from advising them about financial investments to sharing personal experiences. In 2006, he and Hussein Makke, of Elite Sports Marketing & Management, met through a mutual Ethiopian friend. From there, they began working together to develop the next great crop of Ethiopian distance runners. 

“What makes Haji such a good coach is his ability to read each athlete individually,” Makke says. “He’s very understanding and genuine.”

 

(10/30/2019) ⚡AMP
by Hannah Borenstein
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Everything you need to know about running the 2020 Berlin marathon

The fast, flat marathon is known for its record-breaking history

As the home of Kipchoge’s amazing world-record of 2:01:39, Berlin Marathon is known to be one of the fastest marathons in the world, with Kenenisa Bekele missing the world record by 2 seconds at this year's race. Here's what you need to know about entering the 2020 ballot.

When does the 2020 Berlin Marathon ballot open?

The 2020 Berlin marathon ballot opened on October 1 2019 and will remain open until 31 October 31 2019. With a limit of 44,000 runners, Berlin marathon spots are in high demand.  You will receive an email confirming your entry into the ballot straight away.

When will the 2020 Berlin Marathon take place?

The 2020 Berlin Marathon will take place on Sunday September 27 2020.

How much does it cost to run the 2020 Berlin Marathon?

If you are successful in the ballot, the registration fee for the Berlin Marathon is €125 which at the time of writing coverts to £110.13 or $150US.  

When will the ballot results be announced?

The results of the ballot will be released from November 27 2019 onwards.

How does the ballot work?

The Berlin Marathon uses the same entry drawing procedure as other marathon events at the Abbott World Marathon Majors Series.

In the single runners entry, you will be required to submit all your relevant data during the registration phase, including your payment details. If you are successful in the ballot, your card will be charged and it will not be possible to transfer or cancel your race entry, so make sure you’re 100% certain before submitting your entry. If you are not successful in the ballot, your payment information will be deleted.

How can you get a guaranteed place for the 2020 Berlin Marathon?

If you’re 100% sure you want to run next year’s Berlin Marathon, you can enter under a guaranteed starting spot. 

There are two options when it comes to getting a guaranteed place – entering with a tour operator, or getting a charity place. Tour operators offer race spots as part of a holiday package, which you can often pay for in instalments up to the race.

Similar to other major marathons, charity places are also available, giving you a guaranteed marathon place in exchange for fundraising for a good cause.

What are the Good for Age options at the 2020 Berlin Marathon?

Known as the ‘fast runners’ route, fast runners can secure a guaranteed place for the 2020 Berlin Marathon if they can prove they have finished an AIMS-certified marathon in the last two years (2017/2018) in a certain time. These times are as follows:

Male runners:

18-44 (DOB 2001-1975): under 2:45 hours

45-59 (DOB 1794-1960): under 2:55 hours

60 and above (DOB 1959 and older): under 3:25 hours

Female runners:

18-44 (DOB 2001-1975): under 3:00 hours

45-59 (DOB 1794-1960): under 3:20 hours

60 and above (DOB 1959 and older): under 4:10 hours

The ballot for fast runner places also opened on October 1 2019 and close on October 31 2019.

When will I get my number for the Berlin Marathon?

Similar to other marathons, you will be required to pick up your bib number at the Berlin Marathon expo, which will be open from Thursday September 24 2020 to Saturday September 26 2020. 

The course is not confirmed but most likely it will be similar to the course run in 2019 (photo).  

(10/14/2019) ⚡AMP
by Runner’s World UK
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BMW Berlin Marathon

BMW Berlin Marathon

2020 Marathon has been cancelled. The story of the BERLIN-MARATHON is a story of the development of road running. When the first BERLIN-MARATHON was started on 13th October 1974 on a minor road next to the stadium of the organisers‘ club SC Charlottenburg Berlin 286 athletes had entered. The first winners were runners from Berlin: Günter Hallas (2:44:53), who...

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Eliud Kipchoge is now the first man to run 26.2 miles in less than two hours as he clocked 1:59:40 today

Eliud Kipchoge from Kenya and the current world record holder for the marathon made history today by running 26.2 miles in 1:59:40.  His splits were amazing.  His fastest kilometer was 2:48 and his slowest was 2:52.  At least 19 of his splits were 2:50 on the dot. 

He hit the first 5k in 14:13 with his pacemakers right out front.  He looked relaxed and smooth.  Just watching him gave me goosebumps because he makes it look so easy.

The course in Vienna, Austria was 90% flat and straight. The temperature was just under 50F and the humidity 90 percent at the start which was a little higher than expected.  But it did not have any visual effects on Eliud.  

Eliud said before the start, “I don’t know where the limits are, but I would like to go there.”

I did a poll on Facebook before the start and all but one person thought he could run sub two hours.  One thought he could run 1:55 but most thought 1:59 something.

No, this was not a race.  It is not a world record because he was the only one racing, he had drinks handed to him from a bike and he had pacers coming in and out. It was a challenge to see if it was possible for a man to run a sub two hour marathon.  And he did it.  

In watching the event it was distracting to always see the pacemakers out front until the end but they certainly did their job. It was almost like watching a new sport as the pacemakers came in and got in their formation.  

I would have rather have watched Eliud Kipchoge and Kenenisa Bekele battle it out in Berlin where I think one of them would have run sub 2:01 but I did enjoy watching this challenge.  Eliud made it look so easy to run 14:10 5k’s.  

Eliud was under an hour at the half way point and finished  very strong in 1:59:40.  The pacemakers helped Eliud run 2:50 kilometers on the dot from 33k to 40k.  

Then with about 500 meters to go the pacemakers let Kipchoge go and he sprinted to the finish line.    Shalane Flanagan who was one of the hosts of the You Tube broadcast said, “No way in my life time did I ever think I would see a man run a sub two hour marathon.”

We have now seen a man run a marathon in under two hours.  His wife Grace and their three children watched him race for the first time.  They were all smiles as was Eliud. 

Eliud Kipchoge is an Olympic Champion, world record holder clocking 2:01:39 at the Berlin Marathon last September and now the first man to cover 26.2 miles in under two hours.  

(10/11/2019) ⚡AMP
by Bob Anderson
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INEOS 1:59 Challenge

INEOS 1:59 Challenge

Mankind have constantly sought to reach new frontiers and to achieve the impossible. From Edmund Hillary reaching the summit of Mount Everest to Roger Bannister’s four-minute mile to Felix Baumgartner jumping from space we have frequently redefined the limits of human achievement and broken new barriers previously seen as simply impossible. After the four-minute mile and the ten second 100m...

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Berlin resident Sigrid Eichner, 79, has run 2,200 marathons and she didn’t start running until age 40

Kathrine Switzer meets a lot of runners. The 261 Fearless founder (who was the first woman to run the Boston Marathon with an official bib, back in 1967) travels the world, promoting women’s empowerment through running. But even she was shocked, during her visit to the Berlin Marathon last month, to meet a woman who has run 2,200 marathons which quite possibly is more than any other woman alive.

Born in 1940, Sigrid Eichner’s running began metaphorically–as an infant, she “ran” from Allied bombs, and from the Russians, with her family. Her passion for physical activity was born after the war, when, as a talented gymnast, she was sent to a boarding school for athletes. It wasn’t until she was a working mother of 40 that she started running, to take time for herself and escape domestic life (and possibly an unhappy marriage), according to one report.

After the fall of the Berlin Wall in 1989, running became a way for her to explore the world.

When we tried to verify the number, we found her entry on the Association of Road Racing Statisticians (ARRS) site, which shows 681 marathon results between November 29, 1981 and October 31, 2017, and includes the 2003 Niagara Falls Marathon and New York City Marathon during her only visit to North America.

(The ARRS site has been in limbo since the death of its driving force, Ken Young, in 2017.) The German ultramarathon site D-U-V.com lists between one and 23 ultra results for Eichner every year between 1981 and the present. It’s fair to say that Eichner has done more running than anything else, with the possible exception of breathing, during the last 40 years of her life.

Her children now grown, she admits she runs to escape loneliness. She has a literal curtain of race medals in her home, a room full of trophies from her younger days, and a closet full of race shirts.

It is sometimes suggested that people who race a lot must have money in order to afford the constant travel and race entries, but this does not appear to be the case for Eichner, most of whose races nowadays are in her native Germany.

She favors hostels over hotels, and has occasionally slept on the floor of the race expo to save money. Last year she spent just over 3,000 euros ($3310US) on 88 races, including travel and accommodation. She spoke of contacting the Guinness World Records organization in the hope of attracting a sponsor, but so far there is no official Guinness record.

She is rarely injured, though one report says she was once badly hurt in a car accident, and now has four screws in her back.

Occasionally running multiple marathons in a single weekend, Eichner says, “The first 30 minutes are the hardest.”

(10/11/2019) ⚡AMP
by Anne Francis
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Marathoners are ready to sweat it out in Doha tonight and Kenyan runners should be leading the pack

If recent history is any guide, the men’s marathon title is likely to go to an African runner with Kenya entering four runners led by defending champion Geoffrey Kirui who will be out defending the title at midnight.

Despite the race starting at midnight in an attempt to avoid the brutal heat of the day, temperatures are still expected to be 30C as marathoners take on the course along the waterfront of Doha’s famous Corniche connecting Doha Bay and Doha City Centre, set against the capital city’s towering skyline.

Unlike track and field being staged in an air-conditioned Khalifa International Stadium, marathoners have to endure the unforgiving Qatari heat as witnessed on day during the women’s race where also half the field failed to complete simply because you can’t air-condition 42km of road.

Kirui who is also the 2017 Boston Marathon winner will partner with Laban Korir who has wealth of experience on the roads having won Setúbal Half Marathon in Portugal, and another followed at the 2009 Pombal Meia Maratona.

At the 2011 Amsterdam Marathon, he finished second with his run of 2:06:05 behind his compatriot Wilson Chebet. Korir then won the 2014 Toronto Waterfront Marathon with a time of 2:08:15. He holds a personal best of 2:05.05 from Armsterdam Marathon in 2016.

Paul Lonyangata is another member of the squad that holds personal best of 2:06.1.

Amos Kipruto is the fourth member of the team, he made his marathon running at the  2016 Rome Marathon with a victory. In 2017, Kipruto won the Seoul Marathon in 2:05:54, before finishing fifth in the Amsterdam Marathon in 2:05:43. He was runner-up at the 2018 Berlin marathon.  

Away from the Kenyans Mosinet Geremew tops the entry list with a PB of 2:02:55, set as he followed home Kenya’s Olympic champion and world record-holder Eliud Kipchoge as he won the London Marathon.

Mule Wasihun was one place behind in London in a personal best of 2:03:16 that places him third in this season’s list also.

(10/05/2019) ⚡AMP
by Dennis Okeyo
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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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A side-by-side comparison of Kipchoge and Bekele’s Berlin Marathons

On Sunday morning, Kenenisa Bekele of Ethiopia ran just two seconds outside of the marathon world record in a finishing time of 2:01:41. On a slightly wet and humid day, following what Bekele described as a less than ideal build, his run on Sunday was phenomenal–but not quite good enough for a world record.

Both Kipchoge and Bekele ran their times on identical Berlin courses one year apart, and when examining the splits of the race, they’re shockingly similar except for a few minor differences (but when you’re talking about two seconds overall, minor differences matter).

If you put the splits side by side, Kipchoge and Bekele ran identical times through 5K (14:24), two seconds apart through 20K (57:56 and 57:58), one second apart through the half (1:01:05 and 1:01:06) and at 40K, nearly identical times again (1:55:30 to 1:55:32).

The biggest discrepancy in cumulative time between the two runs was the 30K split. Kipchoge was at 1:26:45 in 2018 and Bekele was 1:26:55 in 2019. Ten seconds in a marathon at most levels is a blink of an eye, but when we’re talking two seconds away from a world record, it makes a difference. The 30K mark was when when Bekele was noticeably behind Birhanu Legese, who was in a comfortable lead. Over the next 12K, Bekele made up a lot of time, but not quite enough time to snag the world record.

Relative to Kipchoge, Bekele started slightly faster (5-15K) and finished (25-40K) slightly slower. It’s possible that Kipchoge’s more conservative start could have given him the edge one year ago.

n two weeks’ time, Kipchoge will line up once again in hopes of making history. The current world record holder is aiming to become the first person to run under two hours for the marathon, a mark he attempted in 2017 with the help of Nike and the creation of the Breaking2 project.

(10/05/2019) ⚡AMP
by Running Magazine
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BMW Berlin Marathon

BMW Berlin Marathon

2020 Marathon has been cancelled. The story of the BERLIN-MARATHON is a story of the development of road running. When the first BERLIN-MARATHON was started on 13th October 1974 on a minor road next to the stadium of the organisers‘ club SC Charlottenburg Berlin 286 athletes had entered. The first winners were runners from Berlin: Günter Hallas (2:44:53), who...

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