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Articles tagged #Faith Kipyegon
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Sifan Hassan to race four events at Paris 2024 Olympics

At the Tokyo 2020 Olympics, Dutch distance runner Sifan Hassan made history by winning three individual medals across three different athletics disciplines, two golds and one bronze. She won golds in the women’s 5,000m and 10,000m events, and bronze in the women’s 1,500m behind Faith Kipyegon and Laura Muir. Well apparently three events didn’t keep Hassan busy enough, raising the stakes for Paris 2024 by competing in the 1,500m, 5,000m, 10,000m and the marathon—an unprecedented Olympic quadruple.

According to an announcement from the Dutch Olympic team, Hassan is entered in all four disciplines and will race a total of seven times over 10 days. Her most challenging stretch will be from Aug. 8-11, when she is scheduled to race the 1,500m semi-finals and finals, the women’s 10,000m final, and the women’s marathon on the final day of Paris 2024 (Aug. 11); all on consecutive days.

Hassan is the only athlete in Olympic history to have medaled in the 1,500m, 5,000m and 10,000m events at a single Games. She is also the first to qualify for and attempt this quadruple-distance feat.

Last year, Hassan expanded her repertoire by adding the marathon to her list of racing disciplines. She won her marathon debut at the 2023 London Marathon and went on to clock the second-fastest women’s marathon time in history (2:13:44) to win the 2023 Chicago Marathon.

Hassan’s Paris 2024 schedule is ambitious. Although she is one of the greatest distance runners in history, replicating her Tokyo success will be incredibly challenging. The women’s 1,500m and 5,000m are two of the deepest events right now, featuring formidable competitors like defending world champion Faith Kipyegon, Laura Muir (Olympic silver medallist), Australia’s Jessica Hull (2,000m world record holder), Ethiopia’s Gudaf Tsegay (5,000m world record holder), and Kenya’s Beatrice Chebet (world XC champion). Hassan’s best chances for a medal lie in the women’s 10,000m final and the marathon, which come at the end of the Olympic schedule.

Here’s a look at Hassan’s Olympic schedule:

August 2: 5,000m, Round 1 – 6:10 p.m.

August 5: 5,000m, Final – 9:10 p.m.

August 6: 1,500m, Round 1 – 10:05 a.m.

August 8: 1,500m, Semifinal – 7:35 p.m.

August 9: 10,000m Final – 8:55 p.m.

August 10: 1,500m, Final – 8:25 p.m.

August 11: Marathon – 8:00 a.m.

Only two athletes have won four medals at a single Olympic Games: U.S. sprint icon Florence Griffith-Joyner, who won three golds and one silver (in the 4x400m relay) at Seoul in 1988, and Fanny Blankers-Koen of the Netherlands, who won four golds at the 1948 Olympics in London in the 100m, 200m, 4x100m relay, and 80m hurdles.

(07/15/2024) Views: 111 ⚡AMP
by Marley Dickison
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Paris 2024 Olympic Games

Paris 2024 Olympic Games

For this historic event, the City of Light is thinking big! Visitors will be able to watch events at top sporting venues in Paris and the Paris region, as well as at emblematic monuments in the capital visited by several millions of tourists each year. The promise of exceptional moments to experience in an exceptional setting! A great way to...

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Faith Kipyegon shares two reasons behind her record-breaking 1500m display at Paris Diamond League

Kipyegon reveals two reasons behind her record-breaking display at the Paris Diamond League, despite it only being her second race of the season which has been hindered by injuries.

Faith Kipyegon has offered an insight into the factors that have been fueling her seemingly nonchalant ability to dominate races.

Kipyegon, who launched her Diamond League season in Paris on Sunday, took the world by surprise as she shattered her own record in the 1500m, running 3.49.04, some seven microseconds faster than when she broke the record again in Monaco a year ago.

 Kipyegon showcased why she is a force to be reckoned with as she eyes a historic third consecutive Olympic gold in the 1500m. 

Speaking to Citius Mag, Kipyegon revealed the two crucial factors fueling her dominant display: belief in her training and the competitive push from fellow athletes.

1. Unwavering Belief in Training

Kipyegon attributed her record-breaking performance to her confidence in the rigorous training she underwent. Despite the long absence from the track, her belief in the hard work and preparation was unwavering.

 “I think it is all about believing in the training I have done so far. After I asked my coach what was possible in Paris, he told me, ‘Yeah, everything is possible, you never know, the training you have done (could reap reward),” Kipyegon explained. 

This confidence propelled her to execute her race strategy flawlessly, leading to her remarkable finish. “I came here and just believed in myself, executed it just to see what was possible. I came here and ran a world record in my first Diamond League classic of the season,” she added.

2. Competitive Push from Jessica Hull

Another significant factor in Kipyegon’s stellar performance was the intense competition from Australian runner Jessica Hull. Hull’s relentless pressure throughout the race kept Kipyegon on her toes, ultimately pushing her to new heights.

 Hull's impressive time of 3:50.83 not only set a new Australian record but also became the fifth quickest ever run by a female athlete. Reflecting on the race, Kipyegon expressed her admiration for Hull’s performance.

 “I was like, who is following me? But I turned back and saw Jessica Hull behind me. It was really feeling great to push each other towards the finish line. I am really really happy for her,” Kipyegon said. 

Hull’s presence and competitiveness provided Kipyegon with the energy and drive needed to break her own world record.

(07/08/2024) Views: 122 ⚡AMP
by Mark Kinyanjui
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Gudaf Tsegay, Lamecha Girma head Ethiopia's 43-athlete squad to battle Kenya in Paris Olympics

In the 2021 Tokyo Olympics, Kenya bested Ethiopia as the top African nation, finishing 19th overall with 10 athletics medals.

World record-holders Gudaf Tsegay and Lamecha Girma are set to lead a formidable Ethiopian squad of 43 athletes at the upcoming Paris Olympic Games.

The robust team comprising top-tier talent across various track and field events promises to offer fierce competition to their long-time rivals Kenya in the race for Olympic medals.

Tsegay will be competing in the 10,000 meters, 5,000 meters, and 1,500 meters events.

The 27-year-old athlete's standout performance at the Prefontaine Classic, where she shattered the world record in the 5,000 meters with an astounding time of 14:00.21, means she will be challenging rival Kenya's Faith Kipyegon who will chase two gold medals after winning the 1500m and 5000m.

The women's team also boasts an impressive lineup in the 800 meters, featuring Tsige Duguma, Habitam Alemu, and Werknesh Mesele, with Nigist Getachew as the reserve.

In the 1,500 meters, Tsegay will be joined by Birke Haylom and Diribe Wolteji, with Hirut Meshesha on standby. Medina Eisa and Ejgayehu Taye will support Tsegay in the 5,000 meters, with Freweyni Hailu as reserve, while Fotyen Tesfay, Tsigie Gebreselama, and Aynadis Mebratu will compete in the 10,000 meters.

The 3,000 meters steeplechase will see Sembo Almayew and Lomi Muleta in action, and the marathon team includes Tigst Assefa, Amane Beriso, and Megertu Alemu, with Gotytom Gebreslase as reserve.

On the men's side, the team is equally impressive as Abdisa Fayisa, Samuel Tefera, and Ermias Girma will compete in the 1,500 meters.

The 5,000 meters team includes Hagos Gebrhiwet, Yomif Kejelcha, and Addisu Yihune, with Selemon Barega as reserve.

Kejelcha will also contest the 10,000 meters alongside Berihu Aregawi and Biniam Mehari, with Barega again as a reserve.

Lamecha Girma, alongside Samuel Firewu and Getnet Wale, will vie for victory in the men's 3,000 meters steeplechase, with Abrham Sime as reserve.

Ethiopia team to Paris

Women

800 meters: Tsige Duguma, Habitam Alemu, Werknesh Mesele, Nigist Getachew (Reserve)

1500 meters: Gudaf Tsegay, Birke Haylom, Diribe Wolteji, Hirut Meshesha (Reserve)

5000 meters: Gudaf Tsegay, Medina Eisa, Ejgayehu Taye, Freweyni Hailu (Reserve)

10,000 meters: Gudaf Tsegay, Fotyen Tesfay, Tsigie Gebreselama, Aynadis Mebratu (Reserve)

3000 meters Steeplechase: Sembo Almayew, Lomi Muleta

Marathon:Tigst Assefa, Amane Beriso, Megertu Alemu, Gotytom Gebreslase (Reserve)

Men

1500 meters: Abdisa Fayisa, Samuel Tefera, Ermias Girma, Teddese Lemi (Reserve)

5000 meters: Hagos Gebrhiwet, Yomif Kejelcha, Addisu Yihune, Selemon Barega (Reserve)

10,000 meters: Yomif Kejelcha, Berihu Aregawi, Selemon Barega, Biniam Mehari (Reserve)

Men's 3000 meters steeplechase: Lamecha Girma, Samuel Firewu, Getnet Wale, Abrham Sime (Reserve)

Marathon: Sisay Lemma, Deresa Geleta, Kenenisa Bekele, Tamirat Tola (Reserve)

20 km Race walk: Misgana Wakuma

(07/06/2024) Views: 142 ⚡AMP
by Festus Chuma
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Paris 2024 Olympic Games

Paris 2024 Olympic Games

For this historic event, the City of Light is thinking big! Visitors will be able to watch events at top sporting venues in Paris and the Paris region, as well as at emblematic monuments in the capital visited by several millions of tourists each year. The promise of exceptional moments to experience in an exceptional setting! A great way to...

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Faith Kipyegon offers success tip to upcoming athletes

Faith Kipyegon has revealed the challenges of being a track athlete and how she manages to keep the focus ahead of the Olympic Games.

Double world record holder Faith Kipyegon has opened up on the struggles of running and disclosed how she manages to keep going through the tough times.

The three-time world 1500m champion explained that it’s not a smooth sailing and just like any other athlete, she faces hurdles in her pursuit for success but she does not allow challenges to pull her back.

She added that her main goal is to work hard and put in the effort as she looks to achieve the goals she has set. She is a testimony that nothing comes easy and from time to time, Kipyegon has also insisted on athletes working hard.

“It’s not a smooth sailing…it’s only that hard work and being patient is the most important thing. I know being patient and training hard will get me where I want to be,” the two-time Olympic champion said.

She opened her season at the Kenyan Olympic trials, where she punched the 1500m and 5000m tickets to the Paris Olympics, dominantly winning both races.

This comes after her final track race that was at the Prefontaine Classic, the Diamond League Meeting in Eugene in 2023. She intended to open her season at the Diamond League Meeting in Xiamen but was forced to withdraw due to an injury setback.

The 30-year-old was then confirmed for the Prefontaine Classic but could not compete there due to the injury. After sealing tickets to the Olympics, she will be chasing history on the global stage, hoping to become the first woman to win three successive Olympic trials in the 1500m.

She will also be keen to win the 5000m gold medal, and etch her name in the annals of history. She made history at last year’s World Championships in Budapest, Hungary to win her third 1500m title and also claim top honours in the 5000m.

“It will be history to win the 1500m for the first time and focus on the 5000m…I know it will not be easy but I’m going to try and see what will be possible,” Kipyegon said.

Her next stop will be at the Diamond League Meeting in Paris, France, where she intends to have a great build up to the Olympics.

(07/01/2024) Views: 143 ⚡AMP
by Abigael Wuafula
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Confident Faith Kipyegon ready to double at Paris Olympics after impressing on day two of Kenyan trials

Winning the 1500m at the Kenyan Olympic trials has boosted Faith Kipyegon's confidence and she has disclosed plans to double in the 1500m and 5000m at the Paris 2024 Olympics.

Three-time world 1500m champion Faith Kipyegon has impressed one more time on day two of the Kenyan Olympic trials, winning the 1500m and she has admitted it is a confidence booster for her to double in the 1500m and 5000m.

The double world champion clocked an impressive 3:53.98 to cross the finish line ahead of Nelly Chepchirchir who also qualified for the games, clocking 3:58.46 to cross the finish line.

Us-based runner Susan Ejore completed the podium, clocking an astonishing 4:00.22 to also qualify for the games.

Kipyegon was proud to share that the win is a confidence booster since she has been out with an injury and opening her season with a win and clocking such a fast time has encouraged her to double at the Olympics.

Before the race, her goal was to ensure she motivates others to join her in search for Olympic glory and she explained that her main aim was to ensure they run a faster race, something she was happy to have achieved and also pushed Chepchirchir and Ejore to hit the Olympic qualifying mark.

“I had not raced due to an injury but I thank God because I ran an incredible race today. I can declare that I’m going to double after this win because I have gained more confidence and I’m doing well. I’m ready to go and represent Kenya in the 1500m and 5000m.

“I see the team is very strong because we have worked together and we had talked before the race that we shall run a fast one. Today we wanted to run faster.

“After now, we are going to prepare for the Games and pray to God that we stay healthy and focus on the Olympics,” Kipyegon said after the race.

In her season opener at the Nyayo National Stadium on Friday, Kipyegon also outsmarted other world 10,000m record holder Beatrice Chebet to take the crown.

The two-time Olympic 1500m champion clocked 14:46.28 to cross the finish line as Chebet finished second in 14:52.55. Margaret Chelimo completed the podium, stopping the clock at 14:59.39.

(06/15/2024) Views: 239 ⚡AMP
by Abigael Wuafula
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Paris 2024 Olympic Games

Paris 2024 Olympic Games

For this historic event, the City of Light is thinking big! Visitors will be able to watch events at top sporting venues in Paris and the Paris region, as well as at emblematic monuments in the capital visited by several millions of tourists each year. The promise of exceptional moments to experience in an exceptional setting! A great way to...

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Is Beatrice Chebet Kenya's best bet for double gold at Paris Olympics?

With Olympic glory beckoning, is Beatrice Chebet Kenya's smart bet for double gold?

Two-time World cross country champion Beatrice Chebet is one of the Kenyan long-distance runners who are always known to show up when it matters and she stunned the whole world this past weekend with her world record.

Chebet, the world 5000m bronze medallist, competing in her second 10,000m event since she started her career, became the first woman in history to run under 29 minutes over the 25-lap race.

The 24-year-old stopped the clock at 28:54.14 to shatter Letesenbet Gidey’s world record time and automatically earn herself a spot in the women’s 10,000m team to the Paris 2024 Olympics where she has expressed interest in doubling in the 5000m and 10,000m.

After her world record feat at the Prefontaine Classic, the Diamond League Meeting in Eugene, Chebet said: “I came to run the 10,000m in order to get qualification and a great position for Paris because I want to double. I’m happy because it’s my first time to be on an Olympic team and with good health and hard work, I will medal again in Paris and that will be my favourite medal.”

The former world silver medallist will be making her debut at the Olympics and as far as things stand, she might just be the surprise winner in the two distances.

She has been in impeccable form this season, following her world record on the New Year’s Eve at the Cursa dels Nassos where she clocked an impressive 14:13 in the 5km road race.

The Commonwealth Games 5000m champion then proceeded to successfully defend her cross-country title in Belgrade, Serbia going up against a strong field that included world 10km record holder Agnes Jebet and Sirikwa Classic Cross-Country champion Emmaculate Anyango.

She opened her track season at the Diamond League Meeting in Doha, Qatar, flooring a strong Ethiopian contingent to win the women’s 5000m race. So far this season, it is evident that Chebet is a strong contender for the top prizes in Paris and no one is going to stop her.

Double world record holder Faith Kipyegon is yet to open her season following a slight injury setback and she might pose as Chebet’s closest challenger, but until then, the National Police Officer is in the right shape to carry the day in the city of love.

(05/31/2024) Views: 348 ⚡AMP
by Abigael Wuafula
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Paris 2024 Olympic Games

Paris 2024 Olympic Games

For this historic event, the City of Light is thinking big! Visitors will be able to watch events at top sporting venues in Paris and the Paris region, as well as at emblematic monuments in the capital visited by several millions of tourists each year. The promise of exceptional moments to experience in an exceptional setting! A great way to...

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Is Running a Four-Minute Mile the Secret to Longevity?

A new study shows that running may increase your longevity and that elite runners live longer than their peers.

The 200th person to break four minutes for the mile, according to the National Union of Track Statisticians, was a Swiss runner named Rolf Gysin. On August 16, 1974, Gysin clocked a 3:56.88. It wasn’t a big surprise: he had already run 3:37 for 1,500 meters the year before, which is equivalent to about a 3:54 mile, and had competed in the Munich Olympics a few years earlier. He was 22 when he broke four; he’s now 72—and still kicking, so to speak.

Gysin was the last guy to make the cut in a new British Journal of Sports Medicine study assessing the longevity of the first 200 runners to break four minutes in the mile, timed to coincide with the seventieth anniversary of Roger Bannister’s famous run. Sub-four doesn’t have the cachet it used to—Track and Field News announced last year that they would stop tracking American sub-fours because the barrier was no longer relevant, though it later reversed the decision—but it’s still a big deal now and was even more so a few generations ago. So did the rigors of pushing their bodies past a once impassable barrier shave years off the lives of these supermen? In a word, no. The study adds another data point to the general finding that elite endurance athletes—Olympians, Tour de France riders, runners—are rewarded with increased longevity. What this finding actually means, though, is perhaps less obvious than it seems.

The study was led by Stephen Foulkes and Mark Haykowsky of the University of Alberta along with André La Gerche of St. Vincent’s Hospital Melbourne in Australia. Its set-up is straightforward. Take the first 200 sub-four milers, and hit up Google to see when they were born and when or if they died. Overall, 60 of the 200 men had died, at an average age of 73.6. Those still alive had an average age of 77.6 and counting. The researchers weren’t able to obtain causes of death for everyone, but of the seven who died before the age of 55, six were traumatic deaths or suicide and one was cancer.

For each runner, they then calculated their life expectancy on the day they broke four. For Bannister, the relevant comparison was how long a 25-year-old Englishman would be expected to live in 1954; for Gysin, it was a 22-year-old Swiss in 1974. Then they aggregated the results to see whether the runners had greater longevity than their age- and sex-matched countrymen.

Here’s what the survival curve looks like, with the x-axis showing years since first sub-four mile:

On average the runners outlive the matched general population by 4.7 years. There’s a generational effect: those who broke four in the 1950s outlived their peers by 9.2 years, while those who did it in the 1960s or 1970s had an edge of 5.5 or 2.9 years, respectively. That could be because the health of the general population is improving thanks to better medical care. But a bigger factor, I assume, is that most of the milers are still alive. Check back in another decade or two, and Rolf Gysin and his 1970s peers will (touch wood) have added to their longevity stats.

The main spur for this study was the long-running debate on whether “extreme” levels of exercise can damage your health—and lead to heart problems in particular. You may think that running a mile isn’t very extreme. But training to run a sub-four-minute mile is definitely extreme: this analysis from a few years ago found that top milers generally run between 75 and 105 miles a week, with around 20 percent of it at very high intensities. So it’s good news to find that barrier-breaking milers aren’t dropping like flies.

Still, there are a bunch of caveats to this kind of study. One is that outliving the average person is a pretty low bar to clear. How do athletes fare compared to someone doing the modest amount of exercise recommended by public health guidelines? One estimate found that the equivalent of just five hours of brisk walking per week extends your life expectancy by 4.2 years. Other estimates, to be fair, are less optimistic—but a comparison of sub-four milers with, say, 5:00 or 6:00 milers rather than the average couch-potato would be interesting.

The other big question is how much of the milers’ longevity is a result of genetics. I’m of the opinion that breaking four is something that only a small fraction of the world’s population can achieve, regardless of how hard they train, how healthily they eat, how fervently they believe in themselves, and how springy their shoes are. Perhaps the traits that make a four-minute mile feasible—strong heart, robust metabolism, great immune system—also favor longevity. Maybe Bannister would have lived just as long even if he had never run a step.

These are tricky problems to solve: you can’t randomly assign people to follow one lifestyle or another for decades, so every dataset has weaknesses. This particular study is also, yet again, all men. The women’s mile record is Faith Kipyegon’s 4:07.64, set last summer. At first I was thinking you could pick an alternate benchmark to study in women, like sub-four for 1,500 meters. But that barrier wasn’t broken until 1976, and by 2000 only 64 women had done it, most of whom are presumably still alive. Even if you pick lower thresholds, there simply weren’t that many women competing until longer track events were added to the Olympic program in the 1970s. Unfortunately, this sort of longevity analysis for female endurance runners will likely have to wait a few more decades.

But even if you could tease out the effects of genetics and training, I suspect there might still be something missing from the analysis: the mystique of the four-minute barrier. I’d love to see a comparison of those first 200 sub-four milers with their contemporaries who ran between 4:00.0 and 4:01.0 in the same era—the near-misses. Back in 2018, a Dutch economist named Adrian Kalwij studied the longevity of U.S. Olympic medalists between 1904 and 1936. All the medalists lived longer than the general population, but silver medalists lived about three years less than gold or bronze medalists. There was something about being “first loser” that was even worse than coming third—an observation that has been confirmed by facial expression analysis on the podium, which finds that silver medalists are the least likely to smile.

Kalwij is interested in the effect of socio-economic status (SES) on health: why do rich people live longer than poor people, and by how much? But his theory is that it’s not just about resources; it’s also about the psychological effects of winning and losing—whether it’s a race, or a spot at an elite college, or a job promotion. In a follow-up study in 2019 (which I wrote about here), he found that the effect of SES on the longevity of Dutch Olympians has been growing, from no effect in the earliest cohort to a difference of 11 years between high- and low-SES athletes in the most recent cohort. That reflects, he believes, an increasingly winner-take-all society in which we all have more opportunities to succeed but also more opportunities to fail. Those who accrue loss after loss in these micro-competitions pay a price in our health.

Whenever I see a study about the longevity of athletes—or, say, Oscar winners, who live longer than Oscar nominees—I’m reminded of Kalwij’s work. I have no doubt that physical activity is the single most powerful lever we have to improve health. I’m fairly confident that those benefits accrue even to those who train really hard, even if the new miler study doesn’t prove it. But I also wonder how much you benefit from the transcendent experience of reaching the top of the mountain—perhaps because my own best 1,500 time, according to World Athletics scoring tables, is equivalent to a 4:00.03 mile. Ouch.

(05/25/2024) Views: 238 ⚡AMP
by Outside Online
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Nike responds to controversial Paris Olympics kits for Team Kenya and USA

The brains behind the Paris 2024 Olympics Nike kits have explained the reasons behind the designs that generated mixed reactions from Kenyans and Americans.

The Paris 2024 Olympic Nike kits for team Kenya and USA elicited mixed reactions from fans who were worried about the color and too much exposure among other aspects.

Nike unveiled the kits during the "On Air" event where world 100m champion Sha'Carri Richardson, two-time Olympic champion Eliud Kipchoge, double world record holder Faith Kipyegon among other athletes were used as models.

However, what people did not know is that Nike has been preparing for the Olympic Games for a few years (since before the pandemic). As reported by Fashionista, they were focusing on fine-tuning features like Dri-Fit and Air for even better performance, testing items over Zoom.

"You need diversity in your pool. You need a certain amount of playing hours, time and intensity in these projects, but you also need the voice of an everyday athlete," Kathy Gomez, Nike's vice president of footwear innovation told Fashionista.

“Testing is a very intimate experience, getting to know them and understanding their data but also understanding them. We do everything to make the athlete feel like they're part of the process."

She added that Nike also uses stats from the sports research labs, taking results from a group of marathoners to optimize a digital prototype for running miles on end, before creating samples.

"Data is the new design. It allows us to amplify the benefits we deliver, whether it's compression or breathability or weight," Vice President of Apparel Innovation Janett Nichol said.

“To make a garment, we don't have to cut it into several pieces and then put all those elements together. We're able to put data through a digital computational system, and everything comes out."

Speaking about basketball, Gomez added: “If you think about efficiency in basketball, it's about holding your foot in. Containment in all directions plus comfort are two things that can be opposing.

"Being able to get containment that locks you in but doesn't feel like it's too tight comes from obsessing over the details.”

Nike’s Olympics preparation is mainly focused on refinement, and some sports have offered more room for experimentation.

Meanwhile, Nike did get some backlash after "On Air” with critics sharing their opinion. In response to the former, a Nike spokesperson said there are almost 50 unique competition styles to choose from, meaning athletes won't have to compete in the skimpiest clothing if they don't want to.

"For a sport like track and field, a sprinter may have very different needs than a javelin thrower, so our collection includes a dozen competition styles fine-tuned for specific events to ensure athletes can choose outfits that match their style and personal preference without sacrificing comfort," he said.

“We also have a range of bottoms for athletes to choose from offering full to less coverage. Ultimately, the best kits ensure that athletes can perform at their best without being distracted by their apparel, helping them stay focused on the world stage."

(05/21/2024) Views: 335 ⚡AMP
by Abigael Wuafula
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Paris 2024 Olympic Games

Paris 2024 Olympic Games

For this historic event, the City of Light is thinking big! Visitors will be able to watch events at top sporting venues in Paris and the Paris region, as well as at emblematic monuments in the capital visited by several millions of tourists each year. The promise of exceptional moments to experience in an exceptional setting! A great way to...

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Faith Kipyegon withdraws from Prefontaine Classic amidst injury concerns

Two-time Olympic champion Faith Kipyegon unexpectedly withdraws from Prefontaine Classic.

Two-time Olympic champion Faith Kipyegon has made an unexpected withdrawal from the Eugene Diamond League commonly known as the Prefontaine Classic.

Scheduled to compete in the 5,000m on Friday May 24 Kipyegon’s departure comes as a sudden pivot in her preparation for the upcoming Paris Games.

The Kenyan middle-distance star expressed her decision through a heartfelt announcement.

 "I’ve been building in a great way during the past months for a beautiful season ahead. Some weeks back I got a small muscle problem that was handled well," Kipyegon revealed. 

Despite the setback, she confirmed her continued dedication to her training regime. 

"I’m now back in full training, focusing to start my season in four weeks' time at the Kenyan Trials for the Olympic Games," she added.

The anticipation for Kipyegon at the Prefontaine Classic was high, especially given her stellar track record and her history with the event.

"I saw my name announced for @preclassic, it’s one of the greatest competitions in the circuit and I plan to compete there again in 2025," Kipyegon stated.

Kipyegon’s decision is particularly poignant as it follows her world record-breaking performance in Paris last June where she clocked an astonishing 14:05.20 in the 5,000m.

Unfortunately, this record fell outside the Olympics qualification window, necessitating another qualifying run to secure her spot for Paris. 

The qualifying standard for the 5,000m is set at 14:52.00, a mark Kipyegon has previously surpassed but must achieve again within the designated window from July 1, 2023, to June 30, 2024.

The 2023 season saw Kipyegon ascend to new heights in athletics, breaking three world records across various distances. 

Starting with the 1,500m in Florence, she continued her record-setting spree in Paris before topping the one-mile world record at the Monaco Diamond League. 

Her victories at the World Championships in Budapest, where she clinched gold in both the 1,500m and 5,000m, further cemented her dominance in middle-distance running.

However, her 5,000m world record was short-lived, as Ethiopia's Gudaf Tsegay surpassed it at the Prefontaine Classic in September with a time of 14:00.21.

Eugene, the host city for the Prefontaine Classic, holds a special place in Kipyegon’s career. It was here she won her second world title in the 1,500m in 2022 and secured last season’s Diamond League Trophy over the same distance. 

Her withdrawal not only impacts her preparations for Paris but also leaves her fans and fellow competitors in a state of surprise and anticipation for her next move.

(05/15/2024) Views: 411 ⚡AMP
by Festus Chuma
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Prefontaine Classic

Prefontaine Classic

The Pre Classic, part of the Diamond League series of international meets featuring Olympic-level athletes, is scheduled to be held at the new Hayward Field in Eugene. The Prefontaine Classicis the longest-running outdoor invitational track & field meet in America and is part of the elite Wanda Diamond League of meets held worldwide annually. The Pre Classic’s results score has...

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How motherhood turned Peres Jepchirchir into the marathon force to be reckoned with

The reigning Women's marathon Olympic champion has revealed how her daughter helped her take her running back to the next level.

Peres Jepchirchir is one of the most recognisable and well accomplished athletes in the world of marathon.

The 30-year-old has been conquering road races for quite a while now ever since she launched her running career in 2013, when she ran two 10k road races in South Africa and then took part in the Kisumu marathon and cross country running, alongside a certain Faith Kipyegon.

It was in 2016 that she really starting becoming consistent after a few struggles, as she started dominating in half-marathons. She continued on  her trail and even broke two half-marathon records. It was after that that she was blessed with a daughter, Natalie.

As the world recently celebrated mother’s day, Jepchirchir believes becoming a mother has made her a much better athlete, as it motivated her to go beyond her limits, knowing there was now someone in her life looking up to her and depending on her.

“It has changed my life since Natalie was born. You have to work extra hard because now you know you have someone who is depending on you,” Jepchirchir told Olympics Kenya.

Although motherhood is a beautiful thing, it did not come without its challenges, as it effectively meant her life was not her own anymore.

“There were some challenges, but it was mostly good. When Natalia was young, sometimes it would be difficult as she would get sick sometimes. You do not know if she is feeling pain and sometimes, it would be difficult to go for races. 

“I returned to action when Natalia was one year and two months old, which made it difficult for me. I was uncomfortable traveling without my daughter because you just could not tell if she was healthy.”

Getting back to action was no easy streak. Jepchirchir had to shed off her weight, but also had to balance and find a way to solve the issues her baby went through, including the occasional illness.

“It is not easy. Losing weight was a tall order. It was also difficult to sleep. When you want to wake up, she also wants to wake up, when the baby is unwell, its issues, but challenges are there. You just have to commit yourself, love it and enjoy it.”

Jepchirchir has gone on to win the Olympic Games, and recently set the women’s-only world record in the marathon, finishing in two hours, 16 minutes and 16 seconds in London.

She attributes it to the motivation her daughter has instilled in her, describing her as her biggest cheerleader.

“They are playful. Sometimes she will tell me, ‘mommy, you are going to be okay! Mommy, you are going to win!’ Kids are comforting sometimes if you are down.

“Like the other day at the London Marathon, Natalia got emotional. People were cheering me on, but she was crying. She is used to seeing me winning.

"So the one time I got third in London, she was crying ‘Mommy, why did you not win?’ and you end up asking yourself why.”

As she continues to pursue excellence on the marathon course, Peres Jepchirchir exemplifies the extraordinary balance of motherhood and athletic achievement, proving that with dedication and love, anything is possible.

(05/14/2024) Views: 297 ⚡AMP
by Mark Kinyanjui
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Why Faith Kipyegon is under pressure to deliver at Prefontaine Classic

Multiple world champion Faith Kipyegon will open her season at the Prefontaine Classic, where she will run the 5,000m, but there is little margin for error given what is at stake.

Two-time Olympic champion Faith Kipyegon will open her season at the Eugene Diamond League, popularly known as the Prefontaine Classic, but the event holds more significance for her as far as the Paris Olympics is concerned.

Kipyegon will be running the 5,000m in Eugene on May 24 where she is seeking to hit the Olympic qualifying standard even though she has not made up her mind on whether she will double at the Paris Games.

Kipyegon run a world record 14:05.20 in Paris, France in June last year but that was outside the Olympics qualification window which means she will have to do it all over again to be in contention for a place at the Paris Games over the 5,000m.

The Olympic qualifying window for individual events, other than the 10,000m and combined events, is from July 1, 2023 and June 30, 2024 and Kipyegon and Co will need to clock 14:52.00, which is the mark set for Paris Olympics qualification.

That will give the world 5,000m champion some extra pressure heading to Eugene but she will be counting on her experience to get her over the line.

Kipyegon had a wonderful 2023 season that saw her break three world records, starting with her specialty 1,500m in Florence, Italy last June before the 5,000m in Paris a week later.

She would lower the one-mile world record at the Monaco Diamond League in July before winning gold in 1,500m and 5,000m at the World Championships in Budapest, Hungary a month later.

Her 5,000m world record was, however, broken two months later by Ethiopia's Gudaf Tsegay who ran 14:00.21 at the Prefontaine Classic in September.

Eugene holds special memories for Kipyegon who won her second world title in 1,500m in the US city in 2022 as well as last season’s Diamond League Trophy over the distance.

(05/14/2024) Views: 398 ⚡AMP
by Joel Omotto
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Prefontaine Classic

Prefontaine Classic

The Pre Classic, part of the Diamond League series of international meets featuring Olympic-level athletes, is scheduled to be held at the new Hayward Field in Eugene. The Prefontaine Classicis the longest-running outdoor invitational track & field meet in America and is part of the elite Wanda Diamond League of meets held worldwide annually. The Pre Classic’s results score has...

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Kelvin Kiptum: Thousands mourn marathon world record holder at funeral in Kenya

On Friday in Chepkorio, Kenya, thousands gathered for the funeral of marathon world record holder Kelvin Kiptum, who died at the age of 24 in a car accident on Feb. 11 with his coach, Gervais Hakizimana.

Kiptum will be remembered as one of the biggest rising stars in the sport for his record-breaking two-hour and 35-second run to break the world record at the 2023 Chicago Marathon.

Kiptum’s widow, Asenath Rotich, led the mourners at the funeral for the Kenyan marathon star. According to BBC Africa, she broke down when revealing that the couple had been planning a big wedding celebration in April. He had stunned the world in his short marathon career, and figures from sports and politics came to pay tribute to a man whose life had promised so much.

Kenyan president William Ruto was in attendance, as well as World Athletics president Sebastian Coe, who believed Kiptum would have become the first person to run a competitive marathon in under two hours. “It is a frustration to all of us that we won’t witness what I truly know he was capable of,” Coe told BBC Africa. “For sure he would have broken it. It would have been (Roger) Bannister and Edmund Hillary, both of them, wrapped into one.”

Kiptum was looking to better his world record time at the 2024 Rotterdam Marathon in April.

Also in attendance were notable Kenyan athletes Faith Kipyegon, former world record holder Paul Tergat, and 2022 London Marathon champion Amos Kipruto, who was one of Kiptum’s pallbearers at the service. Eliud Kipchoge did not attend as he continues to prepare for the Tokyo Marathon on March 3.

“Since he arrived… he has rewritten history,” said Tergat. “He has a legacy that we’ve never seen in this world. We are here to celebrate what he has achieved in a very short time.”

Before Kiptum became one of the world’s biggest marathon stars, he had worked as a livestock herder and trained as an electrician in Chepkorio. The government in Elgeyo-Marakwet County plans to honor the late marathoner by building an athletics stadium in his name.

(02/23/2024) Views: 370 ⚡AMP
by Marley Dickinson
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Faith Kipyegon donates history-making spikes to the Museum of World Athletics

Double world record holder Faith Kipyegon has donated her history-making bright pink running spikes to the Museum of World Athletics.

Three-time World 1500m champion Faith Kipyegon has donated the spikes that she competed in at the World Championships in Budapest, Hungary to the Museum of World Athletics.

The reigning World 5000m champion wore those bright pink running spikes while making history during last year’s global bonanza.

Kipyegon has now graciously chosen to donate to MOWA in recognition of the historic double accomplished by the Kenyan phenomenon with her formidable finish in the gripping 12-and-a-half lap final.

Kipyegon was in a class of her own during last year’s event, bagging both the 1500m and 5000m titles. In the 1500m final in Budapest, she controlled the race all the way, gradually winding up the pace before kicking hard at the bell and opening up a wide gap with 200m remaining.

She crossed the line in 3:54.87, comfortably clear of the young Ethiopian Diribe Welteji, who took second in 3:55.69. The fast-finishing Sifan Hassan claimed bronze in 3:56.00.

As would be the case in the 5000m, Kipyegon with the smooth, perfectly balanced high temp running style secured a historic achievement with her 1500m success.

No woman had ever completed a hat-trick of World Championships titles at the distance. Algeria’s Hassiba Boulmerka, Tatyana Tomashova of Russia, and Bahraini Maryam Jamal all won twice at the distance.

Kipyegon's first 1500m title came in London back in 2017 and her second in Oregon in 2022. In between, in Doha in 2019, on the comeback trail after the birth of her daughter, Alyn, she took the silver medal behind Hassan.

She now has focus on the Olympic Games where she intends to make history one more time by bagging her third Olympic title.

“That’s the big fish. If I win three times, back-to-back Olympic titles at 1500m, it will be a motivation to the next generation. And it will be a big motivation for me to try to achieve it. It would be a big legacy to leave behind. It would be something else,” she said as per World Athletics.

(02/07/2024) Views: 332 ⚡AMP
by Abigael Wuafula
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Faith Kipyegon revels after receiving 'beautiful' gift from Nike

Faith Kipyegon expressed her excitement after being gifted by her sponsors, Nike.

Double world record holder Faith Kipyegon has expressed her excitement after being gifted a bomber jacket by Nike, her sponsors.

The jacket has a portrait of a mother embracing her child to depict the two-time Olympic champion with her daughter and is quoted with words, ‘MOTHER STRONGER’ at the back.

At the front, one side has the Kenyan flag logo and the other side has the Nike logo. The arms of the jacket are also made of leather to showcase the good quality of the merchandise.

Expressing her gratitude on her X (Twitter) handle, the double World champion shared a snapshot showcasing her radiant smile while donning the sleek Nike bomber jacket. In the caption, she said: “A beautiful present from #NikeRunning.”

Kipyegon's words resonated with the essence of the athlete-sponsor relationship, emphasizing more than just the material aspect of the gift.

The acknowledgment underscored the profound support that sponsors like Nike provide, extending beyond the track to boost an athlete's confidence and style.

The bomber jacket, a symbol of both fashion and functionality, perfectly aligns with Nike's commitment to merging performance and aesthetics. As a global leader in athletic apparel, Nike has consistently demonstrated an understanding of athletes' multifaceted needs.

The brand's dedication to crafting gear that transcends the sporting arena to seamlessly integrate into an athlete's lifestyle is evident in the choice of this trendy yet functional gift for Kipyegon.

Kipyegon's appreciation for the thoughtful gesture serves as a testament to the symbiotic relationship between athletes and their sponsors. Beyond the tracks and competition, it's the unwavering support and thoughtful gestures that foster a sense of camaraderie and gratitude.

As Kipyegon continues to conquer new milestones in her athletic journey, she does so not only as an ambassador for her sport but also as a stylish representative of Nike's commitment to empowering athletes both on and off the field.

(01/23/2024) Views: 395 ⚡AMP
by Abigael Wuafula
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The Pill That Over Half the Distance Medallists Used at the 2023 Worlds

What's the deal with sodium bicarbonate?What if there was a pill, new to the market this year, that was used by more than half of the distance medalists at the 2023 World Athletics Championships? A supplement so in-demand that there was a reported black market for it in Budapest, runners buying from other runners who did not advance past the preliminary round — even though the main ingredient can be found in any kitchen?

How did this pill become so popular? Well, there are rumors that Jakob Ingebrigtsen has been taking it for years — rumors that Ingebrigtsen’s camp and the manufacturers of the pill will neither confirm nor deny.

So about this pill…does it work? Does it actually boost athletic performance? Ask a sports scientist, someone who’s studied it for more than a decade, and they’ll tell you yes.

“There’s probably four or five legal, natural supplements, if you will, that seem to have withstood the test of time in terms of the research literature and [this pill] is one of those,” says Jason Siegler, Director of Human Performance in the College of Health Solutions at Arizona State University.

But there’s a drawback to this pill. It could…well, let’s allow Luis Grijalva, who used it before finishing 4th in the World Championship 5,000m final in Budapest, to explain.

“I heard stories if you do it wrong, you chew it, you kind of shit your brains out,” Grijalva says. “And I was a little bit scared.”

The research supports that, too.

“[Gastrointestinal distress] has by far and away been the biggest hurdle for this supplement,” Siegler says.Okay, enough with the faux intrigue. If you’ve read the subtitle of this article, you know the pill we are talking about is sodium bicarbonate. Specifically, the Maurten Bicarb System, which has been available to the public since February and which has been used by some of the top teams in endurance sports: cycling juggernaut Team Jumbo-Visma and, in running, the On Athletics Club and NN Running Team. (Maurten has sponsorship or partnership agreements with all three).Some of the planet’s fastest runners have used the Maurten Bicarb System in 2023, including 10,000m world champion Joshua Cheptegei, 800m silver medalist Keely Hodgkinson, and 800m silver medalist Emmanuel Wanyonyi. Faith Kipyegon used it before winning the gold medal in the 1500m final in Budapest — but did not use it before her win in the 5,000m final or before any of her world records in the 1500m, mile, and 5,000m.

Herman Reuterswärd, Maurten’s head of communications, declined to share a full client list with LetsRun but claims two-thirds of all medalists from the 800 through 10,000 meters (excluding the steeplechase) used the product at the 2023 Worlds.

After years of trial and error, Maurten believes it has solved the GI issue, but those who have used their product have reported other side effects. Neil Gourley used sodium bicarbonate before almost every race in 2023, and while he had a great season — British champion, personal bests in the 1500 and mile — his head ached after races in a way it never had before. When Joe Klecker tried it at The TEN in March, he felt nauseous and light-headed — but still ran a personal best of 27:07.57. In an episode of the Coffee Club podcast, Klecker’s OAC teammate George Beamish, who finished 5th at Worlds in the steeplechase and used the product in a few races this year, said he felt delusional, dehydrated, and spent after using it before a workout this summer.

“It was the worst I’d felt in a workout [all] year, easily,” Beamish said.

Not every athlete who has used the Maurten Bicarb System has felt side effects. But the sport as a whole is still figuring out what to do about sodium bicarbonate.

Many athletes — even those who don’t have sponsorship arrangements with Maurten — have added it to their routines. But Jumbo-Visma’s top cyclist, Jonas Vingegaard — winner of the last two Tours de France — does not use it. Neither does OAC’s top runner, Yared Nuguse, who tried it a few times in practice but did not use it before any of his four American record races in 2023.“I’m very low-maintenance and I think my body’s the same,” Nuguse says. “So when I tried to do that, it was kind of like, Whoa, what is this? My whole body felt weird and I was just like, I either did this wrong or this is not for me.”

How sodium bicarbonate works

The idea that sodium bicarbonate — aka baking soda, the same stuff that goes in muffins and keeps your refrigerator fresh — can boost athletic performance has been around for decades.

“When you’re exercising, when you’re contracting muscle at a really high intensity or a high rate, you end up using your anaerobic energy sources and those non-oxygen pathways,” says Siegler, who has been part of more than 15 studies on sodium bicarbonate use in sport. “And those pathways, some of the byproducts that they produce, one of them is a proton – a little hydrogen ion. And that proton can cause all sorts of problems in the muscle. You can equate that to that sort of burn that you feel going at high rates. That burn, most of that — not directly, but indirectly — is coming from the accumulation of these little hydrogen ions.”

As this is happening, the kidneys produce bicarbonate as a defense mechanism. For a while, bicarbonate acts as a buffer, countering the negative effects of the hydrogen ions. But eventually, the hydrogen ions win.The typical concentration of bicarbonate in most people hovers around 25 millimoles per liter. By taking sodium bicarbonate in the proper dosage before exercise, Siegler says, you can raise that level to around 30-32 millimoles per liter.

“You basically have a more solid first line of defense,” Siegler says. “The theory is you can go a little bit longer and tolerate the hydrogen ions coming out of the cell a little bit longer before they cause any sort of disruption.”

Like creatine and caffeine, Siegler says the scientific literature is clear when it comes to sodium bicarbonate: it boosts performance, specifically during events that involve short bursts of anaerobic activity. But there’s a catch.

***

Bicarb without the cramping

Sodium bicarbonate has never been hard to find. Anyone can swallow a spoonful or two of baking soda with some water, though it’s not the most appetizing pre-workout snack. The problem comes when the stomach tries to absorb a large amount of sodium bicarbonate at once.

“You have a huge charged load in your stomach that the acidity in your stomach has to deal with and you have a big shift in the partial pressure of carbon dioxide across the gut,” Siegler says. “And that’s what gives you the cramping.”

A few years ago, Maurten was trying to solve a similar problem for marathoners trying to ingest large amounts of carbohydrates during races. The result was their carbohydrate drink, which relies on something called a hydrogel to form in the stomach. The hydrogel resists the acidity of the stomach and allows the carbohydrates to be absorbed in the intestine instead, where there is less cramping.

“We thought, okay, we are able to solve that one,” Reuterswärd says. “Could we apply the hydrogel technology to something else that is really risky to consume that could be beneficial?”

For almost four years, Maurten researched the effects of encapsulating sodium bicarbonate in hydrogels in its Swedish lab, conducting tests on middle-distance runners in Gothenburg. Hydrogels seemed to minimize the risk, but the best results came when hydrogels were paired with microtablets of sodium bicarbonate.

The result was the Maurten Bicarb System — “system,” because the process for ingesting it involves a few steps. Each box contains three components: a packet of hydrogel powder, a packet of tiny sodium bicarbonate tablets, and a mixing bowl. Mix the powder with water, let it stand for a few minutes, and sprinkle in the bicarb.The resulting mixture is a bit odd. It’s gooey. It’s gray. It doesn’t really taste like anything. It’s not quite liquid, not quite solid — a yogurt-like substance flooded with tiny tablets that you eat with a spoon but swallow like a drink.

The “swallow” part is important. Chew the tablets and the sodium bicarbonate will be absorbed before the hydrogels can do their job. Which means a trip to the toilet may not be far behind.

When Maurten launched its Bicarb System to the public in February 2023, it did not have high expectations for sales in year one.

“It’s a niche product,” Reuterswärd says. “From what we know right now, it maybe doesn’t make too much sense if you’re an amateur, if you’re just doing 5k parkruns.” 

But in March, Maurten’s product began making headlines in cycling when it emerged that it was being used by Team Jumbo-Visma, including by stars Wout van Aert and Primož Roglič. Sales exploded. Because bicarb dosage varies with bodyweight, Maurten’s system come in four “sizes.” And one size was selling particularly well.

“If you’re an endurance athlete, you’re around 60-70 kg (132-154 lbs),” Reuterswärd says. “We had a shortage with the size that corresponded with that weight…The first couple weeks, it was basically only professional cyclists buying all the time, massive amounts. And now we’re seeing a similar development in track & field.”

If there was a “Jumbo-Visma” effect in cycling, then this summer there was a “Jakob Ingebrigtsen” effect in running.To be clear: there is no official confirmation that Ingebrigtsen uses sodium bicarbonate. His agent, Daniel Wessfeldt, did not respond to multiple emails for this story. When I ask Reuterswärd if Ingebrigtsen has used Maurten’s product, he grows uncomfortable.

“I would love to be very clear here but I will have to get back to you,” Reuterswärd says (ultimately, he was not able to provide further clarification).

But when Maurten pitches coaches and athletes on its product, they have used data from the past two years on a “really good” 1500 guy to tout its effectiveness, displaying the lactate levels the athlete was able to achieve in practice with and without the use of the Maurten Bicarb System. That athlete is widely believed to be Ingebrigtsen. Just as Ingebrigtsen’s success with double threshold has spawned imitators across the globe, so too has his rumored use of sodium bicarbonate.

Grijalva says he started experimenting with sodium bicarbonate “because everybody’s doing it.” And everybody’s doing it because of Ingebrigtsen.

“[Ingebrigtsen] was probably ahead of everybody at the time,” Grijalva said. “Same with his training and same with the bicarb.”

OAC coach Dathan Ritzenhein took sodium bicarbonate once before a workout early in his own professional career, and still has bad memories of swallowing enormous capsules that made him feel sick. Still, he was willing to give it a try with his athletes this year after Maurten explained the steps they had taken to reduce GI distress.

“Certainly listening to the potential for less side effects was the reason we considered trying it,” says Ritzenhein. “I don’t know who is a diehard user and thinks that it’s really helpful, but around the circuit I know a lot of people that have said they’ve [tried] it.”

Coach/agent Stephen Haas says a number of his athletes, including Gourley, 3:56 1500 woman Katie Snowden, and Worlds steeple qualifier Isaac Updike, tried bicarb this year. In the men’s 1500, Haas adds, “most of the top guys are already using it.”

Yet 1500-meter world champion Josh Kerr was not among them. Kerr’s nutritionist mentioned the idea of sodium bicarbonate to him this summer but Kerr chose to table any discussions until after the season. He says he did not like the idea of trying it as a “quick fix” in the middle of the year.

“I review everything at the end of the season and see where I could get better,” Kerr writes in a text to LetsRun. “As long as the supplement is above board, got all the stamps of approvals needed from WADA and the research is there, I have nothing against it but I don’t like changing things midseason.”

***

So does it actually work?

Siegler is convinced sodium bicarbonate can benefit athletic performance if the GI issues can be solved. Originally, those benefits seemed confined to shorter events in the 2-to 5-minute range where an athlete is pushing anaerobic capacity. Buffering protons does no good to short sprinters, who use a different energy system during races.

“A 100-meter runner is going to use a system that’s referred to the phosphagen or creatine phosphate system, this immediate energy source,” Siegler says. “…It’s not the same sort of biochemical reaction that eventuates into this big proton or big acidic load. It’s too quick.”

But, Siegler says, sodium bicarbonate could potentially help athletes in longer events — perhaps a hilly marathon.

“When there’s short bursts of high-intensity activity, like a breakaway or a hill climb, what we do know now is when you take sodium bicarbonate…it will sit in your system for a number of hours,” Siegler says. “So it’s there [if] you need it, that’s kind of the premise behind it basically. If you don’t use it, it’s fine, it’s not detrimental. Eventually your kidneys clear it out.”Even Reuterswärd admits that it’s still unclear how much sodium bicarbonate helps in a marathon — “honestly, no one knows” — but it is starting to be used there as well. Kenya’s Kelvin Kiptum used it when he set the world record of 2:00:35at last month’s Chicago Marathon; American Molly Seidel also used it in Chicago, where she ran a personal best of 2:23:07.

 

Siegler says it is encouraging that Maurten has tried to solve the GI problem and that any success they experience could spur other companies to research an even more effective delivery system (currently the main alternative is Amp Human’s PR Lotion, a sodium bicarbonate cream that is rubbed into the skin). But he is waiting for more data before rendering a final verdict on the Maurten Bicarb System.

“I haven’t seen any peer-reviewed papers yet come out so a bit I’m hesitant to be definitive about it,” Siegler said.

Trent Stellingwerff, an exercise physiologist and running coach at the Canadian Sport Institute – Pacific, worked with Siegler on a 2020 paper studying the effect of sodium bicarbonate on elite rowers. A number of athletes have asked him about the the Maurten Bicarb System, and some of his marathoners have used the product. Like Siegler, he wants to see more data before reaching a conclusion.

“I always follow the evidence and science, and to my knowledge, as of yet, I’m unaware of any publications using the Maurten bicarb in a double-blind, placebo-controlled clinical trial,” Stellingwerff writes in a text to LetsRun. “So without any published data on the bicarb version, I can’t really say it does much.”

The closest thing out there right now is a British study conducted by Lewis Goughof Birmingham City University and Andy Sparks of Edge Hill University. In a test of 10 well-trained cyclists, Gough and Sparks found the Maurten Bicarb System limited GI distress and had the potential to improve exercise performance. Reuterswärd says the study, which was funded by Maurten, is currently in the review process while Gough and Sparks suggested further research to investigate their findings.

What about the runners who used sodium bicarbonate in 2023?

Klecker decided to give bicarb a shot after Maurten made a presentation to the OAC team in Boulder earlier this year. He has run well using bicarb (his 10,000 pb at The TEN) and without it (his 5,000 pb in January) and as Klecker heads into an Olympic year, he is still deciding whether the supposed benefits are worth the drawbacks, which for him include nausea and thirst. He also says that when he has taken the bicarb, his muscles feel a bit more numb than usual, which has made it more challenging for him to gauge his effort in races.

“There’s been no, Oh man I felt just so amazing today because of this bicarb,” Klecker says. “If anything, it’s been like, Oh I didn’t take it and I felt a bit more like myself.”

Klecker also notes that his wife and OAC teammate, Sage Hurta-Klecker, ran her 800m season’s best of 1:58.09 at the Silesia Diamond League on July 16 — the first race of the season in which she did not use bicarb beforehand.

A number of athletes in Mike Smith‘s Flagstaff-based training group also used bicarb this year, including Grijalva and US 5,000 champion Abdihamid Nur. Grijalva did not use bicarb in his outdoor season opener in Florence on June 2, when he ran his personal best of 12:52.97 to finish 3rd. He did use it before the Zurich Diamond League on August 31, when he ran 12:55.88 to finish 4th.“I want to say it helps, but at the same time, I don’t want to rely on it,” Grijalva says.

Almost every OAC athlete tried sodium bicarbonate at some point in 2023. Ritzenhein says the results were mixed. Some of his runners have run well while using it, but the team’s top performer, Nuguse, never used it in a race. Ritzenhein wants to continue testing sodium bicarbonate with his athletes to determine how each of them responds individually and whether it’s worth using moving forward.

That group includes Alicia Monson, who experimented with bicarb in 2023 but did not use it before her American records at 5,000 and 10,000 meters or her 5th-place finish in the 10,000 at Worlds.

“It’s not the thing that’s going to make or break an athlete,” Ritzenhein says. “…It’s a legal supplement that has the potential, at least, to help but it doesn’t seem to be universal. So I think there’s a lot more research that needs to be done into it and who benefits from it.”

The kind of research scientists like Stellingwerff want to see — double-blind, controlled clinical trials — could take a while to trickle in. But now that anyone can order Maurten’s product (it’s not cheap — $65 for four servings), athletes will get to decide for themselves whether sodium bicarbonate is worth pursuing.

“The athlete community, obviously if they feel there’s any sort of risk, they’re weighing up the risk-to-benefit ratio,” Siegler said. “The return has got to be good.”

Grijalva expects sodium bicarbonate will become part of his pre-race routine next year, along with a shower and a cup of coffee. Coffee, and the caffeine contained wherein, may offer a glimpse at the future of bicarb. Caffeine has been widely used by athletes for longer than sodium bicarbonate, and the verdict is in on that one: it works. Yet plenty of the greats choose not to use it.

Nuguse is among them. He does not drink coffee — a fact he is constantly reminded of by Ritzenhein.

“I make jokes almost every day about it,” Ritzenhein says. “His family is Ethiopian – coffee tradition and ceremony is really important to them.”

Ritzenhein says he would love it if Nuguse drank a cup of coffee sometime, but he’s not going to force it on him. Some athletes, Ritzenhein says, have a tendency to become neurotic about these sorts of things. That’s how Ritzenhein was as an athlete. It’s certainly how Ritzenhein’s former coach at the Nike Oregon Project, Alberto Salazar, was — an approach that ultimately earned Salazar a four-year ban from USADA.

Ritzenhein says he has no worries when it comes to any of his athletes using sodium bicarbonate — Maurten’s product is batch-tested and unlike L-carnitine, there is no specific protocol that must be adhered to in order for athletes to use it legally under the WADA Code. Still, there is something to be said for keeping things simple.

“Yared knows how his body feels,” Ritzenhein says. “…He literally rolls out of practice and comes to practice like a high schooler with a Eggo waffle in hand. Probably more athletes could use that kind of [approach].”

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(01/21/2024) Views: 491 ⚡AMP
by Let’s Run
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How Faith Kipyegon's track rival is planning to dethrone the golden girl

Faith Kipyegon's track rival has revealed her plans to dethrone the queen of the 1500m this season.

Laura Muir, one of Faith Kipyegon’s track rivals has opened up on plans to beat the double world record holder this season.

The Scottish woman noted that she has beaten Kipyegon before and even though it was not during a major championship, she believes anything is possible.

She added that all she will do will be to focus on herself and focus on what she can do best. The former World 1500m silver medalist also admitted that Kipyegon is the best 1500m runner at the moment and she comes off as a phenomenal athlete too.

“I think it helps that I’ve beaten her two or three times a few years ago. So I’ve done it, but not for a long time and never in a championship setting. But it's possible.

"There are lots of ways that I can improve this year, so it’s nice to know I can get faster and that we haven’t maxed out everything.

"But it seems to be that when I get faster, she then also gets faster. I was narrowing the gap a little bit when I ran 3:54 in Tokyo, but then she widened it again.

"All I can do is focus on myself and just be the best athlete I can be. And if that gets closer to her, and potentially a tiny chance of beating her, then that's all I can do.

"She's the best we've ever had. She’s a phenomenal athlete and deserves all the recognition she's had. It’s exciting to be a part of, but it's difficult to try and keep up,” she said as per Citius Mag.

The Olympic Games silver medalist also took a trip down memory lane to remember the Diamond League Meeting in Monaco where dozens of athletes set national records following Kipyegon’s world record over the mile.

She added that they were aware she would run a fast race and they knew she meant business. Muir also disclosed that it was great to be part of the team and it was an amazing occurrence to see how she delivered the world record.

“I remember going to Monaco and thinking, “I have to run my own race, I can't go with that.” As much as I like to believe in myself, that was beyond my capability.

"I knew I had to run my own race. I wanted to get the British record and by running my own race, I got that record. So, I was pleased with that,” she said.

Muir will also be going for the top prize at the Olympic Games, however, whatever the outcome, she noted that she would be satisfied.

“I've defended titles, I've broken records and championship records. The only thing that's missing is the global title, which is very hard to get…

"But I'm going to keep trying and that's all I can do. All I can do is focus on myself and work as hard as I can and get myself in the best shape I can. If that's enough to get on the podium, great. If that's enough to win, even better.

"I just love running, I love my training, and I feel very privileged to be in this position to be successful in the sport. I have gotten so much from it. I hope that I can continue for a few more years and get a few more medals as well,” she concluded.

(01/18/2024) Views: 337 ⚡AMP
by Abigael Wuafula
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I will inspire many girls after Paris Olympics – Kipyegon

Two-time Olympic 1500m gold medalist Faith Kipyegon is motivated and ready to write more history and break records in the Paris Olympic Games this year.

The 29-year-old who already has four world titles in 1500m and 5000m to her name, is also keen to enjoy the quadrennial championship and motivate the young girls from the continent and the world at large.

“I’m looking forward to Paris 2024, to step on that track and see what will happen,” Kipyegon said.

“That’s what we are looking for – to get to the Olympics, get to the track and just enjoy it and see what will come out.”

In 2023, as well as winning 1500m and 5000m gold medals at the World Athletics Championships in Budapest, Kipyegon broke three world records, in the 1500m, mile and 5000m.

It’s performances like these that she knows will further inspire the next generation, which is another of her aims in 2024.

“Outside of track, and after the Olympics, I think I will motivate and inspire many, especially young girls in my country and Africa and all over the world,” she says. “That is my motivation.

“I want to see them express their talent, follow my footsteps, and I want them to see good role models.”

Kipyegon has never been short of motivation.

Her international career began back at the World Cross Country Championships in Bydgoszcz in 2010.

Running barefoot in the freezing conditions, the then 16-year-old finished fourth in the U20 race.

The following year she got gold in Punta Umbria, before winning that year’s world U18 1500m title in Lille – her first global gold medal in the discipline.

World U20 gold followed in Barcelona in 2012, before senior world titles in London in 2017 and Oregon in 2022, plus Olympic gold medals in Rio and Tokyo.

(01/15/2024) Views: 352 ⚡AMP
by Evans Ousuru
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Paris 2024 Olympic Games

Paris 2024 Olympic Games

For this historic event, the City of Light is thinking big! Visitors will be able to watch events at top sporting venues in Paris and the Paris region, as well as at emblematic monuments in the capital visited by several millions of tourists each year. The promise of exceptional moments to experience in an exceptional setting! A great way to...

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Beatrice Chepkoech to open her indoor track season against two Ethiopian youngsters

Beatrice Chepkoech will be pitted against two Ethiopian youngsters in the women's 1500m at the ORLEN Copernicus Cup, a World Athletics Indoor Tour Gold meeting.

Ethiopian youngsters Diribe Welteji, and Freweyni Hailu will be up against Beatrice Chepkoech in the women’s 1500m field at the ORLEN Copernicus Cup, a World Athletics Indoor Tour Gold meeting, in Torun, Poland, on February 6.

21-year-old Welteji set a world record when winning the mile at the World Athletics Road Running Championships in Riga in October, as she clocked 4:20.98 as her compatriot Hailu finished second with Faith Kipyegon completing the podium.

Welteji and Hailu will team up again in Torun where they will be up against the world 3000m steeplechase record-holder Chepkoech. Other strong opponents in the field include Ethiopia’s world indoor 1500m bronze medallist Hirut Meshesha and Uganda’s 2019 world 800m champion Halimah Nakaayi.

Welteji has proven to be a master in the 1500m and she also doubles up as the World 1500m silver medallist, having finished runner-up to Kipyegon in Budapest in August. She will surely be the one to watch when the race begins.

Meshesha has the quickest short track PB of the quintet, having clocked 4:02.01 in Lievin last year, finishing second and one place ahead of Hailu who set a PB of 4:02.47. Chepkoech ran her national record of 4:02.09 in 2020.

Meanwhile, multiple US record-holder Grant Fisher will take on the already announced world champion Josh Kerr in the two-mile race at the Millrose Games, also a World Athletics Indoor Tour Gold event.

The race on February 11 is set to be paced with the world indoor two-mile best of 8:03.40 as the target. Joining them on the start line will be USA’s Joe Klecker, Cooper Teare, and Dylan Jacobs. New Zealand’s George Beamish, Australia’s Morgan McDonald, and Ky Robinson will also be in the mix and will be joined by Britain’s Matthew Stonier, Japan’s Keita Satoh, Ethiopia’s Samuel Firewu and Addisu Yihune, and Sam Parsons of Germany.

(01/15/2024) Views: 374 ⚡AMP
by Abigael Wuafula
Beatrice Chepkoech
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Faith Kipyegon not under the pump to deliver ahead of Olympic Games

Faith Kipyegon will be out to enjoy herself when she steps foot on the track at the Olympic Games and she awaits for the magic to happen.

With 199 days to go until the 2024 Paris Olympic Games, athletes are gearing up for a nail-biting experience and double World Champion Faith Kipyegon is definitely not an exception.

The 29-year-old was among the athletes who enjoyed an awesome 2023 season and all eyes will be on her to deliver on the global stage.

She broke three world records, the 1500m, 5000m, and one-mile world records before securing double gold at the World Championships in Budapest, Hungary.

She will seek to defend her 1500m title, having won gold in the two previous editions,s and will be looking forward to a hat trick.

However, Kipyegon is not under the pump to deliver and she will be keen to enjoy herself and let the world witness the wonder.

“I’m really looking forward to Paris 2024, to step on that track and see what will happen. That’s what we are looking for – to get to the Olympics, get to the track and just enjoy it and see what will come out,” the three-time World champion said as per World Athletics.

Off the track, Kipyegon wants to continue being a source of inspiration to the younger generation, just as she has done in the previous years.

“Outside of track, and after the Olympics, I think I will motivate and inspire many, especially young girls in my country and Africa and all over the world. That is my motivation.

“I want to see them to express their talent, follow my footsteps, and I want them to see good role models,” she added.

(01/09/2024) Views: 242 ⚡AMP
by Abigael Wuafula
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Ten reasons to be excited for 2024

There are many things to look forward to in the sport of athletics in the upcoming year.

There’ll be six global championships in 2024, with ever-expanding one-day meeting circuits spread throughout the year. Rivalries will be renewed, and record-breakers will continue to push boundaries in their respective disciplines.

Here are just 10 of the many reasons to be excited by what’s to come over the next 12 months.

1. Paris 2024 Olympic Games

Athletics is the No.1 sport in what will be the biggest event on the planet this year. 100 years after Paris last hosted the Games, the Olympics will return to the French capital where 2000 athletes from about 200 countries will compete for medals in 48 disciplines from August 1-11 . Expect duels, drama and record-breaking performances as athletes compete for the highest honor in the sporting world.

2. World Athletics Indoor Championships Glasgow 24

The first global track and field championships of the year will start in just two months’ time as Glasgow hosts the World Indoor Championships on March  1-3. In Belgrade two years ago, pole vaulter Mondo Duplantis and triple jumper Yulimar Rojas set world records to claim gold; they’ll be looking to add to their medal – and record – tally in Glasgow, as will a host of other top track and field stars.

3. World Athletics Relays Bahamas 24

For the first time since 2017, the World Relays will be held in the Bahamian capital as the global event returns to the venue of the first three editions. From May 4-5, athletes will be vying to secure their place in the 4x100m, 4x400m and mixed 4x400m for the Paris 2024 Olympic Games. Expectations of a nation rests on their shoulders – and their baton exchanges.

4. World Athletics Cross Country Championships Belgrade 24

Just two years after the Serbian capital hosted the World Indoor Championships, Serbia will this year play host to the world’s best cross-country runners. Recent editions of the event, in both Aarhus and Bathurst, have put athletes to the test on grueling courses, so expect more of the same on 30 March.

5. World Athletics U20 Championships Lima 24

After the latest successful edition of the World U20 Championships in Cali two years ago, the global event will return to South America as Lima becomes the first city in Peru to host a World Athletics Series event. The championships will take place from August 27-31, and will showcase the world’s most promising up-and-coming stars.

6. World Athletics Race Walking Team Championships Antalya 24

Is there room on the calendar for one more global event? Go on, then. For the first time ever in the history of these championships – including all previous iterations – Turkiye will play host to the World Race Walking Team Championships on April 21 . The first 22 teams here will automatically qualify for the marathon race walk mixed relay – the newest Olympic discipline – at the Paris Games.

7. One-day meeting circuits

While championship action is great, the likes of the Wanda Diamond League and World Athletics Continental Tour is where athletes can be seen in action week in, week out throughout the peak of the outdoor track and field season. Before that, there’s also the World Indoor Tour, while other series such as the Cross Country Tour, Combined Events Tour, Race Walking Tour and Label road races will provide competition opportunities throughout the year.

8. Record breakers

Athletes continued to push boundaries throughout the past 12 months on the track, field and roads. Expect more of the same in 2024 as the likes of Faith Kipyegon, Mondo Duplantis, Kelvin Kiptum, Yulimar Rojas and Ryan Crouser look to run, jump and throw better than they ever have done before.

9. Big clashes

Rivalries between the sport’s biggest stars always provide a gripping narrative for any season. For 2024, expect some mouth-watering clashes to come from the likes of Sydney McLaughlin-Levrone and Femke Bol in the 400m hurdles, Kelvin Kiptum and Eliud Kipchoge in the marathon, Gudaf Tsegay and Sifan Hassan in the 10,000m or Daniel Stahl and Kristjan Ceh in the discus to name but a few.

10. New stars

Every year a new generation of talent emerges. Some of those will be athletes who started to make a bit of a breakthrough towards the end of last year, while others may be athletes who fans have barely heard of. Either way, keep your eyes peeled as the season unfolds to witness the future stars of the sport mixing it with the world’s best athletes.

(01/03/2024) Views: 335 ⚡AMP
by World Athletics
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Paris 2024 Olympic Games

Paris 2024 Olympic Games

For this historic event, the City of Light is thinking big! Visitors will be able to watch events at top sporting venues in Paris and the Paris region, as well as at emblematic monuments in the capital visited by several millions of tourists each year. The promise of exceptional moments to experience in an exceptional setting! A great way to...

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Faith Kipyegon has shared her main motivation as she gears up to defend her title at the Olympic Games

Star girl Faith Kipyegon has shared her main motivation as she gears up to defend her title at the Olympic Games in Paris, France.

Double world record holder Faith Kipyegon has disclosed her major targets ahead of the 2024 Olympic Games in Paris, France.

The 29-year-old has achieved great milestones during the 2023 season and will be seeking to extend her hot streak to next season.

She will be focusing on inspiring even more people with a journey that she hopes will lead to an Olympic gold medal hat-trick.

“The goal for 2024 is of course the Olympics in Paris. That is the big goal. I want to defend my title, make history, and motivate young girls and mothers out there to know that everything is possible,” Kipyegon told World Athletics.

The double World champion has achieved a lot of accolades this year, thanks to her hard work and never-ending motivation.

She started her record-breaking spree at the Diamond League Meeting in Florence, Italy, where she broke the 1500m world record before dominating in Paris, France, with the 5000m world record.

The mother of one later broke the one-mile world record at the Meeting in Monaco before bagging the 1500m and 5000m titles at the World Championships in Budapest, Hungary.

Meanwhile, her coach Patrick Sang believes Kipyegon has all it takes to conquer at next year’s Olympic Games.

“I am only happy that we have somebody continue thinking positively of our sport. Whatever the outcome of this journey, the new journey that has been revitalized, whether it goes all the way to the marathon – we will be happy.

We still want to see her more on the track and she will probably end up where that dream is: running a marathon,” Sang added.

(12/19/2023) Views: 335 ⚡AMP
by Abigael Wuafula
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Paris 2024 Olympic Games

Paris 2024 Olympic Games

For this historic event, the City of Light is thinking big! Visitors will be able to watch events at top sporting venues in Paris and the Paris region, as well as at emblematic monuments in the capital visited by several millions of tourists each year. The promise of exceptional moments to experience in an exceptional setting! A great way to...

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American legend Michael Johnson left puzzled by World Athletics’ Awards decision

Johnson is puzzled by the decision to name six different individuals as World Athletes of the Year for the first time in history.

American sprint legend Michael Johnson has criticised World Athletics’ decision to hand the Athlete of the Year award to six different individuals terming it “a bad idea”.

The organisation made an odd decision to have six different categories, rather than the usual holistic award given to the best athlete of the year in both the male and female categories regardless of specialty.

The adaptation of the World Athlete of the Year honours awarded this year follows feedback received during the voting process. 

When it came to compiling the votes, athletes, fans and World Athletics Family members commented that it was incredibly hard to limit the vote to just one athlete, because of the various disciplines and the vast differences in skill sets required.

As a result, the 2023 World Athlete of the Year awards have been divided into three event categories: track, field, and out of stadia.

This has generated plenty of debate and division of opinions among many track and field runners, and Johnson, a four-time Olympic champion and eight-time world champion, remains puzzled by the decision.

“Am I the only person who thinks having six athletes of the year is a bad idea? Am I missing something?” Johnson wrote on X (formerly Twitter).

The 56-year-old has however admitted that there is some sense behind the decision having seen that the award recognises different categories.

“Just saw it is track, field, and out of stadia categories. So maybe it makes sense.”

Tigist Assefa, Mondo Duplantis, Kelvin Kiptum, Faith Kipyegon, Noah Lyles and Yulimar Rojas were the six individuals announced as World Athletes of the Year for 2023.

Assefa, Duplantis, Kiptum and Kipyegon set world records in their respective events in 2023, while all six World Athletes of the Year secured world titles or major marathon wins.

(12/13/2023) Views: 447 ⚡AMP
by Mark Kinyanjui
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World Athletics faces backlash for last-minute change to Athlete of the Year Awards

After months of discussion and voting on World Athletics’ social media pages for their prestigious World Athlete of the Year Award, the governing body of running/track and field did something no one could have predicted at the awards night on Monday in Monaco. For the first time in 35 years, the award was given to three men and three women, and fans across the sport are outraged.

Instead of giving out a men’s and women’s World Athlete of the Year award, as they’ve done in the past, they divided it into three categories: Track Athlete of the Year, Field Athlete of the Year, and Non-Stadia Athlete of the Year. Faith Kipyegon and Noah Lyles won the Track award, while pole vaulter Mondo Duplantis and triple jumper Yulimar Rojas won the Field award. Non-Stadia accolades went to the men’s and women’s new world record holders, Kelvin Kiptum and Tigist Assefa.

Online comments

The Internet was not impressed with World Athletics changing the format at the last minute (after the voting). Many thought deserving athletes like Kipyegon, Lyles and Kiptum were robbed of their glory and success. “What is the point of having finalists if everybody wins some category that wasn’t announced prior? It should have been clear you have categories from the start, not on the final day,” a fan tweeted.

“Such a useless ceremony,” tweeted another fan. Track and field sprint legend Michael Johnson even tweeted, “Am I the only person who thinks having six athletes of the year is a bad idea? Am I missing something?”

World Athletics’ reasoning

World Athletics said its decision to divide the award into three categories came from fans and council members, who commented that it was “incredibly hard” to limit the vote to just one athlete. That is what people say when they have a tough decision to make, meaning that World Athletics chose highly deserving finalists–not that they want to split the award. World Athletics president Sebastian Coe took it differently: “The depth of talent and the outstanding performances in our sport this year more than justify the expansion of the World Athletics Awards to recognize the accomplishments of these six athletes across a range of disciplines. It is only fitting that they be recognized as the athletes of the year in their respective fields,” Coe said in a press release.

Poor communication from World Athletics

When World Athletics named the 10 nominees for the award in late October, they did not indicate they were planning to divide the award three ways. Even when they narrowed it down to five finalists, there was no indication it would be split. Most fans would have been OK with three AOTY awards if they had known during the voting process that that would be the case.

In a sport that is always looking to grow and garner more attention, going against the grain of the community and fan votes is not a way to attract new people to the sport, especially heading into an Olympic year. Although it’s easy to understand World Athletics’ reasoning for splitting the award–it’s hard to compare athletes of different disciplines, especially since a pole vaulter like world champion Duplantis can only win accolades in one discipline, whereas Lyles or Kipyegon could win medals in two or three events. Still, World Athletics had three opportunities to inform the public they would be splitting the awards this year, and I am sure fewer fans would be disappointed in the outcome.

Imagine watching the Super Bowl and seeing them hand out an offensive, defensive and special teams MVP. It would make the award meaningless.

(12/13/2023) Views: 447 ⚡AMP
by Marley Dickinson
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Faith Kipyegon named World Track Athlete of the Year

On Monday night at the 2023 World Athletics Awards in Monaco, Kenya’s Faith Kipyegon took home top honours, capping off her nearly flawless season. The double world champion was named World Female Track Athlete of the Year, a title awarded to her by the public, her peers and the World Athletics Council.

Kipyegon made headlines by breaking three world records in the 1,500m, mile, and 5,000m events, in addition to clinching two world championship titles at the 2023 World Athletics Championships in Budapest. She successfully defended her world title in the 1,500m and won her first world championship over 5,000m, facing one of the deepest fields in the event’s history.

This historic achievement marks the first time a Kenyan woman has received the prestigious award since its inception in 1988. The previous winner was U.S. 400m hurdler Sydney McLaughlin-Levrone in 2022.

Throughout 2023, the 29-year-old mother pushed the boundaries of distance running, accomplishing feats that fans of the sport considered nearly impossible. Kipyegon became the first woman to complete the 1,500m in under three minutes and 50 seconds (3:49:11) and achieved another milestone by also becoming the first woman to run a sub-4:10 mile, clocking in at 4:07.64 at Monaco Diamond League in July.

For the first time ever, World Athletics split the Athlete of the Year award into three disciplines: track, field and non-stadia.

Yulimar Rojas of Venezuela won the Women’s Field Athlete of the Year, winning her fourth consecutive world championship title in the women’s triple jump and her third-straight Diamond League title. New women’s marathon world record holder Tigist Assefa of Ethiopia won the non-stadia award. Assefa shattered the women’s world marathon record at the 2023 Berlin Marathon, running an unbelievable 2:11:53, breaking the previous record by nearly two and a half minutes.

World Athletics said in a press release that their decision to divide the award into three categories came from fans and council members when they commented that it was “incredibly hard” to limit the vote to just one athlete.

(12/12/2023) Views: 433 ⚡AMP
by Marley Dickinson
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Promising 19-year-old Brenda Chebet slapped with ban for doping offense

Brenda Chebet is among the dozens of Kenyans who have made it to the list of shame after violating anti-doping rules.

Reigning world under-20 1500m champion Brenda Chebet is among the dozens of Kenyans to be banned by the Athletics Integrity Unit (AIU) as per the list of sanctions for doping and non-doping violations in November 2023.

Chebet has been slapped with a three-year ban due to the presence of S1.1 Anabolic Androgenic Steroids (AAS)/ methasterone and its metabolites 2a,17adimethyl-5a androstane-3a,17p-diol, 18-nor-17p-hydroxymethyl-17amethyl-2a-methyl-5a-androst-13-en-3-one (LTM).

Chebet’s period on ineligibility runs from September 3, 2023, to September 2, 2026, and as per the AIU, she has admitted to having breached the rules.

According to the AIU, Chebet’s all competitive results from the date of sample collection on July 8, 2023, are disqualified with all resulting consequences including forfeiture of any medal, points, and prizes.

Meanwhile, Chebet was one of the most promising youngsters who had been identified to be Faith Kipyegon’s heir.

The 19-year-old came to the limelight during the 2022 World Under-20 Championships in Cali, Colombia where she beat defending champion Purity Chepkirui to take the 1500m title.

Chebet was also in a class of her own during the World Cross-country Championships earlier this year where she oozed class to propel the mixed relay team to victory.

She had been selected to represent the country at the World Championships in Budapest, Hungary in what would have been her first time competing in an individual event in the senior category but was dropped from the team.

Chepkirui, who was suffering from injury setbacks replaced her. Questions arose about why she had been dropped from the team and now it is evident that the Kenyan had landed herself in hot soup.

(12/02/2023) Views: 585 ⚡AMP
by Abigael Wuafula
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Mary Moraa dreaming of breaking 800m world record soon

Mary Moraa has promised that she will attack the 800m world record very soon.

Reigning World 800m champion Mary Moraa has promised to go for the 800m world record very soon.

In a post on her Facebook page, Moraa shared a throwback photo of herself and double world record holder Faith Kipyegon. She was in awe of Kipyegon’s record-breaking spree and noted that she is an inspiration to many people.

She said: “When you step out in style with the world's middle distance track finest Faith Kipyegon. A great inspiration. Hii 800m World Record tutavunja siku moja...hivi karibuni (We shall one day break this 800m world record…very soon).”

The women’s world record over the 800m stands at 1:53.28 and was set by Jarmila Kratochvílová 40 years ago.

She clocked the time on July 26, 1983, at the Olympiapark Meeting in Munich’s Olympic Stadium and has remained to be the oldest outdoor world record in the book.

On her part, Moraa’s Personal Best time currently stands at 1:56.03, a time she clocked to win the race at the World Championships in Budapest, Hungary.

By winning the title, she became just but the third Kenyan woman to win the 800m on the global stage. She comes after Janeth Jepkosgei and Eunice Sum who won the titles in 2007 and 2013 respectively.

She has also been banked on severally to break the 800m world record and affirming her fans that she would surely go for it is a sign of light at the end of the tunnel.

The reigning Commonwealth Games champion is gearing up for the Olympic Games in Paris, France next year where she hopes to extend her winning streak. This season, she only lost one 800m race, the Prefontaine Classic.

(11/24/2023) Views: 479 ⚡AMP
by Abigael Wuafula
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World Athletics unveils finalists for 2023 World Athlete of the Year

On Tuesday, the finalists for the 2023 World Athlete of the Year award were unveiled on World Athletics’ social media pages. This award showcases the remarkable performances of the 2023 season that captivated the track and field audience.

The 10 finalists, representing eight countries, have left their mark on the world of athletics. Their stellar accomplishments spanned various disciplines, from triumphs at the 2023 World Athletics Championships in Budapest to setting world records at one-day meeting circuits, road races and other prestigious events across the globe.

Here are the five male and five female finalists.

Male finalists:

Neeraj Chopra (IND) – Javelin

World champion

Asian Games champion

Ryan Crouser (USA) – Shot Put

World champion

World record holder (23.56 meters)

Mondo Duplantis (SWE) – Pole Vault

World champion

Diamond League champion with a world record (6.23 meters)

Kelvin Kiptum (KEN) – Marathon

London and Chicago Marathon winner

Men’s marathon world record (2:00:35)

Noah Lyles (USA) – 100m/200m

World 100m and 200m champion (first man to win the double at worlds since 2015)

Undefeated in six finals at 200m

Female finalists:

Tigist Assefa (ETH) – Marathon

Berlin Marathon winner

Women’s marathon world record holder (2:11:53)

Femke Bol (NED) – 400m/400m hurdles

World 400m hurdles champion

World indoor 400m record holder (49.26 seconds)

Shericka Jackson (JAM) – 100m/200m

World 200m champion and 100m silver medalist

Diamond League 100m and 200m champion

Faith Kipyegon (KEN) – 1,500m/Mile/5,000m

World 1,500m and 5,000m champion

Set world records over 1,500m, mile and 5,000m (3:49.11/4:07.64/14:05.20)

Yulimar Rojas (VEN) – Triple Jump

World champion

Diamond League champion

The finalists were chosen through a three-way voting process involving the World Athletics Council, the World Athletics Family and track and field fans online. Fans had the opportunity to cast their votes online through World Athletics’ social media platforms, contributing to a record-breaking two million votes.

Canadian decathlon world champion Pierce LePage was one of the 11 nominees for the award but did not advance from the voting process. Voting concluded on October 28.

The World Athletes of the Year award will be named on Dec. 11, as part of the 2023 World Athletics Awards in Monaco.

(11/14/2023) Views: 500 ⚡AMP
by Marley Dickinson
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Faith Kipyegon looks to add marathon record to her collection in future

Double World and Olympic champion, Faith Kipyegon has expressed her desire to smash the World Marathon record in the coming years.

The 29-year-old mother of one reaffirmed her ambition to enter the fierce road racing competition when she is finished with the track.

Speaking on Citizen TV, Kipyegon revealed that her masterclass act in Monaco on July 22, where she smashed the world record in the one-mile race was her initial step towards venturing into the roads.

"The mile was my first road race as I look to take up a career in the marathon. Expect to see me in the next Berlin Marathon race. I will run the marathon one day," Kipyegon said.

"I intend to run every major marathon in the Abbott series including the BerIin, London, and Amsterdam," she added.

Kipyegon lavished praise on marathon icon Eliud Kipchoge for inspiring her to take a stab at the blistering 42km race.

"I train in Kaptagat with Eliud Kipchoge and Geoffrey Kamwaror in a global training camp and they have done quite a lot to inspire me to take an interest in the 42km race," Kipyegon stated.

"On Mondays, we do easy runs, and on Tuesdays, we are on track. We allow the men to start ahead of us and we try as much as we can to catch up. We cannot compete with them because their training is more intense. So we only work alongside them in easy runs.

"If you love something and have a passion for it,  then going for training doesn't become a burden," she quipped.

Kipyegon added that she hopes to reclaim the women's 5000m world record at the 2024 Paris Olympics after surrendering it to Ethiopia's Gudaf Tsegay in Eugene, Oregon on September 17.

"Winning three gold medals back-to-back in the Olympics will be incredible. It will motivate the coming generations and motivate me as well. I will have left a legacy.

"I have already won four Diamond Leagues and I intend to go all out for my fifth title next year.

Kipyegon spoke even as news streamed in that she had been nominated for the World Athletics Female Athlete of the Year award.

She will vie for the accolade alongside 11 other nominees unveiled by the world governing body on Wednesday. The winner will be announced on December 13.

The Kenyan track sensation made the list of nominees following a splendid season, where she smashed three world records at the Diamond League before running away with the 1500m and 5000m world titles at the World Athletics championships in Budapest, Hungary. 

(10/13/2023) Views: 497 ⚡AMP
by Tony Mballa
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BMW Berlin Marathon

BMW Berlin Marathon

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 still runs the BERLIN-MARATHON today, and...

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Kelvin Kiptum, Noah Lyles among 11 men shortlisted for World Athlete of the Year Award

World marathon record holder Kelvin Kiptum will battle it out for the Men’s World Athlete of the Year Award with 10 other athletes, including world 100m and 200m champion Noah Lyles

World marathon record holder Kelvin Kiptum has been shortlisted for the World Athletics’ Men’s World Athlete of the Year Award.

Kiptum, who ran an astonishing 2:00:35 at the Chicago Marathon on Sunday, is among 11 male athletes who had an outstanding 2023 season who have made the shortlist.

The 23-year-old has made the list after winning in Chicago and breaking Eliud Kipchoge’s world record by 34 seconds as well as claiming victory at the London Marathon in April, when he clocked 2:01:25, the second fastest time in history at the time.

Kiptum will battle it out for the prestigious award with American Noah Lyles, the world 100m and 200m champion who was undefeated in six finals at 200m.

Norwegian Jakob Ingebrigtsen, the world 5,000m champion and 1,500m silver medalist, who is also the European record holder in 1,500m, mile and 3,000m, is also among those shortlisted as well as Morocco’s Soufiane El Bakkali, the world 3,000m steeplechase champion, who was undefeated in six finals in 2023.

World javelin and Asian champion Neeraj Chopra from India, American Ryan Crouser, the world shot put champion and record holder, American-born Swede Mondo Duplantis, who is the world pole vault champion, and Decathlete Pierce LePage from Canada are also on the list.

World walking race champion Alvaro Martin from Spain, Miltiadis Tentoglou, the world long jump champion, and 400m hurdles world champion Karsten Warholm complete the 11-man shortlist.

A three-way voting process will determine the finalist wit the World Athletics Council and the World Athletics Family casting their votes by email, while fans can vote online via the World Athletics social media platforms.

Individual graphics for each nominee will be posted on Facebook, X, Instagram and YouTube this week; a 'like' on Facebook, Instagram and YouTube or a retweet on X will count as one vote.

The World Athletics Council’s vote will count for 50 per cent of the result, while the World Athletics Family’s votes and the public votes will each count for 25 per cent of the final result.

Voting for the World Athletes of the Year will close on October 28. At the conclusion of the voting process, five women and five men finalists will be announced by World Athletics on 13-14 November. The winners will be revealed on World Athletics’ social media platforms on 11 December.

Kiptum will be seeking to join Kipchoge and David Rudisha as the Kenyan men to have won the prestigious award while multiple world champion Faith Kipyegon seeks to become the first woman from the country to be feted.

(10/12/2023) Views: 499 ⚡AMP
by Joel Omotto
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Faith Kipyegon nominated for 2023 athlete of the year award

World 1,500m and mile world record holder Faith Kipyegon has been nominated for the female World athlete of the year award by World athletics.

The award is a prize that is awarded to athletes participating in events within the sport of athletics organised by World Athletics (formerly IAAF), including track and field, cross-country running, road running, and race-walking.

World athletics announced on Wednesday that 11 nominees have been picked for the female athlete of the year after selection from an international panel of athletic experts.

"World Athletics is pleased to confirm a list of 11 nominees for Women’s World Athlete of the Year. These athletes were selected by an international panel of athletics experts, comprising representatives from all six continental areas of World Athletics.” 

The athletics body said the nominations reflect performances from Budapest championships and other championships held in the year.

"In what has been another memorable year for the sport, the nominations reflect some of the standout performances achieved at the World Athletics Championships in Budapest 23, one-day meeting circuits, label road races and other events around the world." 

Kipyegon was selected after a memorable performance at the World Athletics Championships in Budapest where she won both the 1,500m and 5,000m races to become the first female in history of the championships to clinch double accolades.

She will face competition from Ethiopia’s Tigist Assefa who is the female World Marathon record holder with a time of 2:11.53 set at the Berlin Marathon in September.

Also joining the pair will be world record holder in the 5,000m Tsegay Gudaf of Ethiopia who set the record during the 2023 final Diamond League.

USA’s Sha’carri Richardson is also nominated alongside Kenyan-born Bahraini female athlete Winfred Yavi.

The 2020 Tokyo Olympics bronze medalist in the high jump Yaroslava Mahuchikh, Venezuelan Yulimar Rojas who holds the world record for women's triple jump, Jamaica’s Shericka Jackson who boosts of 5 Olympic medals and 8 World championships medals are also part of the list.

Winner of the 35km walk in Budapest, Maria Perez from Spain and 2023 world champion in the 400m Femke Bol conclude the list.

Voting for the World Athletes of the year will close on October 28 at midnight after which five women and five men finalists will be announced by World Athletics on November 13 and 14.

World athletics also said their vote would account for 50 per cent of the total results whereas the public vote and athletics family vote would each account for 25 per cent of the results.

The winners will be revealed on World Athletics’ social media platforms on December 11.

(10/11/2023) Views: 501 ⚡AMP
by Teddy Mulei
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Lessons from the long run: with Kipyegon, Kipchoge and Sang

The long run, for elite and amateurs alike, forms an integral part of distance runners’ training.

In the west of Kenya, 20km to the south-east of Eldoret, that weekly ritual takes place early on a Thursday morning.

At 6am sharp the first runners make their way out of the gates of the Global Sports Communications Camp in Kaptagat to join some local runners who will try to keep them company.

In the pitch-black late June morning, the runners have already woken up half an hour or so before to get dressed, take some sips of water and go to the toilet.

The 30 or so athletes do not eat beforehand. They have determined that there are benefits to running fasted, the most prominent being training your body to get better accustomed to taking energy from your body’s fat reserves, something that may be important when carbohydrates sources are depleted towards the end of a marathon.

Of course, these are experienced athletes. For the double Olympic champion making his way to the group, he has spent 20 years building up and adapting his body to such challenges.

What is possible for Eliud Kipchoge would be simply unsustainable, and even ill-advised, for athletes new to the sport.

This particular morning, coach Patrick Sang has assigned the ‘Boston loop’ – an undulating route with far more elevation than its namesake marathon, eventually finishing high on the escarpment a few hundred meters higher than the 2200m starting elevation at Kaptagat.

For the Global Sports group, it is simply 40km straight out; the minibuses and pick-up trucks following them picking them up after to drive them home.

Most of Sang’s athletes training for an autumn marathon are expected to complete the full distance, among them three-time world cross-country champion Geoffrey Kamworor, fellow 2:04 marathon-man Kaan Kigen Özbilen, Kipchoge and a collection of five others all boasting either sub-60-minute half marathon or sub-2:07 marathon bests.

World and Olympic medalist Linet Masai and 2:20 marathon runner Selly Chepyego, setting off 15 minutes beforehand, have also been set that distance goal.

For world and Olympic champion and multiple world record-holder Faith Kipyegon, today’s task is 30km. Despite being on the longer end of what might be expected from a 1500m runner, Kipyegon is insistent that this run is her favorite type of training.

It may also be some indication of the strength shown in her 5000m world record in Paris.

Sang’s final instructions are minimal. He does not prescribe paces, simply asking that his athletes set an honest pace, go on how they feel and try if possible to pick up the pace towards the end of their run.

The early footsteps are on a dirt road, the group paying attention to where their marathon-specific shoes land and running in silence. Information about tree routes or dips in the road is often communicated via hand signals pointing to the hazard.

From the off, the going is uphill and within 10km the group is receiving the first of their carbohydrate drinks being passed from the pick-up truck following them.

After 15km the group hits the first of the tarmac roads of the C51 and the pace then starts to rise, slowly and subtly.

As they do, they gradually catch the groups ahead of them.

Geoffrey Kirui, the 2017 world marathon champion, has been told to run by himself as he is returning from an injury. Sang has intentionally encouraged Kirui not to fall into the usual pitfalls of over-exerting himself to go with a group.

Likewise Daniel Mateiko – the ninth fastest half-marathon runner in history, boasting a 58:26 best – was told to set off a few minutes before and will then join the group up to about the 35km marker. Still only 24 years of age and racing over a shorter distance, Mateiko’s training has its own minimal differences with the shorter-distance athletes generally doing shorter long runs.

Throughout the run, Sang will come alongside in the pick-up, judging his athletes’ efforts from the way they run. He later tells us he can notice minor indications from the way they land their feet on whether recent training has taken its toll.

Little advice is given; those he coaches have done this route many times before. More welcome instead are the drinks passed around every 5km or so. The group stays intact for almost 30km before it slowly fragments, Sang encouraging his athletes to sustainably push their effort over the final kilometers.

Kipyegon herself is nearing the end of her run, gradually progressing throughout the 30km but not pushing herself to the point of depletion.

Unfortunately for her, the moment her watch completes the distance, a few minutes over two hours after she began, is almost the highest point the group will reach that day.

She stops, jogs slowly for a few hundred meters before jumping in the van.

About a litre of carbohydrate drinks consumed after her run, she will not eat until an hour or so later when the whole group returns to the camp.

A long line of runners scattered along the road has yielded to a few isolated pockets completing the full distance and the leading group has whittled down to four.

Though interspersed with steady rises, the final five kilometers are slightly downhill. Kipchoge, Özbilen, Laban Korir and Hillary Kipchirchir run four abreast, completing these last kilometers in a few seconds inside 15 minutes.

Two hours 22 minutes after they started, they finish their undulating 40km with over 500m of elevation at a pace about 30 minutes slower than their best marathon times. It is an effort they might refer to as ‘steady’ and one in the midst of a typical 220km training week.

Like Kipyegon, they consume about a litre of drink as they get in the vans and make the 40-minute journey home, eating a nutritionally simple meal of beans, ugali, vegetables and some protein upon their return.

Their reward? A rare afternoon without another run, some sleep and a lighter Friday of two short easy runs.

A similar routine in a different setting to runners throughout the world, there are morsels of lessons for the everyday runner.

Progress sustainably, hydrate appropriately and perhaps trust your effort over your watch.

(10/09/2023) Views: 528 ⚡AMP
by George Mallett for World Athletics
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Chebets sets focus on 2024 Olympic Games after stellar season

Commonwealth Games 5000m champion Beatrice Chebet has said she has honed her skills sufficiently to secure a podium finish at the 2024 Paris Olympic Games. 

Chebet, who blazed to the bronze medal in her specialty at the Budapest World Championships in July, said she is ready to secure the coveted gold at the quadrennial global extravaganza that will be held in July and August.  

"I have prepared well for the Olympics and I'm grateful for the fine form I've accomplished this year," Chebet said in an exclusive interview.

"Winning an Olympic medal is everyone's dream and I am no different," she added. 

Chebet spoke a couple of days after storming the gold medal in the 5km race at the inaugural World Road Running Championships held in Riga on Sunday. 

The victory confirmed her status as a dominant force on the international front.

She cruised through the course in an amazing 14:35 to register the fifth fastest time in the history of the 5km road race ahead of compatriot Lilian Rengeruk, and Ethiopia's Ejgayehu Taye, who settled for the silver and bronze medals respectively.

The victory further embellished her rich trophy cabinet which also boasts a gold bagged at the World Cross Country championship held in Bathurst, Australia in February.

Chebet said the presence of compatriot Faith Kipyegon in the race is a great source of inspiration, adding that she is not quaking in the boots at the mere thought of facing her over the distance. 

Despite crashing to Kipyegon and Sifan Hassan of The Netherlands in the 5000m at the World Championships in Belgrade, Hungary, Chebet said she will do her best to reclaim her bragging rights in the 12-lap race.

 "It will make the race all the more interesting and I believe the country is bound to benefit immensely if we field a strong team in Paris," Chebet said. 

"Her presence in the race will also take the competition a notch higher," she added. The International Olympic Committee (IOC) approved Kenya's request to field Kipyegon in both the 1500m and the 5000m races at the upcoming Paris Games. 

(10/06/2023) Views: 518 ⚡AMP
by Tony Mballa
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Focus shifts from track as road racing season heats up

As the international outdoor track and field season draws to a close, we now look forward to the feast of top-class road racing that will be on offer throughout the final four months of the year.

In just 11 days’ time, the focus of the sport will be on the World Athletics Road Running Championships Riga 23, where the best distance runners on the planet will compete for global honours in the mile, 5km and half marathon.

The likes of world champion Faith Kipyegon, world record-holder Berihu Aregawi and Olympic champion Peres Jepchirchir are among the stars set to compete in the Latvian capital. Recreational runners from around the world, meanwhile, will run on the same courses as the greats when they take to the streets of Riga for the associated mass races.

There are also eight Platinum Label road races between September and December, the first of which was held last weekend with Betsy Saina and Othmane El Goumri winning the Blackmores Sydney Marathon. Of the seven other upcoming Platinum events, three of them form part of the Abbott World Marathon Majors (WMM) series: the BMW Berlin Marathon, the Bank of America Chicago Marathon and the TCS New York Marathon.

Platinum Label road races, Sep-Dec 2023

8 Oct – Chicago Marathon (WMM)

15 Oct – Amsterdam Marathon

5 Nov – New York Marathon (WMM)

26 Nov – Shanghai Marathon

3 Dec – Valencia Marathon

17 Dec – Bang Saen Half Marathon

The Chicago Marathon two weeks later will be highlighted by a clash between defending champion Ruth Chepngetich and London Marathon winner Sifan Hassan.

Two-time Tokyo Marathon champion Birhanu Legese, the fourth-fastest marathon runner of all time, headlines the men’s field for the Amsterdam Marathon. Defending champion Evans Chebet will take on two-time winner Geoffrey Kamworor at the New York City Marathon in November.

For the first time since the Covid-19 pandemic, the Shanghai Marathon in late November will welcome an international elite field.

Just one week later, multiple global champion and world record-holder Joshua Cheptegei will make his long-awaited marathon debut in Valencia. In recent years the event has established itself as one of the highest-quality marathons in the world, and this year’s edition will surely be no exception.

Towards the end of the year, the Thai coastal area of Bang Saen will host one of the newest additions to the Platinum Label calendar, the Bangsaen21 Half Marathon. Since the pandemic, it has been largely a domestic affair, but it will be back with a bang this year with a high-quality elite line-up.

Hundreds of road races each year are granted a World Athletics Label, ranging from ‘Platinum’, for the top tier of road events, to Gold, Elite and Label. There are still more than 100 World Athletics Label road races due to take place between now and the end of 2023.

(09/24/2023) Views: 509 ⚡AMP
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Ethiopia’s Gudaf Tsegay sets 5,000m world record at Prefontaine Classic

On Sunday afternoon at the Diamond League Final in Eugene, Ore., world 10,000m champion Ethiopia’s Gudaf Tsegay almost achieved the unthinkable: breaking the women’s 5,000m world record in 14:00.20—nearly becoming the first woman in history to run a 5K under 14 minutes.

Tsegay surpassed the previous 5,000m world record of 14:05.20 by five seconds, which was set by her rival Faith Kipyegon earlier this year at the Paris Diamond League. Tsegay battled with world cross-country champion Beatrice Chebet until the final three laps when the Ethiopian pulled ahead.

The pace for the 5,000m final was set for 14:00 flat, with the pacers taking Tsegay and Chebet through 3,000m in 8:26.03. Tsegay threw down a 2:09 final 800m to shake off Chebet and become the first woman to threaten the 14-minute 5K barrier.

Chebet finished second behind Tsegay in 14:05.92, the third-fastest time in history. Ethiopia’s Ejgayehu Taye rounded out the Diamond League 5,000m final podium in 14:21.52. Kipyegon chose to run the 1,500m on Saturday and did not enter the women’s 5,000m at the Prefontaine Classic.

Tsegay had an up-and-down 2023 season, winning the world 10,000m title in Budapest, then finishing a disappointing 13th place in the world 5,000m final several days later.

This is the second world record of Tsegay’s career. In 2021, she ran an indoor 1,500m world record of 3:53.09 in northern France.

(09/18/2023) Views: 529 ⚡AMP
by Marley Dickinson
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Prefontaine Classic

Prefontaine Classic

The Pre Classic, part of the Diamond League series of international meets featuring Olympic-level athletes, is scheduled to be held at the new Hayward Field in Eugene. The Prefontaine Classicis the longest-running outdoor invitational track & field meet in America and is part of the elite Wanda Diamond League of meets held worldwide annually. The Pre Classic’s results score has...

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Beatrice Chebet sets lofty target ahead of next year's Paris Olympic Games

Chebet will be making her first appearance at the Olympic Games and she has already set her priorities right.

After closing the World Championships in Budapest, Hungary with a bronze medal in the women’s 5000m, Beatrice Chebet is now plotting a gold medal at next year’s Paris Olympic Games.

In a post-race interview after setting a world-leading time at the Xiamen Diamond League, she noted that she will be contesting for a gold medal but a podium finish will also be a great thing for her.

“I’m contesting for the gold medal but as long as I finish on the podium I think that will be okay,” she said.

The 23-year-old will be competing alongside compatriot Faith Kipyegon, who is also the current world record holder in the 1500m and 5000m. Kipyegon will be vying to bag double victory in the 1500m and 5000m.

However, before then, Chebet will be seeking to defend her Diamond League Final Trophy when she heads to the Meeting in Eugene, USA.

She won last year’s final which was held in Zurich, Switzerland in style and she will be seeking to bag back-to-back titles.

“I want to finish my season in Eugene, the last Diamond League then maybe I will go for a break then come back for training as I prepare for the Olympics,” Chebet said.

She also reflected on the outing in Budapest, Hungary, and noted that it was not a walk in the park since there were strong athletes on the field. Kipyegon and Dutchwoman Sifan Hassan finished first and second respectively.

“Budapest was not easy because there was a strong field with Faith, Sifan, and the Ethiopians. I’m glad I finished third,” he said.

(09/05/2023) Views: 447 ⚡AMP
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Paris 2024 Olympic Games

Paris 2024 Olympic Games

For this historic event, the City of Light is thinking big! Visitors will be able to watch events at top sporting venues in Paris and the Paris region, as well as at emblematic monuments in the capital visited by several millions of tourists each year. The promise of exceptional moments to experience in an exceptional setting! A great way to...

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4 Stunning Moments at the World Track and Field Championships

Here are the top moments at the World Athletics Championships in Budapest, and what to watch for this weekendThere’s just three action-packed days of track and field remaining in Budapest, Hungary for the 2023 World Athletics Championships. Whether you’ve spent the past six days glued to your streaming service or you’re just catching up, here’s a refresher on the top highlights so far, and what we’re looking forward to most this weekend.Sha’Carri Richardson proved that she is here to stay by winning the 100-meter final with a new championship record of 10.65. To do it, she had to take down her Jamaican rivals Shericka Jackson, the fastest woman in the world this year, and Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce, the reigning LLP world champion and 15-time world medalist.

After a poor showing in her semifinal, Richardson failed to achieve one of the auto-qualifiers and was placed in lane nine for the final. None of that mattered on race day, though, as the 23-year-old showcased the best acceleration over the final 30 meters of any runner in the field to claim gold from the outside lane. Jackson took silver in 10.72, while Fraser-Pryce ran a season’s best of 10.77 for bronze.

The victory marks Richardson’s first appearance at a global championship. She won the U.S. Olympic Trials in 2021, but was unable to compete in the Olympic Games in Tokyo after testing positive for marijuana, a banned substance. In 2023, Richardson said, she’s “not back, [she’s] better.”

Can magic strike twice, and can she earn another medal in the 200 meters? She’ll again face Jackson, the second-fastest woman in world history, as well as American Gabby Thomas, the bronze medalist in Tokyo and the fastest woman in the world this year.

The women’s 200-meter final is on August 25. On Saturday, August 26, Richardson and Thomas will team up to compete against Jackson and Fraser-Pryce in the 4×100-meter relay.The flamboyant American Noah Lyles has made clear his ultimate goal of breaking Usain Bolt’s world record of 19.19 in the 200 meters for nearly a year now, ever since breaking the American record, en route to his second world title last summer in Eugene. But to get there, coach Lance Brauman reveals in NBC docuseries “Untitled: The Noah Lyles Project,” the 200-meter specialist would need to improve his speed by focusing on the 100m.

Despite never making a U.S. team in the 100 meters before, Lyles muscled his way onto the podium at the USATF Track and Field Championships a week after getting COVID, and executed his race plan perfectly in Budapest to claim gold with a world-leading time of 9.83. Letsile Tebogo of Botswana set a national record of 9.88 to earn silver and become the first African to podium at a world championship, while Zharnel Hughes of Great Britain took home his first bronze medal.

“They said I wasn’t the one,” he said immediately after the race, in what is sure to be one of this world championship’s most memorable moments. “But I thank God that I am.”

Now his attention turns to a third world title in the 200 meter—and a potential world record. Only Bolt has won three straight world titles over 200 meters, and the Jamaican world record holder is also the last man to win the 100-meter/200-meter double back in 2015.

In a bizarre turn of events on Thursday, a golf cart transporting athletes including Lyles to the track for the 200-meter semi-finals collided with another cart. Several athletes had to be seen by a doctor before the race, and Jamaica’s Andrew Hudson was automatically advanced to the final after competing with shards of glass in his eye. Lyles was reportedly fine.

Tebogo and Hughes will be back for the 200-meter final, as well as Kenneth Bednarek and Erriyon Knighton, who completed the USA sweep with Lyles last year, and Tokyo Olympic champion Andre de Grasse of Canada.

The 200-meter finals are on Friday, and the 4 x 100-meter final is on Saturday.For the second year in a row, the best middle-distance runner in the world was outkicked in the world championship 1,500-meter final by a British athlete. This time, it was Josh Kerr who delivered the kick that broke Jakob Ingebrigtsen, winning his first world title in 3:29.38.

For the fiercely competitive Ingebrigtsen, the second-fastest man in world history in the event, silver is hardly any consolation for losing. Yet he nearly lost that as well — his Norwegian countryman Narve Gilje Nordås (who is coached by Jakob’s father Gjert) nearly beat him to the line, with Ingebrigtsen finishing slightly ahead, 3:29.65 to 3:29.68.Kerr, the Olympic bronze medalist in Tokyo, seemed to employ a similar tactic as last year’s upset winner Jake Weightman, who similarly sat and kicked with about 180 meters to go. Kerr and Weightman actually trained together as youth rivals at Scotland’s Edinburgh Athletic Club. Kerr now trains in the United States with the Brooks Beasts.

Ingebrigtsen revealed after the race that he had a slight fever and some throat dryness. He competed in the preliminary round of the 5,000 meters on Thursday, advancing to the final with the third-fastest time of the day. He is the reigning world champion and will race the final on Sunday.

While the path to victory looks difficult, at least one heavy hitter has removed himself from conversation — world record holder Joshua Cheptegei of Uganda, who already won the 10K this week, pulled out of the 5K with a foot injury.On the very first day of competition in Budapest, the Netherlands track and field federation suffered not one but two devastating falls while running within reach of gold.

Femke Bol was leading the anchor leg of the mixed 4×400-meter relay when she fell just meters from the finish line, leaving the Dutch team disqualified while Team USA captured the gold medal.

On the same night, countrywoman Sifan Hassan stumbled to the ground in the final meters of the 10,000 meters, going from first to 11th, while the Ethiopian trio of Gudaf Tsegay, Letesenbet Gidey and Ejgayehu Taye swept the podium positions.

Hassan was the first to get redemption, earning a bronze medal in the 1,500 meters in 3:56.00 behind only world record holder Faith Kipyegon of Kenya (3:54.87) and Diribe Welteji of Ethiopia (3:55.69). She reportedly did a workout immediately following the race, calling it “not a big deal,” and the next morning won her 5,000-meter prelim in a blistering 14:32.29 over Kipyegon, who also owns the world record over 5K (14:05.20). The two will face off in the final on Saturday.

On Thursday, 23-year-old Bol got her redemption run. With the absence of world record holder Sydney McLaughlin in her signature event of the 400-meter hurdles, the gold was Bol’s for the taking and she left no mercy on the field. She stormed to her first World Championships gold medal in the 400-meter hurdles with a dominant effort of 51.70, with the United States’ Shamier Little nearly a full second behind in 52.80. Jamaica’s Rushell Clayton took bronze in 52.81.

Bol will return to the track for the women’s 4 x 400-meter relay final on Sunday. The Dutch was also disqualified in this event last year at Worlds and will seek to record a result at all expense.

(08/26/2023) Views: 909 ⚡AMP
by Outside Online
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Sifan Hassan did workout immediately after her 1,500m final

If competing in three distance events in nine days at the 2023 World Athletics Championships wasn’t hard enough, Dutch athlete Sifan Hassan completed 400m repeats after Tuesday night’s 1,500m final, where she won bronze in 3:56.00.

Hassan told the media in Budapest after her 5,000m heat on Wednesday evening that she did a speed workout of five 400m reps in around 65 seconds with 40 seconds of rest, even though she had the 5,000m heats less than 24 hours later.

“I was just doing some easy making kilometers, some 400s,” says Hassan. “It’s not really a big deal. They (the media) make it a big deal.”

The 30-year-old reigning London marathon champion said her reasoning behind the workout was to continue to prepare for the 2023 Chicago Marathon on Oct. 8. “In six weeks, I have to run the Chicago Marathon,” says Hassan. “I am trying to prepare for that.”

Her triple at worlds got off to a rough start, falling in the final 50 meters of the women’s 10,000m on Day 1, finishing 11th. She won her first medal of the championships on Tuesday evening in the 1,500m, but faltered in the final 50 meters, conceding silver to Ethiopia’s Diribe Welteji, while Faith Kipyegon defended her world title.

On Wednesday night, she squared up against Kipyegon again in the heats of the women’s 5,000m. Hassan won the heat in 14:32.29 over Kipyegon, both qualifying for Saturday’s final, which will be Hassan’s last race at the 2023 World Athletics Championships.

(08/24/2023) Views: 520 ⚡AMP
by Marley Dickinson
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World Athletics Championships Budapest 23

World Athletics Championships Budapest 23

From August 19-27, 2023, Budapest will host the world's third largest sporting event, the World Athletics Championships. It is the largest sporting event in the history of Hungary, attended by athletes from more than 200 countries, whose news will reach more than one billion people. Athletics is the foundation of all sports. It represents strength, speed, dexterity and endurance, the...

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Faith Kipyegon storms to her second straight 1,500m world championship victory

It was her race to lose–Kenya’s Faith Kipyegon, who is indisputably the greatest 1,500m runner the world has ever seen, would have had to make a serious mistake (or suffer a freak injury) to avoid winning the women’s 1,500m in Budapest on Tuesday. Neither happened, and the double Olympic champion and now three-time world champion and world record holder takes home another gold medal, with a finishing time of 3:54.87.

Former world junior champion Diribe Welteji of Ethiopia ran a smart race, positioning herself just behind Kipyegon near the start, and took home silver, in 3:55.69. And Olympic bronze medalist Sifan Hassan of the Netherlands, after a disastrous 10,000m race on Sunday in which she fell in the final meters of the race she was leading, came from behind with her trademark finishing kick to take home bronze in 3:56.00.

Ciara Mageean of Ireland, the 2022 European silver medalist, ran an excellent race also, finishing fourth with a national record in 3:56.61. Nelly Chepchirchir of Kenya, who finished fifth, ran a personal best (3:57.90).

2022 bronze medalist Laura Muir of Team Great Britain ran 3:56 in the semi-final and was in the race for the first couple of laps, but ultimately faded to sixth (3:58.58).

After a fast first 100m, the race became very slow and tactical, but surprisingly, no one attempted to challenge Kipyegon’s lead, and allowed her to control the pace; the leaders went through 800m in 2:11 and were at 2:58 at the bell. And of course she closed lightning fast, with a 56.5-second final lap, completely unchallenged.

It was also Kenya’s first gold medal of the games. When asked in a post-race interview how it felt to bring home her country’s first gold medal of the games, the humble Kipyegon responded, “I’m so grateful,” and she repeated this when asked whether she felt that this third world title cemented her legacy as the greatest-ever 1,500m runner, adding that nothing in particular had changed in her training with coach Patrick Sang (who is coach also to marathon world record holder Eliud Kipchoge) to get her the extraordinary results she has seen so far this year.

Kipyegon set the world record at the distance at the Florence Diamond League earlier this season, becoming the first woman in the world to go sub-3:50. She, along with Hassan, will also race the 5,000m, which has been rescheduled from Wednesday morning to Wednesday evening, due to the extreme heat and humidity in Budapest. 

You can watch the World Athletics Championships live in Budapest at cbcsports.ca. For full results, click here. 

The 2023 World Athletics Championships are taking place from August 19-27 at the National Stadium in Budapest, Hungary. All the action will be brought to you by Canadian Running and Asics Canada. Follow us on Twitter on Instagram for all things Team Canada and up-to-date exclusive news and content.

(08/23/2023) Views: 532 ⚡AMP
by Anne Francis
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World Athletics Championships Budapest 23

World Athletics Championships Budapest 23

From August 19-27, 2023, Budapest will host the world's third largest sporting event, the World Athletics Championships. It is the largest sporting event in the history of Hungary, attended by athletes from more than 200 countries, whose news will reach more than one billion people. Athletics is the foundation of all sports. It represents strength, speed, dexterity and endurance, the...

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Silver medalist Brenda Chebet will target 1500m in Budapest

The 2022 World Under 20 silver medalist Brenda Chebet has pledged to storm the final of the 1500m race at World Athletics Championships in Budapest on her debut in the senior ranks.

Chebet, 19, was enlisted on the Kenyan continent for the premier annual global showpiece at the eleventh hour to replace Purity Chepkirui Thursday who withdrew from the team last week. 

Speaking before departing for the championships, Chebet thanked Athletics Kenya for allowing her to compete for the nation in the Hungarian capital, saying she will not disappoint.

"I feel great having graduated to the senior's stage and received an invitation to compete in the World Championships," Chebet said.

She predicted abrasive competition from a rich field of rivals including her compatriots. 

"It won't be easy because we have some very gifted runners in the race such as Faith Kipyegon and the Ethiopians, who are known to pose a great challenge. I'll do my best in the race and wait to see how things will turn out," she said.

The diminutive runner said she feels privileged to be on the same team as Kenyan track queen Kipyegon, who boasts a world record over the distance.

 "Competing against Kipyegon means a lot to me because this will be the first time we shall be competing in the same event. She is a celebrated runner and any athlete would be proud to be in the same race with her," said Chebet. 

"Let's hope I'll make it to the final and then we can see what to do next."

She heads into the race buoyed by a sterling performance in Bathurst, Australia in February, where she and teammates Emmanuel Wanyonyi, Miriam Cherop, and Kyumbe Munguti delivered a gold medal in the mixed relay at the World Cross Country Championships.

The four wrapped up the race in 23:14 minutes ahead of bitter rivals Ethiopia's Adehera Kasaye, Hawi Abera, Getnet Wale, and Birke Haylom (23:21).

 Chebet also won the silver medal in the 1500m at the 2022 World Athletics U20 Championships in Cali, Colombia, running a personal best time of 4:04.64, behind Haylom.

In June 2022 Chebet finished fourth in her specialty at the African Championship in Saint Pierre, Mauritius. She followed that with a sixth place finish in the women's 800m final. 

 

(08/18/2023) Views: 498 ⚡AMP
by Tony Mballa
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World Athletics Championships Budapest 23

World Athletics Championships Budapest 23

From August 19-27, 2023, Budapest will host the world's third largest sporting event, the World Athletics Championships. It is the largest sporting event in the history of Hungary, attended by athletes from more than 200 countries, whose news will reach more than one billion people. Athletics is the foundation of all sports. It represents strength, speed, dexterity and endurance, the...

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Faith Kipyegon now plans to attack the 40-year-old 800m world record

Her main focus at the moment is to successfully defend her world title when she heads to Budapest later this month.

Triple world record Faith Kipyegon might be targeting the 40-year-old 800m world record if a chance presents itself. 

Kipyegon has a personal best time of 1:57.68, which she ran to win the Diamond League Meeting in Doha, Qatar in 2020. The last time she ran the two-lap race was last year during the Trials for the Commonwealth Games and World Championships where she finished.

After three world records, will Kipyegon consider lowering Czechia’s Jarmila Kratochvílova world record time of 1:53.48?

“I don’t know…800m is not easy…but anything is possible. For now, I leave that one for Mary Moraa, she is capable…or Athing Mu and Keely Hodgkinson.

They are all capable of breaking that barrier in the 800m. But if a chance comes whereby I am able to try, I’ll appreciate it,” Kipyegon told Olympics.com.

Her main focus at the moment is to successfully defend her world title when she heads to Budapest later this month.

She admitted to pressure ahead of the event since she will be doubling in the 1500m and 5000m. Her performance at the World Championships will determine greatly whether she will also be doubling at the Paris Olympics.

“I can’t go there like just an athlete, now I have three world records, they expect a lot from me. But going to Budapest, I have to just be myself and run my races and see what will happen at the finish line.

Having fun, enjoying sports and even life is amazing… it has been the drive of our success. It helps mentally (by distracting) you from thinking of races every day and upcoming races and what you want to achieve or what will be the outcome,” she said.

(08/01/2023) Views: 479 ⚡AMP
by Abigael Wuafula
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World Athletics Championships Budapest 23

World Athletics Championships Budapest 23

From August 19-27, 2023, Budapest will host the world's third largest sporting event, the World Athletics Championships. It is the largest sporting event in the history of Hungary, attended by athletes from more than 200 countries, whose news will reach more than one billion people. Athletics is the foundation of all sports. It represents strength, speed, dexterity and endurance, the...

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Faith Kipyegon obliterates women’s mile world record by almost five seconds

On Friday at the Monaco Diamond League, Kenya’s Faith Kipyegon ran the fastest women’s mile in history, breaking her third distance world record in the last two months. The 29-year-old mom clocked a jaw-dropping 4:07.64, taking over four seconds off the previous mile record.

In her first mile race since 2016, Kipyegon led the race from start to finish, going through the first 800 in 2:04 and closing in a negative split 2:03. Kipyegon broke the former mile world record of 4:12.33 set by Sifan Hassan of the Netherlands at the same meet in 2019.

It has been a sensational season for the women’s Olympic and world champion in the 1,500m, who previously lowered the 1,500m and 5,000m world records in June over a seven-day span. There was never a doubt heading into the meet that Kipyegon would break the record, but the question was by how much–and she made a statement, becoming the first woman to run a mile under 4:10.

The mile world record was the only record broken in the race, Kipyegon dragging six athletes to their own respective national records in the mile. Ireland’s Ciara MaGeean finished behind Kipyegon in an Irish national record of 4:14.58, and Ethiopia’s Freweyni Hailu, who went out with Kipyegon through the first two laps, finished third in a season’s best 4:14.79. Olympic 1,500m silver medallist Laura Muir finished fourth in a British national mile record of 4:15.24.

(07/21/2023) Views: 581 ⚡AMP
by Running Magazine
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Faith Kipyegon contemplates doubling at World Championships

Double world record holder Faith Kipyegon is contemplating whether to compete in both the 1500m and 5000m at the World Championships in Budapest, Hungary, in August.

Kipyegon who holds the world records for the two distances said she is consulting widely before making a decision.

Speaking when she was named the LG/Sports Journalists Association of Kenya player of the month for June, Kipyegon said: "I will start my journey of defending my world title at the national trials this weekend."

"However, I am still consulting on whether I should double at the World Championships."

Kipyegon, a two-time Olympic champion over 1500m, said since she is qualified for Budapest after winning the world title in Oregon last year, she will compete in the 5000m race at the Athletics Kenya trials set for Friday and Saturday at the Nyayo Stadium.

This, she said, will also form part of her preaparations for the July 21 Monaco Diamond League.

At her training base at Global Sports Communication in Kaptagat, Uasin Gishu county, Kipyegon was crowned by the scribes after running two consecutive world records over 1500m and 5000m last month.

In Florence, Italy, on June 2, Kipyegon tore Genzebe Dibaba's record over 1500m with a new world mark of 3:49.11 over 1500m.

She was at it again in Paris a week later as she timed a new world record of 14:05.20 over 5000m.

“I’m so happy to be among the few athletes to win this award more than twice,” Kipyegon said.

 

“It's always good to see corporate entities acknowledge the good work of athletes. I am thankful to LG for their efforts to whip up the enthusiasm of sportsmen and women in this country. The win in Florence boosted my confidence levels and I feel I have to continue pushing for better track limits.”

She becomes the second athlete, after Angela Okutoyi, to win the SJAK award thrice. Kipyegon beat five other nominees among them Commonwealth Games champion Beatrice Chebet who produced a scintillating run to clinch the 3,000m title at the Oslo Diamond League in eight minutes, 25.01 seconds, which also counted as the latter's new personal best and world leading time.

Others were Carl Tundo and McRae Kimathi for their WRC2 and WRC3 finishes on the Safari Rally,  Moses Shumah for scoring Harambee Stars solitary goal at the Four Nations Tournament, Emma Wangila Nekesa for being the only African wrestler and Kenyan to have qualified for the World Beach Games in Indonesia.

Maureen Kemunto, LG East Africa Corporate Marketing and communication manager, said: “LG has been actively supporting the identification and recognition of sporting talent in Kenya through a partnership with SJAK."

"The purpose of this award is to recognise exceptional Kenyan sportsmen and women for their achievements across diverse disciplines each month and also to signify our commitment to contribute to the development of sport in the country."

SJAK President James Waindi congratulated Kipyegon and thanked LG for their continued support over the past eight years.

“With the monthly award, we are seeing a growing number of upcoming and talented sports personalities among them Angela Okutoyi who won the Wimbledon Open Junior category and won this award for a record three times, "said Waindi.

" Rewarding sportsmen and women is an important step towards whipping up the enthusiasm of sports personalities across all disciplines.”

(07/06/2023) Views: 583 ⚡AMP
by Emmanuel Sabuni
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World Athletics Championships Budapest 23

World Athletics Championships Budapest 23

From August 19-27, 2023, Budapest will host the world's third largest sporting event, the World Athletics Championships. It is the largest sporting event in the history of Hungary, attended by athletes from more than 200 countries, whose news will reach more than one billion people. Athletics is the foundation of all sports. It represents strength, speed, dexterity and endurance, the...

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Why Are Runners Suddenly So Fast?

Records are falling and times are dropping. Is it the shoes, or something else?

Consider the Paris Diamond League meet in early June. Jakob Ingebrigtsen smashed the two-mile world best by more than four seconds, becoming just the second man to run back-to-back sub-four-minute miles. Then Faith Kipyegon notched her second world record in a row, outsprinting the reigning record-holder over 5,000 meters just a week after becoming the first woman under 3:50 in the 1,500 meters. Then, to cap the night, Lamecha Girma took down the steeplechase record.

It was a great night—but it was just one of many great nights that track fans have been treated to recently. A week later, at the historic Bislett Games in Oslo, eight men broke 3:30 for 1,500 meters in one race, setting a new record—including Yared Nuguse, who set a new U.S. best. Meet records fell in almost every event. At the collegiate level, an analysis by Oregon-based coach Peter Thompson shows that the number of middle- and long-distance runners hitting elite benchmark times has doubled, tripled, or in some events even quadrupled in the last two years. Earlier in June, four high-school boys broke four minutes for the mile in a single race, matching the total number of people who’d done it in history prior to 2011.

I could go on.

There are two main questions that arise from this buffet of speed. First, is it real? Are runners getting faster across the board, or are we just being fooled by the brilliance of a few individuals and random fluctuations in the depth of different events? Second, if it’s really happening, then why? The easy answer is, “It’s gotta be the shoes” (or, in this case, the super spikes), but does the data really back that up?

I don’t have any definitive answers at this point, but here are my thoughts on some of the possible explanations.

It’s easy to make an anecdotal case that runners are faster than ever. Backing that up with data isn’t quite as straightforward. If you look only at whether the top-ranked time in the world is getting faster or slower from year to year, any trends will depend on whether you happen to have a generational athlete in the event at a given point in time. The effect of an Usain Bolt is bigger than the effect of, say, a new shoe design. Even if you go deeper, the top ten times in any year often come from just one or two races that took place in exceptionally good conditions. So you’re better off looking farther down the list.

For example, here’s some data for the men’s 1,500 meters between 2009 and 2022, drawn from the World Athletics database. I’ve shown the first, tenth, 100th, and 1,000th ranked performers (not performances) for each year. The horizontal dashed lines show the average for 2009 to 2018. The first super spike prototypes had shown up on the circuit by 2019 at latest, and were widely available by 2021. The big spike of slower times in 2020 is because there were so few races due to the pandemic.

The number-one times don’t show any particular trend. The tenth-best times show a dip since 2021, but no bigger than the dip in 2014-2015 (which corresponded to two particularly fast races in Monaco). For the 100th and 1,000th best times, the pre-pandemic data finally starts to look more consistent, which makes the dip since 2021 more telling. The 1,000th-best performer is now 0.9 percent faster than the pre-pandemic average, and the 100th-best is 0.5 percent faster. This is smaller than the 1.3-percent estimate derived from lab testing of super spikes, but in the ballpark.

Here’s comparable data for the women’s 5,000 meters:

Again, the first- and tenth-ranked times fluctuate too much to draw any conclusions. The 100th and 1,000th places do show an apparent drop in the last few years, by 1.9 and 2.0 percent respectively—more than the lab estimate. There are lots of possible explanations for this discrepancy, including that the benefits of super spikes are reduced at faster speeds.

I’ll add one more graph just for context. Supershoes came to road running way back in 2016 (for prototypes) and became widely available by 2018. I think most observers agree that these shoes really have affected road-running times. So what does the comparable data show for, say, men’s marathon times? Here it is:

The data is confounded by the effects of the pandemic, particularly in 2020. Still, the post-supershoe improvement looks fairly similar to the track data. Compared to the 2009 to 2016 average, last year’s times were 0.7 percent faster at tenth, 1.6 percent faster at 100th, and 1.3 percent faster at 1,000th.

The conclusion I take from all this data? It does like there’s something going on, both on the track and on the roads. But it’s way less obvious in the data than I expected. My subjective feeling was that the last few years have seen records broken and times redefined at a totally unprecedented rate. I thought I’d see robust improvement of at least three or four percent. But that scale of change is not there, at least in the events I sampled.

So with that in mind, what explains the changes we do see?

My starting assumption is that any performance improvements we’ve seen in the last few years are because of the shoes. I’m not going to belabor that point here, because I’ve already written plenty on both road supershoes and super spikes.

But I do want to make one key point. The reason my prime suspect is the shoes is that we have direct laboratory evidence that both types of shoes improve running economy, by around 2 percent on the track and at least 4 percent on the roads (and, to complete the circle, lab evidence that improved running economy directly translates to faster race times). It would take some weird and hitherto undiscovered science in order for the shoes not to make us faster. In contrast, the other hypotheses that I’m going to discuss below may be compelling to various degrees, but all rely on some assumptions and guesses and hand-waving.

Here’s a sentence you wouldn’t have read prior to 2018, from Letsrun’s description of Kipyegon’s thrilling 1,500 world record in Florence: “Kipyegon sprinted away from the pacing lights with 200m to go, lengthening her gap from the green lights as she rounded the turn and entered the home straightaway.” I wrote about World Athletics’s introduction of Wavelight pacing lights when Joshua Cheptegei set the 5,000-meter world record in 2020, positing that more even splits could make a notable difference to times. Good pacing has been a hallmark of this year’s records too, all assisted by Wavelight.

Wavelight doesn’t factor in on the roads, but ever since Eliud Kipchoge’s sub-two marathon exhibitions, big-time marathons have devoted more attention to providing top-notch pacers for their elite runners. That has the double benefit of saving the mental effort of setting the pace, and of reducing air resistance. I think good pacing and drafting are both beneficial. But that can’t explain why the 100th and 1,000th performers seem to be getting faster, because Wavelight and paid rabbits are generally reserved for the front of the pack.

Freed from the tyranny of over-frequent racing during lockdowns, runners spent 2020 building up a massive base of endurance that has catapulted them to new levels. It’s even possible that, having learned their lesson, they’ll continue with this more patient approach to training. This theory has the disadvantage of being both unprovable and unfalsifiable. That doesn’t necessarily mean it’s untrue, but if performance levels don’t start regressing to their pre-pandemic means over the next few years, I’ll remain skeptical.

It’s the “big, sexy thing” in endurance training these days, as miler Hobbs Kessler put it in a recent interview: lactate-guided double-threshold training, as popularized by Norwegian Olympic champions Jakob Ingebrigtsen and Kristian Blummenfelt. As I explained in this article, the approach emphasizes high volumes of threshold training with very tight control on the intensity to avoid going too hard. Whether it’s objectively better than other training approaches remains to be seen—but it hasn’t yet been adopted widely enough to make a noticeable impact on the top-1,000 list.

In the past, when I’ve looked at broad trends in performance over time, one of the first factors I’ve considered is changes in drug availability or drug testing. It’s extremely noticeable (though of course not proof of anything) that long-distance track times took off like a rocket shortly after the introduction of EPO in the early 1990s. If you look carefully, you can find what seems to be the performance signature of various drug-related events like the introduction of EPO testing and, more recently, the implementation of athlete biological passports.

Is there something new on the scene over the last few years? Or are we still seeing the effects of pandemic-related disruptions in out-of-competition drug testing? I certainly hope it’s not the case, but you’d have to be amnesiac to discount the possibility entirely. Once again, the best counterargument is that the performance improvements are noticeable even at the 1,000th-best level—though perhaps I’m being naive.

As you can probably tell, I don’t think any of the alternative explanations I’ve offered so far hold water compared to my default assumption that it’s the shoes. But this last category is a little different. If you spend enough time arguing with people about why runners are getting faster, you’ll encounter a number of broad, hand-waving theories that are hard to substantiate but nonetheless sound reasonable.

For example, I can attest to the fact that the Internet has made training knowledge far more widely accessible than it was when I was a young athlete in the 1990s. Ideas and approaches (like the Norwegian model) are endlessly debated and dissected, and any student of the sport is exposed to multiple perspectives. (In contrast, when I arrived at university and found that the workouts were different from those I’d done in high school, I thought the world was ending.) This theory has been offered frequently over the last decade or more as an explanation for steadily improving U.S. high school times. Maybe it’s true more broadly: people everywhere simply know more about the principles of training, and are doing it better (or at least fewer people are doing really stupid training) compared to the past. Even if elite coaching was always pretty good, this creates a wider pyramid of prospective talent feeding into the elite coaches.

I also have the sense that the pendulum has swung away from sit-and-kick racing towards aggressive front-running. After the 2019 world championships, where super spikes first made headlines, I wrote an article about the unusually fast early paces of the races. Jakob Ingebrigtsen, the current king of the 1,500, is notable for running from the front and pushing the pace rather than relying on a finishing sprint—which likely helps explain why he led those seven other men under 3:30 in Oslo. If runners these days are more focused on running fast times rather than trying to win sprint finishes, it stands to reason that times would get faster overall.

And there are plenty of other theories out there—broader support for professional training groups, better nutrition and recovery, the inevitable march of progress, and some that I’ve undoubtedly missed completely. As I said at the top, I don’t know the answers, and I don’t think anyone else does either. Times do seem to be improving, but not as much as I would have guessed based on all the hype about recent record-breaking. The shoes almost certainly play some role—but if there’s some other secret sauce in there, it’ll be fun trying to figure out what it is.

(07/01/2023) Views: 1,286 ⚡AMP
by Outside Online
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Eliud Kipchoge says he is determined to keep on writing history — and secure a third Olympic marathon crown next year

Eliud Kipchoge is widely regarded as the greatest marathon runner of all time has set himself many challenges in his dazzling career, and remains insatiable despite his two Olympic titles, his world record of 2:01:09 in Berlin in 2022 and an incredible 15 wins in 18 marathons he has entered.

He broke the mythical two-hour barrier over the 26.2 mile (42.195 kilometre) distance in Vienna in 2019, with a time of 1:59:40, but the feat was not recognised as an official world record as it was not in open competition.

Victory has eluded the 38-year-old in the Boston and New York marathons, which if he won would make him the first man to have all six major titles under his belt.

"The priority now is to focus on the Olympics and win a third time. The other (challenges) will come later," Kipchoge says in an interview with AFP at the renowned Kaptagat training camp in Kenya's Rift Valley.

His two Olympic marathon gold medals in 2016 and 2021 put him at level pegging with Ethiopia's Abebe Bikila (1960, 1964) and Waldemar Cierpinski of East Germany (1976, 1980).

A third gold at the Paris Olympics in 2024 would make Kipchoge the undisputed marathon giant at the Games, and bring him a victory steeped in symbolism.

The French capital was the city where he won his first international crown in 2003 at the age of 18, clinching the 5,000 metres world championship title ahead of sporting legends Hicham El Guerrouj of Morocco and Ethiopia's Kenenisa Bekele.

However, Kipchoge does not rule out giving up on his other goals.

"If time comes in to hang the racing shoes, I will say bye to other big things in sport."

'I know myself'

Sitting on a shaded bench in the Kaptagat camp where he has lived and trained for several months a year for 20 years, Kipchoge looks back on his poor showing in Boston on April 17, where he dropped from the lead group in the 30th kilometre and ended up finishing sixth.

This rare failure dampened his spirits.

"I'm trying to forget what has happened in Boston. It's caught in my mind... but I believe that what has passed has passed."

With his lifelong coach Patrick Sang, he has analysed the reasons for his disappointing performance, saying "it's mostly the hamstring".

He brushes aside concerns about his difficulties on hilly courses such as Boston and New York and which will also confront him in Paris.

"It is not really a concern, but I respect everybody's thoughts," he says. "I think it was a bad day and every day is a different day. I'm looking forward for next year.

"Everybody can write anything, you have no control. But I know myself."

'Want to be an inspiration'

Kipchoge is now preparing for his final marathon of the year.

"I'm doing well. My training is going on in a good way," he says.

But he has not yet disclosed which event it will be — Berlin on September 24, Chicago on October 8 or New York on November 5.

"At the end of July, I will know where to go."

He is following his usual training programme, eating up more than 200 kilometres a week on the red dirt tracks of Kaptagat forest, 2,400 metres above sea level.

Among his 20-odd training partners at the camp at the time of the AFP interview were Kenya's new 1,500m and 5,000m world record holder Faith Kipyegon and two-time New York marathon winner Geoffrey Kamworor.

As the respected dean of Kenyan athletics, Kipchoge is happy to see the emergence of 23-year-old compatriot Kelvin Kiptum, who won the London Marathon in April in 2:01:25, the second fastest time in history and just 16 seconds away from his own world record.

"I want to be an inspiration and I trust my breaking the world record twice is an inspiration to many young people. I trust they will want more and even beat my records."

'Prioritise drugs tests'

But in a country where athletics has become tainted by large-scale drug use, Kipchoge laments that "many people are going into shortcuts to advance".

"I think doping is there... It's all more about getting rich."

Kipchoge says the authorities should prioritise testing for performance-enhancing substances, saying it was much more important than education "because everybody who is doing doping knows what is going on".

"Just pump everything in testing, put testing as a first priority and all will be well," he says.

"The moment we prioritise testing and we register those who are handling the athletes across the country, we have the right data to know who is who in the whole country.

"But if we really ignore the people who are working with athletes and athletes themselves, then we are in danger."

(06/27/2023) Views: 884 ⚡AMP
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Two world records and a house for Kenya's Kipyegon

Kenya’s Faith Kipyegon, who recently set world records in the 1500m and 5000m, has received a house and 5 million KES ($35,000) following her historic feats in Florence and Paris this month.

Kipyegon met with Kenyan President William Ruto on her return to her home country, with Ruto pledging a similar monetary reward for Kenya’s future world record-breakers.

The awarding of a house to Kipyegon follows the announcement on 30 May of a new scheme in Kenya that is designed to help athletes to own property and invest their earnings. It is particularly important for female athletes, who will now be able to buy a house under their sole name.

Kipyegon – the first recipient of the scheme – ran 3:49.11 to break the world 1500m record in Florence on 2 June and a week later the 29-year-old clocked 14:05.20 in Paris to add the world 5000m record to her ever-expanding CV.

She met with Ruto at State House in Nairobi and was joined at the ceremony by her husband Timothy Kitum, the 2012 Olympic 800m bronze medallist, and their daughter Alyn.

The new scheme is the result of a partnership between Athletics Kenya and Kenyan banking institution Housing Finance Group that offers athletes affordable home ownership, financing at incentivised Kenya Mortgage Refinancing rates and links to strategic affordable housing developers.

“It is a no-brainer that having a decent shelter is one of the basic needs for human survival. Yet, for all its importance, decent housing is one of the biggest challenges that millions of Kenyans face in this country,” said Athletics Kenya President Jackson Tuwei during the launch of the partnership in Nairobi, where Hon. Ababu Namwamba, the Cabinet Secretary for Youth Affairs, Sports and the Arts, was chief guest.

“Among those affected are Kenyan sportsmen and women who struggle with balancing putting a decent roof over their heads and pursuing their ambitions on the track and field.”

Beatrice Chebet, Beatrice Chepkoech, Dan Kiviasi, Mary Moraa, Wiseman Were, Wilfred Bungei, Milcah Chemos, Catherine Ndereba, John Ngugi and William Tanui were among the current and former athletes who were present at the launch ceremony.

(06/20/2023) Views: 846 ⚡AMP
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Is Wavelight technology good for the sport?

Last week at the Paris Diamond League, we witnessed one of the most extraordinary single-day spectacles in the history of the sport. Over the course of two hours, two world records and a world best were shattered; the races were nothing short of spectacular, particularly when Faith Kipyegon skilfully closed the gap on the Wavelight during the final two laps, leaving Ethiopia’s Letesenbet Gidey in the dust and achieving the seemingly impossible: a new women’s 5,000m world record.

The question of whether Wavelights are beneficial for the sport remains subjective, with opinions among track fans varying. On one hand, they enhance the performance and make races more engaging for spectators at the track or watching from home. On the other hand, they provide a precise pacing strategy for elite athletes, potentially facilitating faster times and diminishing the traditional element of intense competition.What is Wavelight technology?

Wavelight technology, named for the Mexican Wave, was introduced by World Athletics in 2019. It serves as a tool for athletes and spectators, offering assistance with pacing and providing a visual representation of the race’s progression. A wave of lights appears along the inside edge of the track, moving at the desired pace for the race. Typically used in distance events like the 800m, 1,500m, or 5,000m, these lights are programmed to signify specific benchmarks, such as world championship standards, meeting records or world record times.Pros

People are drawn to track and field events to witness athletes breaking records, and Wavelight can serve as a valuable tool for athletes to gauge their paces and attempt to break records. A notable example: at the Paris Diamond League on June 9, where Jakob Ingebrigtsen of Norway and Lamecha Girma of Ethiopia ran ahead of the lights to set new records in their respective races. In Girma’s case, the lights pushed and challenged him throughout the 3,000m steeplechase, with Girma narrowly staying ahead in the final 100m to break the previous world record by one second.

Girma’s reliance on the lights became evident as his pace dropped off after 1,000m, and he had to dig deep to maintain the pace set by the flashing lights. Without them, it is unlikely he would have achieved the record.Track and field has faced challenges since the departure of Usain Bolt in 2017, with the sport seeking its next superstar. The success of major events like the World Championships and the Olympic Games significantly increases the sport’s popularity.

World Athletics recognizes the importance of world or national records in the Diamond League circuit, which contribute to increased viewership. The implementation of Wavelight technology allows athletes to run faster and challenge these record times, catering to the audience’s desire for exciting and fast-paced performances.While not every race will produce record-breaking times, Wavelight enhances the potential for thrilling performances that captivate viewers and generate greater interest in the sport.

Cons

When Ingebrigtsen shattered Daniel Komen’s two-mile record, which had stood for 26 years, my immediate thought was how fast Komen could have run with today’s technology. Komen had pacers guide him through the first 2,000m before running the final kilometre alone against the clock. Similarly, Ingebrigtsen had pacers until around the 2,000m mark, but they gradually dropped off, leaving him with a lead of 10-15 metres over the lights.

Depending on the race style or purpose, I believe Wavelight can have a positive impact on the sport. But they also detract from what track and field is fundamentally about—the world’s best athletes competing against one another. Watching a Diamond League event where one athlete outpaces the rest of the field by 15 to 20 seconds in the 3,000m steeplechase does not benefit the sport. While celebrating superstars is important, track and field legends like Komen, Kenenisa Bekele, Genzebe Dibaba and David Rudisha never had events specifically set up for them to chase world records.

They achieved their records in the heat of competition, racing against other competitors. This is where I believe Wavelight technology crosses a line.A compelling comparison was published in Track & Field News in 2020, analyzing the current and former 10,000m world records—Joshua Cheptegei’s record with pace lights versus Bekele’s record without them. The analysis revealed that Cheptegei maintained much more even splits than Bekele, with a variance of less than a second (0.8s) between his kilometres, which is truly remarkable. In contrast, Bekele’s variance was five times greater, with a difference of nearly five seconds between his fastest and slowest kilometres.I am not suggesting that Wavelights are ruining the sport of track and field, but I believe their use should be limited to specific situations, such as aiming for world standards or being present only during the final lap or two of distances ranging from 1,500m to 10,000m.

By implementing such limits, World Athletics can strike a balance between using technology for pacing assistance and preserving the essence of competitive racing.

(06/17/2023) Views: 958 ⚡AMP
by Running Magazine
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Jakob Ingebrigtsen to chase his national record at Oslo Diamond League

At the Paris Diamond League last week, the incredible Norwegian athlete and Olympic 1,500m champion  Jakob Ingebrigtsen achieved a remarkable two-mile world best. On Thursday evening (afternoon for viewers in North America), the 22-year-old superstar will be competing in his home country, aiming to challenge his national record of 3:28.32 at the Oslo Diamond League.

Jakob’s WR bid

Ingebrigtsen headlines a deep men’s 1,500m field, featuring the silver and bronze medallists from Tokyo 2020, Kenya’s Timothy Cheruiyot and Josh Kerr of Great Britain. Other notable athletes are American Yared Nuguse and Mohamed Katir, who came off a Spanish national record performance over 5,000m in Florence two weeks ago, taking the win in 12:50.79. 

During the pre-race press conference, Ingebrigtsen put his confidence on display and said he’s eager to chase a personal best and even take a shot at Hicham El Guerrouj’s 1,500m world record of 3:26.00 “If I break the world record Thursday, I deserve a statue,” said Ingebrigtsen. The Bislett Games meet director responded: “If you do it, I’ll personally set up a statue outside Bislett [Stadium].”

Although there has been a lot of world record talk from Ingebrigtsen and the media, the Wavelight pace in the 1,500m will be set to the meeting record of 3:29.12, going through 800m in 1:52 and the first kilometre in 2:19. Ingebrigtsen will have to close the final 500m in 66 seconds and a sub-53-second final lap if he hopes to take down the world record. 

Canadians in Oslo

Two prominent Canadian athletes are competing at Oslo Diamond League Thursday. Olympic 200m champion Andre De Grasse looks to get his season back on track in the men’s 200m. The last year hasn’t been easy for De Grasse, changing coaches, battling injury and a slow start to the 2023 season. In his first three 200m race of the season, he has struggled to dip under the world championship standard mark of 20.24 seconds, a time he has frequently sailed under over the last two seasons. In his first Diamond League race in Doha on May 5, his turnover in the final 70 metres wasn’t there, and he faded to sixth in 20.35. It’s been three weeks since his last race, and he will come into Oslo as one of the favourites on paper, having the second-fastest personal best in the field after the young American, Erriyon Knighton.

Canadian mile and 1,500m record holder Gabriela DeBues-Stafford had a successful outing in her Diamond League return in Florence two weeks ago. After a full year off due to injury, the 27-year-old Olympic finalist ran to a season’s best 4:03.64 over 1,500m. She will come into the Oslo Diamond League as the top-ranked woman in the mile event. This race in Oslo should be more tactical and better suited for DeBues-Stafford’s racing style than the 1,500m in Florence, which resulted in a new world record for Faith Kipyegon. 

Two other athletes who will be a tough test for DeBues-Stafford are Jessica Hull, who recently set an Australian record of 3:57.29 in Florence, and Ethiopian rising star Birke Haylom, who ran a giant personal best of 3:57.66 for third place at the Rabat Diamond League. DeBues-Stafford’s mile best is 4:17.87 from Monaco Diamond League in 2019, but any result under 4:23 for her would be a step in the right direction as she continues to prepare for the 2023 World Athletics Championships later this summer. 

(06/15/2023) Views: 859 ⚡AMP
by Marley Dickinson
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Kipyegon, Girma and Ingebrigtsen make history in Paris

It will go down in history as one of the greatest nights in athletics.

Between them, Faith Kipyegon, Lamecha Girma and Jakob Ingebrigtsen broke two world records* and one world best at the Meeting de Paris on Friday (9), providing the standout moments at a highly memorable Wanda Diamond League meeting in the French capital.

A week after breaking the 1500m world record in Florence, Kipyegon etched her name into the record books for 5000m, winning in 14:05.20.

Ahead of the race, the world and Olympic champion hadn’t made too much noise about a possible world record attempt in tonight’s 5000m. It was, after all, just her third ever race at the distance, and her first 5000m outing in eight years.

But, as is always the case with Kipyegon, the 29-year-old Kenyan showed no fear as she navigated her way through the race, the early pace – 2:52.31 at 1000m and 5:42.04 at 2000m – seemingly no bother for the two-time world U20 cross-country champion.

Steeplechase world record-holder Beatrice Chepkoech was the third and final pacemaker, leading the field through 3000m in 8:31.91. At this point, world record-holder Letesenbet Gidey led from Kipyegon with Ethiopia’s Ejgayehu Taye, the world 5km record-holder, a few strides behind.

Kipyegon took the lead with about 600 metres to go, but Gidey kept close contact. They were about six seconds outside of world record pace, but Gidey also knew what Kipyegon is capable of. The world 10,000m champion knew that Kipyegon had the finishing speed to break Gidey’s world record.

Kipyegon – now speeding up with each and every stride – hit the bell in 13:04.1, needing a final lap of about 62 seconds to break Gidey’s record. She did exactly that, covering the last 400m in 61.1 seconds to cross the line in 14:05.20 – a 1.42-second improvement on Gidey’s mark.

Gidey, competing for the first time since her unfortunate episode at the World Cross Country Championships in Bathurst, finished second in 14:07.94, the third-fastest time in history. Taye was third in 14:13.31, while the next three women – Lilian Kasait Rengerek, Freweyni Hailu and Margaret Chelimo Kipkemboi – all finished inside 14:24.

“I didn’t think about the world record, I don’t know how I made it,” said a delighted and surprised Kipyegon. “I just focused on the green light and tried to stay relaxed and enjoy the race. When I saw that it was a world record, I was so surprised – I just wanted to improve on my PB, the world record was not my plan. I just ran after Gidey – she is an amazing lady.

“I do not know what will be next – I’ll have to discuss it with my coach and my management,” she added. “If my body is healthy, anything is possible.”

Girma had requested an ambitious pace for the men’s 3000m steeplechase – one that would result in a finishing time of about 7:52. The world and Olympic silver medallist almost got a bit carried away mid-race, though, and ran well ahead of the wavelights through the middle section of the race.

With two laps to go, the lights almost caught up with the Ethiopian – who by now was well ahead of the rest of the field. But the sound of the bell and the reaction of the crowd seemingly gave him added impetus on the final lap as he moved clear of the lights once more.

He sped around the final lap in about 64 seconds, crossing the line in 7:52.11, taking 1.52 seconds off the world record set 19 years ago by Said Saeed Shaheen.

“I feel so happy,” said Girma, who started his year world a world indoor record over 3000m. “I’m happy and very proud. I felt so fast during the race, so confident. The world record is not a surprise; it was my plan to beat it tonight in Paris. It’s the result of my full determination.”

Two miles not be an official world record distance, but that mattered not to Jakob Ingebrigtsen – or indeed the sell-out crowd at the Stade Charlety – as the Norwegian won the event in a world best of 7:54.10.

The race wasn’t a scoring discipline on this occasion, and as such was held outside of the main broadcast window. But that didn’t deter the world and Olympic champion, who stuck to the pacemakers throughout, passing through 1000m in 2:29.07 and then moving closer to the second pacemaker – and, significantly, ahead of the green wavelights.

Once the pacemakers had done their job, Ingebrigtsen maintained his tempo and breezed through 3000m in an official split of 7:24.00 – a European record and the third-fastest performance of all time for that distance. At this point he had a 13.5-second lead over Ethiopia’s Kuma Girma. Victory was Ingebrigtsen’s; his next target was Daniel Komen’s world best.

He charged through the final 218 metres, roared on by the crowd, and crossed the finish line in 7:54.10, winning by 15 seconds.

“Being able to break this mark feels amazing,” he said. “It is my first world best outdoors. The pace felt very smooth for me, coming out of the 1500m. The public was amazing; without their help, it would have been more difficult. I was a bit surprised by the time in the end.”

World leads for Hodgkinson, Wanyonyi and Holloway

World and Olympic silver medallist Keely Hodgkinson opened her outdoor season in stunning fashion in the women’s 800m, winning by more than two seconds in a world-leading national record of 1:55.77.

The European champion stuck to the pacemaker and covered the first lap in 57.7 seconds, already a stride or two ahead of the rest of the field. With 200 metres to go, there was clear daylight between Hodgkinson and Jamaica’s Natoya Goule, who was being pursued by world indoor champion Ajee Wilson.

But none of them could get near Hodgkinson, who eased down the home straight to cross the line in 1:55.77, taking 0.11 off the British record she set two years ago in Tokyo. Wilson finished second in 1:58.16 and Goule was third in 1:58.23.

(06/09/2023) Views: 697 ⚡AMP
by World Athletics
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Sifan Hassan dazzles on the track in her season opener

Six weeks after winning the London Marathon, Sifan Hassan returned to action on the track in dazzling fashion at the FBK Games in Hengelo, Netherlands. On Saturday, Hassan won the women’s 10,000m, clocking the seventh-fastest time in history and a world lead of 29:37.80. She followed up her 10,000m win with a 3:58.12 in the women’s 1,500m, dropping the field over the final lap to win with ease.

In a post-race interview, Hassan told reporters that she entered the two races to see where she was at, two months out from the 2023 World Athletics Championships in Budapest. Hassan confirmed after her historic win in London that she is now shifting her focus to the track for the world championships, but said she plans to race another marathon in the U.S. (Chicago or New York), possibly as soon as this fall. 

“I had the marathon just six weeks ago, and for me, the change was very hard,” said Hassan. “I am happy with my performance.” Her times for both distances are inside of the 2023 World Championships qualifying standards.

This isn’t the first time Hassan has demonstrated her extraordinary range over a short period. At the 2020 Tokyo Olympics, Hassan attempted the distance trifecta, winning gold in the 5,000m and the 10,000m but falling short in the 1,500m, taking bronze behind Faith Kipyegon and Laura Muir.

(06/06/2023) Views: 652 ⚡AMP
by Marley Dickinson
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Faith Kipyegon smashes women’s 1500m world record in Florence

Kenyan Faith Kipyegon smashed the women’s 1500m world record, clocking 3 minutes, 49.11 seconds at a Diamond League meet in Florence, Italy, on Friday.

Kipyegon, a two-time Olympic champion and two-time world champion, took 96 hundredths of a second off Ethiopian Genzebe Dibaba‘s world record from 2015. Kipyegon began the day as the second-fastest woman in history at 3:50.37.

The 29-year-old was already the most decorated female miler in history, the only one with four global 1500m titles. Her Olympic gold medals in 2016 and 2021 were separated by a 22-month maternity leave from competition (that included 12 months without running).

Kipyegon was the eighth of nine children growing on a farm in the Kenyan Rift Valley. She was a soccer player at age 14 when she lined up for a one-kilometer run in PE class, according to World Athletics.

“I won that race by 20 meters,” Kipyegon said, according to World Athletics in 2016. “It is only then I knew I could run fast and be a good athlete.”

In 2010, a barefooted Kipyegon placed fourth in the world cross country championships junior race as, at age 16, the youngest finisher in the top 21. The next year, she won it. The year after that, she made her Olympic debut at age 18. By 2015, Jenny Simpson, arguably the best American miler in history, had a nickname for her: “The Sniper,” for her ability to run people down in the final lap.

She ran her last lap on Friday in under 59 seconds.

Next year, Kipyegon can become the second person to win the same individual Olympic track race three times, joining Usain Bolt. She said last year that she may shift to the 5000m after the 2024 Paris Games, according to Olympics.com.

Also in Florence, world champion Fred Kerley extended a year-plus win streak in the men’s 100m, prevailing in 9.94 seconds over Kenyan Ferdinand Omanyala (10.04) and American Trayvon Bromell (10.09).

(06/02/2023) Views: 579 ⚡AMP
by Olympic Talk
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