Running News Daily

Running News Daily is edited by Bob Anderson and team.  Send your news items to bob@mybestruns.com  Advertising opportunities available.   Email for rates.  

Index to Daily Posts · Sign Up For Updates · Run The World Feed

Articles tagged #Haile Gebrselassie
Today's Running News

Share

Are records going to be broken at the Berlin Marathon this weekend?

The fall marathon season kicks off this Sunday, Sept. 25, in Germany for the 48th annual Berlin Marathon, which is the first of four Abbott World Marathon Majors over the next six weeks. The biggest name is distance running Eliud Kipchoge returns to the course he set the world record on four years ago, but the question everyone is asking is whether he can run 2:01:39 again?

He also looks to become the second man to win four Berlin Marathon titles, joining the great Haile Gebrselassie, who won four consecutive between 2006 and 2009.

Kipchoge isn’t the only athlete chasing a record in Berlin. U.S. marathon record holder Keira D’Amato has made a quick turnaround from her eighth place finish at World Championships and has her eyes on the American record of 2:19:12, which she ran in Houston earlier this year.

Vancouver’s Natasha Wodak is the lone Canadian in the elite field, and she is looking to take advantage of the fast Berlin course. In 2020, Wodak ran the second fastest marathon time by a Canadian woman, 2:26:19, at The Marathon Project in Arizona. She followed up that performance with an impressive 13th place finish in the marathon at the 2020 Olympics Games.

Wodak hopes to shake 90 seconds off her marathon PB Sunday to challenge Malindi Elmore’s Canadian record of 2:24:50 from 2019.

The weather

The race starts at 9:15 a.m. local time on Sunday (which is 3:15 a.m. E.T. in Canada). The temperature looks to be perfect for marathoning — between 10 C and 14 C, with next to no wind. 

Men who hope to finish near Kipchoge

It is well-known that Kipchoge is the favorite, but who are the guys most likely to finish second or stick with him until 30K?

Ethiopia’s Guye Adola, who was second to Kipchoge in 2017, won Berlin last fall in 2:05:45. The win marked his first major victory after struggling with injury earlier in his career. Like Kipchoge, Adola is fast and knows what it takes to win on this course. In 2017, he ran the fastest marathon debut in history on this course but since has not run near 2:03. 

Adola is the only other sub-2:05 runner, which Kipchoge is bound to finish under. If anyone else wins this race, it would take a miracle, or mean both Kipchoge and Adola have blown up.

Ghirmay Ghebreslassie of Eritrea won the 2015 World Championships in Beijing and the New York Marathon in 2016 after missing the podium at the Rio Olympics. Although Ghebreslassie has the experience, in a sub-2:05 race, he may not have the speed to keep up with Adola and Kipchoge. 

Marley’s Pick: Eliud Kipchoge (KEN) – 2:02:29

Can Keira D’Amato become the first American winner?

D’Amato has the fastest time out of the 24 runners in the women’s elite field with a time of 2:19:12, but she has only had nine weeks to prepare for Berlin after her 2:23:34 at the World Championships in Eugene. She was only selected for the U.S. team after Molly Seidel dropped out a few weeks before the championships.

To run 2:23 at worlds off not much training is impressive and should be a confidence booster for D’Amato on a faster Berlin course. 

Many of the top Kenyan and Ethiopian runners will be competing later this fall, but there are other sub-2:22 runners in Berlin. Kenya’s Nancy Jelagat Meto (2:19:31 – Valencia) and Vibian Chepkirui, the winner of the Vienna City Marathon in 2:20:59 in April, have the experience and speed to deny D’Amato the title.

Rosemary Wanjiru of Kenya, a 65:34 half marathoner, is making her marathon debut here in Berlin. Although this is her first marathon, she will likely be in contention most of the race.

Marley’s Pick: Rosemary Wanjiru (KEN) – 2:18:39.

(09/23/2022) Views: 99 ⚡AMP
by Marley Dickinson
Share
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...

more...
Share

Eliud Kipchoge ready for fast times in Berlin

Eliud Kipchoge is ready for a very fast race in the BMW BERLIN-MARATHON on Sunday which may well lead him to break the world record here for the second time.

The double Olympic champion, who set the current world record of 2:01:39 in Berlin four years ago and also broke the two-hour barrier when he ran 1:59:40.2 in a race in Vienna in 2019 which did not conform to regulations, will start as the clear favourite. 

Organisers of the BMW BERLIN-MARATHON have registered 45,527 runners from 157 nations for the 48th edition of the event. Germany’s most spectacular road race is part of the Abbott World Marathon Majors (AWMM) and is also a Platinum Label Road Race of the international athletics federation, World Athletics. 

The 37-year-old Kenyan held back from making any hard and fast promises when he spoke two days before the BMW BERLIN-MARATHON. “I’d like to thank the organisers for letting me race again in Berlin after four years and expect a very good race. I’ve trained well as usual – every training day is a challenge.”In response to the question at the press conference, what would be “a very good race” for him, Eliud Kipchoge answered: “A very good race is a good race.”

That got the audience on his side before he added: “I want to inspire people and if a course record comes out of this at the end, I will appreciate it,” added this outstanding athlete. It should be noted that the course record is, of course, the world record, but Eliud Kipchoge was careful not to utter these words.

The world record holder, whose career so far has brought him victory in all but two of his 18 marathons, could well achieve his fourth win in Berlin after taking the title in 2015, 2017 and 2018. That would bring him equal with the Ethiopian legend Haile Gebrselassie as the two men with most wins in Berlin. If the world athlete of the year for 2018 and 2019 is in world record form, Eliud Kipchoge should prove unbeatable on Sunday.

On the other hand, the elite field has plenty of strength in depth. Heading the list of challengers is last year’s champion Guye Adola from Ethiopia, winning the title in unseasonably warm conditions in 2:05:45 and beating the Ethiopian superstar Kenenisa Bekele into the bargain.

It was in Berlin in 2017 that Guye Adola ran what remains his personal best of 2:03:46 and on his debut at the distance. Only Eliud Kipchoge finished ahead of him though from time to time Adola took the lead. “I have prepared well and look forward to the race,” said the 31-year-old, who described Kipchoge as “a hero.”

The BMW BERLIN-MARATHON has greater strength in depth among the men’s elite field than ever before. As many as 18 runners have personal bests under 2:08. Among them is Ghirmay Ghebreslassie who caused a surprise when winning the world title in 2015 and also won in New York the following year. The Eritrean athlete has a best of 2:05:34 which he set in finishing third in Seville in February.

“It’s a big challenge to run in such a field and against Eliud Kipchoge. I’ll do my best and my aim is a place on the podium,” said Ghirmay Ghebreslassie.

An unusually large number of Japanese runners will be among the elite starters, the reason being that they are trying to qualify for the 2024 Olympics. There will be 13 of them with personal bests of under 2:10 in the BMW BERLIN-MARATHON. The fastest of them is Ryu Takaku with a best of 2:06:45.

The leading German in the field is Johannes Motschmann, who was a member of the German team at the European Championships which won the silver medal in Munich. Despite a short recovery time of six weeks since that competition, the 28-year-old wants to improve his personal best of 2:12:18 in the direction of 2:10. 

The race in Berlin is the biggest of my career so far. Since I’m a hometown boy here, I’d even rate it above the European Championship marathon,” said Motschmann, who runs for the Marathon Team Berlin.

The Austrian record holder, Peter Herzog, will also be aiming to take advantage of conditions at the BMW BERLIN-MARATHON and run faster than ever before. His current best is 2:10:06 and his ambition is to become the first Austrian.

While a double world athlete of the Year in Eliud Kipchoge will take centre stage, a former star of world sport will be running some way behind him: the Brazilian football legend Kaká, a member of the team which won the World Cup in 2002, and also a Champions League winner and Footballer of the Year.

“I definitely wanted to run a major marathon and asked friends who recommended Berlin to me. That’s why I’m here. On Sunday I want to run 3:40. The marathon is something very special in that we, as mass runners, run together with the elite. I’m very excited,” admitted Kaká at the press conference.

Elite runners with personal bests

Eliud Kipchoge KEN 2:01:39

Guye Adola ETH 2:03:46

Ghirmay Ghebreslassie ERI 2:05:34

Dejene Debela ETH 2:05:46

Mark Korir KEN 2:05:49

Ashenafi Moges ETH 2:06:12

Tadu Abate ETH 2:06:13

Bethwel Yegon KEN 2:06:14

Awet HabteERI2:06:25

Ryu TakakuJPN2:06:45

Limenih Getachew ETH2:06:47

Hiroto InoueJPN2:06:47

Zablon Chumba KEN 2:07:18

Kenya Sonota JPN 2:07:23

Kento Kikutani JPN 2:07:26

Kazuki Muramoto JPN 2:07:36

Tadashi Isshiki JPN2:07:39

Atsumi Ashiwa JPN 2:07:54

Daisuke DoiJPN2:08:13

Rintaro TakedaJPN2:08:48

Yuki Matsumura JPN 2:09:01

Peter Herzog AUT 2:10:06

Johannes Motschmann GER 2:12:18

Third photo: Kipchoge's first run in Berlin 

(09/23/2022) Views: 79 ⚡AMP
Share
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...

more...
Share

Haile Gebrselassie to be the International Event Ambassador at the Vedanta Delhi Half Marathon 2022

Haile Gebrselassie, one of the greatest distance runners in history, will be the International Event Ambassador at the Vedanta Delhi Half Marathon 2022 on Sunday October 16.

The Ethiopian legend won the 10,000m gold medal at both the 1996 and 2000 Olympic Games as well as four successive World Athletics Championships 10,000m titles from 1993-99.

In addition, Gebrselassie won a further four world indoor gold medals and the 2001 World Athletics Half Marathon Championships title, and set no less than 15 world records outdoors and on the roads, and a further five world indoor records, revising the record books over a stunning range of distances from 1500m to the marathon.

“There are few things more inspiring and joyful than seeing a city run together. When we run together, we stay together, we win together,” said Gebrselassie, whose activities in Delhi will include motivating and inspiring the thousands of runners who will take to the streets of the Indian capital next month, as well as promoting the event in the final days before the gun goes.

"Running and the community are the two things that are most important to me, and an event like the Vedanta Delhi Half Marathon brings them together in a special way.

“The enthusiasm of the host city inspires something special in everyone involved in making this beautiful event possible. I’m going to be cheering all the runners as we celebrate the different hues of Delhi,” he added.

Uganda’s Jacob Kiplimo, the reigning world half marathon champion and world record holder over the distance, will headline the elite field for the 17th edition of the Vedanta Delhi Half Marathon 2022.

The Vedanta Delhi Half Marathon 2022 is a World Athletics Elite Label Race and one of the world's most prestigious half marathons.

(09/22/2022) Views: 100 ⚡AMP
by Runners Web
Share
Vedanta Delhi Half Marathon

Vedanta Delhi Half Marathon

The Airtel Delhi Half Marathon is a haven for runners, creating an experience, that our citizens had never envisaged. The streets of Delhi converted to a world-class running track. Clean, sanitized road for 21.09 kms, exhaustive medical support system on the route, timing chip for runners, qualified personnel to ensure smooth conduct of the event across departments. The race route...

more...
Share

Ethiopians Yehualaw and Yimer look for fast times at Antrim Coast Half

British distance runners Marc Scott and Callum Hawkins are also set to race 13.1 miles while Haile Gebrselassie and Jo Pavey will run the one mile fun run this weekend.

Ethiopian distance running stars Ethiopians Yalemzerf Yehualaw and Jemal Yimer lead a world-class line-up at the ‘Mid & East Antrim’ Antrim Coast Half Marathon in Larne, Northern Ireland, on Sunday (Aug 28). There is plenty of British interest too with Marc Scott and Callum Hawkins among the entries.

The event, which is set to be covered live on BBC online from 8.55am, sees Yehualaw coming into this year’s race having broken the women’s world record over 10km with 29:14 in Castellon, Spain, earlier this year, in addition to running the fastest female debut marathon ever of 2:17:23 in Hamburg in April.

At the Antrim Coast event last year she appeared to break the world record for 13.1 miles with 63:43 but was denied the mark due to the course being found to be 54 metres short.

Yehualaw will be joined at this year’s Antrim Coast event by her training partner Tsehay Gemechu. The 23-year-old Ethiopian comes to this year’s with a personal best of 65:08 and has been winner of the Lisbon Half-Marathon two years in a row and Copenhagen Half-Marathon in 2021.

In addition for this World Athletics Elite Label road race there is Gete Alemayehu, who recorded 66:37 for second in Barcelona Half-Marathon in April. Beatrice Chepkemoi of Kenya, who has a PB of 67:29, will make it four women who have run under 67:30.

Three male pacemakers have been lined up and there is Northern Ireland interest courtesy of Emma Mitchell, Fionnuala Ross and Hannah Irwin.

The men’s field is led by Ethiopian record-holder and last year’s winner, Yimer. He is the quickest in the race with a PB of 58:33 but faces fellow Ethiopian Tesfahun Akalnew, who was was runner-up in Larne 12 months ago and has subsequently recorded a 2:06:55 marathon in Amsterdam.

Bethwel Birgen of Kenya is set to set the pace with Scott in particular hoping to be dragged under the 60 minute barrier. The Brit was not at his best in this summer’s track championships but has great pedigree on the roads after having won the Great North Run last year.

Could he get close to Mo Farah’s British record of 59:32 set in Lisbon seven years ago?

Also in the line-up are Shadrack Kimining of Kenya, Huseydin Mahamed of Ethiopia and Gizealew Ayana of Kenya, all of whom have broken the 60-minute barrier in the past.

Northern Ireland’s Stephen Scullion is also due to run plus Omar Ahmed of Birchfield Harriers.

The event has also secured a major coup with the signing of Haile Gebrselassie. The 49-year-old, who won multiple global titles during his career, will run the inaugural Antrim Coast Classic Street Mile for fun with Jo Pavey, young athletes and parents on Saturday evening (Aug 27) before joining race director James McIlroy to commentate on a half-marathon the next day.

(08/26/2022) Views: 137 ⚡AMP
by Jason Henderson
Share
MEA ANTRIM COAST HALF MARATHON

MEA ANTRIM COAST HALF MARATHON

The MEA Antrim Coast Half Marathon 2022 has been approved by World Athletics as an Elite Event. The World Athletics certified course takes in some of the most stunning scenery in Europe, combined with some famous landmarks along the route. With it's flat and fast course, the race is one of the fastest half marathons in the world. Starting...

more...
Share

Gelete Burka will be running the 2022 TCS Toronto Waterfront Marathon on October 16th

A three-time Olympian for her country, Gelete was also the 2008 World Indoor 1,500m champion and 2006 World Cross Country champion. But when she won the 2017 Ethiopian World Championships 10,000m trials and was not selected for London, she turned to the marathon. Her results in the classic distance have been sublime.

Her curriculum vitae includes a personal best time of 2:20:45 (2018 Dubai Marathon) and a splendid 3rd place finish in the 2019 Chicago marathon (2:20:55). Dipping under 2 hours 20 minutes remains a tangible objective.

This will be only the second time the 36-year-old star has raced in Canada. On her previous occasion in 2018 she set a Canadian All Comers’ marathon record of 2:22:17 in Ottawa, despite running with stomach cramps and completely alone for much of the race.

That record was beaten by one second at the Toronto Waterfront Marathon by Kenya’s Magdalyne Masai in 2019. The pair will battle in Toronto.

“My training is going well and I am so happy with my training,” Burka says from her home in Addis Ababa, the Ethiopian capital. The WhatsApp call had been delayed by a couple of hours when the lights went off during a power outage.

“We have two months until the race and I’m just working hard,” she adds. “It is sometimes raining here. We look at the weather and choose training places. We are working hard in Sendafa, Entoto, Sululta, Arafat. We train in five or six different places.”

Coached by Getamesay Molla, the group of elite runners she belongs to meet in those various locations all within half an hour of Addis by car. In a radical departure, Gelete even spent most of the month of July in Colorado Springs, Colorado where she joined Kenyan born US coach Haron Lagat. It is the rainy season in Ethiopia and heavy rains adversely affected the dirt roads back home.

“It’s nice for training there,” she says of the Colorado Rocky Mountains. “I was with some friends in the US Army Athletics (group). Do you know Haron Lagat? I was with him working there in Colorado Springs before the marathon training.”

Gelete had expected to race Ottawa earlier in May but although her Canadian visa was approved, she did not receive her passport in time to travel to Canada. After training for six months specifically for the race, the disappointment was enormous. It is not easy to train to peak for a specific marathon and then have to find an alternative. In any case, Ottawa is among the final spring marathons.

“One week I was sick. I was so heartbroken,” she reveals with a smile. “I haven’t any business, my only business is working in athletics. I just focus on my running. A little bit I was angry because I worked so hard. It is not like track racing.

“It was a big disappointment but sometimes you forget something that happened in life. I have forgotten it and now am only focused on Toronto.”

Gelete comes from Kofele in Arsi district of south-central Ethiopia. It’s the same region from where national hero, Haile Gebrselassie, originates.

Family is everything to her and currently her youngest sister together with her niece, Deborah, and nephew, Muse, share her home in Addis. After returning from Colorado, one of the first things she did was travel back to visit her mother and her other siblings in Shashamane, one of the main towns in Arsi. It is also known for its large Rastafarian community.

A devoted Christian, Gelete is also a member of the 40-member choir at the Glorious Life Church in Addis. They sing in Amharic, Oromo and English at two weekly services. In addition, she is an usher at the church and so must attend meetings and choir practices when called. Her faith is important enough that following her 2018 Ottawa victory she sought out an Ethiopian church to attend.

Given the news that Magdalyne Masai shaved a second off her Canadian All Comers record in 2019 - and will face her on the Toronto starting line - Gelete smiles. Asked whether Masai’s 2:22:16 standard will now be a target, she thinks for a moment.

“You have to see in the race how you are feeling and also what she is feeling,” Gelete explains. “In a race you think of records when your body feels ok. For now I am not sure. I will look inside the race for what I can do.”

Ethiopians were overjoyed with the performance of their 2022 World Championships team in Eugene, Oregon. With 10 medals, Ethiopia finished second in the medal table behind the host USA. Seeing her compatriot Gotytom Gebreslase take the women’s marathon gold was extra special.

“It is still in my head that I want to run under 2:20,” she says, “because you see the world championships I am so happy (Gotyom) ran 2:18. After you see in championships they are running 2:18 then I think under 2:20 (is possible) if the body is ok and the weather is ok. And, if the others want to run a very good time.”

Clearly this Ethiopian superstar has bold intentions for her future. Her race against Masai in this World Athletics Elite Label race is a tantalizing prospect.

About the TCS Toronto Waterfront Marathon

One of only two World Athletics Elite Label races in Canada, the TCS Toronto Waterfront Marathon is Canada’s premier running event and the grand finale of the Canada Running Series (CRS). Since 2017, the race has served as the Athletics Canada Canadian Marathon Championship and has doubled as the Olympic trials. During the 2021 event, participants raised over $3.08 million for 151 community charities. Using innovation and organization as guiding principles, Canada Running Series stages great experiences for runners of all levels, from Canadian Olympians to recreational and charity runners. With a mission of “building community through the sport of running,” CRS is committed to making sport part of sustainable communities and the city-building process.

(08/25/2022) Views: 138 ⚡AMP
by Paul Gains
Share
TCS Toronto Waterfront Marathon

TCS Toronto Waterfront Marathon

The Scotiabank Toronto Waterfront Marathon, Half-Marathon & 5k Run / Walk is organized by Canada Running Series Inc., organizers of the Canada Running Series, "A selection of Canada's best runs!" Canada Running Series annually organizes eight events in Montreal, Toronto and Vancouver that vary in distance from the 5k to the marathon. The Scotiabank Toronto Waterfront Marathon and Half-Marathon are...

more...
Share

Tim Murphy founder of San Diego Elite Racing Inc has died at age 77

Tim Murphy, founder of San Diego’s Elite Racing, Inc., the man who reinvented running, not once but three times, succumbed to pneumonia Wednesday night (August 17, 2022) passing in hospice care at his home in San Diego, California. He was 77 years old.

Today, though smaller than it once was, the Rock ‘n’ Roll Marathon Series remains the largest purveyor of running events in the world, with 29 events in 16 U.S. states, Washington D.C., and seven foreign countries. But a quarter century ago, who knew what lay ahead in the wild open spaces of the first Rock `n` Roll Marathon? 

Some observers even questioned the concept of rock bands strung along the marathon course altogether. What does rock`n` roll have to do with San Diego, much less with running a marathon, the ultimate test of endurance?

Well, on June 21, 1998 the world got its answer. With the snarl of a blistering guitar solo, the tight syncopation of a snare drum, and the slap of millions of accompanying footfalls, the second-wave running boom announced its arrival in San Diego with a carnival of music, endorphins, and sweat. It’s like Tim turned over the calendar two years early to introduce the new century.

“We created a theme marathon without intending to,” said Tracy Sundlun, Tim’s long-time partner at Elite Racing. 

NEW DEMOGRAPHICS 

No new major marathon had sprung up in the U.S. or the world since the Los Angeles Marathon arrived in 1986. In its first year, LA registered 10,787 runners, making it the largest inaugural marathon in history. Instantly, that number became Tim‘s goal for San Diego to beat LA.

Even before its first steps were run, though, there was the feel of a major marathon about the Rock ‘n’ Roll Marathon. Tim had conceived the idea years before while running the final lonely miles of the Heart of San Diego Marathon out along Friar’s Road to Qualcomm Stadium in Mission Valley. Wishing there were some kind of support along the road to help out, Murphy thought, wouldn’t it be great to have music to run to.

It took a long time for his idea to gestate, but the seed had been planted. 

After a decade of developing his reputation as an event innovator, beginning in 1986 with the Carlsbad 5000 just north of San Diego – the event that proved runners in a then 10k / marathon focused world would run a 3.1 mile race, while introducing “spectator running” where the professional field followed age and gender specific races over the same tight-looped course – Murphy’s idea of a musical marathon came to life, born out of two separate, but catalyzing events.

“When they opened the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame in Cleveland (1995), there was so much hype about it,” Tim told San Diego YuYu in 2004. “So I was running along one morning and I thought, “If I lived in Cleveland I would do a marathon that would start and finish at the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame and do a big concert afterwards.” 

One year later 273 San Diegans were among the record 38,000 entrants at the 100th anniversary of the Boston Marathon. 

“Afterwards, they had this get together and all they could talk about was why there wasn’t a major marathon in San Diego. And all the runners, some of them pretty important, just wouldn’t leave me alone about it. So I essentially dusted off the old idea I had for Cleveland and started.”

With the backing of a set of investors, led by Hollywood A-list producers Frank Marshall and wife Catherine Kennedy – “Jurassic Park”, “Indiana Jones” , “Jason Bourne” – along with celebrity ambassadors like basketball Hall of Famer Wilt Chamberlain, Tim promoted his concept relentlessly at race expos around the country, touting his new baby with posters and ads that said, ‘You missed the first Boston. Don’t miss the first Rock ‘n’ Roll!’

No longer a simple feat of speed endurance, the grueling marathon had been reinvented as a rollicking 26-mile long block party through America’s Finest City. 

Despite a 37-minute delay at the start due to some perceived traffic issues on the course –  which led to a water-dousing through the first aid station – the high-spirited music rocking the sidelines caused an immediate sensation.

Nearly 20,000 entrants from 30 countries and all 50 states passed the word, ‘You gotta try this one!” And that was before they got to the post-race concert that night featuring Huey Lewis and the News, Pat Benatar, and the Lovin’ Spoonful!

The makeup of year one’s field proved historic, as well. 50% of the field was women, far and away the largest such percentage of any co-ed road race of any distance to date, and a pivot-point in the history of the sport. Before RnR San Diego, the largest percentage of women in a major marathon had been just 23% at New York City. Most road races had only 10% to 15% women at the time.

Rock ‘n’ Roll’s runners were also slightly older than the norm, slightly wealthier, and slightly slower than the average marathon runners.

At a time when road race courses were designed to be minimally visible and impact their communities as little as possible, the initial Rock ‘n’ Roll Marathon layout was designed to be an infomercial for the city, regardless of the potential inconvenience for some.

When city officials asked how long they would have to keep the streets closed, Tim based his projections on the New York City Marathon, saying, ‘we might have 50 or 60 runners who will take longer than six hours 30 minutes. But we’ll just direct them onto the sidewalk, so you can reopen the streets.’ As it turned out, 1500 runners took over seven hours to complete their 26.2 mile journey. 

But Tim Murphy wasn’t just in it for the large participation numbers, important as they were. He always had his eye on top talent, too, and urged elite athlete coordinator Mike Long to pull in a world-class field, like he did every year for the Carlsbad 5000 where so many world records were set.

Mike Long, the late Elite Racing athlete recruiter with Rock `n` Roll 1999 champs Tarus & Bogacheva

Nobody knew how fast RnR could be run until young Kenyan, Philip Tarus, busted a 2:10 opener for the men, with Russian women Nadezhda Ilyina and Irina Bogacheva battling just nine seconds apart at the finish for the women in 2:34. That told the athletes of the world, ‘This one is worth having a go,” especially after all the Suzuki products and prize money checks were handed out.

Not since the New York City Marathon’s first five-borough extravaganza in 1976 had a marathon come on the calendar with such dramatic impact: The largest first-time running event in history; the most ingenious show along the sidelines and at the finish ever produced; $18.6 million (net) raised by and for The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society’s Team In Training charity – the largest amount ever for a single-day sporting event; and to cap it off, world-class performances by its champions. 

Though the race lost over $1 million in its first year, it instantly became the number one economic impact event in Southern California, generating $39.3 million in its inaugural year, as two-thirds of its entrants came from outside the region. With Murphy’s persistence and the continued backing of his investors, Rock ‘n’ Roll eventually broke even in year three. Thus was the foundation set for what has become a global phenomenon, the so-called second-wave running boom.

Born and raised with two sisters in Denver, Colorado, Tim attended high school in Nebraska where he competed in the 880-yard run and threw the discus. He then spent the first part of his professional life toiling in the health care industry, selling hospital supplies on the road while moving across the country time and time again.  Finally, in the late 70s, he decided to abandon the rat race and settle in San Diego where his two sisters lived. 

Though he ran track in high school, he wasn’t a distance man. But once in San Diego and introduced to the area’s vibrant running community, like so many before him, he got hooked on the sport. Tim often trained up to 10 miles a day, which led him into the race organization business and the founding of Elite Racing in 1988. 

Always more of a behind the scenes workaholic than a flashy frontman, Tim did serve as interim race director for the troubled Chicago Marathon in 1989. But mostly he focused like a laser on the business side of Elite Racing. Tracy Sundlun, former head of New York City’s Metropolitan Athletics Congress, and a former collegiate and club track coach, joined as Tim’s partner in 1997, taking on  the role of political go-between and liaison with the sporting world. 

Through it all, Tim used his marketing and sales skills to build his race business from a fledgling local concern into the most successful for-profit organization in running. 

“We have lost someone who – I don’t think many of the insiders even grasp his importance, his significance,“ said Tracy Sundlun. “Besides Fred Lebow in New York City, Tim was the best retail marketer the sport has ever known. It makes me happy all the people who’ve reached out from all over the world when they heard news of his passing. Tim would’ve felt good knowing the people recognized what he built, what he reinvented.”

Beginning with the Carlsbad 5000 in 1986, Tim bucked the conventional norms of the sport. Nobody thought people would pay to run a 5K. Running at the time was a 10K and marathon trade. But Tim turned it into a 5K and half marathon business and the sport soon followed along.

Ethiopian great Tirunesh Dibaba breaks another world record at Carlsbad 2005 (14:51)

The success of the Rock ‘n’ Roll Marathon in San Diego changed Murphy’s fortunes for good. Over the next several years, Tim developed the brand into a seven event juggernaut that spread from San Diego to Virginia Beach, Nashville to Phoenix, San Jose, California to San Antonio, Texas.

Elite Racing was the first organization to stage more than one marathon in a year, and the first to put on events outside their own home city. Designed as a for-profit company in a not-for-profit industry, Elite Racing was the first organization to build a brand in the sport, though, initially they didn’t realize they were doing it. They were also the first to buy events and the first to sell to private-equity.

When the City of Virginia Beach, VA wanted to start a new marathon on Labor Day weekend in 2001, Tim made a site visit. He realized that with the heat and humidity of late summer in Virginia Beach, and not wanting to conflict with the fall marathons which had been so supportive of his races in San Diego in the summer and Nashville in the spring, there was  no way that a full marathon would work. So Tim convinced VB to create the first destination half-marathon, The Rock ‘n’ Roll Virginia Beach Half Marathon. Until then, half marathons were just local training races for marathons.

“Just like with Carlsbad in the 5K, nobody thought people would travel to run a half marathon,“ remembered Sundlun. “When we proposed Virginia Beach, we were one of Runner’s World Magazine‘s biggest advertisers. We said we were going to sell out at 12,000 for the Labor Day weekend race. People at Runner’s World said we were nuts. At the time, the largest half marathon was the Philadelphia Distance Run at 6000, the largest inaugural half marathon was on Long Island at 2900. 

“Runner’s World bet us a full, center-spread, double page ad that we wouldn’t hit our number. They didn’t even think vendors would come to a Labor Day weekend race in Virginia Beach. But we sold out by July and eventually got 14,990 entrants. Getting that check back from Runner’s World, that was really something.”

Deena Kastor headlined the inaugural Rock ‘n’ Roll Virginia Beach Half Marathon in 2001, setting an American debut record as a prep race for her marathon debut in New York City that fall. Kenyan superstars Martin Lel and Paul Tergat both tuned up for fall marathon victories with wins in Virginia Beach. 

Records were always important to Tim. He would often have side bets with Mike Long about the outcome of races. Two-time Olympic champion and multiple-time world record holder Haile Gebrselassie of Ethiopia broke the half marathon world record at Rock ‘n’ Roll Arizona in 2006 (58:55). And with 16 World Records / Bests and 11 American Records, Carlsbad was always recognized as The World’s Fastest 5K. 

“Tim felt if you created special events with a team of people who were passionate about the space they were in, the money would follow,” Sundlun told me. “He also understood that an event was only as good as its weakest link. So he was laser-focused on every aspect of the event, from the expo to the medal to the course to the elite athletes to the give-a-ways to the ads to the water stations, you name it.

“We never had a meeting about what to cut, just about how to improve. Tim understood you had to invest and promote relentlessly. He was tireless in his pursuit of greatness. Good people would join him and he empowered them and got out of their way. But he refused to take no for an answer, and had a single-minded focus.”

Tim even bought television’s Road Race of the Month from Salmini Films in 1991, the series that aired on ESPN for over a decade featuring the best races in the country and around the world. Tim understood that with television as a promotional arm, he could sell more advertising and attract more runners. 

The string of happy days ended abruptly in July 2007, however, when Elite Racing’s beloved athlete recruiter Mike Long died suddenly of a heart attack. Mike’s passing seemed to take the spark out of Tim. 

Later that year he sold the business to Falconhead Capital for more than $40 million. Elite Racing essentially became the event division of the new Competitor Group, Inc., and Tim moved on. Eventually, after Tracy also left, CGI abandoned the elite aspect of running altogether, before leaving San Diego, as well.

At times, Tim could be a volcanic boss, as his business was his life’s passion. Yet he engendered a deep dedication and respect from his Elite Racing family, out of which 17 marriages were spawned (including my own with Toya), growing families, and lifelong friendships. Tim’s final years were spent quietly, visiting with friends and his two sisters who were with him at the last.  

R.I.P., Tim. You were a true visionary who has left a legacy that moved us all both body and soul.

(08/23/2022) Views: 199 ⚡AMP
by Toni Reavis
Share
Share

Cheptegei leaves rivals with no response to retain world 10,000m title in Oregon

Just like the Olympic final in Tokyo, there was a mass queue of runners still in contention as the bell sounded in the men’s 10,000m final at the World Athletics Championships Oregon22.

On that occasion there were seven men remaining in the hunt for gold. This time there were eight.

There was another subtle difference as the 25-lap event built up to just as thrilling a crescendo as the women’s final the previous day. 

In Tokyo the slender Ethiopian Selemon Barega refused to budge from the front, keeping ahead of Uganda’s Joshua Cheptegei with a 53.9 final lap.

In Eugene, having controlled most of the race from halfway, Cheptegei hit the front again at the sound of the bell and stayed there. The fastest man in history at 5000m and 10,000m was not going to relinquish the title he toiled to gain in Doha three years ago.

Barega moved on to his shoulder down the back straight and looked set to pounce with 200m to go, but as Cheptegei led round the final bend and into the finishing stretch the world indoor 3000m champion had nothing in the tank.

Like Sifan Hassan in the women’s final, Barega faded out of the medals. Like Barega’s compatriot Letesenbet Gidey, Cheptegei gritted his teeth and kept his feet on the gas. The 25-year-old could afford to open his arms in celebration as he crossed the line 0.47 clear of his closest pursuer in 27:27.43.

In doing so, Cheptegei became only the fourth man to win back to back 10,000m world titles, following in the footsteps of Ethiopians Haile Gebrselassie and Kenenisa Bekele and Britain’s Mo Farah. His final lap was faster than Barega’s in Tokyo: 53.42.

"I knew that if I could get into the last fight, I could control it and I could speed it up," said Cheptegei, who won the world U20 title back at Hayward Field eight years ago. "It was very emotional for me to come back to the USA where I started my international career in 2014. Now, I want to continue my dominance in long distance running and I hope I will manage it."

The surprise silver medal winner, in 27:27.90, was Stanley Mburu. The world U20 silver medallist at 5000m in 2018, the 22-year-old Kenyan had quickly regained his composure after falling on the opening lap.

As in the Olympic final, Jacob Kiplimo took the bronze medal, Cheptegei’s compatriot clocking 27:27.97 to resist the challenge of home favourite Grant Fisher. The spirited US challenger had to settle for fourth in 27: 28.14, with Barega fifth in 27:28.39.

There were Ugandan flags fluttering in the stands as the 24 runners took their place on the start line, the loudest cheer coming for Fisher, who settled into second as Spain’s Carlos Mayo led through 400m in 66.70.

Mayo remained in front through 800m in 2:12.72, 1km in 2:46 and 2km in 5:51, with Fisher maintaining in second spot and Cheptegei keeping a watching brief on proceedings in third.

After Mayo passed 3km in 8:20.08, Cheptegei’s teammate Stephen Kissa took over at the front but without upping the pace.

Indeed, the speed slowed to 2:51 for the fourth kilometre, prompting Barega to show his face at the front for the first time with 13 laps to go, reaching halfway in 14.01.32.

Kiplimo was first to make a notable injection of pace, stretching out the field with a 64.46 lap. When Cheptegei moved through on to his compatriot’s heels, Barega was alert to the potential threat, surging back up into third.

Cheptegei then took over at the front but slowed the pace to steady laps of 67 seconds. All the while, Barega breezed along, eyes fixed on the target on Cheptegei’s back as 15 men remained in contention. 

With two laps to go, Mburu made the long run for home but at the bell there were still eight contenders. It was then, after a fleeing appearance at the front by Barega’s teammate Berihu Aregawi, that Cheptegei regained control – this time for good.

(07/17/2022) Views: 172 ⚡AMP
by World Athletics
Share
World Athletics Championships Oregon22

World Athletics Championships Oregon22

The World Athletics Championships was held in the United States for the first time ever. WCH Oregon22 was an unmissable global experience, and it took place in the United States for the very first time. The best track and field athletes in the world came together in a celebration of diversity, human potential, and athletic achievement. This extraordinary showcase took...

more...
Share

Ethiopia Has Changed Its Team Again for the 2022 Worlds

On Tuesday, the Ethiopian Athletics Federation announced its team for the 2022 World Athletics Championships in Eugene. If this sounds familiar, that’s because Ethiopia already named its team on June 13…and then updated it four days later to sub in Dawit Seyaum after she ran 14:25 to win the Oslo Diamond League.

Tuesday’s list — which the federation says is the final roster (it pretty much has to be, since entries were due to World Athletics on Monday) — features even more changes, which will have a major impact on Worlds, which begin on July 15 at Hayward Field. Remember, at World Indoor Championships earlier this year in Belgrade, Ethiopian athletes won eight of the 12 available medals across the 1500 and 3000 meters — including all four golds and a 1-2-3 sweep in the women’s 1500. The country is a distance powerhouse.

Here is the full roster, with changes, followed by some analysis on what it all means.

Men’s 800 (no changes)Ermiyas GirmaTolosa Bodena

Women’s 800Habitam AlemuDiribe WeltejiHirut Meshesha (1:58.54 sb) replacing Freweyni Hailu (1:59.39 sb)

Men’s 1500Samuel TeferaTaddese Lemi (3:37.06 sb) replacing Melese Nberet (no races this year)Samuel Abate

Women’s 1500Gudaf Tsegay (3:54.21 sb) replacing Axumawit Embaye (3:58.80 sb)Freweyni Hailu (3:58.18 sb, 4th in Olympics) replacing Ayal Dagnachew (3:59.87 sb)Hirut Meshesha

Men’s 3000 steeple (no changes)Lamecha GirmaHailemariyam AmareGetnet Wale

Women’s 3000 steepleMekides AbebeWorkua GetachewSimbo Alemayehu (9:09.17 sb at age 18) replacing Zerfe Wondemagegn (9:27.75 sb)

Men’s 5,000Muktar EdrisBerihu AregawiYomif KejelchaSelemon Barega replacing Telahun Bekele

Women’s 5,000Ejgayehu TayeLetesenbet Gidey (14:24.59 sb) replacing Gudaf Tsegay (14:26.69 sb)Dawit Seyaum (14:25.84 sb) replacing Fantu Worku (14:47.37 sb)

Men’s 10,000Selemon BaregaTadese WorkuBerihu Aregawi (26:46.13 sb) replacing Milkesa Mengesha (27:00.24 sb)

Women’s 10,000Letesenbet GideyEjgayehu Taye (30:44.68 sb) replacing Girmawit Gebrzihair (30:47.72 sb)Bosena Mulate

Men’s marathonLelisa DesisaTamirat TolaMosinet GeremewSeifu Tura

Women’s marathonGotytom GebreslaseAbabel YeshanehAshete Bekere

Quick Takes

1) Ethiopia’s team just got A LOT stronger and Ethiopia went from no one doubling to a lot of doublers

In recent years, Ethiopia has been reluctant to allow its stars to double at global championships. Last year in Tokyo, Ethiopia had two huge 5,000m medal threats in Selemon Barega (Olympic 10,000 champ) and Berihu Aregawi (the 10,000 4th placer who would go on to win the Diamond League 5,000 title) but neglected to enter either in the 5,000 meters. Of the three men Ethiopia did enter, two failed to even make the final and the third, Milkesa Mengesha, wound up 10th.

The federation took criticism after that misstep and it looked as if it would double down in 2022 as the initial team named in June featured no doublers. But the final squad features five athletes double-entered: World Indoor bronze medalist Hirut Meshesha (800/1500) and Ejgayehu Taye (14:12 pb, #5 woman all-time), Letesenbet Gidey (women’s 5k/10k world record holder), Barega and Aregawi, all of whom are running the 5,000 and 10,000.

2) The meet is more interesting with the Ethiopians doubling; the men’s 5,000 final is now totally stacked

The World Championships are meant to be about the best against the best. When a world final is over, we don’t want to be asking ourselves, “What would have happened if Athlete X was in the race?” But that’s absolutely what we were thinking after the 2021 Olympic 5000 final without Barega. And it’s been an issue for a lot longer than that. Only once in his career did Haile Gebrselassie attempt the 5,000/10,000 double at a global champs (1993), in part because there were still prelims in the 10,000 in those days and in part because he didn’t want to tire himself for the lucrative post-championship meets in Europe.

That shouldn’t be an issue in 2022 (and if it is, it won’t have been the fault of the Ethiopian federation) as the distance finals are much stronger with Taye, Gidey, Barega, and Aregawi doubling up. The men’s 5,000 could be an all-timer. Not only do you have Olympic 5,000 champion Joshua Cheptegei of Uganda, but now we have Olympic 10,000 champ Barega stepping down and Olympic 1500 champion Jakob Ingebrigtsen stepping up. It’s reminiscent of one of the most famous races in track history, the 2003 World Championship 5,000 final in Paris which featured Hicham El Guerrouj stepping up from the 1500 and Kenenisa Bekele stepping down from the 10,000 only for both of them to be defeated by an 18-year-old Eliud Kipchoge.

Having Aregawi in the 10,000 makes for a stronger race as well as he was 3rd at the Ethiopian trials in that event and set a Diamond League record for margin for victory when he ran 12:50 to win the Pre Classic 5,000 by 16 seconds.

3) Gudaf Tsegay’s medal odds went up but her gold medal odds went down

Tsegay is pretty clearly the #2 women’s 1500 runner in the world. She won World Indoors by 5+ seconds and is 3+ seconds faster than the #3 1500 woman in the world right now. But she’s also not close to double Olympic champ Faith Kipyegon, who beat her convincingly at Pre, 3:52.59 to 3:54.21.

Initially, Tsegay was entered in the 5,000 at Worlds (she ran the 5,000 only at the Olympics last year, earning the bronze medal) and while there’s no overwhelming favorite in that event like Kipyegon (well at least until we see how Sifan Hassan looks this weekend), Tsegay is not as good at the 5,000 as the 1500 (as evidenced by her defeat to countrywoman Dawit Seyaum in the 5,000 in Oslo). By running the 1500, Tsegay has a better shot at a medal but her odds at gold are worse.

4) It just got a WHOLE LOT harder for the Americans to medal

An American medal in the women’s 5,000 or 10,000 was already unlikely, so the Ethiopian roster changes didn’t make a huge impact on the chances of Karissa Schweizer or Elise Cranny. But the medal odds of Grant Fisher, who finished 5th in the Olympic 10,000 last year, are way lower today than they were a week ago (a statement also true for his US teammates Woody Kincaid and Joe Klecker).

Last Wednesday, two of the four men who finished ahead of Fisher in the 10,000 in Tokyo were major question marks. Bronze medalist Jacob Kiplimo hadn’t raced on the track all year, while Aregawi, the 4th placer, was named to Ethiopia’s team in the 5,000 only. Since then, Kiplimo ran 7:29 for 3,000 in Stockholm to show he’s very fit right now and Aregawi was added to Ethiopia’s 10,000 squad. Plus Barega was added to the 5,000.

Those developments will make it significantly harder for Fisher (or any American man in the 5,000 or 10,000) to earn a medal. That said, if an American can somehow medal, it will go down as a monumental achievement since no one can accuse these fields of being watered down.

Sinclaire Johnson‘s medal hopes in the 1500 also took a BIG hit. With Tsegay now in the 1500, two medals seem to be spoken for and new addition Freweyni Hailu, who was 4th in the Olympics last year at age 20, is better than Ayal Dagnachew (who is no slouch herself, world junior 800 champ last year and 3:59 this year).

5) Ethiopia needs to figure out a better way to do this

One of the most important jobs an athletics federation has is selecting national teams. And for countries that don’t use a “top 3 at the trials” model — which is to say, every country except for the US — things can get prickly as someone, inevitably, is going to be upset they’re missing out on the team.

There are ways to limit the outrage. The simplest solution is the one USATF has already discovered: hold a trials and just pick the top three finishers. Ethiopia actually did this ahead of the Olympics last year. The problem was, they held all the races on the same day, making it impossible for athletes to try out for both the 5,000 and 10,000 teams.

But even if you don’t want to stage a trials, a federation can avoid much of the backlash by announcing a clear criteria ahead of time and sticking to it. You want to pick the team based off season’s bests? Fine. Just let everyone know before the season starts and let them plan their races accordingly. Transparency and consistency are the keys.

Heck, even if you want to be subjective and use a selection panel, you can at least cut down on some of the drama by letting the athletes know in advance that they’ll have to run a few performances to impress the selectors.

What you don’t want to do is announce a team well before the entry deadline (and three days before two key Diamond League meets featuring most of your athletes) only to drastically change it three weeks later. Which is exactly what happened in Ethiopia, leaving athletes like Telahun Bekele (winner of the 5,000 in Oslo) to think they’re on the team only to yank it away less than a month later.

In the end, Ethiopia ended up picking the team by season’s best except in the 10,000, where it staged a trial race (and the top 3 there were the fastest 3 on the year). If it had just used that criteria throughout the year and stuck to it, there would be fewer angry people right now. The athletes deserve better.

(07/08/2022) Views: 249 ⚡AMP
by Jonathan Gault
Share
World Athletics Championships Oregon22

World Athletics Championships Oregon22

The World Athletics Championships was held in the United States for the first time ever. WCH Oregon22 was an unmissable global experience, and it took place in the United States for the very first time. The best track and field athletes in the world came together in a celebration of diversity, human potential, and athletic achievement. This extraordinary showcase took...

more...
Share

Amazing Wins and an Event Record at the 2022 United Airlines NYC Half

The United Airlines NYC Half made a spectacular return to the streets of New York City today as the first major NYRR race back at full scale since the onset of the pandemic.

This year’s event featured the strongest professional athlete field in event history, including 23 Olympians, eight Paralympians, six half-marathon national record holders, and the defending wheelchair division champions. In ideal racing conditions, the pro races played out thrillingly over 13.1 miles of New York City streets.

In the men’s wheelchair division, Daniel Romanchuk of the United States defended his title in a time of 49:22, more than two minutes faster than his winning time from 2019 and four minutes up on the rest of the field today. “I’m really happy to be back in New York racing and see the city so alive,” said Romanchuk a two-time Paralympic medalist and two-time TCS New York City Marathon winner.

 For the women open race,  Senbere Teferi of Ethiopia and Irene Cheptai of Kenya pulled ahead early and ran shoulder to shoulder in Brooklyn, across the Manhattan Bridge, and through Manhattan.

Teferi prevailed in the end, setting an event record of 1:07:35 and breaking Molly Huddle’s record by six seconds. Cheptai was also under the old record in a time of 1:07:37. “I was being very careful throughout the race and watching my pace,” said Teferi through a translator. “I’m very happy to have won.” Her victory is all the more remarkable given that she briefly took a wrong turn in the race’s final 100 meters. Karoline Bjerkeli Grøvdal of Norway was third in 1:08:07. 

The men’s open division saw 22-year-old Rhonex Kipruto outlast a lead pack of four runners and break the tape in 1:00:30, just over a minute off the event record of 59:24, held by Haile Gebrselassie. Edward Cheserek of Kenya was second in 1:00:37 and Teshome Mekonen of Ethiopia finished third in 1:00:40.

“I feel good because I’ve come back again to win, and my first win was in New York,” said Kipruto, referring to his 2018 victory in the Healthy Kidney 10K in Central Park. “It was not an easy win today because the course was very hilly. It was about the win, not about the time.”

Today’s events also included the return of the Times Square Kids Run at the United Airlines NYC Half for hundreds of youth ages 8–18. 

(03/20/2022) Views: 348 ⚡AMP
Share
United Airlines NYC Half-Marathon

United Airlines NYC Half-Marathon

The United Airlines NYC Half takes runners from around the city and the globe on a 13.1-mile tour of NYC. Led by a talent-packed roster of American and international elites, runners will stop traffic in the Big Apple this March! Runners will begin their journey on Prospect Park’s Center Drive before taking the race onto Brooklyn’s streets. For the third...

more...
Share

What it takes to become a Kenyan distance champion

For several generations now, Kenya has produced many of the world’s greatest distance runners.

Many athletes from elsewhere in the world, meanwhile, have tried to tap into the secrets of Kenya’s success as they try to play catch-up – quite literally – with the east African nation that continues to churn out global medallists and world record-breakers.

The truth is, there is no one single reason why Kenya is so dominant in distance events. It’s more down to a combination of factors, many of which were explained during a recent trip to the NN Running training camp in Kaptagat, about 24km east of Eldoret, where the likes of Eliud Kipchoge trains for 11 months of the year.

A way of life

There are few countries where people live and breathe athletics, and where the No.1 Olympic sport can claim to be more popular than football, filling entire stadiums even for age-group championships.

And while Kenya isn’t the only country in the world where kids run long distances to get to school, running has a whole different meaning to many people in the country.

Running is something that comes naturally to us as it’s something that has been part of our lifestyle since we were born,” says three-time world half marathon champion and two-time New York City Marathon champion Geoffrey Kamworor. “As a kid, I used to run from home to my school three kilometres away back and forth each day, so you end up running sometimes 12 kilometres a day as a teen without even realising it.”

Beyond being a means to an end, there is also a genuine love for running among the Kenyan population.

“As a kid, I would always go and watch athletics competitions when not at school and I enjoyed watching people competing,” added Kamworor. “It awoke my passion for running, especially seeing people cross the finish line and winning a trophy. In high school, it was always a fun and proud moment to represent your class and win a cup. I found it very encouraging.”

Having running embedded into day-to-day life sets Kenya apart from many other nations. But it’s just one of the many reasons why it is known as being the ‘home of the champions’.

Genetics

Simply running to school each day doesn’t automatically turn everyone into a world-class athlete. Genetics, as it does for every elite athlete, likely play a significant part.

Many people in the Rift Valley, where most of Kenya’s top distance runners originate, belong to the Kalenjin tribe. When compared to other Kenyan tribes, Kalenjin people are often described as having good natural running attributes: namely lean bodies and long legs.

Kipchoge, for example, isn’t particularly tall (1.67m / 5ft 6in), but the muscles on his legs are incredibly lean, his body fat percentage is low, and the strength in his feet make it appear as though he bounces along the grass.

But attributing all of Kenya’s success to just their genetics would be a gross over-simplification.

Conditions

Another element that helps Kenyan athletes in their training and preparation is the unique climate and surroundings in this part of the country. It also probably explains why there are so many training camps between Kaptagat and Iten, and why some people refer to it as the ‘Hollywood of elite runners’.

This region is located at 2500 metres above sea level, which, given the lack of oxygen, helps athletes produce a higher concentration of red blood cells and haemoglobin when training. This, in turn, gives runners an advantage when they return to lower altitudes to race.

The Eldoret region is also full of endless forests and dirt roads for athletes to use when running, while the area also enjoys a temperate climate with daytime temperatures ranging between 22-26C (68-78F) throughout the year, dropping to 10-12C (50-53F) at night time. That, combined with the good air quality, makes the area something of a distance-running paradise.

But as Kenya’s economy continues to develop, so do the local villages and the wider region, meaning many of the local dirt paths are now being made into proper roads – which is great for facilitating transport and access from other points of the country, but less so for athletes seeking a run-friendly surface.

Athletes are adapting well to this evolving environment, though, while remaining in close contact with nature. The Kalenjin community, Kipchogeand Kamworor  included, are running many tree-planting initiatives. “We evolve in a very natural environment which is a great advantage when it comes to training,” says Kamworor.

Patrick Sang, the 1992 Olympic silver steeplechase medallist and head coach at the Kaptagat training camp, explains how the new generation of running shoes can help counter the effects of running on harder roads.

“New running shoes help a lot because athletes can now do a lot more training on a hard surface and still recover on time to do their next hard session,” says Sang. “Overall, you can get more work done to help improve performance.”

Sleep, eat, train, repeat

Most world-class athletes are fully committed to their sport, but the elite runners at the Kaptagat training camp in particular take dedication to a whole new level.

Many of these athletes – including young mothers such as two-time Olympic 1500m champion Faith Kipyegon – have children who are at home during the week so that they can entirely focus on their training at the camp.

“Of course, it’s very hard but that’s the only way to be fully dedicated to being the best athlete you can and avoid any distraction,” said Kipyegon.

When not running, athletes at the Kaptagat training camp are focused entirely on other elements of their training, namely recovery and nutrition.

“When you are at the camp, your sole focus is on running and you are not distracted by anything else,” says Kamworor, father to five children, including young triplets. “You are away from your family, your wife and your kids during the whole week, and that makes you take your training very seriously as you are making sacrifices to achieve your goals. That’s the only way to be focused 100% on running and to give your very best.”

As in any walk of life, hard work and having the right mind-set are key to success. Kipchoge might be the most successful athlete at the camp, but Sang says that’s not just down to his talent. “Eliud isn’t the most gifted athlete within his training group but certainly the most dedicated,” Sang says of Kipchoge, who is always the first one ready for training and the last one to leave.

In an average week, athletes at the Kaptagat camp do one long run of 30km (once a month it will be 40km), which usually takes place early on a Thursday morning. Typical track sessions, meanwhile, would be something like 8x1600m (each rep completed in 4:40) and 8x400m (at an average of 65 seconds) on their local 380m cinder track.

“Have you seen him?” Sang says when watching Kipchoge train. “This guy is a machine.”

Athletes are religious in their approach to punctuality and producing their best effort in training. And other local athletes from outside the NN Running team are welcome to join in the sessions, provided they arrive on time. After all, no one wants to be playing catch-up with the likes of Kipchoge and Kamworor.

Community

The Kaptagat training camp is run entirely by the 25 athletes who live there for 11 months a year from Monday to Saturday morning before going back to spend quality time with their family, often in the big city of Eldoret. In and around the 12 training runs they do in a typical week, the resident athletes to everything at the camp.

“If you look at life at the camp, the one making bread is an athlete, the cleaning is done by the athletes, the one doing shopping for the camp is an athlete,” says Sang. “You don’t want athletes to live on another island.

“The whole idea is to make sure these athletes become well-rounded people. You wouldn’t want to help someone become a great athlete who lacks social skills or is out of touch with society.”

Kipchoge, whose wife and three children live just 45 minutes away from the training camp, could easily go and spend time with his family during his time off, but instead he chooses to stay at the camp with the rest of the group, monastically isolated from the rest of the world.

Kipchoge is rarely bored, too. When he’s not training or resting, he will be reading or working at the camp or reading.

The sense of community extends to caring about the environment. Every athlete at the camp gets a tree planted at the entrance as a welcome gesture and to symbolise their connection to nature. Some special guests to the camp – including Ethiopian legend Haile Gebrselassie – have also had a tree planted for them in Kaptagat.

Occasionally, athletes at the camp will give each other lessons, or they will engage in real debates around serious issues, helping them develop holistically as people.

Simplicity

Far away from the latest technological innovations you often hear about in other parts of the world, daily life at the camp is basic.

Upon entering the gates at the Kaptagat training camp, the 380m cinder track is located on the left. It has a slight incline on the first bend and a couple of cows as spectators, but it meets all their needs.

“A synthetic track isn’t needed for what we do and the way we train,” says Marc Roig, a former international runner from Spain, who now works as a jack of all trades for NN Running, acting as a fitness coach, physio, runner, mentor and pacemaker. “If our athletes need a synthetic track, they can go to the one in Eldoret an hour away.” In fact, there are just four synthetic tracks in the whole of Kenya, but it’s clearly not a barrier to producing top athletes.

The runners at the camp rarely lift weights or spend time stretching, but twice a week they will do core strength sessions. Instead of water, they drink mursik – a nutritious fermented milk – in the morning and Kenyan tea in the afternoon. And not a single drop of water during their 30km long run. “That’s okay,” says Sang. “They don’t need it.”

Within the camp itself, there is a TV room with a small library corner with a few books there for the athletes, a living room for their meals, the dormitory (one for women and another for men), a basic gym comprising a bike, a treadmill, some elastic bands and a light weightlifting bar (with maximum 40kg available) and a big blue plastic drum outside used for ice baths.

It’s all quite rudimentary, but they don’t need more, and it seems to work.

The only visible ‘luxury’ – aside from the eco-friendly solar panels to get hot water – is that Kipchoge has his own bedroom. But even the king of the marathon does his fair share of the chores. He prepares tea for other athletes, and there’s a strict cleaning schedule that all athletes must stick to.

“I think that when you stop leading a simple life, your mind-set loses contact with the outside world and you lose your focus on your actual goals,” says Kipchoge. “At this point, you run the risk of forgetting about the really important things in life.”

Life at the camp is minimalistic, but nobody complains. Indeed, this simplicity is what defines them and enables the athletes to keep their focus and remain humble about who they are, where they come from and what they are here for.

Hollywood of running

To be the best, you need to surround yourself with the best – which is another reason why the Rift Valley continues to produce champion athletes.

The likes of Kipchoge, Kamworor and Kipyegon are true A-listers, but Kaptagat is filled with talented athletes who have achieved podium finishes at major championships and big city marathons.

Roig, who has a 2:18:05 marathon PB, moved to Kenya several years ago. “When I take my kids to school, I feel ashamed saying I am a runner as many of the dads there have 2:05 marathon PBs,” jokes Roig, who is now the race director for the Valencia Marathon. “There is even a mother at the school who has a PB similar to mine!”

But the Kaptagat camp isn’t the only leading training venue in the area. Iten, a small town at 2400 metres above sea level about an hour north of Kaptagat, is often referred to as the ‘home of champions’ or the ‘Hollywood of distance running’.

One of the drivers used for NN Running Team’s trip to Kenya, for example, was a former 1:06 half marathon runner. His wife, meanwhile, was a 2:21 marathon runner who finished second at the Rotterdam Marathon a couple of years ago. His neighbour is Emmanuel Korir, the Olympic 800m champion, and he is good friends with Joyciline Jepkosgei, the multiple world record-breaker and 2021 London Marathon champion.

Abdi Nageeye, the Olympic marathon silver medallist, also happened to be in Iten at the time of the trip. While ferrying around members of the media, the driver passed by a gas station named ‘Oslo’, which is one of many local businesses owned by Vivian Cheruiyot. The 2016 Olympic 5000m champion opened the station after winning at the Oslo Diamond League meeting.

One of the biggest training venues in Iten is the High Altitude Training Centre founded by multiple world half marathon champion Lornah Kiplagat, who herself is part of a highly successful family of runners, including Sylvia Kibet, Hilda Kibet and Susan Sirma. Many international athletes, including the likes of Mo Farah and Paula Radcliffe, have previously stayed there, while former steeplechaser Bob Tahri of France opened his own training centre in Iten a few years ago.

The Rift Valley – Iten and Kaptagat in particular – is like nowhere else on earth. Everybody knows a champion who is friends with another champion, who is the neighbour of another champion.

It’s yet another way – and one of the many – of becoming a great runner.

(01/16/2022) Views: 515 ⚡AMP
by World Athletics
Share
Share

Seyaum and Yihune claim Campaccio crowns

Dawit Seyaum and Addisu Yihune achieved an Ethiopian double at the 65th edition of the Campaccio in San Giorgio su Legnano, the eighth Gold level meeting of this season’s World Athletics Cross Country Tour, on Thursday (6).

The 2022 edition of the popular Northern Italian race celebrated the 100th anniversary of the local sports club Unione Sportiva Sangiorgese.

In the women’s race, Eritrea’s Rahel Daniel Ghebreyohannes took the early lead ahead of a seven-women group featuring Ethiopia’s Medina Eisa, Kenya’s world U20 champion Beatrice Chebet, Seyaum, Kenya’s Lucy Mawia, Ethiopia’s Fantaye Belayneh, Italy’s Anna Arnaudo and her compatriot Nadia Battocletti, the European U23 cross country champion. The leading pack went through the 2km mark in 6:38.

Seven runners remained at the front as the pace picked up at 4km. Seyaum changed gear, clocking a split of 2:49 between 4km and 5km. The leading pack was whittled down to five runners at 5km.

Seyaum, Chebet and Daniel Ghebreyohannes broke away with 500 metres to go and battled it out for the win. Seyaum unleashed her final kick to cross the finish line in 18:48, holding off Atapuerca cross country winner Daniel Ghebreyohannes by just one second in a close sprint. Chebet was beaten for the second time in this cross country season by Daniel Ghebreyohannes and had to settle for third place in 18:51 ahead of Belayneh (18:56) and Eisa (19:05).

Battocletti edged her Slovenian rival Klara Lukan to finish sixth in 19:06.

Seyaum claimed a back-to-back win after her recent triumph at the Boclassic 5km road race in Bolzano last Friday.

The men’s race saw a big group featuring Kenya’s Vincent Kipkurui Too, Emmanuel Korir Kiplagat and Amos Serem, together with Ethiopia’s Yihune, Eritrea’s Aron Kifle and Italian runners Iliass Aouani, Yohanes Chiappinelli and Eyob Ghebrehiwet Faniel, go through 3km in 8:43.

Too set the pace at the front of an eight-man group, closely followed by Serem, Kiplagat, Kifle, Yihune and Faniel during the third lap. They went through 4km in 11:46 and 5km in 14:30.

Aouani was the first to drop back at 7km and the leading group was whittled down to seven athletes. Kiplagat then moved to the front ahead of six other runners: Serem, Kifle, Faniel, Too, Yihune and Chiappinelli. 

The first significant move came at 8km when Yihune, Kiplagat, Too, Serem and Kifle picked up the pace and pulled away from marathon runner Faniel by two seconds. Yihune pushed on at the front and increased his lead during the last lap, going on to cross the finish line in 28:39 with a six-second gap over Kiplagat.

Serem, who won the world U20 gold medal in the 3000m steeplechase in Nairobi last August, won a very close sprint for third place in 28:53, holding off Too. Kifle rounded out the top five in 28:59.

Faniel finished sixth as the first Italian athlete in 29:15, beating European 3000m steeplechase bronze medallist Chiappinelli (29:21) and Italian cross country champion Aouani (29:45).

Yihune joined the list of Ethiopian stars who have won the Campaccio race, that includes Haile Gebrselassie, Kenenisa Bekele, Muktar Edris, Imane Merga and Hagos Gebrhiwet.

Yihune, who will turn 19 in March, finished fourth in the 5000m at the World U20 Championships in Nairobi and clocked a PB of 12:58.99 over this distance in Hengelo last June.

“I felt confident during the race that I could win, as I knew that I was well prepared,” said Yihune. “I train with Selemon Barega. He is my role model.”

(01/09/2022) Views: 320 ⚡AMP
by World Athletics
Share
Share

Githae wins final edition of Fukuoka Marathon

Michael Githae was victorious at the 75th and final edition of Fukuoka International Marathon on Sunday (5), winning the World Athletics Elite Label road race in 2:07:51.

Githae, who runs for Suzuki track team, improved his previous best of 2:08:17, which he set when finishing fourth at last year’s Fukuoka Marathon. Japan’s Kyohei Hosoya finished second, 25 seconds adrift of Githae.

The pacers, led by 2012 Olympian Yuki Sato, directed the huge lead pack through 5km (14:47), 10km (29:39), 15km (44:30) and 20km (59:24) in what turned out to be something of a race of attrition. Yuta Shitara was one of the athletes to fall out of contention before the half-way stage; the former national marathon record-holder dropped out at 20km.

The half-way point was reached in 1:02:41, meaning an attack on the 2:05:18 course record was not out of the question. Simon Kariuki and Charles Wanjiku kept the pace going at the start of the second half, and 30km was reached in 1:29:08. But the pacemakers dropped out soon after, and the pace dramatically slowed down.

Nevertheless, the pack became strung out to almost a single file, and by 34km just Githae, James Rungaru, Hosoya and Ryu Takaku remained in contention. Soon after, Githae surged and Hosoya made a valiant effort to stay close but Githae gradually pulled away to win by 25 seconds in 2:07:51.

In third, Rungaru set a PB of 2:08:25, while fourth-placed Shohei Otsuka and Ryu Takaku and Daisuke Uekado in fifth and sixth respectively were just outside their PBs. Yuki Kawauchi, running his 12th Fukuoka Marathon, fittingly finished 12th in 2:11:33. He is planning on running the Hofu Marathon in two weeks’ time.

Looking back at Fukuoka's history

The Fukuoka International Marathon – which was awarded a World Athletics Heritage Plaque in 2019 – started in 1947 and is the second oldest marathon in Japan behind the now defunct Lake Biwa Marathon.

In its 75-year history, the world record was broken twice there – first in 1967 when Derek Clayton became the first runner to break 2:10 with 2:09:37, and then in 1981 when fellow Australian Rob de Castella ran 2:08:18.

De Castella isn’t the only global marathon champion to have contested the race over the years. Frank Shorter, the 1972 Olympic champion, notched up four consecutive Fukuoka Marathon victories between 1971 and 1974. 2000 Olympic champion Gezahegn Abera won in 1999, 2001 and 2002, while 1996 Olympic champion Josiah Thugwane won in 1997. The late Samuel Wanjiru, winner of the 2008 Olympic title, made a remarkable marathon debut in Fukuoka in 2007, winning in 2:06:39. And two-time world champion Jaoud Gharib won in 2010.

Numerous world record-holders have also competed in Fukuoka, including Haile Gebrselassie (winner in 2006), Belayneh Dinsamo (1990 winner) and Patrick Makau (2014 and 2015 champion).

Japanese runners have also enjoyed moments of victory in Fukuoka. Toshihiko Seko won four times (1978-1980 and 1983), and Takeyuki Nakayama won twice (1984 and 1987). During his 1987 run, Nakayama was on world record pace through 20km (58:37) and 35km until a heavy downpour in the closing stages slowed him down, and he eventually finished in 2:08:18.

When asked about the end of the Fukuoka Marathon, four-time winner Seko said: “It is like part of my history is being erased.”

Japan Running News, a leading authority on the sport in Japan, has produced a docu-film on the Fukuoka Marathon, entitled ‘Inside the Outside – When the World Came to Fukuoka’.

Leading results

1 Michael Githae (KEN) 2:07:512 Kyohei Hosoya (JPN) 2:08:163 James Rungaru (KEN) 2:08:254 Shohei Otsuka (JPN) 2:08:335 Ryu Takaku (JPN) 2:08:386 Daisuke Uekado (JPN) 2:08:567 Kohei Futaoka (JPN) 2:09:148 Masaya Taguchi (JPN) 2:09:359 Toshiki Sadakata (JPN) 2:10:3110 Takuma Kumagai (JPN) 2:10:4111 Ryota Komori (JPN) 2:11:3212 Yuki Kawauchi (JPN) 2:11:33

(12/05/2021) Views: 300 ⚡AMP
Share
Share

Ethiopia's Haile Gebrselassie and Feyisa Lilesa ready to join Tigray war

Ethiopian Olympic heroes Haile Gebrselassie and Feyisa Lilesa say they are ready to go to the front line in the war against rebel forces.

Their announcement comes after Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed said he would go to the front to lead the war.

Tigrayan rebels say they are advancing towards the capital Addis Ababa.

The UK has urged its nationals to leave Ethiopia immediately, saying the fighting may move closer to Addis Ababa in the coming days.

The rebels earlier this week said that they had taken control of Shewa Robit, a town about 225km (140 miles) north-east of Addis Ababa. There is no independent confirmation of the claim.

Communication Minister Legese Tulu said the military has had "many successes" since Mr Abiy's decision to lead the battle, and victory was "so close".

Earlier, Gebrselassie, 48, was quoted by state television as saying: "I am ready to do whatever is required of me, including going to the front line."

Gebrselassie is regarded as a legend in Ethiopia, and his comments were seen as an attempt to rally public support behind the war effort.

During his 25-year career as an athlete, he claimed two Olympic gold medals, eight World Championship victories and set 27 world records. He announced his retirement from competitive running in 2015.

Expressing his support for the war, Feyisa, 31, was quoted by the state-affiliated Fana Broadcasting Corporation website as saying that he was ready to draw inspiration from the "gallantry of my forefathers" and go to the front line to "save my country".

The athlete won the marathon silver at the 2016 Rio Olympics.

He became famous for holding up his crossed wrists as if they were shackled to draw global attention to the crackdown on demonstrators demanding political reforms in Ethiopia.

The Tigray People's Liberation Front (TPLF) was the dominant party in government at the time. Following the protests, Mr Abiy became prime minister and the TPLF lost the grip on the country it had held for 27 years.

It later retreated to its stronghold of Tigray, from where it launched a rebellion last November after a huge fall-out with Mr Abiy over his reforms.

The war has created a massive humanitarian crisis, leaving thousands dead, forcing millions from their homes, and several hundred thousand in famine-like conditions as aid agencies battle to get food in war-affected areas.

The African Union is leading efforts to find a negotiated end to the fighting, but neither side has committed to talks.

The TPLF are advancing towards Addis Ababa on the A2 highway.

On Tuesday, Germany and France advised their citizens to leave Ethiopia.

The prospect of some of Ethiopia's most venerated sporting figures heading to the front lines to fight captures something profound and powerful about the mood in Addis Ababa and beyond.

At a time of intense crisis, many Ethiopians are clearly rallying behind their flag and prime minister, and are keen to play their part in galvanising public support for a military campaign that has suffered undeniable setbacks in recent months, though much remains in dispute in terms of casualty figures and battlefield momentum.

It is clear many people see the military threat posed by the TPLF and their assorted allies as an existential one for Ethiopia.

Added to that is a profound dislike of the TPLF itself, which stems from its decades heading an authoritarian national government. But there is more to it than that.

The prime minister has sought to portray his country as a victim, not just of Tigrayan aggression, but of a vast international conspiracy designed to weaken Ethiopia and punish it for, allegedly, challenging Western colonial interests on the continent.

Western media are portrayed as enthusiastic backers of that conspiracy theory - one which appears to have gained widespread credibility in a country struggling to explain how the rebel group could have made such startling headway.

 

 

 

(11/27/2021) Views: 993 ⚡AMP
by BBC
Share
Share

Ethiopia's Haile Gebrselassie and Feyisa Lilesa ready to join Tigray war

Ethiopian Olympic heroes Haile Gebrselassie and Feyisa Lilesa say they are ready to go to the front line in the war against rebel forces.

Their announcement comes after Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed said he would go to the front to lead the war.

Tigrayan rebels say they are advancing towards the capital Addis Ababa.

Germany and France have become the latest countries to advise their citizens to leave Ethiopia, amid an escalation in the civil war.

On Tuesday, US envoy to the region Jeffrey Feltman warned that tentative diplomatic progress towards ending the conflict was being jeopardised by alarming developments on the ground.

The rebels earlier this week said that they had taken control of Shewa Robit, a town about 225km (140 miles) north-east of Addis Ababa. There is no independent confirmation of the claim.

Communication Minister Legese Tulu said the military has had "many successes" since Mr Abiy's decision to lead the battle, and victory was "so close".

With Mr Abiy gone to direct the war effort, his deputy, Demeke Mekonnen Hasse, had taken charge of routine government business, a spokesman was quoted by state-linked media as saying.

Mr Abiy's announcement has bolstered recruitment for the army, with hundreds of new recruits attending a ceremony, marked by patriotic songs, in Addis Ababa on Wednesday.

Communication Minister Legese Tulu said the military has had "many successes" since Mr Abiy's decision to lead the battle, and victory was "so close".

Earlier, Gebrselassie, 48, was quoted by state television as saying: "I am ready to do whatever is required of me, including going to the front line," he said.

Gebrselassie is regarded as a legend in Ethiopia, and his comments were seen as an attempt to rally public support behind the war effort.

During his 25-year career as an athlete, he claimed two Olympic gold medals, eight World Championship victories and set 27 world records. He announced his retirement from competitive running in 2015.

Expressing his support for the war, Feyisa, 31, was quoted by the state-affiliated Fana Broadcasting Corporation website as saying that he was ready to draw inspiration from the "gallantry of my forefathers" and go to the front line to "save my country".

The athlete won the marathon silver at the 2016 Rio Olympics.

He became famous for holding up his crossed wrists as if they were shackled to draw global attention to the crackdown on demonstrators demanding political reforms in Ethiopia.

The Tigray People's Liberation Front (TPLF) was the dominant party in government at the time. Following the protests, Mr Abiy became prime minister and the TPLF lost the grip on the country it had held for 27 years.

It later retreated to its stronghold of Tigray, from where it launched a rebellion last November after a huge fall-out with Mr Abiy over his reforms.

The war has created a massive humanitarian crisis, leaving thousands dead, forcing millions from their homes, and several hundred thousand in famine-like conditions as aid agencies battle to get food in war-affected areas.

The African Union is leading efforts to find a negotiated end to the fighting, but neither side has committed to talks.

The TPLF are advancing towards Addis Ababa on the A2 highway, having previously said they had taken Kemise.

The prospect of some of Ethiopia's most venerated sporting figures heading to the front lines to fight captures something profound and powerful about the mood in Addis Ababa and beyond.

At a time of intense crisis, many Ethiopians are clearly rallying behind their flag and prime minister, and are keen to play their part in galvanising public support for a military campaign that has suffered undeniable setbacks in recent months, though much remains in dispute in terms of casualty figures and battlefield momentum.

It is clear many people see the military threat posed by the TPLF and their assorted allies as an existential one for Ethiopia.

Added to that is a profound dislike of the TPLF itself, which stems from its decades heading an authoritarian national government. But there is more to it than that.

The prime minister has sought to portray his country as a victim, not just of Tigrayan aggression, but of a vast international conspiracy designed to weaken Ethiopia and punish it for, allegedly, challenging Western colonial interests on the continent.

Western media are portrayed as enthusiastic backers of that conspiracy theory - one which appears to have gained widespread credibility in a country struggling to explain how the rebel group could have made such startling headway.

(11/24/2021) Views: 428 ⚡AMP
by BBC News
Share
Share

Ethiopian Kenenisa Bekele will be making his TCS New York City Marathon debut this sunday

As a four-time Olympic medalist, 16-time world champion and the second-fastest marathoner in history, Kenenisa Bekele is one of the world’s greatest long-distance runners of all-time. In 2021, he will making his TCS New York City Marathon debut.

Bekele is the second of six children and began running in primary school when he was inspired by Haile Gebrselassie. With the natural ability to accelerate very quickly at the end of long-distance races, Bekele worked his way up the junior and senior international competition circuit, ultimately winning the 10,000-meter world title at the 2003, 2005, 2007, and 2009 World Athletics Championships, in addition to the 5,000-meter title in 2009. He held both the 5,000 and 10,000 meter world records for nearly 15 years until they were broken in 2020.

In his Olympic debut at the Athens 2004 Games, he won gold in the 10,000 and silver in the 5,000, and four years later in Beijing took gold in both distances. During that time, he also won 11 gold medals at the World Cross Country Championships.

In 2014, he produced the sixth fastest marathon debut ever, winning the Paris Marathon in a course-record time of 2:05:04. In 2016, he won the Berlin Marathon in what was then the third-fastest time in history. He has also finished on the podium twice at the London Marathon. 

Bekele’s most recent marathon appearance was one for the history books, winning the 2019 Berlin Marathon in the second-fastest time ever, only two seconds off the world-record time set by Eliud Kipchoge in Berlin the year prior.

He is married to Ethiopian actress Danawit Gebregziabher and off the track owns a construction business, having built commercial buildings in the Addis Ababa and Arsi regions of Ethiopia.

(11/05/2021) Views: 446 ⚡AMP
Share
TCS  New York City Marathon

TCS New York City Marathon

The first New York City Marathon, organized in 1970 by Fred Lebow and Vince Chiappetta, was held entirely in Central Park. Of 127 entrants, only 55 men finished; the sole female entrant dropped out due to illness. Winners were given inexpensive wristwatches and recycled baseball and bowling trophies. The entry fee was $1 and the total event budget...

more...
Share

The basics, benefits and limits of altitude training

For years, altitude training has formed an important part of the training of many endurance athletes who cite it as a core part of their season. Here we break down the basic theory behind it, the difficulties athletes must overcome and the main spots to do it.

Though different definitions exist of what constitutes altitude training, we will, for the sake of clarity, consider altitudes in the region of 1500m to 3000m above sea level.

The theory behind altitude training

In simple terms, the oxygen inhaled from the air people breathe affects the energy their muscles receive to perform physical activities. Oxygen is carried around the body within red blood cells and helps the molecules in muscles perform their functions.

The higher the altitude, the lower the atmospheric pressure, which makes it harder for the body to transfer the oxygen into the blood. This is why people can often feel lethargic at altitude.  

In response to this situation, the brain triggers the increased production of the hormone erythropoietin (EPO), encouraging the body to make more red blood cells to better transport the oxygen available. This means, over time, the body begins to transport the limited oxygen better than when it first arrived at altitude.

When an athlete then returns to sea level this increased level of red blood cells, coupled with the higher atmospheric pressure, means the body is better able to transport oxygen than it was before and an athlete’s aerobic capacity is increased.

The body will, over time, return to normal levels of red blood cell production if the process is not repeated and the time taken for this to happen will vary from one athlete to the next.

How long do people train at altitude for?

It takes time for the body to adapt to higher altitude and many of the effects do not occur until after a prolonged period of time. Various studies suggest there is no increase in red blood cell count within the first seven to 10 days, meaning usually athletes choose to spend a minimum of three to four weeks at altitude.

Some athletes choose to be based at high altitude throughout the year (e.g. Boulder in Colorado, Iten in Kenya and Addis Ababa in Ethiopia), coming down to sea level for shorter periods around a racing season.

The difficulties of living at altitude

Early on in any stay at altitude individuals will likely find themselves to be lethargic as their body responds to the lower atmospheric pressure. Other side effects can include headaches and difficulty sleeping but these will often wear off as the body slowly adjusts to its new environment.

In extreme cases and at the highest altitudes (usually in excess of 3000m), severe failures to adjust can result in acute mountain sickness (AMS) with a range of possible harmful effects.

Athletes will also find it difficult to replicate the pace they are able to run at sea level because of their body’s reduced ability to transport the available oxygen.

Many will therefore choose to head to lower altitude to perform much of their more intense training. This approach is generally referred to as “live high, train low” but it is an approach only possible where different altitudes exist in close proximity.

Where do people train at altitude?

There are a number of locations where athletes choose to train across the world but some locations are particularly popular. These include Iten (c. 2400m) in the Rift Valley, home to many famous athletes including Mary Keitany and Lornah Kiplagat.

Over the border in Ethiopia, established camps exist in Sululta (c. 2700m) and in the capital Addis Ababa (c. 2355m), with products including Kenenisa Bekele and Haile Gebrselassie.

Europe plays host to a number of Alpine and Pyrenees resorts, including Font Romeu (c. 1850m) in France, and St Moritz (c. 1856m) in Switzerland.

The USA has a number of high altitude hubs, with Boulder (c. 1624m) in Colorado a huge centre of North American running as well as Flagstaff (c. 2106m) in Arizona and Albuquerque (c. 1619m) in New Mexico. 

Other locations include Mexico City (c. 2240m), Potchefstroom (c. 1378m) in South Africa, Falls Creek (c. 1600m) in Australia and Ifrane (c. 1660m) in Morocco. All locations come with their various pros and cons so it is important to research properly prior to any trip to altitude.

Are there alternatives to training at altitude?

Some athletes choose to replicate the experience of living in these locations through an altitude tent. These tents reduce the amount of oxygen within them and can be lived and slept in without the need to move location. Some see this as a less expensive and more pragmatic alternative to long trips away from home.

 

(10/30/2021) Views: 376 ⚡AMP
by World Athletics
Share
Share

Double Olympic gold medalist Derartu Tulu claims Ethiopian drug problems caused by athletes chasing quick money

Tulu has accused Ethiopian runners of chasing “quick money” and turning to performance-enhancing drugs to help them.

Ethiopia are one of seven countries currently listed as a category A nation by the Athletics Integrity Unit, meaning they considered more at risk at doping that others.

Restoring their reputation is seen as one of Tulu’s main tasks following her election as permanent President of the Ethiopian Athletics Federation (EAF) last December.

Tulu, the first black African woman to win an Olympic gold medal when she triumphed at Barcelona 1992, had been serving in the role since November 2018 following the resignation of fellow distance runner Haile Gebrselassie.

Doping products are reportedly easily available in Addis Ababa, World Athletics has warned.

Following their inclusion on the category A list, the EAF launched a major education programme among young athletes to warn them of the dangers of doping.

"In our time, we used to compete clean," Tulu told The Daily Nation in Kenya during the recent World Athletics U20 Championships in Nairobi.

"Sheer talent drove us to victory, and it was healthy competition but today the desire for quick money is pushing athletes to use drugs.

"That is why you see some athlete doing well for a short time before disappearing after few years."

Tulu’s first Olympic victory in Barcelona entered Games legend when she beat Elena Meyer in an iconic race at South Africa's first Games appearance since the end of apartheid.

Then, eight years later in Sydney, Tulu won her second 10,000m title before returning at Athens 2004 to win a bronze medal.

Tulu's victory at Barcelona 1992 saw Ethiopia win their first Olympic gold medal for 12 years.

Since then, they have won at least one gold medal in every Olympic Games.

Their best performance came at Beijing 2008 when they won a total of seven medals - four gold, two silver and a bronze.

Ethiopia only won one gold medal at Tokyo 2020 - Selemon Barega in the men’s 10,000m – along with a silver and two bronze, their worst performance since Barcelona 1992.

"Athletics is changing, and we need to change with time," Tulu told The Daily Nation.

"Many countries are coming up fast.

"We witnessed this during the 2020 Olympic Games.

"Competition has become tougher, but we are constantly trying to nurture new talents."

(08/31/2021) Views: 439 ⚡AMP
by Duncan Mackay
Share
Share

Dagmawit Amare takes over at Great Ethiopian Run

Dagmawit Amare has been appointed as the new General Manager of Great Ethiopian Run, taking over from Ermias Ayele who has been the GM for the past 11 years. Dagmawit becomes the third GM in the company’s 20-year history and the first female to lead the company.

Speaking about her appointment, Haile Gebrselassie, Patron of the Great Ethiopian Run, said: “This is a great opportunity for Dagi to lead the company. She is a very humble person, but she is also very smart. She has a wonderful gift of empowering others to do their work well. We are lucky to have her to lead us in the next phase of our work.”

Having started to work for the company 17 years ago, Dagmawit is also Great Ethiopian Run’s longest-serving employee. Over many years she has masterminded the company’s work of mobilising large numbers of participants to register for their races. As a passionate lover of Ethiopian music, she has also been instrumental in bringing live music bands to the events and two years ago worked with an Ethiopian dance group to introduce a unique dance routine as part of the participant warm-up for the international 10km.

Former General Manager Richard Nerurkar recalls how Dagmawit has also been passionate about making a success of the annual women’s run: “From her earliest years she was totally committed to seeing this race grow into what it has now become. She loves creating enjoyment for our participants. Another example of this is our annual Pasta Party which nowadays has the feel of a special Gala Dinner. But what I value most about Dagi is the way she takes care of others. For the past 17 years she has been the glue which has kept us together as a happy and successful team.”.

The same point is made by Dagim Teshome who as Operations Director has worked closely with Dagi for the past 14 years. “With Dagi, nothing she does is about herself. It’s about our races and our team. It’s about us as an organisation and about us doing something for Ethiopia.” Ruth Duncan, who has worked as part of the Event Hospitality Team for the past 17 years, said: “Dagi is the perfect person to take over the driving seat at Great Ethiopian Run. Her friendly professionalism and passion for sharing Ethiopia’s running culture have been central to the way in which our races have sent out so many positive messages about Ethiopia and its welcome to the outside world.”

Dagmawit’s popularity outside the office has also been evident in tributes made by those who know her both as a person and as an event professional. Chachi Tadesse, one of Ethiopia’s well-known singers who regularly attends races organised by Great Ethiopian Run, commented: “Dagi is a wonderful person to be around – always positive, totally committed and incredibly humble. I’m excited to see how she will lead the organisation and the new ideas she will bring to her work.” Hannah Gebreselassie, an Ethiopian sports journalist, was equally upbeat when she heard about the appointment. “I was over the moon when I heard this news. Dagi will have her own special style of leadership and will want to help others do their work well.”

(05/13/2021) Views: 503 ⚡AMP
Share
the Great ethiopian run International 10k

the Great ethiopian run International 10k

TheGreat Ethiopian Run is an annual 10-kilometreroad runningevent which takes place inAddis Ababa,Ethiopia. The competition was first envisioned by neighbors Ethiopian runnerHaile Gebrselassie, Peter Middlebrook and Abi Masefield in late October 2000, following Haile's return from the2000 Summer Olympics. The 10,000 entries for the first edition quickly sold out and other people unofficially joined in the race without a...

more...
Share

Paul Chelimo is chasing the American indoor 5,000m record this Thursday

If the Olympic silver medalist Paul Chelimo accomplishes his goal, he stands to be the first American man to run under 13 minutes in the indoor 5,000m.

The track meet is being staged by the American Distance Project with strict COVID-19 mitigation protocols, which means there will be no spectators, coaches or competitors outside the American Distance Project’s training group bubble.

The race is being held with the goal of chasing the Olympic and U.S. Olympic Trials qualifying time, as well as Galen Rupp’s seven-year-old indoor record of 13:01.26.

According to a press release on LetsRun.com, the meet will consist of just a 5,000m and a 10,000m race for both men and women, and will be held on Virginia’s new 200-metre hydraulically banked indoor track.

Athletes will also be using the Light Speed Pacing System, which is a wireless LED pacing that assists runners with setting target paces. Other athletes in the impressive field include Leonard Korir (13:15.45), and NCAA Champions Lawi Lalang (13:00.95 outdoor) and Anthony Rotich (13:31.95), among others.

Chelimo is currently ranked sixth in the world in the men’s outdoor 5,000m and owns a PB of 12:57.55, which he set in 2018. Should he achieve his goal of breaking Rupp’s indoor 5,000m American record, that will put him in the top 10 in the world at the indoor event, along with world record-holder Kenenisa Bekele (who ran 12:49.6 in 2004), Haile Gebrselassie (12:50.38 from 1999) and four other men who have run under 13 minutes in the indoor 5,000m.

In order to run under 13 minutes, Chelimo’s pace will have to be less than 2:36 per kilometre, or 31 seconds per lap of the indoor track. With that in mind, the American record is certainly a lofty goal, but Chelimo must be in good shape if he’s planning on going after it.

In a short season that has been packed with incredible performances, this would be yet another record to add to the books, and the eyes of the track world will certainly be watching on Thursday to see if Chelimo gets the job done.

(03/03/2021) Views: 483 ⚡AMP
by Brittany Hambleton
Share
Share

Abe Gashahun and Tsigie Gebreselama, winners of Great Ethiopian Run

On Sunday, the Great Ethiopian Run was held in Addis Ababa, the capital of Ethiopia, and thousands of runners showed up to compete in the 10K race. This marked the 20th running of the event, which was created by Ethiopian running legend Haile Gebrselassie.

The elite races, which featured 300 athletes, saw two close finishes, with Ethiopians Abe Gashahun and Tsigie Gebreselama taking the wins in the men’s and women’s races by one and two seconds, respectively.

In total, more than 12,000 runners participated in the race, which is reportedly the biggest African sporting event to take place since the start of the pandemic.

In 2018 Gebreselama finished in third at the Great Ethiopian Run. The year after, she upgraded to a second-place finish. On Sunday, at what was still billed as the 2020 race, she ran to the win, completing a three-year climb to the top of the podium. She crossed the line in 32:33, finishing two seconds ahead of Medihen Gebreselasie and 10 seconds in front of Gebeyanesh Ayele, both of whom are also Ethiopian. Gebreselama’s result is the fourth-fastest time in race history. 

In the men’s race, Gashahun took the win in 28:20, finishing just one second off the 15-year-old course record of 28:19. This is Gashahun’s second win at the Great Ethiopian Run, adding to his victory from 2016.

Gashahun’s fellow Ethiopians Milkesa Mengesha and Tadese Worku made him work hard for the win, and the trio battled for the top spot throughout most of the race. While Mengesha eventually faded to a 28:40 third-place finish, Worku stuck it out until the very end, falling just short of the win in 28:21. 

The run takes place at more than 2,300m above sea level, which accounts for slower results than elites would normally run. For context, 76 Ethiopian men have run faster than Gashahun’s 28:20 winning time and 118 Ethiopian women have better PBs than Gebreselama’s 32:33 result. 

COVID-19 guidelines  

While the Great Ethiopian Run hosted a shockingly large field of athletes, there were COVID-19 guidelines in place to ensure the safety of everyone involved. Firstly, the event was moved from its original November 2020 run date until Sunday to give organizers more time to prepare for a COVID-friendly race.

The next-biggest change was the reduction of the field size from the pre-pandemic cap of 50,000 runners down to 12,500. Masks were mandatory on race day (other than when on the course), all athletes had their temperatures checked before the run and the race featured a wave start to make social distancing easier during the 10K.

The call to hold the event with such a large field drew criticism from many people in the international running community, but Gebrselassie and his Great Ethiopian Run team ultimately moved forward with their event, reportedly working closely with local health experts and government officials. 

(01/11/2021) Views: 686 ⚡AMP
by Ben Snider-McGrath
Share
the Great ethiopian run International 10k

the Great ethiopian run International 10k

TheGreat Ethiopian Run is an annual 10-kilometreroad runningevent which takes place inAddis Ababa,Ethiopia. The competition was first envisioned by neighbors Ethiopian runnerHaile Gebrselassie, Peter Middlebrook and Abi Masefield in late October 2000, following Haile's return from the2000 Summer Olympics. The 10,000 entries for the first edition quickly sold out and other people unofficially joined in the race without a...

more...
Share

Three Kenyans, Solomon Boit, Evans Kipkemei and Kennedy Kimutai will battle ethiopians in Addis abba as race marks 20 years

In Addis Ababa, Ethiopia will Sunday host the 20th anniversary of Great Ethiopian Run - Africa’s largest mass participation sports event post-coronavirus lockdown - with founder Haile Gebrselassie confident the 10-kilometre road race will continue serving the greater good.

Speaking at a pre-race press conference at the Hyatt Regency Hotel in downtown Addis Ababa on Friday, Gebrselassie, a multiple world record holder in distance running, said the race will continue to make positive contribution beyond prize money.

Already, the distance running legend has built a school with proceeds from the annual race’s sponsorship with plans underway for the construction of another in partnership with the government of the Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia.

The former world record holder in the marathon and 10,000 metres also paid tribute to the great rivalry between Kenyan and Ethiopian athletes saying it helped raise the bar in African athletics.

He singled out his career-long running nemesis Paul Tergat for his contribution to the sport.

“Without Tergat the sport wouldn’t be as exciting as it is… he’s my friend and I even feel as though he’s right here with us now,” Gebrselassie, also a successful businessman said.

Tergat had been invited for this weekend’s 20th anniversary race but couldn’t travel as he is attending to his brother and other relatives who were involved in a freak road accident in Baringo County recently.

“Haile Gebrselassie, the legend, my brother, my friend and my worthy competitor in our hey days on the track, in cross country and on the roads, stands out tall for bequeathing Africa with such an incredible mass race that celebrates 20 amazing years this weekend,” Tergat wrote in a message to the organizers.

“Haile stands out as a giant, and one great role model to mankind through the way he was a success in his long professional athletics career, and by the way he has been a tremendous success also in his business undertakings after retiring from athletics.”

The Great Ethiopian Run has been forced to adjust to Covid-19 protocols that include a reduced number of runners starting the race in three separate waves to avoid congestion and to allow for greater distancing.

Three Kenyans – Solomon Boit, Evans Kipkemei and Kennedy Kimutai – are among a trimmed field of 300 elite runners who will line up at the iconic Meskel Square for the race’s start on Sunday.

(01/08/2021) Views: 715 ⚡AMP
by Elias Makori
Share
the Great ethiopian run International 10k

the Great ethiopian run International 10k

TheGreat Ethiopian Run is an annual 10-kilometreroad runningevent which takes place inAddis Ababa,Ethiopia. The competition was first envisioned by neighbors Ethiopian runnerHaile Gebrselassie, Peter Middlebrook and Abi Masefield in late October 2000, following Haile's return from the2000 Summer Olympics. The 10,000 entries for the first edition quickly sold out and other people unofficially joined in the race without a...

more...
Share

Haile Gebrselassie prepares for the 20th edition of the Great Ethiopian Run will go ahead next month with many COVID-19 precautions in place

Two-time Olympic champion Haile Gebrselassie announced on Tuesday that he and the Great Ethiopian Run (GER) organizers plan on going ahead with their race in a month’s time on January 10.

This will be the 20th edition of the 10K race in the Ethiopian capital of Addis Ababa, an event that Gebrselassie founded in 2000 after he won his second Olympic 10,000m gold medal at the Sydney Games. Gebrselassie says he and his organizing team are expecting 12,500 participants to toe the line at the January race, and they have a number of COVID-19 precautions in place to make the event as safe as possible for everyone involved. 

The GER was originally scheduled for November, but organizers decided to postpone the event for a couple of months. As explained on the event website, the GER team has used this extra time to consult with the Ethiopian Ministry of Health to create COVID-19 guidelines that will be enforced on race day. The biggest change for the upcoming run is the race capacity, which has been reduced to about a quarter of its normal size. The expected field of 12,500 is close to 30,000 fewer runners than the GER saw in 2019. This is by no means a small field, especially during a pandemic, but it is substantially smaller than organizers have seen in years past.

The week before the run, all participants will receive their race shirts along with masks, which will be mandatory on race day. Only when on the race course will athletes be permitted to remove their masks. On the day, all participants will undergo temperature checks, and organizers have asked anyone who feels unwell or is experiencing COVID-19 symptoms to skip the race. A wave start will be implemented, with groups leaving in 15-minute intervals, and runners will have to carry their own water on the course, as there will be no hydration stations on the route. Finally, an “exit flow operation” will be organized to avoid crowds at the finish line.

While Gebrselassie’s announcement was welcome news to some, many people have been critical of the call to hold the race while COVID-19 persists around the world. This has been a popular topic of debate in recent months, as more and more races have made comebacks or announced plans to return to racing during the pandemic. 

(12/17/2020) Views: 610 ⚡AMP
by Ben Snider-McGrath
Share
the Great ethiopian run International 10k

the Great ethiopian run International 10k

TheGreat Ethiopian Run is an annual 10-kilometreroad runningevent which takes place inAddis Ababa,Ethiopia. The competition was first envisioned by neighbors Ethiopian runnerHaile Gebrselassie, Peter Middlebrook and Abi Masefield in late October 2000, following Haile's return from the2000 Summer Olympics. The 10,000 entries for the first edition quickly sold out and other people unofficially joined in the race without a...

more...
Share

Derartu Tulu has been nominated to be permanent President of Ethiopian Athletics Federation

Derartu Tulu, the first black African woman to win an Olympic gold medal, has been officially nominated as the permanent President of the Ethiopian Athletics Federation (EAF).

The 1992 Olympic 10,000 metres champion has been serving as Interim President since November 2018.

Tulu stepped in when double Olympic 10,000m gold medallist Haile Gebrselassie stood down two-years into a four-year term

Gebrselassie announced his resignation, citing "irreconcilable differences", a day after a group of athletes protested in Sululta, south of the capital Addis Ababa, over a lack of facilities and services from the Federation.

Like Gebrselassie, the 48-year-old Tulu is a two-time Olympic 10,000m champion.

Her first victory in Barcelona entered Olympic legend when she beat Elena Meyer in an iconic race at South Africa's first Games appearance since the end of apartheid.

Then, eight years later in Sydney, Tulu won her second title before returning at Athens 2004 to win a bronze medal.

During a glittering career, Tulu also won the gold medal in the 10,000m at the 2001 World Championships in Edmonton and the silver at Gothenburg in 1995.

She also won the London and Tokyo Marathons in 2001 and the New York City Marathon in 2009.

Tulu, who has been nominated by the Oromia regional state, will face opposition from Tefera Mull in the election on Sunday (December 14).

He has been nominated by the Southern Nations, Nationalities and Peoples' Region.

Another of Ethiopia's Olympic gold medalist from Sydney 2000, the marathon winner Gezahegn Abera, has been nominated for the EAF Executive Board.

Belayeneh Kindie, the chief executive of the BK Business Group, one of the largest commodity trading companies in Ethiopia, has also been put forward for the Executive Committee.

(12/08/2020) Views: 517 ⚡AMP
by Duncan Makay
Share
Share

Britain's Mo Farah will race only 10,000m at Tokyo Olympics

Four-time Olympic champion Mo Farah has said he will not defend his 5,000 meters title in Tokyo next year and will focus on the 10,000m race instead as age catches up with the Briton.

Farah, 37, won gold in both events at the 2012 London Games as well as the 2016 edition in Rio and is bidding to become the first athlete to win the 10,000m three times at the Olympics.

“I’m getting on a bit and I think the key thing is to stick to one event and see what I can do,” Farah told the BBC.

“I’m definitely motivated, I’m still hungry and I still want it more. It would be history, and I’ve already made history in terms of long distance and I was the first British athlete to achieve back-to-back Olympics (gold medals).

“I have to keep enjoying it, keep smiling and I love what I do. It’s going to be hard but it is possible.”

The Tokyo Olympics, originally scheduled for this year, were postponed to July-August 2021 due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Earlier this month, Farah returned to the track after three years away to break the world record for the one-hour run.

Farah ran a distance of 21,330 meters at the Brussels Diamond League meeting to eclipse Ethiopian Haile Gebrselassie’s mark, set in Ostrava 13 years ago, by 45 meters.

(09/15/2020) Views: 619 ⚡AMP
by Ken Ferris
Share
Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games

Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games

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

more...
Share

Mo Farah has asked for pacing assistance in this weekend's P&O Antrim Coast Half Marathon

Four times Olympic champion Mo Farah has asked for pacing assistance in this weekend's P&O Antrim Coast Half Marathon which is shaping up to be the highest quality road race ever in the province.

The 37-year-old is planning for the Larne event on the back of his weekend one hour World track record in Brussels.

Farah ran a total of 21,330 metres, which beat Haile Gebrselassie's 2007 record by 45m, to seal his first ever outdoor world record.

Farah was so focused that he appeared not to realise when the hour was up and kept running before being told he could stop.

There was also a world record in the women's event as Holland's Sifan Hassan set a new best of 18.93km.

Farah has made it clear that, in Larne, he is hoping to beat his own British Half Marathon record of 59 mins 32 secs set five years ago.

In order to do so, however, he has requested help to maintain the hectic pace.

This has created an issue for the organisers as there is no-one in the current list of runners who is capable of maintaining the tough sub one hour pace alongside Farah. GB's Ben Conor is the fastest athlete with a personal best of 61.11.

A possible compromise is simply for Farah to be paced by someone for as much of the race as possible.

Either way, a new NI All Comers record is certain. The current record stands to the Klimes twins, who were joint winners of the 1986 Belfast Half when they ran 62.22.

World Championship 1,500 metres finalist Ciara Mageean will, meanwhile, race tomorrow in the Golden Spike meeting in Ostrava, in the Czech Republic.

The 28-year-old Portaferry woman will be trying to repeat her recent top form which has produced Irish records at 800 and 1,000 metres.

Elsewhere, around 400 competitors took part in the latest Eikon road races at Down Royal.

Victory in the 5k event went to Willowfield's Aaron Woodman in 15 minutes, 31 seconds. He was followed by Peter Donnelly (15.42), who was a second ahead of Foyle Valley's Darragh Crossan.

In the ladies race, North Down's Jessica Craig was a comfortable winner in 16.18. She was followed by Finn Valley's Natasha Kelly (17.46) and Omagh's Lauren Molloy (17.52).

The 10K race went to Derry's Stephen McAlary (31.50) followed by North Belfast's David Hamilton (32.47).

Lagan Valley's Caitlyn Harvey took the ladies prize in 38.00 from Newcastle's Anne Gosling (39.57).

60-year-old Tommy Hughes, of Strive Racing, dominated in the 10 miles race with a time of 54.40.

Second went to team mate Eoin Hughes (55.09), followed by Edward Cooke of Victoria Park (55.45). Sperrin's Karen Alexander won the Ladies race by four minutes in 63.49.

(09/08/2020) Views: 773 ⚡AMP
by Brian Hill
Share
MEA ANTRIM COAST HALF MARATHON

MEA ANTRIM COAST HALF MARATHON

The MEA Antrim Coast Half Marathon 2022 has been approved by World Athletics as an Elite Event. The World Athletics certified course takes in some of the most stunning scenery in Europe, combined with some famous landmarks along the route. With it's flat and fast course, the race is one of the fastest half marathons in the world. Starting...

more...
Share

Kenya's Olympic 1,500m champion Faith Kipyegon to take on Genzebe in Ostrava

After settling for another world record near-miss in the Brussels Diamond League on Friday, Kenya's Olympic 1,500m champion Faith Kipyegon is set to resume her special rivalry with Ethiopian Genzebe Dibaba at the World Athletics Continental Tour Gold meeting in Ostrava on Sept. 8.

Having finished just 17 hundredths of a second short at last month's opening Diamond League meeting in Monaco, Kipyegon seemed on track to achieve her ambition with 200 meters remaining, but faltered slightly over the final few meters to cross the line in 2:29.92.

The Kenyan now will return to her 1,500m specialty against Dibaba with hope of continuing her perfect start to Diamond League series at the Ostrava Golden Spike (Czech Republic) on Tuesday.

"I'm happy with the win, the record didn't come out as we had planned but I'm satisfied with my general performance, now I will concentrate on the next competition, the Ostrava meeting," Kipyegon told Xinhua on Saturday.

Meanwhile, Kenya's world marathon record-holder Brigid Kosgei's track debut ended in disappointment after losing the battle to The Dutch world 1,500m and 10,000m champion Sifan Hassan who went to break the World Hour record after she reached 18,930 meters as the hour elapsed, beating the existing mark of 18,517 meters set by Ethiopia's Dire Tune in 2008.

Kosgei was later disqualified for infringement after she was found to have stepped on the rail.

In the men's One Hour event, Britain's and Olympic champion Mo Farah held off the challenge of his training partner, home athlete Bashir Abdi, to set a new mark of 21,330m - eclipsing the 2007 mark of 21,285m set by Haile Gebrselassie. Abdi finished eight meters behind.

(09/05/2020) Views: 583 ⚡AMP
Share
Share

Kenyan Peres Jepchirchir smashes half marathon World Record in Prague

The Kenyan middle-distance runner had only herself to race in Prague after breaking away from the pack after 20 minutes

Kenyan runner Peres Jepchirchir has smashed the women-only race half marathon world record at the Prague 21.1KM on Saturday.

The 26-year-old clocked 1:05:34 over 16.5 laps of Letna Park’s oval course to obliterate Netsanet Gudeta’s previous best mark of 1:06:11, set at the 2018 World Half Marathon Championships.

Jepchirchir broke away from her rivals after just 20 minutes, passing 10 kilometres in 30:32. The lack of pacemakers started to show as her pace slowed in the second half of the race, but she still finished well under the previous record.

“I thank God… I’m so excited… I’m satisfied with the result although I thought I could have run 64:50, but I thank God for what He has given me,” the 26-year-old told reporters after the race.

“It was difficult to run alone. If I could have had (good) pacemakers, I could have run 64.”

This is Jepchirchir’s second world record over the distance. In 2017 she clocked 1:05:06 in a mixed-race in Ras Al Khaimah, UAE - a record which stood for just under two months.

Later at the Prague 21.1km, the men are hoping to break 58:30, a time surpassed only twice in history.

While there was no record broken in the men's race, victorious Kenyan Kibiwott Kandie did manage a Personal Best time of 58:37.

Jep chirchir’s achievement comes a day after another record-breaking event at the Brussels Diamond League on Friday 4th September, where Sifan Hassan and Mo Farah set new one hour world records.

Dutchwoman Hassan, who won 10,000m gold at last year's World Championships, covered a distance of 18.930km, while four-time Olympic champion Farah broke Haile Gebrselassie's one-hour world best to set a new mark of 21.330km.

(09/05/2020) Views: 913 ⚡AMP
Share
Prague Half Marathon

Prague Half Marathon

Start the RunCzech season with one of the biggest running events in the Central Europe! Every year the Sportisimo Prague Half Marathon excites spectators with performances of elite athletes breaking records. Enjoy a course with incomparable scenery in the heart of historic Prague that follows along the Vltava river and crisscrosses five beautiful bridges. Take in majestic views of the...

more...
Share

Hassan and Farah break one-hour world records in Brussels

Britain's Mo Farah and Sifan Hassan of the Netherlands set respective men’s and women’s world one-hour records* at the Wanda Diamond League exhibition meeting at the King Baudouin Stadium tonight.

Britain’s multiple world and Olympic champion held off the challenge of his training partner, home athlete Bashir Abdi, to set a new mark of 21,330m – eclipsing the 2007 mark of 21,285m set by Haile Gebrselassie. Abdi finished eight metres behind.

Hassan’s record also came after a titanic battle with Kenya’s world marathon record-holder Brigid Kosgei, although it later transpired the latter had been disqualified for stepping on to the infield in the closing stages.

The Dutch world 1500m and 10,000m champion reached 18,930 metres as the hour elapsed, beating the existing mark of 18,517 metres set by Ethiopia’s Dire Tune in 2008.

Moving into the final quarter of an hour, Tune’s mark seemed certain to be bettered, given that both women were more than a minute ahead of world record pace. The only question remained – which champion would secure it?

As they shadowed each other, swapping the lead but never getting away from each other, it was impossible to predict who would triumph. Hassan said afterwards that she thought Kosgei would “run away from her”.

But when the gun went to mark the final minute with the pair halfway down the back straight, Hassan moved ahead once more, and this time it was decisive.

Looking once behind her, the Dutch athlete took off, pumping her arms, going for broke. Kosgei, baring her teeth, did everything in her power to stay in touch, but there was no catching up, and when the 60 minutes elapsed, Hassan slowed to a halt halfway down the back straight after a crazy sprint finish.

"I didn't feel good before the start of the race, I even puked," revealed Hassan. "After 30 minutes of racing, I finally felt better. It was in the final 20 minutes that I gained the confidence I needed. When there were only two minutes left on the clock, the fun began. I just gave everything I had left. I am so happy with the win and the world record. It wasn't easy."

As the men’s race moved into the final quarter of an hour, the ghostly figure of the current world record holder, Gebrselassie, was shown in virtual shape, running at their side. They were bang on the pace.

With 10 minutes to go, they moved ahead of the world record schedule. They passed 18,000 metres in 50:43.

Inside the final five minutes, the home runner, who the day before had confessed that he expected Farah to beat him, moved to the lead, but the multiple champion was shadowing him still.

As advertised, the Wavelight visual pace-guidance system employing differently coloured LED lights installed on the inside edge of the track made the pursuit of records on the night immediately intelligible.

With three minutes remaining, both men were 30 metres clear of the leading blue lights, showing the intended pace, and the green lights snaking behind them, showing the actual world record pace.

A second world record appeared in the offing – and the same question was being asked. Who would break it?

The gun went to mark one minute to go, then Farah made a significant break. He charged around the bend as the final seconds ticked away, and at the same spot where Hassan had earlier triumphed, Farah did too, taking a few seconds to realise it was all over.

“The world record is yours, Mo!” said the stadium MC.

Abdi had the consolation of lowering the world best for 20,000m from 56:26 to 56:20.2*, having led his friend through that mark.

"I was very excited to be back on the track," said Farah. "I knew I was in a great shape after the hard work I did in the last six weeks. At a certain point, with just 10 laps to go, it became tough so I was happy that Bashir took the lead, but I felt great with just one minute to go. A fast last lap is still my best tactic."

Kenya’s Olympic 1500m champion Faith Kipyegon had to settle for another near miss as she attempted to beat the world 1000m record of 2:28.98 set on this track in 1996 by Russia’s double Olympic champion Svetlana Masterkova.

Having finished just 17 hundredths of a second short at last month’s opening Diamond League meeting in Monaco, Kipyegon seemed on track to achieve her ambition with 200 metres remaining, but faltered slightly over the final few metres to cross the line in 2:29.92.

Norway’s 19-year-old European 1500m champion Jakob Ingebrigtsen, who has already reduced the European record to 3:28.68, made a bold effort to improve on that but his honourable solo effort saw him finish in 3:30.69, with Jesus Gomez of Spain a distant second in 3:34.64.

In the pole vault, Sweden’s 20-year-old world record-holder Mondo Duplantis saw the last challenger, home vaulter Ben Broeders, fall away with a best of 5.70m.

The European champion then went on to clear a meeting record of 6.00m at his first attempt before having another crack at 6.15m, a centimetre higher than the best outdoor clearance ever made, by Sergey Bubka in 1994. He didn’t make it. But surely his time will come sooner rather than later.

Twenty-year-old Rani Rosius, who had won the Belgian title in 11.39, needed 11.43 to earn another prestige victory in the women’s 100m, with France’s Carolle Zahl second in 11.56.

Britain’s world heptathlon champion Katarina Johnson-Thompson had said the day before that this meeting – where she was competing in the 100m hurdles and the high jump – was effectively the highlight of her season, and she had a reasonably satisfactory result in the first of them, which was won by home champion Anne Zagre in 13.21.

Despite an uncertain start, Johnson-Thompson drew on her strength to take fourth place in 13.57 – inside her previous season’s best of 13.73.

Zagre was chased home by Denmark’s Mette Graversgaard, who clocked 13.26, and Belgian compatriot Sarah Missinne, who ran a season’s best of 13.55.

Johnson-Thompson went on to equal her season’s best of 1.84m in a high jump won by Australia’s Nicola McDermott with 1.91m.

Poland’s Iga Baumgart-Witan won the women’s 400m in 52.13, while the men’s 200m went to Italy’s Eseosa Desalu in 20.39.

(09/05/2020) Views: 598 ⚡AMP
by Mike Rowbottom for World Athletics
Share
Share

Bashir Abdi and Sir Mo Farah talk about their upcoming one hour world record attempt

When the global implications of COVID-19 were made clear in early March, the UK’s Mo Farah and Belgium’s Bashir Abdi immediately thought about their families. Abdi had just come off of a stellar performance at the Tokyo Marathon – finishing 2nd in a time of 2:04.51 to break his own national record. He then went to Belgium to spend some time with his family but was planning to return to Ethiopia for a training camp in the spring. Farah was still in Ethiopia, training through an injury and looking to find his next race. Deciding to transition back down to the track from the roads meant that he wanted to sharpen his skills a few times in the leadup to the Olympic Games.

Neither, however, had any plans to line up at the beginning of September in an empty stadium in Belgium to break a world record. But since the end of July, the two have been training in Font-Romeu, France, with the goal of breaking Haile Gebrselassie’s one hour record. On September 4, they will be chasing a distance, rather than a time, at the reimagined AG Memorial Van Damme competition.

Months earlier, in highland Ethiopia, Farah was focused on getting into some races. “At that time I wasn’t thinking anything except finding a race to test myself,” he said. “I was supposed to go leave at the end of March but so many countries were going into lockdown and I left quickly to make sure I didn’t get stuck and could get back to the UK to be with my family.”

With his four children at home due to school closures, Farah embraced the time with his family after his safe arrival. It allowed him to recover from his injury and was a welcome distraction to the Olympic Games being cancelled. He even got some of his competitive juices flowing while being a stay-at-home dad, challenging his kids and his wife to competitions like mini-triathlons, and shooting football penalties in a dizzied state.

Abdi was in Belgium but was so sure of his plans to return to Ethiopia in April, that he left many of his belongings in a house the Mudane team rents outside of Addis Ababa. Instead, he trained in the uncertainty in a much colder and damper Belgium, and was able to care for his wife before she gave birth in June. “Cancelling the Olympics was obviously sad to hear, especially after getting so much motivation from the race in Tokyo,” Abdi said. “But the most important thing is health, and it was nice to get to spend more time with my family. It would have been a difficult period welcoming in a new child and training for the Games.”

Even as they both embraced the circumstances and stayed in shape at home, the itch to compete lingered. Thus, as soon as the idea was presented to chase the record, they were in.

While in cycling, the one hour record is an oft-contested event, in running it is far more rare. Although the event has roots dating back to the mid-1800s, it never garnered comparable popularity, despite legends such as Paavo Nurmi, Emil Zatopek, Jos Hermens, and the current record holder, Haile Gebreselassie, owning impressive titles at various points.

To get the record, Farah will have to beat Gebreselassie’s distance of 21,285 meters, which he ran in 2007 at the 46th Golden Spike Grand Prix in Ostrava, Czech Republic. However, Gebreselassie had an important asset on his side, which Farah and Abdi will not: a packed stadium. Because of the pandemic, the event will be closed off to spectators. In the final meters when they are throwing down the hammer, the arena will remain still and silent.

But little phases Farah at this point in his career, whose accomplishments are too long to list. “I’ve been running since I was 12 and over the years you just learn from races what works for you and what doesn’t work for you,” he said. Obviously this is a different style of running, but he plans to employ similar tactics for this attempt. “It’s really first just about getting fit – once I’m fit enough to run under 60 minutes for a half marathon I can build smaller components from there.”

(08/28/2020) Views: 760 ⚡AMP
by Hannah Borenstein
Share
Share

Brigid Kosgei will be targeting records in Brussels

Brigid Kosgei is set to make her serious track debut at the AG Memorial Van Damme Diamond League meeting in Brussels on September 4, when she will join Sifan Hassan in attacking the one-hour world record.

Netherlands’ Hassan was announced for the event earlier this month, with the world 1500m and 10,000m champion targeting Dire Tune’s 2008 mark of 18,517km.

Now world marathon record-holder Kosgei has been added to the field as she works toward the defence of her title at the elite-only Virgin Money London Marathon on October 4.

According to her World Athletics profile, the Brussels meeting will be Kosgei’s first serious track event, with only road performances – including her incredible 2:14:04 marathon in Chicago last October – listed so far.

The 26-year-old has a half-marathon PB of 64:28 which she set when winning the Great North Run last year. Although that course is not record-eligible, Kosgei’s performance there is the fastest ever half-marathon time run by a woman.

The Kenyan’s best time for 15km is 48:54.

The meeting will also include a men’s one-hour event, with Britain’s four-time Olympic champion Mo Farah among those targeting Haile Gebrselassie’s 21,285km mark.

He will be joined by his training partner Bashir Abdi of Belgium and Norway’s Sondre Nordstad Moen.

Meanwhile, Kenya’s Olympic 1500m champion Faith Kipyegon will aim to break the world 1000m record of 2:28.98 – a mark she missed by just 17 hundredths of a second in Monaco – when she lines up at the AG Memorial Van Damme.

The women’s 1000m replaces the 4x400m mixed relay event which had originally been planned, with the Borlée brothers having decided to end their season due to “slight injuries”.

Another change to the programme is the cancellation of the triathlon which had been set to see Belgium’s Olympic heptathlon champion Nafissatou Thiam and Britain’s world gold medalist Katarina Johnson-Thompson go head-to-head in the 100m hurdles, shot put and high jump.

Thiam has withdrawn from the meeting due to injury and Johnson-Thompson will now contest just the hurdles and high jump.

According to organizers, Thiam is suffering “continuous pain at the Achilles tendons and does not want to take any risk”.

The triathlon shot put will be replaced by a women’s 100m, while Brazil’s Olympic champion Thiago Braz has been added to the pole vault field alongside world record-holder Mondo Duplantis of Sweden.

Organizers had initially hoped to be able to welcome around 9000 spectators “in a safe and secure way” but the event is now set to take place behind closed doors.

(08/28/2020) Views: 604 ⚡AMP
by Athletics Weekly
Share
Share

Adidas releases adizero adios Pro, Complete with five carbon-infused rods and LightstrikePRO midsole, this shoe doesn't actually have a carbon plate per se

Adidas announced this week that its fastest marathoning shoe yet will drop on June 30. The adizero adios Pro is the company’s newest carbon-plated shoe – with a twist.

Complete with five carbon-infused rods and LightstrikePRO midsole, this shoe doesn’t actually have a carbon plate per se.

This evolution of the adios Pro got started over a decade ago when Haile Gebrselassie shattered his own marathon world record in Berlin, running his personal best of 2:03:59, in the first version of the shoe. The protoype of this new iteration of the adios Pro made its racing debut at the 2020 Houston Half-Marathon, where the shoe was on the feet of Philemon Kiplimo and Abel Kipchumba, both Adidas athletes who finished in 59:28 and 59:35 respectively, for fourth and fifth place.

Twelve years later, the adios Pro is highly evolved and ready to take on the roads. 

Like other companies, Adidas received lots of feedback from its professional runners, who include half-marathon world record-holder Joyciline Jepkosgei and 10K world record-holder Rhonex Kipruto. Their collaboration with Adidas is how the energy rods were born.

Instead of the traditional full-slab carbon plate, energy rods are finger-like carbon sticks that move like the metatarsals in the foot. The rods are supposed to allow runners to maintain their speed for longer, optimize running economy and create less impact on the body. After all, marathoning is all about efficiency. 

The LightstrikePRO midsole is the company’s lightest and most-responsive material yet. Coupled with a carbon fibre heel plate for ankle stabilization, this shoe has some extremely innovative features that runners will be super excited to check out. At only 220 grams, this shoe will certainly be on the feet of many marathoners this fall. The adizero adios Pro becomes available in limited release on Tuesday, June 30. 

(06/27/2020) Views: 614 ⚡AMP
by Madeleine Kelly
Share
Share

Mo Farah: Briton returns to track to take on hour record

Briton Mo Farah will return to the track for the first time since 2017 in a bid to break the men's one-hour world record at the meeting in Brussels on 4 September.

The 37-year-old, winner of multiple world and Olympic titles, will aim to better Ethiopian Haile Gebrselassie's 13-year-old record of 21.285km.

European 10,000m silver medallist Bashir Abdi will line up against Farah.

Ethiopia's Ababel Yeshaneh and Birhane Dibaba will go for the women's record.

That mark of 18.517km was recorded by their compatriot Dire Tune in 2008.

The one-hour run is where athletes try to cover as much distance as possible within one hour.

Katarina Johnson-Thompson, Britain's world heptathlon champion, will look to finish higher than Olympic champion Nafi Thiam once again when they compete in a 'triathlon' contest featuring 100m hurdles, shot put and high jump.

(06/27/2020) Views: 831 ⚡AMP
Share
Share

Mo Farah is returning to the track

Briton Mo Farah will return to the track for the first time since 2017 in a bid to break the men's one-hour world record at the meeting in Brussels on 4 September.

The 37-year-old, winner of multiple world and Olympic titles, will aim to better Ethiopian Haile Gebrselassie's 13-year-old record of 21.285km.

European 10,000m silver medalist Bashir Abdi will line up against Farah.

Ethiopia's Ababel Yeshaneh and Birhane Dibaba will go for the women's record.

That mark of 18.517km was recorded by their compatriot Dire Tune in 2008.

The one-hour run is where athletes try to cover as much distance as possible within one hour.

Katarina Johnson-Thompson, Britain's world heptathlon champion, will look to finish higher than Olympic champion Nafi Thiam once again when they compete in a 'triathlon' contest featuring 100m hurdles, shot put and high jump.

(06/24/2020) Views: 609 ⚡AMP
by Athletics
Share
Share

Ethiopia’s running legend Haile Gebrselassie is helping to fight Covid-19

Ethiopia’s running legend Haile Gebrselassie took part in the final day of the virtual 5km run in Addis Ababa over the weekend.

The 47-year-old two-time Olympic 10 000m gold medalist Gebrselassie joined two current Ethiopian world champions, Muktar Idris and Netsanet Gudeta, and former world champion Gete Wami in the charity-driven event.

Gebrselassie, Idris, Gudeta and Wami took part in a “champions’ relay” over 5km to close the event which had opened on June 1, and has raised more than 100,000 Ethiopian birr (2925 US dollars) for Ethiopia’s fight against the novel coronavirus pandemic.

More than 500 participants including runners from around the world took part in the run which was organised by the Great Ethiopian Run.

The champions’ relay took place at the Addis Ababa Stadium and saw Gebrselassie teaming up with Gudeta, the 2018 world half marathon champion, against the Idris and Wami, respectively the 2019 world 5000m champion and 1999 world 10 000m champion.

Gebrselassie and Gudeta covered their 5km in 16:57.26 while Idris and Wami ran 18:56.49. The event was broadcast live in Ethiopia on Fana TV.

Gebrselassie said: “This is a difficult time not only for athletes in Ethiopia, but for the whole country. Our hope is that this race will motivate our citizens to stay fit and keep exercising while we fight the disease.”

Gebrselassie still trains daily on his treadmill at home. He has been a prominent campaigner on national media during Ethiopia’s fight against the disease. In April he featured in a campaign video to encourage Ethiopians to stay at home and practise physical distancing and spoke again on Sunday about the importance of measures to prevent the spread of the disease.

Ethiopia has reported 2156 cases of Covid-19 with 27 deaths. 

 

(06/09/2020) Views: 583 ⚡AMP
Share
Share

A look at the latest from Adidas, Adizero Pro carbon-plated shoe

Adidas has announced the release date of its commercially available carbon-plated shoe. The Adizero Pro is made of a Carbitex carbon-plate, a Lightstrike midsole (padded by a bit of Boost at the heel) and a Continental rubber outsole.

The shoe will be available to select markets on April 1, 2020 and worldwide on May 15, 2020.

Prototype versions of this shoe have been seen on the feet of four-time New York Marathon Champion Mary Keitany, 10K world record-holder Rhonex Kipruto, and even in 2008, on the feet of the former marathon world record-holder Haile Gebrselassie.

This is the first time the company is using Lightstrike in a running shoes (a TPU foam that made its debut in basketball). Adidas believes Lightstrike’s combination of stability and energy return will be appreciated by runners, especially over the full marathon distance.

The Adidas prototype that debuted at the 2020 Houston Marathon isn’t the shoe that was announced today. The all-white shoe had very subtle markings, with huge stack height and a line through the midsole, that presumably sandwiches a carbon plate.

While this isn’t the prototype that is hitting the market this spring, it could be a version of the carbon-plated shoe that we’ll see in available commercially in the fall.

Adidas joins Saucony, New Balance, Hoka, Under Armour, Brooks and Nike, which all have announced the release of their latest carbon-plated shoes this spring.

(02/13/2020) Views: 9,421 ⚡AMP
by Madeleine Kelly
Share
Share

Will the Course Records Fall For the Third Straight Year at 2020 Dubai Marathon!

It’s a good week to be a running fan and we  get an appetizer with the Dubai Marathon. Though it’s not the most historic race or the most challenging course (flat with only six turns), Dubai always cranks out fast times and sets the tone as the year’s first major (but not technically an Abbott World Marathon Major) marathon.

The names in this year fields aren’t all familiar, but the depth is certainly there again in 2020: there are 11 sub-2:08 men entered — among major marathons in 2019, only Boston (15) had more. On the women’s side, Boston Marathon champ Worknesh Degefa returns to Dubai, where she ran 2:17:41 to finish second last year, to lead a field of six sub-2:24 women. There’s also $100,000 for the win — one of the richest first-place prizes in marathoning, and life-changing money for most of these athletes.

Many athletes use Dubai as a stepping stone in their careers: show up, run a fast time, and use the performance to boost their appearance fees at major marathons. But since Dubai itself rarely offers appearance fees (outside of the years Haile Gebrselassie or Kenenisa Bekele showed up), the winner doesn’t always return to defend their title and it can be hard to predict a favorite from what is always a deep field.

This year’s men’s race is wide open. Ethiopia’s Solomon Deksisa, coming off a runner-up finish in Amsterdam, is the fastest in the field by PR (2:04:40), but seven other men have run within two minutes of his best. Realistically, any of those guys could win, but two stand out as particularly intriguing.

The first is another Ethiopian, Andualem Belay. Entering 2019, Belay had run 14 marathons, breaking 2:11 just once (2:09:59 at 2015 Dubai). Then Belay, now 27, dropped a 2:08:16 pb to win the Castellon Marathon in Spain, followed by a 2:08:51 victory in Riga and another huge PR of 2:06:00 to win Lisbon in October, breaking the course record in all three instances. That’s a pretty unbelievable breakthrough for a guy who was a relatively mediocre marathoner before last year, but after his 2019 campaign, he’s clearly among the favorites in Dubai.

Unlike the men’s race, there is a clear favorite on the women’s side: Worknesh Degefa. The Ethiopian, who won Boston last year, has raced Dubai three times and has run a PR each time: a debut 2:22 win in 2017, 2:19 for 4th in 2018, and 2:17 for 2nd last year. With reigning Dubai champ Ruth Chepngetich opting for London instead this year, Degefa is the class of the Dubai field.

While Degefa is the fifth-fastest woman of all time, only one other woman entered in Dubai has broken 2:21: Buzunesh Deba, the 2014 Boston Marathon champ who hasn’t done anything of note since finishing 3rd in Boston in 2015. Barring a major breakthrough, Degefa should roll here.

(01/23/2020) Views: 1,256 ⚡AMP
Share
Dubai Marathon

Dubai Marathon

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

more...
Share

Rhonex Kipruto breaks world 10km road record in Valencia

Rhonex Kipruto smashed the world record at the 10k Valencia Ibercaja on Sunday (12), clocking 26:24 to win the World Athletics Gold Label road race.

Sheila Chepkirui, meanwhile, ran 29:46 to win the women’s race. Her time was initially reported as 29:42, which would have been a one-second improvement on the world record, but her official time was later confirmed as 29:46, consolidating her position as the second fastest woman of all time.

Kipruto’s half-way split of 13:18 was also an improvement on the 5km world record. His second half of 13:06 was even faster, although would not be eligible for ratification.

The world 10,000m bronze medallist, still aged just 20, took 14 seconds off the yet-to-be-ratified mark set just six weeks ago by Joshua Cheptegei in the same city, albeit on a different course.

Held in the Spanish coastal city that played host to the World Half Marathon Championships in 2018, the standard of performances surpassed all expectations.

The men’s race kicked off at a brisk pace of 2:38 for the opening kilometre with a five-man group led by the main favourites: Kipruto and Benard Kimeli, Ethiopia’s Chala Ketema Regasa and Switzerland’s Julien Wanders perfectly paced by Shadrack Kosgei and Jacob Kiprop.

The 3km point was reached in 7:59 and only Kipruto, Kimeli and Wanders remained close to the pacemakers. By the fourth kilometre the pacemakers had already dropped out of the race and Kipruto was running solo as Kimeli could not live with his pace and was soon caught by Wanders.

Kipruto, the world 10,000m bronze medallist, reached the halfway point in 13:18, bettering the official 5km world record, with Kimeli and Wanders seven seconds in arrears, the Swiss breaking his own European record.

Despite running on his own for the entire second half, Kipruto increased his pace and clocked 2:37 for the sixth kilometre. After a slightly slower seventh kilometre of 2:40, the world U20 10,000m champion ramped up his speed again for the eighth kilometre, which he covered in 2:36. By then, having passed 8km in 20:11, it became clear that, barring disaster, Kipruto was going to improve Cheptegei’s world record.

Closing kilometres of 2:38 and 2:35 secured the world record for the 20-year-old Kenyan who covered the two halves in 13:18 and an impressive 13:06.

Well behind Kipruto, Kimeli and Wanders fought fiercely for the runner-up spot, the Kenyan finally prevailing, 27:12 to 27:13. Wanders’ time is a European record, improving his own mark by 12 seconds.

Only the legendary Ethiopian duo Kenenisa Bekele (26:17.53) and Haile Gebrselassie (26:22.75) have recorded faster times on the track, while Paul Tergat holds the Kenyan 10,000m record at 26:27:85.

“I’m over the moon,” said an ecstatic Kipruto, who is coached by Colm O’Connell. “When I clocked 26:46 in Prague in 2018, I set myself the target of breaking the world 10km record and today my dream came true. I’m very thankful to the organisers for relying on me to set the record and to the city and the people of Valencia for treating me so well and for their support throughout the race.”

Chepkirui leads Kenyan sub-30-minute sweep

Held at the same time as the men’s race, the women’s contest was a thrilling battle between the Kenyan trio of Rosemary Wanjiru, Norah Jeruto and Chepkirui. These three, alongside Israel’s Lonah Salpeter, travelled at a steady 2:58/2:59-per-kilometre pace to reach halfway in 14:51, perfectly on schedule to challenge Joyciline Jepkosgei’s world record of 29:43.

Shortly afterwards Salpeter lost ground and the race became a three-woman Kenyan battle with the added interest of a world record threat. It was inside the final kilometre that Chepkirui proved to be the strongest and during the long home-straight it seemed as though the 29-year-old would join Kipruto as a world record-holder, but ultimately she had to be content with a lifetime best of 29:46.

Wanjiru, who finished fourth in the 10,000m at the recent World Championships, obliterated her career best to 29:51 while Jeruto also bettered 30 minutes for the first time with 29:51. Their performances move them to equal third on the world all-time 10km list.

(01/12/2020) Views: 1,688 ⚡AMP
by Emeterio Valiente for World Athletics
Share
Share

Ethiopia’s Lemi Berhanu Hayle targets Scotiabank Toronto Waterfront Marathon Record

Many target course records and victory in the weeks preceding a major marathon, but few can achieve this glory. Ethiopia’s Lemi Berhanu Hayle, however, has the fast times and experience to do it.  

Berhanu has confirmed he will attack Philemon Rono’s Scotiabank Toronto Waterfront Marathon course record (2:06:52) on October 20th. With Rono also committed to this year’s event, plus last year’s champion Benson Kipruto, Lemi’s addition to the field sets up a compelling showdown for the CAN $30,000 first place prize and, if things go right, CAN $40,000 course record bonus.

Lemi is held in such high regard by Ethiopian selectors that he was selected to his nation’s 2016 Olympic team (he finished 13th). Earlier that year he won the 2016 Boston Marathon. But it was his victory at the 2015 Dubai Marathon in 2:05:28 - the fourth fastest time in the world that year - which introduced him as a world-beating athlete.

Though he was beaten during his Dubai title defence in 2017 he came away with a new personal best of 2:04:33, in second place. Against this backdrop a Toronto course record assault is more than viable.

"My target is to have the course record time and of course to win the race," he says adding he will ask the pacemakers to go through halfway in 1:03. It appears, too, that he is familiar with Toronto.

"I always watch the (Scotiabank) Toronto Marathon on television. I have never missed (watching) the race every year. I heard some of the things about the race from my teammates; that the course and the weather is good."

Lemi is coached by Gemedu Dedefo as part of the Demadonna Athletics Promotions group in Ethiopia. Several athletes from this team have raced in this IAAF Gold Label race over the years most notably past winners Shure Demise (2015- and 2016-women’s champion) and Derissa Chimsa the 2013 men’s winner.

Poring over his impressive competitive record with those fast times, he doesn’t have to think long to determine which of his races yielded the most enjoyment. His Boston and Rio Olympic experience are top of his mind.

"The 2016 Boston Marathon was my favorite race," he reveals. "During that time, I was in very good shape, so I easily won that race.

"As it was my first time to compete in the Olympics, I feel very proud, but I faced injury in my leg and was not in the top three. That didn’t make me to change my plan, rather, it makes me feel that I have the ability and potential next time on world stages."

Born in Asasa about 220 kilometers south of Ethiopia’s capital city of Addis he grew up to the exploits of the leading Ethiopian runners.

"I saw (Olympic champions) Kenenisa (Bekele) and Haile Gebrselassie running on TV. Their great talent inspired me to follow them. I started running school championships and, when I saw my results, I thought of continuing athletics," he explains.

In 2013 he moved to Addis to train with Gemedu and after a short time made his debut in the 2014 Kampala Marathon. He recorded his first victory at the Zurich Marathon the same year in an eye catching 2:10:40 - at age 19. Training with the group has certainly proven advantageous in several ways.

"We are all like friends with most of my teammates we go out together to some recreational areas when we have time," he reveals adding, "I married my friend and fellow athlete, Melesech Tsegaye, last year. We have no children for the moment."

With his previous earnings he has built his own house in Addis and has plans to start a business sometime in the future.

Lemi joins a strong field which includes his compatriot Abera Kuma (2:05:50 PB) and the Kenyan trio of Festus Talam (2:06:13 PB), the aforementioned defending champion, Benson Kipruto, and Canadian All-comers’ record holder, Philemon Rono.

(09/13/2019) Views: 1,317 ⚡AMP
by Paul Gains
Share
TCS Toronto Waterfront Marathon

TCS Toronto Waterfront Marathon

The Scotiabank Toronto Waterfront Marathon, Half-Marathon & 5k Run / Walk is organized by Canada Running Series Inc., organizers of the Canada Running Series, "A selection of Canada's best runs!" Canada Running Series annually organizes eight events in Montreal, Toronto and Vancouver that vary in distance from the 5k to the marathon. The Scotiabank Toronto Waterfront Marathon and Half-Marathon are...

more...
Share

Ethiopian Tigist Girma is going after the Toronto Marathon title

Tigist Girma’s best marathon time may not have caught up with her impressive competitive record but the Ethiopian is quickly establishing herself as a world-class athlete to be feared. When she lines up for the Scotiabank Toronto Waterfront Marathon on October 20, however, it will be a reality check of epic proportions.

Among the athletes she will face at this IAAF Gold Label road race are her countrywomen Bruktayit Degefa and Belaynesh Oljira who have run much, much faster times. Oljira, for instance, has a best of 2:21:53, almost five full minutes faster than Girma’s PB of 2:26:34 which she set in winning the Scotiabank Ottawa Marathon in May. However, the 26-year-old Girma remains undaunted.

“Whenever I train for a specific competition, I have the goal to win as well as to run as fast as my training partners like Roza Dereje and Ruti Aga,” she says when asked what her target might be for Toronto. “So, I will try to run fast and win the race as well.”

Her resolve to match times recorded by members of her training group is decidedly ambitious. Dereje has a best of 2:19:17 while Ruti Aga has run 2:18:34. But it is the way Girma wins that is compelling. In each of her victories she has gone to the front with more than 12-15km remaining and simply run away from athletes, many of whom have superior personal bests.

“My coach (Haji Adilo) always trains us to run following our heart and condition. So, I am not afraid of running in front,” she explains. “My victory in both races (Guangzhou and Ottawa) with new personal bests was not only because of my strength but it was also with God’s support.

“According to my condition during the race I could have run better. But I won’t complain with the results I got in both races.”

The question of whether she can outwit and outrun her compatriots remains to be seen but there is much on the line. Toronto has seen the breakthrough of many international athletes. Past winners Sharon Cherop (Kenya) and Shure Demise (Ethiopian) went on to compete in the prestigious World Marathon Majors with Cherop finishing third in Boston in 2011, six months after her Toronto victory and was Boston champion in 2012. Demise went on to finish on the podium at both Tokyo and Chicago.

Girma first emerged on the scene with a victory in the 2016 Beirut Marathon where she ran a then personal best of 2:32:44. That was on a day when the temperature at the start was 21C. More recently she won the 2018 Guangzhou and 2019 Ottawa Marathons - both IAAF Gold Label races.

It is hard to believe that she has accomplished so much considering this is just her fourth season of competition. Moreover, coach Haji has reigned in her willingness to run three marathons in a year. Toronto Waterfront will be only her second marathon of 2019. She seems pleased with her training since Ottawa.

“I train four days a week with the team with coach Haji. Right now, I am doing all the training program my coach gave me and I run 170km each week,” she reveals.

Some of Haji’s favourite sites are well outside of Addis, the capital. This is because Addis traffic is notoriously heavy and not conducive to training. Haile Gebrselassie, for example, ran on a treadmill each afternoon in the basement gym in his office building.

 “Since the training sites are quite far and it’s long drive there my boyfriend drives me up and down,” Girma says.

The unpredictable weather coming off Lake Ontario in late October should not be a problem for her. Two of her victories were in heat and humidity while in Guangzhou it was cold and raining.

“I think (Toronto) is good timing for me,” she confirms. “Since it’s now winter-time here in Ethiopia I have been training in rain and very cold weather conditions. I don't think cold weather will be problem for my result.” 

(09/10/2019) Views: 1,445 ⚡AMP
Share
TCS Toronto Waterfront Marathon

TCS Toronto Waterfront Marathon

The Scotiabank Toronto Waterfront Marathon, Half-Marathon & 5k Run / Walk is organized by Canada Running Series Inc., organizers of the Canada Running Series, "A selection of Canada's best runs!" Canada Running Series annually organizes eight events in Montreal, Toronto and Vancouver that vary in distance from the 5k to the marathon. The Scotiabank Toronto Waterfront Marathon and Half-Marathon are...

more...
Share

Sheila Chepkirui and Dorcas Kimeli, who finished just half a step behind, were credited with 29:57 performances to become just the second and third women to cover the distance in under 30 minutes at Birell 10k race

Once again, the all-time 10km lists underwent major revision at the Birell Prague 10km, an IAAF Gold Label road race, on Saturday.

In the women's race, both winner Sheila Chepkirui and runner-up Dorcas Kimeli, who finished just half a step behind, were credited with 29:57 performances to become just the second and third women to cover the distance in under 30 minutes. Only their Kenyan compatriot Joyciline Jepkosgei, who set the 29:43 world record on this same course in 2017, has run faster.

In the men's race, Geoffrey Koech fought off Mathew Kimeli in the waning stages to reach the finish line in a world-leading 27:02, equalling the legendary Haile Gebrselassie as the fourth fastest man ever. Kimeli clocked 27:07, to move up to No. 7 all-time.

The women were off to a blazing start, with Chepkirui, Kimeli and Norah Jeruto, better known as a standout steeplechase, reaching the midway point in 14:46, with Fancy Chemutai another second back. 

That group was soon winnowed down to just Chepkirui and Kimeli who fought it out until the closing metres when Chepkirui finally prevailed by about half a second.

"The second five kilometres was very hard," Chepkirui said. "I was fighting so, so hard to win this race."

Jeruto, who beat world record-holder Beatrice Chepkoech in the 3000m steeplechase at the IAAF Diamond League stop in Oslo in June, was third in 30:07.

Like the women, the leaders in the men's race set a blistering pace from the outset, with Benard Kimeli leading Geoffrey Koech, Mathew Kimeli, Bravin Kiptoo and Shadrack Koech leading the field through the first five kilometres in 13:23. Another five runners were well within striking distance, just one or two seconds behind.

The pace soon proved too much for most, with just Kiptoo, Geoffrey Koech and Matthew Kimeli left in the hunt after seven kilometres. Koech, the runner-up here last year, powered away over the final kilometre to secure the win.

"Of course there is a lot of space for improvement but still I am very happy with my result,” said the 26-year-old Koech, who clipped 15 seconds from his previous career best.

Kiptoo, 18, was third in 27:12, a world U20 best.

Earlier in the day, organisers of five leading international half marathons --the EDP Lisbon Half Marathon, the Sportisimo Prague Half Marathon, the Copenhagen Half Marathon, the Cardiff University Cardiff Half Marathon and the Valencia Half Marathon Trinidad Alfonso EDP-- announced the formation of the SuperHalfs international running series that brings the five events under one banner with the aim of promoting running, tourism and environmental sustainability in the host cities.

(09/09/2019) Views: 1,382 ⚡AMP
by IAAF
Share
Birell 10K Race

Birell 10K Race

The Birell Prague Grand Prix is a charming evening race with a mysterious atmosphere in the historical Prague city center. During the first weekend of September Prague, streets are full of thousands of runners and spectators alongside the race course. The first race is aladies only affair. The adidas Women’s Race 5 km starts on Republic Square and continues over...

more...
Share

World champion marathon Rose Chelimo and European champion 10,000 meters Lonah Salpeter are set to compete for the podium at the 32nd edition of the CZ Tilburg Ten Miles

A lot of African athletes and a large number of Dutch athletes in duels for the places of honor at the Tilburg Ladies Run 10 K.

On the Dutch side, the winner of silver and bronze at the last European Championship Susan Krumins, marathon specialist Andrea Deelstra, Ruth van der Meijden, Jill Holterman and the Dutch talent Bo Ummels. Multiple Israeli champion Selamawit Dagnachew and two Kenyan athletes Mercy Njoroge and Lilian Jelagat are also to be expected in the front.

For men who go for 10 EM, the 2004 world record 44.24 of Haile Gebrselassie from 2004 is still standing. This year, too, this time of the Ethiopian superpower on the longer distances will not die. Rather, a fascinating duel is expected between various athletes in which Khalid Choukoud, Michel Butter, Jesper van der Wielen, Mohammed Ali, Edwin de Vries, Ronald Schroer and Frank Futselaar are present on the Dutch side.

To start with, there are a large number of Belgians with Nick van Peborgh (winner Antwerp Ten Miles) and Yannick Michiels as participants with the best times at 10 EM. From England there is Jonathan Mellor, from New Zealand multiple champion Malcolm Hicks.

But the strongest opposition for Dutch athletes is undoubtedly from East Africa. Ugandan Abel Chebet, Kenyan Peter Kiprotich and Ethiopian Alem Mekonnen. It is not known what the Eritrean Filmon Ande, who has been living in the Netherlands for some time, can show in this company. Striking is the broad field that has registered of athletes who can run between 50 and 55 minutes.

(08/27/2019) Views: 2,181 ⚡AMP
by John Geerts
Share
CZ Tilburg Ten Miles

CZ Tilburg Ten Miles

The most popular part of the CZ Tilburg Ten Miles is the competition and recreation run over 10 English miles 16,092 meters. The course is IAAF certified and there are top times. For the thousands of recreational participants, enjoying the atmosphere and encouragement is on the way. An experience that you will not soon forget. ...

more...
Share

Kenyan Geoffrey Kamworor will skip the World Championships at Doha, Eyeing NYC Marathon title instead

Having said earlier this month that he intended to contest the 10,000m title in the world championships for a third time. 

Kamworor, who recently won Kenya’s national championships in the 10,000m, says he prefers to focus on the TCS New York City Marathon, which he narrowly won in 2017 over countryman and former world record-holder Wilson Kipsang. It was Kamworor’s eighth marathon. This year’s event runs November 3, which is only 10 weeks away.

Kamworor, who has also won the world half-marathon championships three times, made the announcement today, after winning the 10,000m title over Rhonex Kipruto and Rodgers Kwemoi in Nairobi yesterday. (Kipruto ran the fastest 10K time on American soil at the Peachtree Road Race in Atlanta last month in 27:01.

Kamworor was second in the 10,000m at the 2015 world championships, and sixth in 2017. The last time a Kenyan man won the 10,000m in the world championships was 2001, when Charles Kamathi took the title from Haile Gebrselassie in Edmonton.)

Sir Mo Farah of the UK has won the last three world championships, but Farah, too, has given up the track in favour of the marathon. He will race the Bank of America Chicago Marathon on October 13.

According to the announcement, Alex Oloitiptip has been selected to represent Kenya in the 10,000m in Doha.

(08/23/2019) Views: 1,282 ⚡AMP
by Anne Francis
Share
TCS  New York City Marathon

TCS New York City Marathon

The first New York City Marathon, organized in 1970 by Fred Lebow and Vince Chiappetta, was held entirely in Central Park. Of 127 entrants, only 55 men finished; the sole female entrant dropped out due to illness. Winners were given inexpensive wristwatches and recycled baseball and bowling trophies. The entry fee was $1 and the total event budget...

more...
Share

Ethiopian quartet have set their sights on breaking the recent Kenyan dominance at the BMW Berlin-Marathon

Guye Adola, who finished second in an unofficial world record debut two years ago in Berlin, as well as Leul Gebrselassie, Sisay Lemma and Birhanu Legese all possess the potential to win the BMWBerlin-Marathon.

Gebrselassie, Lemma and Legese have each triumphed over the marathon distance in the past ten months, running top-class times and all have personal bests in the region of 2:04.

“We expect a men’s race with top performances. There’s not much likelihood of a world record attempt but the times are likely to be very fast. In addition, the battle for victory could be a thrilling one that may well last until the final few kilometres,” said the race director Mark Milde, who is still recruiting more top performers.

In the past ten years Ethiopian runners have only won the men’s title in Berlin on two occasions. Haile Gebrselassie won in 2009 and Kenenisa Bekele in 2016. Otherwise Kenyans have dominated, breaking the world record four times. The most recent occasion was last year when Eliud Kipchoge ran a sensational 2:01:39 but he will not be running this year.

Birhanu Legese is the one runner among the Ethiopian quartet who has won an Abbott World Marathon Majors race this year. The 24-year-old took the title in Tokyo in March with 2:04:48 in only the third marathon of his career. In 2018 he made a spectacular debut with 2:04:15 in Dubai which put him straightaway among the marathon world-class. Even so, his time was only good enough for sixth in an extraordinarily fast race. Legese has already won one big race in Berlin, emerging as the surprise winner of the city’s Half Marathon with 59:45 in 2015.

Two more of the quartet for Berlin on September 29 were in action in Dubai 2018 and ran their personal bests there: Leul Gebrselassie and Sisay Lemma. Gebrselassie is not related to the former marathon world record holder and multiple Berlin winner Haile, but has strong credentials of his own, finishing runner-up in 2:04:02 in the race in the United Arab Emirates 18 months ago. In December the 25-year-old confirmed his ability in setting a course record of 2:04:31 to win the Valencia Marathon. In April this year he finished eighth in London’s traditionally highly competitive field.

Sisay Lemma improved his best by a big margin to 2:04:08 to finish fifth in Dubai in 2018. At the end of last October the 28-year-old produced another fine performance to break the course record in Ljubljana with 2:04:58. Three years ago he was fourth in the BMW Berlin-Marathon with 2:06:56. He marked 2015 with victories in Vienna and Frankfurt marathons.

Guye Adola has every reason to have fond memories of Berlin on his return to the race. Two years ago the 28-year-old ran an unofficial world record debut to finish second in 2:03:46 – official world records for marathon debuts are not given. He even managed to put a superstar such as Eliud Kipchoge under pressure, leading until just before 40k from the Kenyan. Since that debut the Half Marathon World Championship bronze medallist in 2014 has struggled with injuries but Adola intends to put all that behind him at the BMW Berlin-Marathon this year.

(07/23/2019) Views: 1,338 ⚡AMP
by AIMS
Share
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...

more...
Share

Mo Farah says he will almost certainly not run a track race again and said his sights are now firmly set on running the Olympic marathon in Tokyo 2020

Speaking after winning the Vitality London 10km on Monday ahead of Andy Butchart, Farah admitted that, while he had wanted to defend his world 10,000m title in Doha, he had changed his mind because it was too close to the Chicago marathon.

“I would have loved to have won more medals for my country, as well as run Chicago, but the two events are only a week apart in October,” Farah said.

“If I did Doha how much would it take out of me for the marathon? At the marathon you can’t give these guys an inch. If you are not on your A game, you will get beat.” Asked if it meant that his track dream was now dead, he nodded. “I think so, at the minute.”

The 36-year-old has changed his mind before but he accepts it is increasingly unlikely he would return to the track given he last raced there in 2017. “Whenever I watch the 10,000m guys, I speak to my coach and ask: ‘Do you think I could do that? Because I think I could.’

But at the same time you have to be smart and you have to think about not just this year but the Tokyo 2020 Olympics.”

When asked directly if he was going to run the marathon in Tokyo he said: “At the minute, yeah. The strategy is to build up in the marathon. The more marathons I do, and the more experience I get, the better chance I have of a medal.”

Farah also denied that his extraordinary row with Haile Gebrselassie had affected his performance at the London marathon when he finished a disappointing fifth. “To be honest I am kind of sick of it in a minute but I stick by every word I said. It is the truth,” he said.

“As an athlete you’ve got to put your hand up when things go well and when they don’t. I felt great, it felt good. I was running 2:03 up to 35k, then shit hit the wall, bang, I was gone. From that point my last 7k was just ‘boom’. It won’t happen again.”

(05/28/2019) Views: 1,621 ⚡AMP
Share
Tokyo Marathon

Tokyo Marathon

The Tokyo Marathon is an annual marathon sporting event in Tokyo, the capital of Japan. It is an IAAF Gold Label marathon and one of the six World Marathon Majors. Sponsored by Tokyo Metro, the Tokyo Marathon is an annual event in Tokyo, the capital of Japan. It is an IAAF Gold Label marathon and one of the six World...

more...
Share

Mo Farah and Galen Rupp are set to comeback to Chicago Marathon in October

Mo Farah appears to have ended his lengthy flirtation with a return to the track at this year’s world championships after announcing that he will instead defend his Chicago marathon title on  October.

That surely rules him out of competing in the 10,000m in Doha, given the final at the world championships takes place just seven days’ beforehand on 6 October.

Mo Farah regrets Haile Gebrselassie row but sticks ‘by every word I said’

Although there has been no official confirmation from Farah’s camp, there seems little chance of the 36-year-old flying halfway around the globe to compete over 26.2 miles on tired legs just days after a major championships.

Instead he will return to Chicago, where he ran 2hr 05min 11sec to break the European record over 26.2 miles and record his first marathon victory.

“Winning the Chicago Marathon last year was very special for me,” said Farah. “It was my first time to win a world marathon major and my time was a European and British record. I am looking forward to returning in 2019 to defend my title on the streets of Chicago. It is a fast course with good organisation. I expect they will recruit a strong field to make it a great race.”

Farah who ran 2:05:39 in finishing fifth at the London marathon last month, had hinted for months that he was considering returning to the track for the first time since 2017 to defend his world championship title over 10,000m, fuelling speculation that he would do that and then attempt the New York marathon in November.

However, a frustrating showing at the London marathon seems to have altered his plans and he will instead return to Chicago to face his former Nike Oregon Project teammate and best friend Galen Rupp. “After undergoing achilles tendon surgery following last year’s race, I have been pouring all of my energy into my recovery and returning strong in 2019,” said Rupp. “I look forward to being at my best again and giving it all I have in October.”

Meanwhile, Chicago Marathon executive race director Carey Pinkowski said he was delighted that Farah had decided to return.

“Mo is an Olympic champion and he put on quite a show here last year, and we are excited that Galen has chosen the Chicago marathon as his comeback race. I’m confident we are going to see great races up front on October 13.”

(05/09/2019) Views: 1,325 ⚡AMP
Share
Bank of America Chicago

Bank of America Chicago

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

more...
Share

Sir Mo Farah is disappointed on his performance at London Marathon

Mo Farah finished fifth in Sunday’s London Marathon in 2:05:39, three minutes behind winner Eliud Kipchoge. Farah went into the race hoping for a big result, but came away shy of his goals.

Farah fell off of the leaders at roughly halfway but maintained a strong position throughout the race. The runner told the London Marathon post-race, “I didn’t feel great at the start but I followed the pace maker.

I felt good halfway and by 20 miles a gap was there. My aim was to reel them back once the pacemaker dropped out but wasn’t able to. I am disappointed as training went well.”

When asked about the Haile Gebrselassie controversy, Farah said, “I didn’t think the fuss affected my run and I wasn’t distracted by the build up, it was all about London today and so I put my head down, did my best.”

While a 2:05:39 wasn’t exactly what he was looking for, it’s still less than 30 seconds off his personal best and European record of 2:05:11, and a fifth-place finish among one of the best marathon fields ever assembled is no joke.

In Sunday’s race, only seven months after his world record run, Kipchoge ran the second-fastest time in history over the marathon distance and became the first man to win four London Marathon titles.

(04/30/2019) Views: 1,447 ⚡AMP
Share
TCS London Marathon

TCS London Marathon

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

more...
Share

Kipchoge wins London Marathon for record 4th time while Brigid Kosgei wins the women’s race as American women finish 6th and 12th

Eliud Kipchoge of Kenya ran the second-fastest time ever to win the London Marathon for a record fourth time Sunday, and compatriot Brigid Kosgei swept to victory by almost two minutes in the women's race.

The 34-year-old Kipchoge pulled clear of Ethiopian runners Mosinet Geremew and Mule Wasihun in the final 10 minutes to complete the course in 2 hours, 2 minutes, 37 seconds on a blustery day in the British capital.

Only Kipchoge has run a marathon quicker than that, when breaking the world record in Berlin in September in a time of 2:01:39. With more twists and turns, London is typically a slower course than Berlin - making Kipchoge's display even more exceptional.

"I'm happy to win on the streets of London for the fourth time and to make history on a day that the event has raised 1 billion pounds ($1.3 billion)," said Kipchoge, who won in London in 2015, '16 and '18.

Geremew finished 18 seconds behind, and Wasihun a further 21 seconds back. Nobody has run quicker to finish a marathon in second or third place.

Home favorite Mo Farah - a four-time Olympic champion on the track - could not live with the pace, dropping away at the 14-mile mark and finishing a distant fifth at the end of a week when he was involved in an extraordinary public feud with retired distance-running great Haile Gebrselassie.

Kosgei bettered her second-place finish in last year's race by winning in 2:18:20 for her second victory in the World Marathon Majors, after Chicago last year. She ran the quickest-ever second half of a women's marathon.

Compatriot and defending champion Vivian Cheruiyot finished in a time of 2:20:14 and Roza Dereje of Ethiopia was third, 37 seconds further back.

Dan Romanchuk, a 20-year-old American, won the men's wheelchair race ahead of Switzerland's Marcel Hug. The women's wheelchair race was won comfortably by Switzerland's Manuela Schar, the 2017 champion.

In her debut at the distance, American Emily Sisson (photo) ran 2:23:08 to finish sixth at the London Marathon this morning. This is the fastest American woman time in a woman only race.  Her training partner, (photo) Molly Huddle, finished 12th in a personal best of 2:26:33.

Sisson’s time makes her the sixth-fastest American in history on a record-eligible course.

(04/28/2019) Views: 1,577 ⚡AMP
Share
TCS London Marathon

TCS London Marathon

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

more...
Share

Ethiopia’s Guye Adola, who created a sensation two years ago by recording the fastest marathon debut, is going after the Standard Chartered Dubai Marathon title

Guye Adola made his debut with timing of 2:03:46 when finishing runner-up behind world record holder Eliud Kipchoge at the 2017 Berlin Marathon.

This remains the seventh fastest of all time over the classic 42.195km distance and makes him the fastest man in the elite field.

The 28-year-old Marathon Newcomer of the Year in 2017 was leading in Berlin until around the 40km before Kenya’s Olympic Champion Kipchoge finally managed to overhaul him and win by just 14 seconds.

Adola’s debut timing makes him the second fastest Ethiopian marathon runner of all time behind Kenenisa Bekele and ahead of former world record-holder and three-time Standard Chartered Dubai Marathon winner Haile Gebrselassie. “I really enjoyed everything about my marathon debut until the last few kilometers,” said Adola, who will make his third start at the marathon distance in Dubai after withdrawing from the 2018 Frankfurt Marathon due to illness in October.

In 2014, he established a 59:06 course record and personal best at the New Delhi Half Marathon. In the same year he won a bronze medal at the World Half Marathon Championships.

“Adola certainly made a name for himself in Berlin in 2017, but injury and illness have contrived to prevent him from making further inroads in the sport,” said event director Peter Connerton. “Our event has a reputation for producing fast times and this could well be the opportunity and the venue Adola needs to re-establish himself among the world’s best,” he added.

(01/21/2019) Views: 1,705 ⚡AMP
Share
Dubai Marathon

Dubai Marathon

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

more...
Share

A strong elite men´s field is set for the Valencia Marathon this Sunday

Five men in the Valencia Marathon field have previously run better than 2:06:00 on at least one occasion headed by Ethiopia’s Leul Gebrselassie. The 25-year-old boasts a 2:04:02 lifetime best clocked last January in Dubai on his debut over the distance, barely three seconds slower than his illustrious countryman Haile Gebrselassie’s career best. He finished tenth at this year’s World Half Marathon Championships held in Valencia and holds a 59:18 personal best for the distance clocked in Valencia last year. One of his stiffest opponents should be defending champion Sammy Kitwara, who turned 32 years earlier this week. The Kenyan clocked the 2:05:15 course record last year, his second ever behind his 2:04:28 career best set in Chicago in 2014. Kitwara has only raced once this year, finishing 15th in Lisbon over the half marathon when he clocked 1:01:12. He will be joined by his fellow Kenyan Norbert Kigen, who clocked 2:05:13 in Amsterdam in 2017. He will be making his second appearance of the season after dropping out in Boston last April. Mathew Kisorio, who clocked 2:06:36 in Paris earlier this year and ran a 1:02:18 time for the half marathon in the altitude of Eldoret last month and Solomon Yego (2:07:12) will also be in contention. Eritrea's Yohanes Gebregergis, a creditable seventh at the World Championships last year, should also be tipped as one of the main favorities.  The Madrid-based 24-year-old ran 1:00:16 for the half marathon in Lisbon earlier this year and holds a PR of 2:08:14. Ethiopia’s Deribe Robi, third last year in 2:06:38, might also be a factor on Sunday in his fourth marathon this year, his best effort being 2:08:51 in Seoul. (11/30/2018) Views: 1,263 ⚡AMP
Share
Share

Haile Gebrselassie resigns as Ethiopian Athletics Federation president

Haile Gebrselassie has announced his resignation as president of the Ethiopian Athletics Federation (EAF).

The long-distance running great, who was two years into his four-year term, confirmed his decision to resign in a statement posted to Twitter on Wednesday.

“I became a president of the EAF because I wanted to do something back for my sport; athletics is my passion,” he wrote. “However, some people were making the work impossible, so it is better to leave.”

The 45-year-old had a long and successful competitive athletics career which spanned 23 years, since 1992 when he won the 5000m and 10,000m titles at the World Junior Championships. He went on to set 27 world records and 61 Ethiopian records, as well as win two Olympic gold medals and eight world titles both indoors and out.

Gebrselassie will be replaced as president by the Ethiopian Athletics Federation’s vice-president, two-time Olympic 10,000m gold medallist Derartu Tulu.

(11/16/2018) Views: 3,807 ⚡AMP
Share
57 Tagged with #Haile Gebrselassie, Page: 1 · 2


Running News Headlines


Copyright 2022 MyBestRuns.com 21,858