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Articles tagged #Kenya
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10km world record holder Rhonex Kipruto is set to make his half marathon debut in Valencia

Rhonex Kipruto, the 10km world record holder, will make his Half Marathon debut in December after being named as part of the stellar cast for the Valencia Half Marathon.

The 2019 10,000m world bronze medalist will be returning to the city in which he broke the 10km world record in January this year, running 26:24, and he hopes for second time luck in his debut over the 21km.

He will contest for the title alongside 2016 World Half Marathon silver medalist Bedan Karoki, currently training in Japan as well as compatriots Alfred Barkach, Stephen Kiprop and Kelvin Kiptum. Also named in the elite list is Ugandan Jacob Kiplimo.

Sheila Chepkirui who won the Valencia and Prague 10km runs will headline the Kenyan cast in the corresponding women’s race where she is set to compete against defending champion Senbere Teferi.

Meanwhile, Joyciline Jepkosgei will be returning to the city where she broke the Half Marathon world record in 2017, but will be going the full distance this time round.

The 27-year old comes into the Marathon elite list on the backdrop of winning the New York Marathon last year, which was also her first attempt at the full marathon. Jepkosgei seems to have some special love for Valencia as she also won a World Half Marathon silver medal there in 2018.

Peres Jepchirchir, the holder of the current women only World Half Marathon record will also be in the line up for the race as well as Fancy Cherono and Joan Chelimo.

The Ethiopian charge will be led by Azmera Abreha (2h18:33), Ruti Aga (2h18:34), Birhane Dibaba (2h18:35), Zeineba Yimer (2h19:28), Tigist Girma (2h19:52) and Mare Dibaba (2h19:52).

The men’s race will be highlighted by Boston and Chicago Marathon Champion Lawrence Cherono who will also use the race to test himself with an eye on next year’s Olympic Games in Tokyo.

Reigning world champion Lelisa Desisa and fellow Ethiopian Birhanu Legese will offer competition for the Kenyan.

The race will be held on December 6.

(09/30/2020) Views: 32 ⚡AMP
by Timothy Olobulu
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Valencia Half Marathon

Valencia Half Marathon

The Trinidad Alfonso Valencia Half Marathon has become one of the top running events in the world in its 25th year. For the second year running, Valencia is the fastest half marathon in the world. The race, organized by SD Correcaminos Athletics Club, celebrated its silver anniversary in style with record participation, record crowd numbers, Silver label IAAF accreditation and...

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Kenya's Lawrence Cherono will headline the 2020 Valencia Marathon assault

Kenya's Boston and Chicago marathon champion Lawrence Cherono will lead the 2020 Valencia Marathon assault, organizers confirmed on Wednesday.

Cherono will take on Ethiopians Birhanu Legese, holder of the third-fastest time of 2:02:48 in marathon history and Kinde Atanaw, the race defending champion and current record holder for the Valencian course in a race slated for December 6.

"I feel great that I will finally compete this year after the coronavirus shattered by season, including my Olympic debut. Now I have a chance to race before starting again on my Olympic preparations," Cherono, who was named by Athletics Kenya in their Olympic men team alongside world marathon record holder Eliud Kipchoge and world marathon bronze medalist Amos Kipruto, told Xinhua.

In the women's elite race, former world half-marathon record holder and winner of the 2019 New York Marathon winner Joyciline Jepkosgei will spearhead the event.

Jepkosgei will return to the same course she shattered the world record in 2017 in half marathon and will face up against fellow countrywoman Joan Chelimo.

Kenyan Peres Chepchirchir, the current half marathon record holder and Fancy Chemutai will also be in the frontline.

"Elite edition of the Valencia marathon and half marathon will be held on Dec. 6, we can now confirm the names of the first male and female athletes who will seek to achieve the most ambitious sporting goal possible by trying to set new race records," the organizers said in a statement.

The women will also have a strong Ethiopian presentation including Azmera Abreha, Ruti Aga, Birhane Dibaba, Mare Dibaba, Tigist Girma and Zeinaba Yimer, all the women have run the 42km race under 2:20.

(09/30/2020) Views: 16 ⚡AMP
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VALENCIA TRINIDAD ALFONSO MARATHON

VALENCIA TRINIDAD ALFONSO MARATHON

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

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2020 London Marathon is set to be the race of the year

Top two long distance runners Kipchoge and Kenenisa come face to face on October 4

Bekele is the second fastest man in the 42.2 km race London Marathon is set to be the race of the year

Almost a year to the first anniversary of Eliud Kipchoge making history by being the first human to run the marathon below 2 hours in Vienna, he is set to run his first marathon after that triumphant race.

Come next Sunday morning, on the start line will be these two men among other elite runners, as they put their enviable times on the line.  

Eliud Kipchoge holds both the world record (2.01.39) set in 2018 and a sub-2-hour personal best marathon time of 1:59.40, while Kenenisa Bekele is the second fastest man in the 42.2 km race having come two seconds shy of beating the world record in 2019.

A sub-2 hour in this race is out of question, but could we have a world record?

Considering the very elite field that will be running and the expected fast pace due to a modified course, many pundits are rooting for a world record.

Why should we fancy a world record? One just needs to look at the assembled elite field and an equally elite squad of pacemakers and will see why a record could be a possibility.

Of the 45 elite men chosen to run this race; five have a personal best time of below two hours and four minutes (2:04), eight are sub-2:05 and 11 sub-2:06.  

Without considering the times of the remaining runners, this already promises to be a very fast race.

The frosting on the cake are the eight elite pacemakers led by Sir Mo Farah and Kenya’s Victor Chumo and you have an atmosphere close to that of INEOS 1:59 Challenge; where the 41 elite pacers kept Kipchoge’s pace at a high tempo throughout.

Unlike in the INEOS 1:59 Challenge though, should the world record be broken in the London marathon, it will stand.

This is because the pacemakers will not be rotated throughout the race as they did in the INEOS 1:59 Challenge - but will be the same through the first 30 kilometers after which, they will drop out.  

Secondly, the pacers will not form a deliberate human shield around the athletes to protect them from head winds.

Lastly, the corners of the course have not been specially modified to aid the athletes as they go round them.

There is a counter argument that a world record is not a possibility. The main thrust of this argument is that the race will have very many twists and turns during the 19 laps in the 2.15km route.

The race will also be run on concrete compared to asphalt which athletes argue is softer on the knee joint.

Furthermore, if history is anything to go by, in the last 17 years, the world record has been broken seven times and all of them, at the Berlin marathon.

(09/30/2020) Views: 19 ⚡AMP
by Paul Ochieng and Gerald Lwande
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Virgin London Marathon

Virgin London Marathon

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

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World Half Marathon Champion Geoffrey Kamworor will not defend his title in Gdynia

World Half Marathon Champion Geoffrey Kamworor (KEN) will not defend his title – held since the 2014 race in Copenhagen – at the upcoming world championships in Gdynia (POL) on 17 October.

He suffered a traffic accident back in June from which he has not yet regained full fitness.

Joshua Cheptegai and Jacob Kiplimo spearhead a Ugandan team that could capitalise on Kamworor’s absence from the Kenyan squad. Both have shown impressive form this year. For Cheptegai it would be his debut at the distance.

Japan, USA, Australia and New Zealand have cancelled their participation in the championships because of the coronavirus.

(09/29/2020) Views: 34 ⚡AMP
by Helmut Winter
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World Half Marathon Championships

World Half Marathon Championships

The next World Half Marathon Championships will be held in Gdynia, Poland. It was scheduled for March 29, 2020 but was postponded until Oct 17, 2021 due to the Coronavirus. The first one was first held in 1992. The collaboration with the world half marathon championships allows the Trinidad Alfonso Foundation to continue its strategy of supporting sports events...

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Vivian Cheruiyot will be heading to London Marathon for the fourth time

Cheruiyot is on the celebrity elite list of athletes who will jet out Sunday night for the eagerly-anticipated London Marathon next weekend.

Big names will be on parade in the women’s race. Cheruiyot will be up against compatriots; world marathon champion Ruth Chepng’etich, Frankfurt Marathon champion Valary Jemeli Aiyabei, world marathon record holder Brigid Kosgei, who is also the defending champion, and debutant Edith Chelimo.

There will be special focus on the men’s race which has two of the finest athletes over the distance competing. World marathon record holder Eliud Kipchoge and Berlin Marathon champion, Kenenisa Bekele.

Cheruiyot mainly trained in Kaptagat and Eldoret. She scaled down her training schedule a bit when the race was postponed from April 26 to October 4 due to the coronavirus pandemic.

Cheruiyot told Nation Sport she was in great shape before the race was cancelled. The athlete, who spoke after a speed session at Kipchoge Keino Stadium in Eldoret, said she was disappointed when the race was put off.

“I had finished my programme and I was ready to conquer the world. If the race was to be held then, I would have been in a very good position,”  she said.

After the setback, Cheruiyot encouraged herself that things will return to normal since health was more important.

“Everyone has been affected by the virus because it is a worldwide pandemic. We are happy that athletics is opening up slowly, which is a good sign,” she said.

“My preparations for the race have been thorough for the last two months. So far, so good. I expect stiff competition on Sunday, but I am ready for the challenge ahead,” Cheruiyot said.

Asked if she is in good shape compared to 2018 when she last won the race, Cheruiyot said that she feels "much better."

“My prayer is to run well and clock a personal best. But the most important thing is to win the race. There are able competitors in the race because everyone has trained hard. I will focus on my race,” Cheruiyot said.

She said usually there is the pre-race anxiety over how the race will unfold, but she does not fear her opponents because she has prepared adequately.

“I don’t fear anybody, but there is always tension over how the big day will turn out. Every runner is good in her own right. The  thought that may stick in your head is the position you will be after the 42 kilometres race,” she said.

Cheruiyot said running in a loop will be an advantage though doing that for 42km is really challenging, but she will do her best.

“The route was changed due to the virus. I love going one way instead of running in a loop which is not hard because I have done this before in the track events.  But I will concentrate on the race. I’m aiming for good results."

Cheruiyot said that training for speed was very important because it helps an athlete prepare for anything that might come up towards the end of the race.

The athlete, fondly known as “pocket rocket”, has won many accolades in her career.

Cheruiyot started participating in international races in 1998 when she represented Kenya in the World Cross Country Championships in Marrakech, Morocco. She emerged fifth in the junior category.

Cheruiyot later switched to track events with her specialty being the 5,000m and 10,000m races where she registered mixed results.

(09/28/2020) Views: 41 ⚡AMP
by Bernard Rotich
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Virgin London Marathon

Virgin London Marathon

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

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Hellen Obiri ponders plans for Olympics and beyond

Hellen Obiri came close to walking away from the sport eight years ago.

The Kenyan, aged 22 at the time, was so disappointed with her performance at the 2012 Olympic Games, she considered quitting there and then. She had won the world indoor 3000m title earlier that year and went on to improve her 1500m PB to 3:59.68 at the start of the outdoor season, making her one of the fastest women on the startline for the Olympic final.

But she finished right at the back of the field in 12th place – later upgraded to eighth following the disqualification of four athletes from that race – and was unable to explain what had gone wrong.

Thankfully, however, she soon got over the disappointment and her career has gone from strength to strength.

She is now the only woman in history to have won world titles indoors, outdoors and at cross country. One medal is missing from her collection, though.

“I’ve won a lot but I’m not yet there,” she says. “Olympic gold is the only medal that's missing from my collection.

“At the start of the year we were training for the Olympics in 2020 but then of course we received the sad news that there would be no Olympics this year,” she added. “It’s hard to put your dreams on hold for another year when you wanted to achieve something good, but we have to be patient and train hard for 2021. The pandemic has affected the whole world. All we can do now is look ahead to 2021.”

Had the Games gone ahead this year, the 30-year-old would have been one of the big favourites over 5000m, the event in which she won world titles in 2017 and 2019. She has raced just three times on the track so far in 2020, but produced world-leading times in two of those appearances.

The 5000m at the Wanda Diamond League meeting was her season opener and she won convincingly in 14:22.12, the fourth-fastest time of her career. Just earlier this week, in a high-quality 3000m that she described as being “like a championship final”, she triumphed again in 8:22.54, the second-fastest time of her career behind the outdoor African record of 8:20.68 on the same track in Doha.

In a year with no major championships and with world rankings and Olympic qualifying suspended, performances in 2020 may not count for much. But Obiri has sent a clear message to her competitors that, even in an off year like this one, she is hard to beat. And she will be an even more formidable opponent in an Olympic year.

“I have one more race in Nairobi (at the World Athletics Continental Tour Gold meeting on 3 October), then I’ll take a break and start to prepare for the Olympics,” she said. “I hope to do even better in 2021.”

(09/28/2020) Views: 34 ⚡AMP
by World Athletics
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Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games

Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games

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

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Paul Chelimo: “Go Hard Or Suffer The Rest Of Your Life”

THE WILD CARD of the U.S. distance scene? That would be Paul Chelimo. He’s unpredictable on the track: witness his blistering 57-second opening at last year’s USATF 5000, his brutal pace for half the race, then a switch to slowish sit-and-kick tactics for the second half of what turned out to be a runner-up performance.

Chelimo can also be unpredictable—as well as funny—off the track. He had plenty of people going this spring with his social media demonstration of how to use a bathtub as a treadmill.

Then there’s his April training account via Twitter: “I drank liquid bleach and went for a tempo run, now I’m seated somewhere on the trail breathing fire… KABOMMMM!!!”

In jest? Of course. Much of the time that’s how the 29-year-old Chelimo operates. But he’s dead serious about where he’s going in this sport. It shows in his oft-repeated mantra: “Go hard or suffer the rest of your life.”

He tells us, “I’m not a perfectionist, but I like being close to perfection in everything I try to do. If I feel like I’m tying up in a workout or in a race, if I don’t go hard, then I’m definitely going to suffer. If I don’t go hard at the Olympics next year, it’s going to be tough for the sponsors to believe in me.”

Still, he has to laugh often, he says, because “I have funny things going on.” He describes one workout that happened the day after he raced at one of Winston-Salem’s Camel City events:

“I went for a long run and it was pouring rain that day, it was crazy. Luckily, I can swim, you know? I ran from the hotel because I missed the shuttle. I was running to where we usually begin our long runs. I got to like, mile 2, and I figured out, ‘Wow, there’s a reason why this year they said they were going with a shuttle.’ It turns out that where we used to cross the water, there was a lot of water, and nothing like a bridge.

“I couldn’t even jump; over the years we used to just jump over the water. And I was like, ‘Man, I’m not going to miss a long run today.’ Because if I decided to go back, that would mean I’m not going to do the long run. And by the side I saw a tree that fell across the water. And I figured I can just jump on this tree and cross. Trust me, it wasn’t a good idea.

“The next thing I saw was just red—it was dirty water. I fell in the water. My whole body. It’s a good thing I can swim. It was like 10-feet deep. I had headphones on and long-run gear and I was drowned, I was drained. I just crossed through and kept going. I met the guys and they were like, ‘How did you get here? Why are you sweating like this?’ I told them what happened and they started laughing at me. They were like, ‘Man, you’re crazy!’ When I am running, there’s a lot of stories happening.”

Chelimo always has been an interesting story himself. He came to the U.S. from Kenya 10 years ago as a recruit for NAIA school Shorter in Arkansas. After winning several national titles, he transferred to UNC Greensboro, where he was twice a runner-up in the NCAA 5000.

In ’14 he entered the Army’s World Class Athletic Program where he found an accelerated path to U.S. citizenship and started to emerge as world class. Two years later his 3rd in the Trials 5000 led to his impressive silver medal performance in Rio, with a then-PR 13:03.90. He landed on the podium again at the London Worlds with his bronze. In ’18, he ran his lifetime best 12:57.55, a mark that makes him the No. 4 American ever.

Last season, however, he didn’t run as well as he had hoped. No longer in the Army, he was competing for Nike but still working with WCAP coach Scott Simmons.

“It was a different thing,” he says, noting that the biggest change came when his wife, Brenda, gave birth to their daughter, Arianna, at the end of ’18. “She has to eat, she has to dress well, she has to get some nice stories, she has to go to school. I had to step up and properly care for my daughter.”

Arianna makes her appearance in the interview, running to her father but tumbling en route and erupting in tears. “She fell down, but she’s OK,” assures Chelimo. “When she sees me, every time she wants all the attention.” He adds, “But definitely, I was able to pick up fitness as the season went by.”

That led him to Doha, where everything went perfectly in the 5000 final, until it didn’t. “I really don’t know what happened to me,” he explains. “When we got to 400 to go, I felt like, ‘Yeah, I think I’ve got the gold this time.’ And just after that, at 300 to go, my legs started tying up; 200 to go I’m in 3rd place and I can’t even move anymore. I mean, [normally] no one can match me in the last 200m.”

Instead, he struggled to 7th in 13:04.60, more than 3 seconds away from a podium spot. “It told me I have an issue with strength,” he says. “If it gets to the point where my legs just give up, it’s time to do it a different way.” So he and Simmons revamped his training to focus on that deficit.

With almost no races this season—2 XC meets in January, 2 indoor affairs in February—Chelimo got frustrated at first, tweeting in May, “Someone find me a race before I lose my mind.” He included a photo of plants growing in his spikes.

“It got to a point.” He acknowledges the frustration, but says he got past it: “I just made up my mind. It doesn’t do any good stressing about racing. The only thing is to stay positive. When you panic, bad things happen. When I stay consistent, that’s the best thing. And trust me, I never, never go to the starting line unless I am really ready to run a race.”

His only “competition” of 2020 after winning the USATF Indoor 3000 was, yes, a triathlon of sorts, where he and his training partners battled in the long jump, shot and discus. For the record, he probably won’t be lured away from the distances after hitting PRs of 13-9½ (4.20) for the long jump, 23-8¾ (7.23) for the shot and 55-9¼ (17.00) for the discus. 

He explains that the impromptu field event competition followed a 20M (32K) long run at 9500ft (2895m) of altitude. “I’m a very competitive guy. It was good for me mentally. At first I thought it was going to be easy. When you’re on the runway, you think you’re going to jump really far, but then once you’re in the air, you start worrying about getting injured and breaking your leg.”

He says that if ’21 goes according to plan, he hopes to hit the Olympic 10K standard of 27:28.00 in the early season and tackle both of the long track races at the OT: “I’ll definitely double. The 5K comes first, which is perfect for me, because the 10K is not my main goal.”

Recall that in May ’19 he ran his first 10,000 in 8 years, scoring a PR 27:43.89 in Stockholm. That came two months after his debut half-marathon (62:19) in New York.

“At this point, I’m trying to move up in distance,” he says. “A few years down the line, I might be dropping into marathons, that is my big goal. I mean, in 2028 in LA, I’m going to be in the marathon hopefully.”

Chelimo sums up his career ambition by saying that for him, medals mean much more than records. “I feel like I was built for championship races. I have a tough mentality. It wouldn’t do me any good to break the American Record and not medal at the Olympics. My big goal is I want to peak really well for the Olympic Games. I don’t want to get distracted.

“I want to be smart and I want to be patient.”

 

(09/27/2020) Views: 79 ⚡AMP
by Track and Field News
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SARA HALL REFLECTS ON HARD WORK AND MOTHERHOOD IN BUILD UP TO LONDON MARATHON

Running At Peak Form Into Her Late 30s, Hall Continues Lifelong Pattern Of Putting In The Effort

When the future of racing in 2020 looked bleak as the COVID-19 crisis swept the world last spring, Sara Hall didn’t lose hope.

“I started training for a marathon in faith, before I knew there would be any real competitions,” said Hall, who has been eager to finally move past her heartbreaking performance from February at the U.S. Olympic Marathon Trials, where she dropped out at mile 22.

“It would have been easier just to hit the couch, but I set my mind on running a marathon, some way some how.”

Even if it meant racing 26.2 miles by herself, she said.

Ryan Hall, a two-time U.S. Olympic marathoner who retired in 2016, said his wife’s relentless competitive drive is one of his biggest challenges as her coach.

“She loves to train hard, but has a hard time taking extended breaks,” he said. “She is always ‘chomping at the bit’ to get back out there.”

When Hall heard that the London Marathon would host a highly secure, elite-only race amid the pandemic, she jumped at the precious opportunity.

On Oct. 4, she will face some of the world’s best marathoners, including defending London champion and world record holder Brigid Kosgei of Kenya and U.S. Olympic Marathon Trials champion Molly Seidel.

“Getting into the London Marathon felt like such a reward for a lot of perseverance this year — being willing to put in the work on faith alone,” said Hall, 37. “It felt against all odds to get to toe the line in a world marathon major.”

‘Against all odds’ is a familiar theme for Hall, a mother of four who has posted the fastest times of her career well into her 30s, including a 2:22 marathon last year in Berlin, where she finished fifth. Last month, with two male pacers, she ran a personal best of 1:08:18 in a half marathon along the Row River Trail in south of Eugene, Oregon, making her the sixth-fastest American woman ever in that distance.

A former Foot Locker Cross Country National Champion in high school and distance standout at Stanford University, Hall has competed at the highest levels of distance running for two decades — a great accomplishment in itself.

“It’s definitely surprised me,” she said of her longevity in the sport. “I think it’s a lot of factors, but I think the biggest are being naturally durable and learning to be really mentally-emotionally resilient.”

Ten years ago, after disappointing results as a 1,500-meter and 5,000-meter runner on the track, Hall thought her elite running career was over. She credits her Christian faith and Ryan with convincing her she had more to achieve.

Since then, she’s not only moved up to and mastered the marathon distance, she’s done it while becoming a mother to four adopted sisters from Ethiopia.

“When we adopted them, I didn’t think I’d be able to keep competing, but instead I’ve improved every year since they’ve been here,” said Hall, who is using her race in London to raise money for homeless children in Ethiopia, where she and Ryan have spent a lot of time working on various causes.

“I get to model to (my daughters) so many character aspects I want to instill in them: picking yourself up after defeat, taking risks, hard work, commitment,” she said. “Running is the greatest teacher.”

Inspired by their parents, three of the Halls' daughters have become runners. The oldest, Hana, currently a freshman runner at Grand Canyon University, won the Division 2 Arizona Cross Country Championships last fall. Hana and Mia, 16, both ran with their mom at the half marathon in Oregon.

In addition managing her kids’ remote learning and getting in her workouts, Hall has made time to discuss the racial justice movements happening across the United States.

“I’ve told my daughters about George Floyd, Ahmaud Arbery and Breonna Taylor,” she said. “We’ve discussed the movement in the U.S. and the systemic racism over the last 400 years that is the backstory to these recent events. I personally have been learning a lot.”

Despite the world’s turmoil in recent months, Hall has maintained extraordinary focus on the road ahead.

In the London Marathon, which will be held on a closed-loop course around St. James Park, she hopes to snag a new personal best and would love to finally land on the podium, after finishing fifth at the Frankfurt and Berlin Marathons.

“I’m focused on having my best marathon yet,” she said.

(09/26/2020) Views: 48 ⚡AMP
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Virgin London Marathon

Virgin London Marathon

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

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Hellen Obiri won the 3000m at the Wanda Diamond League meeting in Doha

With about 90 seconds to go in the women’s 3000m at the Wanda Diamond League meeting in Doha on Friday (25), it looked as though Hellen Obiri would register a rare defeat in the Qatari capital.

Little more than 24 hours earlier, the world cross-country champion from Kenya had explained how Doha was one of her favourite cities to race in, having set her 3000m PB here in 2014 and retained her world 5000m title last year in the Khalifa Stadium.

But when world steeplechase champion Beatrice Chepkoech breezed into the lead with about 550 metres left in tonight’s 3000m race, Obiri kept her cool for another 200 metres before she unleashed her trademark kick for home, eventually winning in a world-leading 8:22.54.

The field of 15 women, loaded with world and Olympic medallists, was paced through the first kilometre in 2:48.46. Obiri and Chepkoech were tucked behind the pacemaker with world 10,000m bronze medallist Agnes Tirop and world 5000m silver medallist Margaret Chelimo Kipkemboi also near the front of the tightly-bunched pack.

After the pacemaker dropped out at the 1600m point, Obiri led the pack and reached 2000m in 5:39.70, the pace having slowed slightly. Eight women were still in contention with two laps to go with Obiri, Chepkoech, Tirop and Kipkemboi still occupying the first four places.

Chepkoech made her move as she entered the home straight for the penultimate time, but Obiri responded with about 350 metres remaining, her head rocking and arms fighting, as is often her style at the end of races.

Tirop and Chepkoech made up some ground in the final stages, but Obiri held on to win in 8:22.54, the second-fastest time of her career behind the 8:20.68 African outdoor record she set on this track six years ago.

The next five women to cross the line were all rewarded with PBs. Tirop and Chepkoech finished second and third respectively, both timed at 8:22.92, while Kipkemboi (8:24.76) and 2015 world steeplechase champion Hyvin Kiyeng (8:25.13) were fourth and fifth. For the first time in history, seven women finished inside 8:27.

“Doha has become like a second home to me as I've won so many races here, including the World Championships last year,” said Obiri. "The season has not been the best for everyone but I am happy it is coming to an end."

(09/26/2020) Views: 42 ⚡AMP
by World Athletics
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Kenyan runner Patrick Siele banned for fleeing anti-doping staff

Kenyan long-distance runner Patrick Siele has been banned for three-and-a-half years for fleeing from anti-doping officials who were trying to collect a sample, the Athletics Integrity Unit (AIU) said on Thursday.

Siele is the latest in a long line of Kenyan athletes to be sanctioned in recent years, including 2008 Olympic 1,500m champion Asbel Kiprop, former Boston and Chicago Marathon winner Rita Jeptoo and 2016 Olympic marathon champion Jemimah Sumgong.

Former 1,500 metres world champion Elijah Manangoi, who is also from Kenya, was provisionally suspended in July for missing three tests under the whereabouts rule.

The AIU global disciplinary body said in a statement that Siele ran away from anti-doping personnel and an independent witness confirmed he "hurdled a fence to escape from the compound" in Kapsabet in west Kenya on Dec. 18 last year.

His sanction has been backdated to March 16, 2020.

Siele's ban was initially set for four years but was reduced by six months after he "promptly admitted the violation".

"The AIU... agreed to a six month reduction in the sanction, taking into account... that this was his first experience of out-of-competition testing and his relative lack of anti-doping education which may have contributed to his error of judgment on the day," the AIU said.

Siele, who clocked 2hr 10 min and 42 sec in the Shanghai Marathon last year, is not one of the world’s elite, but his ban is another embarrassment for Kenya.  This brings the total to 66 runners banned now.  

(09/25/2020) Views: 59 ⚡AMP
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Venice Marathon will go forward with just two Runners, one man and one woman

Instead of the usual 5000 runners this year's Venice Marathon will only have two, one man and one woman. Under an initiative announced by race organizers yesterday called "Venicemarathon One for All," one male and one female runner will be chosen at random from the field of 5000 entrants to run the famous course from Villa Pisani Museo Nazionale, through the Piazza San Marco, to the finish at the Giardino della Marinaressa. Because of the pandemic, the remainder of the field must run virtually.

"During this hard time we worked in close and continuous contact with local authorities, health institutions and FIDAL (the Italian Federation of Athletics) to try and organize the event this year as our tradition saw in the past," said marathon president Piero Rosa Salva through a statement. "Unfortunately, the strong concern for an epidemiological situation still in progress, especially abroad, forced us, with great regret but with a necessary sense of responsibility, to recognize the impossibility of managing in health safety the events which involved last year about 30,000 people including athletes, school children, volunteers, police forces and professionals."

The marathon's 5000 registrants may run virtually, from October 24, to November 1. But the two in-person participants will "have the opportunity to run for all athletes," on the official race day of Sunday, October 25, organizers said. Those runners will have a full escort of vehicles "that will assist them along the race course, guaranteeing their safety," according to the organizers. There will be a live video stream of their run.

There will also be a start-as-you-please 10-K in the nearby Parco San Giuliano where runners can complete a marked race course anytime between 9:00 a.m. and 6:00 p.m. and get an official time. The park is near the 30-K mark of the marathon course, and 10-K runners can possibly get a glimpse of the two marathoners when they go by.

The Venice Marathon is widely recognized as Italy's best fall marathon. The course records were both set by Kenyans: 2:08:13 by John Komen in 2009 and 2:23:37 by Helena Loshanyang Kirop in 2011. Last year's winners, Tesfaye Ambesa Lencho of Ethiopia and Judith Korir of Kenya, each earned 5000 euros in prize money plus time bonuses.

(09/25/2020) Views: 59 ⚡AMP
by David Monti
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Venice Marathon

Venice Marathon

The Venice Marathon is one of the most beautiful marathons known for the historical, artistic and picturesque surrounding in which it takes place. It starts in Stra, a small village located at about 25 km west of Venice, at the beginning of the Riviera del Brenta, a beautiful area near the River Brenta, where the rich and noble Venetians built...

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Kenya’s Geoffrey Kamworor is in doubt of defending his world half marathon title for the fourth consecutive time on October 17 in Gdynia

Geoffrey Kamworor is not certain if he will compete after returning to training late, having recovered from injuries sustained from a freak accident on June 25 this year.

The world half marathon record holder was hit from behind by a speeding motorcycle, sustaining injuries on his head and above the ankle.

The 27-year-old Kamworor had to be operated on at St Luke's Hospital in Eldoret.

“I am not quite sure if I will run since I returned to training late owing to the accident,” said Kamworor, who resumed light training towards the end of July.

According to Dr Victor Bargoria, who treated Kamworor, the diagnosis was to open incomplete right tibia shaft fracture, knee bruises and scalp laceration.

“The procedure was debridement of contaminated soft tissue and loose bone fragments followed by irrigation and wound closure,” he explained after attending to the star at St Luke's Hospital.

The athlete who trains at the Global Communications camp in Kaptagat was targeting his fourth consecutive world half marathon title after 2014 Copenhagen, 2016 Cardiff and 2018 Valencia.

It’s in Copenhagen where Kamworor sealed his hat-trick with a championship record time of 59 minutes and 08 seconds, breaking Zersenay Tadese’s 2009 Birmingham’s winning time of 59:35.

Kamworor won the race in Valencia in 2018, beating Kenyan born Abraham Naibei Cheroben of Bahrain and Eritrean Aron Kifle to second and third places respectively.

 

Kamworor rolled out a world record when he claimed the Copenhagen Half Marathon in 58:01 in September last year, crushing the previous time of 58:23 set by Tadese in Lisbon in 2010. Another Kenyan Abraham Kiptum broke the record in 2018 Valencia but the time has been expunged for doping.              

Kamworor would go on to seal his double at the New York City marathon in November last year after his 2017 exploits but his dream of a hat-trick this year has been curtailed after the event was cancelled due to Covid-19 pandemic.

Kamworor and World half marathon bronze medallist Pauline Kaveke were picked early March this year to lead Team Kenya for the 24th edition of the World Half Marathon that was planned for March 29 in Gdynia but postponed to October 17 due to Covid-19 pandemic.

Athletics Kenya will now have to rethink about the team selection after Kaveke and Victor Chumo, who is also in the team, were picked to pace at the London Marathon on October 4 this year.

The men’s team also had Kibiwott Kandie, who is fresh from winning the Prague Half Marathon in a course record and fourth fastest time in history over the distance of 58:38 on September 5.

Kandie, the national cross country champion, also won the Ras Al Khaimah (RAK) Half Marathon in February in the United Arab Emirates.

(09/24/2020) Views: 61 ⚡AMP
by Ayumba Ayodi
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World Half Marathon Championships

World Half Marathon Championships

The next World Half Marathon Championships will be held in Gdynia, Poland. It was scheduled for March 29, 2020 but was postponded until Oct 17, 2021 due to the Coronavirus. The first one was first held in 1992. The collaboration with the world half marathon championships allows the Trinidad Alfonso Foundation to continue its strategy of supporting sports events...

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Kenyan Nancy Jelagat will be one of the pacemakers in the London Marathon

Family Bank Half Marathon champion Nancy Jelagat, a pacemaker in the London Marathon, is looking forward to a great race and much-needed experience as she prepares to  venture into full marathon running in the future.

Jelagat is tasked with pacemaking for the third set of athletes whose target time is 2hours:29minutes:00. 

The athlete is optimistic of delivering results in her assignment, which she says is a new dawn in her career.

Jelagat, who has never been a “rabbit” before, wants to do a good job so that she can move up the ladder and set the pace for the leading set of athletes in a major marathon race.

With the London Marathon less than two weeks away, Jelagat has stepped up training in the face of challenges posed by the coronavirus pandemic.

The runner, who has been training in Iten, Elgeyo Marakwet County, said she is grateful for the opportunity to feature in a major competition after several months on uncertainty owing to the virus.

The upcoming athlete is raring to go. She said: “I’m covering every area in training. This is my first time as a pacemaker, therefore, I need to be fit. The main participants in the race depend on the pacemaker.  As a first timer, I am also going to learn,” Jelagat said.

She hopes to participate in many more races as she lays ground to plunge into marathon races.

“It’s an honor to be named as one of the athletes who will be participating in London Marathon. Initially, I had other plans for the two seasons, but they were ruined by coronavirus. But life is more important than competitions,” Jelagat said.

“I will use the race to weigh my performance. I don’t want to be just any other marathon runner. I want to be among the world beaters.”

After victory in the Family Bank Half Marathon last year, Jelagat competed in the Boulogne-Billancourt Half Marathon in France and won the race in 1:08:24. Ethiopia’s Beyene Medhin was second after timing 1:08:38 and another Kenyan, Deborah Samum, was third in 1:09:55.

Jelagat also won the Standard Chartered 10km road race after clocking 32:03 ahead of Delvine Meringor who timed 32:06 as Beatrice Chepkemoi sealed the podium places in 32:49.

Last year, Jelagat enjoyed good results and she looks forward to even better performance.  She said: “Indeed, it has been a long journey. When the virus struck, I continued training even after I sustained a hamstring injury. I didn’t stop training so that I can heal faster. I’m happy that I healed quickly, I’m now as fit as a fiddle,” Jelagat said.

The runner said she chose to train in Iten because of the condusive  environment. She said: “Despite lack of training facilities, I chose Iten. It is also a favorite for other athletes. The conditions are good to prepare for any race.”

(09/23/2020) Views: 61 ⚡AMP
by Bernard Rotich
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Virgin London Marathon

Virgin London Marathon

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

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World champions Timothy Cheruiyot and Conseslus Kipruto are planning to raise the bar in the 800m and 1,500m respectively at the Doha Diamond League meeting on Friday

The world and Olympic 3,000m steeplechase champion Kipruto, who missed the opening leg of Diamond League series in Monaco in August after testing positive for COVID-19, will return to action after shaking off the virus.

However, the 25-year-old Kipruto will be competing in an unfamiliar event in Doha, when he takes on compatriot Brimin Kipruto, Vincent Kibet and Bethwell Birgen in the men's 1,500m event.

"I am glad to have been declared fit to compete after missing the opening leg of the series. I am also excited to compete in the 1,500m, I am really looking forward to running the shorter distance on Friday," Kipruto, who boasts a personal best of 3:39.57 in the 1,500m told Xinhua on Tuesday.

Cheruiyot, the world 1,500m champion, will race over 800m. The 24-year-old has a personal best of 1:43.11 in the event from August 2019 during the Kenyan national championships in Nairobi.

He clocked an impressive 3:28.45 to win the 1,500m in Monaco, just four one-hundredths of a second outside his lifetime best.

Cheruiyot will contest the event with fellow Kenyans including the world 800m bronze medalist Ferguson Rotich and Commonwealth Games 800m champion Wycliffe Kinyamal.

Both Kinyamal and Rotich boast personal bests of 1:43.12 and 1:42.54 respectively in the 800m.

"It's good to try other events, but I haven't run an 800m event outside Kenya and I will be happy to register good times and compete against the events specialist," Cheruiyot told Xinhua.

There will be an exciting lineup in the women's 3,000m. The event will consist of Kenyan quartet Hellen Obiri and Beatrice Chepkoech, 2019 world champions over 5,000m and 3,000m steeplechase respectively, in addition to Olympic 3,000m steeplechase silver medalist Hyvin Kiyeng, and world 5,000m runner-up Margaret Chelimo.

The world 10,000m bronze medalist Agnes Tirop of Kenya will also spice up the 3,000m event.

After running 2:29.15 for the 1,000m in Monaco, narrowly missing the world record in the process, Kenyan Faith Kipyegon, the Olympic 1,500m champion will return to her specialty, the 1,500m.

(09/22/2020) Views: 51 ⚡AMP
by Xinhua News
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Kenenisa Bekele and his thoughts about Eliud Kipchoge

The coronavirus lockdown has been a bitter-sweet experience to Kenenisa Bekele, the world’s most decorated distance runner of all time.

The 38-year-old superstar from Bekoji in the Ethiopian Rift Valley has experienced the ebb and flow of an elite career, a regular customer on and off the injury list, worst of which was a calf rupture in 2010.

That’s why he brushes aside the fact that the pandemic subjected athletes to training in isolation.

This is a situation that he’s accustomed to, having endured various injuries in his stellar career that forced him to retreat, knock himself into shape before rejoining the fray.

NN Running Team:

“This (training alone during the coronavirus lockdown) was not new to me. I had some bad injuries in my career and during those times I had to train alone to come back to good performance,” he told Nation Sport in an exclusive interview.

Bekele, who owns a resort and private, synthetic track in Sululta on the outskirts of Addis Ababa, along with various other real estate investments, is in the same management as his Kenyan rival Eliud Kipchoge.

Both run in the NN Running Team colours under the Global Sports Management camp, the branchild of former Dutch distance running record holder, Jos Hermens.

Managed out of Nijmegen in The Netherlands, the NN Running Team is also home of Kenya’s half marathon world record holder Geoffrey Kamworor and a galaxy of other wold beaters.

On October 4, Hermens will be in an awkward position when Bekele and Kipchoge clash at the London Marathon, at a time both are enjoying a stellar career on the roads, and are separated by just two seconds, in terms of personal best times over the 42-kilometer distance.

World record:

In 2018, Eliud Kipchoge shattered the world marathon record in winning the Berlin Marathon in Two hours, one minute and 39 seconds.

Just 12 months later, Bekele responded by completing the distance in 2:01:41, on the same Berlin streets, despite struggling with discomfort in the first half of the race.

Bekele’s brilliant second half (negative splits) convinced many that he could, perhaps, upstage Kipchoge.

Their eagerly-awaited duel was plotted for April 26, but the London Marathon was shelved as Covid-19 struck, prompting organizers to postpone the duel to October 4.

A great ambassador:

Now with the new big day just 14 days away, Bekele has nothing but respect for Kipchoge, appreciating the Kenyan’s contribution to athletics.

“I have great respect for Eliud,” he said during the interview from Addis Ababa.

“We have been competitors for a long time. He is a great ambassador for our sport and I respect him a lot.”

The October 4 London Marathon will be an elites-only race with no mass runners or spectators due to precautions over the coronavirus.

The 40th anniversary race will also see the elite races take part on a closed-loop circuit around St James’s Park, with the athletes staying in a hotel outside of London which has been chosen for its 40 acres of grounds where athletes will be able to train during race week.

Bekele says racing against Kipchoge and other top elites on October 4 gives him added motivation.

“It gives me great motivation, to run in one of the greatest marathons in the world against the greatest athletes. I give myself pressure, I want to run my best race.”

“Running world records is not easy and difficult to predict what is possible. But seeing Kipchoge’s sub-two performances, we know anything is possible,” he said.

“I had to adapt my training programme with some more alternative training, like on the bike and gym training to remain fit with my team supporting me as usual,” said Bekele who loves spending time with his family when free.

The shifting of the big race from April to October is the least of his worries.

“I was well prepared for the London Marathon in April but as an athlete you need to be ready and flexible, so I focused on October and went on with my training.

(09/21/2020) Views: 101 ⚡AMP
by Bernard Rotich
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Virgin London Marathon

Virgin London Marathon

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

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Kenya’s Nicolas Kimeli won the men’s 10,000m at the Gouden Spike meeting in Leiden

Kenya’s world 5000m finalist Nicolas Kimeli won the men’s 10,000m at the Gouden Spike meeting in Leiden, clocking a world-leading PB of 26:58.97.

The 21-year-old, contesting his first 10,000m race in three years, ran alongside compatriot Solomon Kiplimo Boit during the early stages, passing through 3000m just inside 8:12. Kimeli broke away from Boit just a couple of laps later and set off in pursuit of a sub-27-minute time.

Kimeli’s lead grew with each lap, while Boit continued running in no-man’s land. Further behind, Dutch runner Mike Foppen, making his debut over 10,000m, gradually detached himself from the main chase pack.

Kimeli forged on and started to sprint on the final lap when he realised a sub-27-minute performance was a possibility. He crossed the line in 26:58.97 to smash the meeting record by almost half a minute.

Boit finished second in 27:41.10, while Foppen placed third in 27:59.10. It was Foppen’s eighth PB of the year, having set two at 1500m, one at 2000m, two at 3000m, plus national records for 5000m and 5km.

As is tradition at this meeting, a golden spike trophy is presented to the top performer of the night. Unsurprisingly, Kimeli scooped that accolade.

Meanwhile, Menno Vloon won the pole vault with 5.76m, the second-best clearance of his career after his 5.85m national record in 2017. World champion Toshikazu Yamanishi stepped down in distance at the Japanese Inter-Corporate Championships in Kumagaya and won the 5000m race walk with an Asian record of 18:34.88.

Yamanishi had Eiki Takahashi, Tomohiro Noda and Satoshi Maruo for company in the early stages, but he gradually dropped them one by one before going on to win by almost 17 seconds. Takahashi finished second in 18:51.25.

Yamanishi’s winning time took four seconds off the previous Asian record set by Yusuke Suzuki back in 2015, just three months after he set a world record over 20km.

In a high-quality men’s 10,000m race in Netherlands, 2015 world U18 champion Richard Kimunyan emerged the winner in 27:01.42, finishing just one second ahead of Bernard Koech (27:02.39) with Bedan Karoki a close third (27:02.80). Kimunyan’s time was a world lead but lasted just eight hours at the top of the world list before it was bettered in Leiden.

(09/21/2020) Views: 45 ⚡AMP
by World Athletics
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President Uhuru Kenyatta's gift, Kipchoge library project

With the London Marathon just over two weeks away, defending champion and world record holder Eliud Kipchoge maintained his tight programme on Wednesday, making time for the ground-breaking ceremony for a library project that he inspired.

He was joined at the ceremony at Kapsisiywa Secondary School in his home Nandi County by Education Cabinet Secretary George Magoha.

The project has been funded by President Uhuru Kenyatta.

The marathon great narrated that at a meeting in Mombasa last year President Kenyatta asked him what gift he wanted after his exploits on the world stage, and he settled for a communal library.

“I'm here to witness one of my dreams come true. My vision to transform my community has come true courtesy of the President.

“I appreciate the President's gesture which confirms to me that, indeed, no human is limited," said an elated Kipchoge who was accompanied by his family.

Kipchoge said it came as a big surprise to him when the President made the offer.

“The answer is what we have here today,” Kipchoge said, noting that a library is crucial and that reading had expanded his thinking and outlook in life.

“Books have been my loyal friend. Books are the perfect mode to travel out of any locality through. Books have helped me navigate through many challenges in life. I'm happy the President will be with us in every step of the way in this project,” added Kipchoge, with his usual touch of philosophy.

President Kenyatta last year issued a directive for the construction of a multi-million library at Kipchoge’s home village of Kapsisiywa.

“Eliud Kipchoge who is alive and here with us has also inspired the world that no human effort is futile, that we can dream and make our dreams a possibility. He has demonstrated that through integrity, hard work and commitment to excellence nothing is out of reach,” said the President when he honoured the athlete last year after his successful exploits in Austria when he broke the two-hour barrier for the marathon.

President Kenyatta decorated Kipchoge with the Elder of the Order of the Golden Heart (E.G.H) award, lauding his work in inspiring future generations to achieve the seemingly impossible.

Magoha, accompanied by Ministry officials, on November 22 last year delivered the offer letter from the President to the famous athlete as well as the Kapsisiywa Secondary School principal.

Kipchoge made history last year after becoming the first man to run a marathon in under two hours – clocking one hour, 59 minutes and 40 seconds at the “Ineos 1:59 Challenge” staged in Vienna, Austria.

(09/19/2020) Views: 55 ⚡AMP
by Wycliff Kipsang & Tom Matoke
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Strong European Field for Mattoni Ústí nad Labem Half-Marathon, celebrating its tenth edition on Saturday

This weekend's Mattoni Ústí Half-Marathon in the north of the Czech Republic near the German border will feature a strong European elite field, organizers announced today. The race celebrates its tenth edition on Saturday.

The women's field includes Eva Vrabcová Nývltová, the 2018 European Championships bronze medalist in the marathon, who is coming back to competition after giving birth to a baby girl, Adela, in 2019.

Unlike many road races which were postponed this year, the Mattoni Ústí nad Labem Half-Marathon is being held on its normal date. Last year's race had 2351 finishers, but this year should have fewer finishers due to COVID restrictions. The course records are Men, 59:14, by Kenya's Barselius Kipyego in 2017 and 1:07:17 by Peres Jepchirchir, also from Kenya, in 2015.

The elite start lists are as follows.

MEN -Said El Otmani (ITA) 1:01:31 (Verbania, 2019) Alejandro Jimenez (ESP) 1:03:05 (Valencia, 2019) Jirí Homolác (CZE) 1:03:23 (Prague, 2017) Alberto Sanchez Pinilla (ESP) 1:03:39 (Puerto de Sagunto, 2020) Bohdan-Ivan Horodyskyi (UKR) 1:04:43 (Kovel, 2019) Vít Pavlišta (CZE) 1:05:09 (Prague, 2016) Emmanuel Roudolff-Levisse (FRA) 1:05:22 (Lille, 2019) Robert Míc (CZE) 1:07:23 (Ústí nad Labem, 2017) Azeddine Habz (FRA) debut Jakub Zemaník (CZE) debut Sebastian Hendel (GER) pacemaker for women’s race

WOMEN -Fatma Maraoui (ITA) 1:10:08 (Cremona, 2011) Eva Vrabcová Nývltová (CZE) 1:11:01 (Prague, 2018) Ekaterina Korneenko (BLR) 1:12:45 (Poznan, 2019) Marcela Joglová (CZE) 1:13:46 (Kostenice, 2020) Kristina Hendel (GER) 1:14:02 (Berlín, 2019) Ivana Sekyrová (CZE) 1:14:06 (Pardubice, 2013) Cecilia Mobuchon (FRA) 1:14:16 (Sevilla, 2020) Nuria Lugueros Diaz (ESP) 1:15:11 (Madrid, 2019) Tereza Hrochová (CZE) 1:15:59 (Kostenice, 2020) Barbora Jíšová (CZE) 1:18:51 (Prague, 2018) Tereza Jagošová (CZE) 1:25:08 (Olomouc, 2018)

(09/18/2020) Views: 84 ⚡AMP
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Mattoni Usti nad Labem Half Marathon

Mattoni Usti nad Labem Half Marathon

Enjoy the urban run at the Ústí Half Marathon. The course leads alongside the river Elbe opening a view to impressive rock formations, Strekov castle and then crossing the area of a chemical factory which is a perfect example of industrial architecture of the First Republic. The Ústí nad Labem Half Marathon is an annual half marathon race which takes...

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Epic clash at London Marathon this year, but with lower prize money

Top athletes will earn less in this year's London Marathon as effects of Covid-19 continue to hit the sports world.

Organisers of the October 4 race say the prize money has been cut by nearly half of what was offered last year.

With only 17 days to the 40th edition of the London Marathon, the announcement comes as a shocker for marathoners who are just returning to the sport after months of heavy lockdowns.

Interestingly, for the first time there will be a separate prize pool for the best performing British athletes for the London clash that will present the scintillating clash between the world’s fastest marathoners - Kenya's Eliud Kipchoge and Ethiopia's Kenenisa Bekele.

The elite men’s race will see one of the most eagerly anticipated clashes in marathon history with Kipchoge going head-to-head with Bekele, the man who came within two seconds of his world record last year in Berlin.

 

(09/18/2020) Views: 77 ⚡AMP
by Stephen Rutto
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Virgin London Marathon

Virgin London Marathon

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

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Why young Kenyan Sandra Chebet cannot wait for London Marathon?

It’s baffling that, at just 22 years of age, Sandrafelis Chebet has fallen in love with road running.

Ideally, one would expect her to gain some track experience from the middle distance to the 10,000 meters before hitting the asphalt.

The dearth of Kenyan talent in the 5,000 and 10,000 meters, with just Hellen Obiri to bank on, means Kenyan coaches needed to have enticed the likes of Chebet to work on the track, hoping to stop the potentially dangerous streak by Dutchwoman Sifan Hassan that could threaten Kenya’s gold medal hopes at the Tokyo Olympics next year.

Nonetheless, the 2015 World Under-18 Championships silver medalist in the 2,000 meters steeplechase hopes that her enlisting to pace the women’s lead group at next month’s London Marathon will motivate her to bigger things.

Chebet has been tasked with pacing for the lead group of women in London who include world record holder and defending champion Brigid Kosgei, world champion Ruth Chepng’etich, 2018 champion Vivian Cheruiyot, Frankfurt Marathon champion Valary Aiyabei and debutant Edith Chelimo.

Nation Sport caught up with Chebet at Lemotit Athletics Camp in Londiani, Kericho County, where she said her featuring in a major marathon will help improve her performance.

“I’m lucky to have been selected as one of the ‘rabbits’ who will be pacing for the lead group in London,” she said.

“It’s a tough task, but I will do my best to make sure I deliver good results,” said Chebet who is under the Italy-based Rosa Associati management, the same stable as Kosgei and Chepng’etich.

Chebet admitted that when the coronavirus struck, everything came to a standstill and with the closure of training camps, she decided to continue her training following the guidelines from the ministry of health of social distancing.

“It was tough training in a group of three or less but I’m happy because I was not discouraged knowing that the virus will be contained and competitions will resume.

“I went on with my training and with the big assignment ahead, I will do what I can to deliver,” she said.

She praised her training partner Beatrice Chebet, who is also the World Cross Country Championships’ junior title holder, for her assistance in speed work session.

“Beatrice has been of great help to me because she has good techniques in finishing which is good for an athlete, and I have been always ready to listen from her,” added Chebet who has a half marathon personal best time of 68:14.

Still only 22, Chebet looks forward to graduating to the full marathon in future and believes that pacing the best athletes in the world in London gives her the much needed drive.

She looks at it as a learning experience.

“I have participated in various half marathon races and by next year, I will be shifting to the full marathon where I want to register my name as one of the best in the distance, but I have to start slowly before becoming a world beater,” she added.

She said her mentors are Kosgei and Cheruiyot who make her work hard as she seeks to venture into marathon races and build up from there.

With silver medals at the World Under-18 Championships (steeplechase, Cali, Colombia), Africa Under-20 Championships (5,000m, 3,000m, Tlemcen, Algeria) and a 3,000m bronze at the Africa Under-20 Championships (3,000m, Addis Ababa), Chebet hopes to graduate to become the golden girl of distance running.

(09/17/2020) Views: 106 ⚡AMP
by Bernard Rotich
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Virgin London Marathon

Virgin London Marathon

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

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Victor Chumo will be the lead pacesetter at the London Marathon

Pacesetters are the unsung heroes in athletics.

Theses are the men and women who set up the main contenders in a race for first finishes and records, besides the titles.

Marathon races, run over two hours require meticulous planning, disciplined pacing and tactical awareness.

Enter pacesetters, who, as the name suggest, are used to pace the contenders through the required time lines on the way to a world record, meet record, course record attempt, as the case may be.

The dynamics at the London Marathon that will be held on October 4 will be no different.

The race has attracted easily two of the fastest marathon runners in the history of athletics, Kenya’s Eliud Kipchoge, and Ethiopia’s Kenenisa Bekele.

Kipchoge needs no introduction. He is the world record holder, reigning Olympic champion and reigning London Marathon champion.

Bekele is the reigning Berlin Marathon champion, his winning time of 2 hours 01 minutes 41 seconds last year just two seconds shy of Kipchoge’s world record of 2:01:39.

Of course Kipchoge has run faster, 1:59:40- during the Ineos 1:59 Challenge in Vienna, Austria last October.

Victor Chumo was one of the runners who paced Kipchoge to that historic feat. Chumo is indeed a high profile pacemaker.

Nation Sport caught up with Chumo, who is one of the pacesetters tasked with leading the athletes in the London Marathon next month through their splits in the 42 kilometres race with a fast finish the clear objective.

The other Kenyan pacesetters for the London race are Noah Kipkemboi, Eric Kiptanui, Alfred Barkach and Shadrack Kimining.

Kaptagat-based Chumo also paced Kipchoge in his earlier failed mission to run a sub two hours marathon in Monza, Italy in 2017.

“I’m privileged that I have been selected to pace for some of the best athletes in the world. It is a hard task given that the athletes will always depend on the pacemakers during the race but I’m ready for the task because it’s not my first time to help top athletes run fast times,” said Chumo.

In fact, pacing Eliud Kipchoge in his first attempt to break the 2-hour marathon barrier in a project dubbed “Breaking2”, and sponsored by Nike, was Chumo’s first major assignment as a rabbit.

He trained hard for the assignment and was as disappointed as Kipchoge when the mission failed.

Kipchoge missed the magical barrier by only 25 seconds, after running 2:00:25.

Chumo joined Global Sports Communication stable in May 2019 and here again he was chosen among 41 pacesetters in the Ineos 1:59 Challenge that saw Kipchoge become the first and only man to run a marathon in under two hours.

“Pacing Eliud in the Ineos 1:59 Challenge was one of my best experience in my athletics career and I will remember that day for the rest of my life, he says."

(09/15/2020) Views: 90 ⚡AMP
by Bernard Rotich
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Virgin London Marathon

Virgin London Marathon

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

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Kenyan Ruth Chepng'etich, is the world champ that trains without coach

Ruth Chepng’etich kept postponing the interview but it was quite understandable considering the Covid-19 contagion in the country.

There have been no sporting activities in the country since March this year after the government instituted measures to curb the spread of the novel coronavirus following the first case in the country.

By Saturday, Kenya had reported 35,969 cases with 22,771 recoveries and 619 deaths from the disease.

We checked into Vapor ground, Ngong, Kajiado County, where she had directed us and found her warming down after her morning workout in readiness for the delayed London Marathon due on October 4.

The diminutive athlete was alone.

On a normal day, Vapor ground could be teeming with elite and the not so serious athletes going through their paces.

Though well-kept, the place looked like a ghost arena...thanks to Covid-19 restrictions on social gatherings and social distancing.

Only a handful of athletes were working out separately at the venue but observing strict Covid-19 guidelines.

Well, many top athletes whether in athletics or other sporting disciplines can barely perform without the input of a coach.

They will go to greater lengths to hire or take along their coaches to major championships so that they reap the benefits of the “second eyes” to the maximum.  

Majority of professional athletes have made it big after aping or getting inspired either by family members or friends, who were great sportsmen or women in a particular event.

However, there are always unique cases where some sportsmen and women are self-made right. Some have gone on to perform well at the highest level without a coach.

Chepng’etich is one of them.

The only time she had a coach, briefly, was when she was still in Kericho before shifting her base to Ngong in Kajiado County in 2015, a move that would toss her into a roller coaster of athletics achievements.

She has never thought about engaging a coach since setting foot in Ngong, an area that has produced some of Kenya’s top athletes like World 5,000m champion Hellen Obiri.

It would sound strange but self-coaching and group training are what have unleashed the best in the 26-year-old Chepng’etich and the best is yet to come through.

Within four years of moving to Ngong, she already has a world title and is ranked the fourth fastest women in marathon history, an accomplishment most female athletes can just but dream about.

(09/14/2020) Views: 105 ⚡AMP
by Ayumba Ayodi
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Three-time London Marathon champion Mary Keitany Predicts Winner of the London Marathon

Three-time London Marathon champion Mary Keitany won't be at the starting line when this year's race blasts off near The Mall on October 4.

One of Kenya's greatest women marathon runners ever won't be in the elite-only field tackling the 19.6 laps of the 2.12-kilometre loop course crafted in a "biosecure bubble" orchestrated by the coronavirus pandemic.

As the athletes power down Horse Guards Road onto Birdcage Walk, Spur Road past the iconic Buckingham Palace and back to The Mall, Keitany won't be in the mix.

And she will be missed in the final, extra 1,345 metres to the finish line...

"Many are wondering why I'm not in the line-up this year, but I had been invited for the Boston Marathon race which I later cancelled due to an injury.

"The race has been postponed to next year and I have enough time to prepare because this will be my debut in the race," she told Nation Sport.

"One has to prepare well and you can't predict a race up to the last few kilometres because anything can happen with your body."

"A good example is the Boston and Chicago marathon where we saw athletes competing in a group up to the last 50 metres when Lawrence Cherono won both races in a sprint finish," she explained.

"When I broke the (women's only) world record in 2017, we just started the race in a high pace with my pacemaker, and by the time the other athletes reacted, I was very far and that's how I won the race.

"Even elite athletes have pressure during training and before the race starts, but for me that disappears when the race starts and I have to get focused to the finish line."

"Many athletes will hang on until the 35km mark where they will start dropping," she added.

Her prediction for the men's race on October 4 is that Eliud Kipchoge will carry the day, but that it will be a tight race.

 

(09/11/2020) Views: 94 ⚡AMP
by Bernard Rotich
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Virgin London Marathon

Virgin London Marathon

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

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Kenya has experienced far fewer coronavirus deaths than other countries with similar infection rates and no deaths in last 48 hours

(Many of the top runners in the world are Kenyans. Hundreds of these runners make their living running races, winning prize money and having sponsors.  Right now because of COVID-19 many of these athletes are barely surviving. The good news is that few Kenyan runners have gotten COVID-19 and as far as we know no elite runners have died from the virus. Let's look at the overall scene in Kenya as compared to the rest of the world.)

In March, Kenya was bracing for coronavirus. Duncan Nyukuri, an infectious disease physician at Kenyatta National Hospital in Nairobi, was listening to reports coming in from China and Italy with trepidation. “Our healthcare infrastructure is not as good as in those areas,” he said, and even as Kenya implemented strict lockdown policies, it wasn’t clear how the country would cope.

Six months on and, while Kenyans aren’t quite breathing a sigh of relief, many are cautiously optimistic. “It’s better than what I feared initially,” says Nyukuri. The majority of Kenyans who get coronavirus—around 80%, according to health cabinet secretary Mutahi Kagwe—seem to be asymptomatic. And Kenyans seem to be dying of coronavirus at far lower rates than elsewhere in the world.

Officially, 599 people have died of coronavirus in Kenya. The true total is likely higher, as the country’s testing capacities are limited, especially in rural areas. But it’s still a strikingly small proportion of official case counts: less than 2% of the 35,356 I people who have tested positive for coronavirus. This figure is distinct from the mortality rate, since many cases are never diagnosed. But still, Kenya’s numbers stand apart: Coronavirus infected 272,912 people in Italy, according to government figures, and 13% died, creating a death toll of 35,507.

Coronavirus antibody testing in Kenya puts the country’s relatively low number of deaths in even starker context. Immunologists from the KEMRI-Wellcome Trust Research Program in Kilifi, Kenya tested 3,174 people across the country from the end of April to the middle of June, and found that 5.6% tested positive. “We estimate that 1 in 20 adults in Kenya had SARS-CoV-2 antibodies during the study period,” wrote the authors in their paper, which has not yet gone through peer review but was published as a preprint in July. And yet, by midway through the survey, Kenya had only reported 71 deaths from coronavirus—far lower than the number of deaths reported globally in countries with similar levels of antibodies.

If the survey’s results accurately reflect Kenya’s overall infection rate, then 2.5 million Kenyans had coronavirus in that period. According to the World Health Organization’s conservative estimate of a 0.5% morbidity rate, that many infections would have resulted in around 12,500 deaths. Even factoring in the likelihood that official testing hasn’t captured the full impact of coronavirus, Kenyan hospitals simply aren’t reporting the number of patients expected given national antibody levels.

“Our peak is not as overwhelming as we thought it would be,” says Anne Barasa, an immunologist at the University of Nairobi who works at Kenyatta National Hospital. “At my hospital, the majority who test positive are asymptomatic. We’re not overwhelmed by those with severe disease.”

The reason for Kenya’s low death count is unclear. “Coronavirus is a new disease and there’s a lot of unknown. We are still speculating,” says Nyukuri. But Kenyans’ youthfulness is likely a major factor. Half of the population is younger than 20, and only 4% are 60 or older, according to a report from the United Nations University World Institute for Development Economics Research.

So far, coronavirus has predominantly affected cities in Kenya, particularly Nairobi and Mobassa. These areas are filled with particularly young demographics. “Most of our older population are in rural areas, as people tend to go back to rural areas when they retire,” says Nyukuri. Keeping older people apart from their younger relatives and support networks during lockdown created its own problems, including food scarcity, but it could well have protected them from infection.

Other possible theories for Kenya’s low number of deaths, including whether medications and vaccines for other conditions could help prevent severe effects, are still being investigated. HIV, unexpectedly, doesn’t seem to increase the likelihood of severe Covid-19 infections. Barasa says it’s possible that antivirals taken for HIV provide a broadly protective effect. Close to a million people, around 2% of the population, are on antiviral HIV medication.

“There’s talk that BCG [bacille Calmette-Guerin tuberculosis vaccine] and oral polio vaccines could be protective, but India has the same vaccines,” says Barasa. Kenyans could have also boosted their immune systems from exposure to other, less deadly, strains of coronaviruses, though again this theory is unproven. “There’s research being developed, but we don’t have a lot of hard evidence,” says Barasa.

No explanation can be definitively ruled out. Genetics could be a factor, says Barasa, while some speculate that Kenyans’ exposure to sunlight and resulting high vitamin D levels could somehow help. Nyukuri is less certain of this last theory: “In the US and India it’s summer and they still have these cases,” he says. “Unless our sunlight is different.”

As in the rest of the world, Kenya’s epidemic is far from over; Nyukuri says he saw between 20 and 30 coronavirus patients in the past two weeks, and the country’s healthcare system can struggle even if severe symptomatic reactions remain relatively low. Elsewhere in Africa, several other countries report similar low mortality rates to Kenya. Scientists are still unraveling why coronavirus has had a less severe effect on some countries compared to others. When they do determine a cause, the answers could help other countries bolster their defenses.

(09/09/2020) Views: 189 ⚡AMP
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Impressive victories by Jacob Kiplimo, Christian Taylor and Faith Kipyegon at the Golden Spike, a World Athletics Continental Tour Gold meeting in Ostrava

Kiplimo’s track break-out:

In the men’s 5000m, the 19-year-old Kiplimo fought off Selemon Barega in a fierce homestraight brawl to take the win in 12:48.63, one of seven meeting records to fall on a clear night in this eastern Czech city where 3000 spectators were allowed entry to Mestsky Stadium to help celebrate the meeting’s 59th edition.

Just 3:30 into the race it was Barega, running behind pacer Lamecha Girma, who looked to be in control. With four laps to go he was already all alone and well ahead of the sprawled out pack.

“I wanted the fast time so I kept on pushing,” said Kiplimo, the silver medallist in the senior race at last year’s World Cross Country Championships. “It was a fight in the home straight. And it was wonderulf.”

It was also the first big-meet victory for the teenager. More are likely on their way.

Strong, solo Kipyegon:

Faith Kipyegon produced a powerful performance to take the 1500m in convincing fashion.

Controlling the tempo from the 800m point, the Olympic champion pulled away for good with some 250 metres remaining, with Laura Weightman briefly giving chase. Kipyegon clocked 3:59.05, a season's best and another meeting record.

Weightman, who was briefly passed by Jemma Reekie as they approached the final bend, overtook the Scot in the homestretch to finish second in 4:01.96 with Reekie further back in 4:03.25.

Taylor triples 17.42m world lead:

In typical fashion, Christian Taylor produced the goods in the final round to win the triple jump, reaching a world-leading 17.46 in the final round to steal the win from Hugues Fabrice Zango, who controlled the competition since the second round when he jumped 17.42m. 

Taylor needed time to find his rhythm, shaking off a pair of back-to-back modest efforts with a 17.12m jump in round three. He didn’t produce another measured jump until his last. 

Warholm dominates:

Two-time world 400m hurdles champion Karsten Warholm extended his unbeaten streak to ten with a convincing 47.62 victory, another meeting record.

It wasn’t quite the follow-up he was expecting after his stunning 46.87 European record in Stockholm where a clip of the final hurdle dashed his world record ambitions there. This time, he chopped his stride badly as he approached the ninth barrier, but if he was disappointed, he hid it well.

“It’s always nice to get a win, but I was a little surprised by the time to be honest,” said Warholm, who was flown to Ostrava on Sunday on a private jet.

“I had a little stutter step, I had to switch (lead legs). There was nothing dramatic about it, I just had to do a switch. But that probably affected my time. Everything that breaks your rhythm is going to impact your finish time.”

Ludvy Vaillant of France was second in 49.14, a season’s best.

Hassan out-sprints Chelangat:

Sifan Hassan, Sheila Chelangat and Yasemin Can waged a strong battle in the women’s 5000m, but through it all, Hassan, the world 1500m and 10,000m champion, was just biding her time. That came, she decided, with about 300 metres to go, when she pulled past Chelangat and ran off down the backstretch and eventually to a convincing 14:37.85 victory. 

Chelangat, who took care of much of the pacesetting chores, was second, passing Can in the waning stages to clock in 14:40.51, a career best for the 22-year-old Kenyan. Can, running in her first race on the track this year, was next in 14:40.70.

800m wins for Muir and Wightman:

Laura Muir was again the class of the field in her event, this time the 800m, turning in a solid 1:58.84 victory. Poland’s Sofia Ennaoui, who was second to the Scot in the Silesia 1500m on Sunday, was second again in 2:00.82.

Jake Wightman took down a solid field in the men’s race in 1:44.18, a career best for the 26-year-old who's better known for his 1500m exploits. The performance lopped a hefty sum from his previous best of 1:44.61 set two years ago.

(09/09/2020) Views: 56 ⚡AMP
by World Athletics
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Kenyan Kibiwott Kandie shines at the Prague half marathon

Kenya Defence Forces’ Kibiwott Kandie won the 2020 Prague men’s Half Marathon in 58 minutes and 38 seconds on Saturday morning.

It was a largely lone affair for the soldier after he broke away from the Kenyan-dominated field at the 10km mark under a hot atmospheric condition.

“It's difficult to run alone,” said Kandie whose performance makes him the fifth fastest man over the distance with the sixth fastest performance of all-time.

Kandie staged a good run early in the year, winning the Ras Al Khaimah Half Marathon in February with a world-leading 58:58, six days after his triumph at the fiercely competitive National Cross-Country Championships. But then the Coronavirus pandemic staggered his momentum. In March, Kandie was also named to the Kenyan team for the World Athletics Half Marathon Championships.

“My wish is to run again when this pandemic is over. It will be a pleasure to continue competing,” he added.

Kandie’s performance relegated Philemon Kiplimo to second place with a time of 59:56 as Benson Kipruto came in third in 1:00:06.

Making it to the top 10 finishers were Amos Kurgat who clocked 1:00:20 for the fourth position, Felix Kipkoech was fifth in 1:00:40 and Timothy Kibet stopped his timer on 1:00:47 for the sixth place. Others are Benard Kimeli who timed 1:01:00, Abel Kipchumba (1:01:02), Bravin Kipkogei (1:01:23) and Alfred Chelal (1:01:32).

(09/07/2020) Views: 85 ⚡AMP
by Michezo Africa
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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...

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Adidas, ASICS and Nike boost anti-doping programme ahead of road running return

World Athletics’ road running season will recommence this month with an improved anti-doping programme thanks to the financial support of three major shoe companies.

The Athletics Integrity Unit (AIU) revealed that Adidas, ASICS and Nike have agreed to inject money into the Road Running Integrity Programme, meaning more than 300 platinum and gold label athletes will be monitored and tested during the coming season.

The 2020 schedule is due to resume on Sunday (September 6) with the Vidovdanska Trka 10km and is set to feature the Virgin Money London Marathon on October 4 – the same day as the Kosice Peace Marathon in Slovakia.

Last year, the AIU reached an agreement with the Abbott World Marathon Majors which pledged to provide additional funding for intelligence-led anti-doping investigation and testing programmes.

The Road Running Integrity Programme has been expanded this year with contributions from other key stakeholders of the road running community – the organisers of all Label races, athlete representatives and the three shoe companies.

More than 350 out-of-competition tests were carried out by the AIU during the first three months of the year.

But due to the decreased number of races in 2020 following the COVID-19 outbreak, the programme has been adapted.

"When we put together this programme, we had no forewarning of how disruptive the coronavirus pandemic would be to the road racing calendar this year," Brett Clothier, head of the AIU, said.

"Despite the very many other challenges this has created for Label races, agents and shoe manufacturers, not least financially, we’re delighted that these funding contributors remain committed to this anti-doping programme.

"Race cancellations have allowed us to reduce the annual budget in these exceptional circumstances and make smaller demands on some of our contributors than they initially agreed but even the directors of cancelled races have been willing to continue making some contributions to a programme that will protect the integrity of their events in years to come.

"We are pleased that these three shoe companies also recognise that this programme is crucial to the health of the sport, both ethically and commercially, and are willing to support it.

"Their collaboration will allow us to build an even stronger integrity platform for 2021, when we hope that the sport can resume on a more normal footing."

Jon Ridgeon, chief executive at World Athletics, added: "The cooperation that we are seeing between the different commercial stakeholders, including some of the shoe companies, to support the integrity of our sport, is an important development for the future of road racing and I would like to thank them for their commitment."

One of the key features of the programme for 2020 includes an overall registered testing pool of 305 athletes with the majority of those believed to be from Kenya and Ethiopia.

The top 40 runners (20 male and 20 female) are set to be tested in accordance with an advanced intelligence-led testing programme that is appropriate to their 2020 racing calendar.

The remaining 265 athletes will be subject mainly to group testing specifically for the purpose of establishing their athlete biological passport (ABP) profile.

The AIU, in conjunction with the two National Federations and the National Anti-Doping Agencies in Ethiopia and Kenya, is also expected to support educational activities across the 305 athletes, utilising digital resources, leaflets, virtual conferences and face-to-face seminars, when and where they are safe to conduct, for the remainder of the year.

"This approach is a practical response to the unique circumstances we currently face with regards to road running," Clothier added.

"There was clear feedback from the key stakeholders, that, despite the financial difficulties, the sport does not want to raise the white flag on anti-doping and when the sport does return to a more normal level of competition in the future, it should be with a strong integrity platform still in place."

 

(09/06/2020) Views: 73 ⚡AMP
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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: 68 ⚡AMP
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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: 129 ⚡AMP
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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...

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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: 65 ⚡AMP
by Mike Rowbottom for World Athletics
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Kenya commits to new World Athletics' anti-doping program

Kenya is backing World Athletics' (WA) new testing program that was launched on Tuesday targeting top road runners in marathon, half-marathon and long distances.

With the running calendar slowly resuming amid global COVID-19 setbacks, WA's anti-doping watchdog Athletics Integrity Unit (AIU) is stepping up measures to increase testing of athletes in Kenya. 

Kenya which currently has laws to criminalize doping in the country, has been embroiled in doping scandals involving its top runners.

Some of the country's top athletes serving sanctions for the doping offices includes 2008 Beijing Olympics 1,500m champion Asbel Kiprop, 2016 Rio Olympics women's marathon champion Jemimah Sumgong, and former three-time Boston Marathon champion Rita Jeptoo, among others.

"We have been informed that the AIU is going to organize a number of group testing sessions specifically for road runners. The sessions will be held at a number of locations across Kenya during September," the country's athletics running governing body Athletics Kenya said in a statement on Thursday.

"Athletics Kenya is providing them with all the required logistical support for a smooth and safe conduct of these activities in line with health guidelines of our government. We are hundred percent committed to supporting the AIU in its aim of protecting the integrity of our sport," it said.

The group testing sessions will include some advance-notice testing, where the main focus will be on building the profiles of athletes for the Athlete Biological Passport (ABP) program.

The samples collected from these athletes will be used to establish the initial values for their ABP profiles before regular non-notice target testing resumes on a much more extensive basis in 2021.

(09/04/2020) Views: 74 ⚡AMP
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World marathon record holder Eliud Kipchoge given the power to read

Ancient Greek philosopher Plato once said: “Books give a soul to the universe, wings to the mind, flight to the imagination, and life to everything.”

And with the elite-only October 4 London Marathon basically down to a battle of mental strength, Kenya’s defending champion Eliud Kipchoge has always stressed the importance of training the mind. There couldn’t be a better way to do this than read, read and read.

That’s why a consignment of books to Kipchoge’s Kaptagat training camp on Wednesday, courtesy of Sports Cabinet Secretary Amina Mohamed, couldn’t have come at a better time.

Last year, while on a visit to Kipchoge’s Global Sports Communications camp, CS Amina promised to help equip the camp’s library to keep athletes busy after training. The books eventually arrived and were handed over to Kipchoge by Kenneth Boit on behalf of the CS.

Resumption of sports

“My training is going on well, although this time it was different from what we are used to due to the Covid-19 pandemic whereby all camps were closed and I have been training alone," said Kipchoge.

The Olympic champion and world record holder is looking forward to the resumption of sports saying many athletes are suffering because almost all competitions were cancelled.

"We look forward to resumption of sports because this is what athletes depend on and it has been hard for many of them to put food on the table. Competition is slowly coming back and we hope things will normalise soon and the virus shall be contained,” said Kipchoge.

(09/03/2020) Views: 74 ⚡AMP
by Bernard Rotich
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Peres Jepchirchir and Sheila Chepkirui are set to clash in Prague

When it became clear that it wouldn’t be possible to hold the Birell Grand Prix in Prague, organisers of the World Athletics Gold Label road race set about creating an alternative event. After much planning, RunCzech has been given the green light to stage the Prague 21.1km, an invitation-only elite half marathon on a looped circuit in Letna Park in the Czech capital on 5 September.

Thirty-five of the world’s best road runners will be in action on Saturday morning, running 16-and-a-half laps of the 1280m course. The men’s race will start at 6:20am local time, and then the women’s race will begin at 8:00am. The event will be broadcast live on Czech Television and spread to the whole world.

It is hoped that the flat course and intense competition will lead to fast times. The Czech all-comers’ records stand at 58:47 for men and 1:04:52 for women. As the women’s race is being held separate from the men’s, they may also have their eye on breaking the women-only world record of 1:06:11.

Peres Jepchirchir, the 2016 world half marathon champion, leads the women's field. The 26-year-old Kenyan set a world record of 1:05:06 – which has since been broken – back in 2017, then became pregnant and gave birth to her daughter later that year. She returned to form in 2019, winning the Lisbon Half Marathon in 1:06:54.

Sheila Chepkirui may have the slowest official PB of the field, but that’s largely due to the fact she has contested just one half marathon to date and it was at altitude in Nairobi. Given her record at other distances – including her two sub-30-minute clockings for 10km, one of which was in Prague – the 29-year-old Kenyan will be one of the big favourites this weekend.

Ethiopia’s 2015 world 5000m silver medallist Senbere Teferi and Kenya’s Edith Chelimo are the two other sub-66-minute runners in the women’s field.

Joan Melly Chelimo and Netsanet Gudeta had originally been set to compete, but both are late withdrawals due to injury.

With nine sub-60-minute performers, the men’s field is also of an extremely high standard.

Stephen Kiprop finished third in Prague last year, just two months after clocking a lifetime best of 58:42 to win the Ras Al Khaimah Half Marathon. He stands equal sixth on the world all-time list, but he’ll be up against Kibiwott Kandie, another sub-59-minute runner, and two-time Prague winner Benard Kimeli.

Kandie won this year’s Ras Al Khaimah Half Marathon in a world-leading 58:58, just six days after winning the highly competitive Kenyan cross-country title. Kimeli, who won in Prague in 2018 and 2019, turned to track racing in July and was rewarded with a 5000m PB of 13:16.61.

Others in the field with the potential for a top-three finish include Ethiopia’s two-time Delhi Half Marathon winner Andamlak Belihu, 59:28 performer Philemon Kiplimo and fellow Kenyan Abel Kipchumba.

“The pandemic has deprived these great athletes of the chance to participate in races all across the world,” said Carlo Capalbo, president of the organising committee. “We wanted to find a way of doing something spectacular for everyone. While this race is coming at what would normally be the end of the season, we hope in a way that it will be the start, a spark that gets race organisers all over the world thinking creatively about how to keep the sport alive.”

(09/03/2020) Views: 86 ⚡AMP
by World Athlietics
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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...

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Ethiopian and Kenyan runners to renew rivalry in Prague's half marathon

The World Half Marathon records are at stake as Kenyan and Ethiopian runners take over the Prague half-marathon on Saturday with the resumption of road races after the COVID-19 disruptive season.

The organizers have assembled a strong field in both men's and women's events with the sole aim of breaking men's 58:30 and women's 1:06:01.

The star-studded half-marathon is limited to 35 of the most celebrated distance runners in the world currently.

Men and women will compete separately, running on a flat, fast oval course through Letna Park in Prague in 16.5 laps. A course and a field designed to wage an all-out assault on the current world record.

Two Kenyan women, Peres Jepchirir and Edith Chelimo, will be up against Ethiopian's world half-marathon women-only record holder Netsanet Gudeta.

However, the men's race sees the withdrawal of the 2018 Prague half-marathon champion Joan Chelimo who cited unpreparedness.

Stephen Kiprop, Kibiwott Kandie and Benard Kimeli, all from Kenya, will be aiming to break the world record of 58.01 currently being held by their compatriot Geoffrey Kamworor.

Kandie holds the fastest time of 58:58 this year when he won the RAK Half in the UAE in February.

"Assembling this field of runners turned out to be a monumental feat. And that was only the start. Ensuring their health and safety posed other challenges. But we have established a set of protocols designed to make sure that no one is compromised," said Carlo Capalbo, the president of the Runczech organizing committee in a press statement on Tuesday.

(09/03/2020) Views: 77 ⚡AMP
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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...

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World under-20, 5,000m champion Edward Zakayo has shifted his focus to the 2020 Olympics Games in Tokyo

After missing out on a chance to represent Kenya at the postponed World U20 championships in Nairobi next year, world under-20 5,000m champion Edward Zakayo is has shifted his focus to the 2020 Olympics Games in Tokyo, Japan.

The Olympics and the U20 championships, both of which were set for last month, were postponed due to the coronavirus pandemic.

The 5,000m Olympic title has been proved elusive for Kenyan athletes since 1988 in Seoul, South Korea, when John Ngugi won the event.

However, Zakayo, the All Africa Games champion said: “It is a bad feeling after missing out on the world under 20 since I was prepared to win gold and close the junior ranks especially on home soil."

"I missed the world under 18 title in 2017 to Selemon Barega and I was not happy. Even though I have revenged twice, at the world under 20 in Tampere and at the All Africa Games, I was not satisfied at all.” 

Speaking during the Athletics Kenya Food Distribution programme at the Kapsait training camp, the reigning Commonwealth Games 5,000m bronze medalist  added: “The federation should supervise how the 5,000m runners train and help them like the Ugandan federation is helping Joshua Cheptegei (the world record holder over the distance)."

Apart from missing out on the world under 20, Zakayo will be forced to repeat Form Four and he fears this might prove a challenge to his ambitions.

"The national trials will be hard nut to crack. Without making it at the trials, you can’t feature in the national team for Olympics. Last year I missed out on the world championships in Doha, Qatar since despite featuring at the the All Africa Games, there were still trials to Doha,” added Zakayo.

(09/01/2020) Views: 131 ⚡AMP
by Emmanuel Sabuni
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Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games

Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games

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

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The Prague half-marathon will be holding an elite-only event and announces world record attempt

Early this Saturday something very fast will be happening in the Czech capital of Prague.

RunCzech, organizer of the Volkswagen Prague Marathon and other top-class events, will be holding an elite-only half-marathon in Letná Park called the Prague 21.1 KM – Ready for the Restart.  The objective?  Get at least one man to break 58:30 and one woman to break the women-only world record of 1:06:11 on the special 16.5-lap course which will be closed to the public.

“The pandemic has deprived these great athletes of the chance to participate in races all across the world,” said RunCzech president Carlo Capalbo through a statement.  “It has deprived us from witnessing some of the great performances that we’re accustomed to seeing.  We wanted to find a way of doing something spectacular for everyone.”

Spectacular, indeed.  Capalbo’s team has assembled a superb field of nine women and 18 men who will have the benefit of strong pacemaking.  Five women on the entry last have broken 1:06:00 for the half-marathon, led by Kenyans Joan Chelimo, Peres Jepchirchir, and Edith Chelimo.  Ethiopians Senbere Teferi and Netsanet Gudeta have also broken 66 minutes (see full athlete list below).  On the men’s side, nine men have broke 60:00 led by Kenyans Stephen Kiprop, Kibiwott Kandie, and Benard Kimeli (see full list below).

Interestingly, the fastest times ever run on Czech soil are 58:47 by Ethiopia’s Atsedu Tsegay in Prague in 2012, and 64:52 by Kenya’s Joyciline Jepkosgei in Prague in 2017.  Jepkosgei’s time was achieved in a mixed-gender race.  The fastest times in the world this year are 58:58 by Kibiwott Kandie and 1:04:31 by Yeshaneh Ababel of Ethiopia.  Both marks were achieved at the RAK Half in the UAE on February 21.

Saturday’s event will also be a demonstration project for adidas, a long-time partner of RunCzech.  All of the athletes will be wearing the World Athletics-approved adizero adios Pro (39mm sole thickness) racing shoe.  The shoe, which sells in the United States for $200 a pair, has an ultra lightweight mesh upper, LightStrike Pro foam, a carbon fiber heel plate, and five carbon-infused “energy rods” in the forefoot which, the company says, were “inspired by the bone structure of the foot.”  The shoe weights 7.9 ounces (224 grams).

“adidas has 70 years experience of working with elite athletes on shoes designed to win races,” said adidas Running’s design vice-president Sam Handy through a statement.  “Our expertise has continually evolved as athletes and sports science has progressed.  This shoe is our pinnacle race product, representing all those decades of dedication, experience and collaboration.”

Capalbo is not only hoping for fast times, but is also trying to inject some life into road running which has been hit hard by the pandemic.  While in-stadium athletics is already back to a high level, most road races have had to switch to “virtual” status, where athletes run on their own, or have simply been cancelled.  Capalbo wants to show what is possible, even during a pandemic.  Saturday’s event will be held in compliance with current Czech regulations for fighting COVID-19.

“While this race is coming at what would normally be the end of the (RunCzech) season we hope in a way that it will be the start, a spark, that gets race organizers all over the world thinking creatively about how to keep the sport alive.”

The Prague 21.1 KM – Ready for the Restart will be broadcast live on ČT Sport, and there will be an international live stream with English language commentary.

(09/01/2020) Views: 95 ⚡AMP
by David Monti
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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...

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Kenyan Conseslus Kipruto now declares next target, after beating Covid-19

World and Olympics 3,000 meters steeplechase champion Conseslus Kipruto is now raring to go after beating Covid-19.

The athlete tested positive for coronavirus three weeks ago, but has now returned a negative test for the virus and cleared to resume training.

Kipruto, who was due to start his season at the Monaco Diamond League, was forced to skip the race after contracting the deadly virus.

The Mosoriot-based Kipruto is focusing on his training as he looks forward to a better season after missing his first race.

“I’m happy because I have now been given clean bill of health after numerous tests which all turned negative. I have started training while following protocols from the Ministry of Health. My target is to improve my performance,” said Kipruto.

Kipruto will be waiting to get invitation from the Diamond League races where he hopes to lower the world record currently held by Kenyan-born Qatari Saif Saaeed Shaheen formerly known as Stephen Cherono of 7:53.63.

“My target this season is to run a world record time. With good preparations, I know it will be possible. The record has been there for a very long time and I need to bring it home,” he said.

He had been cleared to run.

Kipruto was among the 15 athletes who had been cleared to compete in Monaco Diamond League in France after getting special dispensation visas to travel to the Principality.

He said when he received the results, he went into isolation at his home where health officials have been visiting him to offer him guidance on how to manage the virus.

“It has been hectic for me but I’m happy because I didn’t have any complications until I was declared fit to go on with my life. I have been training alone jumping the barriers which I had created at home before.

“I watched the Monaco race on television and I was impressed with how the athletes are still strong despite taking a break due to the virus which disrupted sporting events across the globe,” said Kipruto.

Athletes invited to compete abroad are supposed to undergo mandatory tests for Covid-19 72 hours before competing in any race.

Kipruto is also eyeing the Kip Keino Classic which shall be held on October 3 at Nyayo National Stadium in Nairobi.

(08/31/2020) Views: 88 ⚡AMP
by Bernard Rotich
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Athletics Kenya readies to replace athletes in U-20 team

Athletics Kenya (AK) will select more youth and put them in camps in various regions ahead of 2020 World Under-20 Championships slated for August 17-22 next year in Nairobi.

While welcoming proposed health protocols issued by the government to guide resumption of sports activities countrywide, AK’s Youth Development chairman Barnaba Korir on Thursday said many athletes who could have made Team Kenya for the championship this year will not be eligible to compete in 2021.

He said this as 14 upcoming athletes at Kapsait Athletics Camp in Elgeyo Marakwet received assorted food donation and Sh3,000 for their upkeep to shield them from adverse effects of Covid-19.

“We shall continue giving support to the youth and at the same time we are aware that many athletes who could have made the team this year will not be eligible to compete in 2021. AK Youth Committee will go back to the drawing board to identify other athletes and prepare for the World Under-20 Championships slated for next year,” said Korir.

The athletes who have been struggling to put food on the table were happy to get food rations from the federation.

Kapsait is home to world marathon record holder Brigid Kosgei who is currently training for the London Marathon race slated for October 4.

The youth are among 1,400 probables who had been identified for residential training in various parts of the country to prepare for the World Under-20 Championships in Nairobi before Covid-19 struck, halting sports activities worldwide.

AK started distributing food rations two months ago across the country in collaboration with Ministry of Sports.

“We thank the Ministry of Sports through the Cabinet Secretary Amina Mohamed who has given guidance in the distribution of food. We hope the virus shall be contained and we shall get the best team for the global event next year as we seek to bag more medals,” added Korir. During the food distribution exercise, AK’s Youth Development head coach, Robert Ng’isirei, asked the young athletes to continue training.

(08/29/2020) Views: 73 ⚡AMP
by Bernard Rotich
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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: 85 ⚡AMP
by Athletics Weekly
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Napoli City Half Marathon to restart in February

The countdown for the Napoli City Half Marathon has started. The registrations are officially open for the 8th edition of the race, scheduled for February 28, 2021.

Napoli Running, a project of RunCzech, is ready to restart and with all health and safety measures advised by the Italian Institutions and FIDAL (the Italian Federation of Athletic), will organize an event which organizers call a “must” in the international calendar of road running.

The success of the 2020 edition, the last international mass participation event which took place in Europe before the lockdown, is still in the minds of the 7,000 runners, including 1500 visitors from 61 countries around the world.

The event has an economic impact on the Naples metropolitan area of approximately 4 million euro (4.7m USD), and is seen by more than 500 million viewers worldwide.

The Napoli City Half Marathon 2020 celebrated remarkable performances by the winners, Kenyan Henry Rono (RunCzech Racing) in 1:00:04 (a course record) and the compatriot Viola Cheptoo in 1:06:47, second fastest performance of all time on Italian soil.

2021’s route will start from Viale Kennedy and the Mostra d’Oltremare, and will lead the runners through the most fascinating areas of the city, running along the coast for more than 15km.

Organizers promise compliance with all the health and safety measures advised by the Italian authorities to ensure a safe event.

(08/27/2020) Views: 106 ⚡AMP
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Napoli City Half Marathon

Napoli City Half Marathon

The Napoli City Half Marathon is the most growing running event in Italy. The race, certified by IAAF / AIMS/ European Athletics, is held inoptimal conditions with an average temperature of 10 ° C. From thewaterfront to the Castel dell'Ovo, the Teatro San Carlo to the Piazzadel Plebiscito, the course will lead you through the most fascinatingareas of the city,...

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Reigning Olympic 1500m champion Faith Kipyegon has set her sights on the world 1000m record in Brussels

Reigning Olympic 1500m champion Faith Kipyegon has set her sights on the world 1000m record at the Memorial Van Damme, a Wanda Diamond League meeting in Brussels on September 4.

Kipyegon, who came up 0.17 shy of Svetlana Masterkova's 2:28.98 record at the Diamond League meeting in Monaco earlier this month, will give it another try in the same stadium and meeting where the record was set in 1996. Kipyegon's 2:29:15 performance in Monaco elevated the 26-year-old Kenyan to No2 all-time over the distance.

Organizers also announced that Brigid Kosgei, the world record-holder in the marathon, has joined the field in the women's one-hour run, a bid on the 18.517km world record in that event, which includes double world champion Sifan Hassan. Kosgei, who smashed the marathon world record with a stunning 2:14:04 run in Chicago last year, will be making her track debut. 

Slight injuries by key local athletes have forced some changes to the programme.

Nagging achilles tendon pain has sidelined Olympic heptathlon champion Nafi Thiam, cancelling her triathlon duel with world champion Katerina Johnson-Thompson of Great Britain. Johnson-Thompson will still compete in the 100m hurdles and the high jump.

Injury woes have also struck the Borlee brothers, thus cancelling the mixed 4x400m relay. That made room on the programme for the women's 1000m.

Meanwhile, the removal of the triathlon shot put has made room for the women's 100m to give rising Belgian star Rani Rosius an opportunity in the spotlight. The 20-year-old improved her career best to 11.39 at the national championships recently to move up to No2 on the Belgian all-time list.

Olympic champion Thiago Braz of Brazil has joined the men's pole vault field, taking on world record holder Mondo Duplantis and local star Ben Broeders.

Local restrictions due to the coronavirus pandemic have forced the meeting behind closed doors but will be broadcast live across several platforms. Details will be announced shortly.

(08/27/2020) Views: 74 ⚡AMP
by World Athletics
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Kenyan Victor Chumo looking forward to London Marathon duties

As world marathon Eliud Kipchoge and Ethiopia's Kenenisa Bekele, the biggest threat to the Kenyan's 2:01:39 mark, prepare for the October 4 London Marathon, ‘Rabbit’ Victor Chumo is preparing for an equally daunting task.

Chumo will be pacing for Kipchoge as he seeks to retain his title in the streets of London and has revealed his kind of routine as he battles to stay sharp for the task ahead.

The reigning Barcelona Half Marathon champion disclosed that he has been running at least 30km daily ahead of what is expected to be a highly-charged race.

Chumo will be guiding the elite-runners only event, occasioned by the coronavirus pandemic, where he leads the first group while Chicago Marathon champion, Mo Farah, will be pacing for the second group.

He said he fully understands what is at stake now that it will be the third time pacing for the only man to have dipped under two hours over the distance.

“I first paced Kipchoge during the Nike Breaking 2 where he ran 2:00: 25. I then paced him during Ineos 1:59 Challenge, running 1:59:40. With this, he has trust in me and I have to once again deliver," said Chumo.

Kipchoge will be chasing his fifth title in London after winning the 2015, 2016, 2018 and 2019 editions.

“There will be a strong field in London and that needs a strong pacesetter. You can imagine how speedy the race will be with some of the greatest marathon runners on show,” said the former Kenya Defence Forces man.

Kipchoge and Bekele (2:01:41) will also have to contend with some of the toughest challengers including nine who have dipped under 2:06.

They include Mosinet Geremew (2:02:55), Mule Wasihun (2:03:16), Sisay Lemma (2:03:36), Tamirat Tola (2:04:06), Marius Kipserem (2:04:11), Shura Kitata (2:04:49), Vincent Kipchumba (2:05:09), Sondre Nordstad Moen (2:05:48) and Gideon Kipketer (2:05:51).

Other pace-setters include Noah Kipkemoi, who also paced at Ineos Challenge, Erick Kiptanui, Alfred Barkach, Shadrack Kimining, Matt Clowes (Great Britain), and Jake Smith (Great Britain).

(08/26/2020) Views: 127 ⚡AMP
by Emmanuel Sabuni
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Virgin London Marathon

Virgin London Marathon

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

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Nozomi Tanaka takes down Japanese 1500m record at Golden Grand Prix in Tokyo

It may not have been the competition that Tokyo’s Olympic Stadium had originally been set to host in August 2020, but Japan’s leading athletes got a taste of the big time at the Seiko Golden Grand Prix, a World Athletics Continental Tour Gold meeting, on Sunday (23).

To help minimise risks, no spectators were present and the fields were entirely made up of domestic athletes. But thousands of fans were still able to tune in via TV coverage and the live stream to watch Japan’s leading athletes in action.

They rose to the occasion, too, especially Nozomi Tanaka. The world U20 3000m champion stepped down in distance to the 1500m and front-ran her way to a national record. The 20-year-old had announced her intentions to break the mark ahead of the race, having come within a second of Yuriko Kobayashi’s 14-year-old mark (4:07.86) with a 4:08.68 clocking in Shibetsu last month.

With no pacemakers, Tanaka started conservatively and led the field through the first lap in 66.42. Japanese 800m and 1500m champion Ran Urabe, compatriot Kaede Hagitani and Kenya’s Japan-based Hellen Lobun were the only ones capable of following the early pace.

At 800m, reached in 2:11.91, Urabe moved into second place as Lobun and Hagitani dropped behind. Tanaka continued to wind up the pace, and after hearing the bell ring with 3:02.37 on the clock, she kicked it up another gear and pulled away from Urabe.

Tanaka flew around the final lap in 63 seconds to cross the line in 4:05.27, smashing the national record by two seconds. Urabe finished six seconds in arrears, clocking 4:11.75.

"I thought about all kinds of race plans, but I also knew that if I thought about it too much, I’d get anxious," said Tanaka, whose mother, Chihiro, is a two-time Hokkaido Marathon champion. "So today I decided not to be too conscious of the time and to just run. I’ve been confident with my finish in training, so I just gave everything I had. I realised in the final 100 metres that I was going to break the national record.

"I’m very excited that I finally broke the national record that had been held by Yuriko Kobayashi, who is from my home town," added Tanaka, who is coached by her father, Katsutoshi. "With my performance today I was able to show my appreciation towards to the people who have supported me."

(08/25/2020) Views: 89 ⚡AMP
by World Athletics
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World 1,500m champion Timothy Cheruiyot unstoppable in the Stockholm Diamond League on Sunday

World 1,500m champion Timothy Cheruiyot stamped his authority to seal his season’s double with an emphatic front-running victory in the Stockholm Diamond League on Sunday.

World 800m bronze medallist Ferguson Rotich might not have been lucky yet, but staged an improved performance to finish fourth as compatriots, Continental Cup 1,500m champion Winny Chebet and World 5,000m title holder Hellen Obiri failed to click in their respective races.

Nine days after clocking a world lead of three minutes and 28.45 seconds in Monaco, missing a personal best by four seconds, Cheruiyot timed 3:30.25 this time around in the Swedish capital.

Norwegian Jakob Ingebrigtsen once again played second fiddle, finishing second in 3:30.74 as Australian Stewart Mcsweyn dug in for third in personal best 3:31.48.

“It was a bit windy, but the pace was good and I am pleased with my win today. We are travelling around many countries but we are following all precautions and wearing masks so I am happy to be racing,” said Cheruiyot.

Ingebrigtsen noted that his target was to get close to Cheruiyot and see if he could beat him, but the Kenyan still looked stronger.

“I didn't have the great legs that I had in Monaco, it was a tough race, it wasn't too easy today, “said Ingebrigtsen

“I am closing in on him though, and it’s just a matter of time before I beat him.”

The Norwegian, who set a new European record and personal best 3:28.68 in Monaco, explained that his goal to get a fast race this season and he did that in Monaco.

In the men's 800m, Rotich clocked 1:45.11 to lose the battle to World champion American Donovan Brazier, who sealed his second win in 1:43.76.

Marco Arop from Canada and Swede Andreas Kramer settled second and third in 1:44.67 and 1:45.04 respectively.

Laura Muir from Britain, who finished second behind Kenya’s World 1,500m champion Faith Chepng’etich in 1,000m race in Monaco, cashed in on Chepng’etich's absence to win the metric mile race in Stockholm.

Muir returned a world lead of 3:57.86 in a race where Chebet settled fourth in 4:02.58 as Obiri, the Olympic 5,000m silver medallist, who won the 5,000m in Monaco, came in 12th in 4:10.53.

(08/24/2020) Views: 86 ⚡AMP
by Ayumba Ayodi
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World champion Ruth Chepng’etich promises thrilling battle at London Marathon

World champion Ruth Chepng’etich says her clash with world marathon record-holder Brigid Kosgei at London Marathon on October 4 will “read like a script from a thriller.”

“Nothing can really describe that rare moment when some of the best marathoners clash,” said Chepng’etich, who has been training in isolation in Ngong, Kajiado County.

“People should expect thrills and a tough battle. That is why I want to be in one of my best shape before meeting my good friend Brigid and the rest of the star-studded pack,” explained Chepng’etich as the London Marathon organisers Friday unleashed the star-studded elite cast for the rescheduled race on October 4.

NTV has exclusive rights for the race in Kenya and will broadcast the eagerly-awaited clash live.

The 26-year-old Chepnng’etich said everyone will be heading into the race with unknown qualities owing to Covid-19 pandemic restrictions.

“You really can’t tell what someone has been doing in isolation or predict the winning time,” said Chepng’etich, adding that it will feel great running her first World Marathon Majors race.

“It will take a lot of courage and focus to face some of these athletes who have conquered races at the World Marathon Majors like Brigid and Vivian Cheruiyot. I have a lot to learn from them too,” she said. Kosgei, who has a personal best of two hours, 14 minutes and four seconds, will be making her third stab at the London Marathon, having won last year in 2:18:20 after finishing second behind compatriot Vivian Cheruiyot in 2018 clocking 2:20:13.

Agemates, Kosgei and Chepng'etich will have company in Cheruiyot, who won in London in 2018 in a career best 2:18:31, and Valary Aiyabei, the winner of the 2019 Frankfurt Marathon (2:19.10).

British athletics legend Mo Farah has agreed to be one of the pacemakers for this year’s London Marathon with his aim to help fellow Britons make the qualifying time for the Olympics.

The 37-year-old will also hope to tee up a spectacular final duel between two fellow legends in Ethiopia’s Kenenisa Bekele and Kenya’s world record holder Eliud Kipchoge.

(08/22/2020) Views: 121 ⚡AMP
by Ayumba Ayodi
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Virgin London Marathon

Virgin London Marathon

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

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Moroccan steeplechaser Soufiane El Bakkali has huge admiration for Kenyan athletes.

In fact, as the delayed elite season opened with the Monaco Diamond League meeting last week, El Bakkali was excited upon seeing the Kenyan contingent at the Stade Loius II in the heart of the principality.

“The men from Africa!” he screamed and then posed for selfies with the Kenyan delegation headed by coach Bernard Ouma.

“He actually asked for the group photo on our way out of the track,” Ouma added, describing the Moroccan as an “amiable character.”

“We had our last breakfast together in Monaco on Sunday on his way to Paris,” Ouma added on Thursday.

First-placed Morocco's Soufiane El Bakkali competed in the men's 3,000 metres steeplechase event during the Diamond League Athletics Meeting at The Louis II Stadium in Monaco on August 14, 2020.

The 24-year-old Moroccan has now expressed his interest in running with the Kenyans at the October 3 Kip Keino Classic leg of the World Athletics Continental Tour at the Nyayo National Stadium.

This sets up a potentially mouthwatering race given that El Bakkali ran the season’s best (world lead) time of eight minutes, 8.04 seconds to win in Monaco ahead of Kenya’s Leonard Bett (8:08.78).

Morocco's Soufiane El Bakkali (top photo) celebrates after winning the men's 3,000 metres steeplechase event as second-placed Leonard Bett of Kenya looks on during the Diamond League Athletics Meeting at The Louis II Stadium in Monaco on August 14, 2020.

Down with Covid-19, Kenya’s world and Olympic champion Conseslus Kipruto should be fit by then to set up a classic from 4.23pm at Nyayo National Stadium on October 3, according to the draft programme of events. “El Bakkali’s management say he wants to fly from the Doha Diamond League meeting (September 25) direct to Nairobi,” Kip Keino Classic meet director Barnaba Korir confirmed on Thursday. “We are finalising the arrangements for him and this (steeplechase) definitely should be one of the highlights of the Kip Keino Classic.”

With, bizzarrely, Morocco having failed to win a gold medal at the Olympic Games since the legend Hicham El Guerrouj struck a 1,500, and 5,000m double in Athents 16 years ago, the north African nation is banking on El Bakkali to pan the elusive medal at the Tokyo Games, now shifted to next summer.

Olympics 3,000m steeplechase champion Conseslus Kipruto (right), and another athlete during training at St Francis Cheptarit High School in Mosoriot, Nandi County on August 06. 

El Bakkali (PB 7:58.15) won silver at the 2017 World Championships in London and followed up with bronze in Doha last year, finishing behind Kipruto and Ethiopia’s Lamecha Girma whom he could face at the Kip Keino Classic on October 3.

He was fourth at the 2016 Rio Games and was the only Moroccan athlete signed up by Visa (credit card) in its promotions for Tokyo 2020.

On Thursday, Ouma, who is preparing his athletes for this weekend’s second Diamond League meeting in Stockholm, said there could also be a possibility of bigger names coming to Nairobi in October.

“It (Kip Keino Classic) will be a very entertaining meet,” he summed it up.

(08/21/2020) Views: 75 ⚡AMP
by Elias Makori
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Mo Farah will be the pacemaker for the elite men's race at October's rescheduled London Marathon

Briton Mo Farah, 37, is among the competitors to have achieved the Olympic-qualifying time of two hours 11 minutes 30 seconds.

Kenyan Eliud Kipchoge, who won last year's event, leads the men's field with Kenenisa Bekele of Ethiopia.

Reduced fields of 30-40 athletes will also compete for the elite women's and wheelchair titles on 4 October.

The races will take place on a bio-secure closed course amid the coronavirus pandemic.

"The London Marathon has been so important to me since I was a schoolboy and when they asked me to do this I thought it would be great to help," said Farah, who finished third in 2018 and fifth last year.

"I am in good shape. I'll be in London that week and it fits in with my training."

Ethiopians Mosinet Geremew and Mule Wasihun, who finished runner-up and third respectively in 2019, are among eight athletes who have run marathons in under two hours five minutes.

Brigid Kosgei of Kenya heads up the women's elite field alongside compatriot and world champion Ruth Chepngetich.

Ethiopia's Roza Dereje and Kenyans Vivian Cheruiyot, Valary Jemeli and Degitu Azimeraw are the other picks of the line-up.

The full elite wheelchair fields will be released next week.

The route will consist of laps of about 1.5 miles, taking in The Mall, Horse Guards Parade, Birdcage Walk and Buckingham Palace.

(08/21/2020) Views: 110 ⚡AMP
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Virgin London Marathon

Virgin London Marathon

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

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European champion Jakob Ingebrigtsen from Norway set his second European record of the season in the 1500m with 3:28.68 in the Monaco Diamond League on Friday

After breaking the European 2000m record with 4:50.01 at the Impossible Games in Oslo where he had the advantage of being paced by his brothers, Ingebrigtsen was racing against not only his older brother Filip but also the reigning world champion Timothy Cheruiyot from Kenya who was decisively beaten by the Ingebrigtsens in the virtual head-to-head clash between Oslo and Nairobi.

Aided by his training partners who were acting as his pacemakers, Cheruiyot blazed through the early stages in an unfathomably fast pace on his unofficial season’s debut. These exertions appeared to be catching up on the world champion as the pack closed up on Cheruiyot at the bell with Ingebrigtsen looming into view and Great Britain’s Jake Wightman also rounding into contention.

Ingebrigtsen was in position to strike off the final bend but the forward-leaning Cheruiyot kicked away again, holding the Norwegian off to win in a world leading 3:28.45 after an overly exuberant first 400 meters of 52.59. In contrast Ingebrigtsen ran a much more steady paced race and was rewarded with a phenomenally fast time of 3:28.68.

Ingebrigtsen’s time eclipsed Mo Farah’s European record of 3:28.81 which was set in the same stadium seven years ago and the teenager moves to eighth on the world all-time list which is still headed by Hicham El Guerrouj’s world record of 3:26.00.

“I felt like I kept the same pace...going from 3:30 to 3:28 it's double the achievement. It's crazy,” said Ingebrigtsen whose previous lifetime best stood at 3:30.16.

Ingebrigtsen was gearing up for not only his Olympic debut in Tokyo as well as the now-cancelled European Championships in Paris where more continental honors must have surely beckoned. Despite the decimation of the summer calendar due to the coronavirus pandemic, motivation has by no means been lacking for the ebullient and popular Norwegian.

“This year I have been doing every session, I never skipped a single one because I was very motivated after Doha. That's why I can run this fast. It's unbelievable to run this fast in one race. It's one shot, one chance,” he said.

The Stade Louis II Stadium is the foremost venue for middle distance runners searching for fast times. Behind Ingebrigtsen, Wightman moved to fourth on the European all-time list - ahead of both Sebastian Coe (3:29.77) and Steve Cram (3:29.67) among others - with a marvelous lifetime best of 3:29.47.

Filip Ingebrigtsen, who had to concede the family record of 3:30.01 to Jakob tonight, almost matched his lifetime best with 3:30.35 in fourth. Reigning European indoor champion Marcin Lewandowski from Poland was seventh in 3:33.99.

(08/15/2020) Views: 120 ⚡AMP
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Lots of fast times in Monaco including a new 5000m world record

Ugandan Joshua Cheptegei broke a 16-year-old world record in the 5000m by nearly two seconds, clocking 12:35.36 in Monaco on Friday.

Cheptegei, the 2019 World 10,000m champion who reportedly needed 80 hours to travel from Uganda for the Diamond League meet, took 1.99 seconds off Ethiopian legend Kenenisa Bekele‘s world record from 2004. Bekele is also the 10,000m world-record holder and the second-fastest marathoner in history.

“It took a lot of mind setting to keep being motivated this year because so many people are staying at home, but you have to stay motivated,” Cheptegei said, according to organizers. “I pushed myself, I had the right staff with me, the right coach.”

Cheptegei, 23, came into Monaco as the 73rd-fastest man in history with a personal best of 12:57.41. But he declared before the meet that the world record was his goal, given he had no Olympics or world championships to peak for this year.

“It is very difficult to run any world record,” was posted on the Instagram of Bekele, who is part of the NN Running Team with Cheptegei. “Congratulations to my teammate [Cheptegei].”

The Diamond League next moves to Stockholm on Aug. 23.

In other events Friday, Noah Lyles easily won a 200m after raising a black-gloved first before the start. More on Lyles’ gesture and victory here.

Donavan Brazier extended a year-plus 800m win streak, clocking 1:43.15 and holding off countryman Bryce Hoppel by .08. Brazier won his last seven meets, including national, world and Diamond League titles in 2019, when he broke a 34-year-old American record.

Olympic silver medalist Orlando Ortega of Spain won the 110m hurdles in 13.11 seconds, overtaking world champion Grant Holloway. Holloway, who won worlds in 13.10 last autumn, finished fourth in 13.19.

Timothy Cheruiyot followed his 2019 World title by clocking his second-fastest 1500m ever. The Kenyan recorded 3:28.45, holding off Norwegian 19-year-old Jakob Ingebrigtsen, who set a European record of 3:28.68.

Sifan Hassan, the world’s top female distance runner, dropped out of the 5000m with two and a half laps left while in the lead pack. Two-time world champion Hellen Obiri won in 14:22.12, surging past Ethiopian Letesenbet Gidey on the final lap.

Karsten Warholm ran the joint eighth-fastest 400m hurdles in history, a 47.10 against a field that lacked rivals Rai Benjamin and Abderrahman Samba. Warholm, the two-time world champion, ranks second in history with a personal best of 46.92, trailing only American Kevin Young‘s 46.78 from the 1992 Olympics.

American Lynna Irby won her Diamond League debut with a 50.50 in the 400m. Irby, the second-fastest American in 2018, failed to make the 2019 World team. On Friday, she beat Wadeline Jonathas, the top American in 2019.

(08/14/2020) Views: 81 ⚡AMP
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Joshua Cheptegei smashes 5000m world record in Monaco Diamond league

Joshua Cheptege is the new 5000m world record in a time of 12:35:36.He broke kenenisa Bekele record that stood out for 16 years with 2 seconds.He was followed in adistance by Kimeli from kenya 12:51:78 and Krop 13:11:32.

The 5km world record holder of 12:51 was pace by two pacekars making him crossed the first lap 60.00 inside world record.The pacers were lead by 24 years Uganda Kissa who helped him crossed 1000m in 2:31:7 which was almost world record tempo compared to Bekele's 2:33:2.

He looked comfortable maintaining every km in 2:31:3-9.The world record was in severe threat when he maintain every 400m under 61 seconds as he look calm and relaxed.His super running made him run every mile faster than Bekele when he broke world record.

The fastest lap that he ran was 59 seconds making him one of the tactical athlete in the world. .He looked full of energy when crossed the finish  smiling  while stopping the watch.Kimeli managed to run his pb of 12:51.

(08/14/2020) Views: 79 ⚡AMP
by Willie Korir
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