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Articles tagged #Prefontaine
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Olympic silver medalist Hellen Obiri is targeting qualification times to enable her to chase double gold at the World Championships in Doha, Qatar in October

Obiri confirmed on Friday that with a conducive program in Doha, she will try her luck in both 5,000m and the 10,000m races.

However, there is a small matter of qualifying in the 10,000m distance to confirm her slot in the Kenya team.

"I have shaken off the bruises from my fall in Stockholm and am back in good shape despite not running well at the Prefontaine Classic in California, USA, last Sunday," said Obiri on Friday in Nairobi.

The Africa champion in 5,000m says London leg of the Diamond League in two weeks' time will offer her a best chance to clinch the qualifying times.

"I will be running and looking for qualifying time in 5,000m at the London Diamond League on July 20-21 after the Stockholm mishap," she said.

On Thursday she won in the Kenya Defence Forces championships clocking 31:43.

On May 20, Obiri endured torrid time in Stockholm as she fell hard and eventually finished 12th in the 5,000m.

However, she will have to be wary of world half marathon record holder Joyciline Jepkosgei who was second to her in Nairobi.

Jepkosgei said she has shelved her marathon plans to focus on making Kenya team for the World Championships. Others are Agnes Tirop, Pauline Korikwiang, former World Champion Linet Masai and Commonwealth 10,000m champion Stella Chesang.

"The focus is always on getting in the best shape and going for the gold. But I have not competed in the 10,000m for a while and that is why I want to test and see how my performance will be in London and then I will decide," said Obiri.

As the defending champion Obiri has an automatic ticket for the 5,000m race. However, she must hit the qualifying mark in the 10,000m race and be among the top two at the Kenyan trials later in July.

(07/05/2019) ⚡AMP
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IAAF World Athletics Championships Doha

IAAF World Athletics Championships Doha

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

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South African Caster Semenya ran the fastest 800m ever run on American soil at the Prefontaine Classic at Stanford clocking 1:55.7

Caster Semenya was almost four seconds ahead of Americans Ajee Wilson and Raevyn Rogers, who crossed the line in season’s best times of 1:58.36 and 1:58.65. This was Caster’s 31st straight victory over this distance clocking 1:55.7 and the fastest time ever on US soil.  

Semenya continues to race well despite the controversy surrounding the IAAF’s efforts to prevent her from racing without taking medication to lower her naturally-high testosterone, something she has consistently said she will not do.

The Swiss Federal Tribunal ruled that she must be allowed to race while it is considering her appeal of the IAAF’s testosterone rule, upheld in a May 1 ruling by the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS).

In other results, Sifan Hassan of the Netherlands won the women’s 3,000m in a new European record of 8:18.49, in a race that also featured Konstanze Klosterhalfen (who finished second with a new PB of 8:20.07), Genzebe Dibaba (fourth, with a new PB of 8:21.29) and World Cross Country champion Hellen Obiri(who finished sixth).

Also on Sunday, Canada’s Mo Ahmed set a new personal best of 8:15.76 in the 2-mile event, good enough for fourth place. Justyn Knight finished ninth, in 8:19.75. The race was won by World Cross Country champion Joshua Cheptegei of Uganda in a world-leading time of 8:07.54. Ahmed broke his own Canadian 5,000m record at the Oslo Diamond League last month.

(07/02/2019) ⚡AMP
by Anne Francis
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Prefontaine Classic

Prefontaine Classic

Stanford University's Cobb Track & Angell Field will be the venue for this year's 45th NIKE Prefontaine Classic/IAAF Diamond League meet on Sunday, June 30.With the ongoing construction of Hayward Field in advance of the 2020 U.S. Olympic Trials and the 2021 IAAF World Championships, an alternate site for America's flagship invitational meet was required. After an extensive search in...

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Sifan Hassan runs 8:18.49 for the win at the Women’s 3000 Prefontaine Classic

Fans at Stanford didn’t get to see the fastest women’s 3000m ever, but they may have seen the greatest clean women’s 3000m race ever as Sifan Hassan of Netherlands ran 8:18.49 for the win, Konstanze Klosterhalfen of Germany ran 8:20.07 for second, and Letesenbet Gidey of Ethiopia 8:20.27 for third, the three fastest non-Chinese outdoor times ever.

Shannon Osika rabbitted the field the first 1000 (2:45.75) and then Mary Kuria took over through 2000 (5:36.15). Kuria picked up the pace as she went down the backstretch to hit 2000, and once she stepped off the track Gidey kept the pace going.

Gidey went from running 67- and 68-second laps to 65.03 with two laps to go as only Genzebe Dibaba was within a second of her. A 65.88 penultimate lap gave Gidey a 1.14-second lead at the bell over Hassan, who had passed Dibaba just before the bell as Dibaba was fading.

However, Gidey was slowing too. She stumbled around the first turn and took a step on the inside of the rail before regaining her balance.

Hassan would pass her on the backstretch and continue on to the dominant victory. Klosterhalfen would pass Dibaba on the final turn and Gidey right before the finish for 2nd as Klostehalfen’s last lap was 64.40 to 66.31 for Gidey.

(07/01/2019) ⚡AMP
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Prefontaine Classic

Prefontaine Classic

Stanford University's Cobb Track & Angell Field will be the venue for this year's 45th NIKE Prefontaine Classic/IAAF Diamond League meet on Sunday, June 30.With the ongoing construction of Hayward Field in advance of the 2020 U.S. Olympic Trials and the 2021 IAAF World Championships, an alternate site for America's flagship invitational meet was required. After an extensive search in...

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Your guide to this year's Prefontaine Classic

The Prefontaine Classic relocated, temporarily, and it brought the best fields of the Diamond League season with it to Stanford, California on Sunday June 30.

That includes the world’s fastest man and woman this year (Christian Coleman and Elaine Thompson), the athlete who has made the most worldwide headlines this season (Caster Semenya) and a bevy of other reigning Olympic and world champions.

Notably, Olympic 10,000m champion Almaz Ayana of Ethiopia and Olympic 1500m champion Faith Kipyegon will compete for the first time since 2017. World 100m champions Justin Gatlin and Tori Bowie are in their first Diamond League meets in more than one year. It’s the first Diamond League in two years for 2008 Olympic 400m champ LaShawn Merritt. It’s also the first race of 2019 for Olympic 1500m champion Matthew Centrowitz.

NBC and NBC Sports Gold air live coverage Sunday from 1-3 p.m. Pacific.

The Pre Classic has been held annually since 1975 in Eugene, Ore. But Hayward Field’s reconstruction ahead of the 2020 Olympic Trials forced a move to Cobb Track and Angell Field at Stanford.

Here are the Pre Classic entry lists. Here’s the schedule of events (all times Pacific):

Here are 10 events to watch:

Men’s Pole Vault — 12:43 p.m.The Big Three of the event meet for the first time this season: 2012 Olympic champion and world-record holder Renaud Lavillenie of France, 2017 World champion Sam Kendricksand 2018 and 2019 world leader Mondo Duplantis of Sweden, who just turned pro after his freshman year at LSU. Lavillenie has competed just once this season due to injury. Duplantis was beaten at NCAAs by Chris Nilsen (also in the Pre field). But Kendricks has been hot, winning the first three Diamond League pole vaults this season (though Lavillenie and Nilsen weren’t in any of those fields and Duplantis just one).

Women’s High Jump — 1:08 p.m.U.S. champion Vashti Cunningham takes another crack at Russian Mariya Lasitskene, who has just two losses in the last three years. Cunningham is 0-7 versus Lasitskene but has this spring already bettered her top clearance of 2018. Lasitskene, though, appears in top form after taking three attempts at a world record 2.10 meters in Ostrava last week.

Women’s 3000m Steeplechase — 1:11 p.m.Six of the eight fastest in history, headlined by world gold and silver medalists Emma Coburn and Courtney Frerichs. The only time either Coburn or Frerichs won a steeple that included any of the four fastest Kenyans in history was at those 2017 Worlds. Another chance Sunday.

Women’s 100m — 1:27 p.m.NCAA champion Sha’Carri Richardson would have been the favorite here in her pro debut if not for what happened Friday. Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce, a two-time Olympic 100m champion, clocked her fastest time in six years (10.73 seconds) to become the fastest mom in history and No. 2 in the world this year behind Rio gold medalist Elaine Thompson. Also watch reigning world champ Tori Bowie, who is coming back from a quad tear and coaching change.

Women’s 800m — 1:47 p.m.Caster Semenya races her trademark event for the first time since a Swiss Supreme Court ruled her eligible while it deliberates on her appeal against a Court of Arbitration for Sport decision to uphold an IAAF rule capping testosterone in women’s events from the 400m through the mile. The Swiss court ruling applies only to Semenya and not the other Rio Olympic medalists, Francine Niyonsaba and Margaret Wambui, who are also affected by the new rule. So Semenya’s closest threat at Pre is American record holder Ajeé Wilson, but Semenya has won 30 straight 800m races dating to 2015.

Men’s Shot Put — 2:01 p.m.Olympic champion Ryan Crouser had a sterling record at Hayward Field, taking NCAA, Pre Classic and Olympic Trials titles. He’s pretty strong in California, too, recording his personal best (22.74 meters) in Long Beach in April. Nobody has been within a foot and a half of that this season, but the last two world champions (New Zealand’s Tom Walsh and American Joe Kovacs) will try to snap his undefeated 2019 on Sunday.

Men’s 400m — 2:19 p.m.Lost some sizzle with the withdrawal of 2012 Olympic champion Kirani James, who has missed time with Graves’ disease and, more recently, his mother’s death. Instead, the three fastest Americans of the last decade line up — 2018 and 2019 world leader Michael Norman (43.45 from April 20), 2017 world No. 2 Fred Kerley and 2008 Olympic championLaShawn Merritt.

Women’s 200m — 2:25 p.m.Strongest sprint field of the meet: 2016 Olympic champion Elaine Thompson, 2015 and 2017 World champion Dafne Schippers and 2018 world leader Dina Asher-Smith. Should produce the fastest time in the world this year, which is currently 22.16, and the favorite for world champs.

Men’s 100m — 2:39 p.m.Justin Gatlin and Christian Coleman go head-to-head for the first time since the 2017 Worlds, where Gatlin took gold, Usain Bolt silver and Coleman bronze. Coleman is the world’s fastest man this Olympic cycle (9.79) and this year (9.85). Gatlin, 37, hasn’t broken 10 seconds since beating Bolt but has a bye to defend his title in Doha in September.

Men’s Mile — 2:51 p.m.Olympic 1500m champ Matthew Centrowitz races on the track for the first time since July 22, eyeing his first win in the Pre mile in his sixth try. The foes are formidable, including the top two milers since Rio — Kenyans Timothy Cheruiyot and Elijah Manangoi — Norwegian brothers Filip and Jakob Ingebrigtsen and Ethiopian Yomif Kejelcha, who on March 3 broke the 22-year-old indoor mile world record. Nobody has been within four seconds of the outdoor mile word record (Hicham El Guerrouj‘s 3:43.13 in 1999) since 2007.

(06/29/2019) ⚡AMP
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Prefontaine Classic

Prefontaine Classic

Stanford University's Cobb Track & Angell Field will be the venue for this year's 45th NIKE Prefontaine Classic/IAAF Diamond League meet on Sunday, June 30.With the ongoing construction of Hayward Field in advance of the 2020 U.S. Olympic Trials and the 2021 IAAF World Championships, an alternate site for America's flagship invitational meet was required. After an extensive search in...

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World leaders Christian Coleman and Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce form part of two strong 100m fields at the Prefontaine Classic

n 2018 Coleman broke the world indoor 60m record, won world indoor 60m gold and ended the season with the fastest time in the world, 9.79. After finishing second at the Prefontaine Classic in 2018 in a wind-aided 9.84, the 23-year-old returns to this year’s edition off the back of two world-leading marks: 9.86 in Shanghai and 9.85 in Olso.

This weekend he will face a field full of sub-10-second performers, two of whom have bettered that barrier this year.

Cravon Gillespie recorded lifetime bests of 9.93 for 100m and 19.93 for 200m on the same day to finish second in both events at the recent NCAA Championships.

European champion Zharnel Hughes of Great Britain is undefeated at 100m this year and heads to Stanford with a season’s best of 9.97, just 0.06 shy of his lifetime best.

The field also includes world champion Justin Gatlin, prolific sub-10-second performer Michael Rodgers, 2018 NCAA champion Cameron Burrell, 2018 Jamaican champion Tyquendo Tracey and Italian record-holder Filippo Tortu.

The women’s 100m may not be a scoring discipline in Stanford, but that hasn’t affected the quality as all eight women in the field have previously bettered 11 seconds and four of them have sub-10.80 PBs.

Multiple world and Olympic champion Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce, who became a mother in 2017, is back to her best. At the recent Jamaican Championships she posted times of 10.73 and 22.22 – her fastest times since 2013 and just a whisker away from her lifetime bests.

The 32-year-old won the Prefontaine Classic 100m in 2013 and 2015 so will be looking for a third victory this weekend.

But the experienced Jamaican will be up against one of the newest and most exciting sprint talents.

Sha’Carri Richardson, aged just 19, won the 100m in 10.75 and placed second in the 200m in 22.17 at the NCAA Championships earlier this month, breaking the world U20 records in both events (pending ratification).

The teenager has since turned professional and this will be her first race since her record-breaking feats at the NCAA Championships.

Double world silver medallist Marie-Josee Ta Lou, who won last year’s Pre Classic, will be back, so too will her Ivorian compatriot Murielle Ahoure, the 2018 Diamond League champion.

Two-time Pre Classic winner English Gardner, US champion Aleia Hobbs, world indoor bronze medallist Mujinga Kambundji and Olympic finalist Michelle-Lee Ahye are also in the loaded field.

(06/26/2019) ⚡AMP
by IAAF
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Prefontaine Classic

Prefontaine Classic

Stanford University's Cobb Track & Angell Field will be the venue for this year's 45th NIKE Prefontaine Classic/IAAF Diamond League meet on Sunday, June 30.With the ongoing construction of Hayward Field in advance of the 2020 U.S. Olympic Trials and the 2021 IAAF World Championships, an alternate site for America's flagship invitational meet was required. After an extensive search in...

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Jessica Hull’s decision to turn professional and leave Oregon with a collegiate season of outdoor track eligibility remaining was thoughtful and ultimately bittersweet, she said

The times she was running, the way she was progressing in her training, and the big meets on the calendar over the coming year — including the 2020 Olympics in Tokyo — all indicated the time was right for the redshirt junior from Australia to move on.

“You don’t want the opportunity to slip free,” Hull said. “You want to make the most of all that there is out there. Hopefully, the transition will be with eyes wide open and I learn as much as I can the next 12 months leading to Tokyo.”

The 22-year-old middle distance runner, who signed with an agent last week but not yet a shoe sponsor, leaves the Ducks as a four-time NCAA champion, seven-time all-American and two-time record-holder who is coming off the most impressive year of her career.

She opened her indoor season by resetting her school record in the mile in 4 minutes, 32.03 seconds. In her second race, she broke Jordan Hasay’s school record in the 3,000 meters with an 8:53.91 at the Husky Classic.

She went on to win NCAA Indoor titles in the 3,000 and distance medley relay.

During the outdoor season, she was the national leader in the 1,500 during the regular season at 4:12.08 and then topped that with a 4:09.90 at the NCAA West Preliminary meet.

She also became the fourth-fastest performer in Oregon history in the 5,000 with her 15:34.93 at the Stanford Invitational and a two-time Pac-12 champion in the 1,500.

She went into the NCAA Outdoor Championships as the defending champion but finished in second place despite running a personal-record and World Outdoor Championship qualifying time of 4:06.27 — more than two seconds faster than what she ran in 2018 to win the title.

It was also that performance that gave Hull the last bit evidence she needed to turn pro.

“It kind of solidified it,” said Hull, who is entered in summer school at Oregon to finish the last class she needs to complete her degree. “It definitely showed I was ready to mix it up with that level of competition. It was a bit of a confidence booster to see that I could do it. The way training was going, we knew those kinds of marks were there, I just hadn’t really been in a race to see that I could do it.”

Hull will get tested right away in her first race as a professional when she takes on a star-studded field in the 1,500 during the Prefontaine Classic on Sunday at Stanford’s Cobb Track & Angell Field.

(06/25/2019) ⚡AMP
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Prefontaine Classic

Prefontaine Classic

Stanford University's Cobb Track & Angell Field will be the venue for this year's 45th NIKE Prefontaine Classic/IAAF Diamond League meet on Sunday, June 30.With the ongoing construction of Hayward Field in advance of the 2020 U.S. Olympic Trials and the 2021 IAAF World Championships, an alternate site for America's flagship invitational meet was required. After an extensive search in...

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South Africa’s Caster Semenya has switched from the 3000m to 800m event at the Prefontaine Classic

“Caster’s representation requested that she be moved from the 3,000 metres (where she was originally entered) to the 800 metres, and we are happy to comply,” Prefontaine Classic meet director Tom Jordan said in a statement.

The Federal Supreme Court of Switzerland last week rejected the International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF) bid to impose the female eligibility regulations immediately on Semenya.

The ruling meant Semenya was allowed to compete without taking any testosterone-lowering medication. The 28-year-old, however, was still not allowed to race in the women’s 800m event in Rabat on June 16 initially.

The double Olympic 800m champion was given permission to run the 800m too late for her to adequately prepare and make travel arrangements - meaning she could not take up the invite to compete.

(06/19/2019) ⚡AMP
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Prefontaine Classic

Prefontaine Classic

Stanford University's Cobb Track & Angell Field will be the venue for this year's 45th NIKE Prefontaine Classic/IAAF Diamond League meet on Sunday, June 30.With the ongoing construction of Hayward Field in advance of the 2020 U.S. Olympic Trials and the 2021 IAAF World Championships, an alternate site for America's flagship invitational meet was required. After an extensive search in...

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Selemon Barega is going to defend his two-mile title at the Prefontaine Classic at Stanford and Yomif added to mile field

Ethiopia’s Selemon Barega will return to the Prefontaine Classic to defend his two-mile title at the IAAF Diamond League meeting in Stanford on 30 June.

Barega, the 2016 world U20 champion, won the 2018 Diamond League 5000m title in 12:43.02, a time bettered only by the last three world record setters – two of whom ran before he was born.

Already this year, the 19-year-old has finished fifth at the World Cross Country Championships, first over 10,000m at the Ethiopian Championships and has recorded a season’s best of 12:53.04 for 5000m.

Olympic silver medallist Paul Chelimo finished second to Barega in the two-mile race at last year’s Prefontaine Classic. He may have one eye on the North American best of 8:07.07 set by Matt Tegenkamp in 2007.

Asian champion Birhanu Balew was the only athlete to beat Barega on the IAAF Diamond League circuit last year. The Bahraini runner, who finished third in this event at last year’s Pre Classic, will be looking to get the better of Barega once again.

Abadi Hadis, the 2017 world cross-country bronze medallist, recently came close to his 5000m PB with 12:56.48 in Rome. The versatile Ethiopian also equalled his half marathon PB of 58:44 earlier this year.

Olympic bronze medallist Hagos Gebrhiwet will be contesting the distance for the first time. The Ethiopian has finished third over 5000m in Shanghai and Rome so far this year and second over 10,000m in Stockholm.

World cross-country champion Joshua Cheptegei and fellow Ugandan Jacob Kiplimo are also in the field. Kiplimo finished 11th in this race last year, setting a national record of 8:25.17 – a time that should be within range for both men this time round.

Mo Ahmed, who last week lowered the Canadian 5000m record to 12:58.16, was also in last year’s Pre Classic two-mile race, finishing fourth.

Getaneh Molla made headlines earlier this year when he won the Dubai Marathon in 2:03:34, the fastest debut marathon in history. The Ethiopian will be moving down in distance in Stanford.

While younger brothers Filip and Jakob will line up for the mile in Stanford, older brother Henrik Ingebrigtsen will contest the two-mile event and will look to improve upon his 8:22.31 fifth-place finish from last year.

Others in the field include world U20 1500m record-holder Ronald Kwemoi, Olympic 10,000m silver medallist Paul Tanui, 2018 world 10,000m leader Richard Yator, world U20 cross-country champion Milkesa Mengesha, Australia’s Stewart McSweyn and Canada’s Justyn Knight.

In other Stanford-related news, world indoor record-holder Yomif Kejelcha has been added to the Bowerman Mile field.

(06/12/2019) ⚡AMP
by IAAF
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Prefontaine Classic

Prefontaine Classic

Stanford University's Cobb Track & Angell Field will be the venue for this year's 45th NIKE Prefontaine Classic/IAAF Diamond League meet on Sunday, June 30.With the ongoing construction of Hayward Field in advance of the 2020 U.S. Olympic Trials and the 2021 IAAF World Championships, an alternate site for America's flagship invitational meet was required. After an extensive search in...

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Impressive International field will be racing at the Prefontaine Classic at Stanford

World 5000m and cross-country champion Hellen Obiri will be making her sixth appearance at the Prefontaine Classic. She set meeting records at 1500m in 2013 and 2014, then won the 5000m in 2016.

The Kenyan, who won the 5000m IAAF Diamond League title in 2018, is undefeated this year and won the 3000m at the opening leg of the IAAF Diamond League in Doha earlier this month in a world-leading 8:25.60.

Multiple world record-holder and five-time world indoor champion Genzebe Dibaba has won all three of her past Pre Classic appearances and her 14:19.76 victory in 2015 is the fastest 5000m ever run in the US.

Sifan Hassan won the 1500m Diamond League trophy in 2015 and followed it with world indoor gold over the same distance in 2016. The Dutch athlete is one of the most versatile runners in history, boasting an 800m PB of 1:56.81 and a half marathon PB of 1:05:15. She also holds the European 5000m record and the world 5km record.

Olympic 10,000m champion and world record-holder Almaz Ayana will be competing in the US for the first time. The Ethiopian won the 2015 world 5000m title, 2016 5000m Diamond Trophy and 2017 world 10,000m title, but missed all of last year with a knee injury.

Obiri, Dibaba, Ayana and Hassan are among the seven fastest women of all time at 5000m, but this will be the first time they have all raced one another at any distance.

The addition of world and Olympic 800m champion Caster Semenya adds further interest. Although she has contested the distance in low-key domestic races in South Africa, this will be her first international 3000m race.

Ethiopia’s Letesenbet Gidey and Senbere Teferi, ranked eighth and ninth respectively on the world 5000m all-time list, are also in the field. Gidey is a two-time world U20 cross-country champion, while Teferi earned world silver medals at 5000m and cross country in 2015.

The field also includes two-time Ethiopian champion Fantu Worku, versatile Kenyan Caroline Chepkoech Kipkurui, world U20 cross-country champion Beatrice Chebet, 2017 world cross-country bronze medallist Lilian Kasait Rengeruk, double European indoor silver medallist Konstanze Klosterhalfen, 2016 European 5000m and 10,000m champion Yasmin Can, European 1500m bronze medallist Laura Weightman, six-time NCAA champion Karissa Schweizer and USA’s Rachel Schneider.

(05/22/2019) ⚡AMP
by IAAF
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Prefontaine Classic

Prefontaine Classic

Stanford University's Cobb Track & Angell Field will be the venue for this year's 45th NIKE Prefontaine Classic/IAAF Diamond League meet on Sunday, June 30.With the ongoing construction of Hayward Field in advance of the 2020 U.S. Olympic Trials and the 2021 IAAF World Championships, an alternate site for America's flagship invitational meet was required. After an extensive search in...

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Caster Semenya is going to run the 3000m at the Pre Classic, a distance she can race without reducing her testosterone levels

South African's Caster Semenya is scheduled to compete in the 3,000m at the Diamond League's Prefontaine Classic in Stanford, California on June 30.  This is a distance she can race without reducing her testosterone levels, however it is not really her distance at least not at this point.

Semenya, who has won two Olympic gold medals over 800m, has made it very clear that she will not take medication to lower her testosterone levels to comply with the new IAAF rules.

This race will be her first since the new rules went into effect.

Under the new regulations, female athletes with high natural levels of testosterone wishing to compete in events from 400m to a mile must medically limit that level to under 5 nmol/L, double the normal female range of below 2 nmol/L.

Barring an appeal, Semenya can no longer compete in her specialist event after she lost her appeal against the new rules, stating that the regulations were necessary to ensure fair competition.

Semenya will be part of a world class field at the Prefontaine Classic that includes world 5,000-metres champion Hellen Obiri, 2016 world indoor 1,500-metres champion Sifan Hassan, and 2018 world indoor 1,500 and 3,000-metres champion Genzebe Dibaba.

“It was a request from Caster Semenya’s agent asking if she could run a 3,000,” meet director Tom Jordan told Reuters. “Of course we said yes.”

Semenya became South African national champion over 5,000m in April, but her time is way off the leading runners in the world over that distance.

Semenya has a personal best of 9:36 for 3,000m, the slowest in the field.  Dibaba is the quickest in the field with a best of 8:16. 

The South African’s last race over 800 meters was in the Diamond League in Doha on May 3, when she cruised to victory in 1:54.98, nearly three seconds ahead of Burundi’s Francine Niyonsaba.

“I’m a crazy athlete, 800 meters is my calling, I believe in it, and that’s what I want to do,” she said after winning in Doha.

“I will switch races when I want to — no man can tell me what to do. I’m here for a purpose, if I want to switch events I switch them, but if someone wants me to switch them, that’s their own problem, not mine."

The Prefontaine Classic is being staged in Stanford, California this year while a new stadium is built in Eugene, Oregon for the 2021 world championships.

(05/21/2019) ⚡AMP
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Prefontaine Classic

Prefontaine Classic

Stanford University's Cobb Track & Angell Field will be the venue for this year's 45th NIKE Prefontaine Classic/IAAF Diamond League meet on Sunday, June 30.With the ongoing construction of Hayward Field in advance of the 2020 U.S. Olympic Trials and the 2021 IAAF World Championships, an alternate site for America's flagship invitational meet was required. After an extensive search in...

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My Best Runs founder Bob Anderson is the featured runner on Amby Burfoot's Lifetime Running website today

Bob Anderson is the featured profile today on Lifetime Running. 

As the founding publisher-owner of Runner's World magazine ("Making Tracks Since 1966"), Bob Anderson played a pivotal role in the American running boom. Less well known: He has been, and at age 71 remains, a passionate runner and racer. In recent years, Anderson has thrown his creative energy behind a Double Racing concept ("Running with a halftime break") and a free Running News Daily column which Bob edits.

Here are some excerpts from my interview: 

When did you start running and WHY?

I started running on Feb 16, 1962.  My older brother went out for cross country because my dad ran some in the Navy and I wanted to give it a try. Could not run without stopping after a mile that first day.

Your best races and running achievements?

One of the features on our Ujena Fit Club website is that it age grade all races. Five of my top races that I am most proud of would include when I ran a 1:25:24 half marathon at age 64. A 59:17 10 miler at age 53. A 17:09 5k at Carlsbad at age 49. A 3:32:17 marathon at Boston age 65. And a 2:08.5 880 at age 15.

But my greatest running achievement has to be when I ran 50 races in 2012 at age 64. My 50-race challenge was not just about finishing a race each weekend but it was also about achieving an average performance which would be at least 80% age graded. I raced 350.8 miles and averaged 6:59 per mile.

3 key tips for successful lifetime running?

1--Run or walk each day outside covering at least one mile.2--Don’t worry about speed unless you want too. Make this your choice.3--Run at least a few races each year. 

Favorite quote?

Steve Prefontaine: “To give anything less than your best is to sacrifice the gift.” 

What are the biggest lessons (life lessons and running lessons) you have learned from running?

Running is magical and makes everything possible. My day is not complete without a run. Running is just part of my DNA. If I had not found running, I can not imagine what kind of life I would have had. 

Age is only a number and even through the number is getting larger, I just don’t let a number tell me what I can or cannot do. We only live once, so why not enjoy it to the fullest?

Running helps add meaning to every day.  

After posting this on FB Gary Rush wrote:

If not for Bob Anderson and his magazine, and the stories and photos and dreams it inspired in my life- I likely would have not been a runner since age 14 or a marathoner since age 15...

Editor's Notes:

First Photo: with Linda Sereno at the San Juan Christmas 2018 Double Road Race (Dec 16, 2018).  Linda was awarded the Best Double Racer for 2018 the night before along with Dwayne Spencer.  Second Photo: finishing the 10k leg of a Double Road Race in Bali Indonesia with Ken Whyte from Ausutralia.

The next Double Racing event will be the Palo Alto Double 8K (5K+break=3k) on March 10, 2019. 

(01/10/2019) ⚡AMP
by Amby Burfoot
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Palo Alto 10K, 5K, Double 8K

Palo Alto 10K, 5K, Double 8K

The Palo Alto 10K, 5K and Double 8K (5k+break+3k) will be held in the Palo Alto Bayland Open Space on the west shore of San Francisco Bay. The Double 8K Run/Walk is a two-stage run (5K+Halftime+3K). The races will be run on a flat, fast course. The 5K and 10k courses are mostly on paved and hard-pack trials. The 3K...

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Steve Prefontaine’s sister’s favorite photo of her brother is not one of him crossing the finish line

Linda Prefontaine posted this on Facebook and got hundreds of likes and comments.  She wrote, “My favorite pictures of my brother are not of him crossing the finish line. They are pictures like this that show what a wonderful, warm and caring person he was. Like this photo of my brother and Gerry Lindgren.

“If you were the recipient of my brother's friendship and love , then you were a lucky person because the competitor Steve was fierce and bold but that was only a part of who Steve Prefontaine was. He was more than just a man running on the track.”

Hundreds of people posted comments.  Tom Lux wrote, “Linda. The first time I met your brother I had just arrived in Eugene.  I was by myself stretching on the track with nobody around. Steve came up to me and started asking about what I was doing.  

“His interest was genuine and abundant. He did not know me and I was a nobody.  Never talked about himself but only inquired about me.  Of course I was in total awe!”

Richard Leedom posted, “Yep--he was bold and fierce.  He was also emphatic about fighting for our sport.  Emboldened me to join his fight against the AAU, (led to my own battles with them).  He definitely had the passion.  

“But, he truly wanted to make a difference and, I don't know how many people aside from those who met or knew him, realized just how much he wanted to change things.  Thanks for sharing these moments.  Keeps us reminded why your brother truly deserved the iconic spot he has taken in the world of athletics--not just running.” 

Yes Linda, your brother Steve Prefontaine was one tough runner on the track but he was just one amazing, caring and thoughtful person as well off the track as you know. He had a big heart.  He died over 42 years ago because of a freak accident but he will never be forgotten for everything he accomplished on and off the track.

(01/07/2019) ⚡AMP
by Bob Anderson
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Will The 2019 Prefontaine Classic be moved to Stanford?

The Prefontaine Classic could be moving south. With its usual site, Hayward Field in Eugene, Ore., undergoing a massive reconstruction project, the US’s only Diamond League meet is in need of a new venue for 2019. In track & field circles, one venue’s name has popped up more than any other: Stanford University’s Cobb Track & Angell Field.

Something certainly appears to be in the works between Stanford and Pre as the officials’ calendar for the USATF Pacific Association lists the Prefontaine Classic as one of its meets with Stanford listed in the “site” column. The date of the meet is Sunday, June 30, which is what the Diamond League lists on its official calendar. 

Pre Classic press chief Jeff Oliver wrote that, “The Prefontaine Classic does not have a statement on the location of the 2019 meet at this time.

We are hopeful to make an official announcement later this month.”In addition to the annual Stanford and Payton Jordan Invitationals, Cobb Track & Angell Field hosted the USATF Outdoor Championships in 2002 and 2003."

According to Stanford’s website, it has a permanent capacity of 1,772, which would make it by far the smallest stadium to host a Diamond League (no other venue has fewer than 12,000 permanent seats; Stanford would presumably add temporary seating should it host the meet).

(01/05/2019) ⚡AMP
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NCAA champ Cheserek breaks course record on a frigid day at the Manchester Road Race, and Celliphine Chespol of Kenya wins for the women runners

In frigid conditions, Clutching hand warmers to fend off the frigid cold, Edward Cheserek broke the course record, winning the 82nd Manchester Road Race in 21:16 Thursday morning. Cheserek, a 17-time NCAA champion from Flagstaff, Ariz., broke the record for the 4.748-mile race set by Aaron Braun (21:19) in 2012. It was his first time running Manchester. “I looked at the time, it was 21:17 or 16 and I thought that’s really OK,” said Cheserek, 24, who didn’t know he broke the record until somebody told him. “That’s a very good time.” Cheserek broke away from the pack at the top of the Highland Street hill and ran alone down Main Street toward the finish. Last year’s champion Paul Chelimo was second and Andy Butchart, who defied the elements by wearing a singlet and shorts, was third. Celliphine Chespol of Kenya was the women’s winner, outkicking last year’s winner Buze Diriba and 2016 winner Emily Sisson at the finish. It was the first road race for Chespol, 19, who is a steeplechaser. She ran the third fastest time (8:58.78 in the 3,000 meter steepchase in May 2017 at the Prefontaine Classic. “I’m so happy because this is my first time to run a road race,” Chespol said. It was about 16 degrees at the start but the wind chill lowered the temperatures to single digits. About 12,000 people ran and walked Thursday. (11/22/2018) ⚡AMP
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Shelby Houlihan surges past three contenders to win the 1500m while Semenya placed sixth

Shelby Houlihan of the US ran a new PR and set a meet record in the 1,500m at Lausanne Diamond League today, with the UK’s Laura Muir finishing second and the Netherlands’ Sifan Hassan third. Houlihan clocked 3:57.54. Caster Semenya of South Africa was well back, finishing sixth, with a time of 4:00.44. It was the third straight 1,500m win for Houlihan, an Olympic 5,000m runner who is having an incredible outdoor season in 2018, winning the 1,500m at both the Prefontaine Classic on May 26 and the USATF Outdoor Championships on June 23. Semenya holds South Africa’s national record in the event (3:59.92, set at Doha Diamond League in May). She won the 800m and set a new PB, without benefit of a pace rabbit, at Paris Diamond League on June 30 (07/05/2018) ⚡AMP
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Steve Prefontaine’s spirit lives on in all of us even after 43 years

43 years ago the world lost Steve Prefontaine. We aren't inspired so much as by the races that he won, but by the way that he ran them. There were no sit and kick affairs on his watch. He went straight to the front and dared everyone else to keep up. When that wasn't enough he slowly increased the pace and left his opponents gasping for air and swimming in lactic acid. At the time of his death Steve held every American record from 2,000 meters to 10,000 meters.  He was a beloved son, brother, and friend to many.  RIP Steve. You are missed but your spirit lives on in all of us. (05/30/2018) ⚡AMP
by Dave Ross
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Tracktown USA hopes to be selected to host the USATF 2020 Olympic Trails

The University of Oregon says work will begin in June on a renovation of Hayward Field, to be completed in 2020. The plans include a 165-foot, 9-story tower named in honor of Bill Bowerman, the coach who brought Steve Prefontaine to campus and helped Phil Knight launch Nike. The work will be funded by Penny and Phil Knight and more than 50 other donors.  Tracktown USA made it clear Wednesday that they'll be making a bid to bring the 2020 Olympic Trials back to Hayward Field. USATF pulled its original bid from Mount SAC in California, due to concerns over the stadium construction.  Construction on the new Hayward Field will start this summer.  Tracktown USA CEO Michael Reilly says the new-look Hayward Field will be completed in plenty of time to host the 2020 Trials. "We understand everything is going to be ready to go for an entire Track and Field season in 2020," said Reilly. "I can't think of a better way to welcome America's top athletes than to bring them to a new Hayward Field."      (05/04/2018) ⚡AMP
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My brother presence electrified Hayward Field in a way that had never been done before, we can't tear down history

My name is Linda Prefontaine. Steve Prefontaine is my brother. I understand there is a City Council meeting on the 23rd and I’m hoping my letter can be read at that time in support of saving the history of Hayward Field. I moved to Eugene in 1973 to continue my education at the University of Oregon. When I moved to Eugene it was a nice, small college town. The atmosphere was laid back and the pace was pleasant. I thought I would live there until I died. Over the years the town has changed in many ways. Some of the changes were necessary because of the economy’s dependence on wood products that the town needed to move away from. Real growth and expansion of the business sector is very evident today. Another fact about the early days of Eugene is that my brother made Hayward Field come to life. His presence electrified Hayward Field in a way that had never been done before. People from all over the world came to Eugene to watch him compete. Today people from all over the world still come to Eugene to walk on the historic track at Hayward Field. They do because Steve Prefontaine ran on that track. They come because there is a history there that is magical and cannot be replaced or duplicated. When I attend track meets at HF I can still feel his presence. If Hayward Field is demolished along with the east grandstands I don’t think as many people will be drawn to come to Eugene and Hayward Field. Why would they? The history of Hayward Field will be taken away for ever. I probably won’t be attending as many meets there. It won’t be the same. I moved away from Eugene last fall, back to Coos Bay. I no longer like what Eugene has become and do not want to live in the atmosphere and the mindset of the city that exists today and what I fear it will become in the future. (04/21/2018) ⚡AMP
by Linda Prefontaine
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Steve Prefontaine's vision lives on

MBR FAST FACTS: Steve Prefonaine was the American record holder in every distance from 2,000 to 10,000 meters at the time of his death in May 1975. Pre traveled to Europe to race against the world's best. While competing in Scandinavia he was impressed by the the soft surface running trails. Alton Baker park seemed a natural location for a similar trail in Eugene, Oregon. He hoped the trail would allow him to safely train in Eugene, as well as help spread the influence of running. (12/23/2017) ⚡AMP
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