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Running News Daily is edited by Bob Anderson in Mountain View, California USA and team in Thika Kenya, La Piedad Mexico, Bend Oregon, Chandler Arizona and Monforte da Beira Portugal.  Send your news items to bob@mybestruns.com Advertising opportunities available.   Over one million readers and growing.  Train the Kenyan Way at KATA Running Retreat Kenya.  (Kenyan Athletics Training Academy) in Thika Kenya.  Opening in june 2024 KATA Running retreat Portugal.  Learn more about Bob Anderson, MBR publisher and KATA director/owner, take a look at A Long Run the movie covering Bob's 50 race challenge.  

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Articles tagged #Tristan Woodfine
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Popstar Lil Nas X runs NYC Half in high-tops

There were over 25,000 finishers at Sunday’s NYC Half Marathon, and one of the more notable ones was American popstar Lil Nas X, who did not make headlines by his finishing time, but by the shoes he wore during the race.

Lil Nas X, who entered the race under his real name, Montero Hill, finished the half in two hours and 32 minutes. What made his time impressive was that he ran that time in a pair of designer Coach high-top sneakers.

American running photographer Joe Hale tweeted a photo of Lil Nas X crossing the finish line in the high-tops, then proceeded to ask him what shoes he was wearing. The singer responded, “Some random pair of Coach shoes I always exercise in, so I decided why not [wear them].”

Although the Coach-branded high-tops won’t be making our list of “the best running shoes to go the distance in 2024,” Lil Nas X was incredibly proud of his result, posting “Hey, at least I made it,” to his Instagram story, where he was seen leaving the race in a wheelchair. We can only imagine how rough his shins must be feeling on Monday morning.

The 24-year-old singer, who won a Grammy Award for his massive hit “Old Town Road“ in 2020, might have some potential in the half once HOKA, On, or New Balance hooks him up with a pair of high-cushioned running shoes. Maybe, we will see him challenge the two-hour mark in his next half.

Although the Coach-branded high-tops won’t be making our list of “the best running shoes to go the distance in 2024,” Lil Nas X was incredibly proud of his result, posting “Hey, at least I made it,” to his Instagram story, where he was seen leaving the race in a wheelchair. We can only imagine how rough his shins must be feeling on Monday morning.

The 24-year-old singer, who won a Grammy Award for his massive hit “Old Town Road“ in 2020, might have some potential in the half once HOKA, On, or New Balance hooks him up with a pair of high-cushioned running shoes. Maybe, we will see him challenge the two-hour mark in his next half.

Canada’s Tristan Woodfine finished sixth overall in 63:50, one spot ahead of Ethiopian distance legend Kenenisa Bekele. Woodfine is training for the 2024 Boston Marathon on April 15.

(03/23/2024) Views: 314 ⚡AMP
by Running Magazine
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Malindi Elmore and Tristan Woodfine to run 2024 NYC Half

On Thursday, the New York Road Runners (NYRR) announced the field for the 2024 NYC Half on March 17, which will feature Canadian marathoners Malindi Elmore and Tristan Woodfine alongside 11 Olympians and one of the world’s most decorated distance runners, Ethiopia’s Kenenisa Bekele.

This will be Bekele’s first time at the NYC Half and only his second career road race in New York City. (He finished sixth at the TCS New York City Marathon in 2021.) Bekele is one of the most prolific runners of all time, having been at the top of the sport for more than two decades. His personal best of 2:01:41 from the 2019 Berlin Marathon still stands as the Ethiopian national record, and makes him the third-fastest marathoner in history.

Bekele will headline the men’s race alongside top U.S. marathoners Conner Mantz and Clayton Young, who are fresh off finishing first and second, respectively, at the U.S. Olympic Marathon Trials in Orlando, Fla., on Feb. 3. Also joining the men’s field is Cobden, Ont.’s Woodfine, who is coming off an impressive 2:10:39 personal best and sixth-place finish at the 2024 Houston Marathon. The 30-year-old is currently training for the 2024 Boston Marathon, where he hopes to place in the top five to potentially secure a spot on the Canadian Olympic marathon team in Paris.

The women’s elite field will be full of established distance runners, including Olympians Des Linden, Jenny Simpson, Edna Kiplagat and Elmore, who was recently nominated to her third Olympic Games. Elmore secured her spot on the Canadian team last fall with a 2:23:30 clocking at the 2023 Berlin Marathon, the second-fastest Canadian women’s marathon time. Like Woodfine, Elmore is also training for the 2024 Boston Marathon, which she hopes will prepare her for the hilly marathon course at the 2024 Paris Olympics, which is expected to be the hilliest Olympic marathon course to date.

The men’s and women’s elite field will lead more than 25,000 runners during the United Airlines NYC Half, the world’s premier half marathon, which runs from Brooklyn to Manhattan, passing historic landmarks, diverse neighbourhoods and sweeping views of The Big Apple before finishing in the middle of Central Park.

(02/24/2024) Views: 361 ⚡AMP
by Marley Dickinson
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United Airlines NYC Half-Marathon

United Airlines NYC Half-Marathon

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

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Chebet, Lemma and Geay to clash at Boston Marathon

Evans Chebet and Gabriel Geay, the top two finishers at last year’s BAA Boston Marathon, will return to the World Athletics Platinum Label road race on April 15, to take on recent Valencia Marathon winner Sisay Lemma.

Chebet successfully defended his Boston title last year in 2:05:54. In fact, the Kenyan has won six of his past seven marathons.

Lemma won in Valencia last month in 2:01:48, making him the fourth-fastest man in history. The Ethiopian, who also won the 2021 London Marathon, is the fastest man in this year’s Boston Marathon field, which features 20 men with sub-2:10 PBs.

Tanzania’s Geay, runner-up in Boston last year, has an identical PB to Chebet – 2:03:00 – and, like Chebet, it was also set in Valencia.

Other men in the field with sub-2:05 PBs are Kenya’s Joshua Belet (2:04:18), Ronald Korir (2:04:22), and Cyprian Kotut (2:04:34), as well as Ethiopians Haftu Teklu (2:04:43) and London and New York City runner-up Shura Kitata (2:04:49).

New York Marathon champion Albert Korir, former Japanese record-holder Suguru Osako, and Norwegian record-holder Sondre Moen are also in the field, as are Morocco’s Zouhair Talbi, winner of last week’s Houston Marathon in a course record 2:06:39, and multiple NCAA champion Edward Cheserek.

Elite field

Sisay Lemma (ETH) 2:01:48

Evans Chebet (KEN) 2:03:00

Gabriel Geay (TAN) 2:03:00

Joshua Belet (KEN) 2:04:18

Ronald Korir (KEN) 2:04:22

Cyprian Kotut (KEN) 2:04:34

Haftu Teklu (ETH) 2:04:43

Shura Kitata (ETH) 2:04:49

John Korir (KEN) 2:05:01

Mohamed Esa (ETH) 2:05:05

Suguru Osako (JPN) 2:05:29

Sondre Moen (NOR) 2:05:48

Filmon Ande (ERI) 2:06:38

Zouhair Talbi (MAR) 2:06:39

Isaac Mpofu (ZIM) 2:06:48

Albert Korir (KEN) 2:06:57

Kento Otsu (JPN) 2:08:15

Ryoma Takeuchi (JPN) 2:08:40

Segundo Jami (ECU) 2:09:05

Tsegay Tuemay (ERI) 2:09:07

Matt McDonald (USA) 2:09:49

David Nilsson (SWE) 2:10:09

Tristan Woodfine (CAN) 2:10:39

CJ Albertson (USA) 2:10:52

Chris Thompson (GBR) 2:10:52

Edward Cheserek (KEN) 2:11:07

Yemane Haileselassie (ERI) debut

(01/17/2024) Views: 369 ⚡AMP
by World Athletics
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Boston Marathon

Boston Marathon

Among the nation’s oldest athletic clubs, the B.A.A. was established in 1887, and, in 1896, more than half of the U.S. Olympic Team at the first modern games was composed of B.A.A. club members. The Olympic Games provided the inspiration for the first Boston Marathon, which culminated the B.A.A. Games on April 19, 1897. John J. McDermott emerged from a...

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Moh Ahmed withdraws from Houston Half Marathon due to hamstring injury

Moh Ahmed’s debut in the half-marathon will have to wait. He has withdrawn from this Sunday’s Aramco Houston Half Marathon after suffering a hamstring injury in his final tune-up workout.

“I am regretfully withdrawing from the Aramco Houston Half Marathon. In my final tune-up workout on Wednesday, I tweaked my hamstring/hip flexor a bit, such that my coach, Jerry Schumacher, and I felt it would be unwise to line up on Sunday,” said Ahmed in a statement Thursday.

Ahmed’s half-marathon debut was highly anticipated, given his Canadian records in the 5,000m and 10,000m on the track. He is the only Canadian distance runner to have medalled in the men’s 5,000m event at an Olympic Games (Tokyo 2020).

“After a great few months of training, I was really looking forward to testing myself over the streets of Houston against a great field, but it will have to wait until next year,” said Ahmed. Outside of a few local road races and winning the Canadian men’s 10K title last year, he has not raced the 21.1 or 42.2 km distance.

Rory Linkletter will be the lone Canadian athlete in the men’s elite half-marathon field. Linkletter is racing in Houston in preparation for the Sevilla Marathon on Feb. 18, aiming for the Olympic standard of 2:08:10. His personal best of 61:08 was set at this race in 2022 (a Canadian national record at the time). Ljnkletter’s PB is only 50 seconds behind the Canadian half marathon record of 60:18 held by Cam Levins.

Despite Ahmed’s withdrawal, there will still be a large Canadian presence in Houston. Four athletes will be chasing their Olympic dreams in the marathon. Leslie Sexton, 2016 Olympian Lanni Marchant, and Canadian marathon record holder Natasha Wodak will all have their goals on the women’s Olympic standard of 2:26:50, with two spots still open for Paris 2024.

On the men’s side, Tristan Woodfine from Cobden, Ont, returns to the marathon looking to break his personal best of 2:10:51, set three years ago at the London Marathon. The men’s Olympic standard for Paris is 2:08:10.

(01/12/2024) Views: 322 ⚡AMP
by Marley Dickinson
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Aramco Houston Half Marathon

Aramco Houston Half Marathon

The Chevron Houston Marathon offers participants a unique running experience in America's fourth largest city. The fast, flat, scenic single-loop course has been ranked as the "fastest winter marathon" and "second fastest marathon overall" by Ultimate Guide To Marathons. After 30 years of marathon-only competition, Houston added the half-marathon in 2002, with El Paso Energy as the sponsor. Today the...

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Four Canadian runners to chase Olympic dreams at Houston Marathon

As the 2024 Houston Marathon Weekend approaches, the spotlight is not only on the highly anticipated half-marathon debut of Canada’s Moh Ahmed, but also on the intense competition among four Canadian marathoners aiming to earn the Olympic qualifying standard for the 2024 Paris Olympic Games.

Wodak eyes Olympic standard

Canadian marathon record holder Natasha Wodak leads a strong Canadian contingent in Houston, all chasing the Olympic A standard of 2:26:50. Former national team athletes Leslie Sexton and Lanni Marchant will also be vying for the two available spots on the women’s marathon team.

Wodak holds the fastest Canadian women’s time in the last two years, but her Canadian record of 2:23:12 from the 2022 Berlin Marathon was outside the Olympic qualifying window. Wodak took another shot at achieving the time at the 2023 World Athletics Championships in Budapest, but warm conditions and a tactical race prevented her from earning a spot in Paris (she finished in the top 15, in  2:30:09).

Sexton returns to the marathon after a break from the distance of a year and a half. Sexton ran 2:28 twice in a 10-month period, winning the 2021 Philadelphia Marathon and finishing as the top Canadian at the 2022 World Athletics Championships in Eugene, Ore. ((she finished 13th). With a best of 2:28:35, she would need to shake off almost two minutes to solidify her spot in Paris. But the fast Houston course (which she has raced before) could provide what she needs.

Also returning to the marathon after a long hiatus is 2016 Olympian Lanni Marchant. The London, Ont., native holds a personal best of 2:28:00 from Toronto in 2013, but there are a lot of questions around her fitness, after racing only twice in 2023. Marchant would need a career-best performance to earn her a spot on the Canadian Olympic team for 2024.

Malindi Elmore of Kelowna, B.C., is the only Canadian woman to have achieved the Olympic standard of 2:26:50 at the 2023 Berlin Marathon. Elmore was also the top North American female finisher in 2:23:30, achieving an 80-second personal best.

Ontario’s Tristan Woodfine takes another shot

After thinking he had a spot on the Canadian Olympic team for Tokyo, then having it taken from him in the final week of qualifying by Cam Levins and Athletics Canada, Tristan Woodfine is heading to Houston for another shot at his dream of being on Team Canada for the Olympics. Woodfine’s personal best came on a cold and wet day at the 2020 London Marathon, clocking 2:10:51. Since 2020, he has had his struggles with the marathon distance and beating that mark.

After tough luck with the heat and his stomach at the 2022 Ottawa Marathon, Woodfine switched coaches and spent most of the 2023 season building his speed on the roads. He recorded personal bests of 14:05 for 5K and 29:06 for 10K. Only two Canadian men have ever broken 2:10 in the marathon: Trevor Hofbauer and Levins.

Levins cemented his spot on the Canadian Olympic team for Paris at his record-setting run at the 2023 Tokyo Marathon. To this day, he is the only Canadian marathoner to have run under the men’s Olympic A standard of 2:08:10. (He also did so at the 2022 World Championships.)

How to follow

The 2024 Chevron Houston Marathon is scheduled for Jan. 14. It is one of the fastest marathon courses in North America; in 2020, Elmore set the previous Canadian marathon record of 2:24:50 there. The last Canadian marathoner to win the Houston Marathon was Mississauga’s Peter Fonseca, who ran 2:11:52 for the win in 1995.

(01/09/2024) Views: 382 ⚡AMP
by Marley Dickinson
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Chevron Houston Marathon

Chevron Houston Marathon

The Chevron Houston Marathon offers participants a unique running experience in America's fourth largest city. The fast, flat, scenic single-loop course has been ranked as the "fastest winter marathon" and "second fastest marathon overall" by Ultimate Guide To Marathons. Additionally, with more than 200,000 spectators annually, the Chevron Houston Marathon enjoys tremendous crowd support. Established in 1972, the Houston Marathon...

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Moh Ahmed, Cam Levins to face off at Ottawa 10K

Two of the fastest distance runners in Canadian history will go head-to-head.

Tamarack Ottawa Race Weekend will once again host the Canadian 10K Championships in 2023, and as always, this is an event that no runner or fan will want to miss. Two of the best distance runners in Canadian history, Cam Levins and Moh Ahmed, will headline the men’s race alongside former national champions. And four of the top five women from last year’s championships are returning, making the Ottawa 10K one of the most anticipated races on the 2023 event calendar.

It’s an equally fun and exciting race for non-elites, as the 10K follows a beautiful course through Ottawa, one of Canada’s most beautiful cities. The 2023 Tamarack Ottawa Race Weekend is set for May 27 and 28.

The elite fields

Canadian Olympic marathoner Dylan Wykes has been the elite athlete co-ordinator at Run Ottawa for four years, but due to the pandemic, the 2023 race weekend will mark only the second in-person edition of the event he has worked on since taking over the role in early 2020. Wykes says this year’s race will be a special one, as “the best 10K runners in the country will be hitting the streets of Ottawa.”

Headlining the event are Levins and Ahmed, neither of whom have ever competed at Ottawa Race Weekend. Ahmed, a 2020 Olympic medallist in the 5,000m, holds the Canadian record for 10,000m (26:34.14 on the track), but has not yet raced on the roads in his professional career. Ahmed is amped about the opportunity to kick off his 2023 season at the Ottawa 10K and make his road-racing debut.

Levins told race organizers he’s eager to check the Ottawa 10K off his bucket list. “The opportunity to run in such a competitive field in Canada is really great,” Levins said. “Ottawa has always been an event at which I’ve wanted to race.” Joining Ahmed and Levins in the men’s field are 2:10 marathoner Tristan Woodfine, U Sports cross-country champion Max Turek, Canadian cross-country champion Connor Black and others. 

The women’s field is equally stacked, with four of the top five women from the 2022 Ottawa 10K returning to this year’s championship race. Natasha Wodak, who won last year’s race, will not be back to defend her title, but second-place Leslie Sexton, third-place Sasha Gollish, fourth-place Emily Setlack and fifth-place Cleo Boyd are all in the lineup and ready to fight for the win. “It’s a really great group of women,” Wykes says, pointing out that the field spans more than 15 years in age. “All these women have great stories and are an inspiration. 

“This is a great opportunity for fans of the sport to see [these athletes] in action,” Wykes continues, pointing to Ahmed and Levins, who headline the men’s 10K field. “Levins is performing incredibly well right now, as well as any Canadian ever has on the roads at the world level, so it’s an exciting opportunity for fans of the sport to get to see him compete on home soil.”

Wykes adds that the 10K isn’t the only spectacle for fans who will be in Ottawa on May 27 and 28. “The entire weekend is a great opportunity to see some of the world’s best runners,” he says. “Our marathon is a World Athletics Elite Label event and will have athletes from three of the best marathoning nations in the world: Ethiopia, Kenya and Japan.” 

The race

For runners who aren’t looking to go sub-30 at the Ottawa 10K, this is still a great race. One detail Wykes points out that makes it unique is the race’s start time. “I think it is special because it is an evening race,” he says. “Most road races are held in the morning, so there is definitely a bit of a different feel to things when the race is in the evening.” 

Wykes says fans are “a bit rowdier” than they might be at the crack of dawn, and he says there’s “a bit more of a party atmosphere.” This all adds up to a great night of adrenaline, fast racing and post-race fun. 

The race starts on Elgin Street, not far from Parliament Hill, and takes runners down to the Rideau Canal. “Elgin Street is lined with patios and restaurants,” Wykes says, so there are plenty of people to cheer runners on as they kick off the race. Once at the Rideau Canal, runners follow the water all the way to Dows Lake, then cross a bridge and head for the finish on the other side.

“The final mile of the race is packed with fans along the Pretoria Bridge and Colonel By Drive,” Wykes says. “I’m getting excited now, just thinking about it.” 

(05/11/2023) Views: 660 ⚡AMP
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Ottawa 10K

Ottawa 10K

Ottawa's course is fast, scenic and few elevation changes. Considered to be an excellent course for first timers and should provide an environment conducive to setting a PR. The Ottawa 10K is the only IAAF Gold Label 10K event in Canada and one of only four IAAF Gold Label 10Ks in the world. The Ottawa 10K attracts one of the...

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Ethiopians will be vying for course records at 2022 Tartan Ottawa International Marathon

Ethiopia will again be favored to win when the Ottawa International Marathon returns to an in-person event on Sunday, May 29th.

Indeed, the Ethiopian women are expected to extend their 10-year winning streak as they vye to break the course record (CR) of 2:22:17, set in 2018 by returning champion Geleta Burka. Burka will be challenged by the 2019 defending champion, Tigist Girma, who has since run twice under 2:20

These blistering fast women will be challenged by countrywoman Bruktayit Eshetu who finished 2nd in the 2019 Toronto Waterfront Marathon with a personal best of 2:22:40 and Juliet Chekwel of Uganda, who recorded a national record of 2:23:13 in her marathon debut two years ago.

Returning to Ottawa will be Lanni Marchant who broke the 28-year-old national record in 2013 by running it in exactly 2:28:00. Marchant will be heading off against Dayna Pidhoreski, the 2019 Canadian marathon champion with a personal best of 2:29:03.

Unprecedented depth of field in the men’s event

On the men’s side, Ottawa’s new Elite Athlete Coordinator Dylan Wykes, a 2012 Canadian Olympian, has assembled an unprecedented depth of field on Canadian soil. No fewer than eight of the men lining up on the start line will be boasting personal bests under 2:08, with three of them having recently run 2:06 or faster. The course record, set by fellow Ethiopian Yemane Tsegaye in 2014 is 2:06:54.

Wykes will be looking for return competitor Adugna Takele (2:05:57) and his fellow Ethiopian competitors Tsegaye Getachew Kebede (2:05:11) and Andualem Belay Shiferaw (2:05:52) to compete for that CR. The Ethiopians could see a fight from Kenyan Alex Kibet who recently won the Berlin Half Marathon with a personal best of 58:55, indicating his preparations are going well.

“It’s been an interesting challenge to build this start list with so little in-person competition over the past two years,” said Dylan Wykes, the Elite Athlete Coordinator. “Based on what we’ve seen recently with these athletes, and with how fast road races have been generally, I think we are quite likely to see some very fast times on May 29th. I can’t wait.”

The top Canadian in the men’s field is Tristan Woodfine, who was 10th in the 2018 Ottawa Marathon and will be seeking a top 10 finish.

(05/05/2022) Views: 893 ⚡AMP
by Paul Gains
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Ottawa Marathon

Ottawa Marathon

As one of two IAAF Gold Label marathon events in Canada, the race attracts Canada’s largest marathon field (7,000 participants) as well as a world-class contingent of elite athletes every year. Featuring the beautiful scenery of Canada’s capital, the top-notch organization of an IAAF event, the atmosphere of hundreds of thousands of spectators, and a fast course perfect both...

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Canadian Cam Levins dips under Tokyo marathon standard with a week to spare

Canada's Cam Levins raced Sunday knowing it was his last shot. Two previous failed attempts lingered in the back of his mind. He ran in the rain, and all alone for the last 25 kilometers, conditions not conducive to fast times.

"(But) nothing was going to stop me today is what I told myself," Levins said.

The 32-year-old from Black Creek, B.C., finally dipped under the Tokyo Olympic standard in the marathon with just a week to spare. Levins, the Canadian record-holder in the event, ran two hours 10 minutes 30 seconds to win the S7 Marathon in the mountains in Styria, Austria.

The qualifying standard of 2:11.30 had to be accomplished before June 1.

Levins had been well on pace twice in the past seven months, in London in October, and then in Chandler, Ariz., in December. But both times, he hit the proverbial wall with a few kilometers to go. He dropped out in London and finished almost a minute off the standard in Arizona.

"In both (races) I was feeling fine until I very, very suddenly wasn't, could barely move," he said.

He was feeling "great" again on Sunday, "but I certainly thought about (the previous two attempts) as I was coming up to 34, 35K," Levins said. "I went past it and continued to feel great, and it was a pretty emotional moment getting through that and knowing that I was going to be OK."

Levins said a big part of the problem in his previous two attempts was his fuelling - not eating enough in the few days pre-race.

"I was a little concerned about putting on excess weight when I'm not training as much leading into the marathon, so the week before the race, I was careful about what my intake was," he said. "(This week), I just kind of threw that out the window, and said, 'You know what? I'm not going to worry about that.'"

He tested out his theory in a fast half-marathon time trial last month.

Sunday's conditions on an empty Austrian highway - it's currently under construction - made his performance all the more impressive.

t rained most of the way. At the 25-kilometer mark the rain was coming down in sheets.

And neither of his two pace-setters were keeping proper pace. One dropped out just five kilometers in. The other stepped off the course when Levins passed him with more than 25 kilometers left to go.

"I had to go past 17 or 18 but he was already off pace and I needed to go. So a lot of that race was by myself," Levins said. "So, I think I have lots left in the tank."

The time doesn't guarantee Levins a spot on the Tokyo Olympic team, as four Canadians have qualified and Canada can only take three.

Trevor Hofbauer is the only Canadian guaranteed a spot after winning the Canadian championship. Ben Preisner (2:10.17) and Tristan Woodfine (2:10.51) have also run the Olympic standard.

"I hope I'm selected," he told The Canadian Press from Austria. "But I definitely feel like I've done everything that I can today, and I'm proud of my effort no matter what. Hopefully this gets me on the Olympic team. I definitely did everything I could. And I'm very happy and proud of that."

(05/24/2021) Views: 1,163 ⚡AMP
by Canadian Press
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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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With fewer than 100 days until the Olympics, Canadian athletes are running out of time to qualify for Tokyo.

The end of the qualification period is even closer, and Olympic hopefuls in the marathon only have until May 31 to book their tickets to the Games, which begin just under two months later on July 23. With only two spots officially taken on the Canadian Olympic marathon team, four remain up for grabs, but with racing opportunities becoming more and more scarce, it looks like the team headed to Tokyo could be set. Here’s how the Canadian squad looks right now, plus other athletes on the outside looking in. 

Trevor Hofbauer and Dayna Pidhoresky are the only two Canadian marathoners who have been able to breathe easily in the past 18 months, after they both won at the Canadian Olympic Marathon Trials in Toronto in October 2019. Hofbauer won the men’s race in the second-fastest time in Canadian history, posting a massive PB of 2:09:51. His run, which was well under the Olympic standard of 2:11:30, locked him in as the first member of the Canadian team headed to Tokyo. 

Not long after Hofbauer crossed the finish line, Pidhoresky won her spot alongside him on the Canadian team. Like Hofbauer, she also ran a huge PB, crossing the line ahead of the Olympic standard of 2:29:30 and breaking the tape in 2:29:03. While some athletes have put themselves in great positions to be named to the Olympic team, Pidhoresky and Hofbauer are the only two who know with 100 per cent certainty that they will be in Tokyo this summer. 

Hit standard 

Rachel Cliff was the first Canadian to hit standard in the qualifying period after she broke the Canadian marathon record with a 2:26:56 run in Japan in March 2019. This was more than a minute quicker than the previous national record of 2:28:00 (set by Lanni Marchant in 2013), and at the time, it looked like it was more than enough to guarantee Cliff’s spot on the Canadian Olympic team.

Then Malindi Elmore shattered the national best once more, lowering it to a remarkable time of 2:24:50 at the Houston Marathon in January 2020. This was an amazing and unexpected result from Elmore, and it immediately shot her to the top of the list of eligible runners to send to Tokyo. Even so, Cliff’s 2:26:56 result still looked like it would get her to the Games, but then Natasha Wodak ran an incredible 2:26:19 at The Marathon Project in Arizona in December. The run was Wodak’s first crack at the marathon since her debut in 2013, and it suddenly put her in the third and final position for the Canadian Olympic marathon team. 

On the men’s side, matters are much simpler, as only two runners (other than Hofbauer) have hit Olympic standard. Tristan Woodfine was the first to do so, running a PB of 2:10:51 at the elite-only London Marathon in October. A couple of months later, Ben Preisner ran his official marathon debut at The Marathon Project, where he recorded a 2:10:17 finish, which is the fourth-fastest time in Canadian history. Unless someone else runs Olympic standard in the next month, Woodfine and Preisner will join Hofbauer in Tokyo. 

Outside looking in

Despite running one of the best marathons in Canadian history, Cliff is now the third-best option to fill one of the spots for the Summer Games. Also in the conversation is Lyndsay Tessier, who qualified for the Games with her top-10 finish at the 2019 World Athletics Championships in Doha, Qatar. In a brutally hot race held in the middle of the night in Doha, Tessier battled for 42K, sticking at the back of the pack for most of the run. While many of her competitors that night dropped out due to the heat, Tessier stuck with it, eventually passing much of the field and climbing to ninth place. 

Like Cliff, though, Tessier’s result will be measured against those of Elmore and Wodak. Of course, it’s up to Athletics Canada to pick the team, but based on their individual times, it looks like Elmore and Wodak will be the two women who will join Pidhoresky on the start line in Tokyo. 

In the men’s race to Tokyo, the next runners on the list are Cam Levins and Rory Linkletter. Levins is the Canadian marathon record holder, but he ran his PB of 2:09:25 in 2018, several months before the Olympic qualification window opened. Since then, he has missed Olympic standard on three occasions, running 2:15:01 at the Canadian Olympic Trials, registering a DNF at the 2020 London Marathon and posting a 2:12:15 finish at The Marathon Project. Linkletter has only run two marathons, with his second coming at The Marathon Project as well. There, he ran close to a four-minute PB, but he wasn’t fast enough to hit standard, crossing the line in 2:12:54. 

Time is running out for any athletes hoping to nab a spot on the Canadian marathon team headed to Tokyo, and anyone who’s on the outside looking in better take a chance soon, although at this point, finding an official race could be the most difficult part of the entire process. 

(04/23/2021) Views: 1,229 ⚡AMP
by Ben Snider-McGrath
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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 start list of elite runners for Valencia Marathon and Half Marathon is quite impressive, especially in the case of the women

The Valencia half and full marathons are set to run on December 6 as elite-only races, and they will make for a must-see event. The start lists are quite impressive, especially in the case of the women, where the fields might be even stronger than they were at the London Marathon.

On the men’s side, the fields will see over 30 runners with personal bests under 2:10. Evan Esselink is the lone Canadian representative. The 2:18 marathoner will be looking to run a personal best and possibly secure the Olympic qualification time of 2:11:30. Two Canadian men have secured standard thus far – Trevor Hofbauer and Tristan Woodfine. 

Esselink first appeared on the roads in 2015 when he ran a 1:04:53 half-marathon in Indianapolis. He has since lowered his personal best considerably, running a 1:02:17 in 2019. He’s run only one marathon, finishing STWM 2019 in 2:18:38. 

The women’s field

In the half-marathon, one of the world’s greatest-ever track runners Genzebe Dibaba is making her debut alongside Letesenbet Gidey, the new 5,000m world record-holder. Emily Sisson will also be in the mix, one of America’s budding new talents on the road. Sisson has a 1:07:30 personal best in the event (and has run a 2:23 marathon). 

The marathon field includes headliners Joyciline Jepkosgei, Ruti Aga, Peres Jepchirchir and American Jordan Hasay. Jepkosgei is the 10K world record-holder, Aga is one of the fastest-ever women’s marathoners (2:18:34), Jepchirchir is the reigning world half-marathon champion and Hasay has been hunting the American marathon record for over two years. While Hasay owns the second-fastest women’s marathon time in U.S. history, her recent results have been disappointing by her standards. The runner most recently finished 26th at the U.S. Olympic Marathon Trials in February 2020. 

The marathon fields will see a total of 35 runners with personal bests under 2:10 – a remarkably deep field, running at a pace that is sure to see many people qualify for the Olympics. Beyond running standard, the top 10 men and women in the marathon will automatically achieve standard as this is a platinum-level race.  The front runners will be 2:02 marathoner Birhanu Legese, Lawrence Cherono and Lelisa Desisa.

(11/10/2020) Views: 1,285 ⚡AMP
by Madeleine Kelly
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VALENCIA TRINIDAD ALFONSO

VALENCIA TRINIDAD ALFONSO

The Trinidad Alfonso EDP Valencia Marathon is held annually in the historic city of Valencia which, with its entirely flat circuit and perfect November temperature, averaging between 12-17 degrees, represents the ideal setting for hosting such a long-distance sporting challenge. This, coupled with the most incomparable of settings, makes the Valencia Marathon, Valencia, one of the most important events in...

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Canadians Reid Coolsaet, Dylan Wykes & Rob Watson will return to the Scotiabank Toronto Waterfront Marathon

Three very familiar faces will be among the outstanding Canadian entries for the Scotiabank Toronto Waterfront Marathon October 20th, all lured by the Athletics Canada National Championship which runs concurrently in this IAAF Gold Label race.

Moreover, this year’s event also serves as Canada’s Olympic trials with the ‘first past the post' earning an automatic spot on the team bound for Tokyo provided he or she has achieved the Olympic standard (2:11:30/2:29:30).

Two-time Olympian Reid Coolsaet will seek a third berth, Dylan Wykes a second and Rob Watson, a three-time World Championships performer, relishes the challenge of earning another podium finish. The ‘three amigos’ between them have won twenty-one national titles.

Coolsaet turned 40 on July 29th and acknowledges his best days are behind him - he is Canada’s third fastest marathoner of all time with a 2:10:28 personal record - but believes he has the experience to make the team for Tokyo. "Yeah, it is my goal, I am totally focused on making the Olympics," said Coolsaet, who has run under 2:11:30 six times in his career. "It’s definitely my main motivation for training as hard as I do in the marathon.

"If it wasn’t for the 2020 Olympics, knowing I am not really looking for a PB anymore, I think I would have moved to the trails last year. I am happy to train this hard knowing the reward would mean a lot to me."

With Cam Levins (2:09:25) also returning to the site of his dramatic Canadian record-breaking performance, Coolsaet realises that something would have to go seriously wrong for Levins to miss the automatic place. Still, he remains optimistic he has a chance.

"I know what it takes to run the level I need to run to potentially qualify for the Olympics," Coolsaet says believing a 2:12:30 might be good enough to earn a place through the IAAF ranking system.

"Although I don’t want to get hurt, I don’t want to sell myself short and think ‘what if?’ I am going to be smart about my training and listen to my body. "I am not going to run quite as much mileage as in the past. But I know I can’t let being 40 be an excuse to back off my training because I can't handle it or something like that. Although there will be some slight changes, they are going to be very slight."

Wykes who was Canada’s top finisher in the 2012 Olympic marathon (20th in 2:15:26) has a personal best of 2:10:47 making him the fourth fastest Canadian of all time. Many were surprised by his return. After failing to make the Rio Olympic team he effectively retired to focus on his family - he and his wife Francine have two young children - and his coaching business ‘Mile2Marathon’.

Coach Richard Lee had once declared that he doubted Wykes would ever want to put himself through the disruption which ultimately led to his place on the 2012 London Olympic team. He made three attempts to achieve the standard sacrificing much in the process. His 2:10:47 came at the 2016 Rotterdam Marathon. Reminded of this the now 36-year old laughs.

"It’s certainly taken a few years to wrap my head around things and realize I am probably not going to do it again if it’s like the buildup was to London," he admits. "I would be lying if I said Tokyo wasn’t in the back of my mind. But I think I am trying to see things less ‘big picture’ and trying to focus on staying healthy and getting to the finish line in Toronto.

"If Cam Levins is on his game he’s in a different stratosphere. But I guess guys like Tristan Woodfine, Reid, Trevor Hofbauer, these kind of guys, if I am going well, I will mix it up with them.That is kind of what I am most excited about."

Following the 2012 Olympics, Wykes’ motivation was at a peak. The London experience had left him excited with endless possibilities to set about achieving. But there were obstacles that cropped up along the way. "I was as focused or more focused after London as any time in my career and the years between London and Rio were going to be my best," he reveals. "But a lot of that was injuries and kind of biting off more than I could chew.

"Some of that had to with the buildup to London and having to run so many marathons. And I made the silly mistake of trying to chase down (Jerome Drayton’s Canadian record). After London that became my focus. And, when I didn’t make Rio, I was kind of done."

A year ago Wykes and his family moved east from Vancouver after Francine received a post-doctoral position at Carleton University. Together with Rob Watson he coaches runners of all abilities through their company ‘Mile2Marathon’. With over 200 clients and ten coaches it is a thriving business. Somewhere along the way he rediscovered his own love for disciplined training. At his peak Watson achieved a personal best of 2:13:29 at the 2013 Scotiabank Toronto Waterfront Marathon.

(08/02/2019) Views: 1,986 ⚡AMP
by Paul Gains
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TCS Toronto Waterfront Marathon

TCS Toronto Waterfront Marathon

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

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Olympian and Canadian 3,000m steeplechase record holder Matt Hughes won the Boxing Day 10 mile in 48:05

The 98th annual Boxing Day 10 was held today December 26 in Hamilton, Ont. The race draws huge crowds of runners to brave the cold temperatures and run an off distance road race.

Among the runners were Olympics, Canadian record holders and national champions. The conditions were much better than the 2017 event, which saw temperatures as low as -22 degrees celsius (-6F). 

Wednesday’s event saw relatively mild temperature which hovered around zero degrees C (32F). The runners certainly weren’t wearing shorts last year.

Olympian and Canadian 3,000m steeplechase record holder Matt Hughes won the 10 mile clocking 48:05.  He also won last year. 

He was followed by Tristan Woodfine in 48:09 and Mike Tate in 48:38. Marathoner Reid Coolsaet finished fourth in 49:37.

In the women’s race Robyn Mildren took the title for the second year in a row clocking 55:46, second place went to Victoria Coates in 56:57 and third place to Mengistu Emebet in 59:34.

(12/26/2018) Views: 1,581 ⚡AMP
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