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Organizers pivot focus to virtual race at 2020 Honolulu Marathon cancelled due to the coronavirus

Citing the ongoing coronavirus pandemic, the 2020 Honolulu Marathon has been cancelled, organizers announced.

“We are of course very disappointed to have to cancel the race due to the ongoing Covid situation,” Honolulu Marathon CEO and President Jim Barahal wrote in a statement.

This is the first time that the marathon will not be held since the inaugural race in 1973.

Organizers said that before they made the decision to cancel the event, they were in discussion with the City and County of Honolulu.

“The team has worked hard to find ways to conduct a safe and socially distanced event, but all stakeholders agree that the appropriate and safest course of action is not to conduct the 2020 Honolulu Marathon, Start to Park 10 and Kalakaua Merrie Mile in December,” Barahal wrote.

Instead, organizers will pivot their focus to a safer venture: the Honolulu Marathon Virtual Beachfest.

Officials said that the virtual race will allow anyone in the world to complete the race from their own home. There will be a virtual festival that will feature training videos, cooking demos and even music from Hawaii.

But for those who are hoping for an in-person event, organizers said that they would consider rescheduling the marathon in the first half of 2021.

“In the case that we are able to reschedule, entrants can defer to either the rescheduled date or the December 2021 Honolulu Marathon,” organizers wrote.

(10/23/2020) ⚡AMP
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Honolulu Marathon

Honolulu Marathon

The Honolulu Marathon’s scenic course includes spectacular ocean views alongside world-famous Waikiki Beach, and Diamond Head and Koko Head volcanic craters.The terrain is level except for short uphill grades around Diamond Head. ...

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For third consecutive time Brighton Marathon postponed until autumn 2021

A major marathon has been pushed back for a third time after organizers said it had become clear it would "not be possible" for the run to be held next spring.

The Brighton Marathon Weekend will now be held between September 10 and September 12, 17 months after the event was originally scheduled to take place.

The reason for the second postponement is the rising coronavirus infection rate in the UK, with Prime Minister Boris Johnson saying more stringent lockdown restrictions introduced in September to stop the resurgence of the disease could remain in place for six months.

While the further delay of the popular race will disappoint many runners looking to chase new personal bests on Brighton and Hove's notoriously fast and flat route, event director Tim Naylor warned the further postponement of the marathon would have far-reaching impacts on the people of the city.

He said: "The Brighton Marathon Weekend extends far beyond our participants.

"The livelihoods of our staff, contractors, suppliers, hospitality industry and more, will be affected.

"When 20,000 people do not arrive in the city ready to run a race with their supporters, the ripple effect is great.

"From the bar staff in the hotels who do not pick up extra shifts to the taxi driver who does not take extra bookings.

"In 2019, it was estimated our event contributed £12 million to the local hospitality economy alone.

"Events are also a crucial lifeline for charities and fundraising.

"Since our first event in 2010 we have supported local and national charities in raising more than £50 million."

"I’d also like to personally thank the thousands of runners and riders who are sticking with us from 2020 in to 2021. Your moral support has been vital. Your financial support, by deferring your entries or choosing to take place in The Edit, has been invaluable and we are extremely grateful.

"We are a small team, many of whom are yet to even experience working at the Brighton Marathon Weekend on event weekend. Your countless messages of support and encouragement have kept us all going during this extremely difficult time.

"Thank you for your unrelenting understanding and patience. We cannot wait to see you across the finish line in 2021."

(10/23/2020) ⚡AMP
by Harry Bullmore
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Brighton Marathon

Brighton Marathon

The Brighton Marathon is one of the UK’s favorite marathons. With stunning coastal scenery in one of the country’s most energetic cities, this is the perfect race for runners with all different levels of experience. The fast and beautiful course of the Brighton Marathon makes this a ‘must do’on any runners list. Come and experience it for yourself over 26.2...

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The 2020 Boston Marathon virtual experience raises $32 million for charity

The 2020 Boston Marathon Virtual Experience, held in September, raised $32.1 million for 242 charity programs, according to a joint statement from race organizer Boston Athletic Association and primary race patron John Hancock Financial. This year's haul brings the Boston Marathon's life-to-date fundraising total to $400 million since the program's inception in 1989.

"In a year when runners and supporters have faced countless challenges, all have remained determined to finish strong and make a difference within the community," said Boston Athletic Association CEO Tom Grilk through the statement. "We are immensely proud of each and every participant whose fundraising contributions will serve a meaningful purpose supporting 242 non-profit and charity organizations. To achieve the $400 million milestone in total funds raised adds even more meaning to this year's event, where Boston Marathoners brought the spirit of Boston to the world."

The 2020 Boston Marathon, traditionally held on the third Monday in April, was first postponed from April 20 to September 14 due to the pandemic, but was later cancelled when both city and race officials determined that it would be impossible to hold the race safely. Organizers switched to a virtual format, and over 16,000 runners from 83 countries and all 50 states ran their own 42.195-kilometer races between September 5 and 14. Many incorporated charity fundraising into their personal marathons.

"The Boston Marathon is a tradition in this city; it is the oldest, the toughest and the most iconic," remarked Marianne Harrison, President and CEO of John Hancock through the statement. "We're proud to be part of the race's history and community impact as part of our 35-year partnership. Although this year's race was different, runners came together to cross their own finish lines and collectively lift up each other and the non-profits they represent."

Marathon running is a critical part of charity fundraising, globally, and the staging of virtual running events has helped keep charitable contributions going during the pandemic. For perspective, the 2019 Virgin Money London Marathon raised £66.4 million ($87.0 million), a single-day world record for charity fundraising. The 2019 TCS New York City Marathon raised $45 million, and the 2019 Boston Marathon raised $38.7 million.

(10/22/2020) ⚡AMP
by David Monti
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Boston Marathon

Boston Marathon

The 125th Boston Marathon originally scheduled for April 19 was postponed to October 11, 2021. 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,...

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Frankfurt Marathon continues partnership with Mainova

The Mainova corporation and the Frankfurt Marathon have announced they will continue their sponsorship agreement until 2024. The regional energy supplier has been title sponsor of the oldest German city marathon since 2016.

After the cancellation of the mass marathon this year due to coronavirus – a virtual race will take place on the scheduled date – Mainova will remain a partner of the classic race on the River Main for at least four more editions.

Race director Jo Schindler said: “It is a welcome and significant signal that Mainova is standing by us for the long term. In times such as these, where in many cases sport sponsorship is being reduced and some race organisers worry whether they can continue, such support should not be taken for granted. The extension of our cooperation gives us the security we need to be able to plan a wonderful marathon in the years ahead.”

Mainova is the biggest energy provider in the federal state of Hessen and supplies electricity, gas and water to more than a million people.

The 39th edition of the Mainova Frankfurt Marathon will take place on 31 October 2021.

(10/22/2020) ⚡AMP
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Mainova Frankfurt Marathon

Mainova Frankfurt Marathon

Frankfurt is an unexpectedly traditional and charming city, with half-timbered buildings huddled in its quaint medieval Altstadt (old city), cosy apple wine taverns serving hearty regional food, village-like neighbourhoods filled with outdoor cafes, boutiques and street art, and beautiful parks, gardens and riverside paths. The city's cache of museums is second in Germany only to Berlin’s, and its nightlife...

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2020 Non-contact Seoul Marathon will be held for two days from Saturday

The Dong-A Marathon, a leading the marathon world in Korea, is introducing a new type of offline marathon in line with the COVID-19 pandemic.

The 2020 Seoul Marathon Untact Race, which is the one and only type of race in the world, will be held for two days from Saturday at the Jamsil Sports Complex.

With the 2020 Seoul International Marathon/ The 91st Dong-A Marathon, which is one of the six World Marathon Majors and Platinum Label race, cancelled due to the COVID-19 pandemic, a completely new type of race is being introduced.

While most of the major marathons are being held virtually around the world, the Seoul International Marathon will be the first offline race, where participants gather in one place and complete the marathon race following quarantine rules.

The organizer of the Seoul Marathon gave six virtual race missions in advance and qualified those who achieved more than one mission to apply for the offline race.Participants of the offline race will run 10 laps inside the Olympic Main Stadium and the Auxiliary Stadium, running a total of 10 kilometers.

Participants will begin the race consecutively with a 10-meter distance from each other and will be asked to use a designated lane for COVID-19 prevention.Participants should wear a mask and avoid contact by using a separate lane when passing the runner in front of them.

Organizers will keep the race non-contact by following social distancing rules, such as taking preventative measures against COVID-19 at stadiums and strictly calculating time interval between the start of participants.

(10/22/2020) ⚡AMP
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Seoul International Marathon

Seoul International Marathon

The only marathon hosted in the heart of the Korean capital. Seoul marathon is the oldest marathon race hosted in Asia andis one of the fastestmarathon in the world. First held in 1931, Seoul marathon is the oldest marathon eventcontinuously held in Asia, and the second oldest in the world followingthe Boston Marathon. It embodies modern history of Korea, also...

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The Fukuoka Marathon, one of the world’s oldest footraces, was awarded World Athletics Heritage status for its advancement of the track and field event

The marathon was one of six events that received the status from World Athletics on Oct. 3, and it is the fifth Japanese recipient of a Heritage Plaque under the recognition system that started in 2018.

The Asahi Shimbun is one of the organizers of the Fukuoka marathon, which was first held in 1947.

From the 1960s to the 1970s, the marathon course was praised as a high-speed track, and two world records were set in the race, including the first finish under 2 hours and 10 minutes, by Australian Derek Clayton in 1967.

The competition was called “the effective world’s top marathon championship” at the time, and the smooth management of the event received international accolades.

In a statement, British track legend Sebastian Coe, president of World Athletics, praised the Fukuoka race for the excellent reputation it earned in the global athletics community through its long history.

Past Heritage Plaque winners from Japan are: Chuhei Nanbu, who won gold in the triple jump at the 1932 Los Angeles Olympics; the Hakone Ekiden relay marathon; Yoshio Koide, who coached Olympic marathon gold medalist Naoko Takahashi; and the Rikujo Kyogi Magazine (Track and field magazine).

(10/22/2020) ⚡AMP
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Fukuoka Marathon

Fukuoka Marathon

The Fukuoka International Open Marathon Championship is one of the longest running races in Japan, it is alsoan international men’s marathon race established in 1947. The course record is held by Tsegaye Kebede of Ethiopia, running 2:05:18 in 2009. Frank Shorter won first straight years from 1971 to 1974. Derek Clayton set the World Record here in 1967 running 2:09:37. ...

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Michael Ferrara, a 17-year-old teen will run in the virtual Marine Corps marathon to support homeless veterans across the country

A teenager from Hunterdon County is willing to go the distance for our nation’s veterans — and it’s not a short task.

Michael Ferrara, a 17-year-old resident of Ringoes, has launched an online fundraiser to support his run in the virtual Marine Corps Marathon, scheduled for Sunday, Oct. 25. All funds will be donated to the Houses for Warriors, a nonprofit organization that houses and improves the quality of life for disabled veterans.

While the marathon was originally scheduled to be held in Arlington, Virginia, it has switched to a virtual format in light of the coronavirus pandemic. This means Ferrara will track his time, pace and distance using a digital watch and send a screenshot of his results to the website of the Marine Corps Marathon.

This weekend, Ferrara will run the 26.2 miles from Sandy Hook to Spring Lake alongside Team RWB (Red, White and Blue).

“Team RWB is a running team that supports the veterans," Ferrara said. “They try to make sure to get the name out that the veterans really are out there to support us, to support the country ... and when they run they carry flags to show their patriotism.”

As of Monday, Ferrara had raised more than $3,500 for Houses for Warriors. These funds will help the organization foot the bill for converting an 86,000-square-foot facility in Denver into a transitional housing and vocational training facility for homeless veterans.

Should the project move forward, Houses for Warriors will build a memorial outside of the facility using bricks on which the names of the development’s founding members will be engraved.

Ferrara is hoping to raise at least $4,000 so his own name and those of three veterans that are particularly close to him can adorn the memorial.

“If we hit my current goal of $4,000, I’m going to dedicate three of the four bricks to two of my grandparents and my uncle,” Ferrara said. “My uncle was in the Marines, my one grandfather on my dad’s side was in the Navy, and my other grandfather on my mom’s side is in the Army.”

Ferrara’s fundraising efforts have been so impressive that Houses for Warriors began a #fundraisinghero monthly initiative to shine a light on his contributions and encourage others to take action.

“If I had 100 more people like Michael today, we would have that building tomorrow,” Andrew Canales, an Iraq War veteran and the CEO of Houses for Warriors, said.

Canales said veterans are fives times more likely to commit suicide if they’re homeless.

“That’s only for (35% of) the veterans that exist. We actually can’t account for the other half that aren’t in the VA health care system," Canales said.

Ferrara said his deeply felt patriotism inspired him to raise money for Houses for Warriors.

“The reason that I’m able to run and the reason that people are able to do what they do everyday is because of the veterans. And it’s not fair to the veterans that they end up in the situation that they’re in — ending up homeless," the teen said.

(10/21/2020) ⚡AMP
by Caroline fassett
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Marine Corps Marathon

Marine Corps Marathon

Recognized for impeccable organization on a scenic course managed by the US Marines in Arlington, VA and the nation's capital, the Marine Corps Marathon is one of the largest marathons in the US and the world. Known as 'the best marathon for beginners,' the MCM is largest marathon in the world that doesn't offer prize money, earning its nickname, “The...

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2020 Shanghai Marathon will take place on November 29, organizers announced on Wednesday with a field around of 9,000 runners

The annual event will be scaled down from last year’s 38,000 runners to 9,000 in the aftermath of the coronavirus outbreak. The 10-kilometer and 5.5km races have been canceled and the 9,000 runners will be running the full 42-kilometer distance.

There will be no international runners, or runners from high-risk areas, this year. The event has also altered its route with the finishing line at the riverside West Bund Art Center in Xuhui District instead of Shanghai Stadium.

The race will start at 7am from the Bund. Runners will be divided into three groups and start their journey some minutes apart to avoid crowding. The starting area has a space of about 15,000 square meters and runners will be able to keep a 1-meter distance from each other before the race begins.

The new route will make its first turning at Xinkaihe Road instead of the narrower Jinling Road East. Runners will go past city landmarks that include the pedestrian street on Nanjing Road E, People’s Square, Jing’an Temple and Longhua Temple before reaching the riverside art center.

All participants, including front-tier staff, will have to hand in nucleic acid test reports within seven days ahead of the event. Runners will have their identity cards, temperatures and health codes checked before the race.

“I’m happy that the Shanghai Marathon can go on this year under the impact of the pandemic,” said Dr Zhang Wenhong, a leading expert in Shanghai’s fight against the coronavirus.

“I know that Shanghai’s virus-fighting departments have already made preparations and got the city ready for the event. It’s an encouragement for citizens as well as a recognition of our pandemic-fight efforts,” Zhang said.

“Participants are still reminded to keep a safe distance from each other and avoid gathering during the event,” he added. “I’m expecting more sports activities to be held around the city while participants follow anti-pandemic requirements.”

A total of nine food and drink supply stations will be set along the closed track. Spectator zones have been canceled.

Organizers said plans were in place if participants exhibited symptoms during the event. They would be taken to a quarantined area and organizers would take measures that include canceling the race if necessary.

Registration has already started and will last till 5pm on Saturday. The 9,000 quotas will be distributed through a draw and the results will be announced on October 27. The entry fee is 100 yuan (US$13) for each runner.

The prize money has been set at 150,000 yuan for the winner, and 100,000 and 80,000 yuan for the second and third finishers, respectively.

Considering the shrunken scale, the organizers introduced a “Shanghai Virtual Run” this year. Runners who fail to get entry to the marathon can take part in the event through an online form – to complete the distance on any other track and have the procedure recorded through designated app.

The organizers will select 100 virtual run participants and award them with quotas for next year’s Shanghai Marathon.

(10/21/2020) ⚡AMP
by Ma Yue
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Shanghai International Marathon

Shanghai International Marathon

Shanghai International Marathon has established itself as the marquee running event on China’s Marathon calendar. Every November, tens of thousand participants run passing the many historical places of this city such as Bund Bull, Customs House, Shanghai Museum, Shanghai Grand Theater, Shanghai Exhibition center, Jing’an Temple, Nan Pu Bridge, Lu Pu Bridge, Long Hua Temple, Shanghai Stadium. The course records...

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Professional athletes reported a 27 per cent increase in anxiety due to the pandemic according to a recent Strava study

A joint study between Strava and Stanford University has explored how the COVID-19 pandemic has disrupted elements of daily life for professional athletes and how these changes have affected both their mental and physical health. The results of the study demonstrate that the pandemic has been hard on the motivation and mental health of professional athletes – just like everyone else. But it’s not all bad news, as some participants reported that they felt more physically fit than before the pandemic. Here’s a look at the findings. 

The study surveyed 131 professional athletes, all of whom typically spend time training in close quarters and travelling globally, to see how they’d adapted to the changes they have been facing. These professionals (a mix of runners, cyclists and triathletes) were surveyed between March and August. 

One in five athletes reported difficulties due to mental health

Of the athletes who participated, one in five reported difficulties in training due to their mental health, with a 22 per cent increase in reported depression and a 27 per cent increase in reported anxiety. This increase in depression and anxiety, for some runners, had an effect on their training, and for nearly half, their training efforts weren’t compensated in the same way due to the pandemic.

Strava athletes reported that nearly half of them were facing sponsorship reductions due to the pandemic, which is the primary source of income for many professionals. Through the spring, some runners were putting on their own meets to try and fulfill sponsor obligations and avoid contract reductions, but not everyone had the resources to do this.

Not all bad news

While some of these stats paint a bleak picture, nearly half of the athletes also reported that they felt fitter despite COVID-19 restrictions, with 31 per cent noting that they have trained more than before during the pandemic.

Everyone is different, and some people were better equipped to deal with the pandemic than others. Some had the tools to cope with the pandemic, and it appears that they were able to come out healthy and fit. If you were able to maintain your physical fitness and mental health through the pandemic, big kudos. And if you had a hard time, know that you’re not alone. 

(10/21/2020) ⚡AMP
by Madeleine Kelly
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Golden’s Courtney Dauwalter won Big’s Backyard Ultra in Tennessee

Dauwalter and Harvey Lewis pushed each other beyond previous limits at the race, with Dauwalter completing a record 68 laps and accumulating 283.33 miles to win the event in the early morning hours of October 20 after nearly three full days of running with very little sleep.

Daulwalter, a Salomon-sponsored runner, broke her own American record of 67 laps, or yards, as they’re called in “backyard-ultra” vernacular, and very briefly held the world record for the unique style of racing that sends runners out for a 4.1667-mile loop at the top of every hour until only one runner remains.

The event concluded when Dauwalter crossed the finish line on her 68th lap and she was declared the last runner standing after Lewis failed to compete the lap and retired from the race. Wearing a yellow Salomon T-shirt and a pair of long, surf-style running shorts she’s become known for, Dauwalter was smiling and energetic after she finished.

“Wow, what that was fun,” said the 35-year-old Daulwalter, while sipping a cold beer shortly after finishing her 68th lap at 2:46 a.m. CT. “I had a good routine and got a lot of rest. And Harvey was amazing.”

(10/21/2020) ⚡AMP
by Colorado Runner
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Jordan Crookes a 23-year-old successfully ran the virtual London Marathon 2020 despite struggling with his Cerebral Palsy

Jordan Crookes, of Mitcham, smashed his fundraising challenge for Cerebral Palsy Sport at the beginning of October.

 After being born prematurely, Jordan faced a series of challenges due to his left side being much weaker than his right. 

He was unable to crawl, his walking was delayed and he had issues with his speech and eyesight.

 Growing up, Jordan was subject to bullying whilst dealing with "the pressure of daily school life". He left mainstream school to attend a site more catered to his academic needs. 

Speaking about his condition, Jordan said: "Day to day tasks that many take for granted are a daily struggle for me. For example, locking a door with a key and tying shoelaces with a weak left hand is just a nightmare.

 "My escape from daily life and pressures was to play football, football was my world. But once starting work, I was unable to continue with my love of football due to shift patterns.

 “Running became my new love, it was able to fit around my work schedule and is now my escape from all the challenges that I face hour after hour. Running gave me a new focus in life."

Putting his new skills to the test, Jordan decided to sign up for a 10k run event.

 "To run alongside hundreds of people and be treated as an equal, to have the same end goal as everyone to just cross the finish line is an amazing feeling," Jordan said. 

Jordan's first 10k gave him the "bug" to run more and participate in further events, which overtime helped him prepare to run several half marathons.

 And after signing up to volunteer at London Marathon 2019, Jordan decided to challenge himself further.

 He said: "Last year at the marathon, I greeted people representing Children with Cancer UK.

"It was an amazing and emotional experience to see people so determined and focused. This gave me a new goal, to train, run and finish the London Marathon 2020."

Jordan completed his mission on October 4, and ran a total of 26.2 miles, finishing his goal at Morden Hall Park.

(10/20/2020) ⚡AMP
by Monica Charsley
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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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Doping charges against Bahrain's 400m world champion Salwa Eid Naser dismissed

The doping charges brought against Bahrain's 400 meter world champion Salwa Eid Naser have been dismissed, the Athletics Integrity Unit announced on Tuesday.The 22-year-old Naser was provisionally suspended in June and charged with failing to meet 'whereabouts' criteria.

The AIU charged the Nigerian-born runner with four alleged 'whereabouts' failures which included three missed tests between March 2019 and January this year.But the World Athletics Disciplinary Tribunal did not confirm a missed test from April 2019, therefore meaning Naser had not missed three tests within 12 months which is required to prove an anti-doping violation.

The AIU added that it has the right to appeal to the Court of Arbitration for Sport.Naser stunned athletics in Doha last year when she powered to the third-fastest 400m time in history to win the world title.

Her time of 48.14 seconds has only been bettered by East German Marita Koch in 1985 and former Czech runner Jarmila Kratochvilova in 1983.The AIU is the independent anti-doping watchdog for track and field, set up in 2017.

(10/20/2020) ⚡AMP
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Athlete Refugee team member Nait-Hammou on his half marathon championships debut

Athlete Refugee Team member Otmane Nait-Hammou is making a habit of rubbing elbows with some of the world's finest runners at World Championships.

In Doha last year, he lined up next to reigning world and Olympic champion Conseslus Kipruto in the opening round of the 3000m steeplechase. On the Gdynia start line, he stood should-to-shoulder with Joshua Cheptegei, the world record holder in the 5000 and 10,000m.

"If it's destiny or luck I don't know,” he says, laughing when reminded of the company he’s managed to keep at the start lines of his last two World Championship appearances. "It's an honour for me and I feel really proud.”

He’s also taking great pride in what he managed to achieve in Gdynia representing the Athlete Refugee Team.

On Saturday, Nait-Hammou wasn’t the same athlete he was a year ago in the Qatari capital. There, starry-eyed and overwhelmed, he tumbled to the track on the first lap of his race and was the last to finish, more than 70 seconds after Kipruto. In Gdynia, he finished 67th in the field of 122, clocking 1:03:28 in his competitive debut over the distance, beating some of the world’s finest half-marathoners in the process.

The difference? Taking to the line as a fledgling professional athlete, both in practicality and in attitude.

An opportunity to train like a professional

Nait-Hammou began running in his native Morocco in 2012, a passion he continued to feed even when life threw challenges in his path. He went to France in 2015 to pursue his studies, but, unable to return to Morocco, he made the difficult decision to apply for asylum. That road took him to Sweden in 2016 where he watched, on a television in a refugee centre, a team of refugee athletes competing at the Rio Olympics.

Those moving images fuelled his imagination and his motivation. Three years later he himself would compete twice on the international stage, first at the World Cross Country Championships in Aarhus, Denmark, then again in Doha, modest outings that nonetheless helped him step up to the next level.

“A lot of things changed over the past year,” Nait-Hammou says. “I have a lot of solidarity and support that has changed my life." That includes sponsorship arrangements with On, his apparel sponsor, with the energy gel Maurten, from his French club ES Sartrouville and ongoing development support from World Athletics and Olympic Solidarity.

Together, he says, "these things have given me more confidence and motivation and excitement to train very hard, to push very hard in training. It's a huge difference from when you come to participate and when you come to perform.”

His increasingly professional arrangement allowed him to attend a training camp for the first time, a month-long stint at altitude in Font-Remeu, France, in July and August where he logged 150 to 160 kilometres per week for four straight weeks. It was a type of training he’d never attempted before. “The first week was tough. I was really tired. But then the second week was better, and the third even better.”

It also brought results. On 29 August, he improved his steeplechase best to 8:51.07 at a French regional meeting in Decines Charpieu, his first race in seven months. Two weeks later he finished seventh at the French championships. In between he won a regional 10km in 30:50.

All that set him up well for Gdynia.

“I felt confident at the start line, because I had the opportunity to train and prepare like a professional. That made a big change in my life and my approach. I can see in training that I am getting better. I'm not the same person I was in Doha.”

“I never ran under 30 minutes. Never. I'm still in shock. I still haven't realised what I’ve done. I broke my 10k PB inside a half marathon. In my first half marathon. And in a world championship. It's crazy.”

"I'm starting to think about doing some really strong training this winter for a good marathon early next year," he says, and then focus on the steeplechase during the track season. "I want to go to the marathon for a new adventure. I am excited and motivated for that.

“I'm not thinking the same after Gdynia,” he continues. “I hope I gave the inspiration to other refugees to do better than me in the next World Championships.

“I didn’t come this time to participate. I came to perform. We get the support from World Athletics, from my sponsors, to come to the World Championships, so I wanted to show that we can perform like other athletes. That refugees can be like normal people.

"I beat some Swedish athletes, I beat some Spanish runners. I beat some of the best athletes from other countries, who are all very good athletes. I feel really proud of that and that I was able to represent 69 million people from around the world, to show that we can do it.”

(10/20/2020) ⚡AMP
by World Athletics
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World Half Marathon Championships

World Half Marathon Championships

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 that help to position València as the city of running. It has been the main contributor to the Valencia Marathon and Half Marathon for the past five years. The Spanish Federation...

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We call them carbon-plated shoes, but the advantage might not come from the carbon after all

Carbon-plated shoes have been on the running market for years, and they have taken over road racing on the promise that they can make runners more economical.

Efficiency is tied to a runner’s economy, which refers to the amount of energy expended to maintain a particular speed. The more efficient you are, the better your running economy. Nike’s promise with the Vaporfly 4% was to make runners up to four per cent more efficient, but new research is suggesting that these energy savings might not come from the carbon plate. 

A group of researchers recently published a paper in Nature Journal that refutes some of the carbon-plated hype. They suggest that the stiffness of the shoe alone might not be significant when it comes to lessening the effort to maintain a particular pace. 

The ankle joint

This paper assessed the bending stiffness of shoes (which is what the plate changes) and how much added stiffness improved running economy. Researchers added carbon plates to Adidas shoes that were 0.8, 1.6 and 3.2 mm thick. They found no difference in the flexion of the ankle joint or muscle activation in the feet or legs by adding the plates, meaning that they didn’t find these plates improved economy at all. 

It’s not about the plate, it’s about the foam

While these researchers don’t believe that the plate alone is responsible for the improvement in running economy, they can’t deny that Nike has seen improvements through their carbon-plated shoes. Their new working hypothesis is that the magic isn’t in the plate, it’s in the foam – the plate is merely a prop to help the foam to do its thing. 

When considered alongside World Athletics’ new shoe rules this hypothesis makes a little more sense. WA’s rules, which came out in early 2020, put a regulation on the plate (there can be only one per shoe), but they almost imposed an upper limit to stack heights, putting regulations on the foam as well. This could’ve been a happy accident or maybe they’re onto the fact that the foam is very much a part of the secret sauce of Nike, and other companies’, fastest shoes. 

What does this mean?

There have been lots of hypotheses about how much faster one could’ve run if only they’d had carbon-plated shoes back in the day. Researchers in this study suggest that you probably wouldn’t have run much faster by slapping a stiff plate into the middle of your shoe’s foam. They concluded, “Changing footwear bending stiffness hardly changes athlete biomechanics and may not improve running economy. Therefore, if competitive distance runners went back in time, added carbon-fiber plates to their footwear, and re-raced, their performance would likely not change.”

But slapping some fancy new foam and a carbon plate onto your old upper – now that might have produced some faster times. 

(10/20/2020) ⚡AMP
by Madeleine Kelly
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Spanish ultrarunner Kilian Jornet runs 29:59 and Jakob Ingebrigtsen posts 35:05 at Norwegian 10K

Spanish ultrarunner Kilian Jornet made his 10K debut on Saturday at the Hytteplanmila, a road race in Norway that attracts a number of fast runners, including Jakob and Filip Ingebrigtsen. Jornet eked under 30 minutes with an impressive 29:59, while Filip finished in sixth place in 29:03. Jakob ran a shocking 35:05, although he was reportedly on pacing duty for his brother, which explains his surprisingly pedestrian result. 

Jornet’s run 

Before the Hytteplanmila, Jornet posted on Instagram to write a bit about his goals for the race. “It will be my first race on a flat surface, something that only two years ago I thought (and said) I would never do because I found running on the flat so boring,” he wrote. After making a few adjustments to his training, though, Jornet said he decided to give road racing a try. Unfortunately, he began to feel pain in his calf two weeks before the race, and he ended up taking it easy moving forward until race day.

“As a novice my expectations aren’t big,” he continued. “I would be really happy if I’m able to grab a few seconds to what is my ‘training PB,’ so to run around 29:30.” He fell short of this goal, although he still managed to run a sub-30 result for his first official 10K PB. Had he been healthy for the entire build to the race, he probably could have hit the 29:30 mark. Just a couple of months ago, he ran a 10K in 29:42, and that was immediately after running an all-out vertical kilometre for a challenge he calls the VK10K. If he can run that quickly after punishing his legs for 1,000m of climbing, he’s certainly capable of shaving at least 12 seconds off that time when he’s fresh and healthy. Hopefully he’ll give road racing another shot soon when he’s fully recovered so we can see what he can do. 

Going into the race, we had hoped to see a Jakob-Jornet showdown. We didn’t really expect Jornet to keep up with the young Norwegian, but it would have been fun to see how one of the world’s best ultrarunners fared against one of the top track athletes. Last year, Jakob set the Norwegian 10K record at the Hytteplanmila with a 27:54, but he obviously didn’t make a push to challenge that this time around.

Instead, he paced Filip (who is fresh off a win at the Norwegian cross-country championships) for 7K before slowing down considerably and cruising to the finish. Jakob passed through 7K in 19:53 before slowing to 6:22, 4:10 and 4:40 splits for the final 3K. Filip had a strong eighth kilometre with a 2:48, but he suffered greatly in the last 2K, posting 3:03 and 3:17 splits. 

(10/19/2020) ⚡AMP
by Ben Snider-McGrath
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Kenya’s Peres Jepchirchir says that her next target is the Valencia Marathon

Kenya’s Peres Jepchirchir will enjoy only a week’s rest after Saturday’s record-breaking victory in the World Athletics Half Marathon Championships in Gdynia, Poland.

Because she has the Valencia Marathon on December 6 in her cross-hairs.

"My season is not yet complete. I still have Valencia Marathon in December so I’ll prepare for that. I think this win gave me a lot. I'd like to run 2:17 or 2:18 for the marathon,” she said after winning yesterday’s World Athletics Half Marathon Championships in a world record time of one hour, five minutes and 16 seconds.

"This pandemic was difficult and it affected a lot of people. I used this time to train, I didn’t stop my training because I was trying to reach my shape.

"I am so happy with this. It’s a gift to all the Kenyans, to my family. I am going to rest now for one week to recover then I’ll continue training for Valencia," she told World Athletics.

Jepchirchir’s world records and the meteoric rise of Kibiwott Kandie have been the talk on the road racing circuit in this coronavirus-ravaged season.

On Saturday, Jepchirchir recaptured the crown she won last in 2016 in Cardiff.

It was a cat-and-mouse game in the last two kilometres between Jepchirchir, Ethiopia’s Yalemzerf Yehualaw and Melat Kejeta from Germany before the Kenyan out-sprinted them to triumph.

The 27-year-old Kenyan, who failed to defend her title in 2018 after taking a maternity break, improved her own women’s only half marathon world record by 18 seconds.

Kenya’s Joyciline Jepkosgei finished sixth in 1:05:58 while compatriots Brillian Jepkorir (1:06:56), Rosemary Wanjiru (1:07:10) and Dorcas Kimeli (1:07:55) came in ninth, 10th and 11th. That saw Kenya finish second in the team event followed by Germany.

“My goal was to win but it’s unbelievable since I didn’t expect that I would beat the world record. It was a little bit windy, but the course was good for me," said Jepchirchir.

Kandie might have lost the battle to Uganda’s Jacob Kiplimo, but his second place finish on his debut for Kenya could as well as signalled his entry to the elite club.  

“It’s not that I lost my power in the last kilometres, but it’s my calculations that went wrong,” Kandie reflected.

“It was a good race and I enjoyed the course. It was my first time at the World Half Marathon Championships and I won!” said Kiplimo.

“It is hard to explain, because I am full of emotion.”

(10/19/2020) ⚡AMP
by Ayumba Ayodi
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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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Registration for the highly anticipated Ras Al Khaimah Half Marathon 2021 is now officially open

Registration begins for next years Ras Al Khaimah Half Marathon, with runners from across the UAE and further afield invited to secure a spot at next year’s event, which is scheduled to take place on Friday (Feb.19, 2021) on Al Marjan Island.

The 2021 World Athletics Gold Label race will be the landmark 15th edition of the event, which has proved to be a huge success down the years as both professional and amateur athletes gather in Ras Al Khaimah to compete.

Preparations for the event are now underway, with stringent safety measures to be implemented across the board in order to safeguard participants, volunteers, guests and residents, aligned with global best practice and national federal directives.

The Ras Al Khaimah Half Marathon 2021 is Bureau Veritas certified as a SafeGuard Assurance Programme, a four-step methodology designed to verify, certify and promote the hygiene and cleanliness standards of customer-facing businesses, ensuring all health, safety and hygiene procedures are effectively implemented.

The 2020 event, which took place earlier this year, attracted over 5,200 entries and saw Ethiopia’s Ababel Yeshaneh break the world record by 20 seconds in the elite female race as she recorded a time of 64:31.

Those runners wishing to compete at the Ras Al Khaimah Half Marathon 2021 are advised to secure a place as soon as possible in order to avoid disappointment, with registrations now open via the below link: https://www.therakhalfmarathon.com/registration/

New for next year’s event is the introduction of a Platinum Package, which is priced AED 550 and provides participants with an Elite Race Experience.

With only 100 slots available, Platinum Package runners will begin the race in a special area of the course and start ahead of other competitors, ensuring the best possible race conditions.

Aside from the Platinum Package, the earliest starting slot is Wave 1 at 7.30am, with the latest Wave 7 at 9am. Starting grids, consisting of no more than 400 athletes per Wave, will be marked for social distancing, with 15-minute intervals between each Wave beginning the race. Apart from the Platinum Package, which will stay open until capacity is reached (max. 100), each respective Wave will only go on sale once the previous one has sold out.

Raki Phillips, CEO of Ras Al Khaimah Tourism Development Authority shared, “Aligned with the strong upturn in the Emirate’s tourism and hospitality performance, we are delighted to announce that the Ras Al Khaimah Half Marathon will be returning to the Emirate on the Feb.19, 2021. We look forward to hosting the stellar line-up of elite athletes, as well as local families and enthusiasts to join in what is sure to be a memorable event.”

CEO of RCS Sports and Events Enrico Fili’ said, “Once again, we are proud to support Ras Al Khaimah Tourism Development Authority in delivering the 15th edition of the Ras Al Khaimah Half Marathon on Al Marjan Island. We witnessed fantastic results in the 2020 race, with Ababel Yeshaneh from Ethiopia smashing the women’s World Record by 20 seconds. This result has recently been ratified by World Athletics and we look forward to having another unforgettable elite line-up in 2021 that will ensure the event remains the fastest half marathon in the world.”

(10/19/2020) ⚡AMP
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Rak Half Marathon

Rak Half Marathon

The Ras Al Khaimah Half Marathon is the 'world's fastest half marathon' because if you take the top 10 fastest times recorded in RAK for men (and the same for women) and find the average (for each) and then do the same with the top ten fastest recorded times across all races (you can reference the IAAF for this), the...

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Italy’s 2017 world bronze medalist Antonella Palmisano breaks Italian 10km race walk record in Modena

Palmisano produced the fastest clocking for 18 years in the 10km race walk when winning at Italy’s Endurance Festival Championships in Modena on Sunday (18) in 41:28.

Palmisano was contesting her third race in 15 days, following a world-leading 21:00.0 over 5000m in Trivio on 3 October and her 1:28:40 victory over 20km in Podebrady on 10 October.

The 29-year-old showed no signs of fatigue in Modena, though, and after a steady opening kilometre of 4:13 she picked up the pace and reached the half-way point in 20:50. She maintained that tempo for a few more kilometres and managed to move up a gear in the latter stages, covering the final kilometre in 4:04 to cross the finish line in 41:28.

Her winning time took 10 seconds off the previous Italian record, set 23 years ago by 1996 Olympic fourth-place finisher Rossella Giordano. 1993 world silver medallist Ileana Salvador had clocked 41:30 27 years ago but her time wasn’t officially recognised as an Italian record. Palmisano’s performance, however, is an improvement on both of those marks and takes her to sixth on the world all-time list. The last woman to cover the distance in a faster time was Norway’s Kjersti Tysse-Playzer, who clocked 41:16 in 2002.

“Today I wanted to have fun,” said Palmisano, whose previous best for the distance was 42:50, although she had also clocked 41:57.29 for 10,000m on the track. “It’s the first time I’ve done three races so close together, but I didn’t feel the fatigue from Podebrady in my legs. It wasn’t easy in the final two or three kilometres, but I pushed hard.”

Nicole Colombi, who represented Italy at last year’s World Championships, was second in 43:55. Francesco Fortunato won the men’s race in 39:06, moving him to third on the Italian all-time list.

(10/19/2020) ⚡AMP
by World Athletics
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2021 Kagoshima Marathon Canceled and updates on other Marathons in Japan

We have studied a variety of options for staging the 2021 Kagoshima Marathon, but with no end to the coronavirus crisis in sight we have come to the unfortunate conclusion, in light of the need to ensure the safety of the runners, event staff and local residents, that it would not be possible to hold the race as planned and that it must be canceled for the second year in a row.

We sincerely pray for a swift end to the crisis and that we can once again hold the Kagoshima Marathon as a safe event that will delight runners and locals alike. We will be working hard to make that a reality.

With regard to priority entry for those who were entered to run in 2020, we are still studying how we might move forward with improved coronavirus measures in the future, including examining the field size, and do not have a clear answer at this point.

We will post that information as soon as it has been determined and thank you for your patience until then. We are planning to hold events including a running clinic and an online marathon and will also post that information on our website as soon as all the details have been decided.

Kagoshima Marathon Organizing Committee

Major Japanese marathons still scheduled to happen in 2020 and 2021 marathon announcements to date:

Dec. 6: Fukuoka International Marathon (370) - scheduled with limited field size

Dec. 20: Hofu Marathon (2,724) - scheduled with limited field size

2021

Jan. 10 - Ibusuki Nanohana Marathon (10,954) - canceled

Jan. 31 - Katsuta Marathon (10,627) - canceled

Jan. 31 - Osaka International Women's Marathon (423) - TBA

Feb. 7 - Beppu-Oita Marathon (3,141) - canceled

Feb. 14 - Ehime Marathon (9,554) - canceled

Feb. 14 - Nobeoka Nishi Nippon Marathon (536) - TBA

Feb. 21 - Kyoto Marathon (13,894) - canceled

Feb. 21 - Kochi Ryoma Marathon (10,924) - canceled

Feb. 21 - Kumamoto Castle Marathon (10,444) - canceled

Feb. 21 - Kitakyushu Marathon (9,485) - canceled

Feb. 21 - Okinawa Marathon (7,990) - canceled

Feb. 28 - Shonan International Marathon (16,821) - rescheduled from Dec. 6

Feb. 28 - Himeji Castle Marathon (6,938) - canceled

Feb. 28 - Iwaki Sunshine Marathon (5,259) - canceled

Feb. 28 - Lake Biwa Marathon (174) - TBA

Mar. 7 - Kagoshima Marathon (9.356) - canceled

Mar. 7 - Tokyo Marathon (151) - postponed to October 17

Mar. 14 - Shizuoka Marathon (9,802) - canceled

Mar. 14 - Nagoya Women's Marathon (96) - scheduled with limited field size

Mar. 21 - Itabashi City Marathon (13,310) - canceled

Mar. 21 - Koga Hanamomo Marathon (8,766) - canceled

Mar. 21 - Saga Sakura Marathon (8.509) - canceled

Mar. 28 - Tokushima Marathon (11,010) - decision in early November

Mar. 28 - Sakura Marathon (5,614) - TBA

Apr. 18 - Kasumigaura Marathon (10,096) - decision by end of October

Apr. 18 - Nagano Marathon (8,082) - decision by end of October

(10/18/2020) ⚡AMP
by Japan Running News
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Woman runs mile in under 6 minutes while 9 months pregnant

Over the last seven months, many people have been motivated to get outside and get active in the midst of coronavirus closures and precautions.

While exercising outdoors may be a relatively new endeavor for some people, one woman has been dedicated to her workout routine for years, and neither COVID-19 nor pregnancy have slowed her down.

Makenna Myler, 28, is nine months pregnant. She recently ran a mile in just five minutes and 25 seconds.

Myler, an avid runner, said she “cut back [her] mileage a lot,” running five to six times a week throughout her pregnancy.

She hoped she would still be able to run later in her pregnancy and voiced her anxiety to her husband.

“To keep me motivated, he said he would give me $100 if I could break 8 minutes doing the mile at 9 months pregnant,” she said.

This week, she met her goal.

“Feeling capable is everything to me,” Myler said in an interview with Buzzfeed. “Running has been a big outlet for me in that way. Running during pregnancy has been a beautiful process of accepting effort and patience, not forcing anything, and letting go of pace and forced mileage.”

Jennifer Lincoln, a gynecologist based in Portland, Oregon, said Myler’s rigorous regimen isn’t cause for alarm.

“In general, if someone has been doing a certain exercise prior to pregnancy, they can continue it in pregnancy, with some exceptions," she said. "General precautions should be taken, such as staying hydrated, stopping if you become dizzy or feel unwell, or if you have high-risk issues and your doctor has advised you to modify or cut back.”

According to The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists, pregnant women should get at least 150 minutes of moderate-intensity aerobic activity every week, and physical activity does not increase risk of miscarriage, low birth weight or early delivery.

Myler’s expected due date is Oct. 19.

“It’s funny, I kept waiting and waiting for the day when I would just be done or my body would break, but that day never came," she told Buzzfeed. "So yeah, I’ll probably still be running by next Monday.”

(10/18/2020) ⚡AMP
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Study finds that Just 14 per cent of treadmill owners are extremely motivated to train

A recent study of more than 1,000 people who exercise regularly found that just 14.3 per cent of treadmill owners are “extremely motivated” to train, but there’s more to this number than what’s shown on the surface.

The study looked at gym-goers and at-home exercisers, and it turns out that, while rates of enjoyment on the treadmill are relatively low compared to other machines, this seemingly low rate of motivation is actually the highest. We’ve outlined some of the more pertinent (when it comes to runners, at least) findings below. 

Highest rates of motivation 

Fourteen per cent might not seem like a lot, but 39.3 per cent of treadmill owners said they are “very motivated” to train. Another 39.3 per cent said they’re “somewhat motivated,” and just 7.1 per cent responded with “not at all or slightly motivated.” Other than owners of stationary bikes and ellipticals (who are grouped together), the 14.3 per cent of treadmill owners responded with the second-highest rates of extreme motivation. Overall, 53.6 per cent of treadmill owners are extremely or very motivated to train, which gives the machine the highest rate of motivation when compared to other machines or gear. The lowest on the list were owners of free weights and yoga mats. 

One explanation for these higher rates of motivation could be due to the price of treadmills. As listed in the study, the average treadmill goes for $525, which is almost $300 more than the next most-expensive item (ellipticals and stationary bikes). After making such a big purchase, treadmill owners might feel obligated to use their expensive machines, which creates a sort of motivation to train. Conversely, yoga mats and free weights are much less expensive, and so owners of these items may not feel as pressured to use them. 

Lowest rates of enjoyment 

The treadmill’s rate of motivation might be much higher than other machines, but when it comes to actual enjoyment in training, it comes in second-last, just ahead of the elliptical and stationary bikes. Just 40.1 per cent of treadmill runners said they enjoyed their runs. Cyclists took the top spot in this category, with 52.6 per cent responding positively to this exercise. 

Conclusions? 

If you like the treadmill, that’s awesome, and it’s a great way to get your run training in (especially during colder months). But if you’re not a fan of the treadmill, that doesn’t mean you won’t be motivated to use it.

This study shows that, even if you don’t take much enjoyment out of the training, you’ll likely still run on the treadmill anyway. Nobody said being a runner was easy, and forcing yourself to use the treadmill is a perfect example of why this is a tough sport.  

(10/17/2020) ⚡AMP
by Ben Snider-McGrath
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Kiplimo makes history for Uganda at World Athletics Half Marathon Championships Gdynia 2020

For the first time in the 28-year history of this event, a Ugandan athlete stood proud atop the podium, but it wasn’t the one most expected. In the men’s race at the World Athletics Half Marathon Championships Gdynia 2020 on Saturday (17), it was Jacob Kiplimo and not Joshua Cheptegei who reigned supreme, the 19-year-old coming of age with his first global title at senior level.

With a devastating surge over the last of the four laps, no one could live with Kiplimo and he hit the line a delighted champion in a championship record of 58:49, with Kenya’s Kibiwott Kandie second in 58:54 and Ethiopia’s Amedework Walelegn third in 59:08.

Next in was Cheptegei, who had lost contact with the leaders with a little less than five kilometres to run, the king of the track demoted to fourth place on the roads but rewarded with a swift time of 59:21 on his debut at the distance.

“I couldn’t give more than that,” said Cheptegei, who set a world 10,000m record in Valencia just 10 days ago. “I have been training more for 5000m and 10,000m so I was not well prepared for it, but I’m very happy – running a sub-60 is really special for me. My body was really going very well but I discovered I still had some fatigue in the legs.”

In a race of outstanding quality, the first 10 runners broke 60 minutes, the first time that ever happened at the event and just the second time it has ever happened. This, despite a relatively pedestrian start that saw the leading contenders cruise through the opening lap waiting for one another to make a decisive move.

No Ugandan had ever won an individual medal in 23 previous editions of the event – their one team medal a men’s bronze in 2004 – but the nation has been a rising force in distance running these past few years so today’s result came as no surprise. Kiplimo, after all, had clocked a world-leading 7:26.64 for 3000m in Rome last month and 12:48.63 for 5000m so his credentials were unquestioned, and he had followed Cheptegei home at last year’s World Cross Country Championships.

His only half marathon before today was the 1:01:53 he ran in Kampala last year but from the outset today, he looked most at home at the distance.

In contrast to the women’s race, the men’s race set off at a conservative tempo, the leading contenders happy to coast through the opening 5km in 14:20 as Switzerland’s Julien Wanders towed them along out front.

A leading pack of 23 went through 10km in 28:23, and the gears slowly began to shift in the third lap, with Kandie and Ethiopia’s Guye Adola applying some pressure. Kandie stepped the pace up even more as he clicked through 15km in 42:17 and clocked the first sub-14-minute 5km split of the race with 13:54.

It whittled the leading pack to 11 with a lap to go, with Cheptegei passing the bell a few seconds behind Kandie in eighth place. Kandie was soon joined by Kiplimo as they ran uphill and as he saw the gaps open behind to Cheptegei, Kiplimo kept the pressure on, building a 15-metre lead over his teammate.

Kandie, too, began to fall off pace behind the smooth-striding Kiplimo, but with less than 3km to run he clawed his way back to Kiplimo’s shoulder. The pace now was red-hot, Kiplimo surging to 20km in 55:55, a 13:37 5km split giving him a four-second lead over Kandie as he ran downhill towards the coast for the final time.

Kandie refused to lie down, chasing Kiplimo for all he was worth as they neared the finish in a bid to keep the men’s crown in Kenya for the fourth successive championships, following Geoffrey Kamworor’s three straight wins between 2014 and 2018. But he simply couldn’t close down the advantage and he had to make do with silver.

“I feel great, it was my first time at the World Half Marathon Championships and I won!” said Kiplimo. “It is hard to explain, because I am full of emotion. Unbelievable. The weather was really good, as were the conditions and course. I'm so grateful for everyone who has supported me.”

Kandie led Kenya to gold in the team event, with Leonard Barsoton’s 59:34 and Benard Kimeli’s 59:42 giving them a cumulative time of 2:58:10. Ethiopia took team silver with 2:58:25, and Uganda bronze with 2:58:39. All three teams finished inside the previous championship record.

(10/17/2020) ⚡AMP
by World Athletics
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World Half Marathon Championships

World Half Marathon Championships

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 that help to position València as the city of running. It has been the main contributor to the Valencia Marathon and Half Marathon for the past five years. The Spanish Federation...

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Grovdal clocks 30:32 Norwegian 10km record in Hole Norway

Karoline Bjerkeli Grovdal broke her own national 10km record at the Hytteplanmila 10km in Hole, Norway, on Saturday (17).

The 30-year-old clocked 30:32 to smash the previous mark of 31:25 she set at this race in 2017. The performance lifted the continental cross country standout to fourth on the 2020 world list and third all-time among Europeans, trailing just Lonah Chemtai Salpeter (30:05) and Paula Radcliffe (30:21).

Grovdal has raced little this season but she was on a tear from the gun to make this appearance count, reaching three kilometres in 9:10 and the midway point in 15:17 to finish 31st in the race overall among the 90 competitors.

Vienna Søyland Dahle was a distant second in 33:18.

Jakob Ingebrigtsen, who made his debut at the distance with a 27:54 course record in this race last year, wasn't really a factor in his return.

Opening with a modest 2:59 first kilometre, he worked his way back to the leaders after two kilometres and briefly took the lead at the four kilometre point. Zerei Mezngi then upped the pace after five kilometres with Ingebrigtsen and his brother Filip struggling to maintain contact. Mezngi extended his lead to six seconds at six kilometres and forged on largely unchallenged to win in 28:20. Narve Gilje Nordas was second in 28:28, while Filip Ingebrigtsen drifted back to finish sixth in 29:03.

Jakob Ingebrigtsen, who remained in contact through seven kilometres, slowed to a jog over the waning stages and eventually finished in 35:05.

Spanish mountain, trail and ultramarathon runner and ski mountaineer Kilian Jornet ran with the leaders early on, and finished 18th in 29:59.

(10/17/2020) ⚡AMP
by World Athletics
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Four-year ban for Daniel Wanjiru

Kenyan runner who won London Marathon in 2017 is punished for biological passport violation

Daniel Wanjiru joins the list of high-profile Kenyan runners who have received an anti-doping ban recently.

The 28-year-old, who won the London Marathon three years ago, has been given a four-year ban due to biological passport irregularities – a ban which has been backdated to the day of his original suspension on December 9 last year.

This means he will be banned until December 2023, while his results since March 9 last year, which include 11th place in the 2019 London Marathon, have also been disqualified.

The 27-year-old, who beat Kenenisa Bekele to the 2017 London Marathon title, has a marathon PB of 2:05:21, set when winning the Amsterdam Marathon in 2016.

On his biological passport irregularities, a panel said: “That anomaly is far beyond any physiological possible adjustment and by itself carries a very high risk of thrombotic complications, coronary thrombosis and sudden death.”

You can read the full details of the case via the Athletics Integrity Unit here.

“I feel I am already seen as a sinner of doping, but I am not,” Wanjiru said when he heard of his provisional suspension. “I am innocent.”

Other top Kenyan runners currently serving bans include marathoners Jemima Sumgong and Wilson Kipsang plus miler Asbel Kiprop.

(10/17/2020) ⚡AMP
by Athletics Weekly
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Tokyo trials tentatively announced

British athletes are told what they must do to reach the Olympics and Paralympics – if they take place next year

British Olympic hopefuls will try to qualify for the rescheduled Tokyo Games in a track and field trials event staged in Manchester on June 26-27, whereas marathon contenders will race for places on the team on a multi-lap circuit in London on March 26.

With the Virgin Money London Marathon being held in October in 2020 and 2021, a new trials race over 26.2 miles has been created in the British capital with small elite fields battling for Olympic selection on a loop course.

For 10,000m runners, the trial event will be at the annual Highgate Harriers-organised event at Parliament Hill on June 5.

Race walkers, meanwhile, will have a 20km trial in Leeds in May or June and 50km trial in the spring at a European Race Walking Permit meeting.

At these trials athletes will be striving to qualify for Tokyo, although there remains uncertainty surrounding the staging of the Games themselves.

On the coronavirus pandemic, UK Athletics say in their selection policy statement: “Each of us is managing the impact of Covid 19 and we can see the impact it has had on society at large, the international calendar and the Tokyo Olympic and Paralympic Games in 2021.

“There is still considerable uncertainty surrounding the rescheduling of qualifying competitions. British Athletics is working closely with its international partners to ensure that British athletes have a fair and reasonable opportunity to meet the respective qualification and entry criteria outlined in the policy, and a realistic timeline in which to do so.”

AW understands the marathon trial will be held in a secure bio-bubble similar to the recent London Marathon, though, and is almost certain not to be cancelled.

UKA say their priority is to pick athletes capable of winning medals and reaching the top eight. Following this their selection will focus on picking “individual athletes demonstrating future global medal potential for the Olympic cycle running up to and including the Paris 2024 Olympic Games.”

The announcement follows the news that Britain’s new head coach, Christian Malcolm, has already started his job, albeit from Australia before moving back to the UK soon.

On the track and field trials at Sportcity, UKA’s selection policy states: “The first two placed eligible athletes in each individual trials event will be automatically selected for the same event, provided that, within at least one of the two qualification periods … the athlete has achieved at least one World Athletics qualification standard.”

Marathon and race walks selections will be announced March 30 although Callum Hawkins has already been preselected for the marathon. Athletes for all remaining events will be named on June 28 after the team has been approved by the British Olympic Association.

You can read the full Tokyo 2021 selection policy for Olympic athletes here and for Paralympic athletes here.

 

 

(10/17/2020) ⚡AMP
by Athletics Weekly
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Jepchirchir breaks women-only world record at World Athletics Half Marathon Championships Gdynia 2020

In an arena where endurance is king, speed also proved a precious commodity. In the end, Peres Jepchirchir needed both to reign supreme in the women’s race at the World Athletics Half Marathon Championships Gdynia 2020 on Saturday (17), powering to gold in 1:05:16, a world record* in a women-only race.

She led home Germany's Melat Yisak Kejeta, who smashed the European women-only record to take silver in 1:05:18, with Ethiopia’s Yalemzerf Yehualaw a close third in 1:05:19.

In a race blighted by falls, where three of the leading contenders saw their chances scuppered through unfortunate incidents, the race boiled down to a clash between those able to stay on their feet through the four laps around the streets of Gdynia.

On what was a cold, breezy morning alongside the Baltic Sea, the pace was scorching from the outset. Kenya’s Joyciline Jepkosgei was one of the chief aggressors, leading a pack of 13 through the first 5km in 15:20. Midway through the second lap the first casualties began to show from that group and it was whittled to eight, with Turkey’s Yasemin Can another keen to push things along.

Ethiopia’s Netsanet Gudeta’s race almost came to an abrupt stop as the leaders took a 90-degree turn on to the seafront, the defending champion taking a fall and losing several seconds to the leaders. It was a gap she would never close, the Ethiopian slipping farther behind during the third lap.

Can led a group of seven through 10km in 30:47, but on the third lap Jepchirchir made her first strong move, the women-only half marathon world record holder injecting a surge and putting many of those behind in visible distress.

At this point a trio of Ethiopians – Ababel Yeshaneh, Zeineba Yimer and Yehualaw – were coasting quietly in their slipstream along with Germany’s Kejeta, and as they turned away from the beach to head out on their final lap Yehualaw made her first move towards the front.

However, Jepkosgei soon seized the advantage again as they ran uphill, with a pack of seven reaching 15km in 46:24. The entire spectre of the race changed with 54 minutes on the clock. Yeshaneh surged to the front but soon began to drift towards the kerb due to the camber of the road, her legs tangling with Jepkosgei and both athletes hitting the deck.

Both were left some 30 metres in arrears by the time they were up and running, with Yehualaw, Can and Kejeta suddenly left alone out front, Yimer and Can also falling off pace as the leaders powered downhill towards the coast for the final time.

Yehualaw and Jepchirchir ran side by side, with Kejeta hanging tough in their slipstream, and as they turned for home with less than a kilometre to run the three ran side by side towards the finish.

Jepchirchir bided her time and took advantage as Yehualaw hesitated entering the finishing straight, the Kenyan 27-year-old digging in and surging clear to a memorable victory. Kejeta took more than three minutes off her personal best in second and the 28-year-old, who previously represented Ethiopia, was ecstatic with her runner-up spot.

"It's unbelievable," said Jepchirchir. "My goal was to win this race. I did not expect that I would beat the world record, but I realised that it could happen when we passed 20km. It was a little bit windy, but the course was good for me."

Back in third, Yehualaw led Ethiopia to gold in the team event to back up the title they won at the last edition two years ago, with Yimer’s 1:05:39 in fourth and Yeshaneh’s 1:05:41 in fifth giving them the quickest cumulative time with 3:16:39, smashing the championship record. Kenya took team silver with 3:18:10 while Germany took bronze with 3:28:42.

In a race of unprecedented depth, the first six women finished inside 66 minutes and the top nine finished inside 67 minutes.

(10/17/2020) ⚡AMP
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ONICO Gdynia Half Marathon

ONICO Gdynia Half Marathon

The date for Gdynia Half Marathon Mass start was moved from March to October 17,2020. This year's race will only be for Elite runners. The first race debuted in 2016, becoming one of the biggest half marathons in Poland in the first year. The race offers a unique opportunity to launch the spring season in Gdynia - "the city...

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Big Dog’s Backyard Ultra: Courtney Dauwalter wants to lift others up to find their limits so she does not ‘ruin the game’

No women has lasted as long as Courtney Dauwalter in the race with no end and this year she hopes to push her limits even further

Courtney Dauwalter says that two more years of ultra running and the memories of the 2018 Big Dog’s Backyard Ultra will allow her to go further than ever this year – and to lift everyone else as a result.

The American runner is entered into one of the most awful and awesome race concepts this weekend.

Big Dog’s is a 6.7km loop in Tennessee and runners have one hour to complete the loop. They can go as fast or as slow as they want, so long as they are lined up on the start line when the next hour begins. The race keeps going until there is just one runner left. The last person standing is allowed to complete one final lap to claim victory.

In 2018, Dauwalter went for 67 hours (431km), the longest any woman has lasted, and finished second to record-setting Johan Steele. She felt completely “empty”, shook Steele’s hand on the start line of the 68th hour and let him go on his victory lap.

“I had no charge left mentally or physically to go on,” the 35-year-old said. “I didn’t even attempt to see if there was any battery charge left. I didn’t think I had any.

“Johan is very talented, inspiring and a great human. He teases me now that I ruined the game for him, as the last person doesn’t get to go on. So, he teases me that I stopped his game early. I’m hoping that that will echo in my mind a little, ‘Don’t be the one to ruin the game for someone’,” Dauwalter, who is sponsored by sports nutrition brand Tailwind, said.

“I think hindsight is a trick. Now I can sit here two years later and say, ‘Why didn’t I even try?’ But in the moment, I felt like I had nothing left and I’d end up as road kill out on the loop because I was so empty.”

“I don’t regret it, because I don’t think that is useful. But I do hope that memory of wondering if I could have just gone out and done one more and seen how I felt, that will keep the fire going on the later laps this time,” she said.

The final few runners typically complete the lap in 45 to 50 minutes. Dauwalter plans to take care of her body earlier in the race by applying anti-chafe cream, changing her socks and shoes, and sleeping.

“I think every experience helps us. For sure, just having a few more years of ultras in general, and training in general, will help. But being able to picture Big’s especially, the set up and what it feels like on day two or three will help,” she said.

Dauwalter has run other races that last for days, such as winning the Moab 240 Mile Endurance Run by more than 10 hours.

“You have a little more choice in those long trail efforts when you can lay down and sleep whenever or wherever you want,” she said. “In this format, you get your 10 minutes per lap and that’s the only time you get to shut your eyes.”

“I think I didn’t do it well the first time and I think it showed up in a lot of ways. That feeling of being empty, not having energy for my brain and body to process from being sleep deprived. I hope we do it better, and if we don’t I hope I’m at least better at being sleep deprived,” she said.

“If you can shut down your brain for even just five minutes it makes a big difference.”

There are only 15 runners at the event this year and each is only allow one crew member due to coronavirus. Usually the field is international, but there will be simultaneous Big Dog’s going on around the world as a result of travel restrictions. Each race will end when there is just one runner left locally. A world champion will be declared as the last person standing in the last race still going.

“The motivation is not be the one to ruin the game and help the ones around me to stay in so we can all keep looking for our limits. It’s such a cool format that we all lift each other up by just stepping up to the start line,” Dauwalter said.

She has no target in mind. Having a target may result in a loss of motivation when it is passed, Dauwalter said. But last year’s champion Maggie Guterl has said she is aiming for 100 hours.

“I love it. It’s the exact thing you need out there. I’m excited to spend time with Maggie, and do those four mile loops. That’s all we have to do.”

“It’s such a cool format, the possibilities are unknown. How far can we go if we keep lining up?”

(10/17/2020) ⚡AMP
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What to Do If a Cougar Chases You—Like That Utah Runner

One hiker's recent encounter with a cougar was frightening enough to get the Humane Society of the United States to weigh in and offer survival tips.

On Saturday in Slate County, Utah, Kyle Burgess was chased by a cougar who was protecting her cubs for a horrifying six minutes, CBS reported. The 26-year-old appeared to be alone on his hike, and fortunately escaped unscathed after making loud noises at the ferocious feline.

The video of the encounter went viral, and even captured the attention of the Humane Society's president and CEO, Kitty Block. She tweeted a reminder of what to do if you see a cougar while hiking, and commended Burgess for his defense "The viral video of a runner & a mother cougar defending her kittens shows how critical it is to stay calm in these rare incidents," Block wrote on Tuesday. "He did the right thing slowly backing away & yelling. It's crucial to exit the conflict ASAP."

The Humane Society of the United States has also promoted its specific guidelines on what to do, should you encounter a cougar out in the wilderness.

First off, you shouldn't run if you see a cougar. "Running will provoke the predatory chasing behavior of cougars, as it would with other predators such as bears, coyotes, and wolves," the HSUS states. You should also pick up small children or pets that are with you.

Make sure to face the cougar directly, but keep your eyes on the cougar's feet. By avoiding looking into their eyes, you won't look aggressive.

If a cougar "displays aggressive behavior try to appear larger," you should raise your arms or "open your jacket over your head" to look larger as well. You can also do this by making noise; "yelling, blowing a whistle or an air horn" is recommended.

You can also use an umbrella to help fend off an attack by quickly opening and closing it while facing the cougar.

Just don't approach the cougar or make it feel cornered in. You should give it "ample space to run away" for when it decides to do so. If you also encounter the cubs, make sure that you don't "get between them and their mother."

In the rare instance that a cougar does attack, you should fight back any way that you can. In the past, people have fought back at these animals with sticks, their hands, baseball caps and garden tools. There are no repellants available for cougars specifically, but using pepper (capsaicin) spray or even a fire extinguisher, can prove to be helpful.

In the six-minute video of Burgess' brush with a cougar, viewers can see the creature following him in attack mode. "Go away!" he yells at the cougar. "Please, go away. I'm big and scary." He also made loud noises as the cougar approached him, baring its teeth.

"Dude, I don't feel like dying today," Burgess says at one point, while the cougar runs towards him, claws out. "Go with your babies." He curses under his breath while trying to escape the cougar. Ultimately, he throws a rock at the big cat, which sends it away.

"You see the two cubs and one kind of runs off, but then I didn't notice mom was right there and that's when I knew it was not a good situation to be in," Burgess told CBS News. "Those six minutes were so long for me."

(10/17/2020) ⚡AMP
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Jakob Ingebrigtsen and Kilian Jornet to square off in 10K road race

The young Norwegian track phenom and the seasoned Spanish ultrarunner will battle it out on the roads of Norway this weekend

Norway’s Jakob Ingebrigtsen will reportedly take on Spanish ultrarunning legend (and resident of Norway) Kilian Jornet in the Hytteplanmila 10K road race on Saturday. Ingebrigtsen set the course and Norwegian records at the race in 2019 when he ran a 27:54. This will be his first 10K since the run last year. According to the race website, Hytteplanmila will be the first 10K road race of Jornet’s career, although he has a wealth of experience training and racing across multiple distances. The rare track-trail crossover between Jornet and Ingebrigtsen is set to start at 7:30 a.m. local time.

Jornet’s credentials 

Jornet is one of the best trail and ultrarunners of all time. He has won so many of the world’s biggest races, from the Ultra-Trail du Mont Blanc to the Western States 100 and so many others. He also currently holds 14 official fastest known times, and he is the course record-holder at many races around the world. 

He opened the VK10K with a 29:57 vertical kilometre, which meant he had to run his 10K (on tired legs) in almost exactly 30 minutes to finish under one hour. Even on fresh legs, a 30-minute 10K would be impossible for most runners, but Jornet hammered out a 29:42, bringing his total time to 59:39. Unless he adds some wild ultra aspect to Saturday’s run, like jogging 60K to get to the race or something else ridiculous (which actually wouldn’t surprise us too much), Jornet should be able to produce another sub-30 run. 

Ingebrigtsen’s stats 

Ingebrigtsen has had a stellar season this year. In May, he broke the Norwegian 5K road record with a time of 13:28. A few weeks later, he set the European 2,000m record at the Impossible Games in Oslo. Later in the summer, he added the European 1,500m and Norwegian 3,000m records to his resume. He also won national championships in the 800m and 1,500m. Whenever he has raced, whether on the track or on the road, Ingebrigtsen has been dialled in and ready to compete at every event this year, and he hasn’t finished worse than second place. 

His 27:54 10K PB puts him in a tie for 10th all-time among Europeans, 41 seconds behind Swiss runner Julien Wanders‘s European record of 27:13 (and only 11 seconds off the second-fastest time ever run by a European). Ingebrigtsen could very well lower his own national record on Saturday and make a push for a spot higher on the all-time list. 

Who will win? 

There should be no debate here — Ingebrigtsen is going to win this race. The only questions are whether he will beat his own Norwegian record, and, if so, by how much? If he met Jornet on a trail or a course in the mountains, it might be a different story, but that’s not the case, and the Spaniard is entering Ingebrigtsen’s arena of choice on the weekend. Even though the race will likely end with Ingebrigtsen well ahead of the rest of the field, it will still be exciting to see how Jornet fares on the road and what he can do on fresh legs. 

(10/17/2020) ⚡AMP
by Running Magazine
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British middle-distance runner Laura Muir refocuses on Olympic goals

Training and development are built around peaking at the end of a four-year cycle, so when the 2020 Tokyo Games were pushed back to 2021 there was much anguish.

For Laura Muir, a genuine medal prospect, it was a case of years of planning and preparation being tossed out the window.

Muir, a trained vet, had put the rest of her life on the backburner as she chased the Olympic dream.

“It was hard because I had set everything on hold really to focus on Olympics this year,” she explained. “My whole life was revolving around that goal, to be honest. I had no other plans.

“When that went there was that sinking feeling of ‘Oh, what now?’

“Then we had the Europeans still on just for a while and then they were cancelled, not even postponed. It was gutting because the Olympics only come around once every four years and it was something I was really looking to perform well at.

“At the same time, around March time, I could see the way Covid-19 was developing around the world and I wasn’t going to be surprised by a postponement.

“I’m just glad it wasn’t cancelled but was put back to next year. Hopefully, it can go ahead in 2021 as is now planned.”

Despite the disruption, Muir still managed to produce some outstanding performances in the truncated athletics season.

She delivered three sub-four minute runs over 1500 metres, including the world lead time of 3min 57:40sec which secured victory in a top-class field in Berlin last month. That race was her fifth win in a row. In the midst of it, she also set a new British 1000m record.

But Muir didn’t have it all her own way. A few days after Berlin, Jemma Reekie beat her in the 800m at the Diamond League meeting in Rome.

With Tokyo looming, Muir is uncertain about her winter programme and will take time to work out a plan with long-serving mentor Andy Young, who was named Performance Coach of the Year at the Scottish Athletics awards and also has Reekie in his stable.

“Putting any plans in place for the winter or the months ahead is so difficult right now,” said Muir.

“I’ve resumed training and hope to get in a strong block now. Whether that is here, or abroad, I don’t know – when and where are a bit up in the air in terms of a foreign camp. We will have to see how things go.

 

(10/16/2020) ⚡AMP
by Graham Bean
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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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Sebastian Coe said on Friday he embraced new track technology that features pacemaking lights, a system used to great effect in two stunning world records last week

World Athletics president Sebastian Coe said on Friday he embraced new track technology that features pacemaking lights, a system used to great effect in two stunning world records last week.Ugandan Joshua Cheptegei (men's 10,000m) and Ethiopia's Letesenbet Gidey (women's 5,000m) blew two longstanding records apart in Valencia.

Both athletics had a team of metronomic pacemakers around them who utilised Wavelight technology -- a trackside visual time guidance system which lights up to indicate the world record pace."You have to innovate, there's no question about that," Coe said in Gdynia, Poland, ahead of Saturday's world half-marathon races. 

While acknowledging there was a balance to be struck, Coe argued that technological advances were paramount in attracting new audiences.

"You need to create a connection and the key connection is understanding.

"Pace lights I have no problem with. Our one-day meetings are about entertainment and I think Wavelight that allow people on television, to understand a little bit more about the incredible talent, the incredible talent, the incredible speeds our competitors are running at actually lends to the type of understanding I want."

Coe also argued that pacemakers had been around for decades, notably citing Roger Bannister's first sub-four-minute mile as a "pace-made event".

(10/16/2020) ⚡AMP
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World Half Marathon Championships

World Half Marathon Championships

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 that help to position València as the city of running. It has been the main contributor to the Valencia Marathon and Half Marathon for the past five years. The Spanish Federation...

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Grandma’s Marathon signs with ASICS a multi-year agreement as official shoe sponsor

Grandma’s Marathon – Duluth, Inc. today is announcing a multi-year agreement to make ASICS the official running shoe sponsor of Grandma’s Marathon. The 45th annual race weekend will take place next summer, scheduled for June 17-19, 2021.

As a presenting sponsor for the next three years, ASICS Corporation will have a prominent presence at all marathon weekend activities including the Health and Fitness Expo, William A. Irvin 5k, Garry Bjorklund Half Marathon, and Grandma’s Marathon.

The partnership will provide participants with access to custom training plans in the ASICS Runkeeper® app, ASICS-sponsored celebration opportunities, and other benefits through the OneASICS™ loyalty program.

Grandma’s Marathon is also renewing its partnership with Race Roster to continue as the official registration company of all the organization’s events – Grandma’s Marathon, Garry Bjorklund Half Marathon, William A. Irvin 5K, St. Fennessy 4K, Fitger’s 5K, Part Point 5-Miler, Minnesota Mile, and North End Nightmare 5K.

Race Roster is a subsidiary of ASICS Corporation and has been the registration platform of Grandma’s Marathon since 2017.

Shane Bauer, Grandma’s Marathon Executive Director: “ASICS is the ideal sponsor for Grandma’s Marathon events. They have a long history of uniquely meeting the needs of runners, race directors, and the running community by offering world-class race management, premium brand sponsorship, and marketing. This partnership brings the best of our worlds together while also enhancing our race day experience for participants. We look forward to working with them to support our running community.”

Alex Vander Hoeven, Race Roster & Runkeeper CEO: “We are thrilled to team up with Grandma’s Marathon and help participants train for this historical event. People often download the Runkeeper app to help them achieve their running goals. Our training plans are tailored to individual fitness levels and specific goals, so runners feel more confident and better prepared come race day. Race Roster has long supported this event from the race registration side. We are excited to make ASICS a part of that to take that partnership one step further.”

Grandma’s Marathon and ASICS officially launched their new partnership when registration for the 45th annual event opened on October 1, 2020.

(10/16/2020) ⚡AMP
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Grandmas Marathon

Grandmas Marathon

Grandma's Marathon began in 1977 when a group of local runners planned a scenic road race from Two Harbors to Duluth, Minnesota. There were just 150 participants that year, but organizers knew they had discovered something special. The marathon received its name from the Duluth-based group of famous Grandma's restaurants, its first major sponsor. The level of sponsorship with the...

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Two current world record-holders Peres Jepchirchir and Ababel Yeshaneh line up against one another this weekend

For the first time in the history of the championships, the women’s race at the World Athletics Half Marathon Championships Gdynia 2020 will have two current world record-holders for the distance as Peres Jepchirchir and Ababel Yeshaneh line up against one another on Saturday (17).

From 2013 onwards there have been separate world records in women’s roads events — one for women-only races, and one for mixed races. And this year both half marathon records have been broken with Ethiopia’s Yeshaneh clocking 1:04:31 at the Ras Al-Khaimah Half Marathon in February and Kenya’s Jepchirchir running 1:05:34 in a women-only race at the Prague 21.1K in September.

Jepchirchir’s performance is the more recent of the two, so there is little doubt over the 27-year-old’s form heading into Gdynia. She is also a past winner of the title, having won gold in Cardiff in 2016, and she went on to set a short-lived world record of 1:05:06 in Ras Al Khaimah in 2017.

She gave birth to daughter Natalia at the end of 2017 and so missed most of 2018, but she returned to form last year with victories at the Lisbon Half Marathon (1:06:54) and Saitama Marathon (2:23:50).

Yeshaneh, however, is a formidable opponent and she’ll be lifted by the memories of their one previous clash, at the 2016 Delhi Half Marathon, where she finished three places and 36 seconds ahead of Jepchirchir.

Yeshaneh finished ninth in the 10,000m at the 2013 World Championships and 14th in the 5000m at the 2016 Olympic Games before devoting most of her time to road running. She has finished in the top two in 10 of her past 12 half marathons and has impressed over the full marathon distance, placing second in Chicago last year in a PB of 2:20:51.

Her final outing before heading to Poland was Ethiopia’s 15km trial race, in which she finished fourth. Knowing that she only needed to finish in the top six, though, she could well have been doing just enough to secure her spot on the team, wanting to stay fresh for Gdynia.

Saturday’s race isn’t just about the two world record-holders, though. Netsanet Kebede Gudeta and Joyciline Jepkosgei, the gold and silver medallists from 2018 – and, incidentally, the previous world record-holders of the two women’s half marathon marks—will also line up in Gdynia.

Gudeta won in Valencia two years ago in a women-only world record of 1:06:11, comfortably beating pre-race favourite Jepkosgei, who in 2017 had set two outright world records for the distance.

Since then, however, both women have had mixed fortunes. Gudeta hasn’t won a half marathon since 2018, but she equalled the Ethiopian record of 1:05:45 in 2019. She also failed to finish the 10,000m at the World Championships in Doha, but Saturday’s race could be an opportunity for redemption for the 29-year-old.

And while Jepkosgei — the fastest woman in history over 5km, 10km, 15km and 20km—hasn’t quite yet returned to her record-breaking form from 2017, the 26-year-old Kenyan impressed at last year’s New York City Marathon to win on her debut at the distance in 2:22:38, just a few seconds shy of the long-standing course record. Jepchirchir and Jepkosgei are joined on the Kenyan team by Rosemary Wanjiru, Dorcas Kimeli and Brillian Kipkoech.

 

(10/16/2020) ⚡AMP
by World Athletics
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World Half Marathon Championships

World Half Marathon Championships

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 that help to position València as the city of running. It has been the main contributor to the Valencia Marathon and Half Marathon for the past five years. The Spanish Federation...

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Asics is inviting teams of runners globally, to complete a virtual marathon, the challenge has been designed to help runners feel connected.

Asics is inviting runners globally to form teams and complete a marathon distance between them in the fastest collective time possible.

The challenge, based on a Japanese long-distance, relay-race format called Ekiden, has been created by Asics following research showing that while the popularity of running has soared through lockdown, two-thirds of runners globally are missing the feeling of competing against others.

Participants in the "Asics World Ekiden 2020" will need to log their times via the Asics Runkeeper app between November 11 and 22.

Distances for the challenge can be completed either at once or accumulated during the challenge term. There will also be a customisable in-race audio experience.

Teams can be formed of up to six people, with each "marathon" split into six legs of varying distances. At the end of each leg of the race, participants will need to pass a digital tasuki, the narrow band of fabric used in the traditional Japanese Ekiden, to their teammate.

(10/15/2020) ⚡AMP
by Fayola Douglas
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Joshua Cheptegei of Uganda says he’s under no pressure to deliver at Saturday’s World Half Marathon Championships in Gdynia

Distance running’s triple world record holder Joshua Cheptegei of Uganda says he’s under no pressure to deliver at Saturday’s World Half Marathon Championships in Gdynia, Poland.

Cheptegei said he is not really bothered by the weather and competition in Gdynia, having already achieved what he had planned for from track despite the Covid-19 challenges.

“For me what is important is that I finished my track season well. A debut in the half marathon won’t put much pressure on me,” said Cheptegei, who is proud of having set two world records within seven weeks this year in the 5,000 and 10,000 metres.

The weather in Gdynia will range from between six to 11 degrees on the competition day.

The Ugandan lowered the previous mark of 26:17.53 set by Kenenisa Bekele on August 26, 2005 in Brussels to cement his standing as the new track sensation.

The 24-year-old 10,000m world champion had on August 14 in Monaco wiped out Bekele’s 16-year-old world record over the 5,000m after breaking the five-kilometre world record on the streets of Monaco in February.

In his first track race since the advent of coronavirus early this year, Cheptegei clocked 12:35.35 to beat Bekele’s previous record by two seconds.

Heading into Valencia last week, Cheptegei only had the 18th quickest time over 10,000m with a best in Doha of 26:48.36, over half a minute outside the record.

The Ugandan team to Poland this weekend also has 2018 World Under-20 Championships 10,000m silver medallist Jacob Kiplimo, who also played second fiddle to Cheptegei in last year’s World Cross Country Championships in Uganda’s 1-2 finish.

Kiplimo’s only other half marathon experience is his victory at Kampala Half Marathon in 1:01:53 in November last year.

Others in the Uganda team are Moses Kibet (1:00:59), Victor Kiplagat (1:00:16), Abel Chebet (1:01:41) and Stephen Kissa (1:00:00).

(10/15/2020) ⚡AMP
by Ayumba Ayodi
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World Half Marathon Championships

World Half Marathon Championships

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 that help to position València as the city of running. It has been the main contributor to the Valencia Marathon and Half Marathon for the past five years. The Spanish Federation...

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Kenya’s Daniel Wanjiru banned following doping violations, he won't be allowed to compete again until December 2023

On Wednesday, the Athletics Integrity Unit (AIU) announced that it gave Kenyan marathoner Daniel Wanjiru a four-year ban following an Athlete Biological Passport (ABP) violation. The 28-year-old Wanjiru has big wins to his name from the Amsterdam Marathon in 2016 and London Marathon in 2017, as well as a podium finish at the 2019 Vitality Big Half Marathon.

With race cancellations around the world, he hasn’t missed out on many racing opportunities during his suspension (which was issued by the AIU in April), but he is now officially banned from competition until December 8, 2023.  

What is an Athlete Biological Passport?

Some drug tests can detect specific substances, but ABPs are more general, and according to the World Anti-Doping Agency, they monitor “biological variables over time that indirectly reveal the effects of doping.” Multiple rounds of blood tests are used to determine what the “normal” blood levels are for each individual athlete. Once this is set, any future changes or jumps in an athlete’s levels likely mean that they are doping.

According to the AIU’s disciplinary report on Wanjiru, he accepted a “volunteer provisional suspension” in December, agreeing not to race at all until a decision was made regarding his fate in the sport. Because of this, his ban retroactively starts on December 9, 2019. Four years from then, on December 8, 2023, the ban will be complete. As written in the report, Wanjiru told the AIU that he “did not have the medical or other means or motive to dope in any of the ways alleged, or at all.” 

In addition to his ban, the AIU ordered that Wanjiru forfeit any results he recorded following the test in question, which was taken on March 9, 2019. He will also have to repay any prize money he won after this date. Unfortunately for Wanjiru, he ran all three of his races in 2019 after March 9, starting with his third-place finish at the Vitality Big Half Marathon on March 10, an 11th place at the London Marathon in April and finally another 11th at a 10,000m race in Kenya in July. 

(10/15/2020) ⚡AMP
by Ben Snider-McGrath
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2020 Victoria Falls Marathon will go virtually

Victoria Falls Marathon race director John Addison writes:We have decided to do this year’s event on December 13 as VIRTUAL.

Thanks to the amazing new features of the SportSplits Tracker app with REAL-TIME REMOTE RACING™, you can #RunVicFalls the virtual way from anywhere in the world.

This is absolutely incredible technology. It’s in real time, on the same route as the real event, with all the key points coming up on your phone as you pass them: the Bridge, the Zambezi River, the Big Tree etc.

(10/15/2020) ⚡AMP
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Victoria Falls Marathon

Victoria Falls Marathon

2020 race was moved to December 13. Developed in conjunction with the National Athletics Association of Zimbabwe, the Victoria Falls Marathon is an AIMS (Association of International Marathon and Distance Races) registered event. The marathon provides a platform for both local and international runners to pit themselves against the best! The marathon route is varied in terms of terrain, with...

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Romania’s 2008 Olympic champion Constantina Dita has been named an ambassador for the World Athletics Half Marathon Championships Gdynia 2020

Dita competed at eight editions of the World Half Marathon Championships and earned seven medals in the process, making her one of the most successful athletes in the history of the event. Her double victory in Edmonton in 2005, taking individual and team gold medals, remains one of the highlights of her career.

“I was surprised (to win by a significant margin),” she said of her 2005 triumph. “I was running a normal pace but maybe the opposition found it very cold. For me, it was good weather. I love to run in the rain.

“It was such a happy feeling to win my first gold medal at a major championship. For me, it was amazing and it was close to what it would have felt like to win a gold medal at the track and field World Championships.

“To win my gold medal was a great achievement,” she added. “It gave me much encouragement to run better in other races.”

Dita did exactly that, and three years later she won the marathon gold medal at the 2008 Olympic Games in Beijing.

Along with her major championship medals, Dita was also successful at big city marathons. She won the 2004 Chicago Marathon and finished second in 2005. She also made it on to the podium at three editions of the London Marathon.

Today Dita divides her time between her native Romania and the USA, and is still involved in the sport as founder and president of the annual Bucharest International 10km.

She still runs and last year she completed the Berlin (3:07) and New York City (3:30) marathons. She hopes to one day complete the full set of six Marathon Majors by running the Boston Marathon.

(10/15/2020) ⚡AMP
by World Athletics
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World Half Marathon Championships

World Half Marathon Championships

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 that help to position València as the city of running. It has been the main contributor to the Valencia Marathon and Half Marathon for the past five years. The Spanish Federation...

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Utah runner Jessi Morton-Langehaug wins Moab 240 in 3 days and 8 hours

Utah runner Jessi Morton-Langehaug won the Moab 240 on Monday, completing the 240-mile (386K) route in 80 hours, nine minutes and 42 seconds. She finished well ahead of second-place finisher Jodi Semonell, who crossed the line in almost 83 hours flat.

Third place went to Christie Haswell, who won her spot on the podium with a finishing time of 83 hours and 44 minutes. This was a Moab 240 debut for all three women.

How it all shook out

Morton-Langehaug led early on, and for the first few checkpoints, she was ahead of Semonell, Haswell and the rest of the field. After the first day of racing, though, she was caught and passed by Semonell and Kamloops, B.C., resident Jessie Thomson-Gladish. She didn’t let the pair enjoy the lead for long, though, first passing Semonell after about 28 hours and then Thomson-Gladish at around the 41-hour mark. At one point, Thomson-Gladish had a multi-hour lead over Morton-Langehaug, but she couldn’t hold off the charging Utahan, and she ultimately faded to a sixth-place finish.

Semonell passed the Canadian just before the end of Day Two en route to her spot on the podium beside Morton-Langehaug and Haswell. The top three women were all far off Courtney Dauwalter‘s overall course record of 57 hours, 55 minutes and 13 seconds, but Morton-Langehaug’s 80-hour run is the fourth-fastest time ever posted by a woman on the 240-mile course.

Morton-Langehaug’s biggest win 

This is easily the biggest win of Morton-Langehaug’s career, and it’s her fourth top finish of 2020. Her other race wins this year came at a 55K in March and a 100-miler in May (both in Utah) and a virtual marathon that she also ran in May. According to her Ultrasignup profile, the Moab 240 is also by far the longest race that Morton-Langehaug has ever run, with her next longest run coming in at 100 miles.  

(10/14/2020) ⚡AMP
by Ben Snider-McGrath
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Kenyan Benson Kipruto will take time out after he picked up a hamstring injury during the London Marathon

Former Toronto Marathon champion Bernard Kipruto will not participate in any races this year after he picked a hamstring injury during the London Marathon.

Kipruto was disappointed with his seventh place finish at the race despite finishing one place better than top favourite Eliud Kipchoge, who placed eighth.

“I had prepared well for the race to win but I had challenges. I was one of the best competitors but the injury slowed me down hence I got this result that I did not plan for,” Kipruto said.

Apart from the injury, Kipruto also blamed the blistery weather conditions in London for his under-whelming performance.

“I don’t know how Ethiopians train in such wet and windy conditions but when it is sunny, we always beat them hands down,” he said.

Nonetheless, his performance at London Marathon was much improved from the Boston Marathon in September 2020, where he finished 10th.

Kipruto said he has taken vital lessons from this year that will be useful as he trails his focus on next year.

“After the race, I took time to review my performance. It was tough. This time, I want to get a good rest before deciding with my coaches on the plan for next year. I will be looking to participate in most of the major races next year, especially marathon races,” he said.

(10/14/2020) ⚡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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Athletics Canada team withdraws from the World Half-Marathon Championships

On Wednesday morning, Athletics Canada made the decision to withdraw its team from the upcoming World Half-Marathon Championships set to take place this weekend in Gdynia, Poland.

With 24 hours until their flight, athletes were notified that the team would no longer be participating. On the women’s side, Rachel Cliff was the lone Canadian representative and on the men’s side Canada was sending Trevor Hofbauer, Justin Kent, Ben Preisner, Thomas Toth and Phil Parrot-Migas. 

This event was postponed in March due to COVID-19, but is now set to go on Saturday. Several other countries, including the U.S. and Japan, pulled out of the championship in September, citing safety reasons. 

“This was a very difficult decision, but we think it is in the best interests of the athletes and the team staff,” Simon Nathan, Athletics Canada’s high-performance director, said in a press release. “We know that this is disappointing news, but we have made this decision with our team’s health and safety at heart.”

While Athletics Canada officials were confident that WA was doing everything possible to protect participants, they felt there were too many risks that nobody could be expected to control.

“When we considered the risks associated with flying and transfers within airports, with the athletes being in publicly-accessed common areas like hotel lobbies and common dining areas, and the unknown of individuals’ compliance to safe protocols, we felt it was prudent not to expose our team to those risks,” said Dr. Paddy McCluskey, Athletics Canada’s Chief Medical Officer.

(10/14/2020) ⚡AMP
by Madeleine Kelly
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World Half Marathon Championships

World Half Marathon Championships

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 that help to position València as the city of running. It has been the main contributor to the Valencia Marathon and Half Marathon for the past five years. The Spanish Federation...

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Sifan Hassan will not be racing at the World Athletics Half Marathon Championships in Gdynia

European 10,000m record-breaker has decided to end her season early

Sifan Hassan will not be racing at the World Athletics Half Marathon Championships in Gdynia, instead deciding to end her season, which has included world and European record-breaking performances, earlier than originally planned.

The 27-year-old smashed Dire Tune’s world one-hour record by covering 18,930m on the track at the Van Damme Memorial meeting in Brussels last month before she ran 29:36.67 in the rain to break Paula Radcliffe’s European 10,000m record in Hengelo on Saturday.

The world 1500m and 10,000m champion had next been set to line up as part of the Netherlands team at the World Athletics Half Marathon Championships in Poland on Saturday (October 17), where she would have been among the favorites, but she has decided with her coach Tim Rowberry to end her season.

After a short break, she will begin preparing for Olympic year.

“It has been a tough year, the uncertainty of competitions going ahead was always part of my training regime,” said Hassan. “To focus and push yourself every day in training is difficult, especially when you don’t know if it will be possible to deliver performances in a competition environment.

“The season was short, but the lead up to it was long. Therefore I decided to give myself some rest and focus for next year. I want to make sure I will be in top shape physically and mentally next year at the Olympic Games.

“I am very proud of my performances this season, the world hour record and the European record this weekend. Those results give me good faith that I am able to reach my highest potential, also in uncertain times. Therefore I look forward to next year with a lot of confidence.”

(10/14/2020) ⚡AMP
by Athletics Weekly
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World Half Marathon Championships

World Half Marathon Championships

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 that help to position València as the city of running. It has been the main contributor to the Valencia Marathon and Half Marathon for the past five years. The Spanish Federation...

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Head coach Patrick Makau is confident that Kenya will dominate World Half Marathon Championships

Head coach Patrick Makau is confident that his team for the World Half Marathon Championships due Saturday in Gdynia, Poland will win both the team and individual titles.

Makau, who won silver medals at the 2007 Udine and 2008 Rio de Janeiro editions, said he is aware of stiff competition and the adverse weather that awaits them in Poland.

Makau said defending champion Geoffrey Kamworor might be missing in action but reckons that the selected team led by Ras Al Khaimah (RAK) and Prague Half Marathon champion Kibiwott Kandie and 2017 World Cross Country Championships silver medallist Leonard Barsoton is equal to the task.

Makau, a former world marathon record holder, indicated that the women’s team is the finest ever with on form 2016 world half champion Peres Jepchirchir back in the team and Joycilline Jepkosgei out to make amends after settling for silver in Valencia 2018.

“This is a strong team and I can tell you the athletes are focused on the task ahead. They are determined to deliver,” said Makau.

Kamworor sealed his third consecutive title when he won in Valencia in 2018 in 1:00:02 as compatriots Barsaton, Barselius Kipyego and Jorum Okombo finished 12th, 15th and 18th. Alex Oloitiptip failed to finish the race.

Jepkosgei and Pauline Kaveke failed the test, settling for silver and bronze in Valencia as Netsanet Gudeta claimed victory not only in championship record but also in women’s only world record time of 1:06:11.

Kenya would also lose the team titles to Ethiopia.

“Kandie posted a world lead in half marathon with victory in 58:38 in Prague, Czech in September. This goes without saying that he will be the man to watch. We shall really bank on Barsaton’s experience,” Makau said adding that Bernard Kipkorir (59:07), Bernard Kimeli (59:07) and Morris Munene (59:22) also look strong by virtue of having good times.

Makau noted that even though the women’s team will be under pressure to deliver with the defending champion coming from Ethiopia, having Jepchirchir, who is fresh from setting a new women’s only world record in Prague with a time of 1:05:34, is a major boost.

“Peres is back and looks stronger after maternity leave and is eager to reclaim her title. One can easily see the hunger in Joyciline that she is ready to upgrade her silver to something better this time around,” said Makau. “They are ready to neutralise the weather and any challenge posed.”

(10/13/2020) ⚡AMP
by Ayumba Ayodi
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World Half Marathon Championships

World Half Marathon Championships

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 that help to position València as the city of running. It has been the main contributor to the Valencia Marathon and Half Marathon for the past five years. The Spanish Federation...

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2020 Millinocket Marathon cancelled due to the pandemic

The Millinocket Marathon has been cancelled due to concerns over COVID-19. The annual race was to be held on December 5th. The conditions in the state have not improved to the level they would be able to hold the race. The marathon had no fee to run, but competitors and fans were asked to spend what they could in town to help the region economically. We spoke with race director Gary Allen who still hopes to help.

“You know cancelling the Millinocket Marathon was one of the toughest decisions I’ve made at this point. You know the business economy, this turned into something bigger than I ever imagined, I think it helped their morale as much as their pocketbooks.

They really deserved a break and it is heartbreaking for me not to be able to bring this break to them,” says Millinocket Marathon race director Gary Allen, “I’m hoping we can appeal to runners to dig into their pocketbooks to purchase something online or contribute to good causes up there.

Or even not cancel their hotel rooms and just let the hotels take the income from that as a way to get through this period. We are definitely going to be coming up with ways runners can still “run Millinocket” so to speak and make a difference.”

Gary also organizes the MDI Marathon which would have been this coming weekend. He hopes they will be able to continue both annual races next year.

(10/13/2020) ⚡AMP
by Eric Gullickson
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Millinocket Marathon

Millinocket Marathon

The Millinocket Marathon & Half has again joined forces with the Mount Desert Island Marathon, Half & Relay to create the Sea to Summit Maine Race Series, featuring two amazing events and a very special finishers medallion! This FREE event was started in 2015 to help a struggling Maine mill town that has been devastated by the closing of their...

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2021 Miami Marathon & Half-Marathon Cancelled due to the coronavirus concerns

The 2021 Miami Marathon and Half-Marathon are now canceled over COVID concerns.

Organizers broke the news Monday night, saying, in part:

“Believe me when I say we are devastated. This will be the first time we are unable to host this event since its inception in 2003, however the health and well-being of our running community is of utmost importance. Due to coronavirus-related concerns for our runners, spectators, volunteers, staff, vendors and the numerous partners and essential workers that support us throughout race weekend, we made the difficult decision to cancel Miami’s premiere endurance event.”

The races were supposed to take place on Jan. 31.

Registered participants will be emailed on Oct. 26 to choose whether they want to defer or switch their entry.

Those who defer can participate in the rescheduled 2022 event. Participants who decide to switch will be given the following options:

Access to a free online program leading up to the virtual event in January

Free entry into the Virtual 2021 Life Time Tropical 5K (Jan. 17), Virtual Half Marathon (Jan. 24) and Virtual Full Marathon (Jan. 31)

Guaranteed entry into the participant capped 2022 Life Time Miami Marathon and Half Marathon

Donate their registration fee to the Miami-Dade County Public

Get a refund for their registration fee (minus processing fees).

(10/13/2020) ⚡AMP
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The Miami Marathon

The Miami Marathon

Over the past 16 years of the existence of the current Miami Marathon, there was only just over 90 athletes who had run every single event. Before the inception of the Miami Marathon as we know it now (est. 2003), the race was originally known as the Orange Bowl Marathon which began in the late 1970s. One of our very...

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Abu Dhabi Marathon has been postponed until 2021 due to COVID-19 concerns

The COVID-19 pandemic has forced organizers to postpone the 2020 ADNOC Abu Dhabi Marathon until next year.

Thousands of runners had already signed up to compete in the event which was due to take place on December 11.

But with the public’s health and safety remaining the organisers’ "top priority" the competition has been called off for 2020 as the search begins for a new date in 2021.

Aref Hamad Al Awani, secretary general of the Abu Dhabi Sports Council, insisted implementing safety and precautionary measures in every event staged in the capital city of the United Arab Emirates (UAE) was key.

"With such an overwhelming response, both within the UAE and the region, the Sports Council is looking forward to organizing this popular event on another date during next year," said Al Awani.

"We are deeply committed to implementing the highest safety standards and precautionary measures in all global and community sporting events held in Abu Dhabi.

"This is based on the instructions of the competent Government agencies emphasizing great attention to the safety and health of everyone.

"Under its exceptional efforts in managing the optimal handling of the crisis and with the joint coordination with all concerned parties it led us to postpone the third edition of the ADNOC Abu Dhabi Marathon from December 2020 to 2021, in the context of ensuring the safety of everyone.

"We now look forward to welcoming all participants and unite with the solidarity and support of each other in overcoming these unfavorable times."

Kenyan duo Reuben Kipyego and Vivian Kiplagat came out on top in last year's event.

Race organizers said every runner registered for this year’s postponed event would be able to keep their place for next year with refunds given out to those that are unable to compete in 2021.

(10/13/2020) ⚡AMP
by Geoff Berkeley
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ADNOC Abu Dhabi Marathon

ADNOC Abu Dhabi Marathon

The Abu Dhabi Marathon is shaping up to being first class marathon for both elite runners and average runners as well. Take in the finest aspects of Abu Dhabi's heritage, modern landmarks and the waters of the Arabian Gulf, at this world-class athletics event, set against the backdrop of the Capital's stunning architecture.The race offered runners of all abilities the...

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Former Africa Cross Country Champion Leonard Barsoton, banks on team work to take down the Ugandans

Japan-based Leonard Barsoton has said that Kenya will rely on team work to down the challenge of Uganda and Ethiopia at the World Half Marathon Championships this Saturday in Gdynia, Poland.

Kenyan athletes will be heading to the world road race intent on retaining the men’s title currently held  by Geoffrey Kamworor  following his triumph in Valencia, Spain in 2018.

Kamworor won in 1:00:02 ahead of Bahrain’s Abraham Cheroben, who timed 1:00:22 while Eritrea’s Aron Kifle was third in 1:00:31.

This year Kamworor will not be competing but a strong team has been selected by Athletics Kenya and vowed to keep the crown home.

Kibiwott Kandie, fresh from winning Prague Half Marathon, will lead his compatriots Morris Munene, Japan-based Leonard Barsoton, Bernard Kipkorir and Bernard Kimeli in the Gdynia assault.

Nation Sport caught up with the 2014 Africa Cross Country champion Barsoton in Eldoret, Uasin Gishu County where he had gone for the mandatory  Covid-19 tests a requirement before their travel.

With the defending champion Kamworor missing in the start list, Barsoton said Kenya’s work was cut out for them particularly considering the threat set by double world record holder in 5,000m and 10,000m Joshua Cheptegei of Uganda.

“We shall run as a team. The challenge is that we have been training differently and everyone has his own techniques of reacting but we hope for the best,” he said.

The in-form Cheptegei will lead a Ugandan team that also has Moses Kibet, Jacob Kiplimo, Abel Chebet and Stephen Kissa.Barsoton, whose career has been on the rise since he relocated to Japan in 2012, two years after completing high school, is relishing the challenge.

He has competed in the last three editions of the World Half Marathon Championship and will no doubt be a key plank in Team Kenya’s strategy to keep the men’s crown.

In Valencia, Barsoton finished 12th in a time of 1:01:14, a result he was not happy with but on the positive, learned about his shortcoming. He said he had a problem when he entered the race which he traced to his training and has worked to ensure he was ready for the Poland race.

My training has gone on well and we are ready to travel and meet other competitors after a long wait due to the coronavirus.

“It’s not easy when you are training alone because we are used to group training which pushes you to the limit. I believe since April I have done enough and I will be ready to fight for a podium finish on Saturday,” he said.

(10/12/2020) ⚡AMP
by Bernard Rotich
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World Half Marathon Championships

World Half Marathon Championships

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 that help to position València as the city of running. It has been the main contributor to the Valencia Marathon and Half Marathon for the past five years. The Spanish Federation...

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What the fastest runners can learn from Joshua Cheptegei

Joshua Cheptegei made history on Wednesday when he set the 10,000m world record with a 26:11.00 run in Valencia. Cheptegei is arguably the best runner alive, and while he is riding an incredible high right now, it wasn’t long ago that he faced an enormous low after a massive mid-race collapse in 2017. Refusing to let this derail his career, Cheptegei pushed forward, and that is why he made it to where he is today.

While you probably won’t ever come close to Cheptegei’s level, that doesn’t mean you can’t learn from his career. If you’re facing disappointments or tough times in running, channel your inner Cheptegei and trust that you’ll eventually climb out of this rut. 

In front of a home crowd at the 2017 World Cross Country Championships in Kampala, Uganda, Cheptegei, then 20 years old, was on his way to the biggest win of his young career. Cheptegei had led for most of the race, and he had a 50-metre lead on Kenya’s Geoffrey Kamworor in second place. With less than a kilometre to go and the championship within reach, Cheptegei began to unravel, and he was eventually passed, not just by Kamworor, but by the next 28 runners as well. It was one of the biggest implosions in running history, and Cheptegei went from first place to 30th in the blink of an eye.

Many people would have let this result define them, but not Cheptegei. Later that same year, he ran to a silver medal in the 10,000m at the world championships. In 2018, he won gold in the 5,000m and 10,000m at the Commonwealth Games, and he ended the year with the 15K world record. The following year, he upped his game once more, first redeeming himself with a win at the World Cross Country Championships in Denmark, then winning 10,000m world championship gold in Doha. His finale for 2019 was another world-record performance, this time in the 10K (although his mark was bettered by Rhonex Kipruto in early 2020). 

Finally, in 2020 — the season that almost didn’t happen because of COVID-19 — Cheptegei had the year of his life, breaking world records in the 5K on the road in February, the 5,000m in August and then the 10,000m on Wednesday. 

Odds are that you won’t have a collapse like Cheptegei did in Kampala in 2017, but even if you do, he’s proof that you can recover from it. Everyone will have slumps in their careers, whether in training or racing or both. But if you believe in your training and trust in your abilities, you’ll eventually leave those troubles behind, replacing them with PBs, race wins and great results.  

(10/12/2020) ⚡AMP
by Ben Snider-McGrath
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Bucharest and Riga Marathons suffer last-minute cancellation

Both the Riga and Bucharest marathons were cancelled at the last moment at the weekend.

The Riga organizers stated: “Due to a sudden spike of covid-19 cases in Latvia and Government regulations, the 30th Rimi Riga Marathon was not be able to take place in person on 11 October, but virtually. That means you either have to register at our Virtual Club and run the distance of your choice, or, if virtual running is too much of a hassle for you, just run a distance of your choice during marathon weekend.”

In Bucharest, the race organization announced: “At the request of the authorities, the marathon race of professional runners within Raiffeisen Bank Bucharest Marathon will no longer be held, given the current situation [the number of cases of COVID-19 in Bucharest has reached 2.28/1000 inhabitants]. This decision does not affect runners registered for the virtual races who will participate individually, under the conditions initially announced, between 11-18 October on the route and in the time slot they choose.”

“Public health experts have alerted authorities about the real risk to athletes coming to Bucharest to participate in the Marathon. We particularly regret that this decision must be taken so soon before the date announced for the event. However, we consider that it is an absolutely necessary decision.”

“We, the Bucharest Running Club team, together with the event partners, did everything possible for the physical event to take place in complete safety for professional runners. We hope that those qualities specific to the marathon runner: determination, endurance, planning – will help those who had prepared to compete to overcome this moment. It is a difficult moment, especially since the runners are right now in Bucharest, some of them from other continents”, said Valeria van Groningen, President of Bucharest Running Club.

(10/12/2020) ⚡AMP
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Lattelecom Riga Marathon

Lattelecom Riga Marathon

If you have never been to Riga then, running a marathon or half-marathon could be a good reason to visit one of the most beautiful cities on the Baltic Sea coast. Marathon running has a long history in Riga City and after 27 years it has grown to welcome 33,000 runners from 70 countries offering five race courses and...

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Olympian Kara Goucher, Whose Grandfather Died from COVID, Responds to Trump's 'Tone-Deaf' Comments

Olympic runner Kara Goucher is calling out President Donald Trump for his "tone-deaf" remarks downplaying the severity of COVID-19 as her grandfather was "suffering greatly" and later died from the coronavirus.

Just hours before her grandfather's death Tuesday night, the athlete joined Anderson Cooper on CNN's Full Circle to discuss her grandfather's battle with COVID-19 and how she felt "disrespected" by the president's recent comments.

After Trump was discharged from the hospital and returned to the White House Monday night, he released a video message on social media, in which he asserted that the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) — which has killed over 210,000 people in the U.S. alone — is nothing to be concerned about, in his opinion.

"One thing that's for certain: don't let it dominate you. Don't be afraid of it. You're gonna beat it. We have the best medical equipment, we have the best medicines, all developed recently. And you're gonna beat it," the 74-year-old said.

The message echoed a tweet Trump posted earlier in the day, in which he wrote: "Don’t be afraid of Covid. Don’t let it dominate your life. We have developed, under the Trump Administration, some really great drugs & knowledge. I feel better than I did 20 years ago!"

Goucher said she was packing a bag to fly to Minnesota to see her grandfather, Calvin Haworth, for "one last time" when her sister forwarded Trump's message to her.

"I just felt really disrespected, I felt like my grandfather was disrespected, I felt like all the people who have been suffering through this were disrespected," Goucher told Cooper of the president's comments, trying to hold back tears.

"It just felt so tone-deaf and just really not the right thing to say," she said. "To say ‘Don’t let it dominate your life' — this is my life. This is his life. He is literally taking his last very painful breaths."

While the Olympian said she was "glad that the president got top care," not everyone can be so lucky.

"That is not the reality for hundreds of thousands of other people and their family members," she explained. "It just felt very dismissive."

"I was just not happy about that tweet at all," she added. "[My grandfather's] life is worthy and he deserves to be respected."

Goucher told Cooper that she and Haworth had a "rich, long relationship" as he raised the athlete and her sisters after their father passed away.

The professional runner said her grandfather was "contributing to [her] life and so many other lives" through his final moments.

She expressed the importance of having compassion in times like these and to "stop making this political."

"This needs to be about compassion and caring for your fellow citizens and doing what’s right to protect other people," she said. "This is a loss that shouldn’t be happening. We should’ve been able to see him in the last seven months and we should be able to sit there and hold his hand right now and we can’t."

"Please show compassion and think of life bigger than just yourself," she concluded.

Goucher announced her grandfather's death late Tuesday night on Twitter.

"Fight on Papa," he wrote alongside a picture of her family at her wedding. "He would be overwhelmed with the support he has received from you all."

(10/11/2020) ⚡AMP
by People Magazine
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