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I was overcome with sadness - Kenyan Kipchoge said after the London Marathon postponement

Kenyan Eliud Kipchoge took two weeks to get over the news of the London Marathon postponement, it was revealed on Wednesday.

The race was scheduled for April, with Kipchoge the defending champion, before it was postponed and rescheduled for October due to the novel coronavirus pandemic.

“It was painful for me when London was postponed,” Kipchoge told Runner’s World.

“I was at peak fitness before that race. I took two weeks to be sad, and then I went back to training. This is life.”

Kipchoge set the men’s marathon record of 2:01:39 at the Berlin Marathon in 2018, and in October last year became the first man to break two-hours for the 42.2km distance in an unofficial challenge run in Vienna.

Known as the Ineos159 Challenge, Kipchoge with a series of different pacemakers clocked 1:59:40 to become the first person to break two hours for the marathon distance.

This weekend, Kipchoge will be taking part in a virtual 42km relay event called “M A R A T H O N”.

Ethiopia’s Kenenisa Bekele, Uganda’s Joshua Cheptegei and Kenyan Geoffrey Kamworor will also be participating.

That high-powered quartet will take part in a the team event on Saturday and Sunday which invites runners from around the world to join teams of four to complete a full marathon together, alone.

(06/06/2020) ⚡AMP
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Virgin London Marathon

Virgin London Marathon

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

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Athletics Kenya say Olympic marathon team not cast in stone

Athletics Kenya could make changes to its marathon teams to the Tokyo Olympic Games basing on form.

The federation’s senior deputy president in charge of competitions, Paul Mutwii, disclosed that a lot could happen between now and the Olympic Games in 2021 after the action was deferred by one year owing to the coronavirus pandemic.

Mutwii was speaking on Thursday in reaction to the new Olympic qualification guidelines issued by World Athletics for July 23 to August 8, 2021.

The Games were postponed from July 24 to August 9 this year to the same period next year owing to concerns over the coronavirus spread.

The qualifying period for track and field events for the Olympic will now end on June 29, 2021, just 23 days before the start of the world’s biggest sporting bonanza.

In its four-year strategic plan and Olympic qualifying process, World Athletics says the marathon and race walk entry period will elapse on May 31, 2021.

World marathon record holders Eliud Kipchoge and Brigid Kosgei were on January 31 this year picked lead “Team Kenya” over the 42-kilometre race at the Tokyo Olympics.

The men's team also has World Championships marathon bronze medallist Amos Kipruto and Boston and Chicago Marathon champion Lawrence Cherono.

Bedan Karoki and Titus Ekiru are reserves.

Besides Kosgei, the women’s team has 2018 London Marathon champion Vivian Cheruiyot, world champion Ruth Chepng'etich with Valary Aiyabei and Sally Chepyego the reserves.

(06/06/2020) ⚡AMP
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400m world champion, Salwa Eid Naser of Bahrain was given a provisional suspension for whereabouts failure

The 2019 400m world champion, Salwa Eid Naser of Bahrain, has been given a provisional suspension from the Athletics Integrity Unit for a whereabouts failure.

The third-fastest 400m runner of all time became the first Asian woman to win the world championships in her event last fall.

According to World Athletics anti-doping rules, three missed tests or filing failures within a 12-month period constitute a whereabouts violation. Out-of-competition testing (test that don’t take place at a race) work on a “three strikes” model – a third missed test in a 12-month period is treated like a positive test, and a competition ban of two years is standard.

Last year, American sprinter Christian Coleman missed three out-of-competition drug tests in 12 months, which meant he was facing a two-year ban.

After several weeks of investigation and the discovery of a legal loophole, the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency dropped its case against Coleman, who was then allowed to compete at the world championships.

(06/05/2020) ⚡AMP
by Madeleine Kelly
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After cancelling the South African ultra, Comrades Marathon virtual event signups surpass 13,000 runners

One of the world’s most famous and coveted ultramarathons, the Comrades Marathon in South Africa, was cancelled due to COVID-19 in May. The race was set for June 14, and although no one will be physically running the course between the South African cities of Pietermaritzburg and Durban on that day, organizers have scheduled a virtual event called Race the Comrades Legends for the same date.

The event is open to anyone worldwide, and with just over a week to go before race day, over 13,000 people have registered to run.

In a normal year, the Comrades Marathon is 87K or 90K (the course changes directions each year, hence the two distances). Runners looking to participate in the virtual event will have the option to complete a 90K run in classic Comrades style, but there are also 5K, 10K, 21K and 45K options for anyone who isn’t looking to tackle an ultramarathon.

The event is free to anyone who was already registered for the 2020 Comrades Marathon, and it’s just $25 for everyone else. In addition to the race fee, runners have the option of donating to six local South African charities.

All participants will have to record their runs and upload them to the Comrades site, where results will be compiled and ranked. Runners can upload their runs using whatever tracking apps or GPS programs they prefer.

After all the results are in, runners will be able to see where they sit among the rest of the participants, and according to the virtual race press release, they will also be able to see how they rank against Comrades Marathon legends from past events.

All finishers will receive a virtual medal and finishing certificate immediately after completing their race, and in the weeks after the event, they will receive a physical medal as well.

(06/05/2020) ⚡AMP
by Ben Snider-McGrath
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Comrades Marathon

Comrades Marathon

2020 race has been officially cancelled. Arguably the greatest ultra marathon in the world where athletes come from all over the world to combine muscle and mental strength to conquer the approx 90kilometers between the cities of Pietermaritzburg and Durban, the event owes its beginnings to the vision of one man, World War I veteran Vic Clapham. A soldier, a...

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When it comes to running, experts suggest avoiding static stretching

Stretching was once the cure-all for running injuries. Practitioners would ask injured runners if they were stretching enough, and if the answer was no they would offer more stretches. However, research is now suggesting that certain kinds of stretching aren’t great for runners, and may even be harmful for those who are prone to injury.

According to a literature review of several studies, there’s actually a correlation between lower levels of flexibility and better running economy, which refers to the amount of energy expended to maintain a particular speed. A study on untrained runners found that participants with the lowest flexibility happened to have the most naturally economic running styles. Researchers believe that this was a result of low range of motion, leading to better stabilization when the foot hits the ground. Basically, excessive range of motion means more energy is needed to stabilize muscles, and having a lower range of motion reduces that use of energy.

Carla Robbins is the owner of Vital Strength and Physiology in Calgary, Alta. She says she almost never prescribes static stretching to her clients – she’s all about strength work. “If stretching is something you do frequently, it’s technically possible to get more length in the muscle, but I don’t personally recommend it. I feel like there are other things that can check that box, for example, dynamic stretching or strength training. Strength training results in strength (and length), while also preventing injury.”

When to stretch.- If static stretching (holding one position) isn’t recommended for runners, then what should they be doing to warm up? Robbins says ideally runners will integrate dynamic stretching (not holding the stretch, but moving with control in and out of the end ranges of the stretch) into their pre-run routine. A dynamic warmup will increase body temperature, which activates enzymes that are beneficial to running.

When not Stretching.- Robbins says static stretching should be avoided by runners who are trying to prevent (or rehabilitate) an injury. “There isn’t enough evidence to support that stretching prevents injury,” she explains. “Some stiffness is required in the ligaments and muscles to run. For example, if you’re a hyper-mobile person with relaxed ligaments, you might be more prone to injury as your joints are more likely to move with loading. Lack of stiffness isn’t necessarily beneficial.”

Robbins also reminds runners never to stretch through pain. “Listen to your body, it’ll tell you if you’re doing something wrong.”

When runners cramp up, many feel the need to “stretch it out,” but the research is divided on the topic. Muscle cramps can be caused by many factors including dehydration, fatigue and vitamin or mineral deficiencies. Leg cramps can also be a side effect of some prescription medications.

However, the reason for cramping and its exact cure eludes us. Several studies suggest that stretching out a cramp won’t hurt you, but it won’t necessarily help, either. If cramping is an issue for you, Hyland’s Leg Cramp Tablets, an official sponsor of the Boston Marathon, are one way to feel confident on the start line. Hyland’s Leg Cramps Tablets are taken without water, the quick dissolving tablets melt instantly in your mouth for fast-acting natural relief of leg, calf and foot cramps with no known side effects.

When strength training, runners should pay special attention to their quads and hamstrings, along with ankle and hip mobility. These are the areas where the most-common running injuries tend to happen.

(06/05/2020) ⚡AMP
by Madeleine Kelly
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World marathon record holder, Kenya’s Eliud Kipchoge to race in Tottenham's virtual marathon

World marathon record holder, Kenya’s Eliud Kipchoge has welcomed the challenge by English Premier League side, Tottenham Hotspurs’ fans ahead of the virtual 42km run due Saturday and Sunday.

The race dubbed, MA RA TH ON and is free to enter, is a virtual team relay where runners can register either in teams of four or as an individual and be placed in another group of three.

During the relay, each runner will run 10.5km sometime between Saturday and Sunday at a location that suits them, to make up a collective marathon distance.

Cumulative Time.- Logged on a running app, your team’s cumulative time will be placed on a virtual leaderboard to show how you compare with some of the world’s best.

“A football club is a family, players and fans together. On the weekend we will all run as one, good luck to all fans of @SpursOfficial.  Great to have you guys on the start line! #RunAsOne,” Kipchoge tweeted.

Kipchoge is among Hotspurs fans who have been invited to race in the global virtual marathon relay that is organised by Maurten, the club’s official sport fuel supplier.

To add further incentive, each participating team has the chance to be one of 10 teams that will see a running superstar join their squad. These include Kipchoge, Berlin Marathon champion Kenenisa Bekele, World Cross Country and World 10,000m champion Joshua Cheptegei and World half marathon champion Geoffrey Kamworor.

“Every runner has their own pace, their own background and their own motives to why they run. I am very excited to join someone’s team,” said Kipchoge adding they are really looking forward to joining the relay in this wonderful initiative with his teammates.

Also involved is legendary former player and 1991 FA Cup winner David Howells, who was up for the challenge when asked to take part.

Spurs will be well represented across the event, with members of Supporters’ Clubs from across England, the Netherlands, South Africa, the United States and Canada all pounding the pavements and donning their club colors.

“Like football, running and mass participation events have come to a grinding halt over the last few months,” Howells, the popular former midfielder said. “This is a great initiative that still carries team spirit, sets a target and encourages exercise, which is so important for physical and mental health right now.”

Howells said he is looking forward to the challenge, pulling on that Spurs kit again and representing the club with other fans around the world.

(06/05/2020) ⚡AMP
by Ayumba Ayodi
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The 2020 Rock 'n' Roll Las Vegas Marathon has been postponed due to the pandemic

 The 2020 Rock 'n' Roll Las Vegas Marathon has been postponed, organizers announced Thursday.

"To best meet the needs of our participants, the Las Vegas community and local authorities, the 2020 Rock 'n' Roll Las Vegas Marathon & 1/2 Marathon cannot take place as originally scheduled for November 14-15, 2020," organizers said in a post on social media.

Officials said they are "working diligently with our various host city partners and stakeholders on all potential options."

Rock 'n' Roll Marathon said that all further event updates will be communicated as soon as possible.

(06/05/2020) ⚡AMP
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Rock 'n' Roll Las Vegas

Rock 'n' Roll Las Vegas

Run the Strip at night in Vegas. The marathon and half marathon courses are as flat and festive as they come – perfect for runners and walkers of all ability levels. (2019) Tommy Puzey says winning the Rock ’n’ Roll Las Vegas Marathon “feels exactly like a panic attack to me.” “Bright lights and loud noises,” he said, jokingly, after...

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World Athletics president Sebastian Coe, announced a new pathway to Tokyo Olympics

The qualifying period for track and field events for the Tokyo 2021 Olympic Games will end on June 29, next year just 23 days before the start of the world’s biggest sporting bonanza.

However, World Athletics - that unveiled its four-year strategic plan and Olympic qualifying process- disclosed marathon and 50km race walk entry period will elapse on May 31, 2021.

Tokyo Olympic Games were postponed from July 24 to August this year to July 23 to August 8, 2021 owing to Covid-19 pandemic.

With the reopening of its headquarters this week, World Athletics indicated in a statement that it had the opportunity to discuss with its 214 member federations its new strategic plan to drive growth.

The statement explained that the virtual discussion also centred on latest medical advice on the coronavirus pandemic, particularly as it impacts on athletes returning to training and competition, and the updated qualifying process for Tokyo Olympics Summer Games.

Give Direction.- The members also talked about the direction athletics will take over the next four years and the short-term challenges and opportunities the sport has as the world begins to emerge from lockdown.

World Athletics president Sebastian Coe, who chaired the meetings, said it was important to communicate regularly with the member federations in this unprecedented situation and to give direction for the future.

"Our head office may have been closed for 11 weeks but we have not been idle," Coe said. “We have used that time to continue to develop our strategy to grow athletics.”

In marathon and 50km race walk, the qualifying period that covers 21 months started on January 1, 2019 and ended April 5, 2020. The period resumes December 1, 2020 to May 31, 2021.

Track And Field.- The period for track events featuring 10,000m, 20km race walk, combined events and relay started January 1, 2019 ending on April 5, 2020. The period resumes on December 1, 2020 to June 29, 2021.

All other track and field events period started on May 1, 2019 ending April 5, 2020 before resuming December 1 this year to elapse on June 29, 2021.

However, World Athletics noted that all the top 10 finishers in the men’s marathon and in the women’s marathon at the 2019 Doha World Athletics Championships have qualified automatically for the Tokyo Summer Games.

Also to gain automatic qualification in marathon are top five finishers at the World Athletics gold label marathons and the top 10 finishers at the Marathon Major Series (Tokyo, Boston, London, Berlin, Chicago and New York) held during the qualification period from January 1, 2019 to April 5, 2020.

The top 10 finishers at the platinum label marathons and the winners of the gold label marathons held during the period from December 1, 2020 to May 31, 2021 will also gain direct entry to the Games.

The top eight nations at the 2019 Doha World Championships gain direct entry to the Tokyo Games alongside those that that will finish in top eight at Silesia 2021 World Athletics Relays.World Athletics will also consider world ranking in all the events across the qualifying periods.

(06/04/2020) ⚡AMP
by Ayumba Ayodi
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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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Tokyo 2020 president Yoshiro Mori has said the Olympics would have to be cancelled if the coronavirus pandemic isn't brought under control by next year

Tokyo 2020 officials are looking at ways to scale back next year's postponed Olympics, the city's governor said Thursday, amid reports the opening ceremony could be streamlined and spectator numbers cut.

Yuriko Koike told reporters that organizers were weighing up what could be "rationalized and simplified" as costs spiral for holding the first postponed Games in history.

The International Olympic Committee announced in March the Games would be delayed due to the coronavirus pandemic that has killed hundreds of thousands and brought international travel to a virtual halt.

The Games are now due to open on July 23, 2021, but organizers face the unprecedented headache of rearranging the event, which requires a costly rejigging of everything from venues to transport.

Local media said streamlining plans could involve cutting the number of spectators and reducing participation in the opening and closing ceremonies.

The Yomiuri Shimbun daily quoted an unnamed source as saying that everyone including athletes, officials and spectators would be required to take a test for the virus.

"The top priority is to avoid the worst scenario of cancelling the Games," an unnamed government source told the daily.

Tokyo 2020 spokesman Masa Takaya declined to offer further details as a press conference later on Thursday, saying only that discussions were ongoing.

"At this stage we do not have any concrete outcome," he said, adding that discussions about coronavirus countermeasures would be held "from this autumn onwards."

"Concerning the spread of the novel coronavirus, particularly the situation next summer and how the world will look like is something very ambiguous," he added.

IOC chief Thomas Bach said last month that 2021 was the "last option" for holding the Tokyo Games, stressing that postponement cannot go on forever.

He declined to say whether a vaccine was a prerequisite for going ahead with the Olympics, but was lukewarm on the idea of holding them behind closed doors.

Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe has said it would be "difficult" to hold the postponed Tokyo Olympics if the coronavirus pandemic is not contained.

And Tokyo 2020 president Yoshiro Mori has said the Olympics would have to be cancelled if the coronavirus pandemic isn't brought under control by next year.

(06/04/2020) ⚡AMP
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Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games

Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games

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

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The 2020 Belfast marathon has been cancelled for the first time in the event's 38-year history

The 2020 Belfast marathon, which had been rescheduled for September, has been cancelled for the first time in the event's 38-year history.

The event, which began in 1981, was postponed from its regular May slot due to the sporting lockdown following the Covid-19 pandemic.

"Due to the unprecedented situation with the global pandemic of Covid-19, our fundamental priority must be your health and that of others; therefore at this time we do not believe we can stage our event safely or to the standard which you frequently rely on," read a statement on the official website.

"As organizers, we understand that this news will come as a disappointment for many, even though some of you may have been expecting it.  Consequently, this has been a very difficult decision to make.

In a bid to sustain our cherished Belfast City Marathon, organisers are deferring all entries to the 2021 event, scheduled for Sunday May, 2).

"Belfast City Marathon Ltd are also happy to consider deferral of entries to the 2022 and 2023 marathons. Please contact the Event Manager directly about this," concluded the statement."

(06/04/2020) ⚡AMP
by Michael McMullan
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Belfast City Marathon

Belfast City Marathon

2020 race has been moved from May 3 to September 20. Over 17,500 runners are expected to hit the streets of North, South, East and West of the City. The 2020 Marathon has been moved from May 3 to September 20. The Half Marathon to Feb 28, 2021. The event has grown with the inclusion of new sponsors which now...

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The Cardiff Half Marathon scheduled for October 4 has been postponed until 2021 due to the coronavirus

Organizer Run 4 Wales says holding it in just four months' time "really isn't feasible" and the event will instead take place on 28 March next year.

Since its foundation in 2003, the event has become the UK's third biggest race after the London Marathon and the Great North Run.

Last year 27,500 runners and 100,000 spectators attended the race.

The 2019 Cardiff Half Marathon saw men's winner Leonard Langat from Kenya finish the 13.1 mile course in a new record time of 59 minutes 29 seconds.

"There's still uncertainty about what the autumn looks like," Run 4 Wales chief executive Matt Newman told BBC Sport Wales.

"The prognosis is not very good at the moment and it looks like [mass] events are going to be one of the last things to come back when the world starts to settle down.

"Whilst we could have left this for 12 months and come back in the autumn of 2021, we wanted to give participants an option to come in March which we feel is long enough away for the world to start to come back to some sort of normality."

The Cardiff Half had been due to take place on the same day as the rearranged London Marathon. As it stands that event is still due to go ahead.

The Newport Wales Marathon - already postponed from April to October - has been pushed back again to a new date of 18 April 2021.

Newman is hopeful that postponing the Cardiff Half will allow organisers to hold an event "virtually as normal" next spring, but admits Run 4 Wales is preparing for some restrictions to still be in place.

"We're getting lots of information about how the running community across Europe is looking to stage events," he said.

"There's a lot of creativity going on about different waves, different start times, putting in place all sorts of safe practices.

"But right now it's a little bit early to explain all the options, as we're still hopeful that by the spring of 2021 some of the restrictions we have at the moment are relaxed."

The Cardiff Half Marathon typically sees more than £4m raised for charities and the hope is that only delaying the event will mean these good causes will not miss out on vital fundraising.

Next year will see two half marathons take place in the Welsh capital, with the autumn event still scheduled for 3 October 2021.

(06/04/2020) ⚡AMP
by Tom Brown
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Cardiff Half Marathon

Cardiff Half Marathon

The Cardiff University/Cardiff Half Marathon has grown into one of the largest road races in the United Kingdom. The first event took place back in 2003. The event is not only the UK’s second largest half marathon, it is Wales’ largest road race and Wales’ largest multi-charity fund raising event. The race is sponsored by Cardiff University and supported by...

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Big Sur Marathon and Half have become another victim of COVID-19

Six weeks after postponing race weekend, Big Sur International Marathon organizers canceled this year’s marathon and all related events Wednesday because of the fluid developments of the coronavirus pandemic.

The marathon, which in early March was still on schedule for April 26, was rescheduled in April for Nov. 15. The Monterey Bay Half Marathon, originally scheduled Nov. 15 on its traditional course in Monterey and Pacific Grove for the same day, was moved to Nov. 14.

Now, all of the events, with one exception, will return next year, likely including auxiliary races canceled when the marathon was originally postponed. The Monterey Bay Half Marathon will be held as a virtual event Nov. 14.

Registration for the virtual Monterey Bay Half Marathon will open this summer with details pending.

“The (race) board made the decision based on a variety of factors, including the phased state reopening plan,” said Doug Thurston, executive director and race director. “It’s a concern for the safety of participants, volunteers and the community, and access to needed public safety and medical resources including volunteers and PPE (personal protection equipment).”

Among the country’s most popular marathons, the 35th annual race was expected to include its recent year field participant demographics.

According to Thurston, marathon events have about 425 entrants among 9,000 runners from outside of the United States. About 39 percent of the international participants are from Canada with 40 from other countries.

The data was the impetus for organizers to keep the marathon as originally scheduled. As the pandemic severity advanced, the event was postponed.

“Since we last communicated with you on April 13, California adopted a comprehensive reopening plan,” organizers detailed on the marathon’s website. “In this plan, it now appears that mass gathering events like our weekend of races will not be possible until the final reopening phase when a vaccine or other therapeutics are widely available.”

The marathon had never previously been canceled, but poor air quality from the Camp Fire forced the cancellation of the 2018 Monterey Bay Half Marathon.

Thurston said the marathon organization has canceled several other events in the past five years, including the 2016 Salinas Valley Half Marathon and four other races, including three this year.

“Our team conducted a very thorough analysis in order to provide our runners with the greatest restitution possible,” organizers explained on the event’s website. “Races around the country and world have offered various entry restitution programs according to each organization’s unique situation.

“Unfortunately, our organization has had to weather five race cancellations in the last four years due to circumstances beyond our control. Providing a higher refund or deferrals to future races are not viable options if we want to ensure our organization has the capacity to put on races once again in better times.”

To originally reschedule the marathon and its corresponding runs and walks, organizers worked with businesses throughout the Monterey Peninsula to determine if the Monterey Conference Center and host hotels would be able to participate.

“We went right down the line,” said Thurston. “It obviously took some time particularly with people out of work or sheltering employees or just not available. But we were able to put in in place.”

Local businesses will now be without marathon-related revenues.

The Big Sur Marathon Foundation, a non-profit organization, typically provides nearly $400,000 in annual grants to more than 100 other Monterey County-based nonprofit organizations.

This year, organizers reported that with the loss of more than $2 million in entry fees and other income sources due to event cancellations, it will be unable to provide support to the organizations.

Race organizers also announced all of the 2020 Big Sur Marathon, Relay, 21-Miler, 11-Miler, 12K, and 5K are eligible to receive a 60 percent refund of their entry fee or opt to donate their entry fee to our nonprofit organization.

WeatherTech Laguna Seca Raceway has also amended its yearly calendar several times because of the coronavirus. Its current 2020 calendar is scheduled to begin with the Monterey Pre-Reunion, Aug. 8-9.

“We are assessing the feasibility of being able to hold the Monterey Motorsports Reunion this August,” said Barry Toepke, Director of Marketing and Communications. “We are in close touch with many of our participants who have been accepted to gauge how they feel coming to Monterey.

“Our highest priority is for the safety and well-being of the participants, their crews and families, as well as guests and our community, and have strict protocols ready to be enacted. A final decision will be made very shortly after objectively assessing the landscape with County of Monterey officials.”

The Sea Otter Classic, also held at Laguna Seca Raceway and surrounding areas, was postponed from its usual April dates to a four-day event schedule and expo still scheduled beginning Sept. 30

(06/03/2020) ⚡AMP
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Big Sur Marathon

Big Sur Marathon

2020 was postponed and moved from April to November 15th. This is a confirmed date. The Big Sur Marathon follows the most beautiful coastline in the world and, for runners, one of the most challenging. The athletes who participate may draw inspiration from the spectacular views, but it takes major discipline to conquer the hills of Highway One on the...

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The Cheruiyot´s team targets sub-4:50 time against Ingebrigtsens´ team

Team Cheruiyot, led by World 1,500 metres champion Timothy Cheruiyot, is targeting a winning time of sub-four minutes and 50 seconds in the virtual Maurie Plant Memorial Race on June 11.

Dubbed ‘Impossible Games’, the Maurie Plant Memorial Race will see Team Cheruiyot, made up of Cheruiyot, 2017 World 1,500m champion Elijah Manang’oi, 800m runner Edwin Meli, 800m runner Timothy Sein and 1,500m athlete Vincent Keter take on Team Ingebrigtsen made of world-famous Ingebrigtsen brothers Jakob, Henrik and Filip, and two other athletes over 2,000m.

Team Cheruiyot will run at Nyayo National Stadium in Nairobi, while Team Ingebrigtsen and two other yet-to-be-named athletes, will run at Bislett Stadium in Norway.

And Cheruiyot has pointed out that it has been though adjusting to 2,000m race in training, saying that with the 2,000m race that stretches over five laps requires a good strategy, and theirs is to spend between 56 and 57 seconds in covering the first three laps.

“We want to do the last lap in 53 seconds, and it will be great to finish under for four minutes and 50 seconds,” Cheruiyot, the 2018 and 2019 Diamond League champion, said. “In fact, we are aiming at one of us finishing the race in 4:44.”

The 24-year-old Cheruiyot, who has competed in more than five distances (800m, 1,500m, One Mile, 5,000m and distance medley relay), said they have had to change their training programme by introducing more lapping sessions to cover an additional 400m to 500m.

“We have also added more of the long runs as we train how to spread our energies across the distances,” said Cheruiyot, who has tipped Manang’oi and Meli to return good times in the race.

“Meli has been in camp while Manang’oi has had at least a month of training. I just started two weeks ago but all has been well for me, having hit the track for the first time in a while,” said Cheruiyot.

Cheruiyot said their Norwegian opponents will have a slight advantage over his team owing to difference in altitude and more so because they have been in training longer.

Oslo lies at an altitude of 23 metres while Nairobi is 1,795 metres above sea level.

“They will have the advantage of competing at a lower altitude, practically at sea level while we shall be higher up. Nevertheless, we shall take them head-on,” said Cheruiyot.

Cheruiyot, who has personal best of 1:43.11 in 800m, 3:28.41 in 1,500m and 3:49.64 in One Mile, said the Maurie Plant Memorial is part of his preparations for the Diamond League and World Athletics Continental Tour starting in August.

“You realise we shall have few races this season owing to the Covid-19 pandemic but our main focus is now on next year’s Tokyo Olympic Games,” said Cheruiyot, who is targeting on open his Diamond League season with his 1,500m title defence in Monaco on August 14.

The 2020 Diamond League that has been shortened, will end in October and has 11 events.

Several events being cancelled for instance Rabat, London and Zurich as organisers continue to adapt the season in the face of the coronavirus crisis.

(06/03/2020) ⚡AMP
by Ayumba Ayodi
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The International Olympic Committee (IOC) respects athletes' rights to express their feelings and opinions over the death of George Floyd

A number of athletes have voiced their support for the protest over the death of Floyd, an African American who died in police custody last week, and the Black Lives Matter movement against racial discrimination.

"The IOC fully respects that many athletes have made statements on social media and in the media. This is their individual right, and this is a right that we fully support," an IOC spokesperson said via e-mail.

Sports organizations including the U.S. Olympic and Paralympic Committee have also expressed solidarity "with all who are committed to be forces for good." German Olympic Sports Confederation president Alfons Hoermann supported athletes to "raise their voices over such a completely unacceptable development," in an interview public broadcasters ZDF.

"For its part, the IOC will continue to be guided for all Olympic-related matters by the Fundamental Principles of the Olympic Charter, in particular Principle 6, which states: 'The enjoyment of the rights and freedoms set forth in this Olympic Charter shall be secured without discrimination of any kind, such as race, colour, sex, sexual orientation, language, religion, political or other opinion, national or social origin, property, birth or other status.'

"The IOC will continue its mission to bring the entire world together through sport, whilst respecting the scope of its mandate," the IOC spokesperson added.

The death of Floyd has sparkled international outrage as protests have spread beyond U.S. cities.

(06/03/2020) ⚡AMP
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The Canadian Olympic committee and Own the Podium are looking to help fund a safe return to training for the country's elite athletes

The Canadian Olympic and Paralympic committees (COC and CPC) and Own the Podium (OTP) have announced a $5 million investment for a phased return to high-performance sport. In a conference call on Monday, representatives from each of these organizations discussed this investment, where the money might be applied and their hopes for elite Canadian athletes and Olympic hopefuls as they slowly work back toward their normal training plans and routines.

David Shoemaker, CEO of the COC, said, “Just as public health was our North Star when Canadian athletes decided to stop training back in March, public health will remain our North Star as we begin a phased-in approach to return to sport.” The COC, CPC and individual National Sport Organizations (NSOs) will “listen closely to medical experts” as athletes, coaches and teams resume training across the country, Shoemaker said.

“We want to make sure that our athletes are returning to training in a way that’s not just safe for them, but so it’s safe for their families and safe for their communities.”

CEO of OTP Anne Merklinger said athletes’ return to sport “will vary greatly” depending on whether they compete in indoor or outdoor sports. “There’s a vast difference in the protocols that need to be followed in indoor sports, outdoor sports, individual sports and team sports,” she said.

The COC, CPC and OTP representatives on the conference call didn’t say where the $5 million would be allocated. There are almost 60 Olympic and Paralympic sports, and Shoemaker said a “Return to Sport Task Force” will decide which NSOs will receive money and how much they will each get.

“The Return to Sport Task Force recognizes that the nearly 60 sports we compete in in Canada have very different needs,” Shoemaker said. “We’re going to take full guidance from the medical experts and the sport experts to find out how to best optimize the $5 million investment.”

Shoemaker went on to say the money—which has been funded from other unspecified COC and CPC programs—will be prioritized and focused on the organizations’ “greatest need,” which he said is “podium potential.”

It’s unfortunate that NSOs with medal hopefuls may be the sports that receive the bulk or all of the $5 million investment, but it makes sense. With Canadians competing in nearly 60 sports across the Olympics and Paralympics, $5 million isn’t that much money. This is why the COC will be dedicating this investment to a select few, like those medal contenders, rather than spreading it out across dozens of sports for thousands of athletes. If this is the route the Return to Sport Task Force takes, that’s good news for track athletes like Andre De Grasse, Gabriela DeBues-Stafford and Mohammed Ahmed, all of whom are serious threats for big performances at next year’s Tokyo Olympics.

(06/03/2020) ⚡AMP
by Ben Snider-McGrath
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400m runner, Graeme Thompson was given a two-year suspension for anti-doping violation

Graeme Thompson, a member of the Speed River Track and Field Club and former Guelph Gryphon, was given a two-year suspension on Tuesday for presence of clenbuterol, a prohibited anabolic agent, and tamoxifen, a prohibited hormone and metabolic modulator in a July 27, 2019 test.

Thompson’s positive sample would have been given at the 2019 national championships in Montreal, where he finished fourth in the 400m final. He would go on to join Team Canada at the 2019 World Championships as an alternate on the 4 x 400m relay team. He continued to race until in January 2020, but hasn’t recorded any results since.

Thompson was a member of the 2018-2019 Gryphons team that won the U Sports men’s national title. He was ranked third nationally in the 400m at the end of the 2019 season.

Clenbuterol is often used to treat asthma and is found in certain inhalers. Tamoxifen, on the other hand, is most commonly used to treat breast cancer as an estrogen blocker. While anti-estrogens don’t really enhance performance, they’re banned by WADA (World Anti-Doping Agency) because the drug can be used to alleviate symptoms of other performance enhancing drugs, like testosterone.

The standard sanction for the presence of the mentioned substances is a four-year ban. However, according to the CCES, based on information provided by the athlete, the violation was deemed unintentional and therefore a two-year sanction was proposed.

Thompson waived his right to a hearing and accepted the sanction, which terminates on October 9, 2021.

(06/03/2020) ⚡AMP
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The 2020 Marine Corps Marathon Extends Virtual Option to Runners

The 2020 Marine Corps Marathon (MCM) Weekend is proceeding as planned for October while implementing safety measures and following the guidance of government and public health officials. In addition to the planned live version, the MCM10K scheduled for October 25, 2020 will now be offered as a virtual event.

“The safety of our runners and supporters remains our main concern as we plan for the return of live events,” said Rick Nealis, director of the Marine Corps Marathon Organization (MCMO). “During this unprecedented and difficult time, it is important that we offer various options to our running community to ease their minds and provide the most flexibility in accomplishing their running goals.

The spirit of the United States Marine Corps has no boundaries and will be felt wherever participants choose to run.”

Registration for the virtual MCM10K opens to the public at noon Eastern on Wednesday, June 3 at www.marinemarathon.com and costs $33 per entry. There are limited entries available to anyone interested in running the popular 6.2-mile event, which must be run between October 1-25. All participants who complete the virtual event will receive a bib, technical shirt, digital finisher certificate and an impressive finisher medal.

On a space availability basis, runners who register for the virtual MCM10K may seek to transfer to the live MCM10K at a later date. Runners should consider the virtual event as a stand-alone option. Registration in the virtual doesn’t imply guaranteed access to a live MCM10K.  

The MCMO will continue to adhere to policies put forth by the federal, state and local governments and provide ongoing updates as necessary. Please stay tuned to the MCM website and social media channels for information on the event schedule as determinations are made for the live MCM Weekend in October.

(06/03/2020) ⚡AMP
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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 Bolder Boulder was first postponed but now it has been cancelled

The BOLDERBoulder 10K race has been canceled for 2020, after organizers initially postponed the event to Labor Day.

2020 will be the first year in the event's 41-year history without a race. Organizers said they consulted with their partners at the University of Colorado Boulder and the city of Boulder and determined the race needed to be canceled out of an abundance of caution. The event is traditionally held on Memorial Day.

"It is not our preference, but it is essential," organizers tweeted.

We look forward to being back with you, in person, Memorial Day 2021 (365 days from today) for the BOLDEST BOLDERBoulder ever!

“This is the most difficult decision we’ve ever had to make, but the health and safety of our participants and our community are paramount," Race Director Cliff Bosley said in a statement.

Runners who registered for the race will be guaranteed a spot in the 2021 Memorial Day event, at no extra cost.

The event began in 1979 and has grown to become one of the largest races in the country, drawing more than 50,000 participants.

(06/02/2020) ⚡AMP
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BOLDER BOULDER

BOLDER BOULDER

In 1979 we dreamt of attracting a few hundred of our friends to race though the streets of Boulder, Colorado to celebrate Memorial Day with our families. Fast forward almost 40 years and the Bolder BOULDER has grown to become one of the largest and most highly acclaimed 10K’s in the world. Almost 1.2 million runners, joggers, walkers and spectators...

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The 2020 Canada Army Run set to go virtually

The 2020 version of the Canada Army Run used to be set for September 20, however race organizers have formally determined to cancel this 12 months’s match and exchange it with a virtual working collection. The Army Run is likely one of the greatest occasions at the Canadian working calendar, with a couple of races introduced to individuals.

In 2019, shut to 20,000 other folks participated in the other Canada Army Run occasions, and even if there received’t be a bodily direction for athletes to run this 12 months, race officers stated in a press free up that they’re assured that their virtual selection will nonetheless be a “memorable and unique experience.”

There are a number of races featured at the yearly Canada Army Run. Participants can select to race a 5K, a 10Ok or a half-marathon. There also are the Commander’s and Victory demanding situations, which mix other occasions.

Runners who input the Commander’s Challenge run the 5K and half-marathon, and the ones registered for the Victory Challenge run the 5K and 10Ok. All races are held at the similar day, so those demanding situations make for a hectic and tiring morning of working. There may be a selected “Ill, Injured and Disabled” athlete class for every of the races.

In the click free up saying the exchange to a virtual collection, Canada Army Run organizers stated they have got been “meticulously preparing for the possibility of a virtual transition” since March, and they have got “built something exceptional.”

They haven’t begun to go into element as to what the virtual collection will appear to be or how it is going to paintings, however officers stated it looks as if “one of the most unique solutions” observed in the working business to this point all over the COVID-19 pandemic. As additional information turns into to be had and the virtual races come into shape, we can ensure to stay registrants and runners in racing up to date.

(06/02/2020) ⚡AMP
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Canada Army Run

Canada Army Run

From the cannon used as a “starter’s pistol” to the “dog-tag” medals soldiers place around all participants necks at the finish line, this unique event is “military” from start to finish. More than anything, though, Canada Army Run, is about Canadians and the Canadian Armed Forces – Air Force, Army, and Navy – joining together in the spirit of camaraderie...

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Two-time New York Marathon winner Jelena Prokopcuka retires from professional competition

Two-time New York Marathon winner Jelena Prokopcuka has admitted in an interview with the monthly sports magazine Sporta Avize that she has most likely run her final professional competition, but says that she plans to continue running while spending more time with her family.

Prokopcuka, the titled long-distance runner, has now put active sports aside because he has devoted herself to family life, which was left in the background during her career. She says that sports are not being completely forgotten, but that her daily schedule has already changed considerably.

"I am no longer a professional athlete, but a high level enthusiast. My goals are not as big as they used to be in my life - I had no more thoughts about the Olympics or other top marathons this year," Prokopcuka explained. "I know I need to move, I can't stop running for health reasons, but I don't have a strict regime, a strict training plan."

Prokopcuka did not rule out that she may run a marathon in the future, but there are no such plans in the near future. Only in the upcoming Riga Marathon in the autumn, where she will run not as a professional but as an enthusiast.

The experienced Prokopcuka did not hide that he still loves running, and that she wants to share her knowledge in the future.

Prokopcuka holds the Latvian record in the 3,000 meters, 6,000 meters, 10,000 meters, half-marathon and marathon distances.

She won the NY Marathon in 2005 and 2006, and finished in third in 2007 and 2013. She also finished in third place at the 2006 and 2007 Boston Marathon, and the 2003 Chicago Marathon.

She also triumphed at the Osaka Marathon in 2005.

Prokopcuka has competed at four Olympic games during her career - in 1996, 2000, 2004 and 2016.

She was named Latvia's Athlete of the Year in 2005, 2006 and 2007.

(06/02/2020) ⚡AMP
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TCS  New York City Marathon

TCS New York City Marathon

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

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David Rudisha says that he is firmly on road to recovery

David Rudisha says he’s happy with Thursday’s surgery on his fractured ankle.

The two-time Olympic 800 meters champion was on Saturday discharged from St Luke’s Hospital in Eldoret, Uasin Gishu County, after the successful surgery.

Rudisha, who has been training in Iten, Eldoret and Kilgoris in Narok County, was preparing for his comeback ahead of the Olympics Games in Tokyo.

The Games were postponed to next year due to the coronavirus pandemic.

The champion picked an injury during a walk in his compound in Narok County after stepping on uneven ground.

He went on with training which caused further harm on his ankle forcing him to visit the hospital where the fracture was detected and successful surgery done by Dr. Victor Bargoria.

Bargoria said he said Rudisha suffered a “Supination-External Rotation” which he fixed with a 1/3 tubular plate and 3.5 millimeter screws.

Talking to Nation Sport from his hospital bed on Saturday, Rudisha said that he was happy the surgery went on well and that he will be recovering at home after being discharged.

“I’m doing well and will be leaving the hospital today (Saturday). I would just ask Kenyans and my fans to continue praying for me. I’m in good condition and on the path to recovery now,” said Rudisha.

Rudisha will recover from home and after six weeks he will be able to get into rehabilitation when the tissues will have healed. “In six weeks he should start the rehabilitation process and we shall be there with my team to make sure it goes on well because he also needs to do his normal life activities,” said the doctor, who also handles Kenya’s Olympic team.

(06/02/2020) ⚡AMP
by Bernard Rotich
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Local Running Community Comes Together to Celebrate Global Running Day Virtually

On behalf of all local run clubs, J&A Racing invites the running community and the Coastal Virginia Community to come together to celebrate Global Running Day. In the running community, Wednesday, June 3rd is recognized as Global Running Day - a worldwide celebration of running designed to inspire everyone to be active. Everyone is invited and encouraged to get moving and to experience the mental and physical benefits of movement and community.

This year’s event has gone virtual making it more accessible than ever, and it is free and open to the public. Whether you run one mile or 100, Global Running Day is for everyone. All you have to do is put on a pair of running shoes and get moving! Every registered participant will have access to a virtual race bib, virtual race results, Facebook event, and a chance to win a Global Running Day prize pack. 

Running events worldwide have been impacted by the state-by-state mandates prohibiting large gatherings during the COVID-19 pandemic, but the spirit of the community is stronger than ever. With races being cancelled and postponed, virtual events has become the platform for virtual gatherings. 

“Nothing feels normal right now, but Global Running Day is a chance for our community to do what it does best. When we come together and support something bigger than ourselves, we become our best,” said Ryan Conrad, Director of Partnership. 

This year’s virtual event is raising money for Feeding America® COVID-19 Response Fund. Feeding America® is the largest hunger-relief organization in the United States. Through a network of 200 food banks and 60,000 food pantries and meal programs, they provide meals to more than 40 million people each year. 

With our nation in the grips of COVID-19, Feeding America are meeting increased needs of today while preparing for continued challenges in the weeks and months to come. Anyone who makes a donation during registration will be entered to win a Global Running Day Prize Pack valued at $1200.

(06/02/2020) ⚡AMP
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Global Running Day

Global Running Day

What is Global Running Day? Global Running Day is a worldwide celebration of running that encourages everyone to get moving. It doesn’t matter how fast you run or how far you go—what’s important is that you take part, and how you do it is up to you. Run a lap around your block, take your dog for a long walk,...

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Winny Kosgey targets to run the Ottawa Marathon’s 10k virtual run on June 2

On Sunday, a SpaceX Crew Dragon capsule docked with the International Space Station, the first time a crewed US spacecraft has performed the feat in nearly a decade.

The "Soft capture," the moment when the spacecraft makes first contact and starts latching with the target vehicle, occurred at 10:16 am Eastern Time (5.16pm Kenyan time).

Carrying two NASA astronauts, Bob Behnkhen and Doug Hurley, the mission marked a huge milestone in space travel.

Back on earth, and right here in the North Rift, man will celebrate another major milestone, this time in sport, not space travel.

Under normal circumstances, Winny Kosgey, an upcoming distance runner, would have been in Ottawa, Canada, for a 10-kilometre run.

But with the coronavirus having disrupted global sports programmes and airline travel, Kosgey was among scores of sportspeople who couldn’t travel to their destinations of competition.

However, she will still run the Ottawa 10km race, and has the possibility of bagging prize money.

Thanks to technology, organisers of the race have elected to have it run, virtually.

With virtual competitions slowly becoming the enforced vogue, Kosgey will most certainly break new ground for Kenyan sport when she competes on Tuesday.

Virtual running seems to be the way forward now for athletes as they wait for the virus to be contained.

Last weekend’s cancellation of the Boston Marathon, the first time it its 124-year history, drove further affinity to virtual running.

Her quick thinking directed her to the internet where she managed to register for the reorganised race, and she has been preparing for the last few weeks.

The virtual race requires an athlete to compete alone at his or her own pace, adhering to social distancing regulations provided by the government and Ministry of Health.

She said she has been promoting social distancing in sport, and, at the same time, competing to raise money for charity for a children’s hospital in Canada.

She will be running alone, with her husband a freelancer journalist Justin Lagat, and her daughter, Berylynn Jerotich, monitoring her progress from a trailing car.

“The race is to promote social distancing and it’s only my family who will be able to see me running.

“I don’t expect anybody to cheer me while running,” said Kosgey, who names world marathon record holder Brigid Kosgei as her mentor.

(06/01/2020) ⚡AMP
by Bernard Rotich
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Ottawa 10K

Ottawa 10K

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

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People are going to be running the Boston Marathon remotely Due to COVID-19, for the very first time ever

On May 28, the Boston Athletic Association (BAA) announced that, for the first time in its 124 years of existence, the 2020 Boston Marathon is canceled.

The event was originally scheduled for April 20, then rescheduled to September due to the COVID-19 pandemic. "While our goal and our hope is to make progress in containing the virus and recovering our economy, this kind of event would not be responsible or realistic on September 14 or any time this year," Boston mayor Marty Walsh announced on Twitter. Instead, a virtual marathon will be hosted over a number of days.

Here's the good news: runners who were originally registered for the 2020 Boston Marathon will be offered a full refund of their entry fee, according to a notice posted on the BAA website. And, they will have the opportunity to participate in the 124th Boston Marathon remotely anytime between Sept. 7 and 14.

In terms of logistics, participants will be required to complete 26.2 miles within six hours, and they will also need to provide proof of timing to the BAA. Information for how to enter the virtual race and how to submit those times is forthcoming - so stay tuned!

More good news: if you had requested a race refund prior to May 28, you are still eligible to participate virtually. In finishing the Boston Marathon remotely, participants will receive an official Boston Marathon program, T-shirt, runner's bib, and medal. Virtual events, including panels, will also be offered throughout the week.

According to the BAA, registration for next year's Boston Marathon (in 2021) will open toward the end of September, and runners cannot use their virtual times toward qualifying. That being said, runners can use their 2020 Boston Marathon qualifying time for the 2021 Boston Marathon, though further information is yet to be released.

(06/01/2020) ⚡AMP
by Samantha Brodsky
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Boston Marathon

Boston Marathon

The 124th Boston Marathon originally scheduled for April 20 was postponed to September 14 and then May 28 it was cancelled for 2020. The next Boston Marathon is scheduled for April 19, 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...

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A 9-year-old boy with cerebral palsy and autism has raised $100,000 for charity after completing a marathon up and down his street using a walker

Tobias Weller completed the final leg of his 26.2-mile marathon in Sheffield, northern England, on Sunday surrounded by socially distanced neighbors and well-wishers.

Cerebral palsy is a group of neurological disorders that affect the ability to move. According to his JustGiving page, Tobias cannot stand or walk unaided, and requires support with most tasks, but, inspired by Captain Tom Moore, a war veteran who raised millions for the UK's National Health Service by walking laps of his garden ahead of his 100th birthday, Tobias set his sights on a marathon.

Tobias had been planning a sponsored 1 kilometer (0.6 mile) walk around a local park last month, but was unable to go ahead with it because of coronavirus lockdown restrictions.

Tobias is cheered on by neighbors as he walks along his street in Sheffield, northern England.

"Then I heard about Captain Tom and I thought why don't I use my walker to try to complete a marathon by walking up and down my street every day," he said in a video ahead of the marathon, admitting it would be a "ginormous challenge."

At the beginning of lockdown, Tobias could walk a maximum of 50 meters (164 feet) a day, but as he grew closer to completing his challenge -- which took him 70 days, according to the PA Media news agency -- he was walking up to 750 meters (half a mile) a day.

"I can't believe I completed a marathon, it's just awesome," he told Sky News.

He said: "Every bit of it has been totally awesome.

"I love it when my neighbors clap and cheer for me. I'm getting stronger and stronger every day. It's such a good feeling."

So far, Tobias has raised over £81,600 ($100,700) -- £50,000 more than his original target of £30,000 for Sheffield Children's Hospital and Paces School, a school that supports children and adults with neurological conditions, including Tobias.

Tobias' mother, Ruth Garbutt, said they were going to continue walking and were aiming to reach 50 kilometers (31 miles), PA Media reported.

"I'm so, so pleased that he's completed his marathon. He's done really well. He's tried so hard all the way through. He's really achieved a massive goal," she said, according to PA.

"I'm bursting with pride for my little boy. He's just magnificent."

(06/01/2020) ⚡AMP
by Amy Woodyatt
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The world’s fastest woman Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce not ready to retire yet

Like wine, Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce gets better, and faster, by the year.

The world’s fastest woman isn’t dismissing the possibility of featuring at the 2022 World Championships in Eugene just yet.

The Jamaican, a mother of one, will be 35 then.

Speaking exclusively with NTV in an interview scheduled to air last night, the nine-time world champion confessed her love for Kenyan athletes. Especially multiple steeplechase world champion, Ezekiel Kemboi, and track queen Vivian Cheruiyot, who has since graduated to the marathon.

Fraser-Pryce would love to end her career “closer home” when Eugene, in the state of Oregon, hosts the global competition in July at a new Hayward Field stadium.

The meet was initially scheduled for next year but was pushed back by a year to give way for the Tokyo Olympic Games that were also postponed by a year owing to the coronavirus pandemic.

“It would be nice to finish (my career) so close to home where my friends who’ve always found it difficult to travel far can visit… no one thought it would be possible for me to come back from a C-section and win a championship at 32 years old, but I did, so you never know,” she told me on NTV Sport.

“I was very disappointed by the Olympics’ postponement. It’s like a timeline for me to achieve these things… I have a family now that needs me to take precautions so it was a bummer but there are lives at stake and that’s most important,” Fraser-Pryce added.

The 2020 Olympics would have possibly capped off a remarkable 10 months for the “pocket rocket”, who stormed the history books in Doha last year when she won the 100 metres final in a season best time of 10.71 seconds, to become the only athlete to scoop four 100m world championship gold medals.

The achievement was overshadowed by the fact that Fraser-Pryce did it as a new mother.

“I didn’t sleep at all the night before my final in Doha,” she confesses. “I was so anxious because my last championship had been three years before that.”

She skipped the London 2017 championships to have a baby.

Fraser-Pryce counts the 2019 win and her maiden 100m gold at the 2008 Beijing Olympics as her most memorable victories.

Her latest win in Qatar saw the introduction of her son Zyon to the world, as the Jamaican proudly ran her victory lap with the two-year-old boy in her arms.

“When I first found out I was pregnant I was so skeptical, but I want to show women that having a baby doesn’t have to end your career,” the sprinter says with conviction.

(06/01/2020) ⚡AMP
by Idah Waringa
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2019 champion is running UTMB anyway

Spanish ultrarunner Pau Capell says he plans on running the 171K UTMB Mont-Blanc route even though the race is cancelled

On May 20, race organizers for the Ultra-Trail du Mont-Blanc announced that the 2020 edition was officially cancelled. The UTMB features seven events (all of which start in Chamonix every August), the most famous being the gruelling 171K ultra that takes runners through the Alps in France, Italy and Switzerland. Runners around the world were of course disappointed when the race was called off, no matter how inevitable that cancellation seemed to be. The men’s champion from 2019, Pau Capell of Spain, isn’t accepting the cancellation, and he has announced that he will be running the route on his own in late August.

Capell made this announcement soon after the UTMB was officially cancelled (just two days later), posting on Twitter and Instagram to say, “I will run UTMB! Alone, without a bib and with my support team.” He also posted that he plans to start the run at 6 p.m. on August 28, four days after the event was set to officially start.

There are many issues that could arise and ruin Capell’s plan, including potential travel restrictions and further lockdowns in his home country of Spain or in France. Both countries were under strict lockdowns for the past two months, and restrictions have only recently been loosened in each country. Many public health officials around the world have forecast a second wave of the coronavirus, so by August, Spain, France and the rest of the world could be back in lockdown, which would stop Capell from going.

There’s also the moral question of whether it’s OK to go and do this race when it’s been cancelled. UTMB organizers called the race off because it was the best way to keep everyone safe, and although Capell running on his own with a small support crew is much different than thousands of runners coming to race the UTMB events, it’s still a questionable decision.

Capell is an experienced ultrarunner, and he will undoubtedly come well prepared with enough supplies and a good crew, but there’s the possibility that people will follow in his footsteps and take on the UTMB solo as well. If this happens, it’s very possible that other runners won’t be as well prepared as Capell, and that could create issues for themselves and other runners around them.

If Capell is able to go through with his solo run, it will be interesting to see how it goes. When he won the race in 2019, he covered the 171K course in 20:19:07. It’s hard to imagine that he could beat that time without the adrenaline shot delivered from a real race with cheering spectators and other competitors, but we’ll just have to wait and see what type of run he can produce if the time comes.

(05/31/2020) ⚡AMP
by Running Magazine
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Like A Starved Lion, Manangoi Back In Action Hungry For Success

With a hairline stress fracture on his heel, Elijah Manangoi missed the trip to Qatar to defend his 1500m world title, a crown that was aptly picked up by training partner Timothy Cheruiyot at the Khalifa International Stadium in Doha.

And now, partly thanks to the break occasioned by the COVID-19 pandemic, Manangoi, nicknamed ‘The Lion’, has had time to fully recover without missing any major competition and is raring to go in search of the elusive Olympic title.

“The Olympic medal is the only one I don’t have,” Manangoi says with his eyes shining in confident determination.

“I feel like this pandemic has given me a chance to recover well. I am now injury free and I have returned to training fully, like I have never been injured before. I was rushing to be back in time for the Doha Diamond League but at least now, the break has given me time to recover well,” stated the Commonwealth Games champion.

“I think I have returned hungrier and I need to continue fighting. I am serious in my training and the competitions I will take,” he added.

Manangoi had hoped to recover well to travel to Doha, but a week to the Championship, pulled out of the race where Cheruiyot went on to clinch the title after a successful season in the Diamond League.

“Last year was too tough for me especially noting I didn’t go to defend my title in Doha. But I was very happy when my ‘brother’ Cheruiyot went and came back with the gold medal,” further added Manangoi.

Manangoi is already into his second week of training and on Tuesday he hit the track for the first time, training with Cheruiyot and two other team-mates from the Rongai Athletics Camp who will be part of the Maurie Plant Memorial Race on June 11.

This will be his first competition of the season, but his campaign will begin proper on August 4 at the Monaco Diamond League.

But even as he prepares for the make-up season, Manangoi has reiterated his focus is on Tokyo Olympics Games that was postponed to 2021, and an assault at the Olympic Gold, having pulled out in the semis due to injury at the 2016 Rio de Janeiro Games.

“This is my first journey towards the Olympics which is my big focus. The Diamond League is not so crucial in terms of winning, but I want to participate to get confidence to build up towards Tokyo,” he stated.

Manangoi has spent a huge chunk of his recovery time especially during the COVID-19 pandemic with family back at his Narok home, while also fanning his farming hobby, tending to his wheat farms.

“I have continued to train even while I am at home, taking morning runs and doing some physio in the house as well. Going back to the track feels great and we have literally hit the ground running,” he further stated.

(05/31/2020) ⚡AMP
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There are many races that will not survive the Pandemic

In this time of coronavirus when so much of normal life has been disrupted and locked down, running has once again been touted as a healthy habit to engage in, not just physically, but emotionally and psychologically, as well. And yet the great irony is that coming together by the hundreds and thousands to run in road races is considered a dangerous catalyst to the spread of the virus. And so as race cancellations increase and the calendar ahead is denuded of our annual mass gatherings, Running USA CEO Rich Harshbarger acknowledged the industry is “suffering tremendously” and that, since it has no league or players association, it is sometimes overlooked. 

While there has always been something of a prideful outsider’s mentality to the sport of running, being overlooked as an industry is an altogether different matter. So in April 2020, over 500 endurance event operators across the country — including Ironman and Running USA — banded together to launch the Endurance Sports Coalition, which sought longer-term funding for event operators. 

“Without specifically targeted help from the federal government,” said the Endurance Sports Coalition, “the endurance sports may not survive the COVID-19 pandemic. Many events with long and proud histories do not have the resources to weather this storm and will not be able to ramp up again next year.”

That’s the sound of strident individuality falling in the face of the existential threat brought about by the Coronavirus.

Long the backbone of the running industry, the individual event summoning thousands of individual runners is now finding that flinty independence has a cutting edge.  It has been the sports’ resolute refusal to aggregate its numbers to form anything beyond the individual race, that now threatens the viability of many long-standing events.

This lack of a wider view was first made apparent when Nike pulled out sponsorship of the Cascade Run-Off in Portland, Oregon, a classic 15K event that hosted the first open prize money road race on the fledgling Association of Road Race Athletes (ARRA) tour in 1981. When Nike pulled out a few years later and local organizers couldn’t find an immediate sponsor replacement, rather than seeing financial support coming from the broader road race community to bridge the gap until a new sponsor could be found, the event just died, taking with it a seminal milestone in the history of the sport. There was no sense that ‘we are all in this together”; it was every event for itself.

True, there have been some examples of multiple-race series over the years, most notably the 154-event Diet Pepsi 10K Series in the late Seventies, early Eighties.  And Dr. Scholl’s staged their Pro Comfort 10K series for a few years in the mid-`80s.  Elite Racing, Inc. founded the Rock ‘n’ Roll-themed series of marathons and half-marathons in 1998 and literally changed the game.  Competitor Group and now Ironman continued to develop the participation aspect of the RnR Series while largely eliminating the pro racing division. On that front, the Abbott World Marathon Majors branded six of the world’s preeminent marathons.  But in recent cycles, there has been a shift in public recognition from tour champions to Six-Star Finishers – due in part to the negative publicity of drug cheaters taking the series titles before having to give them up upon being caught.

But throughout its first four-plus decades, the running industry has primarily developed via an individual event, individual runner orientation. And that orientation was sufficient to grow the events even if it didn’t do the same for the sport at the leading edge of the events.  Yes, the elite sporting element has maintained a presence, but largely it has been managed more than promoted.

There are 44 million runners? 35,000 races? 17.6 million racers?  These are striking numbers reflecting a robust industry (though the number of racers has slowly been eroding for the last half-decade). But when every one of those numbers is constituted as a universe of one, they don’t add up to anything more than an academic data point. And now in the face of Coronavirus, road running’s mass gatherings are seen as Petri dishes of viral concern. But because the industry never successfully formed a league or developed a players association to create a larger force, it finds itself particularly vulnerable, exposing the weakness of the sport’s atomic event sensibility to help bridge a time of crisis. 

Runners were once ridiculed (“It’s spring and the saps are running” was a Boston favorite). Then the sport found broad acceptance through the original Running Boom. Still, I am reminded of those early years when you would go to meetings at City Halls looking for street closing permits and the like. And often race directors would tell city officials, “we will start very early and stay off main roads. Nobody will know we are there.” And I always wondered, is “nobody knows we’re there” a proper goal? Former Houston Marathon director David Hannah had a famous line about that mentality, “A long time ago running made an unconscious decision to be a closely held secret.”

It makes you wonder whether events, athletes, and agents are paying close attention to the current crisis. Have they figured it out yet?  Fish have. Birds have. Wildebeests have. Ants have.  And finally, an endurance events coalition has, too. There are safety and power and insurance in numbers. If this Coronavirus crisis doesn’t set this sport up for some sort of unified effort going forward, you just wonder whatever will?

(05/31/2020) ⚡AMP
by Toni Reavis
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Diamond League Releases Its Revised Racing Calendar for 2020

A limited series of international meets is slated to begin in late August.

This month, the Diamond League announced a provisional 2020 racing calendar featuring 11 meets that will begin in late August and run until October.

Two months before each meet, the host cities’ respective event organizers will announce the format of the meet and any special guidelines (including social distancing regulations) that athletes should be aware of.

As the COVID-19 pandemic conditions continue to linger across the globe, event organizers are having to make tough decisions on whether to cancel races set for late summer and fall, or to carry them out with careful precautions.

For track athletes, most championship meets—including the U.S. Olympic Track Trials, the Tokyo Olympic Games, and the European Track and Field Championships—have been postponed or canceled because of coronavirus concerns. But the Diamond League and World Athletics still hope that there can be an abridged competitive season this year.

On May 12, the Diamond League, which typically hosts a series of meets in the summer that culminates in a final championship, announced a provisional 2020 racing calendar that will begin in late August and run until October. The calendar contains 11 meets that will be hosted in Monaco, England, and Sweden in August; Switzerland, Belgium, France, Italy, and China in September; and the U.S. (Eugene, Oregon), Qatar, and China in October. Unlike in previous years, athletes competing in the meets will not earn Diamond League points, and there will be no final championship.

“Given the current discrepancies in training and travel opportunities, it would be impossible to ensure a level playing field and a fair qualification system during 2020,” the Diamond League said in the press release.

Instead of a uniform series of events, the 2020 Diamond League meets will likely vary greatly from each other. The press release explained that depending on the host city, some meets might feature one-off exhibition events (meaning just one or a select few events will take place), while others will have a more traditional schedule, albeit with special coronavirus precautions.

Two months before each meet, the host cities’ respective event organizers will announce the format of the meet and any special guidelines that athletes should be aware of. The hope is that the two-month lead time will give athletes time to mentally prepare for the meet, and allow organizers to make formatting adjustments as needed, based on their respective government restrictions.

“Some meeting organizers might choose to stage their events in innovative, alternative formats, and/or under social distancing regulations,” the Diamond League said in the press release.

Of course, the main issue with restarting meets while the pandemic is still ongoing is that gathering athletes and fans together in close proximity increases the risk of virus transmission. To help stymy the spread without cancelling events, other international sports—including baseball in South Korea and soccer in Germany—have prohibited spectators in the stands and enforced strict hygiene measures and testing protocols among players and staff members.

It’s possible that track meets might similarly restrict spectator capacity or ban fans altogether, in order to comply with crowd size restrictions. However, this measure will be a last resort, according to World Athletics president Sebastion Coe.

“Without the crowds, it’s a bad event,” Coe told Runner’s World in April. “I’d rather wait and put events back into the schedule when crowds are able to be there than have events with empty stands.”

It’s ultimately up to the hosting cities to determine what the meets will look like, who can compete, and who can watch—with many of those parameters determined by local government restrictions.

“The uncertainty over future government restrictions and timings in the different host countries requires flexibility and adaptability on the part of meeting organizers when planning, staging and offering competition opportunities to athletes,” the Diamond League said in the press release.

(05/30/2020) ⚡AMP
by Runner’s World
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Usain Bolt Is Officially the World’s Fastest Dad

Congratulations to the world-record holder and his longtime partner on the birth of a baby girl!

Usain Bolt is a “girl dad,” after it was announced that he and longtime partner Kasi Bennett had their first child.

The 33-year-old world-record holder, who won nine Olympic gold medals and 11 world championships in his career, retired from the sport in 2017.

Usain Bolt is officially the fastest dad in the world.

Kasi Bennett, the longtime partner of the 100- and 200-meter world-record holder, gave birth to the couple’s first child, a girl. The news was first announced by Jamaican Prime Minister Andrew Holness and confirmed by CNN.

Bolt announced the pregnancy back in January, and he held a gender reveal party in March, where he announced that he would be a “girl dad” like the late NBA star Kobe Bryant, who died in January in a helicopter crash.

The 33-year-old Jamaican set his world records in the 100 meters (9.58 seconds) and 200 meters (19.19 seconds) at the 2009 World Championships in Berlin. His resume also includes 11 world championships and nine Olympic gold medals between the 2008, ’12, and ’16 Games.

The birth of his daughter comes less than three years into Bolt’s retirement from track and field, though he has been filling his time with other athletic pursuits. To name a few, Bolt joined an Australian professional soccer team, the Central Coast Mariners, in 2018, tied the 40-yard dash at the 2019 NFL Combine in 4.22 seconds , and ran a race in a zero-gravity plane.

(05/30/2020) ⚡AMP
by Runner’s World
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Kipchoge, Bekele to face off in virtual relay marathon

Marathon icons Eliud Kipchoge of Kenya and Ethiopia's Kenenisa Bekele will hold a virtual team relay marathon between June 6 and 7, which may act as a dry run to their unprecedented clash in London in October.

With the world closed down and international travel not allowed in many countries, the two greatest marathon runners will form part of the teams that will compete in the relay race together with Uganda's world 10,000m champion Joshua Cheptegei and New York marathon champion Geoffrey Kamworor.

All four runners are managed by Global Sports Communications, under the NN Running team, and are using the lockdown to offer fans and elite runners hope as they wait for the sports season to open starting in August.

"On June 6-7, we run as one in a worldwide virtual marathon relay. Assemble a team of four, or be assigned a team with three other runners from around the world. Run against, or even possibly with, superstars like Eliud, Kenenisa, Joshua and Geoffrey," said NN Running team on Friday.

The virtual relay marathon is open to all athletics across the world. Each individual runner will be required to run for 10.5km alone so the team completes a full marathon together. This allows participants to safely run solo in their own locations while running in a team via the virtual standings.

"My teammates and I are really looking forward to joining the relay in this wonderful initiative. Success comes with hard work," world marathon record holder Kipchoge said.

"It has been an unusual time whereby all runners had to readjust their plans after having prepared well towards their own goals for this past spring season," the Olympic champion continued.

Bekele and Kipchoge will clash in the rescheduled London marathon on October 4 with Kipchoge hinting at making an attempt to break the course record, which he set in winning the 2019 race in the English capital.

Kipchoge cemented his status last year as the greatest marathon runner of all time by clocking the third-fastest time in history and becoming the first man to achieve a quartet of victories at the London marathon.

He clocked 2:02:37, carving 28 seconds out of the London course record he set three years ago.

"I hope to win again. We all look forward to a positive future and I believe that this is a great first step in that direction. Marathon is a sport whereby elite athletes and fun runners are actually all racing in the same race. It's what makes our sport unique and I find the essence of this to be beautiful," said Kipchoge. Enditem

(05/30/2020) ⚡AMP
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Sara Hall is transitioning to 5K/10K training with some help from her kids

At 37, marathoner Sara Hall is still at the top of her game. Though the Olympic Marathon Trials in Atlanta did not go her way and she ultimately dropped out of the race, she ran her personal best of 2:22:16—the sixth-fastest time in American history—less than a year ago at the Berlin Marathon.

Hall is now using the quarantine period to transition into 5K and 10K training in preparation for the 2021 Olympic Trials on the track.

The shift to speed work comes with an added bonus: Hall can do workouts with her two high school age daughters, Hana and Mia, who are training to break five minutes in the mile. That’s about 10K pace for Sara.

“They will often hop in and out of my workout and it pushes them, which is fun to be able to be more actively involved in their training and goals,” she told PodiumRunner.

(05/29/2020) ⚡AMP
by Johanna Gretschel
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2020 US Olympic Trials Marathon

2020 US Olympic Trials Marathon

The 2020 US Olympic Trials for both men and women took place in Atlanta, Ga on Sunday Feb 29. Runners had to qualify by running certain standards beforehand. The trials are hosted by the Atlanta Track club. The course runs through the heart of Atlanta and past monuments from the 1996 Olympic Games Most countries around the world use a...

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The 2020 abbott Longford Marathon cancelled due to Covid-19 Pandemic

The Longford Marathon Committee have taken the decision to cancel the 2020 Abbott Longford Marathon due to the Covid-19 pandemic.

The committee released a statement today; "We have carefully considered the logistics and challenges posed by the pandemic to the safe and successful running of our event on August 30 and we have reluctantly concluded that it will not be possible to stage the event while ensuring the health and safety of the runners, stewards, supporters and volunteers.

"If you have already entered this year’s race, then we thank you sincerely for your support for our event and we are sorry for the inconvenience that this cancellation will cause you. Your entry will be automatically transferred to next year’s race, however if you prefer then we will arrange a refund of your entry fee instead. If you wish to obtain a refund then please contact us by e-mail at info@longfordmarathon.com and we will process a refund for you.

"We know that people have committed time and effort to training and preparation for this year’s race and we are organising a virtual event to mark the Abbott Longford Marathon to be held in the month of August 2020. More details on this will be announced on our website and our Facebook page very soon.

"The Committee wishes to thank our main sponsor Abbott for their ongoing support for the event through this difficult time.

"We intend to use the additional time and resources we have available to ensure that next year’s race will be a very special event, and bigger and better than ever before."

(05/29/2020) ⚡AMP
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Longford Marathon

Longford Marathon

The Friendly Marathon in the Heart Of Ireland. Ireland's friendliest marathon has a reputation for being one of Irelands best organised events, with a flat course, through the beautiful countryside of Longford, Roscommon and Leitrim beside the River Shannon. Take a place,its an ideal run for anybody training for the Dublin City Marathon in October. Organised by runners, for...

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Sara Hall, will be shooting for the women’s treadmill half marathon record on June 6 in Chaski Challenge

Inspired by the success of last month’s Quarantine Backyard Ultra, a handful of elite runners will attempt to break treadmill world records across five distances next week. Sara Hall, the fastest American female marathoner of 2019, is the headliner, and will be shooting for the women’s treadmill half marathon record of 1:20:43 (Hall’s pb is 1:08:58).

The event, which will be held on Saturday, June 6, and is known as the Chaski Challenge, is the brainchild of Tyler Andrews, a 2:15 marathoner who ran a world best of 2:46:06 for 50,000 meters on the track in 2018 (LRC recorded a podcast with him shortly before that race).

Before the coronavirus pandemic hit, Andrews had planned to spend the spring training with Jim Walmsley in Flagstaff as the two men prepared to race the famed Comrades Marathon in South Africa. Instead, Andrews is now based at his parents’ house in Concord, Mass., but is still training hard and wanted to create an opportunity to allow himself and others to demonstrate their fitness.

“A lot of people are really fit out there right now and have nothing to do with it,” Andrews says. “So we wanted to do that. And then just create a really compelling, fun, conversation-provoking event that people can watch on a Saturday night and have fun with.”

Similar to the Quarantine Backyard Ultra, the Chaski Challenge will feature a free live online broadcast and tracking of the record attempts around the country with cameras aimed at each elite runner’s treadmill. 2016 Olympian Marielle Hall and ultrarunner Kris Brown (13th at 2019 Western States 100) will serve as commentators.

“Chaski Endurance Collective, which is my coaching collective, we have a bunch of different athletes from different areas on staff and we were kind of just bouncing around ideas and talking about what could we do that’s kind of building off what Quarantine Backyard Ultra did really well, because that event just absolutely crushed it,” Andrews says.

Andrews also felt the inclusive nature of the Quarantine Backyard Ultra — anyone could sign up and compete — was one of the keys to its success, and to that end, the Chaski Challenge will feature free-to-enter 5k and 50k races, which anyone can sign up for and complete during a 24-hour window beginning on June 5 at 4 p.m. ET (there is an optional donation to Feeding America’s COVID-19 relief efforts).

At 6 p.m. ET on June 6, the broadcast will begin with the men’s 50k, which features Andrews, 2014 world 100k champ Max King, and Quarantine Backyard Ultra champion Mike Wardian (2:54 50k pb). Midway through that race, the men’s half marathon (featuring 61:51 man John Raneri) and the women’s half marathon (featuring Hall and 2:27 marathoner Renee Metivier) will begin. Mario Mendoza will also be attempting to break the 50-mile record; that attempt will begin prior to the broadcast.

(05/29/2020) ⚡AMP
by Jonathan Gault
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Boston Marathon Runners disappointed over Marathon cancellation

The Boston Athletic Association announced this year's event will be held as a virtual event.

Those who were supposed to run the marathon this year can run the course anytime between September 7 and 14.

Runners will be required to complete the distance within six hours and provide proof of timing.    

The president of the Greater Springfield Harriers Running Club says cancelling the marathon was the right move.

"I think myself, like most runners we really understand it. With the marathon just how many runners, where they are coming from, the number of volunteers needed, it's just not the right thing to do,” said Bob Landry of the Greater Springfield Harriers.     

When the marathon was initially postponed on March 12 there were only about 20 COVID-19 cases in Boston but now there are more than 13,000.

(05/29/2020) ⚡AMP
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Boston Marathon

Boston Marathon

The 124th Boston Marathon originally scheduled for April 20 was postponed to September 14 and then May 28 it was cancelled for 2020. The next Boston Marathon is scheduled for April 19, 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...

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Kenya’s long distance runner, Mikel Kiprotich Mutai has been handed a four-year ban with compatriot Japhet Kipchirchir Kipkorir getting a provisional suspension for doping offences

World Athletics’ (WA) Athletes Integrity Unit (AIU) announced on Friday that it had found Mutai guilty of having tested positive to prohibited substance Norandrosterone.

Mutai’s suspension starts on March 20, 2020 for four years and his results dating back to December 15, 2019 will be nullified.

Mutai and another Kenyan long distance runner Alex Oloitiptip were flagged down on May 13 by AIU for separate violations of anti-doping rules. AIU is yet to determine on Oloitiptip’s case after the athlete was flagged down for his whereabouts violation.

In his last race, Mutai finished third during the Taipei Marathon in 2:17:14 on December 15 last year in Taipei, almost a month after claiming an ninth place finish at Nanchang International Marathon in China in 2:19:06.

Mutai had started the year at the Standard Chartered Hong Kong Marathon where he finished eighth in 2:12:54 on February 17, having won the race for the first time in 2016 in 2:12:12.

Mutai, who has personal best 2:09:18 from 2012 Dubai Marathon, would then finish sixth at New Taipei City Marathon in 2:25:32 on March 1 last year.

Mutai started his road running career at the 2008 Nairobi Half Marathon where he finished eighth has a chance to appeal the decision.

Kipkorir, who finished third at 2011 Gold Coast Marathon in personal best 2:10:50, too has tested positive to prohibited substance Norandrosterone.

Mutai, Kipkorir and Oloitiptip join several other Kenyans who have either been banned or under provisional suspension for various doping offences this year by AIU.

They are the 2017 London Marathon champion Daniel Wanjiru, Kennth Kipkemoi, 2014 World Under-20 800m champion Alfred Kipketer and former world marathon record holder, Wilson Kipsang.

Others are Mercy Kibarus, Vincent Kipsegechi Yator and Peter Kwemoi.

(05/29/2020) ⚡AMP
by Bernard Rotich
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CrossFiter Lee Davis set a new record with 16 Murph workouts in 24 hours

This Memorial Day, local Citadel alumni and Rhapsody CrossFit athlete Lee Davis set a new record for consecutive "Murph" workouts completed within 24 hours.

The Murph is a commemorative workout done by athletes around the world on Memorial Day in honor of the late Lieutenant Michael P. Murphy, a Navy SEAL killed in action in Afghanistan in 2005.

Davis completed 16 rounds of the intense workout in 22 hours and 3 minutes. The Murph consists of: 1 mile run, 100 pull-ups, 200 push-ups, 300 squats, 1 mile run. The prescribed standard is to do the workout in a 20-pound weighted vest, to mimic body armor.

In a press release, Rhapsody head coach Alan Shaw said: "Murph is, hands down, one of the most challenging workouts in CrossFit, but it’s about so much more than being a tough benchmark.

It’s what we as a community do to thank and pay tribute to those who gave their all for us."Davis is no stranger to tough physical challenges. In March he ran a 100-mile ultramarathon, and he hopes to run the length of South Carolina later this summer. 

His Murph application to the Guinness Book of World records is under review.

(05/29/2020) ⚡AMP
by Connelly Hardaway
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90-year-old Lew Hollander, plans to complete virtual triathlon to celebrate birthday during pandemic

While alcohol and food purchases soar during the 2020 pandemic and most of the world binges on Netflix, it appears that we have all succumbed to a sedentary, unhealthy lifestyle and the Quanran-15 pound weight gain will be a reality.

Then we get a boost of inspiration from someone showing us how to thrive during COVID-19. Lew Hollander, turning 90, will be completing a Virtual Triathlon on his birthday. Lew explains, "Well all the big plans and races for my 9th decade got delayed and/or cancelled by some microbe you cannot even see. So, what to do? On my birthday I am doing the Virtual PDX Triathlon 2020! I get a racing tank, a beach towel, sunglasses, a medal and results and I can do it close to home. I have a photographer, a timer, and my wonderful wife Karen to help! I am excited about that. Everyone should sign up to do it with me!"

The PDX Triathlon is celebrating its 39th year and due to Coronavirus has had to transition to a Virtual event for the first time ever. Athletes compete from May 30th – June 7th and includes a Olympic, Sprint & Super Sprint Triathlon, Duathlon, & AquaBike, 5K, 10K, Half Marathon and Kids Tri. Since the time period to complete the distances is over a week, many athletes take on the Beast Challenge by racing in multiple distances and events and earning the coveted BEAST medal. Why Racing Events produces the event and has provided athletes with rules and guidelines for participating in a virtual triathlon. Here is a link to the "How the Heck do you do a Virtual Triathlon" summary email which includes a link to the LIVE presentation explaining all the rules.

Their guidelines include details such as:

Where to swim and how to do it safely.

What to do if you don’t feel comfortable swimming due to lack of pool access and training.

Where to bike and how to do it safely.

Where to run and how to do it safely.

How to do transitions and how much time would be allotted between each leg of the race.

How to upload results for each leg of the race.

You can register to race with 90-year-old Lew at https://whyracingevents.com/pdx-triathlon-at-blue-lake/

Sherri McMillan, race director for WHY Racing Events explains “We could have just canceled the race but when you have athletes like Lew, it reminds you that quitting is not an option. Virtual racing is better than nothing and Lew teaches us that when presented with an obstacle, you stay the course! No excuses – just get it done!”

(05/29/2020) ⚡AMP
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The Boston Marathon has been canceled for the first time in its 124-year history.

The 2020 Boston Marathon has been canceled. 

BAA organizers said Thursday that they instead will have a “virtual event” in which participants who verify that they ran 26.2 miles on their own will receive their finisher’s medal. The race had originally been scheduled for April 20 before being postponed for five months because of the coronavirus pandemic.

“While we cannot bring the world to Boston in September, we plan to bring Boston to the world for a historic 124th Boston Marathon,” said Tom Grilk, the CEO of the Boston Athletic Association.

The BAA has announced that the 124th Boston Marathon will be held as a virtual event, following Boston Mayor Martin Walsh’s cancellation of the marathon as a mass participation road running event due to the COVID-19 pandemic. pic.twitter.com/tlIdvsU9sq

The B.A.A. will offer a series of virtual events & activities throughout September’s Marathon Week to bring the Boston Marathon experience to the world. This will include exclusive panel discussions, champions interviews, and a downloadable toolkit with signature race elements.

Although the title of Boston Marathon champion is contested by a few dozen elite athletes, the field includes more than 30,000 recreational and charity runners, with as many as 1 million people lined up along the course trek from Hopkinton to Boston’s Back Bay. That presented organizers with a social distancing problem that won’t be solved by the fall.

The cancellation is the first ever for the race, which began in 1897 when 15 men drew a starting line in the dirt in Ashland and headed for the city to commemorate the first modern Olympic Games the previous year. In 1918, the format was modified to a relay due to World War I; the 2013 race was stopped when two bombs exploded at the finish line, several hours after the winners had finished but while many recreational runners were still on the course.

For each of those years, the race was held in April on the state holiday to commemorate the battles in Lexington and Concord that marked the start of the Revolutionary War. Traditionally, the Red Sox have scheduled their first pitch for the morning so baseball fans could wander over to Kenmore Square after the game to see the runners pass by with one mile to go.

In March, when the race was postponed to Sept. 14, Mayor Marty Walsh cited the desire to salvage the estimated $211 million pumped into the city’s economy each year. The Boston Athletic Association and marathon runners also raise about $40 million for charity.

Walsh said at the time that there was no thought of excluding the tens of thousands of amateur runners who consider running Boston a bucket list achievement. The Tokyo Marathon went on as scheduled in March with just over 200 elite runners but not the 38,000 recreational runners who had signed up; spectators at the Los Angeles Marathon were advised to practice social distancing.

“That’s not the Boston Marathon. We’re an inclusive marathon,” Walsh said. “The Boston Marathon is for everyone.”

The 2021 Boston Marathon is scheduled for April 19 and the 125th anniversary edition is scheduled for April 18, 2022.

(05/28/2020) ⚡AMP
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Boston Marathon

Boston Marathon

The 124th Boston Marathon originally scheduled for April 20 was postponed to September 14 and then May 28 it was cancelled for 2020. The next Boston Marathon is scheduled for April 19, 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...

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Reigning Olympic 800 meters champion David Rudisha underwent surgery on Thursday

Reigning Olympic 800 meters champion David Rudisha will be sidelined for up to 16 weeks after fracturing his left ankle in the grounds of his home in Kenya.

His agent Michel Boeting confirmed Rudisha, who also won gold over 800m at London 2012, underwent surgery on Thursday.

A statement read: “On Tuesday, May 19, Rudisha twisted his left ankle at his rural home in Kilgoris, Narok County, Kenya.

“During a walk on the compound the 31-year-old stepped on uneven ground, and initially believed it was not a serious injury.

“He continued with exercises that wouldn’t cause further harm to his ankle but after a lack of improvement over the weekend, he underwent an examination and was diagnosed with an ankle fracture at St Luke’s hospital in Eldoret.

“Rudisha, who is attempting to compete at his third Olympic Games next year, is expected to be out of training for 12 to 16 weeks and hopes to resume rehabilitation after that.”

Rudisha’s winning run at London 2012 came in a world-record time of one minute 40.91 seconds, a record which still stands.

(05/28/2020) ⚡AMP
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Athletic superstars like Eliud Kipchoge and Kenenisa Bekele will take part in a worldwide virtual team relay marathon next month

Athletic superstars Eliud Kipchoge, Kenenisa Bekele, Joshua Cheptegei and Geoffrey Kamworor are to take part in a worldwide virtual team relay marathon next month.

The marathon, which will take place between 6 and 7 June, is open to all athletics fans worldwide.

An initiative of the NN Running team, MA RA TH ON is a virtual team relay marathon race where people around the world can form a team of four to cover the marathon distance.

Each individual runner covers 10.5k so the team completes a full marathon together, alone. This allows participants to safely run solo in their own locations while running in a team via the virtual standings.

“I can say that myself and my teammates are really looking forward to join the relay in this wonderful initiative," said Kipchoge, the world marathon record holder.

"It has been an unusual time whereby all runners had to readjust their plans after having prepared well towards their own goals for this past spring season.

"We all look forward to a positive future and I believe that this a great first step in that direction. Marathon is a sport whereby elite athletes and fun runners are actually all racing in the same race. It’s what makes our sport unique and I find the essence of this to be beautiful.“

(05/28/2020) ⚡AMP
by Sport Africa
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China's IOC member Li Lingwei said that the postponement of the Tokyo Olympic Games could be a chance for athletes to become real champions

"We are all experiencing things that have never happened before in our lives. Once you go through a hard time, you can become a real strongman," Li said.

As the Tokyo Games postponed, the vice president of the Chinese Olympic Committee admitted it would affect the preparation of the teams, especially given that the COVID-19 pandemic is still spreading across the world and the time to restart sporting events globally remains uncertain.

"If you are preparing for a competition, you will have a clear goal with inner potential and passion. But if not, the daily training can be very boring," the former badminton world champion said she understood the athletes' feelings.

Despite many obstacles ahead, Li encouraged athletes to take this period as a chance to re-adjust since the situation is fair to everyone.

"Instead of waiting passively, athletes should make full use of this opportunity to self-reflect, recuperate from injuries and tackle shortcomings," the 56-year-old former legendary shuttler suggested.

"Today's hard work may not immediately pay off tomorrow, but will eventually bring you good results in the future."

Li, who is also a deputy to the National People's Congress of China, believed next year's Olympic Games will be a comprehensive examination, where athletes could show the world how they arranged their training and lives during the pandemic.

"Will you be fully prepared? Will you have your skills improved? Can you accept a high-intensive game schedule? An excellent athlete is not someone who only runs fast or jumps high, but one who is capable of dealing with various situations and having comprehensive abilities," Li noted.

"From this perspective, I think the champion of the Tokyo Olympics is the real champion."

The Tokyo Games will kick off on July 23, 2021, with Beijing Winter Olympics being held six months later.

Speaking of the legacies of Beijing 2022, Li focused on mental ones, saying "sports play an important role in children's education."

"Physical education is not only about doing exercises but to let the children learn to respect the rules, their rivals and referees, and know how to face success and failure, cooperation and competition," she pointed out.

(05/28/2020) ⚡AMP
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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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World marathon record holder Eliud Kipchoge distributes food and face masks to athletes at Kaptagat in Elgeyo-Marakwet County

Eliud Kipchoge has appealed to more well-wishers to contribute towards the Covid-19 food stimulus programme for athletes, saying he’s eager to see the programme roll out to the rest of Kenya.

So far, the focus of the relief food has been in the Rift Valley region where the Olympic champion has himself distributed food to athletes in Kericho, Nandi, Uasin Gishu and Elgeyo-Marakwet counties through the Ministry of Sport, his Eliud Kipchoge Foundation and other well-wishers.

On Wednesday, Kipchoge was in Elgeyo-Marakwet County again to assist athletes in his training base of Kaptagat after well-wishers Zaharia Hassanali and family in collaboration with Eliud Kipchoge Foundation gifted 24 athletes with food aid.

Kipchoge said many athletes have been suffering and need support because they can’t train on empty stomachs, forcing him to reach out to various corporates to help reach the vulnerable.

With more support from well-wishers, Kipchoge said he will go across the country to help athletes, footballers, volleyball players and any other sportspersons in dire need of support.

“I have been doing this for four weeks now, and I’m trying to reach those athletes who are vulnerable,” the world marathon record holder said.

“Today, I managed to meet 24 athletes who benefited from the exercise. I know how tough it is to train in an empty stomach and I will always support the upcoming in this exercise including those who are in other events.

“In these hard times, I know what the athletes are going through, and I would urge for more support so that together we can beat this pandemic which has affected the athletes’ lives.”

With elite runners depending on races across the globe, cessation of sports events due to fears over the spread of the coronavirus has forced the athletes into a tight financial corner.

Kipchoge also thanked Sara Janmohamed, who made 100 masks for the Olympic champion’s foundation, urging more youths to be innovative.

“I was touched by Janmohamed, who is still in secondary school, who was able to make 100 masks which I have also distributed to athletes. I would like to urge the youths to be more proactive in the fight against the Covid-19,” he said.

He urged athletes to continue training hard hoping that the next season would be better if the virus is contained.

“For now, apart from the food distribution, safety is more paramount but when competition resumes we shall come out stronger as athletes as we look forward to a better season,” said Kipchoge.

Kipchoge is preparing for the much awaited duel with Ethiopian legend Kenenisa Bekele at the rescheduled London Marathon on October 4.

“Right now, safety is my priority and I will soon be starting my training and when that time comes, I will be able to tell you my training programme,” added Kipchoge.

Ismail Cheboror, one of the athletes who benefited yesterday, said he was touched by the support from the athletics legend and he is looking forward to be like him in future.

“I’m happy for the support I have received which will keep me going in my training. “Kipchoge is God-sent and I want to be like him in future because he always inspires me,” said Cheboror.

Sarah Jelagat, who is a road racer, couldn’t hide her joy after receiving her food ration, saying she has been struggling to put food on the table.

“I was preparing for a road race in the United States of America in March, but it was cancelled due to the virus and since then I have just been training to keep fit,” said Jelagat.

(05/28/2020) ⚡AMP
by Bernard Rotich
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The 2020 St. Jude Rock 'n' Roll Nashville Marathon & 1/2 Marathon has been moved to Nov. 21

The 21st annual race originally was scheduled for April 25. It was postponed on March 18 due to the coronavirus pandemic.

Officials released this statement Tuesday:

"We appreciate the continued patience of our participants since our last update. Over the past weeks we have worked diligently with various host city partners to determine potential options and secure a new race date. After assessing all event scenarios, we are pleased to share the 2020 St. Jude Rock ‘n’ Roll Nashville Marathon & 1/2 Marathon, has been rescheduled for November 21, 2020."

All registered participants of the event will receive an email with further information. The marathon and half marathon annually draw about 30,000 participants along with more than 20,000 spectators.

The starting line is on Lower Broadway, and the finish line is at Nissan Stadium for both races. 

Hendersonville's Scott Wietecha has won the last seven Nashville marathons.

(05/27/2020) ⚡AMP
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St. Jude Rock N Roll Nashville Marathon & 1/2 Marathon

St. Jude Rock N Roll Nashville Marathon & 1/2 Marathon

The St. Jude Rock ‘n’ Roll Nashville Marathon & 1/2 Marathon (formerly St. Jude Country Music Marathon & 1/2 Marathon) gives you the opportunity to enjoy an up close and personal tour of Music City, one of the New York Times’ top destinations in the world! Run through the Honky Tonks of Lower Broadway and take a musical tour through...

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Ex-800m World champ Eunice Sum eyes Olympic medal

The 2013 800 meters world champion Eunice Sum is focusing on winning an Olympic medal over the distance.

She has been training alone at her home in the leafy suburb of Elgon View in Eldoret following a government directive to ban social gatherings to prevent the spread of coronavirus.

Nation Sport caught up with her at her maize farm in Ngeria, Uasin Gishu County.

Sum said that she is looking forward to a better season when competition resumes in the new schedule of the Wanda Diamond League in August after some meetings were cancelled owing to Covid-19.

“I have been following a training programme sent to us by our coach, though it’s challenging to train alone. We are used to group training which motivates us to persevere,” she said.

Sum is back to the drawing board after three races she was supposed to compete in were called off across the globe because of the virus.

She hopes to use the Diamond League races to sharpen her skills ahead of the Olympics Games that were moved to next year.

“I was in good shape for the cancelled races. I now want to use the Diamond League races to rectify small mistakes as I focus on the Olympic Games,” she said.

The athlete is also preparing to participate in the World Athletics Continental Tour which was moved to September 26 in Nairobi.

“All is not lost, and my training has been going on well. I want to improve my personal best time,” Sum said.

Concerning the Olympics Games, she said she has enough time to prepare. Her aim is to win a medal.

“My goal at the Olympics Games will be a top three finish because I’m missing an Olympic medal in my cabinet of trophies,” added Sum.

(05/27/2020) ⚡AMP
by Bernard Rotich
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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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Less than 300 days to go for Bathurst 2021 Cross Country Athletics World Championships

In less than 300 days’ time, the world’s best distance athletes will descend on New South Wales in Australia for the World Athletics Cross Country Championships Bathurst 2021 on 20 March.

The weekend will include mass participation races, highlighted by a golden ticket event where amateur athletes will race for the chance to compete against the world’s best in the senior championship races. The event will also include the Australian cross country club challenge, which will pit athletics clubs from across the country against one another, racing for bragging rights as the best cross country club in the nation.

Brenda LaPorte, Chair of the Local Organising Committee, said organisers are working hard to fulfil the vision for the event with an outstanding athletic experience, a true celebration of the sport and Australian culture.

“The 2019 championships in Denmark certainly raised the bar and in 2021 we’re looking to take the World Athletics Cross Country Championships to an even higher level,” said LaPorte.

“We’re planning that everyone who visits Bathurst for the championships leaves with the memory of a truly unique, and warmly welcome, regional Australian experience.

“I’m also pleased to say that we will host an invitational para cross country race, which is the first time that para cross country has featured in a World Athletics Cross Country Championships.”

A technical and challenging championship course awaits participants with constant changes in terrain, elevation and direction breaking up a runner’s rhythm. The course has an uphill start and incorporates unique features such as the billabong and a run through a vineyard and its stunning autumn foliage. The senior races will comprise five loops of the two-kilometre course.

World Athletics President Sebastian Coe is looking forward to attending the event.

“I want to express my thanks to Athletics Australia, the NSW Government through Destination NSW, and the team at World Athletics for their efforts in producing what will be an extraordinary championship,” Coe said.

“This has been an exceptionally challenging year for the community and for sport globally, so I’m very excited about the prospect of a return to world championship competition next year. Bathurst promises to be a great celebration of sport, from elite to community level. I really love cross country. These championships will not only feature the best distance runners of their generation, but possibly of all time. I encourage anyone with young people in their family to attend as this is a truly inspiring event.”

Spectators at the event can expect action-packed racing on a looped course with easy access to all areas, along with a range of off-track entertainment and activities to keep the whole family engaged. For fans unable to get to Bathurst, the World Athletics Cross Country Championships Bathurst 2021 will feature a live international television broadcast and live stream with more than 60 countries expected to broadcast the event.

“This will be the first World Athletics event to be held in Australia for 25 years, so it will be fantastic to welcome 550 elite runners from more than 60 countries to the famed Bathurst racetrack to compete,” said Stuart Ayres, New South Wales’ Minister for Jobs, Investment, Tourism and Western Sydney.

Legendary Australian runner Rob de Castella is Head of Delegation for the Australian Team and said the host nation’s athletes have plenty of motivation to perform.

“Having only ever had one winner of the event, when Benita Willis blitzed the world back in 2004, the Australian team will need to overcome history,” he said. “But I know they are excited to race in front of a large, parochial home crowd who will spur them on. The team will also be inspired to etch their names into the sporting folklore of Bathurst’s Mount Panorama alongside other Australian sporting greats.”

(05/27/2020) ⚡AMP
by World Athletics
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World Athletics Cross Country Championships

World Athletics Cross Country Championships

Athletes from across the globe will descend on Australia for the World Athletics Cross Country Championships Bathurst 2021. To celebrate the one year to go mark, the local organising committee has unveiled the official course animation for the event, which is scheduled to take place on 20 March 2021. Mount Panorama is better known as the home...

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Over 18,000 Global Runners from 95 nations will Take Part in 6K, 10K or Remix Challenge Rock 'n' Roll VR5

The global community of walkers and runners came together for the fifth edition in the Rock ‘n’ Roll® Virtual Running™ (VR™) Series, Rock ‘n’ Roll VR5, with over 18,000 people from 95 nations and 47 states registered to step up to the virtual start line. Rock ‘n’ Roll VR5 gave participants the opportunity to challenge themselves with two different race distances that included 10K and 6K options. In addition, the Remix Challenge was offered for those who took on both distances, with finishers earning access to three medals through the Rock ‘n’ Roll VR Finisher Bundles.Participants were able to compete anywhere, indoors or outdoors, as long as the distance of their choosing was completed in one session between Friday, May 22 at 2 p.m. ET and event close Sunday, May 24 at 7:59 p.m. ET.

Participants in Rock ‘n’ Roll VR5 came from around the world and ranged in age from 18 to 82. The United States led the way with over 9,000 walkers and runners followed by the United Kingdom (over 800), Canada (over 700), Mexico (over 500) and Portugal (over 250).

Other nations represented included Bangladesh, Cuba, Ireland, Jamaica, Lithuania, Poland, South Korea and Thailand, among others. Of the 47 U.S. states represented, the greatest number came from California, followed by Texas, Virginia, New Jersey and Florida.

Nations joining a Rock 'n' Roll VR event for the first time were Afghanistan, Bermuda, Kyrgyzstan, Pakistan, and Syria, among others. To date, over 37,000 people from across the globe have joined the Rock ‘n’ Roll® Virtual Running Club platform, giving them access to the series of weekly races, challenges, and rewards. Just under 8,000 participants took on a Rock ‘n’ Roll Virtual Running Club™ Challenge leading up to Rock ‘n’ Roll VR5.

Several separate running and workout-based challenges were offered with the opportunity for special prizes such as a pair of Rock ‘n’ Roll Launch 7 by Brooks Running Company sneakers, a Rock ‘n’ Roll 26.2 or 13.1 Medal Display Hanger, and a Rock ‘n’ Roll by Brooks Running Company Run Club Stealth long-sleeve shirt + Rock ‘n’ Roll Cascadia 7” pair of shorts.

The challenges included the Brooks: Find Some Run Happy III Challenge, St. Jude: 100% Worth It Challenge, and George's Squatathon Challenge.

(05/27/2020) ⚡AMP
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Rock N Roll Philadelphia Half Marathon

Rock N Roll Philadelphia Half Marathon

The Rock ‘n’ Roll Marathon Series makes running fun. Each year, more athletes participate in Rock ‘n’ Roll running events than any other running series in the United States. What started as a simple idea in 1998 – a marathon with bands along the course celebrating each participant – soon transformed the running landscape igniting the second running boom. While...

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Ingebrigtsen v Cheruiyot: Impossible Games take shape

A world record attempt in the hurdles, a star-studded pole vault battle and a long distance showdown between Norway and Kenya in the middle distance will all be on the agenda when the Impossible Games take place in Oslo next month. 

Kenyan middle-distance star and reigning 1500m Diamond League Champion Timothy Cheruiyot is to go head to head with Norway’s Ingebrigtsen brothers in a one-off, team event at the Bislett Impossible Games next month. 

The Ingebrigtsens will run in Bislett while Cheruiyot-led rival team will compete in Nairobi, in what Oslo meeting director Steinar Hoen described as “the first virtual race at such a level in the history of athletics”.

The Maurie Plant Memorial Race, named in honour of the former Bislett organising committee stalwart, will see the two teams battle it out in an innovative new format over 2000 metres.

Both teams will start with five runners and end with three, and the winner will be the team with the best overall time from their top three runners. 

A Wanda Diamond League exhibition event, the Impossible Games were conceived by Bislett Games organisers to allow this year's Oslo Diamond League meeting to go ahead under Norway's coronavirus regulations. 

Instead of the usual, elite-level hunt for Diamond League points, the Impossible Games will instead showcase the innovative spirit of athletics with a series of set-piece exhibition events. 

Beyond the 2000m battle, the programme is taking shape for the Games, which will take place at Bislett Stadium on June 11. 

Confirmed events now include:

A long-distance pole vault showdown involving world-record holder Mondo Duplantis and record Diamond League Champion Renaud Lavillenie.

A 300m hurdles world record attempt from World Champion and Norwegian star Karsten Warholm

A Norway vs Finland duel in the women’s 200m hurdles

An all-Scandinavian discus competition involving Swedish World Champion Daniel Ståhl.

A Norwegian record attempt over 1000m by Filip Ingebrigtsen. 

The meeting will be shown on Norwegian public broadcaster NRK, with commentary from British middle-distance legend and 2000m European record holder Steve Cram.

(05/26/2020) ⚡AMP
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Japanese Prime Minister Shinzō Abe has lifted the country's state of emergency after a decline in the number of COVID-19 cases in the Tokyo 2020 host nation

Japan declared the state of emergency on April 16 after fearing a second wave of infection from the virus, and further extended it in early May.

Its introduction came a week after Tokyo, Osaka and five other urban areas had restrictions placed on them from April 7.

Many areas of the nation had previously seen the restrictions lifted, but now the remaining five prefectures will join them.

These are the Tokyo Metropolitan Area, its neighbouring areas of Chiba, Kanagawa and Saitama and the northern island of Hokkaido.

The nation has seen a fall in confirmed cases over the past month, recording its lowest number of new daily cases yesterday since February 29 with 14.

It has also seen a fall in the number of active cases, reaching a peak of 11,443 on April 28 with the number now down to 2,317.

However, the city and host of the 2020 Olympics, Tokyo, saw a return to double figures for confirmed cases in a day, suggesting that the threat of infection is still there.

"We had very stringent criteria for lifting the state of emergency," Abe said in a televised press conference today.

"We have judged that we have met this criteria.

"Today we will lift the state of emergency nationwide."

Economic Revitalisation Minister Yasutoshi Nishimura told a panel today, according to Kyodo News, that the state of emergency is "no longer necessary in all prefectures".

Nishimura had suggested yesterday that this would be the announcement made with confirmed cases falling.

The day before Japan entered its state of emergency the country had 741 confirmed cases in a single day – the second highest daily rate after 743 new cases were reported on April 11.

There will still be some restrictions put in place by the Government, with citizens asked not to cross prefectural borders until the end of the month.

The first phase of lifting restrictions will see museums and libraries reopen, while restaurants will be open during the day, closing at 10pm which is two hours later than the state of emergency rules.

A second phase could start at the end of the month, which sources suggest could see shops and cinemas reopen.

However, places like gyms, karaoke bars and music venues will still be closed.

To date, there have been more than 16,500 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Japan, resulting in the deaths of 820 people.

The outbreak caused the postponement of the Tokyo 2020 Olympics and Paralympics until next year.

However, doubts remain about the rearranged Games taking place if COVID-19 remains prevalent. 

(05/26/2020) ⚡AMP
by Michael Houston
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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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