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Molly Huddle broke three American records November 1

On Sunday night, two-time U.S. Olympian Molly Huddle broke three American records in one run at a high school track south of Boston November 1. 

Huddle ran for 60 minutes, breaking, in order, the national 15,000m, 10-mile track and one-hour records. Before Sunday, each of these records belonged to former Ottawa Marathon champion Nancy Conz, who in 1981 ran all three on the same day (just like Huddle), also at an event in Massachusetts. With her big result, Huddle added to her long list of accomplishments in the sport (which already includes the American 5K and half-marathon records, among others).

The conditions on Sunday night were far from ideal for Huddle, and she spent her hour of running in the rain. That clearly didn’t affect her too much, and she cruised to her three new records, smashing each of Conz’s previous marks. 

In her 1981 record-breaking race, Conz’s first big result came after 15,000m of running, when she posted a time of 53:06. On Sunday, Huddle ran a blazing-fast 50:07.82, just shy of a sub-50-minute result. This works out to 3:20 per kilometre up to that point, and she still had just under 10 minutes and two more American records ahead of her. Back in ’81, Conz ran a 10-mile split of 55:58, which, once again, Huddle shattered, running 53:49.9. Finally, six minutes later, Huddle set her third record of the night, covering 17,930m in 60 minutes to beat Conz’s 39-year-old record of 17,273m. 

(11/02/2020) ⚡AMP

NCAA women’s team won´t race for their school until the men's team can do the same

The College of William & Mary women’s track and field team are refusing to represent their school unless the men’s team is reinstated. According to The Virginia Pilot, 26 members of the team signed a letter stating that the women wouldn’t wear their school’s uniform to compete.

As of now, the school’s men’s team will be axed at the end of this academic year. The letter was reportedly taped to school president Katherin Rowe‘s office door on Saturday night. 

Why are more men’s running teams getting cut?

In the NCAA, several universities and colleges have cut track and field and cross-country programs due to revenue losses from COVID-19. Many schools have cited Title IX as the reason for these cuts. Title IX is an NCAA-wide rule that ensures equal opportunity for both male and female athletes, proportionate to enrolment. The policy states, “No person in the United States shall, on the basis of sex, be excluded from participation in, be denied the benefits of or be subjected to discrimination under any education program or activity receiving Federal financial assistance.” 

This means that across the entire athletic department (meaning all sports), there has to be equal opportunity for men and women to compete, which includes an equal amount of scholarship money. A sport like football, for example, draws lots of money out of the men’s scholarship pool. Without a football team (or a team of equivalent roster size) in the women’s sports, their track and field athletes reap those rewards, but the men’s running programs can suffer.

The letter

While the men’s track team was cut due to budget deficits, the cross-country team (which is one of the school’s most successful teams) remained in place. However, as all distance runners know, the distance side of track and cross-country are essentially one entity. If you cut one, you basically cut the other. 

In the letter, the women were critical of both the athletic department’s actions but also the level of transparency. The letter read, “We watched the leadership of the college retreat into hiding while the emotions were raw. We waited for the level of honesty that we’ve come to expect from our faculty, just not our leadership.”

Interestingly, the women’s boycott of their own program could now cause Title IX issues for the university. It’s unclear how a roster of non-competitors would be assessed by the NCAA, especially when many of these women compete in three seasons (cross-country, indoor and outdoor track) which, according to The Richmond Times-Dispatch, counts three times for compliance purposes. For now, the women don’t have any competitions scheduled until next semester, but come the new year their refusal to compete could present big issues for the university. 

(11/02/2020) ⚡AMP
by Madeleine Kelly

Paul Chelimo is set to race at XC Town USA Meet of Champions in Terre Haute on Nov 14

Paul Chelimo, who thrilled American distance running fans with his silver medal-winning performance in the 2016 Rio Olympic Games 5,000-meter run, has been confirmed as one of the top entries for the Men’s Elite 8K field at the XC Town USA Meet of Champions, Presented by The Garrett Companies, Nov. 14-15 at LaVern Gibson Championship XC Course in Terre Haute, Ind.

Chelimo, who competes for Nike and is based in Colorado Springs, also was the meet-record-setting victor in the USATF Men’s 5,000m at the 2017 USATF Championships, then followed that with a bronze-medal finish at the 2017 IAAF World Championships in London. He was the top-ranked USA 5,000m runner each year from 2016-19 (Track & Field News) – world-ranking in the top 4 for three of those years – and has clocked PRs of 12:57.55 for 5,000m and 27:43.89 for 10,000m on the track.

The Men’s Elite/College/Open 8K race will take place Saturday, November 14 at 11:15am at LaVern Gibson. It’s the second of the two races of the meet that will take place Saturday, with the Women’s Elite/College/Open 6k race starting the day at 10:30am. A full day of competition follows on Sunday, starting with the Middle School races and finishing with the Boys and Girls High School Championship races.

“Obviously, we are thrilled to have Paul Chelimo compete in the Men’s Elite/College/Open Race in our meet,” said NSAF Executive Director Jim Spier. “As one of the world’s best distance runners, his presence elevates an already great event.”

(11/02/2020) ⚡AMP
by Steve Underwood

Italian man wins 3,100-mile ultramarathon after 43 days of running

Andrea Marcato averaged 114K per day for six weeks to win the arduous race in Salzburg, Austria

On Monday, Italy‘s Andrea Marcato won the 2020 Sri Chinmoy Self-Transcendence 3,100-Mile Race in Salzburg, Austria. Marcato was one of five runners entered in the 4,988K run, and he took the win after 43 days and 12 hours of running. This was his first time running the 3,100-miler, and according to the event website, he became the fastest first-time runner in the race’s history. He is also just the fifth person to finish the race in fewer than 44 days.

Sri Chinmoy race

The Sri Chinmoy 3,100-miler is normally held from June to August in New York City, but due to COVID-19, organizers had to find a new venue. They ultimately decided to relocate to Salzburg, where the race started on September 13. In past years, the race has had very limited fields of 10 to 15 runners, but this year the group was even smaller, and just five men were chosen to run. Marcato was joined by Ireland’s Nirbhasa Magee, Slovakian Ananda-Lahari Zuscin, Milan Javornicky of the Czech Republic and Ushika Muckenhumer, who got the chance to race in his home town of Salzburg. Of the five men, all but Marcato and Javornicky had run the 3,100-mile race before, but Marcato’s winning time is days quicker than the PBs of his competitors.

Runners in the Sri Chinmoy ultra have 52 days to complete the run, which means they have to run at least 96K per day to make it to the finish line before the cutoff. A daily race schedule makes things even more difficult for runners, since they may only run from 6 a.m. until midnight each day. This mandatory rest period of six hours per day is certainly helpful for the athletes, but not being allowed to run as often as one would like certainly adds to the pressure of meeting that daily quota of 96K, because once midnight hits, runners can’t make up for lost time until the next morning.

Marcato’s big win

Marcato won the race handily, and his competitors are still on the course in a battle for second place. As if running 4,988K wasn’t enough, shortly after he crossed the line for the win, Marcato got back on his feet and continued to run until he hit 5,000K. As reported on the race website, Marcato ran the first 1,000 miles (1,609K) of the race in 14 days, five hours, which is an Italian record. He ran his second 1,000-mile stretch even quicker, covering the distance (and re-setting the national record) in 14 days, one hour, and he closed his third and final round of 1,000 miles even faster, posting an amazing 13 days, 23 hours. While Marcato has had a couple of days to rest, the remaining four men are still running, and they have less than a week to complete their races before the 52-day cutoff.

(11/02/2020) ⚡AMP
by Running Magazine

Minnesota man runs cross-state for LGBTQ+ community

Mikah Meyer ran 200 miles across Minnesota to raise awareness for the Outside Safe Space program

Minnesota’s Mikah Meyer recently completed a 38-day, 209-mile (336K) run across his entire state, from the border of South Dakota to the border of Wisconsin. He averaged about 10K a day and spent his nights in a van, all to raise awareness for his project called the Outside Safe Space, a program he created to support members of the LGBTQ+ community. His run didn’t break any records, but it did garner a lot of media attention for the cause, which is extremely important to Meyer (himself a member of the LGBTQ+ community).

Meyer’s run

In an interview with Fox 9 in Minneapolis, Meyer said he only picked up running a couple of years ago when his doctor said he needed to lose some weight. During the pandemic, though, he said “running has been a godsend” for him, as it was one of the only activities he could keep up when everything in the U.S. was shut down. It was on these early-pandemic training runs that he came up with the idea for a cross-Minnesota adventure. He was actually inspired by Terry Fox, which he noted while talking with Fox 9.

“I thought, ‘Maybe I can use my profession, my privilege and my platform to do something to help other people.'” Like Fox, he decided on a long run, and although he didn’t run as far as the Canadian icon did in his Marathon of Hope, the run across Minnesota was still a big project. Meyer said he wasn’t used to running as much as he did while on the road, and his daily average of about 10K was far more than his usual 11K every couple of days when at home. Still, he added that “the easiest part of my journey is the running.” The hardest part was the planning, he said, including where he would park his van to sleep each night, organizing each day with his support crew and promoting the Outside Safe Space. After 38 days on the road, Meyer completed his run on October 11.

The Outside Safe Space

“So often when LGBTQ people leave urban centres,” Meyer told Fox 9, “places where we are often accepted and appreciated, we go out into rural areas, we go out into the outdoors, and it’s less likely that we feel safe or we feel welcome.” After a years-long journey across America to visit all 419 of the country’s national parks in one trip, the outdoors are a big part of Meyer’s life, so he wants to help make these rural areas feel more welcoming for LGBTQ+ people. His plan to make this possible comes in the form of a rainbow-coloured tree, a symbol he donned throughout his run.

As he writes on his website, “The Outside Safe Space tree represents welcome to LGBTQ+ people. Whether you’re an ally or identify as LGBTQ+, wearing or displaying this symbol nonverbally communicates your support for folks being their authentic selves in rural and outdoor places, and outside traditionally welcoming spaces.”

To learn more about Meyer and the Outside Safe Space program, click here.

(11/02/2020) ⚡AMP
by Running Magazine

Competition updates for some of the best races around the world

Here is a round-up of updates relating to international competitions, from cancellations to postponements and confirmations.

This page covers announcements made since the start of July. Up until the end of June, most other significant announcements were incorporated into our 'new normal' reporting pages.

If you're a competition organiser and have news to share regarding the staging of your event, please share it with us.

Boston Marathon (was 19 Apr 2021, now autumn 2021) - postponed

The Boston Athletic Association announced that the 125th Boston Marathon, traditionally held on the third Monday in April — Patriots’ Day in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts — will be postponed until at least the fall of 2021 due to the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic.Announcement (28 October)

Tokyo Marathon (was 7 Mar 2021, now 17 Oct 2021) - rescheduled

The 2021 Tokyo Marathon will be held on Sunday 17 October 2021 with the intention of having an elite and mass race. Further details will be released in due course.Announcement (9 October)

Cross Internacional de Soria (22 Nov 2020) - cancelled

“The current situation in our territory, although much more favorable than in recent times, makes it impossible for us to stage the Cross Internacional de Soria. This Soriana Athletics Delegation, fully supported in its activities by the Soria City Council and the Soria Provincial Council, has therefore decided to cancel the 2020 Cross Internacional de Soria."(8 October)

Athens Authentic Marathon (8 Nov 2020) - cancelled

"Even by following a strict manual of rules and regulations - staging only the marathon race and not the shorter races, reducing the number of participants and having all participants to go through a Covid-19 test before the race - it was not enough. It seems that such measures would not secure the absolute safety of runners’ health, which is and will be the top priority in our minds."Announcement (1 October)

Cross de Atapuerca (15 Nov 2020) - cancelled

“Given the evolution of the Covid-19 pandemic and the impossibility of guaranteeing the safety of participants and the general public, it has been decided to cancel the Cross de Atapuerca for this year. We look forward to enjoying this outstanding sporting event again next year."(23 September)

European Cross Country Championships (13 Dec 2020) - cancelled

European Athletics has confirmed the cancellation of the European Cross Country Championships that was due to take place in Dublin, Ireland, on 13 December. As a part of an Executive Board meeting held in Lausanne, European Athletics spoke with the Fingal-Dublin 2020 local organising committee concerning the current Covid-19 situation in Ireland and the impact that this may have on the 2020 European Cross Country Championships. It soon became clear that, due to the overall uncertainty on hosting mass sporting events, the existing sanitary restrictions in Ireland, and the travel restrictions imposed across Europe due to the coronavirus pandemic, it would not be possible to host the event as scheduled.

Valencia Marathon (6 Dec 2020) - UPDATE

Update: The mass race has been cancelled, but the elite races will take place. 

World Mountain Running Championships (13-14 Nov 2020) - cancelled

"Together with our friends in the organisation team (Arista events), the local Haria government on Lanzarote and the Spanish Athletics Federation (RFEA), we have decided that this is the best action to take. It is regrettable that our mountain running community and family can not meet and share the experiences together that we have grown to love over the past 36 years of WMRA competitions."Announcement (4 September)

Meeting Città di Padova (12 Sep 2020) - cancelled

"With the impossibility of guaranteeing a competition programme with the presence of a sufficient number of international athletes, due to the global continuation of the Covid-19 pandemic, we are forced to cancel the event."Announcement (31 August)

Amsterdam Marathon (18 Oct 2020) - cancelled

"The 45th edition of the TCS Amsterdam Marathon scheduled for Sunday 18 October 2020 has been cancelled. Despite the significantly modified programme, the Municipality of Amsterdam has decided not to grant a permit to the organiser, Le Champion, in light of the rising numbers of coronavirus infections in the capital. The international nature of the marathon and increasingly complex travel options have also been deciding factors behind the decision."Announcement (21 August)

IAU 50km World Championships (27 Nov 2020) - cancelled

"Following the development of the coronavirus situation in Jordan and across the region, it is with regret that we have to inform you of the cancellation of the 2020 IAU 50 km World Championships that was planned for 27th November in Aqaba, Jordan."Announcement (15 August)

Marathon des Alpes Maritimes Nice-Cannes (29 Nov 2020) - cancelled

"Unfortunately, after having tried everything to keep the race going, we find ourselves obliged to cancel the 2020 edition of the Marathon des Alpes Maritimes Nice-Cannes. To stem the spread of the coronavirus epidemic which is currently affecting France, the Mayor of Nice, Christian ESTROSI has just decided to cancel the sporting events which bring together more than 300 competitors scheduled in Nice on the calendar for this end of year 2020."Announcement (15 August)

Paris Marathon (15 Nov 2020) - cancelled

"Faced with the difficulty that many runners, especially those coming from abroad, had in making themselves available for the 14th / 15th November, it was decided that it would be better and simpler for those concerned if we organised the Schneider Electric Marathon de Paris in 2021."Announcement (12 August)

Frankfurt Marathon (25 Oct 2020) - cancelled

The race organisers have decided to cancel the Mainova Frankfurt Marathon 2020. The 39th edition of Germany’s oldest city marathon was to have taken place on 25 October. "We have not taken this step of cancellation lightly and have done our utmost to find solutions and alternatives," says race director Jo Schindler. "Now we have to face the cold reality that cancellation is inevitable."Announcement (11 August)

Nairobi Continental Tour Gold Meeting (was 26 Sep 2020, now 3 Oct 2020) - rescheduled

The Kip Keino Classic, a World Athletics Continental Tour Gold meeting which was moved to 26 September, was rescheduled once again and will take place on 3 October.

Doha Diamond League (25 Sep 2020) - rescheduled

The 2020 Wanda Diamond League today announced a further change to its 2020 calendar, with the date for the Doha Diamond League brought forward by around a fortnight. The fifth meeting of the season was scheduled for 9 October after it could not be held as the traditional season opener in April, but will now take place instead on 25 September. The plan is to stage 12 disciplines. A list of athletes who will compete in the Qatari capital will be announced in due course.Annoucement (3 August)

Valencia Half Marathon 2020 - cancelled

The 2020 Medio Marathon Valencia Trinidad Alfonso EDP, scheduled for Sunday 25 October has been cancelled due to the ongoing COVID-19 situation. In a statement, the organisers said: "SD Correcaminos (running club), the organiser of the Valencia Half-Marathon Trinidad Alfonso EDP, after fully appraising the health situation and consulting all the authorities involved, hereby announces the cancellation of the 30th edition of the race. The results of the appraisal and consultation showed that it was impossible to go ahead with the race, which was scheduled for the 25th of October 2020."Announcement (30 July)

Great Ethiopian Run (15 Nov 2020) - postponed

"The 20th edition of TOTAL Great Ethiopian Run International 10km was scheduled to be held on 15 November 2020. However, due to the current situation of Covid-19, we are forced to postpone the race. We will announce the new date on a later date. Please bear with us while we work through the details to deliver the 20th edition of our flagship race."Announcement (27 July)

Nanjing Continental Tour Gold Meeting 2020 - cancelled

Following the decision taken by China's National Administration of Sports to suspend all international sporting events until next year, organisers of the World Athletics Continental Tour Gold meeting in Nanjing have announced that the competition will not go ahead this year.Announcement (25 July)

Shanghai Diamond League (19 Sep 2020) - cancelled

Following the decision taken by the National Administration of Sports to suspend all international sporting events until next year, we are sorry to announce that the 2020 Shanghai Diamond League will not go ahead as planned on 19th September. The meeting will return next year, taking its traditional place as one of the early-season events in the Diamond League calendar.Announcement (24 July)

Müller Grand Prix, Gateshead (12 Sep 2020) - cancelled

The Wanda Diamond League today announced a further change to its 2020 calendar. The Müller Grand Prix in Gateshead, UK, scheduled for 12 September to have been the fifth competitive meeting of the season, has been cancelled.Announcement (23 July)

ISTAF (13 Sep 2020) - confirmed

“With 3500 spectators instead of 45,000, the ISTAF will certainly be different this time, but it may be a first small step back to normal," said meeting director Martin Seeber. "We want to set an example for sport and be a beacon for athletics."Announcement (21 July)

Hamburg Marathon (13 Sep 2020) - cancelled

Major sporting events in Hamburg, which have been postponed until late summer and autumn 2020 due to the Covid-19 pandemic that has been raging since spring 2020, will no longer take place this year, but will be postponed until 2021.Announcement (21 July)

Madrid Half Marathon (4 Oct 2020) - cancelled

"The organisation of the Movistar Madrid Half Marathon and the ProFuturo Race announce the cancellation of the 2020 edition, originally scheduled for 29 March and which, due to the coronavirus health emergency, was postponed to 4 October. The circumstances are still not ideal for the celebration of these two sporting events with a joint participation of close to 20,000 people, and the prospect for the coming months does not offer security guarantees for participants, spectators, volunteers and the organisation team either."Announcement (21 July)

Rotterdam Marathon (was 24-25 Oct 2020, now 10-11 April 2021) - postponed

"With pain in our hearts we have decided to reschedule the event due to the ongoing COVID-19 situation. The NN Marathon Rotterdam is now scheduled to take place on the 10th and 11th of April 2021. Every individual runner with a place in the 2020 edition will be able to use their place in the rescheduled event."Announcement (20 July)

Kagawa Marugame Half Marathon (7 Feb 2021) - cancelled

"The 75th anniversary running of the Kagawa Marugame International Half Marathon scheduled for 7 February 2021 will not take place. After careful consideration we determined that, with no visible end to the coronavirus crisis in sight, for the health and safety of participants, volunteers, staff, medical and rescue personnel, fans along the course and everyone else involved with our event, our 75th running must be postponed for one year."Announcement (20 July)

Meeting Liege (9 Sep 2020) - cancelled

"There will be no 19th edition of the Meeting International d'Athlétisme de la Province de Liège this year. The applicable corona measures meant it is not possible to organise the event properly later this summer. The 19th edition can take place in July 2021 and we are also looking forward to the 20th anniversary of this international event in 2022."Announcement (16 July)

Youth Olympic Games Dakar 2022 - postponed

Senegal and the International Olympic Committee have mutually agreed to postpone the Youth Olympic Games Dakar 2022 to 2026. This postponement meets the requirement of responsibility and the concern for efficiency imposed by current circumstances.Announcement (15 July)

Great Birmingham Run (11 Oct 2020) - cancelled

"There’s no option to stage the event as planned, or at a later date in the year."Announcement (15 July)

Chicago Marathon (11 Oct 2020) - cancelled

Event organisers and the City of Chicago announced the decision to cancel the 2020 Bank of America Chicago Marathon and all race weekend activities in response to the ongoing public health concerns brought on by the coronavirus pandemic.Announcement (13 July)

Toronto Marathon (18 Oct 2020) - cancelled

Working closely with the City of Toronto and Mayor John Tory, event organisers Canada Running Series have made the decision to cancel the event due to Covid-19 related health and safety concerns. "We are pleased to announce that we will be transitioning to a virtual event this year, to continue to offer the best possible running and fundraising goals in these challenging times."Announcement (13 July)

Seiko Golden Grand Prix Tokyo (was 10 May 2020, now 23 Aug 2020) - postponed

Originally set to take place on 10 May, the Seiko Golden Grand Prix – a World Athletics Continental Tour Gold meeting – will now be held on Sunday 23 August. “Only domestic athletes will participate,” read a statement on the meeting’s website. “We are also considering allowing high school athletes to play a role. Details will be announced once they are confirmed.”Announcement (13 July)

(11/02/2020) ⚡AMP
by World Athletics is

Prison inmate helps Utah woman finish marathon

When prison inmate Fidel Ybarra saw Carrie Kelley struggling at the Beaver Canyon Marathon, he ran with her for the next 35K

At the Beaver Canyon Marathon in Beaver, Utah, on October 3, Carrie Kelley started the race looking to finish her 68th marathon. A little later, though, not even 7K into the run, she had already hit a wall, and she was thinking about dropping out. Before she could act on this impulse to quit, a man named Fidel Ybarra appeared from behind Kelley and started to run with her. Ybarra is a prison inmate who was helping out at the marathon that day, and although he was hardly dressed for a run (he was wearing work boots and shorts over long johns), he ran with Kelley for the next 35K.

Amy Albrecht, the race director for the Beaver Canyon Marathon, spoke with after the race, and she said there were several inmates from the Utah Department of Corrections on-site that day to help set up ahead of the run and tear down after. Ybarra had been following behind the racers to clean up the course with the rest of the crew, and his decision to run with Kelley—who was in last place and clearly struggling—surprised everyone.

“Watching the two of them cross together had everyone in tears,” Albrecht said. “It was so moving, and one of the neatest things I have ever seen. I don’t know his past mistakes, but what he did showed his true character.” Albrecht added that the Beaver Canyon team found the address of Ybarra’s mother, and they’ve sent her his medal. “He deserves it for what he did that day.”

After the run, Kelley took to Facebook to explain what had happened during the race. “Without Fidel’s help, I wouldn’t have been able to finish,” she wrote. “I was that broken and injured.” Kelley wrote that Ybarra “isn’t a runner, but he’s one of those people who is a true athlete,” noting that he had no prior training ahead of his spontaneous 22-mile run. “I saw how much pain Fidel was in, but he wouldn’t quit because he didn’t want me to run alone.”

The communications director of the Utah Department of Corrections released a statement from Ybarra, who wrote, “While walking and talking with the deputy that was supervising us, a name came up of a dedicated marathon runner, Carrie Kelley, who was running in the Beaver Canyon Marathon, but due to some injuries she was having a hard time running. She was the last runner and we eventually caught up to her. I am not sure why I began running with her, but I think maybe I saw a little bit of myself and other inmates in the situation. We are normally left at the back and left to our own devices. I could tell how much she enjoyed running, and I felt like I could not let her finish the marathon alone.”

Ybarra said he didn’t plan on running the rest of the marathon with Kelley, but 35K after joining her, he was crossing the finish line by her side. “I feel like by the end I was in more pain than her,” he wrote, “but the feeling of accomplishment was more than I can describe in words.” Kelley and Ybarra finished the race in 6:36:23.

(11/01/2020) ⚡AMP
by Running Magazine

Kagawa Prefecture Qualifier for National High School Ekiden Moved Due to Invasion of Wild Boars

On Oct. 30 the Kagawa Prefecture High School Sports Association announced that the prefectural qualifying race for December's National High School ekiden, originally scheduled for Nov. 1 in Bannosu Park in Sakaide, has been moved to Yashima Rexxam Field in Takamatsu and rescheduled to the 3rd due to an invasion of wild boars at Bannosu Park.

The prefectural qualifying ekiden is held every year on a course starting at Bannosu Park, but on Oct. 28 city officials closed the park when the boars were discovered there. The Prefecture High School Sports Association made the decision to move and reschedule the race in order to ensure the safety of the participating athletes.

The rescheduled race will be run on the 400 m track at Yashima Rexxam Field. Each stage will have one start for all its runners, with the team's time being determined by the sum of the individual times. Girls will run five legs totaling roughly 21 km, while boys will run seven legs totaling approximately 42 km. Due to coronavirus restrictions, only team officials and family members of athletes will be allowed into the stadium to watch the race.

(11/01/2020) ⚡AMP
by Japan Running News

Takaku, Hattori and Kawauchi lead Fukuoka Marathon entries

Organisers of the Fukuoka International Marathon have announced their elite field for the World Athletics Gold Label road race on 6 December.

Given the restrictions on international travel, the line-up is predominantly domestic but it includes some of the top marathon runners in the country, along with a few Japan-based internationals.

Ryu Takaku, who set a big PB of 2:06:45 in Tokyo earlier this year, is the fastest in the field. The 27-year-old is the fourth-fastest Japanese runner ever and will be making his second appearance in Fukuoka, having raced there in 2018.

Yuma Hattori, winner of the 2018 Fukuoka Marathon, will be back in the Japanese city looking for his second victory there. His last race over the distance was at last year’s Marathon Grand Championships, where he finished second to gain selection for Japan’s Olympic team.

Yuki Kawauchi, the 2018 Boston Marathon champion, will be making his 11th appearance in Fukuoka in what will be his 104th career marathon. A prolific racer, Kawauchi's last race over the distance was nine months ago – his longest break between marathons since 2010.

Taku Fujimoto finished second in Fukuoka last year and will be looking to go one better this time round. He set his PB of 2:07:57 when finishing eighth in Chicago in 2018, while earlier this year he clocked 1:00:06 at the Marugame Half Marathon, moving to second on the Japanese all-time list.

Six other men in the field have PBs faster than 2:09.

Leading entries

Ryu Takaku (JPN) 2:06:45

Yuma Hattori (JPN) 2:07:27

Taku Fujimoto (JPN) 2:07:57

Yuki Kawauchi (JPN) 2:08:14

Yuya Yoshida (JPN) 2:08:30

Naoki Okamoto (JPN) 2:08:37

Ser-Od Bat-Ochir (MGL) 2:08:50

Tsukasa Koyama (JPN) 2:08:53

Satoru Sasaki (JPN) 2:08:56

Naoya Sakuda (JPN) 2:08:59

Michael Githae (KEN) 2:09:21

Hayato Sonoda (JPN) 2:09:34

Jo Fukuda (JPN) 2:09:52

Kento Otsu (JPN) 2:10:01

Yoshiki Takenouchi (JPN) 2:10:01

Shohei Otsuka (JPN) 2:10:12

Koki Yoshioka (JPN) 2:10:13

Asuka Tanaka (JPN) 2:10:13

Daichi Kamino (JPN) 2:10:18

Yuichi Yasui (JPN) 2:10:19

Junichi Tsubouchi (JPN) 2:10:19

Ryo Matsumoto (JPN) 2:10:32

Derese Workneh (ETH) 2:10:52

Natsuki Terada (JPN) 2:10:55

Taiga Ito (JPN) 2:10:52

Paul Kuira (KEN) 2:11:58

Silas Kingori (KEN) debut

(11/01/2020) ⚡AMP
by World Athletics

At the age of 37 Sara Hall says that she is enjoying her sport more than ever

She says running has "broken my heart a hundred times," but each moment of heartbreak would have seemed worthwhile as Sara Hall moved into second place on the final straight of this year's London Marathon.

The dramatic finish saw a surging Hall overtake Ruth Chepngetich in a sprint finish having made up 40 seconds in little more than a mile by her husband's calculations.

Her time of two hours, 22 minutes and one second improved her previous personal best by 15 seconds, and her second-place finish made her the first American to mount the podium at London in 14 years.

The performance would have gone some way to atoning for the disappointment of pulling out of the Olympic Marathon Trials in Atlanta earlier this year -- likely one of the heartbreaks she had been referring to as she took to social media after the race.

"This is the highlight of my career so far," Hall tells CNN Sport as she reflects on her London Marathon performance.

Hall crosses the finish line in second place at the London Marathon.

"I feel so, so grateful to be enjoying the sport the most I ever have at age 37. It's been kind of a surprise to still be improving at this age, and I just feel so grateful that I got the opportunity to race.

"It was just a long year of training and faith that there would be an opportunity at the end of it. I put in a lot for this race and to have it all come together and have the race of my life that was just a dream come true."

Running 'completely alone'

The circumstances surrounding this year's London Marathon, which was moved from April to October and staged only elite races due to the coronavirus pandemic, were unique.

Competitors were tested multiple times before traveling and also upon arrival in the UK.

Wearing social distancing devices that would sound if they got too close to another person, athletes stayed in a bubble in a hotel the week leading up to the race with "a little, tiny grass loop" to train on, according to Hall.

For the race itself, each athlete had their own Porta Potti -- "every runner's dream," says Hall, rather than waiting in a long queue before rushing to the start line.

Rather than start in Greenwich in south London and finish in The Mall in the center of the British capital, the course was also altered to 19.6 laps of St James's Park and no crowds were in attendance -- something that posed a significant mental challenge.

"There were times I could just hear the echo of my footsteps out there because I was running completely alone," says Hall.

"I really just had to self-motivate a lot out there because it was a lonely, very quiet run without spectators.

"And I just tried to remember how grateful I was to be competing and (to) have an opportunity in Covid ... and it was really that gratitude that kept me moving forward and then eventually catching people."

(10/31/2020) ⚡AMP

Semenya and Van Niekerk among Athletics South Africa preparatory Olympic squad

Olympic champions Caster Semenya and Wayde van Niekerk are among 43 athletes included in Athletics South Africa’s preparation squad for the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games.

The preparation squad for the rescheduled Games features 32 men and 11 women, while a further 15 sprinters are in consideration for relay teams.

"We believe that we have assembled a very strong squad and we are confident that all the athletes are capable to be part of the final team, but that will be dependent entirely on them," Athletics South Africa President Aleck Skhosana told SuperSport.

"But they will have to stay focused to achieve that as they train in their various disciplines.

"Given the current global challenge caused by the coronavirus pandemic, we encourage athletes to take advantage of every available opportunity for competition because we don’t know what the future holds in terms of the fight against this virus.

"Whether it will get stronger or whether it will be defeated, we don’t know.

"So, we urge athletes to use opportunities at club, provincial or national level to prepare themselves."

Semenya is among the most well-known athletes in the squad.

The double Olympic champion last month lost an appeal to the Swiss Supreme Court over a World Athletics ruling which means she must take testosterone-reducing medication in order to be eligible to compete.

The current rules force athletes with differences in sexual development (DSD) to take drugs to medically reduce their naturally-occurring testosterone if they want to compete in women's events ranging from 400 meters to a mile.

She had previously appealed to the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) over the policy, but was unsuccessful.

The ruling means Semenya is unable to defend her 800m Olympic crown at the postponed Tokyo 2020 Games unless she takes medication.

Earlier this year Semenya expressed an interest in competing in the 200m at Tokyo 2020, an event not covered by the regulations.

Van Niekerk also features in the squad.

He set the 400m world record of 43.03sec when he earned Olympic gold at Rio 2016.

He competed in his first international race in more than three years last month.

Van Niekerk had been recovering from an anterior cruciate ligament injury picked up in 2017.

The preparatory squad also includes long jumper Luvo Manyonga and javelin thrower Sunette Viljoen, who both won silver medals at Rio 2016.

Manyonga won the men’s long jump world title in 2017.

Reigning Commonwealth Games men’s 100m champion Akani Simbine has been touted as a potential medal contender next year and also is included.

(10/31/2020) ⚡AMP
by Michael Pavitt
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. ...


Galen Rupp breezes to victory in a popup half marathon in Lane County

Galen Rupp Runs 60:22, Suguru Osako Runs 61:15 In Half Marathon

Galen Rupp cruised to victory in a special half marathon Friday near Row River in Lane County.

The former University of Oregon star and two-time Olympic medalist finished in 1 hour, 22 seconds, well in front of Japanese Olympian Suguru Osako, who crossed in 1:01:15.

This was Rupp’s first competition since he won the U.S. Olympic Marathon Trials in Atlanta last February.

“It’s been a challenging year for everybody because of COVID,” Rupp said. “I’m so thankful and grateful to have this opportunity just to race. That was my whole mentality coming in here -- get a race in. If it happened that I ran really fast, great.”

The race was set up by the Eugene Marathon. The precise location and start time were kept secret to discourage spectators and stay within Oregon’s coronavirus protocols.

The lack of reliable internet service at the scene prevented the race from being live-streamed. Few details of the action were available while the runners were in the course.

Rupp’s winning time was well short of the U.S. record of 59:43, held by Ryan Hall since 2007. But Rupp’s 10-mile spit of 45:53 betters the U.S. 10-mile record of 46:13 held by Greg Meyer since 1983.

Ian Dobson of the Eugene Marathon said Rupp’s 10-mile time met all record criteria.

“Any time you set a record, it’s a great day,” Rupp said. "I think this technically is my PR (personal record) for a half marathon too. I ran a little quicker in Rome a few years ago, but that wasn’t a record-eligible course.

“Technically I came out with a PR. So, it was a great day. Any time you can do that, you can’t leave disappointed. I would have loved to go faster. It just wasn’t in the cards today.”

(10/31/2020) ⚡AMP

Are carbon-plated shoes causing wipeouts?

After several women went down at the half-marathon world championships, people are wondering if it was the course or the shoes

Two weeks ago, the World Half-Marathon Championships saw a number of wipeouts. In the women’s race, two major contenders went down. First, Joyciline Jepkosgei, one of the fastest women ever over the distance and a favourite to win, tangled shoes with her group of runners and took a fall she couldn’t recover from. She went on to finish sixth in 1:05:58. Defending champion Netsanet Gudeta also fell just before 10K and finished eighth in 1:06:46. Falls happen in running very occasionally on the track, but it’s extremely rare on the road. While some are suggesting the spills can be attributed to the winding course, others think it might be the shoes.

Of the runners who participated in the world championships, 93 per cent of the field was wearing a carbon-plated shoe. While stack heights vary in carbon shoes, across the board they stand taller than historically (except possibly for Hoka One One). Nike stands 40 mm tall, Adidas at 39 mm and New Balance (which is relatively short compared to the others) is 30 mm. 

The course was certainly curvy, with several hairpin turns along the 5K loop, but it’s undeniable that the race would have looked different if Jepkosgei and Gudeta hadn’t fallen. Many have pointed to the fact that these carbon-plated shoes are less stable, particularly on tight turns. 

Outside of price and availability, runners thus far hadn’t had a reason not to buy a pair of carbon-plated shoes. They’re well-designed race footwear that have been touted as aiding running economy and improving recovery, making them highly marketable as the perfect marathon shoe. But what if your perfect marathon shoe didn’t feel stable on a winding course – would you still wear it?

Runners have been wearing carbon-plated shoes for two years now, and we’ve never seen a race with this much stumbling, suggesting that it was, in fact, the course and not the shoes that caused the falling. However, if you’re someone who has poor ankles and you’re racing on a course with some switchbacks, either practice taking these shoes around tight corners to see how you feel, or go for something that feels more stable. 

(10/31/2020) ⚡AMP
by Running Magazine

Mo Farah's preparations for the rescheduled 2020 Olympics next summer could be hampered by a rumoured appearance on a reality TV show, says UK Athletics

Accoridng to reports in the UK media, Farah is set to go in to isolation this week so he can join the cast of the ITV show, before travelling to Gwrych Castle, north Wales, where the latest series is being filmed next month.

The reports also suggest Farah has accepted a £300,000 fee to appear in the show, but UK Athletics are more concerned about how it will affect Farah's training.

“It’s a knife-edge decision,” the UKA chief executive, Jo Coates, said. “For me as a marketer, to have athletes in mainstream TV shows is just perfection. We worked so hard to get netballers into these shows. However – and a big however – you would never want to do that to the detriment of performance.

Farah would join a long list of athletes who took part in the show. Former sprinter Linford Christie, who took home an Olympic gold medal in the 100m in 1992 took part in 2010. Silver medal javelin star Fatima Whitbread, 59, came third in 2011 with hockey star Samantha Quek, 32, coming 4th in 2016.

Swimmer Rebecca Adlington, 31, who won two golds at the Beijing Olympics in 2008, appeared on the show in 2013.

(10/30/2020) ⚡AMP
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. ...


Airtel Delhi Half Marathon on Nov 29, organizers will provide bio-secure zones for elite runners

Some of the world's top runners are expected to take part in the prestigious Airtel Delhi Half Marathon on November 29, with the organizers promising to provide bio-secure zones to ensure a COVID-19 free race for the elite runners.

While the international and Indian elite runners will be at the start line at Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium here, the amateur from across the globe will join them via the exclusive Airtel Delhi Half Marathon Mobile App.

Their participation this year will be from a convenient location, wherever they are.

The World Athletics Gold Label race, recognised by the Assocciation of International Marathons & Distance Races (AIMMS), will have a total prize purse of USD 233,270.

One of the first global sporting events to be hosted by India during the COVID-19 pandemic, Airtel Delhi Half Marathon wa during the COVID-19 pandemic, Airtel Delhi Half Marathon will maintain all mandatory protocols in line with the advisory issued by the Government of India.

Sports Minister Kiren Rijiju said sport has always been a symbol of optimism and he is looking forward to the event.

"We extend our full support to this event that is India's prde and welcome the world's best athletes to our capital city. The Airtel Delhi Half Marathon is representative of a healthier and fitter nation and reinforces the vision of the Fit Fit India movement," he said in a release.

"I would encourage each and every one of you to participate from the safety & security of your own surroundings."

One of the first global sporting events to be hosted by India during the COVID-19 pandemic, Airtel Delhi Half Marathon will maintain all mandatory protocols in line with the advisory issued by the Government of India.

Delhi deputy chief minister Manish Sisodia said, “Over the years, the Airtel Delhi Half Marathon has become an integral part of Delhi’s sporting calendar and an enduring symbol of sporting excellence, philanthropy, health & fitness.

“To watch the finest runners in the world compete on our home ground, will certainly be a boost for the citizens of Delhi and across India. That along with the thousands of amateur runners who participate in this event give us a great opportunity to come together as a community to celebrate the joy of running.”

CAS proceeds with Russian doping case despite COVID-19 spike in Switzerland  

The ADHM is being supported by the Sports Ministry, the Delhi government, Sports Authority of India and Athletics Federation of India.

For this edition, the amateur participants will have the option of running through the race week of November 25 to 29 using ADHM App. A participant would be allowed to run and complete his run any time in this time frame depending on his convenience.

This specialized event App will be launched exclusively with an array of features, including timing and distance tracker, for an enhanced running experience.

(10/30/2020) ⚡AMP
by Sport Star
Airtel Delhi Half Marathon

Airtel Delhi Half Marathon

Ethiopia’s Birhanu Legese and Almaz Ayana took the honours at the Airtel Delhi Half Marathon, crossing the line in the Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium in 59:46 and 1:07:11 respectively to win, world and Olympic 10,000m champion Ayana was making her debut over the half marathon distance but hardly looked like a novice as she led home an Ethiopian clean sweep of...


A body was found in search for missing GB mountain runner Chris Smith

The British international athlete was last seen on Tuesday when he left to go running in Perthshire

A body has been found in the search for GB international mountain runner Chris Smith, who went missing while on a run in Perthshire, Scotland, on Tuesday (October 27).

Police Scotland said that formal identification has yet to take place, but the 43-year-old athlete’s family has been informed.

Smith had left from Invervar to run Meall nan Aighean, Carn Mairg, Meall Garbh and Carn Gorm on Tuesday at 3pm but did not return as expected a couple of hours later.

The discovery of a man’s body was made near to Meall Garbh in the Glenlyon area at around 11:50am on Thursday (October 29).

Thames Valley Harrier Smith has raced at multiple world and European mountain running championships, finishing eighth at the European event in 2013 and 10th at the world event in Wales in 2015.

Police Scotland had been working with local mountain rescue teams, with assistance of the Coastguard helicopter, in the search.

“Enquiries remain ongoing and a report will be submitted to the Procurator Fiscal in due course,” a Police Scotland statement added.

On Thursday a fundraising page was created by Smith’s fellow GB international athlete Marc Scott, raising money for Scottish Mountain Rescue.

(10/29/2020) ⚡AMP
by Athletics Weekly

200 Eversource Hartford Marathon raised hundreds of thousands of dollars for charity at their virtual event

The Eversource Hartford Marathon & Half Marathon typically attracts tens of thousands of runners from around the world.

This year, it was held virtually because of the pandemic, but the event still raised $420,000.

On Wednesday, organizers presented a check to local charities, who need that money now more than ever.

About 5,000 runners took part in the virtual marathon this year.

The top fundraising organization was the Healing Meals Community Project, which raised nearly $170,000.

(10/29/2020) ⚡AMP
by Kaitlyn Naples
Eversource Hartford Marathon

Eversource Hartford Marathon

Be part of the biggest race day in Connecticut. Where runners, families, charities and volunteers come together in an inspiring display of community spirit. Enjoy a top-notch experience, from expo to post-race party: A plethora of resources and expertise. High-energy crowds. Pomp and circumstance filling the streets. Thorough course amenities, including fuel, pacers, security and medical services. Festive celebration with...


2021 Lake Biwa Marathon to Go Ahead Feb. 28

With race after race canceling or postponing, this week the organizers of the Lake Biwa Mainichi Marathon announced plans for next year's 76th running to go ahead on Feb. 28, 2021.

A week earlier that its traditional date due to the Tokyo Marathon's move to March, the planned date comes with the caveat that, "depending on the future situation with regard to COVID-19, there may be changes to the race's operation, including the possibility of cancelation." 

But with that said, it looks like the organizers plan no additional restrictions on their event's field beyond the normal qualifying times and requirement for national federation approval.

In that past that has typically meant a field of under 200 finishers from Japan and abroad. For the domestic field, with no Beppu-Oita or Tokyo Marathon there's sure to be record-setting depth. as between Beppu-Oita, Tokyo and Lake Biwa this year 29 men went sub-2:10 and 50 sub-2:12.

For international men, if it actually happens Lake Biwa will be one of the only elite spring marathons in the world. In contrast to the 2020 Fukuoka International Marathon and 2021 Nagoya Women's Marathon, both of which restricted their fields to those already in Japan, Lake Biwa appears to be open to any internationals who meet the standards, have federation approval, and are willing to make the trip. 

At the moment immigration restrictions would prevent that from being an easy option for most nationalities, but as it works on its athlete COVID protocols for the Tokyo Olympics it's quite possible that changes to Japan's policies could open the door to a legit international field at Lake Biwa. With the race's application deadline standing at Dec. 31 there's just over 2 months for those changes to happen one direction or the other.

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

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

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

(10/29/2020) ⚡AMP
by Brett Larner


The Lake Biwa Mainichi Marathon held in Otsu, Shiga, is one of the prominent Japanese marathon races of the year. It is a male-only competition and has IAAF Gold Label status. It was first held in 1946 and, having taken place every year since then, it is Japan's oldest annual marathon race. The early editions of the race were held...


Michael Githae will spearhead Kenya's hopes for victory at the Fukuoka Marathon scheduled for December 6 in Japan

Githae has a personal best of 2:09:21 and will have Paul Kiura (2:11:38) and Silas Kingori, who is making his debut, for company.

Kenya has a superb record in the event with former world marathon record holder, Patrick Makau winning twice and Martin Mathathi, Joseph Ndambiri and Samuel Wanjiru winning once each.

Japan will be well represented by Ryu Takaku, who set a big PB of 2:06:45 in Tokyo earlier this year. He is the fastest in the field. The 27-year-old is the fourth-fastest Japanese runner ever and will be making his second appearance in Fukuoka, having raced there in 2018.

Yuma Hattori, winner of the 2018 Fukuoka Marathon, will be back in the Japanese city looking for his second victory. His last race over the distance was at last year’s Marathon Grand Championships, where he finished second to gain selection in Japan’s Olympic team.

Yuki Kawauchi, the 2018 Boston Marathon champion, will be making his 11th appearance in Fukuoka in what will be his 104th career marathon. A prolific racer, Kawauchi's last race over the distance was nine months ago— his longest break between marathons since 2010.

Taku Fujimoto finished second in Fukuoka last year and will be looking to go one better this time round. He set his PB of 2:07:57 when finishing eighth in Chicago in 2018 while earlier this year, he clocked 1:00:06 at the Marugame Half Marathon, moving to second on the Japanese all-time list. Six other men in the field have PBs faster than 2:09.


(10/29/2020) ⚡AMP
by William Njuguna
Fukuoka Marathon

Fukuoka Marathon

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


Kenya's Amos Kipruto focused on Valencia Marathon

The 2019 World Athletics Championships marathon bronze medalist Amos Kipruto is intent on improving his personal best time even in a season adversely affected by the Covid-19 pandemic.

He will get another chance to attempt on lowering his personal mark of 2 hours 5 minutes 43 seconds when he races in the Valencia Marathon on December 6.

Kipruto has been fine-tuning for race in Kapsabet, Nandi County for several months now after his 18th placed finish in the Tokyo Marathon in March in a time of 2:08:00.

In an interview with Nation Sport, Kipruto said he was in good shape when he went to Japan for the Tokyo race but complications arose as he was running which slowed him down.

“It has been a challenging year and for me it started when I competed in the Tokyo Marathon. I had some calf muscle problem. I was disappointed to finish 18th,  but that is now gone and I am focused on doing well in Valencia and also going for a PB.”

“Being selected for the race is humbling and I must say I’m lucky because many athletes are at home and have not been able to compete,” said Kipruto.

According to Kipruto, the lineup looks tough with many Ethiopian athletes in the mix who have registered faster times than him.

(10/29/2020) ⚡AMP
by Bernard Rotich

Galen Rupp and Suguru Osako are aiming for a fast half marathon on Friday near Eugene

Olympians Galen Rupp and Suguru Osako have signed on for what is expected to be a blazingly fast half marathon Friday at an undisclosed location in Lane County.

Eugene Marathon has set up the course and ensured it is certified. Organizers are declining to reveal the course’s location or time in deference to the coronavirus pandemic. All participants have been tested for the virus.

Rupp won the men’s race at 2020 U.S. Olympic Marathon Trials last February in Atlanta. The former University of Oregon star is the 2012 Olympic silver medalist in the 10,000 meters and the 2016 Olympic bronze medalist in the marathon. He holds the U.S. record for the 10,000.

Osako is the Japanese record-holder in the marathon, as well as the 3,000 and 5,000 meters.

The two runners are former teammates with the now defunct Nike Oregon Project. Both are based in Portland, although Osako has been training in Flagstaff, Arizona.

“Galen called me maybe a month ago,” said Pete Julian, Osako’s coach. "He asked if Suguru would be interested in throwing down somewhere in Oregon in this time frame.

“I was like, ‘Galen, you called at the perfect time. That’s exactly what we want to do.'”

Rupp has not raced since winning in Atlanta. Osako was active with Julian’s group in track races over the summer. He had begun training for December’s Honolulu Marathon before that was canceled because of the coronavirus pandemic.

“I think they’re pretty lined up,” Julian said of the two runners. “Galen hasn’t raced in a long time. But he is old enough and wise enough now that if he says wants to run a good, hard, fast half marathon, you have to believe he is ready to go. I know Suguru is ready to go. It will be cool.”

The course is said to be flat. And if the race is fast, well, the U.S. record for a half marathon of 59 minutes, 43 seconds has been held by Ryan Hall since 2007. The Japanese half-marathon record is of 1:00.00 was set earlier this year by Yusuke Ogura.

Julian wouldn’t call Friday’s race a record attempt.

“Hey, man, 13.1 miles is a long way to go,” Julian said. “It’s almost foolish to say we’re targeting something because I know nothing about the course. My assumption is if the weather is nice, it’s warm enough and it’s not windy, and you have two guys like that, running around an hour for a half marathon is certainly within their capabilities.”

Eugene Marathon will be posting more details on its Twitter and Instagram accounts as the race nears. On Friday, organizers will use those platforms to provide updates on the progress of the competition.

(10/28/2020) ⚡AMP
by Ken Goe

Joshua Cheptegei's world 5000m record of 12:35.36 set at the Wanda Diamond League in Monaco on August 14 has been ratified

The Ugandan, now 24, took two seconds off Kenenisa Bekele’s mark of 12:37.35, set 16 years earlier in Hengelo. Amazingly, it was Cheptegei’s first race since setting a world 5km record on the roads on 16 February, also in Monaco.

Paced through the early stages by Roy Hoornweg (2:31.87 at 1000m) and Matthew Ramsden (5:03.77 at 2000m), Cheptegei, the reigning world cross country and 10,000m champion, took up the running at half way and continued the metronomic pace, churning out 61-second laps. He passed through 3000m in 7:35.14 and then upped the pace slightly with a 2:30 fourth kilometre.

Having left the rest of the field way behind, he maintained his tempo and eked out another 2:30 split for the final kilometre, bringing him to the finish line in 12:35.36 after a 59.64 final lap.

With his season cut short by the Covid-19 pandemic, Cheptegei made no secret of his ambitions to take down's Bekele's record which had stood since the rising star was seven years old, and targeted precisely that in Monaco.

After the race Cheptegei revealed: “It took a lot of mind setting to keep being motivated this year because so many people are staying at home but you have to stay motivated. I pushed myself, I had the right staff with me, the right coach. I'm also usually based in Europe, but being based in Uganda with my family was actually great.

“If you believe in something, anything is possible," he continued. "Breaking a record was something really difficult, but when you know the right way, it’s not difficult anymore. So, the next challenge is to go chase one or two more world records. I would be the happiest person in the world.”

On 7 October in Valencia, in his third race of the year, Cheptegei shattered the world record in the 10,000m, clocking 26:11.00, a performance which is now awaiting ratification.

(10/28/2020) ⚡AMP

The 2021 Boston Marathon will not be held in April but hopefully in the fall

The Boston Athletic Association (B.A.A.) has announced that the 125th Boston Marathon, traditionally held on the third Monday in April—Patriots’ Day in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts—will be postponed until at least the fall of 2021. The B.A.A., which has been meeting regularly with its COVID-19 Medical & Event Operations Advisory Group to determine when and how the Boston Marathon can be held again, will begin working with local, city, and state officials, sponsors, organizing committee members, and other stakeholders to determine if a fall 2021 date is feasible.

“With fewer than six months until Patriots’ Day and with road races prohibited until Phase 4 of the Massachusetts reopening plan, we are unable to host the Boston Marathon this coming April,” said Tom Grilk, C.E.O. of the B.A.A. “By shifting our focus to a fall date, we can continue to work with stakeholders to adjust the in-person experience for runners and supporters alike. Prioritizing the safety of participants, volunteers, spectators, and community members, we continue to assess all elements of the race including a potential reduced field size or weekend date.”

No 2021 date has been selected, however, the B.A.A. will work with local, city, and state officials and members of its COVID-19 Medical & Event Operations Advisory Group to establish under what conditions the next live, in-person Boston Marathon can occur. Before the end of the year, the B.A.A. seeks to announce a new date. Other details such as when registration may open and the field size, pending local regulations and the event plan, will also be forthcoming. Information regarding other 2021 B.A.A. events, including the B.A.A. 5K, B.A.A. 10K, and B.A.A. Half Marathon, will be announced at a later date.

“We are optimistic that the Boston Marathon will continue its tradition of celebrating the spirit of community and athletic excellence next fall. We know there will be many questions and we will look to address them in the coming months ahead,” Grilk said.

The 2020 Boston Marathon, originally scheduled for April 20, was held as a ten-day Virtual Experience after being canceled due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

(10/28/2020) ⚡AMP
Boston Marathon

Boston Marathon

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


2020 Grandma’s Marathon race t-shirts were donated to people in need

Grandma's marathon has managed to take a not-so-great situation and use it for good.

The organization has donated More than 150 boxes full of race t-shirts that didn't go to runners. That's about 10-thousand items that will be heading to Haiti to benefit those in need.

"Wow I was just surprised. Here we are at Advantage Emblem and they have all these t-shirts that they are giving to Orphan Grain Train," said Pastor Tom Brinkley of St. Matthews Church. "They were so nice and I realize how difficult that is not being able to run the race and having this stuff but what a blessing it's been to us."

"When we ship stuff, we don't just ship it randomly. There has to be an organization in place," said Eugene Pasche of Orphan Grain Train. "So it doesn't just go to a port there and sit there like when there is a natural disaster. With a destination and a person there to get it, it moves quite fast."

The donation was made with help from "Orphan Grain Train" and St. Matthews Lutheran Church in Esko.

(10/28/2020) ⚡AMP
by Kelly Hinseth
Grandmas Marathon

Grandmas Marathon

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


Adidas' ownership of the Reebok brand may be coming to an end, according to a report from Manager Magazine today

According to the German publication, the Three Stripes has already assembled an internal team to potentially reach a deal to sell the company by March 2021.

Two names have emerged as potential suitors of acquiring the brand:  China's Anta Sports and the VF Corporation, the latter of which owns outdoor apparel and footwear brands including Timberland, Vans, and The North Face.

Since taking over as CEO of Adidas in 2016, Kasper Rorsted has repeatedly stated that the brand has no intention of selling Reebok off, despite demands from investors to do so in 2017.

In Adidas' Q2 2020 earnings report, the company reported that Reebok revenues were down 42 percent due to its large presence to the U.S. market in the midst of the coronavirus pandemic. Adidas bought Reebok in August 2005 for $3.8 billion.

When reached for inquiry, Adidas cited its company policy to not comment on market rumors. 

(10/28/2020) ⚡AMP
by Victor Deng

Kolt Codner runs his first marathon around hospital for 4-year-old son with cancer

There were two thoughts pushing Kolt Codner forward in his first marathon race: his 4-year-old son Andrew's fight against cancer and the hospital that provides him care.

Codner, of Poland, Ohio, ran 26.2 miles around Akron Children's Hospital on October 17 to raise money for the hospital treating his son, who has 26 months left in his treatment.

In early May, Codner and his wife Tristan received a phone call that Andrew had a bed waiting for him in the hematology and oncology unit of the hospital.

A day that began as a visit to the pediatrician for Andrew's swollen face had resulted in a diagnosis of acute lymphoblastic leukemia, a common childhood cancer.

Codner's run served to show his appreciation to the hospital staff that has turned a traumatic experience like cancer treatment into one his young son faces bravely, Codner says.

"The folks at Akron Children's have taken something that should be scary and terrifying and made it this amazing badge of honor to recognize the superhero that he is," Codner told CNN. "We couldn't think of a better thing to contribute to and spend time trying to help raise funds to ensure that all kids have access to the same amazing experience as Andrew has had at Akron Children's."

Codner participated in the race as part of the virtual FirstEnergy Akron Marathon, Half Marathon & Team Relay, which replaced the hospital's yearly marathon due to the coronavirus pandemic. According to the virtual marathon guidelines, runners can race at any location or pace, and Codner decided to run his marathon around the hospital to spotlight their work.

On the day of the race, Codner wrote Andrew's name on the top of his running shoes to keep him motivated. Friends and family were stationed outside the hospital to cheer him on, in a course that took 5 hours and 35 laps to complete. His son was even able to run with him across the finish line and award him a medal.

"To see him running and doing that last lap with me was just incredible," Codner said.

By the end of the run, Codner had raised 10 times more than his initial goal of $1,000, according to a hospital press release. The fund has reached over $13,000 in donations and has expanded its window until November 30.

Dr. Megan Sampson, a pediatric oncologist who has treated Andrew at the hospital, praises the Codner family.

"It just amazed me that during this scary time that he was thinking about doing this," said Sampson, referring to Codner's run and the attention he has drawn to the hospital's work.

Andrew's prognosis is good and he's responding well to the treatment he has received, but he still has a long way to go, Sampson says.

(10/28/2020) ⚡AMP
by Kelsie Smith
Akron Marathon Race Series

Akron Marathon Race Series

The marquee event of the Akron Children’s Hospital Akron Marathon Race Series, the Akron Marathon, Half Marathon, & Team Relay presented by First Energy receives a fresh new look ! Runners will experience an unforgettable start inside the historic grounds of Stan Hywet Hall & Gardens before taking an exclusive foot tour of the City of Akron. The Goodyear Half...


Former world half marathon champions Geoffrey Kamworor and Paul Tergat have said fast-rising Kibiwott Kandie could be the next big thing in distance running

Kandie claimed silver on his maiden appearance for Kenya in the World Half Marathon Championships on Saturday in Gdynia, Poland, losing the battle to Uganda’s teenager Jacob Kiplimo in the last kilometers.

“Kandie has a better and bright future. All he needs to do is to remain consistent and to observe self-discipline,” Kamworor who did not travel to Poland to defend his title owing to injury from a road accident, said. He said Kandie did well in Saturday’s race and was perhaps let down by inexperience.

He said Kandie, who looked strong in the race, could have easily won had he made a decisive move after the 15km.

Kamworor returned to training late, having recovered from injuries sustained from a freak accident on June 25 this year.

“I have recovered well and will be back soon. I really wanted to be in Gdynia but I couldn’t,” said Kamworor, who won the 2014 (Copenhagen), 2016 (Cardiff) and 2018 (Valencia) editions of the World Half Marathon. 

Kiplimo won in 58:49, erasing Kamworor’s championship record time of 59:08 from Valencia.  National Cross-country champion Kandie finished second in 58:54.

Peres Jepchirchir recaptured the women’s title she won for the first time in 2018 Valencia not only in a championship record but also women’s only half marathon world record of 1:05:16.

Tergat, who became the first man to successfully defend his World Half Marathon title, said running below one hour in three races in a year is a sign of a great athletics potential.

Tergat won the 2000 Veracruz event in Mexico after his previous exploits in 1999 in Palermo, Italy.

“Kandie ran a good race, occasionally pushing. We could have missed out on the podium if he didn’t do that. I really don’t know why his colleagues faded away in the race,” said Tergat, who was impressed by Jepchirchir’s fighting spirit. He said the performance points to a good performance by Kenyan women at the 2020 Tokyo Olympics.

Tergat cautioned Kenyans about the threat posed by Ugandan athletes, whom he referred to as ‘brothers from another mother.’

(10/28/2020) ⚡AMP
by Ayumba Ayodi

Christian Coleman will miss the Olympic Games in Tokyo next year after the world 100m champion was banned for two years after two missed drugs tests and a filing failure in 2019

Coleman had disputed one of the missed tests, saying he had been out Christmas shopping but had returned during the one-hour window required to be tested. But an athletics disciplinary panel rejected the sprinter’s explanation and banned him until 13 May 2022.

The 24-year-old American earns close to a seven-figure salary from his sponsors at Nike and in July issued a lengthy defence of his actions, saying he was Christmas shopping “five minutes away” and should have been telephoned by testers “who didn’t even bother to call me”.

“I think the attempt on 9 December was a purposeful attempt to get me to miss a test,” he said. “I’ve been contacted by phone literally every other time I’ve been tested – why would the AIU tell him not to call me?”

However, the disciplinary panel ruled that testers were under no obligation to “invite an athlete to come for testing”.

“The athlete’s evidence was that he was out Christmas shopping, though he stated that he arrived home shortly before the end of the one-hour period because he recalled watching the kick-off of the Monday night football game, which starts at 8.15pm.

“His case was that the doping control officer must have left slightly before the end of the 60-minute time slot and he must have just missed him.”

Shopping receipts show that the athlete was shopping at least from 7.13pm, also purchased a Chipotle at 7.53pm and finally purchased 16 items from a Walmart Super Centre at 8.22pm. “The athlete’s evidence was that he returned home briefly some time between 8 and 8.10pm, ate his Chipotle while watching the kick off and then went out again. We do not accept the athlete’s evidence.”

The tester was there at his gated community residence from 7.15pm to 8.15pm, also taking a picture at 8.21pm to confirm the time.

A statement from the Athletics Integrity Unit, posted on social media, said: “The disciplinary panel has upheld the AIU’s charge and banned sprinter Christian Coleman of the USA for two years for three whereabouts failures in 12 months.”

Coleman is yet to comment but has always insisted that he has never used performance-enhancing drugs.

(10/27/2020) ⚡AMP
by Athletics
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. ...


World marathon record holder Eliud Kipchoge says that he will be back in big way

Olympics marathon champion Eliud Kipchoge is still recovering from the London Marathon setback in which he finished eighth on October 4.

“I will take time to recover from the London Marathon loss. I’m healing, I want to move on and focus on the future,” he said on Thursday after touring the Isuzu D-Max Pick-up assembly line in Nairobi.

The world marathon record holder, who had won 10 consecutive marathons since 2014 before this year's London debacle on October 4 in which a blocked ear thwarted his bid for a fifth title, signed a new partnership agreement with Isuzu East Africa that will run until after 2020 Tokyo Olympics that were postponed to next year. 

Kipchoge has been the Isuzu D-Max Pick-up ambassador for the last three years.

On Thursday, Isuzu East Africa hosted the legendary athlete who affirmed his commitment to making a comeback in the races ahead.

“If you despair, you lose what you have built over many years and miss future opportunities to come back stronger and better. If you train harder and build strength, you go to the track and run another race and rely on the strength you have built to propel you to another victory,” Kipchoge, who turns 36 on November 5, said.

He enjoys the use of a fully serviced luxury automatic Isuzu D-Max Pick-up in addition to two other vehicles that he was awarded for winning the 2018 Berlin Marathon in a world record time of two hours, one minute and 39 seconds, and for running under two-hours at the INEOS 1:59 Challenge in Vienna, Austria last year.

Isuzu East Africa Managing Director Rita Kavashe said that Kipchoge has been a reliable and dependable Isuzu D-Max brand ambassador. 

“Through his record setting exploits, he has inspired a lot of people to believe in themselves and pursue their dreams,” she said.

Kipchoge thanked Isuzu for its demonstration of confidence in his capabilities and for supporting his dream.

Under the new deal, Isuzu East Africa will work with the Eliud Kipchoge Foundation to uplift the well-being of community through access to education, sports talent development and environmental conservation.

(10/27/2020) ⚡AMP
by Geoffrey Anene
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. ...


Olympic and world medalist Taoufik Makhloufi of Algeria, linked to gym bag of drug paraphernalia

Taoufik Makhloufi of Algeria is being investigated for ties to a gym bag filled with drug paraphernalia found at INSEP, a French track and field training center.

The four-time Olympic medalist and, most recently, 2019 world championships silver medalist in the 1,500m had personal documentation found in a sports bag filled with syringes and products for injection.

He’s now being investigated by French authorities to see if the bag is connected with him and if his possible possession constitutes an offence. Makhloufi rose to running fame in 2012 when he broke onto the scene by winning the Olympic gold medal in the 1,500m.

At the time, he was coached by Jama Aden, who was at the centre of a 2016 drug raid in Barcelona, which found EPO at the hotel he and his athletes were staying in. Makhloufi had left the group by the time the raid occurred. 

According to the CCES (Canadian Centre for Ethics in Sport), runners can be banned for the presence, possession or use of a prohibited substance for two to four years. Makhloufi hasn’t recorded any results in 2020. His last result on the track was his 1,500m final in Doha. 

(10/27/2020) ⚡AMP
by Madeleine Kelly

2020 Cardiff Half Marathon postponed again, until October 2021 due to coronavirus pandemic

The Cardiff Half Marathon - already postponed from this October to next March - has been put back again.

The next edition of the race will now take place on Sunday, October 3, 2021.

Organizers had hoped to hold two half-marathons next year - the postponed event in March and then another as usual in October.

However, they say rising Covid-19 cases and new lockdown restrictions mean it will not be possible to hold an event like this in March.

The initial decision to move the race from October 2020 to March 2021 had been taken in June.

The next two races will now be in October 2021 and October 2022.

Organizer Run 4 Wales said it had been closely monitoring the ongoing coronavirus situation and the guidance issued by the Welsh and UK governments, whilst making arrangements to try and deliver a Covid-secure event in the spring of 2021 but that this was no longer a viable possibility.

"We had watched with optimism over recent months as lockdown restrictions had eased and successful pilot events across the UK have demonstrated that it is possible to safely deliver mass-participation events," said a statement announcing the latest postponement.

"It is now clear, however, against a backdrop of rising cases, freshly imposed lockdown restrictions and a turbulent winter period ahead that it will not be possible to deliver an event of this size and scale by March of next year."

Run 4 Wales now plans to deliver a number of smaller events with additional hygiene and social distancing measures in place, as it builds to the return of the Cardiff Half Marathon in October 2021.

"The health and safety of our runners, volunteers, event team and the wider population is of the utmost importance to us. We have therefore been working closely with the Welsh Government and other mass participation event organizers across Wales and the UK to chart a safe return to events."

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

It typically sees more than £4m raised for charities and last year 27,500 runners and 100,000 spectators attended the race.

(10/27/2020) ⚡AMP
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...


Ryu Takaku, Yuma Hattori and Taku Fujimoto Headline Fukuoka International Marathon

With strict limitations on immigration still a reality in Japan, the Dec. 6 Fukuoka International Marathon has announced an almost entirely domestic field of less than 100 that includes only five Japan-based foreign-born athletes plus an all-Japan-based Kenyan pacing crew led by Bedan Karoki (Toyota).

Not that the field is hurting for quality. Ryu Takaku (Yakult), 2:06:45 in Tokyo this year, 2018 Fukuoka winner and Tokyo Olympics marathon team member Yuma Hattori (Toyota), and Taku Fujimoto (Toyota), a bump up to the 2019 Fukuoka winner's position pending after the subsequent suspension of the Moroccan who crossed the line first for biological passport violations, make up the front end of a field that includes eleven current sub-2:10 men and seven of last year's top ten.

Hattori has said publicly that he'll be going for Suguru Osako's 2:05:29 national record, and with pacing support from teammates Karoki and Fujimoto, his former Toyo University teammate Takaku there with him, and no dirty athletes to effortlessly tear him in half at the end, if the weather is good his chances will be too.

Shizuoka-based Kenyan Michael Githae (Suzuki) is the top international in the field with a best of 2:09:21 from Lake Biwa in 2018, but sub-60 half marathoner Paul Kuira (JR Higashi Nihon) still has potential to improve on his 2:11:58 best, and likewise for former Takushoku University ekiden team captain Derese Workneh (Hiramatsu Byoin). Workneh's teammate Cyrus Kingori (Hiramatsu Byoin) looks promising in his debut with a 1:01:31 for 4th at last year's Gifu Seiryu Half. 

One promising name for a breakthrough in the Japanese field is Taiki Suzuki (Raffine), 9th last year in 2:12:09 in his marathon debut. It'll be interesting as well to see if Yuya Yoshida (GMO) can build on his inspiring at-the-time-career-ending 2:08:30 debut at Beppu-Oita this year, and it still feels like Olympic team alternate Shohei Otsuka (Kyudenko) has more waiting in him than his 2:10:12 best from Beppu-Oita two years ago.

Toyo fans will be hoping the same for Keita Shitara (Hitachi Butsuryu), twin brother of former NR holder Yuta Shitara.

(10/26/2020) ⚡AMP
by Brett Larner
Fukuoka Marathon

Fukuoka Marathon

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


Uganda´s Joshua Cheptegei to rest for a month before chasing Olympic dream

Joshua Cheptegei will rest for a month before he starts preparations for the next season."It has been hectic. I want to rest a bit before I prepare for what could be an even more challenging 2021," stated Cheptegei.

The cross-country season begins next month climaxing in March before the track season whose highlight will be the Tokyo Olympics in August.

Rest makes a lot of sense after a season where the Ugandan star has broken three world records.But there are signs of an equally tough upcoming season where Cheptegei will be eyeing a historic 5000 and 10000 meter Olympic double.

"Of course I will be going for double gold in Tokyo," stated Cheptegei from Kapchorwa today.

For now, Stephen Kiprotich is the only Ugandan to have won gold at both the Olympics and World Championships.

Should Cheptegei realize this dream he will become the first Ugandan to soar to such heights.

2016 Olympic 5000 and 10000m gold medals.

Olympic gold is the only medal so far missing in Cheptegei's now rich collection.Victory in Tokyo will not only make Cheptegei one of Africa's greatest athletes,  but also Uganda's most successful ever.

(10/26/2020) ⚡AMP
by James Bakama

Triathlete Richard Murray runs 28:04, third-fastest 10K in South African history

On Saturday, Olympic triathlete Richard Murray of South Africa ran a solo 10K time trial in a blazing-fast time of 28:04. This is not only the 13th-fastest time of 2020, but it’s also the third best in South African history.

The run is unofficial, so Murray’s name won’t be added to any record books, but if he ever chooses to drop the swim and the bike and focus solely on running, it looks like he would have a good shot at officially breaking some South African records. 

Murray’s 10K 

Running in the Netherlands, Murray had the perfect course for a flat and fast 10K time trial. The weather was not on his side, though, and he had to endure heavy winds throughout the run. In a YouTube video documenting his time trial, Murray said he hoped to run 2:48 per kilometer for the two-lap 10K course, and he ended up hitting that pace goal right on.

Later in the video, Murray’s wife and fellow Olympic triathlete Rachel Klamer said she wasn’t sure if her husband would be able to meet his low-28 goal, but she added that if he did, she would encourage him to “go and train for it properly” next year after they race at the Tokyo Olympics to see if he could break 28 minutes. 

His 10K time puts him just outside the top-10 for 2020, and he’s impressively close to that 28-minute barrier. With the result, he only trails compatriots Shadrack Hoff (who has a 27:50 PB) and national record-holder Stephen Mokoka (PB of 27:38) on the all-time list of South Africans. Mokoka’s 10K time is much faster than Murray’s new PB, but if Murray put in dedicated run training like Klamer suggested, he could certainly challenge that South African record. 

This is not Murray’s first noteworthy solo time trial result. Earlier in October, he rode his bike for a two-hour workout and immediately followed it up with a mile PB of 4:05, and in May, he ran a 5K PB of 13:48. Had the 5K run been in an official race, it would be good enough for second all-time among South Africans, and Murray would once again be behind Hoff, who owns the national record of 13:30.

At the Rio Games in 2016, Murray ran his way through the field after the swim and bike legs, posting a 30:34 10K for the fastest run split of the day and a fourth-place finish. He is routinely among the top finishers in World Triathlon Series events, and while he’ll have his eyes on a podium result in Tokyo next summer, we’re more eager to see how quickly he can run after a run-specific training block. 

(10/26/2020) ⚡AMP
by Ben Snider-McGrath

2020 World Athletics Awards will be virtually

This year's finest athletics achievements will be celebrated at the World Athletics Awards 2020, to be staged as a virtual event on Saturday 5 December and streamed live on the World Athletics YouTube channel.

This year’s ceremony will recognize exceptional achievement in what has been an extraordinary and unprecedented year, both on and off the fields of play, and a celebration of the athletes who met the challenges of 2020 head-on to produce some of the finest performances in the history of our sport.

Once again, athletics fans from around the world will be invited to help select the male and female athletes of the year.

Commenting on the Award, World Athletics President Sebastian Coe said: “In a disruptive year our athletes continued to train hard and our event organizers went above and beyond to deliver four full Diamond League events and four Diamond League exhibition meetings, seven Continental Tour events, a World Half Marathon Championships and a number of innovative virtual events including the Ultimate Garden Clash. Whilst this was not the year any of us had planned for, I am proud of our athletes, our meeting organizers and the World Athletics team for their tenacity and determination. This is what we will celebrate at this year’s Annual Awards.”

Eight awards, including those in three new categories, will be presented:

Male and Female Athlete of the YearThese awards recognize the top-performing athletes of the year. A three-way voting process – split between the World Athletics Council, the World Athletics Family, and the worldwide community of athletics fans – will determine the five men and five women finalists.

The nominees for Male Athlete of the Year will be announced on Monday 2 November and the nominees for Female Athlete of the Year on Tuesday 3 November.

President’s AwardThis award recognizes and honors exceptional service to athletics.

Coaching Achievement AwardGiven to a coach who has helped athletes thrive, particularly in this difficult year.

Covid Inspiration AwardThis award will recognize an individual or group of individuals whose efforts, despite the challenges of 2020, have resulted in the delivery of a particularly inspiring athletics event or experience.

Member Federations AwardLike the Covid Inspiration Award, this honor will recognize a member federation that has managed to deliver an uplifting athletics event, development event or experience in spite of this year’s challenges.

Athletes Community AwardA special award from the athletes to a group of individuals who have helped and supported them and their communities throughout trying times.

Athletics Photograph of the YearAwarded to the best athletics photograph of 2020, as decided by an expert panel of judges.  The voting process for the Athlete of the Year awards will open next week. 

(10/26/2020) ⚡AMP
by World Athletics

Tommy Hughes breaks 60 plus world marathon record by over six minutes

"I am delighted with a new world marathon record for 60 plus age group," says Ireland's Tommy Hughes.   He clocked 2 hours 30 minutes 2 seconds beating the old record of 2 hours 36 minutes and 30 seconds set in 2009 at Oita marathon (Japan) by Yoshihisa Hosaka (Japan)

"Thanks very much to ChampionChip Ireland for putting on this event for me to try and achieve it. It was 14 and a half laps around Down Royal and the windy conditions were tough. Thanks to my son Eoin and our new running club (Strive Racing Club) for the great pacing."

His halfway split was 1:14:32.  Tommy is 60-years-old.  

(10/25/2020) ⚡AMP

Running is the best strategy for staying productive while WFH

Working from home is hard. Running helps—a lot.  At least it helps me. I don’t presume to advise anyone, but I’m willing to tell my story when asked. (And I was asked by my editor.) As a devoted runner for many years, I’m finding it more valuable than ever during the pandemic.

I’m not an elite runner. I’ve never run a marathon. My routine—subject to disruption, like all routines—is five miles before breakfast, six days a week. No more, no less. I’m not fast. On a flat route that run takes me 44 minutes, which is pretty pokey.

Here’s what I’ve found: On days that I run, my mind is sharper, my mood is sunnier, and my judgment is sounder. I have more energy, not less. All of that is in line with the extensive research on the benefits of exercise. I’ve also found a benefit you don’t read much about: Because I’m burning a lot of calories—not just while running, but also because running speeds up one’s metabolism through the day—I can eat a lot without gaining weight. And I really like eating.

I’m finding the benefits even greater in the pandemic because working from home increases the risks of becoming depressed, bored, and whatever is the clinical term for stir-crazy. Running gets me out of the house, which might not otherwise be necessary for days. I run outdoors in virtually all weather, and as a National Outdoor Leadership School instructor was quoted as saying, “Everyone is happier outdoors.” In the semi-rural area where I live I rarely see other humans on my run, but I do see deer, foxes, owls, black squirrels, and wild turkeys. Just experiencing a world outside my home and my head is beneficial, and in this pandemic you can go a long time without experiencing such a world.

The benefits of running in the pandemic may be far greater than the ones I can feel. Researchers from the University of Arizona note that while exercise is beneficial in many ways, what may be especially valuable “during this pandemic is its ability to both enhance immune defense and mitigate the deleterious effects of stress on immunity.” Specifically, “there is evidence that exercise can protect the host from many types viral infection.” Their conclusion: “It is imperative that we strive to maintain recommended exercise levels during this Covid-19 pandemic.”

Sometimes, when the crush of work is especially heavy, I skip my run for a day or two or three. I usually wonder in retrospect if I saved any time. Running jump-starts my brain, so I’ve typically done a good deal of work by the time I get home. I write and edit articles in my head. But when I don’t run, my brain doesn’t wake up until an hour after the rest of me.

Runners do hurt themselves, but even that can have a silver lining if it forces me to make changes with long-term benefits. In the spring I was running a hilly course, which punishes the knees and hips. When I started to hurt, I altered the course to eliminate some of the hills and focused on improving my form. (Key thoughts: Emphasize the arch in the lower back and look ahead, not down at the road.) Today my posture is better than it has ever been—and feels better—all day long.

Research says most of the physical benefits I get from running 30 miles a week are not much greater than if I ran 10 miles a week. But research also shows that while exercise may yield diminishing returns, it never entirely stops helping. Cleveland Clinic findings from 2018 showed that there is no ceiling on the benefits of exercise.

Frankly, I don’t care much about the findings. The benefits from running that I can feel are good enough. Now more than usual, I’m grateful I can do it.

(10/25/2020) ⚡AMP

Karl Meltzer extends 100-miler victory streak to 19 straight years

With 43 total wins in 100-milers (plus multiple top finishes in other races), Meltzer is one of the best ever at the distance

American runner Karl Meltzer took the win at last weekend’s No Business 100 in Tennessee, crossing the finish line in 19 hours and 44 minutes. Meltzer, 52, has been on the elite ultramarathon scene for quite a while—more than 20 years, in fact. To remain a top contender for that long is impressive enough, but Meltzer ups the ante season after season and continues to win races. With his most recent win, he has officially won a 100-miler in 19-consecutive years, bringing his career total to 43 wins over 100 miles. This is an unprecedented number, and the only person who can top it (for now, at least) is Meltzer himself.

Meltzer’s many records

With a streak of race wins that’s almost as old as the 21st century, Meltzer is the clear record-holder in that category. He also holds the record for the most 100-mile wins in a calendar year, with six in 2006 and five in both 2007 and 2009. He has the most wins at the Hardrock 100 (five), Wasatch 100 (six), Massanutten 100 (four), San Diego 100 (three) and Squaw Peak 50 (five). Like we said, he’s pretty good over 100 miles. In 2019, he raced five times, winning twice and grabbing a pair of podium finishes in two of the events. Outside of racing, he owns the fastest known time headed southbound on the 3,500K Appalachian Trail, which he covered in 45 days in 2016. As his resume proves, Meltzer is one of the greats in the world of ultrarunning.

Cutting it close

In an unexpected turn of events, COVID-19 almost foiled Meltzer’s hopes of winning a 100-miler for the 19th year in a row. He ran the Coldwater Rumble 100-miler in Arizona in January, but he didn’t finish the race. When the coronavirus hit and put racing on hold indefinitely, there was a very real possibility that the year would end without Meltzer getting another chance to compete.

Luckily, as the pandemic has drawn on, races have been popping up around the U.S., and while social distancing guidelines are in place at most, many people are still showing up to run. With just a couple of months left in 2020, Meltzer didn’t squander his opportunity in Tennessee, and he ran away with the win to continue his streak. Heading into 2021, he’ll have the chance to go for an incredible 20th year in a row with a 100-mile race win, and based on his recent performances, he’s certainly capable of accomplishing this feat.

(10/25/2020) ⚡AMP
by Running Magazine

Ethan Newberry’s first 100-mile training week

Here's what happened when the trail runner and filmmaker set out to document his first-ever 100-mile training week

For better or for worse, many runners consider the 100-mile training week to be an important benchmark. Even though it’s entirely arbitrary (and for many people would represent too much mileage for optimal training and health), the idea that they “should” be training at this volume holds sway over more people than would probably admit it. Filmmaker, musician, trail runner and race director Ethan Newberry of Seattle, aka The Ginger Runner (whose film Where Dreams Go To Die documents Gary Robbins’s first and second Barkley Marathons attempts), is one of those people.

For years, Newberry had wanted to do a 100-mile training week, just to prove that he could. So, with some guidance from his coach, David Roche, in the final days of 2019, he finally did.

Newberry acknowledges the arbitrariness of the benchmark 100 miles by saying that for some people, 100 miles a week is “not a lot,” and for others it represents a crazy amount of training volume. For him, it was a daunting challenge, for two main reasons: 1) he’d never done it before (which made it both a physical and a psychological challenge), and 2) as a middle-of-the-pack runner, 100 miles in seven days represents a serious time commitment.

His goals being simply to reach 100 miles without getting injured and while having fun, here’s how he and Roche planned out Newberry’s mileage for the week:

Monday: 15 miles

Tuesday: 10 miles

Wednesday: 10 mile/5 mile double

Thursday: 10 mile/5 mile double

Friday: 8 miles

Saturday: 20 miles

Sunday: 17 miles

All the runs were done at an easy pace.

(Note: anyone trying this for the first time, whether just for its own sake or as part of a training plan with a goal race in mind, should definitely build up to it gradually, and be aware that your sleep, recovery and nutrition needs will be significantly greater than usual. This is definitely not a goal for a beginner runner. )

The first day goes well, but to save time, Newberry does his 15 miles on the roads, and some joint soreness leads him to switch to the trails for day 2.Day 3 and 4 are doubles. On Day 3, Newberry decides to do the short run first. This is the first day he’s really aware of the recovery, sleep and nutritional challenges involved in a 100-mile week, but he wisely enlists two other runners to join him on the day’s second run, a 10-miler. By the end of it, he reports that his legs felt strong.

Halfway through the week’s mileage, Newberry say, “I can smell the finish line. And it smells like pizza.”

On day 7, Newberry’s elation at being almost finished his first triple-digit training week is palpable. “I feel like I could run another 50,” he says, adding, “It took me years to build up the courage to try.” Sometimes giving it your best shot is enough.

Not only is Newberry’s project a useful document of what a 100-mile week looks like, but his decision to run a different route for every run makes for a scenic and entertaining micro-travelogue of Seattle’s favourite routes.

(10/25/2020) ⚡AMP
by Running Magazine


ASICS Australia have announced the inaugural ASICS World Ekiden 2020: the ultimate team challenge that will see teams of up to six people from all over the world come together to complete a combined marathon. Inspired by a century of Japanese running culture, the race will be split into six legs of varying distances, making it perfect for runners of all abilities and experience.

Bringing people together when they’re apart

The launch of the ASICS World Ekiden 2020 comes in direct response to the findings of ASICS’ ongoing global research   into the ever-changing needs of runners and sports fans the world over. The research, which kicked off immediately after the pandemic began, reveals that 42% of people who exercise regularly are finding it difficult to stay motivated as they don’t have a goal to work towards at the moment.

Meanwhile, three in four (74% globally) of team sport players say sport or exercise is more enjoyable when played with friends and teammates and two thirds (67% globally) admit to missing the chance to compete with others. Half (50% globally) even claim their mental wellbeing has been negatively impacted by being disconnected from teammates.

Through the ASICS World Ekiden 2020, ASICS therefore aims to help people renew their connections with each other, enjoy the mental and physical benefits of team competition and re-energise their collective love of sport and exercise with a shared goal.

Yasuhito Hirota, President & Chief Operating Officer, ASICS, said: “It may be inspired by one of Japan’s most famous race formats, but the ASICS World Ekiden 2020 really is an event like no other.”

To help teams prepare to give their very best in the event, ASICS is offering them free access to a variety of products and services in the run-up to race day, including training, coaching and expert tips. To celebrate the achievement of everyone who takes part, all teams who complete the race will be automatically entered for a chance to win one of 10 prize packs, including running shoes, shorts, t-shirt and socks.

Yasuhito Hirota added: “At ASICS, listening to runners of all levels and understanding their evolving needs is at the heart of everything we do. Right now, that means helping bring back the mental, physical and social benefits that come with team sport. But as life continues to change in future, we’ll keep on innovating new products, services and events that deliver the experiences people want.”

Anyone can Ekiden – so the ASICS World Ekiden 2020 is open to all, with distances that attract all levels of runner. To take part, people simply sign up for free, using Runkeeper or the ASICS hub. Teams must complete their relay race between 11th and 22nd November 2020. Expert advice and training plans are available on Runkeeper and the latest news and information about ASICS World Ekiden 2020 is available via #ASICSWorldEkiden or

(10/24/2020) ⚡AMP
by Runner Stribe

Why Endurance Athletes Feel Less Pain?

While researching a book on endurance a few years ago, I interviewed a German scientist named Wolfgang Freund who had recently completed a study on the pain tolerance of ultra-endurance runners. Subjects in the study had to hold their hands in ice water for as long as possible.

The non-athlete control group lasted an average of 96 seconds before giving up; every single one of the runners, in contrast, made it to the three-minute safety cut-off, at which point they rated the pain as a mere 6 out of 10 on average.

The results were consistent with previous research showing that athletes can tolerate more pain than non-athletes. But not all sports impose the same demands, Freund pointed out: “Maradona, at least, had the illusion that a brilliant soccer player didn’t need to suffer.” As a runner myself, I liked the implication that endurance athletes are uniquely tough, so I happily included that quote in my book. But is it really true?

As it happens, researchers at Norway’s University of Tromsø tackled exactly that question, along with several other interesting ones, in a recent study in Frontiers in Psychology.

They compared 17 national-level soccer players with 15 elite endurance athletes (cross-country skiers and runners, also “competing at the highest national level in Norway”) and 39 non-athlete controls in three pain tests. They also administered a series of psychological questionnaires to explore what traits are associated with greater pain tolerance.

The first pain test was the same one used in Freund’s study: dunking the hand in barely-above-freezing water for as long as possible (again with a three-minute cut-off, though the subjects weren’t told about it in advance). On average, the endurance athletes lasted 179.67 seconds (meaning virtually all of them made it to three minutes, with the exception of one person who stopped five seconds early). The control group averaged 116.78 seconds, and the brilliant soccer players just 113.90 seconds.

This was exactly what the researchers expected. After all, embracing open-ended discomfort is exactly what endurance athletes do every day in training, so it makes sense that they have a high pain tolerance. But pain threshold—the point at which a sensation goes from unpleasant to painful—might be different. Soccer players, like other team sport athletes, experience briefer spikes of pain associated with “short bouts of supramaximal intensity and receiving blows from opponents or the ball,” the researchers point out. As a result, they hypothesized that the experience of this more intense pain would give soccer players a higher pain threshold than endurance athletes.

(10/24/2020) ⚡AMP
by Colorado runer

BAA to Decide in the next few weeks whether to hold the 2021 Boston Marathon on its traditional date in April, or whether to again postpone the event until later in the year

The Boston Athletic Association expects to announce in the next few weeks whether to hold the 2021 Boston Marathon on its traditional date in April, or whether to again postpone the event until later in the year, BAA CEO Tom Grilk told the Business Journal on Thursday.

The decision will carry major repercussions for the charities that rely on marathon fundraising. The BAA revealed Thursday that fundraising for the 2020 marathon, which was held virtually last month, declined by 17% year-over-year, to $32.1 million.

The BAA has postponed registration this year while an advisory group works to determine when and how the event can be held safely in 2021. The group consists of medical experts and public officials.

The decision will carry major repercussions for the charities that rely on marathon fundraising.

(10/24/2020) ⚡AMP
by Greg Ryan
Boston Marathon

Boston Marathon

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


Toth triumphs in Dudince, Fujita breaks through in Osaka

Matej Toth became the first four-time winner of the 50km race walk at the Dudince Fifty, clocking a world-leading 3:41:15 on Saturday (24).

Not only was it the first 50km race he has completed since the 2018 European Championships, it was also Toth’s fastest time since winning the Olympic title in Rio more than four years ago.

The 37-year-old led from the outset and covered the first five kilometres in 22:30, by which point he already had a 10-second lead over Germany’s Karl Junghannss. Toth slightly increased his pace and by 10km, reached in 44:52, his lead had almost doubled.

Toth passed through 20km in 1:29:26 with Junghannss still in second place with a comfortable lead over three-time Dudince winner Rafal Augustyn and Ecuador’s Andres Chocho. By the time Toth reached 37 kilometres in 2:44:10, his lead had grown to exactly one minute.

The 2015 world champion managed to turn the screw even tighter over the final 13 kilometres and upped his pace to extend his lead. Junghannss, meanwhile, started to fade in the final 10 kilometres and was eventually caught by Augustyn after three-and-a-half hours of racing. Cocho later passed a tiring Junghannss with just a mile to go.

Out in front, though, there was no catching Toth, who delighted his home supporters by winning in 3:41:15 – the fastest time in Dudince since he himself set a competition record of 3:34:38 in 2015.

Augustyn was second in 3:47:42 and Chocho placed third in 3:48:57. Junghannss held on for fourth place and was rewarded with an Olympic qualifying time of 3:49:45.

“We planned for this pace and it all worked well,” said Toth, who also won the 50km in Dudince in 2011, 2015 and 2018. “I felt great. I wanted to start conservatively and then increase the pace and it worked out exactly that way. I am, of course, very satisfied not only with the fact that I achieved the Olympic standard but mainly with qualify of my performance. It gives me confidence that I can compete with the best next year at the Olympic Games when I defend my title.”

Polish record-holder Agnieska Ellward, winner in the Slovak town three years ago, regained her Dudince 50 title in 4:38:44, having overtaken compatriot Antonina Lorek at 34 kilometres.

Fujita smashes PB in Osaka

Keitaro Fujita moved up several places on the Japanese all-time list after sailing over 2.28m in the men’s high jump at the Michitaka Kinami Memorial, a World Athletics Continental Tour Bronze meeting, in Osaka on Saturday (24).

The 23-year-old, winner of the 2016 Asian junior title, had competed sparingly in 2020 but had been improving with each outing. In Osaka he cleared his opening heights on his first attempt but then briefly surrendered his lead at 2.22m, needing two attempts to clear it while Japanese champion Tomohiro Shinno got over it on his first try.

Shinno, however, failed at the next height, 2.25m, while Fujita cleared it on his first attempt, equalling the PB he had set next year.

Shinno passed straight to 2.28m but failed to get over it with his two final tries. Fujita, meanwhile, succeeded on his third and final attempt. He went on to have three goes at 2.31m and was unsuccessful, but he was happy with his winning performance and victory over the country’s top high jumper of the year.

Japanese champion and Olympic finalist Ryohei Arai produced a season’s best of 81.73m in the final round of the men’s javelin to defeat Takuto Kominami.

The pair exchanged the lead in the first three rounds with Arai holding a slender lead at the half-way point with 76.64m. With his final throw of the competition, Kominami launched a season’s best of 78.93m to take back the lead. But Arai did likewise just minutes later, sending his spear out to a winning effort of 81.73m.

The women’s event was even more competitive as four different women shared the lead throughout the competition.

Momone Ueda opened with 58.15m, just 10 centimetres shy of her recent PB, to take an early lead and she backed it up with three more throws just shy of 58 metres. National record-holder Haruka Kitaguchi edged in front in round four, throwing 58.36m, while Mikako Yamashita (58.04m in round three) and Yuka Sato (58.08m in round four) joined the 58-metre party.

Sato crept into second place in the penultimate round, throwing 58.19m, and then improved further in the final round to move into first place with 60.69m. Yamashita also improved in the final round, throwing 59.07m to move from fourth to second place.

(10/24/2020) ⚡AMP
by World Athletics

Creating the bubble, cutting-edge technology, flexible thinking – how the 2020 Virgin Money London Marathon is the the only major city marathon to take place since the Covid-19 pandemic struck

The 2020 Virgin Money London Marathon on Sunday 4 October was the first major marathon in the world to take place since the Covid-19 pandemic changed the sporting landscape. It was also the first truly global sporting event in the UK to take place in a non-stadium or venue setting since the country went into lockdown in March. How was it done?

An autumn London Marathon for the first time

The 2020 Virgin Money London Marathon was due to be held on Sunday 26 April – that now seems a lifetime ago. As the Covid-19 epidemic turned into a global pandemic, London Marathon Events announced on Friday 13 March that the event had been postponed to Sunday 4 October, the first time ever the London Marathon would be held in the autumn.

The postponement was announced at a time when hundreds of events across the UK were being cancelled. However, London Marathon Events, unlike virtually all other organisers, was able to announce a new date thanks to the strong relationships and huge support for the world’s greatest marathon and biggest one day annual fundraising event from a multitude of stakeholders and partners.

Speaking immediately after communicating the news to all runners who had signed up to run in the 2020 race, Hugh Brasher, Event Director of the Virgin Money London Marathon, said: “We are extremely grateful for all the support we have received from City Hall, the London boroughs of Greenwich, Lewisham, Southwark, Tower Hamlets, the City of Westminster and the City of London, Transport for London, the emergency services, The Royal Parks, BBC TV and many others as we worked to find an alternative date.”

Only certainty is uncertainty

When the 4 October date was announced on Friday 13 March, the hope and expectation of Brasher and his team was the event would run in its usual format in 2020, just six months later. But the true scale of the pandemic was only just beginning to emerge. Just 10 days after the postponement announcement, the UK went into a full lockdown. As the country remained in lockdown throughout spring and into early summer, the London Marathon Events team were looking at all options to deliver one of Britain’s flagship sporting events while others fell by the wayside, seemingly on an almost weekly basis.

Brasher spoke to reporters ahead of what would have been the date of the 2020 Virgin Money London Marathon on Sunday 26 April and said: “The flame is still burning. And is there hope? Absolutely. But you have to do what’s right for society. You usually have 750,000 people out in central London watching 45,000 runners. Then there’s the medics, the 6,000 volunteers and the transport system. There’s so much to take into account when making any decision.”

London Marathon Events committed to making a final decision on the 2020 event by August and staff continued to work on a range of scenarios as the landscape changed on an almost weekly basis. Scenarios ranged from holding a socially-distanced mass event to an elite-only race. As Brasher said continuously to his team, ‘the only certainty is uncertainty and we have to remain agile’.

Elite race confirmed

A final decision had to be made.

The overall picture in the UK during July and going into August, though improving, did not indicate that an event involving 40,000 people running through the streets of London in October would be possible. Sport had returned but was taking place behind closed doors. Restrictions were lifting gradually but local lockdowns were being implemented and there was a growing sense that once autumn and winter arrived, cases would again be on the rise.

London Marathon Events had been working on plans to deliver a socially distanced mass participation event – either a run or a walk – and were looking to use new technology which would monitor the distance participants were from one another throughout their run (this planning did not go to waste as it would be used for the elite event, more of which later).

Ultimately, however, the challenge of managing spectators, ensuring the emergency services had access across London, the increased likelihood of a second spike and the ongoing concern about the pressure on the NHS, ensured a final decision was made that there could be no mass-participation event on the streets of London.

Instead, the 2020 Virgin Money London Marathon would have an entirely new format for 2021: elite races only on a closed-loop circuit in central London and a virtual race for 45,000 people who were encouraged to run the 2020 Virgin Money London Marathon – Your Way, the first virtual event in the 40 year history of the London Marathon.

Build it and they will come

When athletes’ agents were first contacted to ask if their runners would be interested in coming to London, the response was unequivocal: if London Marathon Events could build it then the world’s best would come – it was now down to Brasher’s team to hold up their end of the bargain.

How do you put on an elite race for more than 100 of the best marathon athletes on the planet in a safe, secure environment? That would be a challenge given 12 months of planning but for London Marathon Events, the total preparation time amounted to about eight weeks.

The first priority was confirming a course. All other sports that had returned to action during the course of the summer of 2020 had done so in either a stadium (think football and cricket) or in a secure venue such as Silverstone in the case of F1. There had been no organisation that had tried to close down public roads to create an event.

The team’s solution was to create a venue that could be contained and prevent general public access. The organisation has a long-standing and strong relationship with The Royal Parks, the Mayor of London’s Office and Westminster City Council and their support meant the first choice of course could go ahead: the event to be held on a closed-loop circuit around St James’s Park in central London which would ensure the iconic finish on The Mall would remain in the same place as it has done for the past 27 years.

A constant dialogue with the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS) ensured that the Government gave its blessing to the plans and granted the necessary permissions for athlete travel. With the green light given, a 19.7 lap closed-loop circuit was created which followed the perimeter of St James’s Park, starting and finishing on The Mall. Screened barriers were to be erected on either side of the course to deter people from coming to watch on the day and, in effect, a venue had been created in the heart of London.

The London Marathon Events team was also able to build on invaluable experience from 12 months earlier as an integral part of the delivery team that put on the INEOS 1.59 Challenge, Eliud Kipchoge’s historic sub two hour marathon which took place on a closed loop circuit in Vienna. For that event, the team had carried out detailed research on putting a marathon on a looped course and, furthermore, when searching for a course for the INEOS 1.59 Challenge, had explored the the possibility of staging the challenge on the St James’s Park loop.

Creating a biosecure bubble

Securing a course and a world-class line up in four races (elite men, elite women and men’s and women’s wheelchair) was the relatively easy part – or at least areas of great expertise for the London Marathon Events team. However the team had no previous experience in putting on an event in a Covid-19 world but they learnt fast.

To make the race completely safe and secure for athletes and all staff, the team created a biosecure bubble around the event. Information on the best way to do this was garnered from other sports which had returned to action, as well as from medical and security experts and Government advisors from DCMS.

The biosecure bubble would be created from the moment the elite athletes arrived in the country to the moment they left the UK after the race. In total it amounted to a nine-day window from Sunday 28 September to Monday 5 October.

The first challenge was finding a location where elite marathon athletes could stay for the week leading up to the race. A checklist was drawn up for what was needed: exclusive use of a hotel, within an hour’s travelling distance from the course, grounds large enough for athletes to train in, big enough to create socially distanced eating and relaxation areas, the ability to hold remote press conferences…the list was exhaustive.

Eventually a hotel was found about 60 minutes outside central London. Its identity was kept secret to prevent anyone from turning up to see athletes. Hotel staff were booked in for the full eight days to ensure they were in the bubble and security was booked to man the site 24/7.

Race sponsor Abbott, a life-changing tech company and global diagnostics leader, provided the critically important Covid-19 testing for the elite athletes, staff and everyone else working in the biosecure bubble.

All elite athletes, their coaches and support staff had to undertake a Covid-19 test in their country of origin before flying into London, Anyone who failed a test could not travel. In addition, every single person that went into the hotel from the UK had to return a negative Covid-19 test four days prior to arrival. Everyone was tested again the day they arrived at the hotel and again on Friday 2 October. Absolutely nothing was left to chance.

Of all the athletes and support staff invited to London, only two people, both from Ethiopia, had positive Covid-19 tests prior to travel. Degitu Azimeraw, the 2019 Amsterdam Marathon champion, and Haji Adillio, the coach to the eventual men’s champion Shura Kitata, were the unfortunate pair prevented from travelling. Adillio had been away from home and only in contact by telephone with his athletes for the 10 days prior to the travel window, meaning his athletes could still travel.

Another headache for the London Marathon team was getting the athletes from their countries to London in a safe environment. The majority of the international athletes were coming from East Africa, either Kenya or Ethiopia, so to mitigate against the risk of small groups travelling on different scheduled flights to the UK, a charter flight was booked for all of the East Africans. The plane, containing world record holders Eliud Kipchoge and Brigid Kosgei, made stops in Eldoret, Kenya, and Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, before heading to London.

Elsewhere around the world, athletes were boarding planes in the likes of Chicago, Melbourne and Amsterdam on their way to London.

On arrival at the hotel, every athlete and support staff member was tested again by the Abbott team and all tested negative. Everyone resident in the bubble was then tested again on Friday 2 October, two days before race day, for a final time. Given all the hard work and effort that had been put in by the organisers to this point, awaiting the final test results was undoubtedly the nerviest time in the entire event.

Extra reinforcement with cutting-edge Bump technology

Though the Friday testing was an anxious time for all, London Marathon staff were reassured by the knowledge that they had done everything in their power to ensure all those in the hotel were Covid free, including introducing new technology to implement social distancing.

The Bump devices, created by Tharsus, were worn by all elite athletes and 500 members of the Virgin Money London Marathon’s operational team both in the athlete hotel and at the venue to help maintain the biosecure bubble for the event.

The Bump devices were attached to a lanyard and worn around the neck like a medal. Bump helped inform effective social-distancing behaviour by using sophisticated Radio Frequency technology to create a 'Personal Motion System' that immediately alerts wearers when they are getting too close to another person. Going within two metres of someone prompted a blue flashing light and within 1.2 metres a red flashing light and loud beeping noise.

Data was downloaded daily which allowed organisers to accurately monitor how often and how long elite athletes and event staff spent in close proximity to each other. If anyone in the bubble tested positive for Covid-19 either during the event or during the two weeks following the event, organisers would be able to trace interactions back to specific wearers and inform them accordingly.

These Bump devices were part of the new normal in the elite athlete hotel as the best marathoners in the world got used to the flashing warning lights and sounds should they get too close to another person.

Away from the hotel, the Bumps were worn by all staff working on the build of the event site in the run-up to and on race day itself as the team prepared to build a venue on the Queen’s front garden befitting The 40th Race in London Marathon history.

Race Day

A quick glance at the BBC television pictures on race day morning and you would have been forgiven for thinking that though it might have been six months later, it looked like the same old London Marathon – with the familiar iconic finish on The Mall. But the reality was very different. Just like the work that went into delivering the hotel bubble, every last intricate detail of Race Day was planned to ensure the bubble, which would travel from hotel to the venue, would remain secure.

From the individual areas (including personal toilets!) provided for each athlete to the socially-distanced media interviews post-race, nothing was overlooked.

The halt to trials of bringing fans back to sport in September extinguished any hope that some spectators would be allowed into the venue which meant staff were brought in to patrol the interior and exterior perimeters of the route – though the awful weather on the day did mean most people were content to watch it in the warmth of their homes.

A very limited number of media was allowed into the venue with London Marathon Events creating their own content service which pushed out interviews and B-roll footage throughout the day. This followed the virtual press conferences held during race week and the daily updates of life inside the bubble in video and photographic form which were produced every day from the athletes’ hotel and made available for free to all media.

The only lack of social distancing that took place for the whole week was when the racing started but women’s world record holder Brigid Kosgei is used to running solo and she proved again that she is streets ahead of the opposition to win the first race of the day, in heavy rain and wind. However Kosgei was the only favourite to come out on top in a year where the unexpected really should have been expected.

Men’s world record holder, sub-two hour marathon man and four-time champion Eliud Kipchoge (Kenya) dramatically surrendered his title with Ethiopia’s Shura Kitata triumphing while both Brent Lakatos (Canada) and Nikita den Boer (Netherlands) overturned the form books to win the wheelchair races.

For all the winners, their moments of triumph will be memories they will never forget. But even in the instant triumph of winning the greatest marathon in the world, they were reminded this is 2020 and nothing is as it was. Bumps were returned, celebratory pictures and media interviews were held with social distancing prioritised and the never-to-be-forgotten moment of standing on top of the podium in front of Buckingham Palace, posing for pictures was done while wearing a face mask – an image that will forever capture the London Marathon in 2020.

While Kipchoge – the greatest marathon runner in history - was not on the podium himself this time, he summed up the feelings of all the athletes that had taken part when he said: “I want to thank the organisation of the London Marathon for going the extra mile to make the event possible. It shows what’s possible and gives hope other organisations can incorporate their plans to make sports possible in current times.”

Long after Kipchoge and the other elites had left The Mall, darkness had descended and London Marathon staff were in a race against time to deconstruct the venue they had built for this historic occasion.

In the murky October gloom, hundreds of staff worked in the rain and wind to take down in a matter of hours what had been months in the planning. Amid the usual flurry of work seen while de-rigging a site, there was one recurring and very 2020 sight and sound: the flashing lights and warning beeps of the Bump technology that ensured everyone, to the very end, did all they could to protect one another in a year and an event like no other.

That was The 40th Race.

(10/24/2020) ⚡AMP
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...


Lausanne succumbs to coronavirus resurgence

There will be no Lausanne Marathon in 2020.

Faced with the resurgence of coronavirus cases, the Lausanne Marathon committee, in consultation and in agreement with the Department of Economy, Innovation and Sport of the Canton of Vaud, is forced to cancel the race of this Sunday.

A “covid-compatible” race had been planned limited to fewer than 1,000 runners, with a strict health policy to ensure the health of runners and volunteers, but the evolution of the public health situation does not allow the event to continue.

The Lausanne Marathon committee said “Our thoughts are with the marathoners who have prepared for months for this deadline that we were keen to offer them. They go also to our faithful volunteers who were in a hurry to bring this edition to life, and to our sponsors and partners.”

(10/23/2020) ⚡AMP
Lausanne Marathon

Lausanne Marathon

The Lausanne Marathon or Marathon of Lausanne is an annual marathon race held in the Swiss city of Lausanne since 1993. This road running takes place in autumn (October). Parallel to the marathon, a half-marathon, a 10 km, a 10 km walking and Nordic walking, and a mini-marathon race of 4 km are organized. The Lausanne Marathon is one of...


Jamaican Usain Bolt will be honored with statue in his city

The statue of the multi-time Olympic and world champion is scheduled to be erected by the end of the year.

According to a report from the Jamaica Observer, a town in Jamaica has plans to honor Usain Bolt by erecting a statue of him within the next couple of months. The city of Falmouth is in Bolt’s home parish (a term used to describe different regions in Jamaica) of Trelawny, although the multiple Olympic and world championship gold medalist was actually born in Sherwood Content, a small town half an hour south of the soon-to-be site of the statue. Bolt’s fellow Team Jamaica sprinter and Olympic champion Veronica Campbell–Brown — another native of Trelawny Parish — will also be celebrated, with a school set to be named after her. 

Honoring the greats 

Bolt is the world record-holder in the 100m (9.58 seconds) and 200m (19.19 seconds), a 14-time world championship medalist (11 gold, two silver, one bronze) and eight-time Olympic champion. Like Bolt, Campbell-Brown had an unforgettable career, winning eight Olympic medals (three gold, three silver, two bronze) and 11 world championship medals (three gold, seven silver, one bronze), and she competed at five Olympic Games. These two sprinters are without a doubt a couple of the greatest athletes in their country’s history, and it’s no surprise they’re being honored back home.

Olivia Grange, Jamaica’s minister of sports, youth and culture, told the Observer that Bolt’s statue will be located in Falmouth’s Water Square, near the city’s downtown core, and she explained why the government decided on this instalment. “When we say Trelawny today, we think immediately of the honorable Usain Bolt, who hails from the quiet district of Sherwood Content and who has placed Jamaica on the world stage in a way unlike any other,” Grange said. 

The Jamaican minister of sports also touched on Campbell-Brown. “Very soon, Troy Primary [School] will be renamed the Veronica Campbell-Brown Primary School.” Troy is a small town on the southern border of Trelawny. 

A rollercoaster year 

This year has had its highs and lows for Bolt. In May, he and his partner, Kasi Bennett, became parents for the first time with the birth of their daughter, Olympia Lightning Bolt. Just a couple of months later, Bolt made headlines when he tested positive for COVID-19 after hosting a mask-free birthday party at his home in Jamaica. Many international celebrities and professional athletes reportedly attended Bolt’s party, which didn’t reflect well on the three-time Olympian. Now, two months after his party, his mistake appears to have been forgiven, and he will be honored back home at some point in December. 

(10/23/2020) ⚡AMP
by Ben Snider-McGrath

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

(10/23/2020) ⚡AMP
Honolulu Marathon

Honolulu Marathon

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


For third consecutive time Brighton Marathon postponed until autumn 2021

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Brighton Marathon

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


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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Boston Marathon

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


Frankfurt Marathon continues partnership with Mainova

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

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

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

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

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

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

Mainova Frankfurt Marathon

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

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