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Japan was one of the first countries after China to detect cases of the virus, its first on 16 January, but taking until 7 April for official numbers to climb enough for the national government to declare a state of emergency.
The official response within Japanese athletics has been similar, simultaneously fast and slow. The Tokyo Marathon on 1 March was one of the first outside China to put a stop order on this year’s edition, announcing that it would cancel its mass-participation race and go ahead as an elite-only event. The Nagoya Women’s Marathon on 8 March echoed that days later.
But while other road races joined Nagoya in following Tokyo’s lead, outdoor track season appeared ready to go forward. Some individual events in early April were voluntarily cancelled, but after 2008 Olympic 4x100m silver medallist Naoki Tsukahara was diagnosed with the coronavirus on 30 March, the JAAF Athlete Committee submitted a formal written request to the JAAF that all competitions through the end of May be cancelled or postponed. The JAAF went one better, cancelling or postponing everything through the end of June, including the National Championships.
So where did this leave Japan’s athletes? For some, it put fresh-caught dreams straight on to ice. Tokyo, Nagoya and Lake Biwa were the culmination of a three-year process to put together the best Olympic marathon teams Japan could. After these races, on 8 March the JAAF confirmed the line-ups of Honami Maeda, Ayuko Suzuki, and Mao Ichiyama for women, and Shogo Nakamura, Yuma Hattori and Suguru Osako for men.
On 15 March at the 20km race walk Olympic trials, Nanako Fujii and Koki Ikeda joined Kumiko Okada, Toshikazu Yamanishi, Yusuke Suzuki and Masatora Kawano on the Olympic race walk teams. Eiki Takahashi was added a few weeks later.
Japanese athletes have it easier. Low official infection numbers and the absence of a lockdown have meant comparatively fewer restrictions, but it’s still meant changes. Yuki Saito, assistant coach for both marathon runner Suzuki and 5000m Olympic team favourite Ririka Hironaka, said: “Suzuki was supposed to get physiotherapy at the Japan Institute of Sport Science, but it’s been closed and that’s been an issue. With 11 athletes on our team, we never have more than four or five running together. We can’t do out-of-town training, and since the declaration of emergency, the university where we do workouts has been closed. We’re probably going to use some nearby parks twice a week. With more people working from home there’ll be more around, so we have to be careful not to come too close.”
Post-collegiate Japanese athletes also have a little more peace of mind thanks to the corporate team system. Team members are salaried employees of the sponsor company, meaning that if the situation stretches on for months, they should still get paid whether or not they compete. That means less financial vulnerability than many professional athletes elsewhere.
But there is still the frustration of carefully worked-out plans thrown out the window and no races on the immediate horizon. Brendan Reilly, agent for all three women on the Olympic marathon squad, said: “We had race and/or training plans in place, and the last of those was scrapped in early April.”
For now, like everywhere, it’s a holding pattern. Like everywhere, Japanese athletes are doing what they can to stay optimistic and focused, and to help transmit the same feelings to the general population as the situation becomes more serious. From the members of the 4x100m team to high jump national record-holder Naoto Tobe to marathon runner Hattori, they’ve been posting workouts the average person can do at home, baking tips, and just positive messages.
“Sport is not only essential to maintain and elevate our physical and mental health,” wrote National Sports Agency commissioner and Olympic gold medallist Daichi Suzuki, “but also gives people pride, joy, dreams, excitement, courage. I hope all of us in the sport community can work together as one to help bring this public health threat under control.”
It’s a sentiment everyone in the sport worldwide can take to heart as we all face uncertainty in the year to come.(04/29/2020) ⚡AMP
On Tuesday, French Prime Minister Edouard Philippe confirmed that major sporting events would be cancelled until at least September. UTMB, one of the world’s biggest trail races, is set to run August 24 to 30 in Chamonix, France.
Despite this announcement, Catherine Poletti, co-founder of UTMB, thinks that the race will go ahead, just with some changes to the original plan.
Poletti says that while the race won’t be able to accommodate their 10,000 entrants, if they capped the event at 5,000, it might be possible.
“We are working on the barrier measures, not only for the start, but on all fronts,” she told Le Dauphine. “We are committed to not giving up. We still want to organize the event in compliance with the rules.
The entire economic community of the Mont-Blanc valley needs this. We are a race outside a mass stadium, which can adapt to the rules set by the government.”
While UTMB will hopefully be able to run, events like the Tour de France are facing cancellation.
The Tour, which was already rescheduled from June to August, will be well over the gathering cap of 5,000 people and is considered a major sporting event. No official statement has been made yet in regard to the Tour.(04/29/2020) ⚡AMP
Mountain race, with numerous passages in high altitude (>2500m), in difficult weather conditions (night, wind, cold, rain or snow), that needs a very good training, adapted equipment and a real capacity of personal autonomy. It is 6:00pm and we are more or less 2300 people sharing the same dream carefully prepared over many months. Despite the incredible difficulty, we feel...more...
Kenya's athletes will benefit from a 500,000 U.S. dollar global fund, which World Athletics launched on Tuesday to help athletes with their financial needs through the Covid-19 pandemic period.
Athletics Kenya (AK) president Jack Tuwei welcomed the move saying it will help bail out athletes who are most effected by the lack of competition with a complete lockdown of sports competitions globally.
"Certainly this fund will cushion them (athletes) from the effects of this virus. Every sector needs help and we thank World Athletics for coming up with such an initiative for athletes," Tuwei said in Nairobi.
World Athletics President Sebastian Coe said the fund would be used to assist athletes who have lost most of their income in the last few months due to the suspension of international competition while the world combats the global health emergency.
Coe said it was important that the sport supports its athletes who are most in need during the current circumstances.
"I am in constant contact with athletes around the world and I know that many are experiencing financial hardship as a consequence of the shutdown of most international sports competition in the last two months," said Coe.
Most professional athletes rely on prize money as part of their income.
"We're mindful that our competition season, on both the track and road, is being severely impacted by the pandemic. We are hopeful that we will be able to stage at least some competition later this year, but in the meantime we will also endeavor, through this fund and additional monies we intend to seek through the friends of our sport, to help as many athletes as possible," Coe added.
The World Athletics head will chair an expert multi-regional working group to assess the applications for assistance, which will be submitted through World Athletics' six Area Associations.
The members include Olympic champion and 1500m world record-holder Hicham El Guerrouj, and Olympic pole vault champion Katerina Stefanidi among others.(04/29/2020) ⚡AMP
In the midst of the novel coronavirus crisis both in Japan and abroad and in light of the disease's constantly changing impact and the difficulty of assessing the future situation, the organizers of the 2020 Fukuoka Marathon, scheduled for Nov. 8, have made the decision to cancel this year's race.
We apologize to everyone who had looked forward to the Fukuoka Marathon and to everyone involved with it, but we ask for your understanding.
We hope that the coronavirus crisis comes to an end quickly and that everyone can return to their daily lives, and we ask you all to take care of both your physical and mental health until that day comes.
The Fukuoka Marathon Organizing Committee.(04/28/2020) ⚡AMP
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. ...more...
The postponed Tokyo 2020 Olympics will be cancelled if the coronavirus pandemic isn't brought under control by next year, the organising committee's president said in comments published Tuesday.
The pandemic has already forced a year-long delay of the Games, which are now scheduled to open on July 23, 2021, but Tokyo 2020 president Yoshiro Mori said no further postponement was possible.
In an interview with Japan's Nikkan Sports daily, Mori was categorical when asked if the Olympics could be delayed until 2022 if the pandemic remains a threat next year, replying: "No."
"In that case, it's cancelled," Mori said.
Mori said the Games had been cancelled previously only during wartime and compared the battle against coronavirus to "fighting an invisible enemy".
If the virus is successfully contained, "we'll hold the Olympics in peace next summer", he added. "Mankind is betting on it."
Under heavy pressure from athletes and sports associations, Japanese organisers and the International Olympic Committee agreed in March to a year-long postponement of the Games.
Organisers and Japanese officials have said the delayed Olympics will be a chance to showcase the world's triumph over the coronavirus, but questions have arisen about whether even a year's postponement is sufficient.
On Tuesday, the head of Japan Medical Association warned it would be "exceedingly difficult" to hold the Games next year if a vaccine had not been found.
"I would not say that they should not be held, but it would be exceedingly difficult," Yoshitake Yokokura told reporters at a briefing.
And last week a Japanese medical expert who has criticised the country's response to the coronavirus warned that he was "very pessimistic" that the postponed Olympics can be held in 2021.(04/28/2020) ⚡AMP
Saucony recently announced that the company will focus on sustainability as it moves forward, and almost all of its new products will be made with renewable materials.
The company is even developing its first biodegradable shoe, which is “one small step toward reducing our footprint for good.” Hundreds of millions of pairs of shoes are produced every year, and hundreds of millions more are tossed in the trash and end up in landfills.
With more sustainable practices and materials used, companies can significantly lower the amount of waste humans produce on a yearly basis.
Eco-Friendly production.- Natural, organic and recycled materials were used to produce Saucony’s new Spring 2020 collection. The company’s “environmentally conscious materials” include recycled polyester, which it produces by melting existing plastic (water bottles, for example) and turning it into a new polyester fibre.
Saucony is looking to use as much recycled polyester as possible without sacrificing the comfort and durability of its products.
Saucony’s eco-friendly materials also include recycled nylon and organic cotton. Even the tags attached to clothing will be made with a mix of recycled post-consumer waste and paper.
The first-ever biodegradable Saucony shoe was the focus of a Super Bowl ad in February. In the commercial the narrator asks the question, “What if the shoes we threw away actually went away?” That is the goal of the biodegradable shoe, which is still in development: to have a shoe which, when thrown away, won’t just sit in landfill and take decades to decompose.
The first biodegradable shoe will be added to the Saucony Originals line, and it will be made from natural materials and renewable resources while also remaining completely free of plastics, bioplastics and plastic derivatives.
In addition to creating this eco-friendly shoe, its manufacturing process will use less electricity, and it won’t be built using petroleum-based glues and threads. It’s a shoe that is environmentally friendly from its earliest stages of production until the end of its life.(04/28/2020) ⚡AMP
This past weekend, Gary Robbins went for a run on his treadmill, and he didn’t stop for almost 26 hours. He ran in the Aravaipa Strong virtual race, competing in the 100-mile event, and his run doubled as a fundraiser for the B.C. Search and Rescue Association. Running for 26 hours is hard enough, but Robbins made it even tougher on himself and climbed around 17,500 feet in addition to running 100 miles.
His challenge has raised over $15,000 for the B.C. Search and Rescue Association, and donations can still be made to support the cause.
The British Columbia Search and Rescue Association is a non-profit society that represents 79 search and rescue groups across B.C. Across the province, 2,500 volunteers are available in over 80 communities 24/7, collectively putting in 100,000 hours of work each year.
These groups have an incredible rate of success, with 95 per cent of subjects found or rescued within the first 24 hours of a call. The Search and Rescue Association gets some support from the provincial government, but it relies on donations to stay active.
Robbins hoped to raise $5,000 for the non-profit, but he has tripled that goal and the total now sits above $15,000.
Robbins’ official time for the 100-mile run was 25:53:42. Although this is almost 10 hours slower than the winner of the 100-mile Aravaipa Strong event (American Sarah Emoto won the virtual race in 16:15:46), Robbins likely had a much harder run than any of the other competitors as it included 17,500 feet of elevation.
Robbins is no stranger to ultramarathons, and before the coronavirus outbreak he was gearing up for another shot at the Barkley Marathons this year. Even with a history of ultrarunning, Robbins struggled with the treadmill run.
“Happy to have gotten through this so that I never have to think about anything like this again,” he tweeted. “It was challenging in all the ways I thought it’d be and lots more ways I hadn’t envisioned. My body is completely wrecked.” His wife, Linda Barton-Robbins, also tweeted post-race, saying that her husband couldn’t even make it up their stairs at home.
The Aravaipa Strong virtual race took place from April 17 to 26, and runners could choose from seven distances, starting with 5K up to 100 miles. The races featured over 2,000 runners worldwide from 29 different countries. Ten per cent of the proceeds from the race were donated to the COVID-19 Solidarity Response Fund.(04/28/2020) ⚡AMP
World Athletics, together with the International Athletics Foundation (IAF), has today launched a US$500,000 fund to support professional athletes experiencing financial hardship due to the coronavirus pandemic.
World Athletics President Sebastian Coe, who also chairs the IAF, said the fund would be used to assist athletes who have lost most of their income in the last few months due to the suspension of international competition while the world combats the global health emergency.
Established in 1986 to support charitable causes involving athletics, the International Athletics Foundation, under the Honorary Presidency of HSH Prince Albert II of Monaco, has allocated resources from its budgets for 2020 and 2021 to assist athletes in need through this process.Coe will chair an expert multi-regional working group to assess the applications for assistance, which will be submitted through World Athletics’ six Area Associations.
The members will include: Olympic champion and 1500m world record-holder Hicham El Guerrouj, Olympic pole vault champion Katerina Stefanidi (representing the WA Athletes’ Commission), WA Executive Board members Sunil Sabharwal (Audit Committee) and Abby Hoffman, WA Council members Adille Sumariwalla, Beatrice Ayikoru and Willie Banks, IAF Executive Committee member and former WA treasurer Jose Maria Odriozola and Team Athletics St Vincent and the Grenadines President Keith Joseph.
The working group will meet this week to establish a process for awarding and distributing grants to individual athletes and to look at other ways to raise additional monies for the fund.Coe said it was important that the sport supported its athletes most in need during the current circumstances.
“I would especially like to thank Hicham for bringing this idea to us, and Prince Albert for his strong support of this project. I am in constant contact with athletes around the world and I know that many are experiencing financial hardship as a consequence of the shutdown of most international sports competition in the last two months. Our professional athletes rely on prize money as part of their income and we’re mindful that our competition season, on both the track and road, is being severely impacted by the pandemic.
We are hopeful that we will be able to stage at least some competition later this year, but in the meantime we will also endeavour, through this fund and additional monies we intend to seek through the friends of our sport, to help as many athletes as possible.
"HSH Prince Albert II added: "I created more than 35 years ago the International Athletics Foundation with the late Primo Nebiolo to encourage and promote athletics and grant financial assistance to athletics federations and the most deserving athletes.
Since its inception the Foundation has distributed for these purposes more than US$30 Million. I am delighted that we can put our resources behind this initiative so we can make a difference to the lives of athletes who are suffering financially at this time.
We hope that this support will help those athletes preparing for international competition, including next year’s Olympic Games, to sustain their training, support their families and that this will relieve them of some stress in these uncertain times.’’El Guerrouj said: “The pandemic is causing economic pain to people from all parts of society, including athletes, and this is a time when we must come together as a global community to help each other.
I am delighted that Seb and World Athletics reacted so positively to my suggestion that we create a fund for athletes, and have made it happen with the support of the International Athletics Foundation.
The suspension of competition has had a huge impact on many professional athletes because they can’t earn prize money so I’m really pleased that we have found a way to assist them.”(04/28/2020) ⚡AMP
We have all been watching as the COVID-19 global pandemic continues to evolve and affect every aspect of our lives right now. In order to prevent the spread of the illness and to not overwhelm the healthcare system around the world, governments have taken a wide array of measures including limiting large scale events.
The City and County of San Francisco has led the charge and helped flatten the curve, yet there is still more to be done and the health and safety of our participants, staff and volunteers is always our first priority. Following further discussions with the City and County of San Francisco, we have made the decision to reschedule the San Francisco Marathon to November 15, 2020. We are grateful for the support of the City and County for their flexibility and assistance in selecting this new date to ensure our runners can still enjoy this iconic City event. We are working to implement new race day safety measures that we will share over the coming months.(04/27/2020) ⚡AMP
2020 race has been moved to November 15 from July 26. The San Francisco Marathon (Full Marathon, 1st Half Marathon, 2nd Half Marathon, 5K and Ultra marathon) will fill San Francisco’s streets. The course is both challenging and rewarding. You’ll enjoy waterfront miles along the Embarcadero, Fisherman’s Wharf, and Crissy Field; feel your heart pound as you race across the...more...
A Greenwich family of three generations say they are "blown away" by the response to their plan to walk a marathon on their balcony.
Ruth, 87, Charles, 58, Deborah, 57, and James Montlake, 31, will be walking a marathon's distance together on their balcony on the cancelled London Marathon date.
The challenge will be in aid of myeloma, a type of blood cancer that Charles was diagnosed with in December last year.
Charles told the PA news agency: "Myeloma UK is a charity which does a lot of good work and when I was first diagnosed in December, like many people, I didn't know anything about myeloma ... they really were there for me and I feel like in what we're doing, we're giving something back."
The family estimates that the challenge on the 11-metre-long balcony will take over 10 hours and around 4,000 lengths to complete.
They began the marathon at 9am on Sunday, and are expecting friends and family to cheer them on from the park below their flat.
Charles told PA: "As we live in Greenwich, we're very close to the marathon ... we always walk up the hill to watch it start and then come back down to cheer people as they pass by.
"We're obviously going to miss the marathon ... so we're going to do it ourselves!"
Aside from Charles's weekly chemotherapy at Guy's Hospital, he and the rest of the family must isolate, with neighbours delivering shopping for them.
Charles told PA: "We've been very lucky (during lockdown) because James is not normally in the UK. It's really nice to have our son with us and that has really helped us a lot.
"Apart from that, we've barely had a moment to get bored, we've all got things to do."
The challenge started with a £260 target to correspond with the marathon's 26-mile distance, but the family now has a target of £10,000 due to funds pouring in.
Charles's mother Ruth, who normally uses a walking frame, said: "I'm really quite excited about it ... this has been a wonderful opportunity to help.(04/27/2020) ⚡AMP
Lizzie Shankland-Fee said the courage of her dad, former Huntington School deputy head Gordon Fee, was driving her on to organise a social-distancing marathon with a group of friends.
Gordon, 80, was a gymnast who marked his 60th birthday by turning six back-flips. He still boasted a six-pack when he turned 75. But after running the 2018 York 10K Gordon felt breathless and tests showed he had the lung cancer mesothelioma.
He underwent surgery, chemotherapy and other gruelling treatments, and was not expected to live beyond a year, but Gordon, his wife Linda and their family are continuing to take each day as it comes, supported by York Against Cancer.
The charity gave them a free short break at its Whitby apartment and Gordon has also taken part in its free exercise sessions. “The holiday was magical,” said Lizzie, 40.
“The apartment is a magnificent penthouse and the views of the beach are phenomenal. “Some days Dad struggled but he could watch us taking the kids down to the beach. When he was well we carried him down there and he had the most amazing day, just watching us burying the kids in the sand! It was perfect. We now live for the rainbow days and memories we can make together.”
But Lizzie, a teacher who lives in Manchester, has not been able to see Gordon and his wife Linda since coronavirus struck. They are self-isolating at home in York.
Lizzie has set up a JustGiving page, where wellwishers can sponsor her and leave messages of support.
She says her dad was very touched when she told him what she was doing. “People have left such lovely messages and for him to be able to read them is really sweet.”(04/27/2020) ⚡AMP
What began with a conversation between four people, who were due to take part in yesterday's marathon around the streets of the capital before it was cancelled because of the coronavirus pandemic, escalated.
The quartet spread the word among fellow members and friends of Keighley & Craven Athletic Club and Craven Energy Triathlon Club.
And 41 entrants – equating, with relay teams, to more than 100 people – each pounded the 26.2-mile-distance around their gardens and yards yesterday.
They 'lined-up' on a virtual Zoom start line at 9.30am for the challenge, which so far has raised around £13,000.
Organiser Gary Chapman, 52, of Haworth, said the response had been "remarkable".
"I have been a member of both clubs for many years and I've never been as proud with so many people stepping-up at no notice to support Manorlands," he added.
"I help with the Keighley & Craven club's junior section and was inspired throughout the day with photos/videos of our wonderfully-talented youngsters pinging their way through to me on WhatsApp as I ran the entire 26.2 miles myself in my garden – it got me through the pain, with 6,400ft of ascent and 17,400 garden steps to negotiate in 372 laps!"
Also among those taking part were junior coaches Sue Straw and Tony Booth, with their children Dylan and Maizie. Tony ran the whole marathon in four hours 26 minutes, while the rest of the family completed it in relay formation. Sue also organised for a number of juniors to complete a virtual relay.
Dick Ballantine, 54, a headteacher from Haworth well-known for some of his long-distance challenges, stepped-up to the mark. He ran around his field, occasionally being accompanied by daughter Poppy on her horse. "Despite a nasty injury at six miles he completed the next 20 in lots of pain to show his support for Manorlands," said Gary.
Other participants included Pablo and Mel Vasquez and their children Marcela, six, Santi, ten, and Seb, 12, who between them completed the full marathon distance. Pablo said: "It was a fantastic family day for a great cause."(04/27/2020) ⚡AMP
In 2016, Kipchoge reclaimed Kenya's gold in the marathon, which was first won by the late Samuel Wanjiru at the magnificent Bird's Nest stadium in the 2008 Beijing Olympics but was lost at the 2012 London Games to Stephen Kiprotich of Uganda.
Now the 35-year-old is dreaming of adding another feather to his illustrious cap by having a great addition to his impressive distance running record to win the second gold on the Olympic marathon.
"If all goes well next year 2021, I will defend my title in the marathon in a competitive field and probably post a good time. It will add more to my running career," Kipchoge told the Olympic Channel.
Over a decade ago, Kipchoge felt like he had the inspiration and energy to finally get crowned the Olympic champion in Beijing.
He was making his second appearance at the Games having clinched bronze at the Athens Games in 2004. But he had to wait another eight years to win the Olympic title."I was really in shape in Beijing.
Even with two laps to go my mind was telling me, 'You will be Olympic Champion this year'. But I had no more fuel and Kenenisa Bekele won the race," he said.
Now the two men, despite missing out to meet at the London marathon on Sunday, are set to clash at the Tokyo Games in 2021. It will be their fifth meeting over the marathon distance. Kipchoge has won all four previous shows.
"It's true, Bekele beat me several times on the track. But I have won all the races in the marathon," said Kipchoge.
Kipchoge became only the second Kenyan after Wanjiru to win an Olympic marathon.(04/27/2020) ⚡AMP
The NN Running Team has possibly the most stacked lineup of long distance runners in the world. With world, European and national record-holders, and names like Eliud Kipchoge and Kenenise Bekele, the team uniform can often be seen in the lead at the world’s biggest races. NN Running recently released a min-documentary called The long run, an inside view, which takes viewers into several training camps and focuses on the importance of the long run, which is an integral part of every marathon training plan.
It’s a brief look at what training is like for the world’s best marathoners, and it has great lessons for runners of all levels.
The NN Running Team doesn’t have one set training location, so the film looks at groups in Kenya, Ethiopia and Uganda. In the doc, Kipchoge and Bekele are interviewed in their home countries of Kenya and Ethiopia, respectively, along with Kenyan half-marathon world record-holder, Geoffrey Kamworor, and Joshua Cheptegei, the 5K and 10K world record-holder from Uganda.
Switzerland’s Julien Wanders, the European half-marathon record-holder, is also a member of the NN team, and shots of his training in Iten, Kenya, are included in the film. Selly Chepyego is the only woman from the team featured in the documentary. In 2019, Chepyego, who is from Kenya, came in third at the Berlin Marathon, and earlier this year she was fourth at the Tokyo Marathon.
When we see videos of elite athletes in training, a lot of the time they’re shots from hard workouts on the track. Sometimes there are clips from long runs, but that training session is never the focus. This mini-documentary shows just how important the long run is, especially for marathoners.
“[Marathon training] is basically 90 to 95 per cent mileage,” Victor Chumo says in the film. “If you don’t do it, the chances that you are going to perform [are] less likely. That’s where you find some athletes who are less prepared. When he reaches around 35 to 40K, that’s when he faces some kind of problems or challenges.”
Kipchoge says his group rarely talks during their long runs, because it is a time to “concentrate on yourself.” Just like any other session, the long run requires your focus and attention. Wanders emphasizes that the long run is not a race, and although it can be tempting to run fast and push your training partners, it’s absolutely necessary to hold back and save your speed for another day. They also mention that, rain or shine, the long run always gets done. This is one of the most important parts of marathon training, so you can’t skip it.
Even if you don’t run marathons, there are lessons to be learned from this film, but besides the lessons, it’s just a fun look into the lives (or at least one part of the lives) of some of the world’s best runners.(04/27/2020) ⚡AMP
Restriction introduced by the government to fight the spread of Covid-19 such as social distancing and banning of social gatherings has forced several athletes to take a much closer interest in their side activities.
One such athlete is world 5,000m silver medalist Margaret Chelimo. Now getting used to training individually she has found herself with more me-time at her farm in Kapng’etich in Nandi County and spends it farming.
She said that after her morning run, she goes to her farm where she has planted maize, beans, sugar cane and other crops.
When Nation Sport visited her on Sunday she was busy on her sugarcane plantation. This planting season she dedicated two acres of land to the sugar producing cash crop, a new venture for her she duly informed.
She is among many other farmers in the region who are now abandoning the traditional maize farming which they feel doesn’t bring any value to them due to poor market prices.
“I have decided to venture into sugar cane farming because I have been planting maize for a long time and I’m not getting any profits,” said Chelimo.
Of course the farming activity comes after her individual run to keep her body in shape for the season, when it will resume. Remember athletics is her main bread and butter business at this stage in her life.
Chelimo bagged silver in last year’s Doha World Athletics Championships women’s 5,000m after clocking 14:27.49 behind race winner, compatriot Hellen Obiri who timed 14:26.72.
In 2018, she won silver for Kenya in the Gold Coast Commonwealth Games 5,000m, finishing second to Obiri after crossing the line in 15:15.28. Chelimo started the season explosively, winning the BOclassic Silvesterlauf 5,000m race in 15:30.
In January, Chelimo stunned World Cross Country champion Obiri to win the Cross Internacional de Italica in Seville, Spain after cutting the tape in 28:37 ahead of compatriot Beatrice Chebet (28:49).
High in confidence she was all primed to run in the Doha Diamond League series 3,000m race on April 17 before the athletics calendar was suspended following the outbreak of coronavirus.
The 2020 Tokyo Olympics was her big target this season before the Games were pushed to next year.(04/27/2020) ⚡AMP
The two were due to compete on Sunday in London marathon (April 26), but the race, like many across the globe, has been postponed. Organizers have picked on Oct. 4 as the new dates if the health situation allows.
Cheruiyot, who has recovered from a tendon injury, which ruled her out of the Berlin marathon last year, says despite there being no competition across the sports spectrum, she was happy to be healthy and said she will live to compete again soon.
"Today, there will be no London marathon, but we will be back in action soon. Stay positive and stay healthy," said Cheruiyot on Sunday from Eldoret.
On his side, Kipchoge, who is unable to train with his teammates, says the virus will be defeated and sports will flourish yet again.
"We will return to action stronger and with a lot of hope," said Kipchoge.
"The important thing is to remain focused and disciplined. We have a war to fight against the coronavirus, but we have a responsibility to remain healthy and safe."
The two were also named in the Kenya team for the Tokyo 2020 Olympics before it was pushed back to 2021.
But with no guarantees, Cheruiyot hopes to remain injury free and will always honor a call to represent the country in the Olympics. However, Cheruiyot is non-committal on her fitness when the new dates for the Tokyo Olympics.
"One year is a long time and we want to be in our best shape and compete. But we will be patient and see how the season unfolds. The important thing for now is to remain safe, there are no immediate plans on sports and we have to live with that. Until then, we just train as often as we can under the health guidelines," he said.
Already the London Marathon race director Hugh Brasher has said that while he hopes the London Marathon will take place as normal on Oct. 4, it might have to be slimmed down to an elite only race.
"But in today's society, you can never say never. We are trying to stay really agile and to keep scenario planning. And at the moment, I don't want to discount anything until it becomes really impossible," he said.
Brasher also would not confirm whether Kipchoge and Ethiopia's Kenenisa Bekele had signed up for October's revised race.(04/27/2020) ⚡AMP
Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, we have moved the 2020 New Balance Nationals Outdoor to the new dates of Thursday-Sunday, July 16-19. These are tentative dates and depend totally on the guidance of national, state and local governments. We will continue to post updates as further definitive information is available (hopefully next 2-4 weeks). We continue to be cautiously optimistic we can host the meet on the new scheduled dates and wish everyone good health and safety in the meantime.
Registration was opened for the meet two weeks ago. Please go HERE to register. While we have opened registration, we aren’t accepting payments at this time.
Once it is confirmed that the meet will indeed take place, entry fees will then be activated. Registrants will be notified of due dates and changes as they arise. Notification will be via the email system in Athletic.net using the email address on your account. It is important that registrants check the email address you have in the Athletic.net system to ensure that it is accurate.
Another of the most important things to know about qualifying for NBNO is that we have adopted standards to allow for using marks from the 2020 indoor and 2019 outdoor seasons for qualifying. Please go to the updated STANDARDS page for more information on that.
We have also relaxed entry standards for the freshman events.
Other details regarding the meet remain the same at this time. You can view those by going to the MEET INFO page.
We hope next month that we’ll be able to confirm our hosting of the meet. Meanwhile, again, good health and safety to all.(04/27/2020) ⚡AMP
(Editor’s note: I asked my friend Larry Allen to give me his overview of the situation back east due to COVID-19. Larry is a lifetime runner and is a cancer survivor. Him and his wife live in New York City and has a weekend house in Connecticut.)
“Hi Bob, Sorry to be so slow to respond. We are in Connecticut at our weekend place. We were without internet for 10 days, our cell service is nil and our phone only functions with working internet. It was a real catch22 to find a way to get a service appointment, certainly because we were untethered digitally but more so because the ISP was overwhelmed and.short staffed. We finally got through on Twitter and now with a new router & modem I think we’re back in the modern world, to the extent we can bear to be.
"My oncologist and my internist essentially booted me out of the city in early March due to my still compromised immune system. I was due to have a CT scan and some other post-chemo exams a month ago, just to be certain all was still ok and that I had no reoccurrence of the cancer. Unfortunately the Doctors won’t let me near a hospital, they explained that the risk to go without followup exams for the near term was less than the risk of showing up at the hospital and possibly being infected with my immune system as it is.
"We are safe here for now. Concerned about the food supply and basic services but there’s not much more to be done than hunkering down and hoping that the trends begin to turn.
"I’ve been able to continue running six days, 25-35 miles a week. I try to go to the rail trail near our home which is usually my peaceful place. The odd hybrid bureaucratic nature of the shared federal/state/local responsibility for the trail has spared it from being closed as is the case for all other state and local parks with less complicated governance. The bad news is this: there are huge numbers of people suffering from “cabin fever” in lovely spring weather after a long winter and too few places for people to get out for some exercise. Naturally the rail trail has gotten too crowded for safety so other than going at dawn or dusk or during a rainstorm it’s not really an option. I guess it’s somewhat of a blessing that there are far fewer cars on the road so hitting the pavement is less treacherous than it might be. One has to assuming e the air quality is better too.
"As you know we live very close to Central Park and it is one of my favorite places to run. I really enjoyed running with you there last year.
"People are still running in Central Park. I don’t know how but the very thought of it makes me very nervous now."
(Photos: me a couple of weeks back, enjoying a run with Bob in the park last Feb 2019 and Bob and I at a Speak Easy the night before. Bob's wife Catherine took the shot. When life was normal.)(04/26/2020) ⚡AMP
Today was the day I was supposed to run the Big Sur International Marathon. With all major races cancelled or postponed due to the Covid-19 pandemic I am reading about all my fellow runners moving forward with their own virtual races. I did about 10 miles this weekend, but got too bored on my treadmill to go a full marathon. Looking forward to when we can race for real again.(04/26/2020) ⚡AMP
2020 was postponed and moved from April to November 15th. This is a confirmed date. The Big Sur Marathon follows the most beautiful coastline in the world and, for runners, one of the most challenging. The athletes who participate may draw inspiration from the spectacular views, but it takes major discipline to conquer the hills of Highway One on the...more...
Runners who do choose to cancel will have guaranteed entry into the 2021 race.
The Chicago Marathon—scheduled for Sunday, October 11, this year—has announced a cancellation option for runners registered for the 2020 race. The policy is not new for the race, but this year is slightly different with the uncertainties arising from the coronavirus pandemic, which has put many races this year in jeopardy because of the risks related to mass gatherings.
Chicago organizers sent an email (obtained by Runner’s World) to entrants on Tuesday announcing the option to cancel would be available starting May 5. Runners will have the option to cancel and earn guaranteed entry to the 2021 race. At the moment, there is no deadline by which runners have to cancel.
However, there are several caveats runners should note when making their decisions.
The move is one we’ll likely see from various races around the world that are canceling or postponing their events due to the coronavirus. The Boston Marathon and the London Marathon were both postponed until the fall, and the Berlin Marathon will not happen as scheduled because of coronavirus restrictions in place in Germany.(04/26/2020) ⚡AMP
Running the Bank of America Chicago Marathon is the pinnacle of achievement for elite athletes and everyday runners alike. On race day, runners from all 50 states andmore than 100 countries will set out to accomplish a personal dream by reaching the finish line in Grant Park. The Bank of America Chicago Marathon is known for its flat and fast...more...
The 2020 Boston Marathon was postponed due to the coronavirus. Could it be canceled altogether?
Marty Walsh is "hopeful" the race will happen in September. Some experts aren't sure it should.
For the first time since the 19th century, April will pass in Boston without a Boston Marathon.
Rather than cheering crowds, the course was overcome by eery silence this Patriots’ Day, after the 124th edition of the race was postponed until Sept. 14 due to the coronavirus outbreak.
Boston Mayor Marty Walsh has said he hopes runners and fans will still embrace the “once-in-a-lifetime” late-summer race. But as a clearer picture begins to emerge of the steps needed to effectively beat back the virus, it’s increasingly unclear whether the 2020 marathon can — or should — happen at all.
“I do not think such a race will be wise in September,” said Glen Weyl, a co-author of a report released this week by Harvard’s Safra Center for Ethics on the steps needed to combat the pandemic in order to safely return to normalcy.
The Safra Center report and others, released by both right-leaning and left-leaning groups, broadly recommend a similar path forward: While certain nonessential businesses may be allowed to reopen in phases as COVID-19 testing and tracing is ramped up, bans against mass public gatherings — like concerts and sporting events — should remain in place until mass immunity or a vaccine is developed, which is expected to take at least another year.
Given its usual pool of 30,000 runners and hundreds of thousands of spectators along the 26.2-mile course, it’s hard to foresee the Boston Marathon going forward in any recognizable way in September, according to Weyl.
“Anything even close to the current format could not work,” he told Boston.com.
Walsh is aware of the bleak projection; in a recent CNN interview, he acknowledged the possibility that concerts and sporting events may not be able to resume in Boston until 2021.
And during a press conference Wednesday, he noted the recent cancellation of the Berlin Marathon — a 60,000-person race scheduled two weeks later than the Boston Marathon and in a country with more widespread testing — after city officials extended a ban on all events of more than 5,000 people through Oct. 24.
“To be honest, we haven’t had those conversations yet,” the mayor said during a press conference Wednesday, when asked about the chances that the Boston Marathon would happen as planned in September.
“I am hopeful that we will be able to have the marathon, because certainly it felt on Monday there was a void in the city of Boston,” he added. “But we will have more conversations and discussions.”
The Boston Athletic Association, which organizes the annual race, says it will follow the guidance of city and state officials on matters of public health and safety, particularly when it comes to the coronavirus pandemic.
“We will remain flexible to address and explore all factors with public officials as we plan for the race,” the BAA told Boston.com in a statement. “Our priority remains the health and well-being of members of our community.”
The marathon has never been canceled in its history. Only in 1918, due to World War I, was the annual Patriots’ Day race changed to a military relay race. In the midst of the coronavirus pandemic, the usually 38,000-runner Tokyo Marathon last month narrowed down its field to 200 elite runners and advised spectators against gathering along the route.
Walsh, however, has dismissed the notion of stripping the Boston Marathon of its defining characteristics.
“That’s not the Boston Marathon,” he said last month, when asked about restricting the race to elite runners. “We’re an inclusive marathon. The Boston Marathon is for everyone.”
While the Berlin race will not take place in September “as planned,” the Boston Marathon isn’t the only major event still slated for this year.
Major marathons in London and Madrid, originally scheduled in April, have also been postponed until the fall. And the New York City Marathon is still officially planned to go forward on Nov. 1.
Experts say certain social distancing measures could be incrementally repealed this summer in the so-called second phase of the coronavirus response. However, they agree that bans on large gatherings will be the last to be lifted.
Scott Gottlieb, the former Food and Drug Association commissioner under President Donald Trump, wrote in a recent report that while “the majority of schools, universities, and businesses” could reopen during the second phase, “social gatherings should continue to be limited to fewer than 50 people wherever possible,” until a vaccine has been approved.
The liberal-leaning Center for American Progress made a similar recommendation.
“Gatherings of more than 50 people must continue to be banned,” the think tank wrote in a report earlier this month. “Once herd immunity has been achieved through mass vaccination, all remaining restrictions can be lifted.”
Given the timeline for developing a treatment for the disease, epidemiologists at Harvard’s Chan School of Public Health estimated in a report last week that the bans on large gatherings may not be “fully relaxed by early- to mid-2021,” with intermittent social distancing possibly needed until 2022.
“It depends on the data and information we have available to us and where we are with the coronavirus, what cases are still active, how much testing do we have, how many people are immune to the virus,” Walsh told CNN last week.
There are also some concerns about a second wave of coronavirus hitting in the fall in conjunction with flu season when the weather gets colder.
In a recent New York Times interview, bioethicist Zeke Emmanuel ridiculed the notion that the largest gatherings — specifically conferences, concerts, and sporting events — could be put off until later in the year.
“When people say they’re going to reschedule this conference or graduation event for October 2020, I have no idea how they think that’s a plausible possibility,” Emmanuel said. “I think those things will be the last to return. Realistically we’re talking fall 2021 at the earliest.”(04/25/2020) ⚡AMP
The 124th Boston Marathon originally scheduled for April 20 was postponed to September 14 and then May 28 it was cancelled for 2020. The next Boston Marathon is scheduled for April 19, 2021. Among the nation’s oldest athletic clubs, the B.A.A. was established in 1887, and, in 1896, more than half of the U.S. Olympic Team at the first modern...more...
The decision was made after the Germany government banned group gatherings of more than 5,000 people until after October 24.
On April 21, the Berlin Marathon announced that the race will not happen as planned on September 27, due to coronavirus restrictions on group sizes in Berlin.
The announcement did not mention whether the race is canceled outright or will be postponed for a later date.
As the COVID-19 pandemic continues to impact a huge number of lives across the globe, large races set for the fall have begun to seem less and less likely to happen. And on April 21, the unfortunate news came: the Berlin Marathon, scheduled for September 27, has been canceled due to coronavirus restrictions.
According to an announcement on the race’s event page, the marathon can’t be run as scheduled because of an ordinance set in place by the German government prohibiting all events with more than 5,000 people from now until October 24.
The announcement did not mention whether the race is canceled outright or will be postponed for a later date. It also didn’t mention whether or not registered runners will be able to receive a refund for their race bib or roll over their registration to 2021.
The announcement did not mention whether the race is canceled outright or will be postponed for a later date. It also didn’t mention whether or not registered runners will be able to receive a refund for their race bib or roll over their registration to 2021.
“We will now deal with the consequences, coordinate the further steps, and inform you as soon as we can. Let us remain strong together,” said the Berlin Marathon event team in an Instagram post.
Eliminating the Berlin Marathon from the fall race schedule is especially sad news for the running community, as the fast course has hosted spectacular performances over the years, including Eliud Kipchoge’s current marathon world record of 2:01:39.
The cancellation also puts into question the likelihood of whether the other World Major Marathons—Boston, London, Chicago, and New York City—will happen as planned later this year.
The Chicago Marathon, still scheduled to run on October 11, recently announced a cancellation option for runners registered for the 2020 race. Meanwhile, Boston and London—which were originally planned for this month but postponed until September 14 and October 4, respectively—as well as New York City, scheduled for November 1, have not yet made announcements about coronavirus-related schedule changes.(04/25/2020) ⚡AMP
2020 Marathon has been cancelled. The story of the BERLIN-MARATHON is a story of the development of road running. When the first BERLIN-MARATHON was started on 13th October 1974 on a minor road next to the stadium of the organisers‘ club SC Charlottenburg Berlin 286 athletes had entered. The first winners were runners from Berlin: Günter Hallas (2:44:53), who...more...
The International Olympic Committee (IOC) has been forced to backtrack after irritating the Japanese Government and Tokyo 2020 by suggesting Prime Minister Shinzō Abe had agreed to cover additional costs following the postponement of the Olympic Games.
In a question and answer-style statement on its website yesterday, the IOC said Abe had "agreed that Japan will continue to cover the costs it would have done under the terms of the existing agreement for 2020, and the IOC will continue to be responsible for its share of the costs".
"For the IOC, it is already clear that this amounts to several hundred millions of dollars of additional costs," the IOC added, repeating a comment made by President Thomas Bach in an interview with a German newspaper last weekend.
While Japan is obligated to cover added costs in the Host City Contract for the 2020 Olympics and Paralympics it signed with the IOC in 2013, the statement prompted chief cabinet secretary Yoshihide Suga to deny any agreement had been reached.
"It's not true there has been an agreement on an additional cost burden," he said.
The IOC has since deleted the statement, which has sparked an open conflict with organisers, referencing Abe and an agreement regarding the additional costs, reported by Kyodo News to be around $3 billion (£2.4 billion/€2.8 billion).
Tokyo 2020 spokesperson Masa Takaya said organisers had asked the IOC to remove the comment, telling a teleconference involving Japanese media that it was "not appropriate for the Prime Minister's name to be quoted in this manner".
In an update to the post today, the IOC said: "The IOC and the Japanese side, including the Tokyo 2020 Organising Committee, will continue to assess and discuss jointly the respective impacts caused by the postponement."
The u-turn from the IOC adds to already considerable uncertainty surrounding numerous areas of the organisation of the rescheduled Games and will be viewed by some as the IOC's latest communications error.
The IOC faced criticism from athletes and others for continuing to insist Tokyo 2020 would take place as planned this year, despite the rapid spread of the COVID-19 virus, which eventually led to the postponement of the Games until 2021.
Tokyo 2020 chief executive Toshirō Mutō had previously admitted the decision will result in "massive" extra costs.
The IOC has conceded adjustments will be required to reduce additional expenditure, while John Coates, chair of the IOC Coordination Commission for Tokyo 2020, said last week those involved in the organisation of the Games would assess "all opportunities to explore the scope and service levels" at the rearranged event to find savings.
Coates also suggested some of the "nice haves" at the event, such as live celebration sites across Japan, would have to be cut to save additional costs.(04/25/2020) ⚡AMP
New dates for the 2020 U.S. Olympic Team Trials — Track & Field are set, USATF announced today. The event will take place June 18–27, 2021 in Eugene, Oregon.
The Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games were postponed due to the novel coronavirus, thereby necessitating the postponement of the corresponding Olympic Trials. USATF worked closely with the U.S. Olympic & Paralympic Committee and TrackTown USA to secure the new dates.
The competition schedule will remain much the same. While there is a possibility that some of the timings of the competition windows may shift, the events taking place on each day will not change.
The schedule of events can be found here. Existing ticket customers will have their tickets automatically rolled over to the new dates in 2021. Customers who wish to request a refund will be able to do so at TrackTown20.com beginning on Wednesday, April 22, 2020 at 9:00 a.m. Pacific time.
Ticketing policies and procedures for refund requests will also be available at TrackTown20.com on that day. This refund process will remain open for 90 days. The Olympic Trials will be contested in a new, state-of-the-art Hayward Field at the University of Oregon.The 2020 U.S. Olympic Team Trials – Track & Field will be presented across NBC Sports’ numerous platforms. Broadcast information will be released later.(04/24/2020) ⚡AMP
The race director of the London Marathon has refused to rule out staging the event as an elite-only race in the autumn if social distancing rules make it impossible to run as normal.
Hugh Brasher told the Guardian that while organisers still hoped to hold the event with 45,000 mass participants on 4 October, they were now scenario-planning around 10 other options because of the global pandemic.
“The flame is still burning,” said Brasher. “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 masses to take into account when making any decision.”
When asked directly whether the London Marathon – which was due to take place this Sunday before being pushed back – might have to be only for elite athletes if social restrictions had not eased completely, Brasher replied: “Honestly, I don’t know. But in today’s society, you can never say never. We are trying to stay really agile and to keep scenario planning. And at the moment, I don’t want to discount anything until it becomes really impossible.”
Last month’s Tokyo marathon was staged as an elite-only race, with the field reduced to just 300 runners and the streets largely deserted. Most major spring marathons subsequently decided to postpone their races to the autumn – but those events also look in doubt with no vaccine in sight and, ominously, the Berlin marathon has already cancelled its race in September.
“Our decision will be made by the back end of August at the latest,” explained Brasher. “It will be based on the government guidelines, and what we and society think is right and what feels right.”
Brasher would not confirm whether Eliud Kipchoge and Kenenisa Bekele, who were due to meet on Sunday in a clash for the ages, had signed up for October’s revised race. However he told the Guardian: “We always want to get the most competitive race. This was going to be the 40th London marathon, and its greatest race. It was going to be spectacular. But we want to make October 4 spectacular too. So that’s what our focus is.”
Last year the London Marathon raised £66.4m for charities, again making it the biggest single-day fundraising event in Britain. And while Sunday’s race will not take place, organisers are still hoping that thousands of people will spend the day raising and donating money for charities as part of a nationwide 2.6 Challenge – in which people tackle something related to the numbers two and six.
More than £1.5m has already been raised for the campaign, and Brasher said he hoped it would prove a lifeline for many charities which usually rely heavily on the race to fund their work.
“The London Marathon is normally about so many scripts and so many stories,” said Brasher. “It’s the greatest athletes in the world with the everyday athlete – who are doing this incredible challenge with the gods of the sport such as Kipchoge, Bekele and Brigid Kosgei, on the same day, on the same course, with the same crowd. In fact, the everyday person gets more people watching them. That’s the incredible thing. And, of course, they are raising so much money for charity too.”
Keizo Yamada, who won the 1953 Boston Marathon and last ran the race in 2009, died of natural causes on April 2, his wife said Thursday. He was 92.
Yamada, who was born in Akita Prefecture in 1927, spent the war years as a youth in Manchuria and after being repatriated competed for Japan in its first postwar Olympics, the 1952 Helsinki Games.
His finishing time of 2 hours, 18 minutes and 51 seconds in Boston was considered the world's fastest marathon at the time until it was found the course failed to meet the standard distance. His triumph was the subject of the Japanese movie "Shinzo Yaburi no Oka" ("Heartbreak Hill").
"His victory during the recovery period after the war energized the Japanese people," two-time Boston Marathon champion Toshihiko Seko said in a statement. "It's an honor to have won the same race as Mr. Yamada."
After retiring from competition, Yamada continued running marathons and took part in the Boston Marathon, running in 15 straight until his final one in 2009. That year, Yamada, who ran roughly 340 full marathons in his career, announced he would run no more.
Yuki Kawauchi, who won in Boston in 2018, also paid tribute to Yamada.
"He was a giant among Japanese legends. Despite being an elite runner, he devoted his life to promoting the marathon," Kawauchi said.
The 33-year-old Kawauchi, who has competed in more than 100 full marathons, did so for most of his career while serving as a civil servant in Saitama Prefecture, earning him the nickname "citizen runner."
"Mr. Yamada initiated the citizens' marathon boom with his activities throughout the nation," Kawauchi said. "One of my targets is to run in 340 marathons by my 50th birthday."(04/24/2020) ⚡AMP
A north-east man completed a 106-mile ultra-marathon in his garden- just seven weeks after undergoing major heart surgery.
Mike Raffan ran the extraordinary distance in just 27 and a half hours.
He lives near Collieston and started the effort at 6 am last Friday before finishing just after 9am on Saturday with short 10-minute breaks every so often.
To succeed with this, he mapped out a 100m route (16 laps per mile) in his garden.
He had only recently recovered from a serious heart operation.
Last year Mike noticed that he was finding it hard to breathe while running uphill, as though there was a weight on his chest. Over time, it got harder and harder and he sought medical advice.
He said: “Tests revealed that I have an anomalous right coronary artery from the opposite sinus with an intermural circuit, which basically means I was born with my right artery growing out of the wrong place.
“The surgery I needed was too specialist to be done in Aberdeen, so I had to go to Glasgow Golden Jubilee Hospital. I had the operation on February 25 and was out of hospital after just three days.
“The nurses on the ward were not sure about discharging me so early as they had never let anyone out in less than four days – the preference is seven. However, I passed all their fitness tests and the surgeon said it was OK for me to go.”
Mike has so far raised more than £1,300 for the Glasgow Golden Jubilee Hospital, as a thank you to the medical team who looked after him during his surgery.
After just 10 days of being home, Mike went for a slow two-mile run with his wife Annette keeping an eye on him.
“Every time I went out, I felt I had to hold my chest. The rehab physiotherapist told me this was due to the impact and that my chest bones had not fused together properly, so I started doing a lot of cycling instead to get to get my fitness back.
“It’s only been in the last two weeks I have started running properly again. I relied on muscle memory and stubbornness to get me through the challenge. The run was slow. Stopping every 50m to turn around was like doing a bleep test for 27 hours.”(04/24/2020) ⚡AMP
Kenya's Flomena Cheyech, a former Commonwealth Games champion, was looking forward to announcing her return from maternity leave at the Suzhou Half Marathon in China on March 15.
However, she cut short her preparations as the world battled coronavirus. However, a month down the line, there is no sign of sports competition returning, but that has not meant Cheyech would stop training.
"I have focused on running the marathon again in 2020, and I will continue training. It is a challenge at the moment because of restrictions, but once this health condition has been lifted, I will head back to China for another race, whenever that is," Cheyech said on Friday from Eldoret.
Her focus is now health and fitness for the Singapore Marathon in December, which she believes will have offered her enough time to recover and shake off the rust from two years of having no competition.
"I do hope everything will be back to normal by the time we run at the Singapore Marathon in December," she said.
Cheyech previously ran in Singapore, finishing second and was fourth at the London world marathon championships in 2017. She also won the Saitama Marathon back in 2017.
The 38-year-old has not raced since 2018, but she feels the long delay occasioned by COVID-19, is a blessing to her.
"It was right to have all sporting events pushed back for a good future to curb the spread of the virus. Everyone will return stronger and more competitive, which means that you must be in your best form to challenge for a title," said Cheyech.
The former world half-marathon athlete is not crying over the loss of opportunity to gauge herself in Suzhou Half Marathon. Still, instead, she rejoices at the prospect of challenging for a spot in the Kenya team to the Tokyo 2021 Olympic Games or the 2022 Commonwealth Games.
With training camps closed, Cheyech spends most of her time at home after she has done her morning run.
"Athletics is our job, but with most activities canceled or postponed, we have no alternative but to do some parenting and help our children with their studies," said Cheyech.
Cheyech, who defeated compatriot Caroline Kilel to win her first gold for Kenya at the Commonwealth Games in Glasgow, Scotland in 2014, is hopeful Kenya will retain the marathon titles in Tokyo and at the Commonwealth Games in Birmingham in 2022.(04/24/2020) ⚡AMP
The Singapore Marathon is an annual international marathon race which is held in December in the city of Singapore. It is an IAAF Gold Label Road Race. It has grown significantly since its inaugural race in 1982 – the 2013 event attracted a total of 60,000 entrants for all categories. There are four separate categories of competition: the full marathon,...more...
Olympic champion Mo Farah has said the delayed Games could work in his favor and boost his chances of winning gold in Tokyo.
The Olympics has been been postponed until next year due to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic and is set to begin on July 23, 2021.
Farah, who announced his ambition to compete at the Games in November after his retirement from track athletics, said the postponement has given him more time to prepare.
"It is probably, in my honest opinion, not a bad thing for me because it gives you a bit more time to train for it, to do more races, because I would have gone from the marathon and then the following year straight to the track," he told Athletics Weekly.
"Obviously, I'm not a spring chicken any more. You take what you can from it. You'll definitely see me doing a similar thing to what you've seen before.
"Do a few races and get strong and get fit and then from there go on to the track and use the track leading up to the Tokyo Olympics."
"I'm not thinking about marathons, to be honest with you. I'm just thinking, Tokyo."(04/23/2020) ⚡AMP
The Rock ‘n’ Roll Marathon Series announced Monday the new Rock ‘n’ Roll Virtual Running (VR) Series, giving walkers and runners a start line from anywhere in the world amid the coronavirus outbreak.
The new series will be offered through the new Rock ‘n’ Roll Virtual Running Club (VRC), an online platform allowing runners to race, engage and connect with a new series of weekly races, challenges and rewards.
“For over twenty years, the Rock ‘n’ Roll Marathon Series community has been Bringing Fun to the Run through a mixture of music, community and celebrating achievement,” says Andrew Messick, President & CEO for The IRONMAN Group.
“At our core, it is about finding fun and motivation in the moments that challenge us. While this seems truer and more important than ever before, this has always been the brand’s heartbeat. We believe that this new Rock ‘n’ Roll Virtual Running Club will enable the running community to stay active, find structure and reach their finish lines in a positive, flexible and safe environment as they come together through a common passion.”
The Rock ‘n’ Roll VRC will offer challenges and virtual races in a variety of distances for all levels of runners and walkers. The first virtual race, Rock ‘n’ Roll VR1, will be a 5K run and will be open to anyone in the world. Starting this week, virtual races will begin weekly on Fridays at 5 p.m. ET and close Sundays at 8 p.m. ET.
To compete for and earn rewards, participants will track their activity by a GPS and heart rate monitor and upload the information to their member dashboard. The VRC is compatible with many different wearable technology devices.
Rock ‘n’ Roll VRC will also have other features that give users access to playlists, coaching, nutritional information and more.
More information about the Rock ‘n’ Roll Virtual Running Series and Rock ‘n’ Roll Virtual Running Club are available on www.runrocknrollvr.com.(04/23/2020) ⚡AMP
Featuring three days of free concerts on the beach, 13.1 miles of live bands and a spectacular boardwalk finish, it's no wonder why over 20,000 runners and walkers participate in the Rock 'n' Roll Virginia Beach Half Marathon. Warm ocean breezes, clean sandy beaches and rolling surf provide a stunning backdrop to this Labor Day Weekend extravaganza. The half marathon...more...
The two of the world best marathon runners, will be at their homes in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia and Eldoret, Kenya with their families.
Kipchoge reminisces that it was this week seven years ago that he made his debut in a marathon in Hamburg, Germany, clocking an impressive 2:05.30.
"On this day in 2013, I ran the very first marathon of my life. The memories of my debut in Hamburg are actually really good, I won this marathon in 2:05:30. It has been a beautiful journey so far," Kipchoge said on Wednesday.
But with the prospect of the two clashing in London on Sunday now impossible, Kipchoge will focus on remaining fit for future competitions.
London would have been their fifth time racing together in a marathon. Kipchoge has won all four previous encounters.
However, for Bekele (2:01:41), he believes a clash between the two would serve as the highlight of the track and field program, especially should the pair be included in their respective teams for the 2021 Tokyo Olympic Games.
It's anticipated Kenenisa will return to the Olympics after his shock exclusion by the Ethiopian Athletics Federation for Rio 2016.
Kipchoge has already secured his spot in the Kenya team and will do everything to defend his title.
"One year is not a long time," Bekele, 37, a three-time Olympic champion, albeit on the track, told the Olympic Channel regarding the Games postponement to July 2021.
"I hope I can stay in good shape, disciplined, because one year is just tomorrow. The most important thing is to stay healthy and stay fit."
Bekele, who has overcome an Achilles tendon injury, believes he can shave more than a minute off his personal best, and even lower the official world record to less than two hours.
The current mark of 2:01.39 was set by Kipchoge in Berlin in 2018.
Only Kipchoge has run under two hours, albeit in closed conditions and with aids, at the Vienna course back in October, where he posted a time of 1:59.40.
"I'm sure, it's possible to run that time [two hours]," Bekele told the Olympic Channel.
"I can run maybe faster than the world record, maybe close to two hours or something. It's down to the weather conditions and a good course."(04/23/2020) ⚡AMP
Gladys Cherono has been forced to defer her dream for a fourth Berlin Marathon title with the 2017 World marathon champion, Geoffrey Kirui also putting on hold his debut in the race.
The organisers of the race that was due for September 27 have been forced to cancel the marathon after the Berlin Senate, the executive body that governs the city, extended the ban on gatherings of more than 5,000 participants until October 24 due to the novel coronavirus.
"We have learned from the press conference of the Berlin Senate on April 21, 2020, that according to the Containment Ordinance, all events with more than 5,000 persons will be prohibited until October 24, 2020. This applies to many of our events, but especially to the Berlin Marathon,” said a statement on the event’s website.
This is the first cancellation of a World Marathon Majors race this year owing to coronavirus, and it raises questions about the likelihood of other races taking place around the same time, including the rescheduled London Marathon, which is to take place on October 4.
Cherono, the 2014 World Half Marathon champion, was due to make her fifth appearance in Berlin where she won on her debut in 2015 before capturing the title again in 2017 and 2018.
Last year, the 36-year-old Cherono failed to finish the race after she fell sick just before the race.
Perhaps Cherono’s memorable victory was in 2018 when she triumphed with the fourth fastest time in marathon by then of 2:18:11, which still remains the course record.
“You can only understand what is happening across the world as nations battle to not only control the spread of Covid-19 but also get a cure for the disease,” said Cherono. “It’s impossible to plan for a race until October or November there.”
Cherono, who is now training alone in Eldoret under her coach-cum-husband Joseph Kwambok, said if all goes well she could compete in London due October or New York City Marathon planned for November 1.(04/23/2020) ⚡AMP
2020 Marathon has been cancelled. The story of the BERLIN-MARATHON is a story of the development of road running. When the first BERLIN-MARATHON was started on 13th October 1974 on a minor road next to the stadium of the organisers‘ club SC Charlottenburg Berlin 286 athletes had entered. The first winners were runners from Berlin: Günter Hallas (2:44:53), who...more...
Col Bignell, from Co Down, said he intends to raise money for the health service with his 26.2-mile run.
Col Bignell had been looking forward to travelling to the capital this weekend for the world famous run, but with the event postponed to October, Mr Bignell decided to run in his living room, which will involved going back and forth thousands of times.
The 26-year-old, originally from London, dared his Facebook friends to give him the push to do it by giving his post 260 likes.
He said he intends to raise money for the health service with the 26.2-mile run.
“I just thought I’d give something a bit different a go,” he told the PA news agency.
“I’ve marked out the space and it’s around 12 foot, so I’ve worked out it’ll probably take me about 7,000 back and forth, which is quite a lot. I’ll be running laps of my front room around 11,500 times.
“But I’ve seen Tom Moore and the lady who did the stairs and thought, if they can do it, why not do something myself.”
Retail worker Mr Bignell said he wanted to mark the day he had been due to run his first marathon.
“The London Marathon is still going ahead in October, but I thought it would be nice to have something on that day to mark the day I would have done it.
“The new date is two days after my wedding, hopefully it all still goes ahead. My fiancee thinks I’m crazy.”
Mr Bignell said he is aiming to raise £260.20 for the NHS with the length of the marathon being 26.2 miles, and has already raised £140 towards that goal.
“Any more would be great but that is the minimum I am hoping to raise,” he said.(04/22/2020) ⚡AMP
‘Double-double’ Olympic champion says he has ‘lost a good friend’ after his old trainer and the former performance director at UK Athletics died at the weekend at the age of 60.
Four-time Olympic champion Sir Mo Farah says his “heart is broken” after former trainer Neil Black died suddenly at the weekend.
Black, the former performance director of UK Athletics, is believed to have died from natural causes at the age of 60, just six months after resigning from his position with the governing body.
The news, which was announced by UKA alongside a brief statement from his family, triggered an outpouring of emotional tributes from athletes past and present who worked with Black, with Farah among the very best to have benefited from his work after claiming consecutive 5,000m and 10,000m doubles at London 2012 and Rio 2016 during their time together.
“I have lost a good friend!” Farah wrote on Twitter. “Known him since I was 14 years old. Neil supported me all the way in my career since I was kid!! My heart is broken ... I wouldn’t be where I am today without Neil Black ... no one knew me like he did!! We lost a great man.”
Black’s death came as a shock to all of those who had worked with him, given he was last seen in the public eye at the 2019 World Athletics Championship in Doha last October. The disappointing tally of five British medals proved Team GB’s worst performance since 2005, and that combined with his support for controversial American trainer Alberto Salazar – the former trainer of Mo Farah who has been banned from athletics for four years by the United States Anti-Doping Agency for numerous drugs-related offences – cost Black his position.
However, such was the regard for his contribution towards the sport, UKA continued to use Black in an advisory role ahead of the postponed Tokyo Olympics.
The former UKA boss was described as a man who dedicated his life and passion to the sport after achieving his “dream job” and who was “like a second father” to budding young sportsmen and women making their way in track and field, with dozens of athletes posting messages of condolence on Twitter along with Farah.(04/22/2020) ⚡AMP
A man is running a 100km "ultra marathon" in his back garden to raise money for a baby hospice.
Mike Reid, from Hinckley in Leicestershire, has calculated he will need to complete about 4,000 laps to cover the distance.
The run is due to start on Saturday night and finish on Sunday afternoon.
The 37-year-old, who is raising money for Zoe's Place Baby Hospice in Coventry, said the ultra marathon "could prove quite challenging".
Mr Reid has completed a handful of ultra marathons in the past - including two for the same charity.
He said: "I have run long distances before and for long periods of time but never in such a confined space, so I think the limited area and frequent changes in direction could prove quite challenging.
"I also strained my calf on a run at the start of this week so I might have to potentially back off the pace a little."
He is running the "ultra marathon" in his garden due the restrictions in place to stop the spread of coronavirus.
He will be cheered on by his wife and two sons as he navigates his way around swings, toys, sheds and greenhouse in his 20m by 9m garden.
More than £500 has already been pledged by supporters for the hospice which is currently closed due to Covid-19.
He said: "I'm blown away by the generosity of people in such a small amount of time.
"This money is going to directly change the lives of children and families when they need it most."(04/22/2020) ⚡AMP
Two Oceans Marathon defending down-run champion, Bongmusa Mthembu, was keen to entrench his dominance in this year’s edition of the competition but the coronavirus stifled his advancement.
The Bulwer-born athlete was left dejected by the cancellation of the Two Oceans Marathon.
The marathon was set to take place last week where scores of local and international runners from were to come together with their sights set on supremacy in the Cape Town annual road running extravaganza but it wasn’t to be. Mthembu reigned supreme last year and was looking forward to dazzling once again.
“I was looking forward to the Two Oceans Marathon. I was disappointed when I heard that it had been cancelled. I worked very hard for that competition,” said the elite member of the Arthur Ford Running Club.
“I knew that many athletes were coming for me and I needed to do something special to step up. I even took a break from social media to focus on preparations for defending my crown. If I had my way, the race would have been postponed instead of cancelled. I know I speak for many runners who felt that the race should have been scheduled for another time this year.”
Mthembu is also the current holder of the Comrades Marathon down-run title after winning the ultra-marathon between Pietermaritzburg and Durban in 2018. He came close to winning the Comrades up-run last year but was pipped by Edward Mothibi. The Covid-19 outbreak has forced the organizers of this year’s Comrades to postpone the race.
“We respect the decision taken by South African government (placing the country on lockdown and suspending community gatherings). This is a natural disaster. The rest of the world is suffering from the same virus. Our preparations (for Comrades Marathon) have been distracted, we can’t hide that but we need to accept it. If we have to start afresh, let it be. The lives of South Africans are more important than the sport. This will pass and we will come back and compete again,” he added.
The decision about this year’s Comrades Marathon is yet to be taken. The SA biggest marathon was scheduled to take place on June 14. Mthembu will be eyeing his fourth title this year if the 2020 race happens. He has made the down-run his own but feels strongly that a race like the Two Oceans is a great precursor to the dash between Pietermaritzburg and Durban.
“The focus was purely on the Two Oceans and then thereafter I was going switch my mind towards the Comrades Marathon. I’m also a defending champion for the down-run. We will wait and see what the future holds. But as I said, the most important for now is to comply with the rules and regulations of the country. We can’t be worried about Comrades while the rest of the world is trying to fight this virus. Let us fight the virus first and then we can focus on running races,” Mthembu explained.
The 36-year-old distance specialist was the winner of the world famous race in 2014, 2017 and 2018. He made his Comrades debut back in 2006.
“I always want to be consistent, my brother. That’s what always pushes me to do well.(04/22/2020) ⚡AMP
2020 race cancelled. Cape Town’s most prestigious race, the 56km Old Mutual Two Oceans Ultra Marathon, takes athletes on a spectacular course around the Cape Peninsula. It is often voted the most breathtaking course in the world. The event is run under the auspices of the IAAF, Athletics South Africa (ASA) and Western Province Athletics (WPA). The Ultra Marathon celebrated...more...
The Berlin Marathon will not go ahead as planned in September after Germany banned public gatherings of over 5,000 people until Oct. 24 due to the coronavirus pandemic, organisers have said.
They did not specify if the event, at which the last seven men's world records have been set, would be postponed or cancelled altogether.
"We have learned from the press conference of the Berlin Senate on April 21, that according to the Containment Ordinance, all events with more than 5,000 persons will be prohibited until Oct. 24," organisers said in a statement.
"This applies to many of our events, but especially to the Berlin Marathon, which cannot take place on Sept. 26 and 27 as planned.
"We will now deal with the consequences of the official prohibition of our events, coordinate the further steps and inform you as soon as we can."
The 2019 Berlin marathon was won by Ethiopia's Kenenisa Bekele who missed creating a new world record by two seconds.
The London Marathon, which was scheduled to be held on Sunday, has been postponed to Oct. 4 due to the virus.
The coronavirus has infected 2.5 million people globally causing over 172,900 deaths.(04/22/2020) ⚡AMP
2020 Marathon has been cancelled. The story of the BERLIN-MARATHON is a story of the development of road running. When the first BERLIN-MARATHON was started on 13th October 1974 on a minor road next to the stadium of the organisers‘ club SC Charlottenburg Berlin 286 athletes had entered. The first winners were runners from Berlin: Günter Hallas (2:44:53), who...more...
Neil Black, the former performance director of UK Athletics, has died aged 60, the organization has confirmed.
Black, who worked closely with Mo Farah throughout his career, became performance director in September 2012.
He left his position in 2019 after coach Alberto Salazar was banned for four years for doping violations.
British four-time Olympic champion Farah paid tribute on Twitter, saying: "I have lost a good friend. Known him since I was 14 years old."
Farah added: "Neil supported me all the way in my career since I was kid. My heart is broken. I wouldn't be where I am today without Neil Black. No-one knew me like he did. We lost a great man."
A UK Athletics statement released on Tuesday said Black died at the weekend; the organisation said it was "shocked and saddened" at the news.
"Neil loved the sport of athletics and dedicated his life to supporting athletes - as a world-class physiotherapist, as head of sport science, and then in recent years as performance director for British Athletics," the statement continued.
Ed Warner, former UK Athletics chairman, described Black's death as "an immense loss to British high performance sport and to athletics in particular".
Warner added: "It was a great privilege to work with him, and to share the highs and lows of British teams through the cycles of major competitions. I'll particularly treasure our celebratory clinch in the mixed zone at the Olympic Stadium after the last session of the London 2017 World Championships.
"Neil bore the barbs of the critics that are an inevitable part of the job of any leader in elite performance sport with a grace and sense of humour that were truly a mark of the man.
"He wanted to lead the British teams into Tokyo. He won't now be able to cheer their successes there.
"But I am certain there are British athletes who will win medals in Olympics and championships to come who will look back with enormous gratitude at the role Neil played in preparing them for their success. He will be greatly missed."
Black was a physiotherapist with UK Athletics before moving up through the organisation's ranks.
He worked with Farah as the athlete won 5,000m and 10,000m gold at the London 2012 and Rio 2016 Olympics.
Black made the decision to step down as performance director in October 2019 after the banning of Salazar, who coached Farah from 2011 to 2017, and who was appointed as a consultant by UK Athletics in 2013.
UK Athletics had conducted a review in 2015 and said there was "no concern" about Salazar's link with Farah.
In 2015, following a BBC Panorama programme, the United States Anti-Doping Agency (Usada) began an investigation into how Salazar ran the Nike Oregon Project.
Salazar has always denied that the Nike Oregon Project permitted doping, saying he was "shocked" by Usada's findings, and he is appealing against the ban.
UK Athletics said that Black continued to work as an adviser to several athletes following his resignation.(04/22/2020) ⚡AMP
Due to the ongoing coronavirus (COVID-19) situation and in coordination with government officials, the Popular® Brooklyn Half and accompanying Rising New York Road Runners youth event, scheduled for May 16, have been canceled. The race is the largest half-marathon in the United States and was set to feature over 27,000 runners.
Registered runners will have the option of choosing either a full refund of their entry fee or guaranteed non-complimentary entry for next year’s Brooklyn Half in May 2021. Those runners who opt for entry into the 2021 Brooklyn Half will also receive 2021 TCS New York City Marathon qualifier credit and 2021 United Airlines NYC Half qualifier credit. All registered runners will receive an email in the coming days with more details.
Runners will still have the opportunity to run the 13.1-mile distance on their own in a safe and responsible way by entering the NYRR Virtual Brooklyn Half, part of the NYRR Volvo Virtual Racing Series Powered by Strava. The Virtual Brooklyn Half is free to enter for runners around the world and will take place from May 1 to May 17.
As the spread of COVID-19 continues globally, New York City is at the heart of the pandemic. Our community’s healthcare workers are on the front lines, risking their lives every day to help. Many of these same doctors, nurses, emergency responders, and medical professionals support runners at NYRR events. To help our heroes on the front lines, NYRR has recently donated $100,000 to the COVID-19 Emergency Relief Fund through the Mayor’s Fund to Advance New York City.
The running community can help as well by donating to the Mayor’s Fund in support of the many New Yorkers who need critical assistance during these unprecedented times.
In accordance with New York City’s recently announced restriction on public events through May 31, NYRR has also canceled the Italy Run 5M, and accompanying Rising New York Road Runners event, scheduled for Sunday, May 31. Registered runners will receive an email with details regarding their resolution options.
The cancellation of the Brooklyn Half and the Italy Run brings the total number of NYRR races impacted during the coronavirus crisis to nine. As NYRR continues to monitor the ongoing public health situation with government officials, future cancellations are likely to be announced. NYRR is also pausing all new registrations for races that are scheduled to take place through October 25, 2020.(04/21/2020) ⚡AMP
2020 race has been cancelled. The Popular Brooklyn Half (previously Airbnb), the largest half-marathon in the country, is an iconic 13.1-mile journey through the amazing borough of Brooklyn. The race starts near the Brooklyn Museum and ends with a finish like no other on the Coney Island boardwalk. This half marathon takes runners on a brand-new course through Grand Army...more...
AFC Wimbledon fan Kevin Webber was diagnosed with terminal prostate cancer five years ago and given only two years to live, he tells Sky Sports News reporter Jeremy Langdon.
That diagnosis changed Kevin's perspective on life and, when it came to making up a bucket list, the Marathon des Sables (MdS) was top.
The brutal Saharan ultra-marathon is notorious. Normally around 250 kilometers long, it means six days of suffering in desert heat with a pack on your back.
Kevin warmed up with two conventional marathons - against medical advice - while undergoing chemotherapy before running the MdS in 2016, 2017, 2018 and 2019.
This year would have been the fifth - and also would have made him the only person to run the event that many times with stage 4 cancer - but coronavirus forced the race in Morocco to be postponed early this month.
So Kevin decided to run it instead in his back garden and round his house in Epsom, Surrey.
He said: "I thought I'm not going to allow cancer to stop me doing things so equally I'm not going to allow coronavirus stopping me doing things either".
Kevin ran the 2019 race distance of 232km - around 140 miles - and fittingly made it a truly home event with the United Kingdom placed in lockdown.
"It would have been very easy for me to have gone out on the road and run a marathon in a day but that wouldn't have proved the point. About the solitude. About getting on when you're on your own. I wanted to prove to people in lockdown that even if you self-isolate you can do things," he added.
It meant an astonishing 2,700 laps round his house with each lap consisting of only 80 meters. It was not the easiest circuit either. Thirty metres through the garden. Ten metres down the side of the house - twice - together with another 20 meters at the front of the house round his two cars.(04/21/2020) ⚡AMP
The Marathon des Sables is ranked by the Discovery Channel as the toughest footrace on earth. Known simply as the MdS, the race is a gruelling multi-stage adventure through a formidable landscape in one of the world’s most inhospitable climates - the Sahara desert. The rules require you to be self-sufficient, to carry with you on your back everything except...more...
29-year-old Adam Cordell originally planned to participate in this year's Boston Marathon, but he was forced to change his plans when the marathon was postponed due to COVID-19.
Instead of giving up, he decided that if he couldn't go the marathon, he'd just make one, instead.
"I decided to run a marathon, then all of a sudden my mom came up to me, and she's like: 'While we're at it, why don't we start raising funds, why don't we do some good for this?'" he said. "So I partnered with her and for the past week or so, we've been getting donations for the Food Bank of the Rockies."
Cordell established a 26.2 mile course -- the same distance as the Boston Marathon -- that spanned all around Cheyenne.
He headed off from his home at approximately 8 A.M. and reached his destination, Lion's Park, shortly before 11 A.M., a large crowd having gathered to cheer him on.
This wasn't his first marathon, either; Cordell placed first out of 154 runners in the previous Cheyenne Marathon.
Cordell, who works as a physical education teacher at Baggs and Fairview Elementary Schools, said he trains everyday to keep himself in shape for runs like these.
"I run about a hundred miles a week, anywhere between seven and twenty-two miles a day. So, I mean, it's just a grind, but I love it."
Cordell received roughly $8,000 in donations for the run, which Blue Federal Credit Union and the Blue Foundation matched, leading to a total of $16,000 raised for the Wyoming Food Bank of the Rockies.
"The community of Cheyenne came out. They practiced social distancing. They stayed far enough away from each other, but 26.2 miles is a lot...It was awesome."
Cordell still plans to participate in the Boston Marathon, which is now scheduled for September.(04/21/2020) ⚡AMP
World 1,500m champion Timothy Cheruiyot is ruing the missed chance to cement his name in the sport's folklore by winning an Olympic medal in 2020.
Cheruiyot, 24, had high expectations this season, but all that has disappeared as he can't train or compete in any event at the moment.
The Diamond League has been postponed with the first race likely in August and the Olympic Games have been pushed back to 2021. Now, he is left with doing his part-time job, farming.
"Of course I had set my sights on winning my fourth Diamond League trophy and the Olympic Games," said Cheruiyot on Monday from his home in Bomet.
Cheruiyot had hoped to use the top form he has enjoyed recently to challenge some of the times set in the distance, defend the Diamond Trophy and win the Tokyo Olympics.
Now he will have to wait, hoping he will find similar form in 2021, to hunt for medals and records.
"Hopefully, I will be in the same form as last season. But we have to accept to live with things we can't change. We have to accept the postponement of the Games because nothing much could have been done," he said.
Cheruiyot says the world will emerge stronger after the coronavirus and it is important that athletes continue training no matter how hard it is to do alone.
"Of course, we are finding ourselves in a very difficult situation as athletes but we take heart because it is a global problem. We will overcome it and sports will be back on the big stage," Cheruiyot said.
Kenyan athletes will have a tough choice to make in 2021 when most sports events are expected to return. There will be the Commonwealth Games, the Olympic Games, the Diamond League, Africa Championships and Continental Tour.
Some of these events, running from May to August, are so close that it will be hard to see some athletes doubling up or competing in subsequent races.
"For me, being able to race again will be enough," said Helen Obiri, the world 5,000m champion. "I have no plans on doubling, because now what is important is being safe, healthy and focused. Coronavirus will end and we will return to action."(04/21/2020) ⚡AMP
The Boston Marathon in 2020 will take place in unusual circumstances.
Due to the COVID-19 outbreak, the prestigious long-distance athletics event - which was supposed to be run today on April 20 - has been postponed until 14 September.
This means that spring in the USA won't feature the road race for the first time in a century.
However, while many runners will be disappointed with the delay, the rescheduled event does present an opportunity for some. USA marathon Olympic qualifier Aliphine Tuliamuk falls under that category.
The Kenyan-born athlete wasn’t supposed to compete in the Boston Marathon in 2020, but given the delay, and also Tokyo 2020’s postponement until 2021, she is now considering competing.
“I think every athlete honestly feels like if they win Boston, then they will have done something incredible. And I definitely want to do that." Tuliamuk told Olympic Channel, in an interview for a forthcoming podcast episode.
Tuliamuk told us that the change to the schedule would leave an emotional mark.
“The Boston Marathon is one of those traditions, right in the middle of spring," the American runner added.
“In 2018 after New York (Marathon), I was like ‘let's run Boston.’ Of course, it was too late to ask to run Boston and I didn't get in." She told us.
"I hope that someday the opportunity will present itself for me to run in Boston.”
Tuliamuk also revealed in her Olympic Channel interview, that she has a rather unique reason to be excited if she takes part in the Boston race.
"I think that the two marathons that I've run this last year, has put me as put me in a place where I really think that I could run with those ladies that ran Boston Marathon and actually, I have a fun fact. Mary Kay, who recruits the John Hancock elite athletes for Boston and I have something in common. We love crocheting. We talked about that last year after the New York City Marathon.
“After the trials I gave her one of my crocheted hats. I'm like, ‘In the future, maybe I'll run the Boston Marathon. And then after the race, you know, do the celebration, Mary and I will be crocheting together.”
The Boston Marathon postponement has presented the United States with a potentially massive change to win the race in the form of Tuliamuk this September, should she compete. If you told her that at the start of 2020, she'd probably have eaten her hat.
Emmanuel Korir observed that he is unable to train at all, unlike his Kenyan counterparts who can do individual training following the closure of camps. He said this will give the Kenyan-based runners an edge once the crisis ends.
While imposing a lockdown, the USA government said: “All parks and recreational areas are now closed to the public and all limits. Public and private gatherings of any number of people are prohibited. Anyone returning from travel at 100+ miles outside the city must self-quarantine for 14 days.”
The kinesiology (the scientific study of human or non-human body movement) student at the University of Texas at El Paso (UTEP) said he wishes he was in Kenya.
“We are not allowed to do any kind of training. Luckily, back home in Kenya, I could run in the forest alone or conduct some training on my own unlike here. Life is at its worst but I have to try my best to survive,” said Korir.
The man, who anchored Team Kenya to the 4x400m relays title at the Africa Athletics Championships in Asaba, Nigeria two years ago, hopes that he will manage to return stronger once the pandemic is over.
“I had good plans this year and I was ready to compete at the Doha Diamond League opener (in May) but all that is water under the bridge. I have nothing to look forward to. No one had expected this pandemic,” added Korir.
As a student, he conducts his classes online with two to three lessons per day.
“I do my studies by attending online classes that keep me busy, killing off the boredom,” he said. He said he is facing the most difficult time of his life with the only move allowed being a trip to the grocery store.
“We are allowed to have enough stock for about two weeks but one can still replenish whenever provisions run out,” he added.(04/20/2020) ⚡AMP
It’s a macabre coincidence that the lead-up to the Olympic Games of 100 years ago was fraught with a universal calamity all too similar to that which we are now facing in 2020.
Already by January of 1919 there had been 400,000 deaths reported in the USA alone from the “Spanish Influenza” epidemic which was ravaging the world, but there was no question of that country – the most successful at the Games since their revival in 1896 – withdrawing from the next celebration planned for 1920. Far from it.
In March 1919 the Central News Agency in New York reported the definitive decision of the US sports administrators: “In reply to a query from the Swedish Athletic Association, prominent officials here at the Amateur Athletic Union declared ‘America stands ready to send a representative athletic team to the next Olympic Games, regardless of the time or place which may be designated’”.
The members of the French Olympic Committee – whose opinion counted for much as founders of the modern Olympic movement – were more circumspect, but their hesitation had nothing to do with health matters. They declared, “The Olympic Games should not be held before 1921 as there would not be sufficient time for the Allied countries which have supported, and are still supporting, the burdens of the war to prepare adequately for a meeting in 1920”.
Those burdens of war had, of course, been horrendous. There had been an estimated 8.6 million military fatalities – 1.3 million of them in France and over 900,000 throughout the British Empire – and yet the toll from influenza between 1918 and 1920 would be far greater. Though there was not even public radio in those days there was still widespread newspaper reporting of the epidemic but no screaming headlines of doom-laden predictions. The Minister of Health in Great Britain, for instance, announced in July 1919 that in the six months to 31 March there had been 136,000 deaths from influenza in England and Wales, but this caused no barrage of demands from Members of Parliament for immediate Government action. To provide some sort of perspective, in his same address to the House of Commons the Minister reported that there had been 488,000 visits to venereal disease treatment centres the previous year. The MPs moved on, undisturbed, to other business.
No thought was apparently given to the idea of suspending major international sporting events attracting thousands of spectators. Already in 1919, in the euphoria of peace at last, there had been an Inter-Allied Games held from 22 June to 6 July at the Stade Pershing, in Paris, specially built for the occasion by the US Army, in which 1500 athletes from 18 nations took part. Then, when the protracted Olympic Games of 1920 opened in Antwerp as per schedule on 20 April, lasting until 12 September; there were actually more competitors than there had been in the Stockholm Olympics of 1912 (2607 as against 2547) and one more country (29).
Why was there such indifference at these mass gatherings to the health implications? Well, that’s a question which needs more expertise to answer fully than that of a mere athletics writer with an interest in history, but perhaps a salient factor is that the populace of a century ago lived with the impact of infectious diseases every day of their lives to a far greater extent than we do today, and though there were strong views expressed on the wisdom of taking part in an Olympic Games these were for other reasons entirely.
In Britain a campaign to boycott the Games on the grounds that they were getting too seriously competitive was led by no less a person than Sir Theodore Cook, who had helped organise the 1908 London Games and had written the Official Report and become an International Olympic Committee member! For those reasons, his views were naturally given due attention but were out-weighed most notably by the counter-arguments of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, the creator of Sherlock Holmes and an avid athletics enthusiast. Then Sir Theodore rather undermined his stance by entering the literature section of the Olympic Arts competitions in Antwerp and taking second place!(04/20/2020) ⚡AMP
Before starting the 2014 Boston Marathon, Meb Keflezighi had four names scribbled in marker on his race bib corners: Martin, Krystle, Lingzi and Sean.
Martin Richard, Krystle Campbell and Lingzi Lu died as a result of the twin bombings near the Boylston Street finish line during the 2013 Boston Marathon. Three days later, Sean Collier, a policeman, was shot and killed in a confrontation with the attackers.
Keflezighi ran in 2014 in their memory and with his own remembrance. All the way to one of the defining victories in the race’s 123-year history, becoming the first U.S. male runner to win in 31 years.
A year earlier, Keflezighi left an observer grandstand near the finish line of the Boston Marathon about five minutes before the bombs went off.
“The four victims that died in the explosion were spectators just like me,” he said.
It marked a career turnaround at age 38 for Keflezighi, who had been dropped by Nike three years earlier. He considered retirement. The 2004 Olympic silver medalist and 2009 New York City Marathon champion had placed 23rd at his previous marathon and withdrew before the 2013 Boston race with a calf injury.
Keflezighi went out hard from the start, keen on meeting his minimum pre-race goal: to set a personal best. At the halfway point, he and little-known American Josphat Boit led the field by 30 seconds.
In the chase pack, other Americans conversed and strategized not to push the pace in pursuit.
“We needed to give Meb as much space as possible,” Ryan Hall, the fastest American marathoner in history, texted Tim Layden, then of Sports Illustrated and now of NBC Sports. “If the African guys were going to try to catch him, we weren’t going to do the work to help them. It wasn’t my day to win, as much as I wanted to. Meb winning was the next best thing and what the US needed.”
Keflezighi pulled away from Boit between the 15th and 19th miles, opening a one-minute lead. The margin dropped to about eight seconds at the 25-mile mark, but Keflezighi held off Kenyan Wilson Chebet by 11 seconds on Boylston.
“This is beyond running,” Keflezighi, whose full first name, Mebrahtom, means “let there be light” in the Eritrean language, said in a finish-area TV interview. “This is for the people, for the Boston Strong. We’re resilient as runners.”
Keflezighi, born in Eritrea, moved to the U.S. at age 12. His first time running seriously was in San Diego in junior high school, when PE students were given a grade for how much effort they put into a mile. He eventually earned a scholarship to UCLA and made his first Olympic team at age 25 in 2000.
Keflezighi retired from elite running in 2017 after 26 marathons, but he felt complete after Boston in 2014.
“99.9 of my career was fulfilled,” Keflezighi said after winning Boston. “Today, 110 percent.”(04/20/2020) ⚡AMP
Athletes Representative Barnaba Korir said sportsmen need government bailout just like other sectors of the economy to be able to stay afloat.
"Kenyan athletes will lose more than 5 billion shillings. This is from appearance fees, prize money and other endorsements outside their annual contracts. It is a big loss to the Kenyan economy," Korir said on Monday.
Kenya has more than 1,000 elite runners from 400 meters to the marathon, who solely depend on running for their livelihood.
New York marathon champion Geoffrey Kamworor said that since he canceled his race at the World Half marathon in Poland in March, he does not anticipate running until late in the year.
"It was my dream and plan to compete at my fourth World Half Marathon in Poland. I wanted so much to gauge myself in one last race before turning my focus to the track competition ahead of the Olympic Games. Both have now been postponed," Kamworor said.
Kamworor said athletes are suffering because there are no more competitions, and welcome the decision by the Kenyan government to provide cash bailouts to the most vulnerable.
"Now I live in Eldoret with my family. However, it has been tough because when you are used to training together then suddenly you are not allowed to, it's a bit hard. But it's the situation we all find ourselves in and we must adjust accordingly. That's the nature of life and sports," he added.
Typically athletes get paid quarterly for their endorsement contracts, which provide the base level of income, essentially their salary. Those payments are still flowing according to Korir and for the top runners, this might continue for some time.
But there are fears athletes whose contracts have lapsed and were due to end in September after the track season closes may find it hard to renew their contracts.
"Athletes need races to prove their fitness. That is now there and top shoe companies may be reluctant to open new contracts," Korir added.
Athletes will also lose out on the time bonuses. Events like the Diamond League and the Continental Tour and Indoor Tour have all been postponed claiming a sizeable amount of the athletes' income.
"They could even get paid more if they broke certain performance benchmarks stated in their contracts. None of those will have to be paid now," he added.
Generally, the loss of appearance fees, prize money and performance bonuses mean certain athletes would see significant income dips. That would be especially true for marathon runners who can make hundreds of thousands of dollars from just one race.(04/20/2020) ⚡AMP
Retired track star Usain Bolt showed he's still a few steps ahead when he posted a picture of him outstripping his rivals at the Beijing Olympics with the cheeky caption: "social distancing".
Bolt's post, featuring a picture of the 2008 Olympics 100m final, blew up on social media, drawing more than half a million likes and 90 000 retweets.
It showed the Jamaican crossing the finish line at the Bird's Nest stadium in a then-world record time of 9.69, glancing round from Lane 4 as his despairing competitors trail two paces behind.
"Savage", commented one Twitter user, while New York Times journalist Christopher Clarey posted another picture of Bolt out in front on his own, captioned "self isolation".
Bolt's chest-thumping celebration in Beijing added to a legend that grew further when he won the 200m in another world-record time. He retired in 2017 with eight Olympic gold medals and the current 100m mark of 9.58, set in 2009.
Bolt, 33, has been encouraging Jamaicans to self-isolate during the coronavirus pandemic, posting videos of himself exercising at home and juggling footballs with a friend. He also helped promote a major fundraiser, Telethon Jamaica.
After retiring from athletics, Bolt, a Manchester United fan, attempted to launch a career in football, and had a trial with Australia's Central Coast Mariners before contract talks failed.(04/19/2020) ⚡AMP
A group representing the homeless is asking to use the athletes village for next year's Tokyo Olympics as a shelter during the coronavirus pandemic.
An online petition addressed to Tokyo Olympics organizers and the city government has drawn tens of thousands of signatures for permission to occupy the massive housing complex going up alongside Tokyo Bay.
The village was to be home to 11,000 Olympic athletes and 4,400 Paralympic athletes. It is largely complete and empty with the Olympic opening postponed by the virus outbreak until July 23, 2021.
"We don't know how long this downturn will last, and so we have to change how we think," Ren Ohnishi, chairperson of the Moyai Support Center for Independent Living, told The Associated Press. "That includes how we work, how we deal with housing, how we give aid to those who need it."
Tokyo Olympics organizers declined comment, and the Tokyo metropolitan government also had no immediate comment on the petition. It's unclear when the petition will be submitted.
The petition reads in part: "If the outbreak continues for some time, many people may fall into poverty or lose their homes."
The homeless in Tokyo living on the streets total about 1,000 people. Another 4,000 are estimated to be staying at so-called "net cafes" -- numbering about 500 -- that offer internet access and cubicles to spend the night, according to a Tokyo city government study.
Many net cafes were shut down after the government asked businesses where the coronavirus might spread to voluntarily close.
The city government has prepared about 500 rooms at hotels for those who are no longer able to stay at the net cafes, and more are being readied if needs grow, city official Kazuo Hatananaka said.
Experts say homeless communities might worsen the pandemic's spread because of the inability to practice social distancing.
Society needs to grow more inclusive or else the outbreak will spread," Ohnishi said. "Our society is being tested. In Japan, many people still blame the poor as causing their own plight."
Although Tokyo appears orderly and prosperous, the city has a class of homeless people. They can be seen alongside rivers, under railway tracks and tucked into parks. Communities of the homeless have sprung up, many living out of cardboard boxes.
Nearly 16% of Japanese people fall below the poverty rate with annual income below the cutoff of 1.2 million yen ($11,000), according to 2017 Japanese government data. The poverty rate for single-adult households with children is higher, at 51%.
The unraveling of extended family support networks and job insecurity have left many in Japan vulnerable to setbacks that can lead to homelessness. Japan's culture of conformity also leaves many ashamed to seek help.
The athletes village complex is a joint real-estate venture involving major developers and the city of Tokyo. It will eventually have 24 buildings, including upscale condominiums that are priced at more than $1 million. Some units have been on sale, with occupancy planned after the Olympics close.
Japan has more than 10,000 reported cases of the coronavirus with about 200 deaths, according to Johns Hopkins University. Tokyo's daily reports of cases have climbed to more than 100 in recent weeks, and worries are growing that hospitals will run out of beds.
The coronavirus causes mild or moderate symptoms for most people and can include a fever, coughing and mild pneumonia. But those who don't have severe symptoms have added to the problem by unintentionally spreading the sickness. Worldwide cases have surged to more than 2 million people.
Japan declared a "state of emergency," initially centered around Tokyo and six other urban regions. This week it was expanded nationwide.
Tokyo Governor Yuriko Koike has mentioned using the village complex to house those under quarantine or patients who don't require intensive care in hospitals. But the city has bought hotel space and secured other housing, such as prefabricated homes built for security during the Olympics, for such use.(04/19/2020) ⚡AMP
USA Track and Field has laid off seven people from its 65-person staff and CEO Max Siegel is taking a 20% pay cut to offset lost revenue due to the coronavirus pandemic.
The organization that runs the country’s largest summer sport has been forced to cancel dozens of events, including the Olympic trials, which were scheduled for June. In 2016, trials produced around $5 million in revenue. They will be rescheduled to mesh with the Olympics, which have been pushed into 2021.
Sports Business Daily reported that all the cuts came in divisions that support the 8,000 live events the USATF sanctions.(04/19/2020) ⚡AMP