US Or Jamaican Sprinters?

"Hmmm, I don't see that there is one better than the other ... But at the end of the day this is one world, one planet, one people. We should walk off the track and it should not be US versus Jamaica."

- US sprinter Lauryn Williams talking to the media about the US vs. Jamaica sprint rivalry. It's true - to the athletes, the rivalry thing doesn't really matter. To the press, it's something to write a story about. 

Flotrack Kwik-E Interview With Jordan Hasay
A good read for girl athletes looking for a role model. Hasay talks about the transition to college, her cross-training swimming routine, and the nutjobs on the internet message boards.

Charles Van Commenee Talks After 1 Year On The Job As Head Of UK Athletics
Van Commenee seems content after a turbulent year in which a good amount of people lost their jobs and many athletes lost their funding or were forced to move places or coaches. Going into 2010, most everyone knows what to expect.

2 Top Jan 1st Reads

Recommended Read: Times London Writes About Female Athletes From Kenya
The piece follows Lornah Kiplagat, one of the first few Kenyan female distance stars from the male dominated Kenyan society. Kiplagat now is Dutch but has a training center in Kenya and has found ways to use her success for positive improvements despite males expecting her to cook their meals and wash their clothes early in her career.

IAAF Says Statute Of Limitations Is Up On Ben Johnson Case, Will Not Act Or Comment  Can't Blame 'Em ...
Daily Telegraph journalist Mike Hurst broke the story of revelations from Ben Johnson's book that will be released in February of 2010. His latest article points out some of the difficult questions Johnson's revelations raise and hints that the IAAF will refuse to act or comment. Johnson apparently writes in Seoul to Soul that he tested positive before the 1988 Olympics (he still was allowed to compete).

LRC What Was The LRC Quote Of The Year In 2009? It's the most effective and interesting way to review the year in running. We're letting our loyal site visitors determine the quote of the year for 2009. No need to log in. All you have to do is pick your favorite quote of the day from the ones we give you for each month.

Final Day!
LRC US Distance Rankings

2009 US Men's Marathon Rankings
Meb, Hall And Ritz Continue As America's Big 3

2009 USA Women's Marathon Rankings
Kara Goucher And Desiree Davila Are 1-2 For USA
113th Boston Marathon Desiree Davila became the first Hansons-Brooks female star when she finished 1 spot behind Kara Goucher at Berlin's World Championships Marathon. Goucher, a Worlds medalist at 10,000m, took center stage in Boston, but ultimately could not match the finishing speed of Salina Kosgei and Dire Tune. Behind the top 2 are a mix of elder greats (Deena Kastor and Colleen De Reuck) and the young American champion Ilsa Paulson.

Men's 10,000m
4 Americans Break 27:40 But It's A 2-Horse Race For The #1 Ranking
11th IAAF World Athletics Championships: Day Three Whose year was tops, Dathan Ritzenhein or Galen Rupp? Rupp won the NCAA and USATF 10,000m before running a gutsy race in Berlin. Ritzenhein peaked later and finished his last 5,000m of the Berlin 10,000 in 13:37 to place 6th. Also, who would have expected Tim Nelson (27:36) and Patrick Smyth to have such big improvements in '09?
LRC Boards: Tim Nelson Congrats Thread

Women's 10,000m
"Reign Of Shalane" Ends As Begley Bags #1 Ranking
U.S. Track and Field Olympic Trials - Day One American record holder Shalane Flanagan switched coaches and ultimately decided to switch gears in 2009. From here forward, America's greatest track distance runner of all time may be focused on marathon training. Thanks to Nike's Oregon Project, the 10,000 wasn't bare for America in '09. Amy Begley upset the Olympic medalist at USAs and finished 6th at Worlds in a career-best year.

LRC US Rankings 2009 was a banner year for US distance runners and for and we thought of no better way to celebrate the end of the year than with the first-ever US year-end distance rankings. Instead of the 12 days of Xmas, it's the 12 days of during the final 12 days of 2009. We give you the top 10 in each distance event.

Men's 5,000m: Lagat Leads Stellar American Year One American got a silver medal at Worlds and two more Americans went sub-13 minutes. Dathan Ritzenhein's electrifying run left him with the American record. Was it good enough to rank him #2 ahead of WC finalist Matt Tegenkamp? Yes.

Women's 5,000m: Shalane Flanagan Leads The Way Jen Rhines
may have been 9th at the Worlds this year, but she is only #3 in the US rankings, as Flanagan and Jenny Barringer get the top 2 spots.

Women's Steeple: Jenny B Reigns Supreme Barringer was sensational in 2009 at many distances and smashed her American steeplechase record. A measured race at Worlds, however, left her just short of the medals.

Men's Steeple: Huling's 8:14 Earns Him #1 Ranking In Down Year For US

Women's 1,500: Rowbury Is The Class Of Most Amazing 1,500 Quartet In American History Coming into the year, only two Americans had ever broke 4:00 outdoors. Well, this year, three Americans broke four and none of them were our #1-ranked metric miler for the year.

Men's 1,500: Lagat Leads Strong American Contingent The USA put 3 guys into the 1,500m final at the World Champs and Bernard Lagat came home with a bronze in a very strong year for US 1,500m runners. Outside of the World Champs, frosh sensation German Fernandez went undefeated in the NCAA ranks and took down Tony Waldrop's 35-year-old NCAA indoor record.

Women's 800m: Maggie Vessey And Anna Willard Turn Heads These two women who started 2009 as no-names in the world 800m ranks turned quite a few heads with their Golden League and IAAF Grand Prix wins. However, only one of them could be ranked #1 and that is ... You'll have to click through to find out.

USA Track and Field National Championships Day 4 Men's 800m: The Nick Symmonds Show Symmonds was clearly the top dog in the US in 2009 as he was the first US Worlds finalist in over a decade. We break down the top 10 and recap the year for the men's half milers.

Recommended Reads:
Profile On Pole Vault Great Yelena Isinbayeva
UK's Daily Mail writes a lengthy profile of Russian pole vault diva Yelena Isinbayeva. She talks about growing up poor and wanting to be rich and glamorous. A former star gymnast who grew too tall, by 1998 she was a world youth champion in the pole vault and now she has re-set the world record 27 times. Isinbayeva, like a Michael Jordan or Tiger Woods, seems to have that same insane drive to win that's 5 steps above even the average pro.

LRC Training Talk Thursday Episode II
Access to the best minds in the sport. Free and easy. You won't find more useful training talk anywhere. Only from

Click Play Below To Hear Our Conversation With Author Matt Fitzgerald.

Matt talked for more than an hour about his new book: "Racing Weight - How To Get Lean For Peak Performance." At last, someone has the guts to write what everyone knows - runners want to lose weight so they can run faster. We think the book is very practical for the beginner to the pro. Also we wanted to promote Matt's revolutionary book with a foreword by legend Dr. Tim Noakes, called "Brain Training For Runners." LRC Coaching Guru John Kellogg is a fan of Brain Training and says his training is based significantly on principles that also appear in Noakes' and Fitzgeralds' work.

Lots Of New Year's Results

Distance News

LRC Greater Philadelphia TC Masters 4 x 800 Breaks World Record With 8:07
3 former high school standouts (including one from a HS 4x 800 that ran 7:36) and another Greater Philadelphia TC 40+ teammate combined to break the masters world record in the 4x 800 at the Armory this past Sunday. Fastest split was a 1:57.

Mark Conover Named Head Track And Field Coach At Cal Poly San Luis Obispo
A 2:12 marathoner and 1988 Olympic Trials champion, Conover has been the cross-country coach at Cal Poly SLO for several years and replaces Terry Crawford.

IAAF: Preview Of San Silvestre Vallecana - Most Elite New Year's Race On The Globe

Man Set To Run 250 Marathons In 2010 To Raise Money For "Right to Play"
54-year-old Canadian hopes to raise $250,000 in running almost 7,000 miles in 2010.

Interesting First-Hand Quotes From Bolt's 100m WR And Jessica Ennis' Breakthrough Heptathlon In Berlin

Today's Headline

England Ready To Pull Out Of India's Commonwealth Games
Western countries are citing terrorist concerns from neighboring Pakistan.

*Other High-Up Sources On Reported England Pull-Out - "No Truth To It"

Domestic News

Erkesso Back To Defend Houston Marathon - Kenyans Head Men's Field
 Ethiopian Teyba Erkesso debuted last year to the tune of a course record 2:24:18. Deriba Merga also won last year in a course record but will not be back. Filling his winner's shoes will likely be Kenyan Jason Mbote, Charles Kibiwott and Benson and David Cheruiyot.

Interesting Article On Chris Clark - DII Runner Who Ran Sub-14 And 29:03
According to the article, Clark sometimes runs 120 miles a week in singles and no slower than 6:30 pace. He has hopes at the marathon.

"Maybe the longest standing ovation in sports history," Cathy Freeman In Front Of 112,000 At Sydney 2000 One Of Decade's Top Sporting Days

Around The Globe

Panamanian Alonso Edward Ran 19.81 - Faster Than Bolt At Age 19

San Silvestre Vallecana Will Be World's Fastest New Year's Eve Race
Moses Masai and '09 5,000m world champ Vivian Cheruiyot will headline the Spanish road 10k.

Swedish Star Christian Olsson To Return To Triple Jumping In Birmingham Vs. World Champ Idowu
Swedish track and field has been hit hard with injuries in the past couple years with Olsson, Carolina Kluft, Susanna Kallur and others no-showing or disappointing at the major meets. Olsson hasn't jumped in a big meet since 2006.

Australian Sprinter Finegan Rousing Trouble By Entering Races Under Fake Names
He's also been involved in a minor betting scandal.

Semenya Counsel Set To Sue IAAF For Mega-Fortune $120,000,000
Caster Semenya and her high-powered legal counsel have announced their intentions to sue track's global governing body IAAF for an absurd sum of money. They also plan to sue Athletics South Africa, but apparently since they don't have money, they're only going to sue Chuene and company for $20 million.
*NY Times Article On Semenya Calls Hers One Of The Stories Of 2009

Semenya Lawyer Denies Announcing $120,000,000 Lawsuit
Lawyer calls reports "nonsense". Either journalists made up quotes from his law firm or this guy is full of it.

Seoul 1988 Revelation

Friend Of Carl Lewis' Admits To Spiking Ben Johnson's Drink With 'Roids
This revelation from Johnson's soon-to-be-released autobiography Seoul to Soul is certainly not proof that the disgraced sprinter was clean (he admits to using a designer steroid at the time). But it does explain why stanozolol was in his system at the time of the test, an occurrence Johnson has claimed must have been the result of tampering.

Kenenisa Bekele And Linet Masai Win Deserved 2009 Best Awards From Race Results Weekly

Percy Sutton Dies - Helped Move NYC Marathon From Central Park To 5 Boroughs
Fascinating life: *NY Times Obituary For New York Politician Percy Sutton

Lots Of Other News For Monday Morning Readers ...
Women Track Stars In The Papers

Jumps Star Jeomi Maduka Named Ithaca Female Athlete Of The Year
Maduka became a multi-time All-American at Cornell and was an NCAA Honorable Mention All-American basketball player as an Ivy Leaguer (this never happens).

Good Read - 800m Extraordinaire Chanelle Price Is Lehigh Valley Athlete Of The Decade
Price led the US Olympic Trials as a 17-year-old but has found stardom at the college and pro levels to be a bit of a challenge.

Good Read: Science Of Sports Guys Record Their Top 10 Stories Of 2009
Theirs is one of the best sites on the web for running fans.

Getting Rave Reviews: LRC Training Talk - Listen To Our First 2 Episodes

Ron Warhurst On Mechanics And What The Great Athletes Have

LRC The Week That Was Let's be honest; last week, not a whole lot actually happened in the running world. The majority of the running news was about what is likely to happen in 2010. We were busy finalizing our top 10 rankings for the year and thought about bagging The Week That Was, but then remembered that our New Year's resolution for 2009 was to do it every week for 2009, so here it is - in somewhat abbreviated form.

New Feature: Products We Use And Recommend: ING Bank (Checking And Savings)

ING Orange Checking And Savings Bank Review A message board thread on outrageous overdraft fees got us to write a review of ING's banking products. ING has no fees including no fees for overdrafts. We have used them at least since 2004, and have never been disappointed. Read our review and seriously consider switching banks. Not only is their product great but they support world class marathoning throughout the world.