No Boston Hat Unless It Has A Swoosh, The 2013 London Marathon, 1,500 Struggles, & How Do You Pronounce Tsegaye Kebede?

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The Week That Was In Running: April 15 – April 21, 2013

by LetsRun.com
April 25, 2013

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This Week’s Sign Of The Apocalypse

“I would have gladly raced in the (Boston Red Sox) hat but there is no swoosh on it.”

– The Nike-sponsored Andrew Wheating talking about a Boston Red Sox cap he had with him to support the victims of the terrorist attacks, after running the 800 at the 2013 Oregon Relays.

More: Distance runners, hammer throwers give the Ducks a big boost in their dual with Arkansas

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US 1,500 Stars Struggle

Not a good week for the many of the big names in the US in terms of the 1,500.

Olympic silver medallist Leo Manzano was beaten by nearly two full seconds by former Ohio State runner and now Furman assistant coach, Cory Leslie, in the mile at the Kansas Relays as Leslie ran 3:58.18 to Manzano’s 4:00.13. (We didn’t see this one, but Leslie apparently ran away from the field early)

Leslie, who was third in the NCAA steeplechase last spring, does have a 3:56.90 mile PR from 2012 and was third indoors at USAs this year but is a guy who also failed to make the final of NCAAs in the mile last year indoors. Manzano followed that up with a third place showing at the US 1 Mile Road champs on Tuesday, which was won by Garrett Heath.

Morgan Uceny is trying to get back up after London 2012

In the same US road champs, 2009 World Championships bronze medallist Shannon Rowbury was only 6th in the women’s competition. Rowbury was awful at Carlsbad in the 5k a few weeks ago (16:08 for 5k) but that was supposedly the result of food poisoning.  At the US road mile champs, Rowbury (4:45.39) was more than two seconds back from race winner in former Yale runner Kate Grace (4:43.02).

And then there was an even more troubling race. 2012 world #1 Morgan Uceny, who suffered heart-breaking falls at the 2011 Worlds and 2012 Olympics, raced for first time since the London Olympics when she dropped down to her old event, the 800, and ran at Mt. SAC. The result? A last place 2:05.50 showing.

Uceny hasn’t run slower than 2:03.35 (and that was a victory indoors at Millrose in 2012) since 2009. In 2009, she opened her 800 year with a 2:06 in May. Her seasonal bests for the year that year? 2:00.06 and 4:09.95. Her PRs are 1:58.37 and 4:00.06.

More: *Full Kansas Relays Results *Corey Leslie Runs Away Early From Leo Manzano, Nick Symmonds, Lee Emanuel In Mile *Garrett Heath And Kate Grace Win US Road Mile Championships As 1,500 Medallists Manzano And Rowbury Struggle *Full Kansas Relays Results *Corey Leslie Runs Away Early From Leo Manzano, Nick Symmonds, Lee Emanuel In Mile *Mt. SAC Results

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Some Good News From Mt. SAC – Duane Solomon & Brenda Martinez And Will Leer Impress

Not all of the news out in terms of 2013 season openers was depressing.

There was some good news coming out of a Mt. SAC.  2012 Olympic finallist Duane Solomon, who ran 1:42.83 in London last year, opened his outdoor campaign with a win in 1:46.03. Last year, he also ran and won in Mt. SAC. His time last year? Yes, you guessed it – 1:46.03.

*Mt. SAC Results

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However, the really big performance coming out of Mt. SAC and our PERFORMANCE OF THE WEEK belonged to Brenda Martinez.

The 25-year-old ran a massive 2.10-second PR and smashed the field by winning in 4:04.86, a new Mt. SAC record as she smashed former 800 Olympic champ Maria Mutola‘s 20-year-old mark of 4:08.92. She smashed the field by even more, as second place was 4:10.03. The mark also is a 2012 outdoors world-leading time.

How is Martinez doing so well early in 2013? She’s following the #1 LetsRun.com training mantra of Strength = Speed.

Martinez, who lowered her 5,000 PR from 16:23 to 15:35 earlier this year, told the San Gabriel Valley Tribune after her big PR, “This year my training’s been a lot different. I actually believe in the strength I have under me. I never put this kind of work in, so I knew I wasn’t going to die off.”

*Brenda Martinez Set The 1,500 World Lead And Crushed A 20-Year-Old Meet Record At Mt. SAC *Mt. SAC Results

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There also was another world leader set in Mt. SAC by a 1,500-meter runner. 28-year-old American Will Leer‘s world lead came in the 5,000, however, as he ran 13:21.55, a huge improvement over his 13:36.15 PR from last year.

With Rowbury and Uceny and Manzano struggling, could this be the year that the often overlooked Leer and Martinez break through and make their first Worlds team?

We’ll find out in a few months.

*Mt. SAC Results

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Is A Sub-15 On The Horizon For D’Agostino?

2012 NCAA indor 3000 and 5,000 champ Abbey D’Agostino had a big PR in the women’s 5000 at Mt. SAC as she lowered her PR from 15:19.98 to 15:11.35 and got the World Championship ‘A’ standard in the process of 15:18.00.

Considering second place was just 15:21.08 (former Stony Brook runner Lucy Van Dalen) and how easily D’Agostino destroyed everyone in the 3,000 and 5,000 at NCAAs, we are now even more firm on what we thought after watching NCAA indoors – D’Agostino is a near lock for the 2013 Worlds team.

Bigger than that, we think she’s got a real shot at becoming the first collegian under 15:00. Jenny Barringer (Simpson) ran the fastest time ever in college at 15:01.90 indoors in 2009. That same year, she also set the collegiate record outdoors of 15:07.64.

More: Brenda Martinez 4:04, Ben True / Patrick Casey 3:40, Will Leer 13:21, Abbey D’Agostino 15:11, Shalaya Kipp 9:52 Steeple

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Under-Appreciated Performance Of The Week – Sean McGorty Runs 8:46

We don’t spend a lot of time at LetsRun on high school performances as few of them are truly elite. But we were incredibly impressed by Sean McGorty‘s outdoor season opener last week in Virginia.

Totally alone, in a race where second place was 9:45.06, McGorty ran 8:46.07 for 3,200 meters. And it was windy. You can watch the race for yourself and if you do, you’ll hear the wind blowing into the microphone. The race was held at Lake Braddock HS in  Burke, VA which is a little less than 15 miles from the DCA airport. The race started around 9:32 am according to the guys at Milesplit who filmed it, and weather underground reported between 9:30 and 10:00 am that at DCA the winds were more than 13 but less than 18 mph, with gusts over 20 mph.

We know he was running in a circle but running in the wind still hurts you. In still, “Stanford-like” conditions, he might have run around 8:40.

Want to learn more about McGorty, who is headed to Stanford next year? Well, you’re in luck. The Washington Post wrote a nice feature on him on April 14th. He’s got great track and field genes. His mother was a state cross-country champion in Virginia and his father competed at the 1984 and 1988 Olympic Trials in the decathlon.

McGorty seems like a supreme talent. The only negative? As of now, he’s the Sileshi Sihine of the high school ranks – Mr. Silver – second at Foot Locker Cross-Country, second at New Balance Indoors this winter and even second in his own state meet 3,200 this winter as well.

More: Sean McGorty finds a home on the track at Chantilly
MB: Sean McGorty Sends Arroyo a Message – 8:46 3200 to win by 68 Seconds @ Lake Braddock
*Sean McGorty 8:46.07 3200 at Lake Braddock! (Watch Race Video)
*Lake Braddock Results

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How About Bringing Yuki Kawauchi To The Boston Marathon?

Japan’s Yuki Kawauchi continued to amaze last week. If running 2:08 twice in the first three months of the year wasn’t impressive enough, Kawauchi decided to race his fourth marathon of 2013 last week in Nagano, where he picked up his third victory in freezing wet conditions. The guy is unreal.

Considering how consistent and durable the guy is, does anyone besides us want to see him run in Boston? If there is anyone whom the downhills seemingly wouldn’t bother, you’d think it would be Kawauchi – a guy who apparently needs no time to recover from a marathon. And a 2:08 in Boston is almost always competitive.

More: Yuki Kawauchi Wins Freezing Wet Nagano Marathon In 2:14:27 He became the first Japanese man to win in the 15-year history of the race. Russia’s Natalia Puchkova won the women’s race in 2:30:40.

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How Do You Pronounce Tsegaye Kebede?

Perhaps the person having the most inauspicious week last week was A.J. Clemente. The recent West Viriginia grad was making his debut as weekend anchor for KFYR in Bismarck, N.D.

The first words out of his mouth on-air? A string of curse words.

The result? He was fired.

The clip is almost painful to watch – see for yourself if you haven’t already watched it.

Why are we talking about this on a running website?

Well, one thing we didn’t realize when we watched the video ourselves is that according to NPR, Clemente was cursing because he couldn’t pronounce the name of 2013 Virgin London Marathon Winner Tsegaye Kebede.

More: Worst First Day Ever? TV Anchor Fired After Profane Debut

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Speaking Of Names, What Will The Name Of The 2013 New York City Marathon Be?

While we’re talking about names, we thought we’d point out that Virgin re-upped it’s sponsorship of the London Marathon but from here on out, it will be the Virgin Money London Marathon.

ING – the title sponsor of the ING New York City Marathon since 2003 – has been split up and will not be the title sponsor of New York for 2013. Much of what used to be ING in the US is now CapitalOne360.com, as ING Group – the Dutch multinational banking and financial services corporation – sold off its main US business, ING Direct, to Capital One.

So that leaves the question, what will the name of the 2013 New York City Marathon be?

How about the LetsRun.com New York City Marathon? Unfortunately, we don’t have the $10 million per year that the New York Road Runners want for the rights. Capital One NYC Marathon? Voya New York City Marathon Marathon?

*ING Direct Becoming Capital One 360 *Virgin Money Signs On As London Marathon Sponsor Through 2017

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2013 London Marathon – The Men Simply Went Out Too Fast

Since we mentioned the London Marathon, we guess we should provide a little bit more analysis on last weekend’s marathon.

This year’s men’s field was particularly accomplished, arguably the greatest field ever assembled for a men’s race, and yet the result was the slowest winning time (2:06:04) since 2007 when Martin Lel won in 2:07:41.

What happened? It’s simple. The men went out too fast. End of story.

It’s almost as if there are conspiracy theorists out there who don’t want to admit the truth. Despite what people are saying (MB: Reminder that when Ryan Hall ran 2:06:17 in London they went out in 61:30 with a random 4:23 mile in there), the 2008 London race where Ryan Hall ran 2:06:17 didn’t go out in 61:30. Not even close.

Yes, they were on world record pace that year, but the world record was slower and the halfway split was 62:14.

And guess what? They slowed down that year too, as the winning time of Martin Lel (who beat Sammy Wanjiru) was 2:05:15. To be truthful, they didn’t really die, as the second half of London is more difficult than the downhill first (the London course drops almost 40 meters between miles 2 and 3), but they did run a positive split.

Even the great Haile Gebrselassie, when he was on top of his marathoning game, once tried to go out in the 61:30s for the half and even he couldn’t handle it. At the 2008 Dubai marathon, when there was a one million bonus for a new world record, Gebrselassie went out in 61:27 (after a crazy-fast reported first 10k of 28:39 (2:00:49 pace)) and the result was a 2:04:53. The world record at the time was 2:04:26. Later that year, he would be the first man under 2:04 when he ran a slight negative split in Berlin (62:04 first half).

How was the London course record set in 2011? With a huge negative split.

When Emmanuel Mutai ran 2:04:40 in 2011, his opening first half was just 62:44. He blitzed the second half in 61:56 thanks to one of the greatest 10ks in marathoning history. From 30k to 40k, he ran a ridiculous 28:44 – that’s 2:01:14 marathon pace – to grab the lead and go on to set the course record.

More: Emmanuel Mutai Arrives As One Of The World’s Best: Mutai Gets First Major Win & First 2:04 Of His Career, As Former World #1 Martin Lel Surprisingly Takes 2nd In 1st Marathon Since 2008 Olympics
*Coverage Of 2008 Dubai Marathon
*Coverage Of 2008 Berlin Marathon
*2008 London Marathon Recap: Martin Lel Wins Fastest Marathon Ever, Ryan Hall Impresses
*Coverage Of 2013 Virgin London Marathon

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One Reason The Pace May Have Been Off In London – The Main Rabbit Got Hurt

We received the following email from Kip Evans – the man behind the http://runafricadotcom.wordpress.com/ website.

Dennis Kimetto (WR Holder for 25K, Tokyo Winner …) who was supposed to be the pacemaker up to 20 Miles got injured at the beginning and did … 3 miles! Then at halfway there was only one pacemaker left and he stopped at 25K …

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Tsegaye Kebede May Have Won But It Sure Didn’t Feel Like It

As we said in our London recap, the real winner in the men’s race was the marathon as the 26.2 distance controlled the runners and not vice versa. Even race winner, Tsegaye Kebede, who has now won two straight majors (2012 Chicago, 2013 London) seemingly agrees with us.

Kip Evans also emailed us the following anecdote from London which summarized the day perfectly. Evans feels that Michel Boeting, the manager of Emmanuel Mutai, who appeared to be on his way to winning London winner before being caught late by Kebede, summed up the 2013 London race perfectly with the following quote:

“On the podium Mutai told to a tired Kebede: ‘Smile you’re the winner.’ His reply: ‘Mutai, you killed me!”

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Email Of The Week Puts London Men’s Race In Perfect Perspective

We received the email from LetsRun.com visitor John O’Donnell of Washington, DC. We thought it was spot on the money in terms of London:

Great London report…. Thanks for it. To a fan my age, nearly 60, it struck me as an old fashioned race. The modern marathon, if we can call it that, is three or four guys together at 23 miles and then someone lowering the pace and the hammer, winning by five or fewer seconds. The old marathon was survival. Think Rod Dixon running down a staggering Geoff Smith in Central Park in the early 80s.

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2013 London Women’s Race Makes Us Appreciate Paula Radcliffe All The More

As for the women’s race, Priscah Jeptoo impressively got the win in 2:20:15 as she split 16:09 from 30 km to 35km to get the lead from 2011 world champion Edna Kiplagat and then 16:23 from 35 km to 40km to put the race out of reach.

That decisive 32:32 10km split makes us appreciate Paula Radcliffe‘s incredible 2:15:25 world record, which celebrated it’s 10th year anniversary at London this year, all the more.

32:32 is damn fast for a 10km segment in a women’s marathon. It’s 2:17:16 pace and Radcliffe somehow ran 2:15:25 for the whole thing. Truly incredible.

We very much enjoyed a piece written last week in The Guardian by Anna Kessel, which included the following anecdote from Radcliffe about her 2:15:25 run:

“The only time I really knew exact times was somewhere along the Embankment, [former Olympic silver medallist] Peter Elliott came alongside me because he was on the BBC camera bike and Gary [Lough, Radcliffe’s husband and coach] had told him to shout to me. He said: ‘Gary says if you hurry up you can get under 2:16!’ In my head I answered: ‘Screw Gary, I’m going as fast as I can.'”

We also loved Kessel’s piece, as for us it explained how Radcliffe’s almost unfathomable time could have been achieved cleanly. We know there are many people who think, “The time is so far out there – it must have been dirty.” And to be truthful, had we not once spent a week with Radcliffe ourselves at physical therapist Gerard Hartmann’s treatment facility in 2002, we probably would be skeptical ourselves.

Check out what Hartmann said about Radcliffe in Kessell’s piece:

“I’ve worked with 63 Olympic medallists and there was nobody, from Haile Gebrselassie to Kelly Holmes, who on the treatment table could ever take that level of pain. She would hurt me rather than me hurt her. She would actually break me down because I’d have to go so deep into the sinews, I would have to ice my thumbs afterwards I was in such pain.”

There you have it.

In our minds, Radcliffe obviously was very talented (former world junior XC winner) and she worked incredibly hard. Perhaps more importantly, Radcliffe reveals in the same Kessel piece that – unlike a lot of athletes – she loved the hermit lifestyle. “People say they don’t like being locked away in a training cage, but I was actually happy living like that,” said Radcliffe.

We saw that love first-hand, as to insure she got good rest at Hartmann’s facility, Radcliffe moved a single bed into the living room, away from the bedroom, which was on the noisy street. Sleeping with your spouse or a good night’s sleep? Radcliffe chose the sleep.

Was she on the juice? Nothing except her own mojo in our eyes. Well, we guess her secret edge was her her ability to employ and withstand the punishing treatment of Hartmann. The jaded might call daily ice baths, naps and punishing physio work legalized doping – we call it just old-fashioned hard work.

More: Paula Radcliffe And Her Husband Reflect On Her 2:15:25 Marathon WR Which She Ran At London 10 Years Ago
*LRC Vault Weldon Johnson writes about pacing Radcliffe to her 2:17:18 world record in 2002

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Since we are talking about legends who seemingly will die without an Olympic marathon gold to their name, Haile Gebrselassie turned 40 last week.

Since he’s been around for forever, it’s only hard to believe he’s 40 because in many ways Gebrselassie seems ageless. At age 39 last year, he ran 27:20, 60:52, and 2:08. They might as well start burning old copies of Masters record books right now.

More:  Haile Gebrselassie: Happy 40th Birthday!
*On 40th BDay – Haile Recaps His 5 Favorite Races And His Biggest Racing Regret Haile’s favorite race? The Sydney 10k. His one regret? No Olympic gold in the marathon.
*10 Of Haile’s Greatest Races

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To be truthful, it’s hard for us to even talk about the 2013 Virgin London Marathon women’s race as the wheelchair racer, Josh Cassidy, colliding into the Olympic champ Tiki Gelana was very troubling to us. Her career could have been ruined (and still may have – we’ll see if she’s injury-prone done the road). At a minimum, half a year’s worth of work was wasted.

Like journalists Pat Butcher and Toni Reavis, we thought the feel-good press release put out after the accident on Sunday by the London organizers was a joke. It didn’t make us feel any better about the collision – it made us feel worse. Don’t know what we are talking about? Well, London released the following statement after the accident:

“In the 33rd Virgin London Marathon today, an unfortunate accident happened between Olympic champion Tiki Gelana in the elite women’s race and Josh Cassidy, the world’s fastest wheelchair racer, next to a feeding station.”

“We regard this as a racing incident which happened in the midst of two fiercely contested battles between some of the best marathon competitors in the world.”

“We understand that the athletes involved were very frustrated by what happened as it clearly had an impact on their prospects in the races, but we believe neither competitor was to blame.”

“We have spoken to both athletes about the incident and are satisfied that they accept it was an accident and do not hold any person or organisation responsible.”

“It’s against this background that we will consider any future improvements in consultation with our athletes and all the relevant partners and stakeholders.”

We thought Pat Butcher’s response to that press release was right on the money when he wrote:

And as for the organisers’ crass statement, issued late Sunday evening, attempting to absolve themselves of responsibility for the collision, and doubtless pressuring Gelana and Cassidy to make placatory statements, well it might as well have been scripted by any number of bankers, who accept million dollar bonuses for mismanagement, while trying to make believe they’ve done nothing wrong.

The London  statement makes it look like the incident was just an unstoppable act of God. Far from it. Why can’t anyone just say the truth: “What happened on sudden was a travesty. While it was an accident it is something that must NEVER happen again.”

In our minds, London is to blame #1. To start the wheelchair racers after the elite women and then have such a narrow course by the aid stations is beyond stupid.  Then the wheelchair racer Cassidy gets the second-most blame. Just as a person driving a car has to look out for pedestrians or a person on a bike has to announce their passing of runners/walkers, the same should be true for wheelchair racers, but he should never have been put in the spot of having to possibly put himself at a competitive disadvantage to insure he didn’t take out a runner.

More: Pat Butcher writing about the collision at the 2013 Virgin London Marathon.
Toni Reavis writing about the collision at the 2013 Virgin London Marathon.

*LRC Priscah Jeptoo Finishes First In Women’s London Marathon Marred By Wheelchair Collision
*Paula Radcliffe And Her Husband Reflect On Her 2:15:25 Marathon WR, Which She Ran At London 10 Years Ago
*Steve Cram Talks About Paula Radcliffe’s WR: “From a purely running perspective, that was the best performance I’ve ever commentated on.”

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What About The Sport? Meet Promotion Taken To A New Level

If the above clip on the North Dakota anchor is our Video of The Week, then the following has to be our Photo Of The Week:

Usain Bolt promotional shot for 2013 Rome Golden Gala
Usain Bolt promotional shot for 2013 Rome Golden Gala.

The photo is part of a promotion for Rome’s Golden Gala meet – the 5th Diamond League meet of the year. The other athletes are some of Italy’s bigger track stars (and people were not quite sure we’ve ever heard of) – 2012 Olympic Games Triple Jump bronze medallist Fabrizio Donato, 2012 World Junior Championships High Jump gold medallist Alessia Trost, and the 2013 European indoor Triple Jump champion Daniele Greco.

If you watch the YouTube video of the behind-scenes look at the photo shoot, you’ll see that Bolt didn’t actually pose for the shoot. Presumably, he’s in Jamaica training. Another guy posed for him and he was photo-shopped in. Good work nonetheless. Other meets need to be this creative.

More: Bolt now part of the Rome Royal family

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Yohan Blake Is Hurt

There was some disappointing sprint news last week. 2011 100m world champ Yohan Blake is out six weeks with a hamstring injury, which is a shame. Sports excel when there are rivalries at the top – remember Magic and Bird, Federer and Nadal, Borg and McEnroe. Usain Bolt needs a rival.

The other big sprint news last week was that 2004 Olympic 200m champ Shawn Crawford got a 2-year doping ban for 3 ‘whereabouts’ violations. Then it came out that he’s been retired since last year. USADA/WADA need to be careful in announcing this stuff. Banning retired people only hurts the credibility of the anti-doping movement. If the retirement is illegitimate, then ban him. If not, don’t announce it as people need to believe believe all doping bans are serious. For similar reasons, we think marijuana suspensions are ridiculous.

More: 2004 Olympic 200 Champ Shawn Crawford Gets 2-Year Doping Ban *WADA Statement *More
*Yohan Blake Out For Up To 6 Weeks With Hamstring Injury

More Drug News: Leaked Internal UCI Memo Shows That Lance Amstrong Tested Positive Four Times During The 1999 Tour de France

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2003 World 5,000 champ Eliud Kipchoge’s Marathon Debut Goes Incredibly Well

Kipchoge, who twice also was an Olympic medallist at 5,000 (2004 bronze, 2008 silver) and ran 12:46 in 2004 and still 12:55 last year,  ran 2:05:30 in Hamburg. Not too shabby for the 28-year-old who didn’t even move up to the half marathon until last year.

Considering his first half marathon last year was a 59:25 win and he’s the fourth fastest man in history at 5,000, we guess his marathon success isn’t a shock.

He’s now one of three men in history to have run sub-12:50, sub-26:50 and sub-2:06:00.

The other two? Haile Gebrselassie and Paul Tergat.

More: 2008 Olympic 5k Silver Medalist Eliud Kipchoge And Former Half Marathon World Champ Wilson Kiprop Will Go Head-To-Head At Haspa Marathon On Sunday 

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Recommended Reads

2013 London Marathon Statistical Reference File We didn’t have this link up on the homepage but if you like stats, then Ken Nakamura has every stat imaginable associated with the London Marathon.

Paula Radcliffe And Her Husband Reflect On Her 2:15:25 Marathon WR, Which She Ran At London 10 Years Ago Her physio at the time, Gerard Hartmann, says she has the highest pain tolerance of anyone he’s ever worked with. “She would hurt me rather than me hurt her. She would actually break me down because I’d have to go so deep into the sinews, I would have to ice my thumbs afterwards I was in such pain.”

LRC Meet Conner Paez: “Please don’t cut off my leg. Please just don’t amputate my leg. I can’t lose my leg. I need to run.” Two years ago, Conner Paez was on top of the world as a freshman at the University of Pennsylvania (8:16, 14:18). Then his life turned in a second as he was broadsided by a car while on his motor bike. The injuries were bad, very bad. He almost lost his leg, then some toes. Doctors told him he’d never compete again. What’s he doing this weekend? Competing again.

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Quotes Of The Day & Last Week’s Homepages:

Note: To see a particular day’s homepage, click on the hyperlink of the date. The hyperlink below the date on the quotes will take you to that particular article – not that day’s homepage.


Monday 4/22:

“Around the 25k mark, the Marathon Gods seemingly woke up from sleeping in on a Sunday morning and decided to flex their muscles. The ridiculous talk in recent years of a sub-2 hour marathon or some of the talk this week that made a world record seem almost inevitable… obviously greatly angered them as they struck with a vengeance …

The true winner was the marathon distance, but that wasn’t clear until the very end. There would be quite some drama getting there.”

– LRC’s recap of the Sunday’s Virgin London Marathon, where 26.2 miles triumphed over arguably the world’s greatest men’s marathon field assembled


Sunday 4/21:

“I can see why people think that record cannot be clean. I work with international athletes who ask me all the time, ‘Radcliffe must have taken drugs, you cannot run that fast, it’s impossible.’ And I always say I have 100% proof and confidence there is no doubt in my mind … I’ve lived with Paula. You know athletes, you can get a sense of it … Paula would check everything, in restaurants if she got up to go to the loo she would make sure Gary sat by her drinks in case anyone spiked anything, it was one of her big worries where would the bottles be stored the night before a race – could they be contaminated? That 2:15.25 is copper-sealed, a pure record. I can’t say that about all the records out there, but I can put my hand on my heart and say it is the purest record out there and the best record.”

Paula Radcliffe‘s former physio, Gerard Hartmann, who spent 7 weeks living with Paula in Albuquerque, NM in the buildup to the 2003 London Marathon, talking about her 2:15:25 World Record which is now 10 years old.


Saturday 4/20:


“Runners, run -through the cold, through the heat, through the rain, through the snow. While the running world tries to make sense of the senseless bombings at Monday’s Boston Marathon, we can’t think of a better way to carry on, than by running.”

“The running world will keep running Sunday on the grandest stage possible at the Virgin London Marathon with the greatest men’s marathon field ever assembled in the history of sport.* While we should never forget what happened Monday in Boston, we would be doing a disservice to what happened in Boston if we did not celebrate the greatness and pageantry taking place Sunday in London.”

“Consider this….All five of the marathon majors course record holders will be racing on Sunday in London. And all five of them are still in the prime of their careers.”

– Excerpt from our London Marathon preview where we break down what we are calling the strongest men’s marathon field ever.


Friday 4/19:

“(The prison) that is my place of work. Running is just a short period of time. After I retire I need to go and work.”

– Olympic marathon champ Stephen Kiprotich stating that he’ll go back to work as a prison guard after his running career is over.


Thursday 4/18:

“It’s such a human sport. I don’t think these bombers get that – that when they attack the Boston Marathon, they don’t just attack America. They attack all the countries with runners in the marathon.”

– 4-time Boston Marathon champion Bill Rodgers talking about the attacks at the Boston Marathon on Monday. He also said that he had been considering running Boston again in 2015 (the 40th anniversary of his first win), but that now he thinks he will do it next year, saying, “I think I am going to do it, no matter what. I want to do my part. Make a statement.”


Wednesday 4/17:

“We still do not know who set off the Boston Marathon bombs or why. But we do know now, after 9/11, after all the terrorism the world has seen in the last decade, what the right reaction is: wash the sidewalk, wipe away the blood, and let whoever did it know that while they have sickeningly maimed and killed some of our brothers and sisters, they have left no trace on our society or way of life.”

Thomas L. Friedman writing in the New York Times about moving forward after the horrific events at the Boston Marathon on Monday.


Tuesday 4/16

“The athletic aspect of the Boston Marathon feels hopelessly unimportant now, as it should. There are dead, there are injured, there are lives permanently changed and trauma that will never completely fade.

There’s also abundant outrage, and justifiably so. The act is unconscionable and the vulnerability is universal. What appears to have happened in Boston could happen anywhere.

In the coming days, it is almost certain that more will be learned about the explosions and the motives behind it. A clearer picture will emerge. There will be eyewitness accounts and mourning and a stillness that comes with heartache. What there won’t be – at least for a long time, is a finish line.”

Jason Gay writing in the Wall Street Journal about the horrific events at the Boston Marathon yesterday. LetsRun.com felt sport was unimportant yesterday as well and stopped its own post-Boston coverage. We’ll resume it at a time TBD.


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