German Fernandez Does the 10k, Meet The Breakthrough Athlete of the Year: Violah Jepchumba, Plus Martin Lel’s Brother, NCAA Leaders Galore, Leo Manzano Struggles But Says All is Well, Pregnancy Photos and More

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The Week That Was In Running – March 28 – April 3, 2016

by LetsRun.com
April 6, 2016

Past editions of The Week That Was can be found here. Questions or comments? Please email us or post them on our fan forum.

April Fools Day was last week and it’s always a big deal at LetsRun.com. Check out the 2016 April Fools page for LetsRun.com here. Also read about the interesting people who make up the winners in our LRC $200,016 Running Warehouse World Indoors Prediction Contest.

Last week was a hectic one as the US track season got underway in more serious fashion with the  Florida and Texas Relays as well as the first Stanford meet of the year.

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Female PR Of The Week I

Without a doubt it has to go to 25-year-old Kenyan Violah Jepchumba. Our result databases reveals that last year she ran four half-marathons and broke 70:00 in just one of them. She’s got zero track races on her CV. Coming into last weekend, she had modest road pbs of 32:09 and 69:29 for the half-marathon.

Now, thanks to spectacular run at the Sportisimo Prague Half-Marathon, she is one of just six women to ever have broken 66 for a half-marathon and just the third person to do it on a record-eligible, not point-to-point course.

The 8 Sub-66 Half-Marathons Ever Run (Via alltime-allathletics.com)

 1      65:07      Florence Kiplagat              KEN     27.02.87    1      Barcelona            15.02.2015
 2      65:12      Florence Kiplagat              KEN     27.02.87    1      Barcelona                16.02.2014
 3      65:39*     Mary Keitany                   KEN     18.01.82    1      Newcastle-South Shields  07.09.2014
 4      65:40*     Paula Radcliffe                GBR     17.12.73    1      Newcastle-South Shields  21.09.2003
 5      65:44*     Susan Chepkemei                KEN     25.06.75    1      Lisbon                   01.04.2001
 6      65:45*     Priscah Jeptoo                 KEN     26.06.84    1      Newcastle-South Shields  15.09.2013
 7      65:50      Mary Keitany                   KEN     18.01.82    1      Ra's Al Khaymah          18.02.2011
 8      65:51      Violah Jepchumba               KEN     23.10.90    1      Prague                   20.04.2016

*= run on a non-record-eligible course.

Perhaps even more impressive than the finishing time was the way Jepchumba ran the race. Her 10k split was 30:29. Yes, 30:29. That’s 64:18 pace. The first 5k was even faster as Ethiopia’s Worknesh Degefa, who ended up second in 66:14, hit 5k in 15:05 with some help from her husband, who was a pacer.

After the race, Jepchumba said she was shocked by the time. “I was hoping to run maybe 68,” said Jepchumba after the race. “If I had a pace maker, I would have been able to run 65:10.”

Jepchumba doesn’t need a pacemaker to run faster. She needs someone to hold her back. Her 5k splits were 15:05-15:24-15:52-16:03.

In the men’s race, Daniel Wanjiru did his best Geoffrey Kamworor impersonation as he overcame a mid-race fall and still defended his crown in 59:20.

If you are looking to PR for 13.1, you might want to try Prague as the race is very fast. The weather this year was pristine. The recap of the race described the conditions as a “cool, dry, windless, and glorious early spring day.” Overall, eight of the top 10 men and seven of the top 10 women ran PRs.

Top 10 Results – Prize money via RResults Weekly

Men’s Top 10. 
1. Daniel Kinyua Wanjiru, KEN        59:20 PB € 5000 + 15,000i
[14:10 / 28:14 / 42:26 / 56:19]
2. Barselius Kipyego, KEN            59:30 PB   2500 + 10,000ii
3. Adugna Takele, ETH                59:40 PB   1200 + 10,000ii
4. Nobert Kipkoech Kigen, KEN        59:42 PB   1000
5. Peter Cheruiyot Kirui, KEN        59:50       600
6. Felix Kipchirchir Kandie, KEN   1:00:04 PB    300
7. Abraham Kapsis Kipyatich, KEN   1:00:16       200
8. Yohannes Ghebregergish, ERI     1:00:21 PB    100
9. Benard Kiplangat Bett, KEN      1:00:36 PB
10. Kenneth Keter, KEN              1:01:48
Women’s Top 10
1. Violah Jepchumba, 1990, KEN     1:05:51 PB/WL/CR* € 5000 + 5000* + 25,000i
[15:05 / 30:29 / 46:21 / 62:24]
2. Worknesh Degefa, ETH            1:06:14 PB          2500 + 10,000ii
[15:05 / 30:34 / 46:34 / 62:47]
3. Gladys Jepkemoi Yator, KEN      1:08:39 PB          1200
4. Lucy Karimi, KEN                1:08:43 PB          1000
5. Isabella Ochichi, KEN           1:09:03              600
6. Risper Chebet, KEN              1:09:24 PB           300
7. Katerina Kowalska, POL          1:10:06 NR           200
8. Afera Godfay, ETH               1:10:10              100
9. Sara Moreira, POR               1:10:25
10. Eva Vrabcova, CZE               1:11:06 PB

More: Recap: Unheralded Violah Jepchumba Runs Sensational 65:51; Daniel Wanjiru Overcomes Fall and Repeats As Men’s Champ in 59:20
*Race website *Photo of women’s winner

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Female PR Of The Week II

Photo from ABC 13 story on Bruce

Photo from ABC 13 story on Bruce

The first big Stanford meet of the year isn’t as fast as the second one so not as many people hit the Olympic qualifying standards. Someone who did get the Olympic standard at Stanford was Stephanie Rothstein Bruce, just six months after giving birth to her second child in the span of 15 months. In between babies, Bruce ran just three low-key races, none particularly fast. Other than that, she didn’t race at all from July 2013 to February 2016, yet she was able to PR by 10 seconds at Stanford.

With her absence from the competitive side of the sport, Bruce’s profile has increased as her honest pictures on Instagram of her stomach during and after pregnancy have gone viral, gaining her an article in People magazine as well as a feature on ABC TV.

More: Stephanie Bruce Hopes Her Story Helps Other Women Struggling with their Post-Baby Bodies: ‘No One Told Me All of This’
*ABC piece on Stephanie Rothstein Bruce
*Bruce’s Instagram

More: MB: SCOTT FAUBLE!!!!! 

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Male PR Of The Week I / Stat of the Week I

43.27 – number of seconds that University of Portland alum Scott Fauble, now running for Hoka One One NAZ Elite, took off of his 10k PR when he ran 28:00.43 (previous pb of 28:43.70).

0.43 – seconds that Fauble missed the Olympic standard by.

We hope Fauble isn’t too upset about not getting the standard. If you PR by that much, you shouldn’t be upset you didn’t get the standard, particularly when the Olympics are still like a long shot. What a run.

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In 2008 Fernandez was atop the US high school ranks

Male Pr Of The Week II / Stat of The Week II

28:06.64 – German Fernandez‘s 10,000 PR after the former NCAA 1500 champ made his debut at Stanford last week.
28:06.58 LetsRun.com co-founder Weldon Johnson‘s 10,000 PR.

Welcome to the 28:06 club German.

Not all LetsRunners were as thrilled as we were to see the time. One poster, “Devil Dog,” quipped on the messageboard, “Good to see him run a decent race, and I hope he keeps improving, but 28:06 isn’t much to be excited about. This isn’t 2003. It would be nice to see him in the Peyton [sic] Jordan running 27:30.”

We don’t know if “Devil Dog” was purposely trying to reference Johnson but 28:06.58 is the time Johnson ran to get 4th at USAs in 2003, beating four-time U.S. Olympian Abdi Abdirahman in the process. To contend for an Olympic spot as an American in 2016 you’d better be able to run sub-28:00 but both Fauble and Fernandez are knocking at the door. This was Fernandez’s first 10k. He’s got almost three months to improve before the Trials.

Fernandez credits his recent improvement in form to the fact that he spent most of the winter training by himself or with women (Amy Cragg and Shalane Flanagan). “It’s easier when I train with the guys, but I see when I train at my own pace and run recovery days at my own pace, I feel better every day. I’m not saying that training with the guys has been bad, but I think there were just days I was running too hard,” said Fernandez to Runner’s World

More: MB: German Fernandez is BACK!! *MB: Official 2016 Stanford Invite Live Discussion Thread

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Joshua Cheptegei wins Carlsbad

Joshua Cheptegei wins Carlsbad

Carslbad 5000 and Fast Master Performances

2014 World Junior 10,000 champ Joshua Cheptegei of Uganda, still just 19, is someone whose name you will want to remember. Last year, he improved his pb to 27:27 and was top 10 (9th) at Worlds in the 10,000. This year, he’s two for two on the year as he followed up a 27:46 road 10k win in Spain with a 13:25 5k win at Carlsbad.

Top 5 Men at Carlsbad – RResults Weekly
1. Joshua Cheptegei, 19, UGA       13:24 NR $5,000
2. Wilson Too, 25, KEN             13:29 PB  3,500
3. Debeli Gezmu, 19, ETH           13:38 PB  2,000
4. Bernard Lagat, 41, Tucson, AZ   13:38 WR  6,500**
5. Hassan Mead, 26, Eugene, OR     13:39 PB  2,300*

Top 5 Women at Carlsbad – RResults Weekly
1. Meseret Defar, 32, ETH          15:02    $5,000
2. Caroline Kipkirui, 21, KEN      15:13 PB  3,500
3. Susan Kuijken, 29, NED          15:28 PB= 2,000
4. Diane Nukuri, 31, BDI           15:34 NR  1,000
5. Sarah Lahti, 21, SWE            15:52 PB    800

Lagat at Carlsbad 2016

Lagat at Carlsbad 2016

American Bernard Lagat broke his American masters road record of 13:40 by running 13:38. After the race, he said he’s planning on doing the 10,000 at the Olympics Trials. MB: Lagat has verbally committed to doing the 10000m at Oly Trials – top two spots are now gone to Rupp + Lagat. 

However, the masters performer of last week wasn’t Lagat. It was Kenya’s 42-year-old Kenneth Mungara, who took down his own masters world record of 2:08:42 in the marathon by running 2:08:38 at the Milano City Marathon in Milan, Italy. The only downside for Mungara was that he was unable to defend his title in Milan as he placed third.

Mungara’s exploits are pretty amazing. People say that two marathons in a year is a lot. Don’t tell that to Mungara. Milan was his fourth marathon in the last 365 days.

Kenneth Mungara’s Marathons Since Turning 41
2014

2:16:42   1st Stand Chart Singapore 7 Dec
2015
2:08:44  1st Milan 12 Apr
2:08:42  1st Gold Coast 5 Jul
2:18:36   5th Honolulu HI 13 Dec
2016
2:08:38  3rd Milan 3 Apr

More: Ernest Kiprono Ngeno (2:08:15) And Brigid Kosgei (2:27:45) Win Milan City Marathon
*Meseret Defar (15:02) And Joshua Cheptegei (13:24) Prevail At Carlsbad 5000 As Bernard Lagat Shatters His Own Masters World Record *Results

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Meet Martin Lel’s Little Brother – Cyprian Kotut

Cyprian Kotut is another name to keep in your brain. Kotut, 24, is the younger brother of five-time Abbott World Marathon Major winner Martin Lel. Four times, Kotut has broken 60:00 for 13.1 including twice in the U.S. in Philadelphia. Now that he’s moved up to the marathon, he’s done well as he ran 2:08:55 in his debut last year for 2nd in Milan and then won Paris on Sunday in 2:07:11.

If he can get down to 2:05, he’s got a future as he’s already got a million-dollar smile like Haile G.

Top 5 Men in Paris – Via Race Results Weekly
1. Cyprian Kotut, KEN         2:07:11 PB € 50,000
2. Laban Korir, KEN           2:07:29      30,000
3. Stephen Chemlany, KEN      2:07:37      20,000
4. Micah Kogo, KEN            2:08:03      10,000
5. Gebretsadik Abraha , ETH   2:08:17       8,000

Top 5 Women in Paris -Via Race Results Weekly
1. Visiline Jepkesho, KEN     2:25:53 € 25,000
2. Gulume Chala, ETH          2:26:14   15,000
3. Dinknesh Tefera, ETH       2:28:11   10,000
4. Rebecca Chesire, KEN       2:31:28    5,000
5. Yebrgual Melese, ETH       2:32:06    4,000

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1500 News of Note – Ayanleh Souleiman Appears To Be Healthy

It’s worth reporting that it Djibouti’s Ayanleh Souleiman, who had to be carted off in a wheelchair at World Indoors after leading the first half of the men’s 1500 final, is feeling good again as he ran and won a 1000 at the Djibouti International Meeting last week in 2:21.65.

As far as what caused Souleiman to be carted off in Portland, we reached out to his agent Ulf Saletti, who gave the following response:

“Souleiman was not feeling well, he had started to feel a cold (or a light flu) the day before but he told coach he was feeling better race day but we think he wanted to compete so much that he didn’t want to admit he should not have run and as you saw, he should not have started but it’s easy to say afterwards. The wheelchair, I guess was just that the medics saw he was finished after the finish line and they took him in a wheelchair as a way to help him get from the track in an easy way. He was never going to hospital.”

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Someone Break Up The Women Of The Ivy League

Last week was quite a week for the women of the Ivy League as three different women vaulted to the top of the NCAA leaderboards at Stanford.

In the women’s 800, Princeton senior Cecilia Barowski, who was 6th at NCAA indoors, picked up the NCAA leader and U.S. Olympic Trials qualifier by running 2:02.62.

In the 10,000, Harvard sophomore Courtney Smith, who was 8th at NCAAs indoors in the 5000, destroyed the Ivy league record of 32:44.11 by running 32:08.32 to pick up both the Olympic standard of 32:15 and the NCAA leader. And in the women’s steeple, Harvard senior Paige Kouba ran an NCAA leader of 9:50.21.

At the Florida Relays, Harvard picked up a third NCAA leader in the 200 if you are counting only wind-legal times, as superstar freshman Gabby Thomas ran 22.75. Arkansas’ Taylor Ellis-Watson has the fastest overall time of 22.70 (SMU’s Latessa Johnson has also run 22.75) but Thomas’ performance was the most impressive when you factor in the wind (Thomas has a wind of +0.6 m/s while Ellis-Watson had +3.9 and Johnson had +3.7).

But kids remember: Harvard still sucks. (Wejo, one of the co-founders of LetsRun.com, went to Yale).

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Murphy Winning NCAA Indoors

Murphy Winning NCAA Indoors

NCAA Marks Pick Up Steam / Clayton Murphy Continues To Roll / Leo Manzano Struggles

Speaking of NCAA leaders, here are the other NCAA leaders put up last week at the various meets around the country, including a big 1500 PR for NCAA mile champ Henry Wynne of UVA (3:38.35, previous pb of 3:41.19). That mark (as well as the runner-up mark of 3:38.82 by Ole Miss’s Craig Engels) beat the Florida Relays meet record of 3:40.2h that Dick Buerkle of the NYAC had held since 1973.

Men
200 – Ahmed Ali – Alabama – 20.16 (wind: 2.0) – Florida Relays
400 – Kunle Fasasi – Florida – 45.43 – Florida Relays
800 – Andres Arroyo – Florida – 1:45.78 – Florida Relays
1500 – Henry Wynne – UVA – 3:38.35 – Florida Relays
Steeple – Zak Seddon – FSU – 8:33.09 – Stanford Invitational
5000 – Thomas Awad – Penn – 13:41.77 – Stanford Invitational
10,000 – Aaron Nelson – Washington – 28:53.70 – Stanford Invitational
4 x 100 – TCU – 39.08 – Texas Relays
4 x 400 – LSU – 3:01.83 – Texas Relays
HJ – Trey Culver – Texas Tech – 7’5″ – Texas Relays
PV – Devin King – SE Louisiana – 18’8.25″ – Texas Relays
TJ – Matthew O’Neal – South Florida – 54’10.75″ – Texas Relays
Javelin – Ioannis Kyriazis – Texas A&M – 268’7
” – Texas Relays
Decathlon – William Harrison – Stanford – 7842 – Texas Relays

Women
100 – Morolake Akinosun – Texas – 11.07 (wind: 1.9) – Texas Relays
1500 – Marta Freitas – Miss. State – 4:12.91 – Florida Relays

5000 – Dominique Scott – Arkansas – 15:25.10 – Stanford Invitational
400h – Claudia Francis – Florida – 56.43 – Florida Relays
4 x 100 – Florida – 42.85 – Florida Relays
4 x 400 – Florida – 3:26.28 – Florida Relays
HJ – Akela Jones – Kansas Sate – 6’2.75″ – Bruins Legends of T&F Invitational
PV – Megan Clark – Duke – 14’9.5″ – Battle of the Blues
TJ – Jazzelena Black – S. Dakota State – 43’9.75″ – Texas State Bobcat Invitational
Discus – Tera Novy – USC – 196’6″ – California Collegiate Invitational
Heptathlon – Taliyah Brooks – Arkansas – 5991 – Texas Relays

One guy who just missed the NCAA leader was Michigan’s Mason Ferlic who ran 8:33.95 in the steeplechase, but his run impressed us more than the 8:33.09 NCAA leader put up at Stanford by FSU’s Zak Seddon as Seddon lost his race (Hillary Bor won in 8:30.70) whereas second place in Ferlic’s race at the Battle of the Blues was 8:58.56. What is the Battle of the Blues, you ask? It was a scored meet between UNC, Duke and Michigan – all teams with blue on their uniforms – that was broadcast on ESPN3 (4-8 p.m. ET) . A track meet on TV needs to be less than four hours long, but we applaud them for doing a fan-friendly meet and putting it in front of viewers on ESPN3.

Battle of Blues Team Scores

Women’s Team Scores
1. Michigan 83
2. Duke 68
3. North Carolina 48
Men’s Team Scores
1. North Carolina 83
2. Michigan 78.5
3. Duke 40.5

Another guy who didn’t put up an NCAA leader but also was a big winner last week was NCAA indoor 800 champ Clayton Murphy of Akron. At the Texas Relays, the first of what is likely to be many battles between Murphy and UTEP freshman sensation Jonah Koech proved to be a rout as Murphy won easily in 1:47.38. Koech was third in 1:48.32 while Leo Manzano, who recently made a coaching change from John Hayes back to Ryan Ponsonby, was a distant fifth in 1:49.92.

For comparison’s sake, Manzano won the Texas Relays in each of the last two years (1:46.63 last year and 1:47.34 in 2014).

Manzano made his sevehth straight U.S. outdoor team in 2015

Manzano made his seventh straight U.S. outdoor team in 2015

2016 Texas Relays Men’s 800 Top 5
1. Clayton Murphy, JR – Akron           1:47.38
2. Brian Bell, FR – Houston             1:47.94 PB
3. Jonah Koech, FR – UTEP (KEN)         1:48.32
4. Abraham Alvarado, JR – Stanislaus St 1:48.65
5. Leo Manzano, Hoka One One            1:49.92

If you think the result means you should write off Manzano, we’d urge you to realize it’s only the beginning of April and remind you that Manzano is often up and down in races but not when it matters most. History has shown us he’s finished in the top 3 at USAs in the 1500 for each of the last 10 years.

Believe it or not, Manzano was actually upbeat after the race. In a post-race interview with MileSplit, Manzano said he’s had a good last month of training.

“Unfortunately, I don’t think my fitness is quite where it needs to be [but] considering where we’re at [in] the year and the setbacks I had this spring, I think we are in a good place,” said Manzano. “I’ve been able to put in about four to five weeks of good training. Unfortunately, I had a couple  setbacks this spring – just some personal and family setbacks – and unfortunately couldn’t train the way I need to train. But that’s part of life. You gotta get back up and continue to go.”

Later in the interview, Manzano added that he was coming off of a 70-mile week and considering that and the fact he had some setbacks earlier in the spring he’s happy. “I don’t think I’m in a bad spot. I think it’s going to take a little more fine-tuning. That’s all it is. We’ve had some great workouts. I think the only thing we are missing is the speed endurance but that’s only a matter of fine-tuning,” said Manzano, who said he wants to be ready for ‘prime time’ when the Trials roll around.

Manzano was very complimentary of getting the chance to race Clayton Murphy. “I don’t feel old by any means but it’s always nice to get fresh blood into the racing and onto the scene so it was exciting racing him.”

More: MB: Clayton Murphy Smokes Leo Manzano and Jonah Koech in 800 **Texas Relays Results *Florida Relays Results *Stanford Invite Results *All NCAA Results

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Track Fan Of The Week

Before he was a Heisman Trophy-winning quarterback, Robert Griffin III was a superstar track athlete. Apparently, Griffin is still a track fan as he showed up to watch the action at the Texas Relays last week.

That got us to wondering how good RGIII would have been if he’d stuck with track. Griffin last competed in track as an 18-year-old during the spring of 2008 in what should have been his senior year of high school, when he enrolled early at Baylor so he could attend spring football practice. Since he was in college, he could no longer do high school meets so once football was done, he ran NCAA track. How did he do?

Quite well. He won the Big 12 meet in the 400 hurdles in 49.22 and went on to place third at NCAAs. The Olympic standard in the 400 hurdles is 49.40. Ridiculous.

Griffin still is ranked in the top 10 all-time for U.S. juniors in the 400h. He’s #10 and it needs to be pointed out that if he’d stuck with track, he’d most likely be a lot higher on the list as he would still have been eligible for U-20 competition in 2009. It also should be remembered that the 400h is a powerhouse event for the U.S. Of the nine guys ahead of Griffin, the least-accomplished of the bunch was a guy (Kenneth Ferguson) who won a world junior silver medal. Six won at least an NCAA title, another won a world junior title and another ran 1:43.84 for 800.

Career highlights of The 10 Fastest U.S. Junior 400 Hurdlers (list by TFN).
1. 48.02 Danny Harris (Iowa St) 06/17/84 – NCAA champ, Olympic and world silver medallist.
2. 48.51 Kerron Clement (Florida) 07/16/04 – NCAA champ, 2-time world champ, Olympic silver medallist.
3. 48.52 Johnny Dutch (South Carolina) 06/29/08 – NCAA champ.
4. 48.62 Brandon Johnson (UCLA) 07/16/04 – World Jr silver medal, 1:43.84 800.
5. 48.68 Bayano Kamani (Baylor) 06/05/99 – 2 NCAA titles, 5th at Olympics.
6. 48.68 Jeshua Anderson (Washington St) 07/11/08 – 3 NCAA titles.
7. 48.72 Angelo Taylor (Georgia Tech) 06/06/97 – 2 Olympic 400h golds, NCAA champ.
8. 48.79 Kenneth Ferguson (South Carolina) 05/18/03 – World jr silver medalist.
9. 49.19 Chris Carter (BYU) 06/10/06 – World jr champ, 3rd NCAA.
10. 49.22(A) Robert Griffin (Baylor) – 05/18/08 – Won Heisman, took Washington Redskins to playoffs as a rookie.

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Messageboard Thread and Post of The Week

This week we started a thread on the messageboard as 2016 is the 50th anniversary of the first women’s finisher at the Boston Marathon. Many running fans know of Kathrine Switzer, but Switzer wasn’t the first Boston women’s finisher as Switzer ran the race in 1967, one year after Bobbi Gibb. Gibb ran Boston in ’66, ’67 and ’68 and we wanted to know why Switzer is more famous than Gibb so we started the following thread on our fan forum / messaboard.

Running historians – Can you tell me why/how Kathrine Switzer became as or more famous than Bobbi Gibb?

We’ve always said the best part about the website is you the visitor and proving that point was the fact that 1968 Boston Marathon winner Amby Burfoot, who just finished writing a book about the early decades of women’s running, chimed in with a great response which you can read in its entirety here. Below is an excerpt:

Gibb is the shy, introverted, artsy-loner type–like many other runners. After 1968, when she was first woman at Boston for the third year in a row, she basically moved on with her life. She is brilliant, charismatic, forward-thinking, but not a promoter … of herself or anyone else. She has done everything from neuroscience to environmental law to painting and sculpture. There is now a movement to have her sculpt a lifesize image of herself somewhere along the Boston Marathon course. Joan Samuelson is Honorary Chair of this project. You can contribute here, http://www.firstgiving.com/528…fundraiser.

Gibb and Switzer are different personalities, yes, but both made important contributions. We are lucky to have had them as pioneer women runners. This year’s 50th anniversary (Gibb) and next year’s 50th (Switzer) at the Boston Marathon should be wonderful celebrations that provide great glimpses backward.

I first ran Boston in 1965 when there were no women runners. This year there will be 13,000+. What a fantastic change in our sport!

Burfoot’s book came out on Tuesday. Great timing. We’ll review it in the coming weeks but you can buy a copy on Amazon below:

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Quotes of the Week (that weren’t quote of the day)

#1 Maybe Being  A World Record Holder Isn’t As Glamorous As You Thought

Genzebe lives with Tirunesh, sharing a bedroom with her baby nephew, and when she becomes flustered following a question about her love life, Tirunesh protectively steers the conversation elsewhere. (For the record, Genzebe has a boyfriend, but he is not a runner, and she doesn’t want to talk about him.)

-excerpt from a piece by Chloe Malle in Vogue that we very much enjoyed on the Dibaba sisters.

More: MB: Not a primadonna – Genzebe Dibaba shares a room in Tirunesh Dibaba’s house with her 1-year old nephew!

#2 Bernie Sanders and Donald Trump Are Popular For The Same Reason That Track and Field Is Unpopular

“The public is getting pretty inured to the fact that competitions are fixed, and they will stop watching and then sponsors will stop sponsoring and it could all go down the tubes,” (said Dick Pound).

Jeez, you think?

But isn’t that exactly the same cynicism that is fueling Donald Trump’s march to the Republican nomination, and that is keeping Bernie Sanders competitive in the Dem race against Hillary Clinton?  The public believes we live in an age of fraud, be it in the realm of government, religion, business, or sport. Until a level of trust is reestablished, no institution will be immune from the cynicism that threatens to unsettle life and society in the 21st century.

excerpt from a piece on ToniReavis.com called Odds & Ends.

#3 Doesn’t Every Kid Go To Colorado Each Summer So Dad Can Do Altitude Training?

“Until I was 7, we’d come out to Boulder for my dad’s training every summer. I did not know everyone didn’t do that—that kids don’t go to Colorado for their dad’s altitude training.”

Neely Spence-Gracy, the daughter of 1991 World Championship marathon medallist Steve Spence, talking in a Competitor.com article on her upcoming marathon debut in Boston.

More Boston News: LRC Geoffrey Mutai Pulls Out Of 2016 Boston As He Doesn’t Hit His “Training Goals” – 2:20 Marathoner Amane Beriso Added To Women’s Field 

#4 Just What We Thought – Not Everyone at Football Powerhouses Likes Track and Field

Memorial Stadium also hosted the UIL Championships and five editions of the NCAA Championships. Doubtlessly the biggest track crowds ever in the state of Texas were at one of these meets, but the numbers were often purposefully underreported (when they were reported at all). This was because Jones Ramsey, Texas’ longtime sports information director, detested track and field and did not want to give the impression that it was popular. According to Track and Field News managing editor Garry Hill, he said “Why, I’d drive 50 miles for a track meet…. in the other direction!”

-excerpt from an article last week on DailyRelay.com about Texas’ track and field stadiums.

#5 Was The Next Mo Farah Found in A Refugee Camp in Kenya?

“You know, Mo is Somali, and I am Somali, and I would be very happy to be like him in the coming years, and if it is possible, in Rio.”

– Somali refugee Mohammed Daud Abubakar talking in an AFP article last week on how a group of African refugees are now training at high-altitude camp in Kenya and hoping to be on the IOC’s refugee team this summer.

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Weekly Free Coaching Advice – Please Appreciate Being A HS or College Athlete

Are you a high school or college athlete? Do you appreciate how good you have it? We bet you don’t. When you are out of school, you most likely will have to pay for meet entries, shoes, travel, lodging for meets, coaching, etc. and will be lucky to have training partners.

So please appreciate how good you have it. If you don’t want to take our advice, then take the advice of former Florida State runner Linden Hall (third at NCAAs in the 1500 in 2014) who blogged last week on Australia’s RunnersTribe.com about her experience in the U.S.

“Back on Aussie soil, many of the luxuries I had come to expect were no longer a ‘thing’ and I quickly realised we were far too spoilt at Florida State.

“Like what do you mean I don’t have a group of speedy girls to run with at 3pm everyday? And no one is going to drive me to a trail? Oh and I have to buy my own shoes!? This is madness.

“If you had told me a year ago I would miss America this much, I probably would have pushed you in a bush and called you crazy. Jokes on me now I guess.”

For those of you who rip the collegiate system, we think Hall’s take on it is right on the money, particularly when she wrote, “It’s an experience you can only find in US college athletics, that you almost have to be a part of to believe. It’s about as close as you can get to living like a professional athlete without actually being one.”

All of that being said, Hall’s transition to life as a pro in Australia appears to be going pretty well as she was 2nd in the Australian Olympic Trials last week.

Top 5 Results in Australian Olympic Trials Women’s 1500
1. Heidi See, 89, NSW, 4:14.17
2. Linden Hall, 91, VIC, 4:14.41
3. Jenny Blundell, 94, NSW, 4:15.12
4. Bridey Delaney, 89, NSW, 4:16.16
5. Zoe Buckman, 88, VIC, 4:16.18

More: *Saying goodbye to the NCAA | RT Journal by Linden Hall
*Australian Olympic Trials Full Results
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MB: Official 2016 Australian Olympic Trials Discussion Thread – Former Nova runner Sam McEntee won the 5,000

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Doping News of Note

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Other News Of Note

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Recommended Reads

We share with you some of our favorite articles from the last week in case you missed them.

2016 April Fools Page for LetsRun.com

Doping Scandal Comes to LRC $200,015 Running Warehouse World Indoors Prediction Contest One of the winners was coached by Tinman, Drew Hunter‘s coach, in HS.

The Dibaba Sisters Get Profile In Vogue: “Meet The Dibabas – The Fastest Family On The Planet” Definitely written from a different perspective than you see in most running articles, but some interesting insights here for fans of Tirunesh, Genzebe and all the other fast Dibaba women. We’re sorry to inform the men of LetsRun that Genzebe says she has a non-runner boyfriend.

Meet Liam Malone, the man who very well could succeed Oscar P as T43 Paralympic 400m champion in RioNew Zealand’s ‘blade runner’ wasn’t even an athlete four years ago. If you don’t think the blade technology is HUGE, read this.

Profile On Jared Ward Who’s Used Small Incremental Gains Each Year To Improve From Decent College Runner To Olympian Ward runs 120 miles a week (in six days with a rest day) and says believes was built for the marathon. After the Trials he celebrated with a Mexican cruise and now says he is approaching his Rio build-up just like every other race.

Take An Inside Look At The “No-Frills” Kenyan Training Camp Where Champions Eliud Kipchoge And Stephen Kiprotich Live And Train

Ben True Started Dating His Wife, Professional Triathlete Sarah True, In Part Thanks To A Broken Toe Which Forced Him To Cross Train With Her

Good read on the comeback of Tom Green – ultrarunning pioneer who was nearly killed in a freak tree-cutting accident last year In 1986, Green became the first person to finish four 100-mile races in a single year.

Previous Recommended Reads from other weeks can be found here.

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Quotes Of The Day And Last Week’s Home Pages

To see the actual quotes of the day from last week or last week’s home page or any home page, go to our archive page.

Past editions of The Week That Was can be found here. Questions or comments? Please email us or post them in our running fan forum.


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