Tag Archives: christine ohuruogu

The Morning Run- April 26

The Morning Run is back after a brief podcasting break.  You can listen to our latest episode here.

Kenya announced their squad for the Olympic marathon with much controversy and second-guessing.  Geoffrey Mutai was left off the team despite winning the Boston and New York marathons last year as was world record holder Patrick Makau.  Also, the head of the Athletics Kenya called Wilson Kipsang, William.

In the nicest way possible, Clyde Hart, coach of Sanya Richards-Ross, said that he does not consider Christine Ohuruogu a rival.  He is correct, but these are the exact statements that get completely blown out of proportion.  Regardless, I don’t think the US and UK teams will be sharing a tent at the Olympic stadium.

Tim Layden tweets that teammates Usain Bolt and Yohan Blake are no longer doing all their workouts together.  This is either nothing, or it is the next generation of ducking.  How can we expect them to race each other when they won’t even practice with one another?

Jesse Squire has a full breakdown of what has already happened and what is come at the Drake and Penn Relays.  A video of yesterday’s pole vault competition in the mall is included.

Track Focus provides a list of the elite entrants for the Drake Relays.  Hopefully using “Drake” a bunch in this post will result in an overflow of traffic to the Morning Run.  The only thing better would be if one of the races at Drake featured Rihanna.

Ryan Hall will run the New York City Marathon.

Joe Battaglia writes about Hall’s preparations for London and the Olympic course.

Doug Binder profiles a Penn Relays starter.

Kevin Liao’s power rankings for the distance events.  Seems like an oxymoron.

The top marks list from the USATF.

What are the best headphones for runningGizmodo tells you.

-Kevin

The Morning Run- April 13th

The Morning Run is a daily compilation of links, news and commentary.

Yesterday, the Jamaican Observer wrote about Yohan Blake’s plans to double in the 100 and 200 at this year’s Olympics.  While not surprising, it got me thinking about which decisions will have the most impact on the competition in London.  After not including relays, or assumed doubles, such as Usain Bolt, Walter Dix, Carmelita Jeter, Mo Farah, Galen Rupp, etc. I narrowed it down to four:

Allyson Felix: 100/200, 200/400, 200,  400

Despite the articles and intimations to the contrary, attempting the 100 seems like a long shot for Felix.  After all, if she were going to put another race on her schedule that comes before her favored 200, then it would be the 400, where she narrowly missed gold in 2011.  If she does opt for the 100, her path out of the Olympic Trials got a little bit easier with the news that Marshevet Hooker will be taking the year off.

However, it seems very hard to believe Felix would put an extra race in her legs, both in Eugene and London trying to beat 100 meter specialists.  The more realistic option is between the 200 and 400.  She tried the double last year in Daegu and came up a bit short finishing 3rd and 2nd respectively, but even with the Olympic year resurgence of Sanya Richards-Ross and Christine Ohuruogu, the 400 is still not nearly as deep as the 200.

So why would she drop the 400, a race where was .03 seconds away from gold at the 2011 World Championships?  The idea of racing Veronica Campbell-Brown and Carmelita Jeter fresh has to be tempting.  As does winning gold in the 200 where she earned the silver medal at the last two Olympics.

Chances of:

100/200:  1%

200/400:  75%

400:            25%

200:            50%

Abubaker Kaki: 800 or 1500

As they overlap on the London program, this is most likely and either/or situation.  Kaki was the silver medalist in the 800 last year, but the man he lost to, David Rudisha, seems unbeatable.  His switch to the 1500 for the Olympics would make him the first to employ the ARAAC strategy (Avoid Rudisha At All Costs).  Most don’t have the ability to pull off the ARAAC, but Kaki ran 3:31 last year and is already entered in a 1500 for the first Diamond League meet.

What would be the ripple effect of Kaki’s switch?  Aside from Rudisha’s path getting easier, it would make Kaki a medal threat immediately in the 1500.  Throw him, and his closing speed, in the mix with Asbel Kiprop and Silas Kiplagat and the chances of an American medal decrease significantly as well.

Chances of…

800: 40%

1500: 60%

Kenenisa Bekele: 5,000, 10,000, 5,000/10,000, neither

We will definitely have more information about the form of the defending gold medalist after he returns to racing this weekend in Ireland. Bekele barely raced last year and dropped out of the 10,000 at the World Championships snapping his undefeated streak in that event in the process.  His 2011 wasn’t all bad though as he returned in Brussels to run the fastest time in the world (26:43).  Was that performance a sign to returned dominance or a final curtain call?

The answer should be much more obvious this year because he will have to show some positive results early in the season in order to get selected to the Olympic team.  Bekele’s presence in either event would make it much more difficult for Mo Farah to win in front of his home crowd and it would also mean that a highly qualified Ethiopian will be on the sideline.  In the 2011 World Championships, Ethiopia went 1st and 3rd in the 10,000 and 3rd and 5th in the 5,000 (they would have been 3rd and 4th had Imane Merga not been disqualified).  The 5,000 and 10,000 are separated by several days making the double manageable.

Chances of:

5,000: 25%

10,000: 85%

5,000/10,000: 65%

Neither: 10%

Yohan Blake: 100, 200 or 100/200

Why would a reigning world champion in the 100 not race the glamour event at the Olympic Games?  The answer is he probably still will, but maybe he should reconsider.  Blake’s 100 meter title last year was a bit diminished by the absence of Tyson Gay, Asafa Powell and Usain Bolt, and was overshadowed by his own post-World Championship 19.26 200 meter time.

His best in the 100 meters is 9.82.  Great, but does not put him in the rarefied air that his 200 does.  If he skips the 100, he will be racing fresh against many that will be doubling back from the 100.  When I floated this idea to Ato Boldon (at about 8:02 on the podcast) he politely told me I was completely wrong, so I am probably way off base.  The prestige and potential earning power is far greater in the 100, but if Blake does not show the ability to go 9.7 or 9.6 early in the season, he should give the 200, and just the 200, a serious look.

100: 65%

200:  25%

100/200: 75%

The rest of The Morning Run

Aries Merritt and his hair are profiled by Yahoo.

The Boston Herald explains why the top Americans will be on the sidelines for this year’s Boston Marathon.  Hint, the Olympics.

The IAAF preview of Boston.

Jesse Squire discusses the connection between Steve Prefontaine and dual meets.

Ken Goe’s links of yore.

More of the non-story that is the status of Delano Williams‘ citizenship.

A great analysis of Matt Centrowitz’s bronze medal race in Daegu.

-Kevin

 

The Morning Run- April 10th

The Morning Run is a daily compilation of links, news and commentary.

Yesterday, Amby Burfoot of Runner’s World suggested changing the qualification procedure for the marathon in the Olympics.  Rather than base it on the three-per-nation limit, Burfoot wants a system where the best marathoners, regardless of nationality, all compete.  His full proposal is here, but the result for 2012 would be a field of seventeen Kenyans, two Ethiopians and one American.  By now, we are all well versed in the Kenyan and Ethiopian dominance of the event and how the Kenyan team this year will have to leave off several sub 2:06 performers.

Does the fact that the Olympics won’t have the deepest and best marathon in the world bother me?  Not entirely, because the Olympics aim to be about the participation of nations, rather than the greatest congregation of talent.  However, the real issue I have with Burfoot’s idea is that it doesn’t expand the field enough.

The tweak I would make to the race would allow Kenya (and other power countries) more entries than they hold currently, preserve the current state of the race and add a team component.  Here’s how it would work:

-Nation’s enter as five member teams.  This allows for two extra entries than the current system.  Does this mean there will still be deserving Kenyans and Ethiopians that will be left home? Certainly, but it is better to apologize to the 6th best than the 4th.

-In order to qualify as a team, at least 3 from your country must have met the “A” standard.  When looking at the numbers (keep in mind I did this just looking at 2011 times and for just the men’s field), only nine teams would qualify if all five members had to meet the “A” standard (Kenyan, Ethiopia, USA, Eritrea, Morocco, Japan, Russia, Poland, France), but if I opened it up to only three needing the standard, then nine more nations became eligible.  In these nations they often had several entrants that were just off the 2:15 “A” standard, so I didn’t feel that they overall competitiveness would be impacted by the presence of their 4th and 5th team members.

-Individuals from non-qualifying nations can still qualify by meeting the “A” standard.

-The team competition would be scored just like a cross country meet, except only the first four would count.  Medals would be distributed for the team competition as well as the individuals .

Obviously, there are many minor changes that could be made depending on the number of qualifiers and how many make the “A” standard on a given year.  If 18 teams made it, that would mean 90 runners would be a part of the team competition and it would still leave plenty of room for deserving individuals to represent their country.  The drama would extend from the front of the pack all the way to the back, and the US might even have a chance to snag a bronze every now and then.

The rest of The Morning Run…….

In The Sun’s article about Christine Ohuruogu, Allyson Felix says she is training for a double and is even considering racing the 100 instead of the 400, in addition to her favored 200.  She was .03 from a gold last summer in Daegu in the 400 and has never been a factor in the 100, so I’m a bit doubtful that she opts for the 100.

Ken Goe’s links.

Jesse Squire delivers his college awards from the past weekend.

Comedian Eddie Izzard runs with Haile Gebrselassie and discovers that Gebreselassie, and Ethiopia, are a bit confused by barefoot running.

Revealing Q and A with Usain Bolt where you discover that his training is in fact going well and that he wants to defend his Olympic titles in London.

More Bolt, he is scheduled to race a leg of the 4 x 100 this weekend at the UTech ClassicYohan Blake will run the 100 as well.

British marathoner Paula Radcliffe says she would be happy with a bronze at the Olympics.  That should take some pressure off.

Lolo Jones may not race in her home state at next weekend’s Drake Relays.

-Kevin