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Posts Tagged ‘Mo Farah’

Diamond League Finishes in Style in Brussels

September 5th, 2014

Brenda Martinez Runs Fast

World Champs medalist Brenda Martinez won today but is she even the best American 800m woman? (photo: gobrendamartinez.com)

With the Diamond League season coming to a close today, the track season is effectively over. Sure, there is the Continental Cup serving as the true end to the season, but after the exhausting season and most of the storylines already written: the Continental Cup serves more to figure out who’s minds and bodies went on vacation early than figuring out who the best athletes are. So, as far as this blog is concerned, the season’s over.

Running Warehouse caught on to some of track and field’s great narratives early and today’s meet served as a fitting end to some of them. Nothing feels better than a good “I told you so,” and that is exactly what I’m going to do with this blog.

Most recently we told you that the American middle distance running crew are the best in the world and Brenda Martinez’s 800m win today emphatically confirmed that. She ran a blazing 1:58.84 and showed the world that she is still a force to be reckoned with after a disappointing USA Championships and a midseason break to regroup. This means that no less than 3 Americans look like they could be next year’s women’s 800m World Champion and several more Americans aren’t far behind. With our previously mentioned success in the 1500, it is an exciting time for our middle distance fans out there.

Jager Runs over Barriers

Evan Jager broke his own American steeplechase record today.

Back in July, we told you that there is a pair of great steeplechasers representing the United States with fast times and beautiful hair. Admittedly, I wrote the blog about Emma and Evan in anticipation of Evan breaking the American steeplechase record in Monaco and had to make some alterations after he missed the mark. Well, earlier today he did break his American record with a third place finish in the event. This year of fearlessly chasing the best in the world over the barriers is hopefully a perfect juncture to next year’s World Championships and the 2016 Olympics, as he is still so new to the event.

Christian runs and jumps

Christian Taylor is Superman.

Our final story started way back at the beginning of the season but a picture in one of our “week in running” blogs didn’t do Christian Taylor justice. Christian is one of the greatest athletes on the planet, who proves time and time again, that he can do almost anything he wants with his legs. The triple jump gold medalist defended his hop, skip, and jump territory last week by winning the Diamond League title and went after the long jump title today. Beginning the season with a spot on the world’s best 4 X 400 meter team at the World Relays and ending the season with Diamond League titles at both horizontal jumps would have been truly super-human. As it turns out, he is human and had to settle for 3rd in today’s long jump and the Diamond Chase. He is certainly still an amazing athlete to follow and it will be interesting to see which event he chooses to conquer next.

With the track season ending, our focus will turn to the major fall marathons and the races leading up to them. The Berlin Marathon is at the end of the month and world records are always at risk when that gun goes off. This weekend’s Great North Run will serve as a great appetizer for marathon fans as Mo Farah takes on Olympic bronze medalist Tariku Bekele and one of the fastest half marathon courses anywhere. There will be plenty of great races to come while we wait for tracks to heat up again next year.

Scott Running Sport , , , , , ,

Europe and Africa Crown Champions in 2014

August 14th, 2014

The second largest and second smallest continents on the planet are hosting their respective championships this week and there are a lot of great races yet to be run. The African Championships started on Sunday in Marrakech, Morocco and the European Championships took off yesterday.

Already storylines are developing as Nijel Amos of Botswana won yet another championship, cementing himself as the king of the 800m for the year, while Nigeria’s Blessing Okagbare continues to add to her own medal collection in the sprints. Marrakech has not treated all favorites equally as Genzebe Dibaba, who was unstoppable earlier this year during the indoor season, lost to fellow Ethiopian Almaz Ayana.

Isaac Makwala Runs a lap

Isaac Makwala ran the fastest lap around a track ever on African soil. (image: IAAF)

While Nijel Amos was able to dominate both the Commonwealth games and the African Championships, his countryman, Isaac Makwala had to recover from a disappointing Commonwealth appearance to win his title at the African Championships. The African record holder in the 400m came to Morrocco and won each of his heats before dominating the final and setting a record for fastest 400m on the African continent.

Pavey running

Jo Pavey leading the pack (Image: IAAF)

While Zurich has only seen action for two days, already there has been historic performances on the track beginning with Jo Pavey’s age defying win at 10,000 meters. The 40-year-old left her younger competitors behind and added a European gold medal to her Commonwealth silver medal less than a year from when she had a child. She is a truly great runner who happened to have to run in the shadow of World Marathon Record Holder and fellow Brit Paula Radcliff, so to see her continue to excel is a treat so many years later.

Mo Farah completed the British sweep of European 10,000m titles today in his first major track race of the season. After dominating the 5,000m and 10,000m over the past few years, he was the clear favorite but he has had a series of difficulties in preparing for the track season from before his collapse at the New York City Half Marathon back in March up to recently visiting the hospital for stomach issues. Given the circumstances, the win is impressive. It will be interesting to see how he responds to the tougher competition of late season track meets if he chooses to compete on the track in the coming months.

While those of us on this side of the Pacific Ocean are eagerly awaiting the chance for American track stars to get back to what they do best, we can all still follow their competitors in Morocco and Switzerland.

Scott Running News , , , ,

Shoe Review: Nike Zoom Pegasus 31

July 18th, 2014

The Pegasus series has become a favorite of many runners over the years and the legacy continues with the recent release of the Zoom Pegasus 31. (Check out RW’s first look at the Pegasus 31 from May here.) The Pegasus is traditionally known to be a neutral daily trainer suitable for long distances, but in an effort to make the shoe better, the 31st edition gets revamped with a faster road feel.  To help fine-tune this “fast feel,” the Nike development team received technical suggestions from the 5000m and 10000m Olympic Gold Medalist Mo Farah resulting in a firmer ride built for performance.

Overview:

Nike lowered the heel drop to 10mm, 2mm lower than its predecessor, to engineer the quicker design.  The lowered drop, while not massive, can be a factor in promoting more of a mid-to-forefoot strike while running.  Another significant update is seen in the addition of a slightly elevated forefoot, resulting in a smoother and quicker transition of the foot during forward propulsion. Through research, analysis, and feedback from wear testers, who logged over 16000 miles, the new quick and responsive Zoom Pegasus 31 was born.

Read more…

Connor Running Shoes , , ,