Dibaba and Sihane Married! by Alfons Juck, Note by Larry Eder


Lots of news this weekend. Tirunesh Dibaba and Sileshi Sihane were married in Adis Abadda on Sunday. Paula Radcliffe, a half a world away, ran 51:11 at the BUPA Great North Run for ten miles. In Frankfurt, Robert Kiprono Cheruiyot ran 2:07.21 in his first marathon. What does this mean?

For Paula Radcliffe, her agony is being rewarded, by her training focus, with a British record for ten miles. Robert Kiprono Cheruiyot was quite lucky, but his training went well and he is now one of the best marathoners in the world, and Frankfurt has a new course record.

For Tirunesh Dibaba and Sileshi Sihane, although they shared their wonderful, and personal moment with many others, my hope is that, for one moment in their ceremony, they found a moment of clarity, a moment of remembrance, a look that they shared. Those are the moments of life, whether they are on a challenging ten mile course, or in an ancient church, that should be treasured... best wishes for Tirunesh Dibaba and Sileshi Sihane..

New plan for one-day meetings

LONDON (GBR): The success of the Beijing Olympics has encouraged officials at the International Association of Athletics Federations to push ahead with plans to expand the Golden League, the sport's flag-ship series, starting in 2010 in the build-up to London 2012, insidethegames can reveal. A 12-month feasibility study by the world governing body to restructure the sport's one-day meetings, including the Golden League, has gained fresh momentum after Beijing where Usain Bolt's world records in the 100 and 200 metres thrilled the world and turned him into a global superstar. A spokesman for the IAAF told insidethegames: "We have been in discussion with a wide range of stakeholders, the majority of whom are very supportive and believe that the direction that the restructuring is taking is not only necessary but will provide a tremendously exciting platform for the sport. In short, we need to have the best athletes in the world competing more often, the most exciting presentation possible, more meetings around the world, and as much coverage as possible on free-to-air television as this circuit will exist primarily as a way to promote and market our sport worldwide." The current Golden League consists of six meetings in Europe where any athlete who remains undefeated throughout the series shares a jackpot of 1 million USD. The future sees 12 Golden League meetings from them 8 in Europe and 4 overseas (thinking mainly on Middle East, Japan, China and USA). Second level a so-called Challenge League will have another 12 meetings from around the world. In the current situation there are except of GL (all in Europe) also six Super Grand Prix Meetings (from them 4 in Europe) and 12 Grand Prix Meetings, from them 7 in Europe.

The plan is to increase the prize money involved and sign contracts with top athletes to compete in the first level in at least 6-9 meetings. For some observers the weak point is the idea to stage the same 10 events at each of the 12 GL Meetings. The IAAF spokesman said: "All the current organisers of World Athletics Tour meetings have been contacted and a large number of potential organisers and cities have already expressed an interest in having their meetings considered for the proposed new structure. This includes many existing Golden League and Super Grand Prix organisers but also new venues as well." The financing of the new project is planned by independent investors who will be able to wait for some time until the return will come. Mindspring Agency is working on the plan and will present its current status at next IAAF Council Meeting in November in Monte Carlo. If no decision would be made a possibility exists to postpone the start of the new project for 2011.

The Olympic Stadium currently being built in London is believed to figure in the IAAF's plans to stage a major event when it is finished in 2011. Mainly IAAF World Athletics Final could be a issue.

Dibaba and Sihine married

ADDIS ABABA (ETH): Waving to the crowd that waited for them on the sides of the streets, world class runners Tirunesh Dibaba and Sileshi Sihine moved the magnificent Church of Medhanialem for their wedding on Sunday. There awaited their fans and church goers who happen to be there at the historic moment. Showing respect to the church all the entourage was taking their shoes off. Both Tirunesh and Sileshi showed their respect to bowing down and kissing the cross from the priests hand Blessing the holly matrimony, the priest also gave Tirunesh Diababa and Sileshi Sihine both a Holly Bible. Also granted a Holly Bible on the blessed day were the bridesmaid and Tirunesh´s sister Ejigayehu Dibaba, Haile Gebreselassie, and Tirunesh´s close contender Meseret Defar. Meseret came to congratulate Tirunesh and the sight of the two of them together was simply breath taking. After the holly blessing from the church the two went of their city stroll followed by a lunch at the Hilton Hotel Addis Ababa. Informs Elshadai Negash at the website of Tirunesh Dibaba.

Course record in Frankfurt

FRANKFURT (GER, Oct 26): 20-years old Kenyan Robert Kiprono Cheruiyot smashed the course record in the Dresdener Kleinwort Frankfurt Marathon clocking 2:07:21. two hours, seven minutes, 21 seconds. And on his debut, no less. Because despite the famous name that he shares with the four-time winner of the Boston Marathon, whose middle name is Kipkoech, this Robert K Cheruiyot was completely unknown, writes Pat Butcher. Not only was this his debut marathon, it was his first trip outside Kenya. And he was such a late entry to this 27th edition of Germany's oldest city marathon, that he had to buy his own air ticket, with the elite race coordinator Christoph Kopp promising to reimburse him, if he broke 2:14. Well, not only does he get his airfare back, he collects 50,000 euros for taking over half a minute off the course record of 2:07:58. Cheruiyot eased away just after 35 of the 42.195 kilometres, and had almost a minute lead when he crossed the line to the accompaniment of fireworks and music in the spectacular indoor setting of the Frankfurt Festhalle. Wilson Kigen was second in 2:08:16 and Stephen Kiogora, trying to catch him had a nasty fall on the final turn into the Festhalle, and had to settle for third in 2:08:24. To add to the name confusion, both Cheruiyots come from the town of Kaptagat, near Eldoret in the western highlands of Kenya. "But we are not related," said the winner immediately after a victory, which surprised even himself. "When the field began to break up, I thought that I might be third, but I'm very happy to win". According to his manager, Jos Hermens, Cheruiyot was persuaded to make a late bid to enter the race on the advice of a training partner, William Kiplagat, who said he was more than ready to go the distance. Kiplagat himself finished tenth (2:10:53). The race served to underline the domination of Kenyans in worldwide marathons. There were 17 in the top 20 here, seven from them went sub 2:10. Best runner representing European country was a Ethiopian living in Norway Urige Buta who was 15th in 2:13:56.

The women's race was a triumph for German Sabrina Mockenhaupt, who clocked a personal best 2:26:22, taking over three minutes off her debut best in Hamburg last year. She went straight into the lead, and was never headed. Although she had 2004 Frankfurt winner, Olesya Nurgalieva of Russia just behind her for half the race, the expected German duel never materialised, since last year's winner, Melanie Kraus could not match the pace. Nurgalieva was second in 2:27:37, also a personal best by just under two minutes; and Kraus was third in 2:28:20. Former Kenyan steepler Irene Limika debuted as 4th into great 2:28:31 and last sub 2:30 was Norway´s Olympian Kirsten Melkevik Otterbu in 2:29:40 (just missed her last year PB from here 2:29:12).

Radcliffe win

PORTSMOUTH (GBR, Oct 26): Britain's Paula Radcliffe put to rest any doubt about her fitness Sunday morning in Portsmouth, England, flying through the 10 miles at the BUPA Great North Run in 51:11 what is new British record, according to a report published by Britain's Press Association and Race Results Weekly. Her time was only 11 seconds shy of Sonia O'Sullivan's 2002 course record, and it was the fifth-fastest statistically valid time ever recorded for a ten mile distance, according to the independent Association of Road Racing Statisticians. The fastest in the list is a 50:49.6 by Lornah Kiplagat of Netherlands from Zaandam on Sep 17, 2006. Her next competition will be the ING New York City Marathon next Sunday. Portugal's Jessica Augusto finished a distant second in 53:15 followed by Kenyans Magdalena Makunzi (53:18) and Martha Komu (54:29). Male winner Kenyan Bernard Kipyego achieved 46:43 ahead of Martin Fagan of Ireland (46:58) and Kenyan marathon world champion 2007 Luke Kibet (47:01). Former Spanish European champion Jose Manuel "Chema" Martinez was fourth (47:16).

50k title for Si Tianfeng

XINTAI (CHN, Oct 25): In the last event in autumn Chinese Walking Championships the 17th from Olympic Race Si Tianfeng clearly dominated. He walked the 50 km in solid 3:46:55. Second place for another Olympian Zhao Chengliang (3:50:25) who was 21st in Beijing. Third participant at Olympics Li Jianbo did not finish his race. Bronze wedal for Army walker Gou Xiaoxin who improved his personal best to 3:58:24 by one second from his debut at the distance in March.

Marathons overview

ISTANBUL (TUR): Ethiopian Kasime Adilo Roba won the jubilee 30th Eurasia Istanbul Marathon with 2:11:16. Also in women category no course record as the winner Russian Nayila Yulamanova achieved 2:30:17.

NAIROBI (KEN): Home wins at Standard Chartered Marathon in Kenya. Kikwe Tuiyange clocked 2:10:30 and Emma Muthoni 2:33:42.

VENICE (ITA): Close-finish by Kenyans at Venice Marathon as Joseph Lomala achieved 2:11:06 and Jacob Chesire 2:11:07. Hungarian Aniko Kalovics was able to be the best woman in 2:31:24 beating Kenyan Anne Kosgei (2:32:21).

PORTO (POR): Kenyan Samuel Muti won the 4th Porto Marathon registering 2:11:08. Ethiopian female win for Tirfa Beyene in 2:35:31.

LJUBLJANA (SLO): Here at 13th Ljubljana marathon a Ethiopian male win for Amare Mulu with 2:14:41. Ukrainian Tetyana Mezentseva was the best woman and debuted with 2:37:13.

LAUSANNE (SUI): Eritrean Berhe Zeremariam won the Lausanne Marathon with a final time 2:16:05. Kenyan Pauline Atodonyang was the best female runner after 2:46:23.

Janicki and Bak

BUDAPEST (HUN, Oct 23): Poland´s Jaroslaw Janicki and German Maria Bak repeated their wins at 19th Samsung Supermarathon (321 km) Vienna-Bratislava-Budapest through three countries. For Janicki it was a fourth overall win in a row with a final time 23:16:48. Second and third Hungarians Adam Zahoran (24:02:05) and Ferenc Biri (24:33:39). German ultra-runner Bak achieved more clearly her seventh overall win here as she dominated in all five stages and had a final time 27:29:02. Last stage a half-marathon from Budakeszi to Budapest was won by Russian Anatoliy Kruglikov (1:21:57) ahead of Janicki (1:23:55) and Bak who had 1:38:19. In overall ranking second and third for Russians Galina Yeryomina (28:41:01) and Lyudmila Kalinina (29:06:33).

Belarus CC titles

GRODNO (BLR, Oct 25): Belarus National Cross-Country Champions were at 8 km World CC participant Ihar Tsiatserukou (30) in 24:07 and Gulnara Vigovkaya who was 5th at this years Berlin Marathon after 29:06.


BRUSSELS (BEL): In the October deadline the FISU office registered six bidding cities to stage the 2015 Universiade. They are Rio de Janeiro, Edmonton, Taipei City, Gwangju in Korea, Poznan in Poland and a Spanish city (Vigo or Grenada). Hamburg a previous intentional candidate withdrew. In 2009 the Universiade will be held in Beograd, Serbia, in 2011 in Shenzhen, China and in 2013 in Kazan, Russia.

NASSAU (BAH): After nearly a year of infighting the executive members of The Bahamas Association of Athletic Associations finally got their way and closed the curtains on their president Mike Sands after taking a vote of no confidence in him during their regular monthly meeting. The final count was 22-19 against Sands who will be replaced by first vice president Hurt Hollingsworth until the next election in 2009. Information by Bahamian media.

PARIS (FRA): Romanian born coach Carmen Hodos and her husband Silviu were sentenced respectively to one year's imprisonment (9 months of which were suspended) and 9 month suspended for possession of illegal doping substances and doping assistance, 8 years after the opening of the case. 56 year old Carmen Hodos won't go back to prison as the sentence covers the time already spent in preventive detention. The pair was also sentenced to pay a token euro damages and pay back the 5,000 euros legal bills of the French federation, the plaintiff in the case. Me Paul Mauriac, the lawyer of the French federation, claimed to be "very satisfied" but regretted that the investigation wasn't pushed far enough while there obviously appeared to be a Romanian doping ring with connections in Maghreb", AFP informs.

MADRID (ESP): Spanish media are informing that the 35-years old triple jumper Carlota Castrejana retired. She competed in the 1992 Olympics as a member of the Spanish basketball team, which finished fifth, when she was 19. After switching to athletics in 1994, she set Spanish high jump records of 1.89m indoors (1995) and outdoors (1996) before turning to the horizontal jumps in 1998. In 2007 she won the European indoor title. Her national records are 14.60 in 2005 outdoors and 14.64 while winning the European indoor gold in Birmingham. This year she jumped 14.36, but was a no qualifier in Beijing at Olympic Games.

Used with permission of Alfons Juck, publisher of EME News.

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Athletics Quarterly (www.coachingathleticsq.com), and USATF Fast Forward (www.usatf.org). All of the above magazine websites can be found at RunningNetwork.com (www.runningnetwork.com).

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