Mark Rowland is New Coach of Oregon Track Club, by Alfons Juck, Notes by Larry Eder


Mark Rowland, the 1988 Seoul Olympic bronze medalist at the steeplechase, is now the new coach for the Oregon Track Club. The press release and videos for the press conference can be found at Special thanks to the folks at for the heads up!

Rowland is replacing Frank Gagliano, former Georgetown coach, known affectionately as Gags by his former athletes and those, like myself, who worship him from the stands. Gags has been an institution in American middle distance running for nearly thirty years. At the young age of 71, he is looking for some time with family and friends. That coaching life can wear won out. Seriously, on behalf of the former athletes I know, and, I would like to thank Frank Gagliano by showing, day in and day out, that coaches do more that show one how to run a faster last three hundred meters, they teach them the key lessons to leading a rich and challenging life. Thanks for your hard work and your support of our sport!

Welcome to Mark Rowland and we look forward to seeing the crowd from the OTC this summer in Eugene!

Special bonus: From Runner's Space, here are the links for their Foot Locker and USATF Club XC coverage, as they called it, " Fun in the Sun and the Snow!"

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EME NEWS (DEC 16, 2008)


LONDON (GBR): Readers of Athletics International (results and news bulletin published by Mel Watman and Peter Matthews) voted Usain Bolt (almost unanimously) and Turinesh Dibaba (by a very narrow margin over Pamela Jelimo and Yelena Isinbayeva) as World Athletes of the Year. Scoring on the basis of six points for a first place vote, four for second, three for third, two for fourth and one for fifth, these were the top ten. Men: 1, Usain Bolt 490 points (80 first place votes); 2, Kenenisa Bekele 309; 3, Dayron Robles 200; 4, Haile Gebrselassie 118; 5, Bryan Clay 44; 6, Andreas Thorkildsen 34; 7, Samuel Wanjiru 25; 8, Irving Saladino 20; 9, LaShawn Merritt 19; 10, Asafa Powell 18.

Women: 1, Tirunesh Dibaba 349 (27 first place votes); 2, Pamela Jelimo 342 (23); 3, Yelena Isinbayeva 337 (24); 4, Barbora Spotáková 98; 5, Gulnara Galkina 48; 6, Blanka Vlasic 38; 7, Veronica Campbell-Brown 29; 8, Melaine Walker 20; 9, Valerie Vili 14; 10t Shelly-Ann Fraser & Tia Hellebaut 13.


LAUSANNE (SUI): Britain's Paula Radcliffe and Portugal's Rui Pedro Silva have been voted the European Athletes of the Month for November. Radcliffe, the world record holder for the marathon at 2:15:25 made up for some of the disappointment suffered by competing in the Beijing Olympic Marathon with injury to win her 3rd New York Marathon in 2:23:56. Rui Pedro Silva won the award on the back of his achievement in being the top European finisher at the IAAF Cross Country Permit Meeting in Oeiras, Portugal in the middle of the month. The 27-year-old, who was an Olympic 10,000m finalist in Beijing won the European Clubs Half Marathon a few weeks earlier and look set to be on the verge of a top class career over the longer distances. The runners up in the women's poll were Susan Kuijken of the Netherlands and Ines Monteiro of Portugal while Italy's Giorgio Calcaterra and Ireland's Andrew Ledwith took similar positions on the men's side.


NORDHAUSEN (GER): The German special shot put indoor meet in Nordhausen (January 23) announced a high class duel for next edition. World Indoor Champion Christian Cantwell will meet with World Champion Reese Hoffa. Both US stars will face home elite headed by Peter Sack and Ralf Bartels. Last year Cantwell before packed hall (1600 spectators) improved the meet record to 21.35 m.


High Jump Olympic winner Tia Hellebaut is sports-woman of the year in Belgium. Romanian marathon Olympic gold medalist Constantina Dita is the winner of the vote for the best sports personality of the year 2008 in Balkan countries in poll together with men.


MARTINA: Netherland Antilles sprinter star Churandy Martina will not compete indoors and concentrate on his school and of course train hard for outdoors. In the meantime he should also learn the verdict of CAS concerning his Olympic disqualification. He competed undercover so far only in 2006 season with 6.72 and 21.23 (oversized) results at 60 m and 200 m.

CLEMENT: World champion and Olympic silver holder at 400 m Hurdles Kerron Clement plans some indoor races, but it is not decided yet which meetings. He is indoor world record holder with 44.57 in 2005 and had his last indoor races in 2006.

K. STEWART: Jamaican Olympic medalist (silver and bronze in 100 m and 200 m) Kerron Stewart will not run any indoor meets. She has high quality PB´s from NCAA times 7.14 and 22.46 in 2007.

D. THOMAS: 2007 World Champion Donald Thomas of Bahamas is practising currently, but it is not known whether he will be ready for indoor high jump competitions.

A. HOWE: Italian European Champion in Long Jump Andrew Howe will be one of the stars of IAAF Indoor Permit Russian Winter in Moscow on Feb 1. His main aim next winter is the European Championships on home soil in Torino.

BLASCHEK: Leading German hurdler Thomas Blaschek injured himself during training camp in Kienbaum at his calf muscle. He still hopes to be ready for his planned first indoor meet in Leipzig on Feb 1.

LEL: Kenyan marathon runner Martin Lel aims for his fourth London victory and also to break the current Gebrselassie world record.

CHERUIYOT: Robert Kipkoech Cheruiyot plans not only for Boston 2009 to defend his title, but also World Championships in Berlin. Cheruiyot has recently gone through a religious conversion and converted to Islam. He is now Ahmed Omar Kipkoech Cheruiyot.


BOSTON (USA): On the heels of her successful marathon debut in New York last month where she became the first American woman to make the podium there since 1994, Kara Goucher has committed to next April's (20) Boston Marathon, John Hancock Financial announced today. Informs Race Results Weekly. Goucher will try to break the 24 year USA drought for victory at America's oldest, continuously contested marathon, founded in 1897. The last American woman to win the Boston Marathon was Lisa Larsen-Weidenbach in 1985, clocking 2:34:06. Goucher, the reigning IAAF World Championships bronze medalist at 10,000m, finished third at the ING New York City Marathon on November 2 in 2:25:53. John Hancock Financial is in its 24th year as the principal sponsor of the Boston Marathon, financing the elite fields. In recruiting both Goucher and Ryan Hall, the fastest American-born marathoner ever with a 2:06:17 personal best, Hancock seems to be strengthening their commitment to American athletes.

LONDON (GBR): Former European Cross Country gold medallist Hayley Yelling has announced her retirement after helping the Norwich Union GB team to silver medals at Sunday's championships in Brussels. Yelling winner of her title in Heringsdorf, Germany four years ago, was making her 12th appearance at the EuroCross and it was the tenth occasion she has helped the team mount the medal podium. Informs David Martin. Yelling after the disappointment of narrowly missing the Olympic 10 000m qualifer at the last three Games, admits London in four years time will be a bridge to far.

"I missed Sydney by 1.27 seconds, Athens by 0.14 seconds and Beijing by about 4 seconds," she said. „I can't go on until 2012, I'll be too old by then." She will continue in the sport as a coach in her club (Windsor, Slough, Eton & Hounslow).

GLASGOW (GBR): scottishathletics new national event development programme will be rolled out in stages over the next three months, in time for the sport's new 2009-15 strategic plan start in April. The federation informs in a release. In November, the 24 athletes on Scotland's 2010 Commonwealth Games support programme were announced. Supporting that, a new 'National Development' concept is being put in place to drive coach and athlete standards ahead of the 2012 and 2014 Games. The first element to be unveiled is a Bank of Scotland Development Programme for high jump. Twelve Scottish athletes and nine coaches will be invited to attend sessions in January and March. These will be undertaken by the new Bank of Scotland technical lead for high jump Terry Lomax (UK Performance Coach for high jump), who coached Robbie Grabarz to a 227 performance and Stewarts Scottish National Championships title in 2008.

KINGSTON (JAM): News from Usain Bolt background as reported by Jamaican media. Bolt has ventured into the fashion industry with his own clothing line. The fastest man on earth officially launched the Usain Bolt apparel collection in conjunction with Sun Island Jamaica Limited on Saturday. Bolt's apparel collection will focus on three target markets which will be covered by the Souvenir Line (will appeal to all age groups), the Urban Line (with trendy prints targeting people aged 16 to 30 years), and the classy and conservative Signature Line of polo shirts bearing the „To the World" pose popularised by the sprinter in Beijing. He also received his shipment from Germany in the meantime. The BMW M3 Coupe which was purchased for his birthday by his sportswear sponsor, PUMA. „I'm feeling good, I'm all smiles as you can see, I really appreciate it and I thank PUMA," Bolt told journalists after collecting his keys from PUMA's Jamaican distributor Carl Chang at the head offices of Stewart Motors on Orchard Road in Kingston.

EUGENE (USA): As Oregon media are informing, former Olympic medalist Mark Rowland of Great Britain (bronze in steeple at Seoul 1988 Games) is the new head coach of the Nike Oregon Track Club Elite team. Rowland, 45, will take over for retiring Frank Gagliano, 71, who is moving back to the East Coast to be closer to family. Rowland was introduced at a news conference in Eugene on Monday by Vin Lananna, OTC Elite's president. Twenty-three club members competed at the Olympic trials in Eugene, and three qualified for the Olympics: Nick Symmonds, Christian Smith and Nicole Teter.

ALBA (ITA): Mondo, a global leader in the sports flooring market, reached that its 60 years anniversary in style in 2008 with more world records set on its tracks and more prestigious installations of its track and field surfaces. Now more than 230 world records have been set on Mondo tracks, and more than 1,100 Mondo tracks and more than 800 Mondoturf fields have been installed in athletic venues around the world. Among the highlights of its 60th year were the five world records set at the Beijing Olympics on Mondotrack, the company's newest and most advanced track surface.

LONDON (GBR): Pat Butcher´s end of the season blog at:

TOKYO (JPN): The dates for main events in Japan are set for 2009. Apart of the road circuit the track season will have first climax in end of April/begin of May period with Osaka Grand Prix on May 9. Before that the meets in Kobe (April 26), Hiroshima (April 29) and Shizuoka (May 3) will be staged. National Championships are planned for June 25-28 in Hiroshima. The post-season Super Meet will be on September 23 in Kawasaki. In the end of the year road scene the Yokohama women marathon is planned for November 15, Kobe women half marathon on November 22 and Chiba Ekiden on November 23. Traditional men Fukuoka Marathon will be staged on Dec 6. For early 2010 the plan is on Jan 31 the Osaka Ladies Marathon, on Feb 7 Beppu-Oita Marathon and on Feb 28 the new big Tokyo Marathon. In March on 7th Lake Biwa Marathon and on Mar 14 Nagoya Women Marathon. Ken Nakamura reports.


BAHIR DAR (ETH, Dec 14): As IAAF reports, All-Africa Games 10 000 m silver medallist Tadesse Tola and African junior 5000m bronze medallist Bezunesh Urgessa were winners at inaugural Bahir Dar Cross Country, 560kms north of the Ethiopian capital. The race saw around 150 athletes from clubs and regions around the country take part. Tola clocked 35:32.73 at 12 km nearly three seconds ahead of youngster Tilahun Regassa (35:36.33) with Hunegnaw Mesfin coming home in third 35:37.78. Urgessa achieved 26:57.14 at 8 km.

ROCHLITZ (GER, Dec 14): At special shot put event indoors the current world youth and junior champion David Storl improved the national indoor mark with 6 kg implement to 20.46 m. It should be noted that outdoors he achieved already 21.08 while winning the global title in summer in Bydgoszcz.

Special thanks to Alfons Juck, EME News, and the folks at

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