The 2010 Honda LA Marathon: A Few Words of Praise, by Larry Eder, News by Alfons Juck



Congrats to Honda LA Marathon-22,229 starters up from 14, 128 last year! My belief is that Honda LA will be a 40,000 person race one day--LA has always been an ideal destination for an early spring marathon. Under the new leadership, with a brilliant new course, committed sponsors (Honda, K-SWISS, Coca-Cola) and runners who have been twittering away their love of the new course and the demeanor of the race, HONDA LA Marathon proves what our sport has been saying for many years; put on a memorable race, and the field will build by word of mouth! Congrats to Frank McCourt, Russ Pillar, Peter Abraham and their team and sponsors! Nice job!


MADRID (ESP): Legendary Haile Gebrselassie is set for his next race. He will run the 10 km on the road in Madrid on April 25. It will be first edition of the 10k during the Madrid Marathon. Gebrselassie saw the 2007 and 2008 marathon races here and is having second fastest ever 10k on the road 27:02 from 2002 in Doha (at that time this was the world record).


NAIROBI (KEN): Kenyan team headed on Tuesday to Bydgoszcz. The rivalry with Ethiopia will continue on Sunday in Poland. The team is under immense pressure to win more of the four individual titles on offer, writes The Nation. Two of the top athletes expected to make amends for missing the gold medal last year are World 10,000m champion Linet Masai and Mercy Cherono, the World Junior 3,000m champion. After a rigorous training program at the St. Marks Teachers Training College in Kigari, Kenya is ready to take on the world even in the relatively cold European conditions. „I look forward to a good race. It has been good in the training camp and now we must show our ability to the world,“ said Masai. „I welcome her back. We have meet twice this season each of us won one race. But that will be of no use when we clash in Bydgoszcz. I will concentrate on doing my part,“ Masai said about her Ethiopian rival Tirunesh Dibaba.

MOSCOW (RUS): Russia is sending only girls junior team to World CC. Gulshat Falzutdinova who won silver at European CC event last december in Dublin is the headliner. Yevdokiya Bukina, Anna Sysoyeva, Veronika Mikhaylova, Viktoriya Ivanov and Diana Aleksandrova will run. DOHA (QAT): Steeple world record holder Saif Saeed Shaheen will be the headliner of Qatari team for World CC Championships. He never won an individual medal at this event, his best position was 4th in 2005 in the short course race.


LOS ANGELES (USA): At Sunday´s Honda LA Marathon in total 22 299 finishers were registered, a big increase from 14,128. Organizers reported selling over 25,000 entries. Writes RRW.

KINGSTON (JAM): Jamaican athletics is currently having young athletes in spotlight. Jamaica Amateur Athletic Association has released a strong 70-member team for the Carifta Games in Cayman Islands, April 3-5 2010. Future stars will be part of the team. For example also Usain Bolt was winner of these games in 2002-4. And top home fixture, the Jamaica‘s High School Track & Field championships are starting on Wednesday and will continue until Saturday.

VAXJO (SWE): Special indoor discus competition will be held this Saturday in Sweden. To follow up on last year‘s success when Gerd Kanter broke the World Indoor best here with a throw of 69.51 the event will be again held in the large Tipshallen. This year Kanter is looking to throw 70 meters writes his coach and organizer of the event Vesteinn Hafsteinsson. On the program also shot put for men and women as well as javelin for women.

UTRECHT (NED): The organizers of World Record Festival one of the best last years 10 000 m races will pass to organize it this or next year. Utrecht saw in 2009 sub 30 by Meselech Melkamu in women´s race and Ali Abdosh also of Ethiopia achieved 27:09.40 in men category. The organizers are planning to come back in 2012 or 2013.

ATHENS (GRE): Currently best Greek women triple jumper Athanasia Perra changed her coach again. After six months of work with Thanasis Siountris (former trainer of Pigi Devetzi) she is back with Sofia Bakatsaki (also former coach of both Devetzi and Perra during the 2004 Olympics period). Perra has with Bakatsaki her best results, her life-time best 14.62 in 2009 and indoors 14.27 in 2004.

KOSICE (SVK): The organizers of oldest marathon in Europe, the International Peace Marathon in Kosice, Slovakia announced interesting changes. They are changing the time barrier to end the race to 6 hours and will also because of that change the usual start time from 10 am to 9 am. The 87th edition will be held on October 3 this year. This years edition will celebrate also 30th year of having women competing.

SYDNEY (AUS): Athletics Australia has announced a thirty-eight strong team for the World junior championships in Moncton, Canada in July. The team includes seven members of last year‘s world youth championships and will be headed by world youth silver high jump medalist Amy Pejkovic. Kim Mulhall will line up for her third national team in the discus throw along with Taryn Gollshewsky. Commonwealth youth Games champion Sam Baines will highlight the 110 hurdles as well as Mitchell Tysoe. All four walkers selected for the team, Dane Bird-Smith, Rhydian Cowley, Regan Lamble and Paige Hooper will prepare for the championships at the IAAF World Race Walking Cup in Chihuahua, Mexico in May. Australia will send out teams for the girls‘ and boys‘ 4x100m and 4x400m as well. In July the team, consisting of 21 boys and 17 girls, will take part in a two-day warm-up meet with teams from Canada and New Zealand before traveling to Moncton.

LJUBLJANA (SLO): Just two days after winning the javelin throw at the 10th European Cup Winter Throwing in Arles Slovenian Martina Ratej has announced her ambitions to collect a medal at this year‘s European championships in Barcelona. Ratej, who threw a big personal best and new Slovenian national record, was delighted with her superb series in Arles which puts her second on this year‘s world ranking lists. She will now put her focus on Barcelona as she could be only the third Slovenian athlete to take a European gold medal writes

LONDON (GBR): Paul Deighton, chief executive of London 2012, said that the registration scheme set up as the first step for would-be spectators at the Olympics and Paralympics had had 40,000 hits in the first four hours. The site invites members of the public to indicate which sports they are interested in ahead of an announced sales date of spring 2011, when 75 per cent of tickets will go on sale to the public via a ballot. Pricing details will be announced in autumn. writes.

AUCKLAND (NZL): New Zealand‘s Olympic 1500m silver medalist Nick Willis has pulled out of this week‘s national championships with a leg injury. Willis, who just last week lost an 800m race on home soil to Australian Jeff Riseley, will return to his home town of Ann Arbor in the United States for treatment. „He‘s gone back to his own medical people over there. The way he‘s been talking it sounds as if it can be sorted reasonably quickly,“ Willis father said to The precise nature of the injury is unknown but would not be a reoccurrence of the hip injury that sidelined Willis last year.

KOLN (GER): German sports TV station DSF will change its name from April 11 to SPORT1. Part of new image will be return to athletics. SPORT1 will show all IAAF Diamond League meetings, most of the live, some on delayed base. Informs Leichtathletik Magazine.

LONDON (GBR): British European junior 10 000m silver medalist Simon Lawson has decided to quit track and field because of injury and disillusionment with the sport. The junior, who is still to be 20 years old, is the UK junior half marathon record-holder but suffered stress fractures in both ankles since November. Lawson added he felt done wrong when not being selected for both the 5000m and 10 000m at last year‘s European junior championships and the refusal of Welsh athletics to pay his medical bills of Ł 2000 as well as their rejection to provide Lottery funding. Lawson is a former Welsh under-18 international footballer and will return to playing football confirms Athletics Weekly.


MEDELLIN (COL, Mar 22): During third day of South American U23 Championships (part of 9th South American Games) fast 4x100 m relays. Colombian men achieved 39.85 and Brazilian women 44.47.

HERDORF (GER, Mar 21): In her preparation for Berlin Half-Marathon this weekend Sabrina Mockenhaupt was competing last weekend at 10 km in Herdorf. In strong head-wind she clocked 33:29 to win.

SPANISH TOWN (JAM, Mar 20): Berlin 200 m world fifth placer Anniesha McLaughlin posted at Intercollegiate Championships 23.16 (-2.0). It is so far the fastest 200 m of the outdoor 2010 season.

QINGZHU (CHN, Mar 20-21): National Games silver medalist Dong Guojian won both senior male races at Chinese CC Championships. At 6 km with 17:58 and at 12 km with 37:43. Olympic finalist Xue Fei was the best in the women 4 km (13:48). Unheralded Jiang Xiaoli won the 8 km in 29:03 (she was also fourth in the 4 km race).

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