Lemaitre & Vicaut competing in Areva Paris DL, by Alfons Juck, note by Larry Eder

Jimmy Vicaut, photo by PhotoRun.net

LeMaitre_ChristopheQ-World11.JPGChristophe LeMaitre, photo by PhotoRun.net

France's top sprinters will be running at their largest track meet, the Areva Paris DL, to be held July 6 in the Stade De France in St. Denis. This will be the last time that French athletes can make the Olympic standard, so there should be some real fireworks!



PARIS (FRA): The organizers of the meeting Areva 2012, the seventh stage of the Samsung Diamond League on July 6 in Stade de France in Paris presented the poster for the event. The event will be also the final opportunity for the French athletes to achieve the standards for Olympic Games. In spite of the very likely absence of Usain Bolt, the sprint at 100 m should still be the highlight with world champion Yohan Blake expressing his desire to compete with home stars Christophe Lemaitre and young Jimmy Vicaut. „For the past two years I've been coming to this meeting to pull off a great performance in front of a home crowd. I still have really sound memories of the very special ambiance and atmosphere from my first two experiences at the Stade de France. I'll be approaching this year's competition with the same mindset," said Lemaitre. The European junior champion Vicaut added: „Above all I'm very happy to have finally been invited to the Meeting. I'd be hoping for a place for the past two years, but I wasn't good enough. I'm expecting great things, lined up against Christophe and the others. I've never run in the Stade de France before so I'm keen to discover what it's like".



VIENNA (AUT): The course record will be the goal in the men's race of the Vienna City Marathon on 15th April. Organisers of Austria's biggest sporting event, who had recently signed superstars Haile Gebrselassie and Paula Radcliffe for a unique chase race in the half marathon, have now announced a first set of names for their main event, the Vienna City Marathon. Both the defending champions, John Kiprotich and Fate Tola, will be returning to the Austrian capital as will four more former champions of the race. The fastest in the field so far is Gilbert Kirwa. Running his debut at the distance the Kenyan took the Vienna City Marathon in 2009 with 2:08:21. He then went on to improve to an impressive 2:06:14, when he won the Frankfurt Marathon in the same year. Originally Gilbert Kirwa had been signed by the Tokyo Marathon to run against Haile Gebrselassie in February. But the Kenyan was not fully fit in time for the race in Japan and then opted for Vienna. Luke Kibet is another major name in marathon running, who had originally been successful in Vienna and then went on to win big in the same year. It was in 2007 when the Kenyan took the race in Austria, clocking 2:10:07 in warm weather conditions and later won the World Championships in Osaka. Another Kenyan, Henry Sugut, is the fourth runner in the men's race, who has won the Vienna City Marathon in the past. He triumphed in 2010 with 2:08:40. In the women's race the defending champion will most probably return as the big favourite. Organizers are informing in a release.



HAMBURG (GER): The organisers of the Haspa Marathon Hamburg, whose 27th running take place on April 29, are looking forward to an upgrade of their race, in keeping with the status of the city of Hamburg. With 13 men under 2:10 (two of them under 2:06) enlisted for the race, the revamped organising committee are hoping, if not expecting two course records, in order to underline their case to be considered one of the world's best marathons. Course records belong to four-time winner, Spaniard Julio Rey, who ran 2.06.52 six years ago, and Irina Timofeyeva of Russia, who clocked 2.24.14 in 2008. Leading contenders to attack those marks are Dadi Yami of Ethiopia, who ran 2.05.41 in Dubai in January, and his colleague Shami Dawit who finished just one second behind him. There are three more sub-2.07 men, Kenyans Evans Cheruiyot (2.06.25) and Paul Biwott (2.06.54), and Ethiopian Chele Dechase (2.06.33), plus former world 10,000 meters champion, Charles Kamathi of Kenya, whose marathon best is 2.07.33. In women category Robe Guta of Ethiopia (first in Seoul, twice, and in Hamburg 2006) should be able to improve on her best of 2.24.35. In a statement from their launch press conference this morning, Wednesday, Jos Hermens, whose Global Sports company has been enlisted by organisers to upgrade the event, said, "After some difficult years Hamburg Marathon now is back to where it belongs. It will again challenge to belong among the top 10 best marathons worldwide, as it has done in the past." Informs Pat Butcher (www.globerunner.org).



LAUSANNE (SUI): European Athletics hosted Member Federations and city representatives from five countries at Bidding Seminars for the 2015 European Athletics Team Championships, European Athletics U23 Championships and European Athletics Junior Championships. Representatives from the Czech Republic, Estonia, France, Germany and Sweden attended the seminars that outlined the requirements for hosting three of the main European Athletics events in 2015. Sweden and Germany attended the seminar having declared an interest in hosting the 2015 European Athletics Junior Championships in the cities of Eskilstuna and Regensburg, respectively. The Estonian capital city of Tallinn is interested in hosting the 2015 European Athletics U23 Championships after successfully hosting the 2011 edition of the European Athletics Junior Championships. Regensburg has also expressed its interest in the under-23 championships. The next step for the potential hosts is to confirm their candidatures by 31 March 2012 and then submit bids by 30th September 2012. The decision on the host cities for the under-23 and junior championships will be made at the European Athletics Council meeting in May 2013. The cities of Cheboksary in Russia and Braunschweig in Germany, along with Ostrava in the Czech Republic, are already in contention to host the 2014 edition of the European Athletics Team Championships. In addition, Ostrava, Cheboksary and an as yet undeclared city from France are interested in the 2015 edition of the championships. The European Athletics Council decision on who will host the 2014 and 2015 European Athletics Team Championships is scheduled for the Council meeting taking place in Bucharest in November 2012. Informs EA.







PRAGUE (CZE): The Association of International Marathons and Distance Races (AIMS) announced the renowned speakers and members of the international running community Kathrine Switzer and her husband Roger Robinson as the keynote speakers with their presentation "Women in Running" at the 19th World Congress of AIMS, this year taking place in Prague between the 10-12 May 2012.


LONDON (GBR): British sprinter and fresh World Indoor bronze winner Dwain Chambers was invited out of the blue last week to train in the group with Asafa Powell, Nesta Carter and Michael Frater in Kingston. He is now already in Jamaica. „He needs to be shoulder to shoulder with the fastest guys regularly and it will get him where he wants to be for the summer in terms of performances. He is much fitter and healthier than he was 2 years ago with diet advice," informs his agent Siza Agha.


DUDINCE (SVK): Walking world is coming to Dudince, Slovakia this Saturday. And doubling at the games is one of the top questions. Best home walker Matej Toth already decided that his priority is 50 km and he plans only 20 km (or shorter) races before the games. Alex Schwazer also plans for only 50 km. On the other hand French record holder Yohann Diniz should be ready to do both, the 20 km and 50 km. Russians will be most probably splitted between the two events and no one from the top ones will double. Australian Jarred Tallent is also more likely to do the 50 km in London.


SYDNEY (AUS): Athletics Australia informed in a statement that javelin throw national record holder and world finalist Jarrod Bannister is currently part of an ongoing court case in relation to driving offences. The federation is currently seeking to gather all necessary information in order to undertake an internal investigation, in light of his breach of his Athletics Australia athlete contract. No further comment will be made until the outcomes of this investigation are established. Australian media are informing that he was charged with drink driving and four other charges.


BRUNSSUM (NED) : Dutch Hilda Kibet will lead the women's field at the Parelloop in Brunssum on April 1st. Kibet leads the list and is also defending champion over the 10K course in Brunssum organizers announce.


PARIS (FRA): 32 year-old French discus thrower Mélina Robert-Michon told athle.com she is very relieved she managed to qualify for the her fourth consecutive Olympic Games. At the European winter throwing cup the athlete managed a throw of 63.03, her furthest throw since 2009 and since giving birth to her first child in 2010. Robert-Michon added that once in the final of the Olympic Games she might be very close to the podium.


AUCKLAND (NZL): Young shot put sensation Jacko Gill and Olympic silver medallist Nick Willis have opted not to compete in their marquee events at this weekend's New Zealand Championships in Auckland. Gill will forgo the senior men's shot put event, which he will compete in at this year's London Olympics, in favour of the under-20 event while Willis will race the 5000m on Friday evening due to a strict training schedule reports stuff.co.nz.


LONDON (GBR): British star athlete Perri Shakes-Drayton has revealed her new website on www.perrishakesdrayton.com. Shakes-Drayton anchored the British 4x400m team in Istanbul and hopes to compete in London in both the 400 m hurdles and the 4x400m.


LONDON (GBR): Sebastian Coe has expressed confidence that when London 2012 passes on the Olympic Torch to Rio 2016 the Brazilian city will be capable of putting on a good show. The former double Olympic 1500 meters claimed he was impressed with the preparations at the start of a two-day trip to Rio de Janeiro writes Insidethegames.


MELBOURNE (AUS): Athletics Australia has announced a 16-strong team for the IAAF World Race Walking Cup to be held in Saransk, Russia on May 12-13. Headlining the team is dual-Olympic medallist Jared Tallent (Vic), who will compete across 50 km in his fifth IAAF World Race Walking Cup. He won bronze in the 50km walk at the 2010 event in Chihuahua and last year replicated that performance at the 2011 IAAF world championships in Daegu. Tallent said: "I'm looking forward to the World Cup. It will be the final competition for us before the Olympics and we're expecting it to be extremely tough in Russia. Of course the goal is to medal but it will be hard to get on the podium. However, if I do get on the podium it will be a massive boost leading into the Games, knowing that we've overcome extreme conditions, travel and tough competitions." Tallent will be joined by Ian Rayson in the longer event. In the men's 20 km event, Olympic nominee Luke Adams returns from injury to compete. Dane Bird-Smith and Rhydian Cowley will both make their senior debuts alongside Adams. Completing the men's 20km walk squad is Chris Erickson and Adam Rutter. In the women's 20km walk, Claire Tallent will be looking to better her top 20 finish from two years ago, accompanied by Regan Lamble, Beki Lee and Nicole Fagan. There are also 3 junior boys and 2 junior girls selected.







STELLENBOSCH (RSA, Mar 20): Additional results to first Yellow Pages series meet at sea level. African championships medalist Simon Magakwe won the 100 m in 10.34 (-0.2) and was even faster in heats with 10.29 (0.0). Elroy Gelant the fresh indoor record breaker from Istanbul was second in the 5000 m (13:25.98). Young long jumper Luvo Manyonga leaped to 8 meters in the long jump (+1.1) and huge improvement for the 21 years old 400 m runner Rorisang Rammonye from 53 level to 51.98.







EUGENE (USA): In the item about Chris Solinsky it should be corrected he is former US 10 000 m record holder.

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