Lavillenie to Nike Pre, by Alfons Juck, note by Larry Eder

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Renaud Lavillenie, photo by PhotoRun.net

Renaud Lavillenie, the gold medalist from London 2012, will be competing at the Nike Pre Classic on June 1, 2013, for the first time. He will be competing against silver medalist Bjorn Otto of Germany and bronze medalist Raphael Holzdeppe of Germany. The pole vault could be real battle! 

Ustalova 51.31 WL, Mudrov 234, Klishina 680
MOSCOW (RUS, Feb 13): 2010 European silver winner at 400 m Kseniya Ustalova highlighted the second day of Russian Indoor Championships with world leading 51.31 (also indoor PB for her). Second Kseniya Zadorina clocked nearly one second behind 52.29. In the long jump Darya Klishina with 680 beat Daegu medalist Olga Kucherenko 677 and good quality also third Svetlana Denyayeva 668. 2009 European junior champion Sergey Mudrov had a breakthrough high jump competition. He cleared 230 in first, passed 232 and improved to 234 with second clearance, even tried at 237 cm. Other medalists also from young generation with PB´s, second Dmitriy Semyonov 230 and third Danil Tsyplakov 230. European Champion 2010 Aleksandr Shustov only 220. Ruslan Samitov for first time achieved 17+ indoors in the triple jump with 17.06 ahead of Aleksey Fyodorov 16.92. Maksim Sidorov won the shot put with 20.10 over Valeriy Kokoyev 19.97 and Aleksandr Bulanov 19.86. In women shot put second best performer of the year olympic medalist Yevgeniya Kolodko with 19.24 ahead of Yevgeniya Solovyova 18.66 and Irina Tarasova 17.62. Women high jump showed a small crisis in the country when veterans Tatyana Kivimiagi and Irina Gordeyeva jumped only 191 to be on top. Yelena Kotulskaya (formerly Kofanova) won the 800 m in 2:02.24, Yelizaveta Savlinis the 200 m 23.42. On the men side quarter-miler Pavel Trenikhin won the 200 m 21.26 (in heats 21.25), Valentin Kruglyakov the 400 m (47.07) and Ivan Nesterov the 800 m in 1:48.11. In Russian speciality the 2000 m steeple races without water barrier Ildar Minshin was the best male in 5:27.41 and Rimma Rodko 6:09.12 on the women side. Here second Yevdokiya Bukina at age of 20 clocked good 6:12.76. Aleksandr Menkov topped long jump qualification (798) and Natalya Kutyakova women triple preliminary with second best mark of the season 14.50. 

Fyodorova 4622 points
SUMY (UKR, Feb 13): At first day of Ukrainian national indoor championships solid performance by Alina Fyodorova who with four personal bests improved in pentathlon to 4622 points (60 m hurdles 8.75 PB, high jump 185 PB, shot put 14.94 PB, long jump 616 and 800 m 2:17.20 PB). Anastasiya Mokhnyuk finished second also a life-time score of 4508 points (8.34 PB, 182 PB, 12.83, 624, 2:20.86 PB). But only one of them will go to Goteborg as second Ukrainian participant is Hanna Melnychenko who was invited based on 2012 results. In Sumy Melnychenko was second in the 60 m hurdles with 8.26 life-time best behind the winning Anna Plotitsyna 8.19. Another combined events star Oleksiy Kasyanov who will not perform this winter in heptathlon won 60 m hurdles in PB 7.85. European U23 silver medalist from 2011 Dmytro Savytskyy improved his PB in shot put to 20.27 m. Andriy Semenov finished second with only one successful attempt 18.90m but he had achieved Goteborg standard in qualification 19.60. European leader at the 1500 m Anzhelika Shevchenko confirmed her great shape winning her first round 800 m with indoor personal best 2:03.68. Oleksandr Venhlovsky was the best in the 10 000 m walk with 40:01.51 and Lyudmyla Shelest the women 5000 m walk 21:48.28.

Great times expected on Friday
RAS AL KHAIMAH (UAE):  Early morning fireworks are predicted on Friday at the 7th staging of the RAK Half Marathon as a mass of the world's top road runners gather for the now annual burn-up around this balmy coastal city's mangrove-clogged lagoon. Good weather, a virtually pancake flat course, fierce competition and a large prize purse have all combined well for each of the last six editions of this early bird event - the 7am start time seems to bother no-one, least of all the elite athletes from East Africa and it has been a Rift Valley born athlete who has taken the victors' spoils in every race, for men and women, so far. This is unlikely to change, but again it could be the ladies who steal the limelight as several have declared an interest in attacking existing records of genuine import. After the last two years' exploits of world record holder Mary Keitany, absent this year and currently expecting her second child, it is up to others. Turkey´s Elvan Abeylegesse, winner in 2010 in 1:07:07 returns, fresh from almost two years away from the competitive arena and has announced her plan to attack the European record that eluded her three years ago (1:06:25 of Lornah Kiplagat from 2007).  If Abeylegesse's ambition is tough, then there are Kenyans Florence Kiplagat and Lucy Kabuu. Such is the depth of the men's field, that marathon star Geoffrey Mutai is only seventh fastest with his best of 59:30 from Valencia over three years ago; he may have his eyes on April's London Marathon, but he will none the less likely have to run much faster if he wants to approach the British capital's race with a RAK title to his name. A late withdrawal with a foot injury, is his Kenyan compatriot, Micah Kogo. Organizers are informing.

Karoki wants to make the team
NAIROBI (KEN): Kenyan senior men's cross country champion Bedan Karoki says defending the title will not be his priority when the national championships are staged at Uhuru Gardens on Saturday. "I just want to be in the team (to the World Cross-country Championships in Bydgoszcz, Poland) but if a chance for me to defend the title presents itself, well and good," he said per The Nation. "With runners such as (Hosea Mwok) Macharinyang and (Discovery Cross senior men's winner) Kennedy Kipkemoi, the race should be quite tough," he said. The senior men's race will also see former world champion Joseph Ebuya seeking to regain the world title. The senior women's national title is open affair since Vivian Cheruiyot will not defend her title but will instead concentrate on training to defend her 5000m and 10,000m world titles in Russia in August. Another favourite for the senior women's race is Linet Masai. The 2010 World champion Emily Chebet has been doing well in the AK/KCB series and remains one of the favourites for medals in Poland next month.

Aman vs. Kaki vs. Osagie
BIRMINGHAM (GBR): Apart of Mo Farah running the 3000 m other great distances are planned for the British Athletics Grand Prix in Birmingham on Saturday (IAAF Indoor Permit). Men 800 m will see the best duel of the season with World indoor champion Mohamed Aman, fast Abubaker Kaki and British olympic finalist Andrew Osagie. The world lead should go in this race. Another top quality in men 1500 m with olympic medalist Abdelaati Iguider of Morocco, French Bob Tahri, Poland´s Marcin Lewandowski, Kenyan Bethwell Birgen and young Ethiopian Teshome Dirissa. Genzebe Dibaba is the main name in women 1500 m and in the women 800 m olympic medalist Yekaterin Poistogova is scheduled to compete against Jenny Meadows and Lynsey Sharp. 



OTHER NEWS

BRUSSELS (BEL): Olympic 5th placer and European Champion 2010 Kevin Borlee of Belgium will not run at the Millrose Games on Saturday. He was scheduled to compete in the 600 m world best attack against 800 m specialists Nick Symmonds and Duane Solomon. "Unfortunately I won't be running the Millrose Games. My back is still sore and i don't wanna take any risk for the up coming season," he posted on his twitter. Kevin Borlee clocked on Sunday new Belgian 300 m record 32.72 in Gent but lost to Czech Pavel Maslak (32.58). 

MELBOURNE (AUS): Just days after her photo spread for the world renowned Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Edition was revealed, rising star of Australian athletics and international YouTube sensation Michelle Jenneke ('Dancing Hurdler') has confirmed her commitment to compete at upcoming Qantas Australian Athletics Tour meets in Sydney and Melbourne.  Jenneke recently confirmed that she was planning to compete before her hometown crowd at the Sydney Track Classic on March 9 and at the Qantas Melbourne World Challenge at Lakeside Stadium on April 6. Previously committed to participate is South African Olympic and Paralympic 400 metre star Oscar Pistorius, Olympic gold medalist Valerie Adams, two-time Commonwealth Games javelin champion Sunette Viljoen and World Championship 400m hurdles finalist Cornel Fredericks of South Africa. 

NEW YORK (USA): In its biggest single-event sponsorship in more than a decade, USA Track & Field on Wednesday announced that it will launch the .US National Road Racing Championships in the fall of 2013. The announcement marks the beginning of a three-year partnership between USATF and Neustar, the administrator of the .US top-level domain, to initiate and grow a national-championship, mass-participation road race. The 12-kilometer (12 km) event will be a season-capping race to the USA Running Circuit (USARC), a series of races that annually provides nearly $1 million in prize money to American runners. The .US National Road Racing Championships alone will provide a combined $100,000 prize purse for men and women. The .US domain name is the official country code for the United States. Neustar, an information and analytics company based in Northern Virginia, offers over a decade of experience providing domain name registry services and critical infrastructure services and policy expertise for .US on behalf of the United States Department of Commerce.

NEW YORK (USA): In presence of stars like Yohan Blake or Haile Gebrselassie adidas unveiled the latest innovation called Boost for the running shoes. The event was held at the Javitz Convention Center of New York. 

KYIV (UKR): Former combined events senior coach (from 2003) and current coach of Heptathlon Beijing Olympic champion Nataliya Dobrynska Mykhaylo Medvid was appointed as national head coach of Ukrainian national team. Ukrainian Sport Committee also approved national coaches for group of events: Vyacheslav Tyrtyshnyk for jumps, Serhiy Krasovskyy for sprints, Yuriy Andrushchenko for endurance events and Anatoliy Konchyts for throws.  

MOSCOW (RUS): Reigning 110 m hurdles European champion Sergey Shubenkov after winning the national title on Tuesday with fast 7.50 world lead said to rusathletics.com he is satisfied with his performance in Moscow. "My shape is growing from one day to another and I feel I have good space to improve. I want to show fast time not only at 110 m but also at 60 m hurdles. European Indoor championships should be my season's point of control. I would like to add one more European win to my collection" said the 22-years old Russian. 

MOSCOW (RUS): European championships 2012 4th placer and Olympian Anastasiya Savchenko informed the Russian media she isn't planning to perform anywhere before European Indoor championships in Gotenborg. "I cleared personal best at National championships (470m) in one breath. I needed more competitions experience and I received it performing while in Glasgow, Moscow, Donetsk and Pardubice. Now I have to make little break in my schedule to enlarge my training loadings and make my best preparation for European Indoors". 

AMSTERDAM (NED): Dutch former world pole vault champion Rens Blom is convinced he could be back in top shape during the outdoor season. Blom retired some years ago due to injuries but when trying to jump in training Blom was surprised at the level of fitness he still had. Blom told Dutch media he aims at qualifying for the IAAF World championships in Moscow this summer.
 
BRUSSELS (BEL): Belgian upcoming decathlete Cedric Nolf told Het Nieuwsblad he is happy about his performances at the Record Bank Flanders indoor where he placed 2nd in the triathlon. His performances of 7.06 over 60 m, 14.20 in the shot put and 737 in the long jump showed he is stepping up and confirms his chances to be among the top favourites at this year's World university Games in Kazan. Nolf is set to compete at the Belgian national indoor championships and will then travel to South Africa for a four week training camp.
 
SPLIT (CRO): Croatian media are writing that discus olympic winner Sandra Perkovic split with coach Ivan Ivancic. She`ll be coached by Edis Elkasević who is former world junior champion in shot put and her boyfriend.

DUBLIN (IRL): Runnersworld.com writes that Irish singer Sinead O´Connor claimed she was a fast sprinter. "I was fast, a great sprinter: 100m in 11.3 seconds," she said in an article published last month by The Independent. "I was a kleptomaniac. I needed to be fast in order to avoid the cops," O'Connor told The Independent about her need for speed. We will agree that she's adept at playing fast and loose with the truth.

LAKE BIWA (JPN): Brett Larner writes on his blog that the Lake Biwa Mainichi Marathon has announced the elite field for this year's 68th running.  Heading the list is 2:05 man Vincent Kipruto of Kenya, 30 km world record holder Peter Kirui and 2012 Houston Marathon winner Tariku Jifar from Ethiopia to go up against Wilson Kipsang's 2:06:13 course record. In pursuit of both them and the Federation's sub-2:08 time requirement for a guaranteed spot on the 2013 World Championships is a solid field including four of the five Japanese men to break 2:10 at last year's Biwako, namely London Olympian Ryo Yamamoto, Tomoyuki Morita, Takashi Horiguchi and Masashi Hayashi, veterans Atsushi Fujita, Masakazu Fujiwara and Satoshi Osaki. From other international runners to mention Tokyo course record holder and European Champion Viktor Rothlin of Switzerland, Moroccan Abderrahime Bouramdane, James Mwangi another Kenyan, Russian Aleksey Reunkov with sub 2:10 best and Brazilian Paulo Roberto Paula.

DONETSK (UKR): Organizing committee of World Youth Championships 2013 decided to change the host broadcaster. This decision was made in Donetsk during a meeting of FLAU president Ihor Hotsul, the IAAF treasurer and organisational delegate Valentin Balakhnichev and IAAF Director of broadcasting Ernest Obeng. "Management of the Ukrainian First National Channel after given guarantees to our athletics federation more than two years ago had their doubts now about enough of company's resources for high quality TV pictures from Donetsk" said FLAU's president Ihor Hotsul. "On other hand TV company Donbas expressed willingness to take up the host broadcaster position for World Youth Championships. Donbas is part of big high technical equipped media group Ukraina based in Donetsk," said Hotsul. 

MOSCOW (RUS): Triple jump world indoor bronze medalist Lyukman Adams will miss all winter season because of an old injury. "I have had great autumn preparation for indoor season aiming to perform in Goteborg. But my old injury returned on the eve of New Year. We already tried all conservative methods of treatment but they were unsuccessful and we just lost a lot of time. So I'll have a surgery in the near future. According to doctors I'll stay in hospital only for one week and then need about 10 days for rehabilitation," 24-year-old Russian said to Rusathletics official web. London Olympics finalist hopes he'll be in time to make full preparation for World championships in Moscow and plans to open his summer season at the end of May. 

EUGENE (USA):  Olympic Pole Vault champion Renaud Lavillenie is ready to take the Prefontaine Classic to new heights when he competes at the Samsung Diamond League meeting in Eugene on June 1. Lavillenie will make his first-ever trip to Hayward Field to take on the two men who joined him on the Olympic podium last year - Bjorn Otto and Raphael Holzdeppe. Like Lavillienie, for Otto and Holzdeppe this will be their first visit to Eugene. The only Pre Classic entrant familiar with the Eugene facility is American record-holder Brad Walker who with 604 at the 2008 Pre Classic is US and stadium record holder. Three additional Olympians are confirmed for the Pre Classic field - Malte Mohr of Germany, Steve Lewis of Great Britain, and Konstadinos Filippidis of Greece. Informs IAAF.

OTTAWA (CAN): Athletics Canada in coordination with its five National Track League (NTL) competitions announced the scoring events which will be featured in the 2013 NTL series as well as the NTL bonus purse structure and eligible events.  Overall the 2013 NTL will award CAD 100 000 in cash prizes, not counting prize money up for grabs on a case by case basis by NTL competitions.  In NTL scoring events points are tabulated to determine who will earn NTL championship titles and take home the corresponding trophy and 4500 CAD cash prize. 

DORTMUND (GER): The German Indoor Championships to be held on February 23-24 in Helmut Korning Halle of Dortmund are sold out. All 7500 tickets have been sold. 

LAUSANNE (SUI): The first IOC Executive Board meeting of 2013 came to a close in Lausanne with the announcement that Buenos Aires, Glasgow and Medellín have been shortlisted to host the 3rd Summer Youth Olympic Games in 2018.

LOS ANGELES (USA): Asics is the new title sponsor of the LA Marathon. Through 2015, the company will lend its name and support to the city's premier running event, now called the Asics LA Marathon, which is growing in prominence nationally and internationally thanks to the world-class and iconic Stadium to the Sea course. This year will be held on March 17.

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