Tougher Stance by WMM by Alfons Juck, WMM Draws line in sand,note by Larry Eder

In the last few months of Lance Armstrong on Oprah, and Olympic athletes loosing medals eight years after the competition, the word is finally getting out that no one is immune. There is a big difference from rumors, and such. 

Chicago Marathon 2012 Winners-12.jpeg
2012 B of A Chicago Marathon, 
photo from Chicago Marathon

Now, it looks to this observer like 95-97 percent of the real cheaters in our sport are being caught. I also believe, as melodramatic as the Lance Armstrong debacle was and is, it is a deterrent to cheating. Simply put, the level of embarrassment and chastisement that Lance Armstrong will receive over the rest of his natural life just is not worth it. 

Now, the World Marathon Majors have put the proverbial line in the sand. Not only can you not participate if you have had a drug positive in their events, WMM will take your prize purse, your performance bonuses away, and in some cases, even demand repayment. 

If our sport is to be recognized as a professional sport, and we are to attract real money from global companies who should be clamoring to a sport that could end the epidemic of obesity, can promotes running, jumping and throwing, something kids and adults can do anywhere in the world, we must be the leader in promoting a clean sport. 

We live in a society that celebrates ignorance, slothfulness and just plain bad manners on the  most popular television shows. Albert Einstein would get less TV time that Paris Hilton, and that is a shame. 

Runblogrun salutes the World Marathon Majors. By showing athletes and their teams that cheating comes at a huge price, WMM has put together the next level of anti-doping programs. Bravo! 
Oscar granted bail
PRETORIA (RSA): The outcome. Oscar Pistorius was granted bail, allowing him to go free while awaiting trial in the shooting death of his girlfriend, a magistrate ruled Friday. In a decision that took nearly two hours for him to explain, magistrate Desmond Nair said Pistorius is not a flight risk and does not show "a propensity for violence" or constitute a risk to the community. Bail was set at 1 million rand (USD 112,803) and a court date was set for June 4. Pistorius has been ordered to surrender his passport and refrain from contact with any witnesses for the prosecution. He is not allowed to use prohibited substances or alcohol and is subject to testing, the judge said. Pistorius coach said when bail will be confirmed he should start with training soon. Agencies are informing.

Tougher stance
TOKYO (JPN): World Marathon Majors (WMM) members Tokyo, Boston, London, Berlin, Chicago and New York have collectively revised their elite athlete contracts to include stricter anti-doping penalties. New provisions will include the right for the events to suspend payment and to demand repayment of prize money, appearances fees, and performance bonuses for any athlete found in violation of a criminal offense involving drugs, anti-doping rules, or if for any other reason the athlete's result has been nullified by a relevant governing body. These new penalties are part of WMM's continuing effort to be a leader in the anti-doping movement, having gone above and beyond standard drug testing at its events. WMM has supported increasing the number and frequency of out-of-competition drug tests in Ethiopia and Kenya. Additionally, WWM has previously agreed that any athlete found guilty of a doping offence will not be invited back to its races. New anti-doping provisions in WMM elite athlete contracts will include  that if the athlete is found--before, during or after the term of the agreement--to have committed a criminal offence involving drugs, or an anti-doping rule violation, or if for any other reason the athlete's result in the marathon is later nullified by a relevant governing body, then the marathon organizer will have the rights to reduce or suspend payments and ask for repayment from the athlete.

Last international meet indoors
METZ (FRA): Last international all-events meeting of this indoor season will be on Sunday in Metz (after Goteborg still some special pole vault and high jump events to be staged). The Metz Moselle Athleror Indoor will have olympic winner Renaud Lavillenie as top name for the pole vault. His main rivals recently improved olympic finalist Jan Kudlicka of Czech Republic and Greek record holder Kostadinos Filippidis. Steeple specialist Bob Tahri runs the 2000 m, in men 3000 m top name Kenyan Vincent Rono, in women 3000 m Ethiopian Almaz Ayana against Moroccan Siham Hilali. Women 400 m will have a nice duel of Jamaican Patricia Hall with Cuban record holder Indira Terrero and home star Muriel Hurtis. US Virgins Islands fast sprinter Laverne Jones-Ferrette is the star of women 60 m against fresh Czech record holder Katerina Cechova. In men 60 m Kim Collins will finish his indoor season against Yuniel Perez and second from French nationals Emmanuel Biron. Dimitri Bascou will fight against top two Italians in 60 m hurdles (Abate, Dal Molin). Triple olympic finalist Benjamin Compaore has as main rivals Ukrainian Viktor Yastrebov and Tosin Oke who represents Nigeria.


STOCKHOLM (SWE, Feb 21): Swedish young star Irene Ekelund (15) improved not only Swedish junior record at XL-Galan with 7.32 at 60 m but also European Youth Indoor best which was before 7.35 by Katharine Merry in 1989 and  Asha Philip in 2007. Her 23.15 at 200 m from last week were also a World Youth indoor Best (improving Sanya Richards 23.22 in 2002).
TORONTO (CAN): On March 22nd, UTSB will be hosting its 2nd Annual Sports Industry Conference with some of the most prominent leaders in today's sports industry. The event will hosted and catered at the Royal Ontario
Museum. The day's schedule includes a Keynote speech by Gord Kirke, a mediator at Global Resolutions as well as a Sports Law Professor at University of Toronto.  Panel discussion about "Contract Law in Sports" will feature also track agent Kris Mychasiw from the Surin Group, Dave Goldstein from Cassel Brock, Daniel Ages an NHL Lawyer, and Don Meehan from Newport Sports Management, all to provide their perspective into the process of contracts and negotiation. To follow, there will be a discussion about "Sponsorship and Branding Valuation Panel".

HONGKONG (HKG): The final 100 m of the Hongkong marathon last year looked like a tag-team wrestling match, with four men sprinting to the line, arms and legs flying every which way. Dereje Abera of Ethiopia (course record 2:11:27) emerged from the scrum at the last second to snatch victory and the 50 000 USD first prize. But, returning to defend his title in Sunday's 17th annual Standard Charted Hong Kong Marathon, he still recalls the photo-finish with bemusement. Race date is determined by Chinese New Year, which was earlier this year, so the race is three weeks later than 2012, and in this part of the world that means potential 20C and humid conditions towards the end of the race, which begins at 0700 local time. On paper, there is a very evenly balanced men's elite field - six runners within a minute of one another between 2.08 and 2.09. But since James Mbugua ran his 2.08.05 in Nairobi, at 1500 metres altitude, that might just prove to be an advantage here right beside the South China Sea. In contrast to the men's tight finish, the returning women's winner, Misiker Demissie was a minute and a half ahead of her pursuers in 2012. Writes Pat Butcher (

TOKYO (JPN): New York Marathon race director Mary Wittenberg tweeted from Tokyo: "Humbled & honored - the Tokyo Marathon & their marathon runners just donated 50k to Sandy relief efforts in NY."

TOKYO (JPN): One of the favorites of Tokyo Marathon James Kwambai doesn't want to mention a specific time and Mike Kipyego said 2:05 is possible on this course. He said he is ready to defend his title and as training went well he is confident to be successful. But the top favorite on paper is Dennis Kimetto who clocked 2:04:16 last year. Others sub 2:05 runner in the field is Ethiopian Dino Sefir and Kenyan Jonathan Maiyo, and sub-2:23 women Irina Mikitenko, Bezunesh Bekele, Aberu Kebede and Caroline Cheptonui Kilel.

DEN HAAG (NED): Young Kenyan Ezekiel Chebii is announced as one of the favourites for the ABN AMRO CPC Loop Den Haag on March 10th. Chebii, who holds a personal best of 59:05, currently trains in Eldoret with Moses Mosop, Sammy Kitwara and Wilson Chebet and confirmed that he could possibly run very fast.
EINDHOVEN (NED): The 30th edition of the Lage Landen Marathon of Eindhoven on October 13th is promising to be a lot faster as organizers have announced some adjustments to the course. Especially the last two kilometers of the course have been made faster and should lead to faster marathon times. Organizers confirmed that in 2014 they will try to attack the men's world marathon record.

SAN ANTONIO (USA): Local media are informing that sub 11 sprinter Marshevet Hooker (10.86 in 2011) returned to Southwest High School on Thursday vowing to continue her quest for victories on the world's biggest stages, including the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro. Sidetracked from competition last summer when she took the Olympic year off to have a baby, the 28-year-old Grand Prairie resident isn't planning on giving up on sprinting anytime soon. "Last year just gave me a chance to rest," the 2003 Southwest graduate said. "I mean, I've been going since high school and I never really had a break." Now she is training for the upcoming outdoor season, including the world championships in Russia this summer.

NAIROBI (KEN): Athletics Kenya said that three marathon athletes had been banned for doping: Wilson Erupe Loyanae, Nixon Kiplagat Cherutich and Moses Kiptoo Kurgat.  Loyanae was the winner of last October's Dong-A Ilbo Gyeongju Marathon where he set a course record 2:06:46.  He will be stripped of that title. "Loyanae is a top marathoner and he is in the top 30 but we will not spare anyone, we are taking doping seriously," Athletics Kenya secretary David Okeyo told Capital FM in an interview. He added: "We have nothing to hide. As soon as we establish any athlete has doped, we shall expose them." Writes Race Results Weekly.

GOLD COAST (AUS): Olympic winner Sally Pearson wrote on her facebook that: "I am in the process of writing a book which should be out for Xmas...not the story of my life...I am NOT that is hopefully a book that inspires and motivates people, particularly Australia's youth, to strive for success. I am excited and enjoying the challenge." The publisher is Hardie Grant. Pearson started her year last weekend with 23.51 200 m race in rain.

SOPOT (POL): In recent days IAAF visited the Ergo Arena of Sopot, site of 2014 World Indoor Championships. The delegation headed by competitions director Paul Hardy reviewed the time table, accomodation plan. The dates approved for the event are March 7-9. Together with city of Torun Sopot will buy a new track which will be shared. In 2014 for the national championships and world championships in Sopot, but then should be used in the Torun hall.  Ergo Arena will be out of function early 2014 for two months for preparation works for the championships.
CHIHUAHUA (MEX): European walkers will have it tough when the IAAF Race Walking Challenge begins on Saturday in Mexico. In women 20 km Ines Henriques and Ana Cabecinha of Portugal, with Belarus Alena Matviychuk and Russian Tatyana Sibileva. In men 50 km Grzegorz Sudol of Poland with Belarus Andrey Stepanchuk.  In the men 20 km Andriy Talashko of Belarus will fight against home Mexican favorites.

ALBUFEIRA (POR): IAAF informs that despite having to face some problems with the budget for this year, the 36th Almond Blossom Cross Country, an IAAF Cross Country Permit Meeting, is looking forward to an exciting day of racing on Sunday. Organisers will this weekend also reveal their plans for the 2014 edition, where they hope to combine the European Champion Clubs Cup Cross Country with the event. Last year's winners Josphat Menjo and Gorreti Jepkoech of Kenyan will return to defend their titles.


BRUSSELS (BEL): Belgium 4x400 m relay team will travel to Gotenborg for the European indoor championships confirmed head coach Jacques Borlée for the RTBF. Borlée added that Jonathan Borlée will not compete as part of the team as he is still suffering from a minor injury. Kevin Borlée will head the team that also includes Nils Duerinck, Antoine Gillet, Arnaud Ghislain and Tim Rummens. Apart of home team of Sweden other nations for male relay will be Great Britain, Russia, Germany and Poland. 
BRUSSELS (BEL): Belgian decathlete Hans Van Alphen now officially confirmed he will not be traveling to Gotenborg for the European indoor championships. Van Alphen already previously announced he had sustained a small tear in the medial ligament of his knee and was unlikely to compete. Also not competing from the 2012 invited athletes is Russian Sergey Sviridov and Dutch Ingmar Vos.
DORTMUND (GER): 20-year old German hurdler Gregor Traber is confident about defending his German national indoor title this weekend as he told he is in top shape. Traber also confirmed his main goal for the season are the IAAF World Championships in Moscow and the European U23 championships in Tampere. Also confirmed to race is European 2010 champion Verena Sailer who was in recent day ill fith a flu. 

STOCKHOLM (SWE): Host country Sweden named the team for the European Indoor Championships with top medal hopes Michel Torneus in long jump and Abeba Aregawi in the women 1500 m.  There are still possibilities for additions until Sunday. The Team - men - 60 m: Rose, Tarnhuvud, Baptiste, 400 m: Wissman, Francois, for relay de Oliveira, Forsman, 800 m: Rogestedt, 3000 m: Hyden, Bouafif, 60 m hurdles: Nossmy, Brorsson, Loov, PV: Jeng, Jacobsson, LJ: Torneus, Otterling, SP: L. Arrhenius, N. Arrhenius, hept: Olson. Women - 400 m: Hjelmer, for relay Magnusson, Persson, Moraiti, Tornemark, 1500 m: Aregawi, Schonbeck, 3000 m: Fougberg, HJ: Green Tregaro, Jungmark, Nordstrom, PV: Bengtsson, Dahlstrom, LJ: Jarder, SP: Engman, C. Andersson, pent: Linde, Hallin.

PRAHA (CZE): Czech Athletics Federation confirmed on Friday the Goteborg selection with 19 athletes, 10 women and 9 men. Some hopes still remain until the Sunday deadline for the men 4x400 m relay which is in position of first alternate team, the same goes for Eliska Klucinova for pentathlon. Head coach Tomas Dvorak hopes the team is able to repeat the great success from Paris 2011 (2 golds and one silver and bronze). The main medal hopes are Pavel Maslak in the 400 m, Jan Kudlicka and Jirina Svobodova in the pole vault, good chances also for women relay and list leader Martin Stasek in the shot put. Sprinter Jan Veleba who fulfilled the 60 m standard refused the selection due to planned groin surgery. The team - men - 400 m: Maslak, Prorok, 800 m: Kubista, 60m hurdles: Mazac, HJ: Baba, PV: Kudlicka, SP: Prasil, Stasek, hept: Helcelet. Women - 60 m: Cechova, Prochazkova, 400 m: Hejnova, Rosolova, for the relay Masna, Bartonickova, Seidlova, 800 m: Masna, 60 m hurdles: Skrobakova, PV: Svobodova, Malacova. 

LAUSANNE (SUI): The qualification period for European Indoor Championships ends this weekend. Countries still staging their national championships are Germany (Dortmund), Slovakia (Bratislava), Austria (Vienna, only on Saturday), Demark (Skive) and Hungary (Budapest).

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