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The Drake Relays is the largest Relay meeting in the Midwest and has sold out for over three decades. The sponsor, Hy-Vee, is one of the largest supporters of track & field in North America. The events that they sponsor at the Drake Relays has added to the brand of the Relays. If you are in the Midwest, please purchase from Hy-Vee stores, as they have put their money where their mouth is-they actually sponsor our sport!

James-MerrittFH1-Drake14.jpgKirani James and LaShawn Merritt duel at Drake Relays 2015, photo by

Updated July 16, 2017. Originally published January 20, 2017.

As we get into the middle of July, many of the 550,000 high school boys and girls who will run high school cross country in the fall of 2017, we have been reposting the suggestions from Coach Frank Gagliano, HOKA ONE ONE NJNYTC. "Gags" has coached cross country runners for over fifty years. Gags provides some good ideas on coaching cross country runners for the Fall.

Coach Gags explains it all -thumb-500x273-21143.pngFrank Gagliano and Larry Eder, November 4, 2016, photo by The Shoe Addicts

Coaching is both art and science. Great coaches are made, carefully hones over decades. They learn from successes and from failures. They learn from discussions with fellow coaches. They never stop learning.

Coach Gags is an example of such a person. He is one of the finest coaches in the world. He is more, however, than a man who will teach you how to run a better 800 meters or finish faster in a semi-final. He challenges you to be a better human being. That is what coaches do, help us be our better selves. The late Sam Adam, coach and Director of Track & Field at UC Santa Barbara once told me to always remember, that coaches are educators.

Here is part three of our interview with Frank Gagliano, coach of the HOKA ONE ONE New Jersey New York Track Club. Special thanks to The Shoe Addicts, the digital partners of RunBlogRun.

Rohler has a busy schedule
JENA (GER): Javelin sensation from Doha Thomas Rohler has now a full competition programme. He will throw on Saturday at a special javelin meet in Offenburg organised by another German thrower Johannes Vetter. Then he flies to Kawasaki for the IAAF World Challenge meet in Japan on May 22. Next meet will be Golden Gala of Rome, his home meet in Jena on June 11 followed by two competitions in Finland. Turku Paavo Nurmi Games as already announced on June 13 and Kuortane on June 17. He will meet current world record holder Jan Zelezny on June 28in Czech Republic at the IAAF World Challenge Ostrava Golden Spike.
RunBlogRun opines: Thomas Rohler threw 93.90 meters, becomng the second longest thrower ever, at last week's Doha DL meeting. Thomas began throwing the javelin at the age of 17. Until then, from the age of ten, Thomas competed in various track & field events as is part of German sports programs. He had qualified for the London 2012 Olympics, but, as he was under 20, the German Federation did not allow him to compete in London. Rohler won the Rio Olympics, and how has this Monster throw. Looking forward to seeing how Thomas does later in the season.

Adrian Martinez Classic .jpg

This meet is one of the most important meets I go to each and every year. It is important because it honors a young man who lived his life quietly and lovingly, Adrian Martinez. The meet has gone from a small community meet to a meet that welcomes local runners, elite runners and also unified events (options for athletes who compete in Special Olympics).

Why is it important? It reminds us of our roots. Small meets, a small group of fans and friends, and races for everyone who wants to race. Several elite races for us to enjoy and some fun New England surprises (last year, Tommy Ratcliffe ran 4:01.50, a New England record). And it is the perfect type of event for HOKA ONE ONE to support. HOKA ONE ONE is one of the most successful footwear start ups of the last decade. Staying grass roots, HOKA ONE ONE has grown to be a global phenonmenon.

Women's 5000 meters.jpgWomen's 5000 meters, Adrian Martinez Classic, June 2016, photo by Kevin Morris

My dream? I would love to see four meets like this, around the country, providing the combination of local runners, unified runners and elite runners, on a local track. I will be there, and hope that you will too. If not, follow our coverage at @runblogrun on Fb, twitter, Instagram.

Press release is just below and all social media contacts are listed!

Taylor_Christian1-PreC16.jpgChristian Taylor, photo by

Christian Taylor is the finest triple jumper in the world. It is not merely the gold medals in London 2012 and Rio 2016, but it was his ability to bring himself back from bad competitions, that makes him a champion. I also like his love of competition.

Drake Relays continues to build its fields. Thanks to Hy-vee for sponsoring such a fine event.

As many of you know, Norb Sander, aka Dr. Norb Sander, Jr., 1974 NYC Marathon champion and the man of vision behind the ressurgence of the Fort Washington Armory, passed away on Friday March 17. The following is the statement from Michael Frankfurt, Chairman of the Armory Foundation, on the passing of our friend, Dr. Norbert Sander, Jr.

norb sander.jpgDr. Norb Sander, Jr. with some of the Armory Kids, photo courtesy of NYC Armory

Duplantis_Mondo19-1R1a-NBiN17.JPGArmand Duplantis, photo by

NEW YORK (USA): Armand Duplantis has said he will compete at both the European U20 Championships in Grosseto and the World Championships in London this summer, informs Track & Field News. "Right now, I'm focused on London, the World Championships. And I want to go in there and make the finals for sure and see if I can get on the podium," he said. Duplantis set a world U20 pole vault record of 5.82m in New York last weekend.

One of my favorite events to watch at the Pre Classic is the Men's shot put. Big guys throwing sixteen pound metal balls. And they throw them far, very far. The speed, the power, and the sounds!

Ryan Crouser, 2016 Olympic champion, is back. And he has already began his 2017 season with three throws over 22 meters down in New Zealand!

I can not wait to see how this match goes! The best in the shot put at Hayward Field! Surely, Pre will be there, in his hoodie, sharing a beverage and a burrito, as he watches the meet named in his honor.

Crouser_RyanW-USOlyTr16.jpgRyan Crouser, photo by

0022_000358.jpgKombank Arena, Belgrade, Serbia, photo by European Athletics

BELGRADE (SRB): AIPS informs that the European Indoors were success also from media working conditions point of view. "We have worked to accommodate the needs of 650 accredited media, 250 written press, over 100 photographers, which is a lot more than usual, and which brings with it a new level of organizational needs. Thanks to the size of the venue, we have had the space to block seats and create the necessary photo positions," said EA Media consultant Stefan Thies. Kronen Zeitung journalist Olaf Brockmann (his last event for the paper but will continue as consultant for the IAAF) who has covered 22 European Athletics Indoor Championships, with reporting spanning over thirty years judged the media conditions in Belgrade as "very good."

RunBlogRun opines: With unobstructed views at seating, consistent wifi, reasonable charges for snacks, and an excellent official website, Media had great support. The European Indoor Championships were much better than some global venues that we have worked, and I have worked at nine Olympics, 20 World and 7 European champs, and Belgrade was one of the best. The reasonable hotel costs, meal costs and airfare also play into a strong venue.

0022_000358.jpgKombank Arena, Belgrade, photo by European Athletics

BELGRADE (SRB): Belgrade is planning to bid for the 2020 World Indoor Championships and the city is also considering a bid for the European Championships, informs "These Championships are very important for us to show what we are capable of. Our strategy is to promote Serbia as a country of sportsmen and women, and we will be a candidate for the World Indoors in 2020," said Belgrade's Mayor Sinisa Mali. "We are working very closely with the Government and looking at building a huge national stadium in Belgrade which could hold such an event, not just for athletics but other sports as well," he said on hosting an outdoor championships.

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