Evan Jager, photo by evanjager.com
Evan Jager, AR holder in steeplechase, and WC silver and Olympic bronze medalist, had some fine comments on the Qualification suspension. While I understand WA’s decision, I am not sure that it corresponds to anything that is helpful to athletes. Jager knows about motivation.
His AR of 8:00.45, in Paris Areva DL in 2015, perhaps the most gut wrenching performance that I have ever seen, was mind blowing. I have the only time I have recorded the f word while watching a live event.
We will let Evan explain his thoughts:
Pretty disappointed about this decision. Even if COVID-19 clears up in some countries and it’s safe to compete, WA takes away a MAJOR motivation to run fast this year. I understand freezing the World Rankings but I feel achieving the Olympic Standard should still be on the table. https://t.co/MXyecRnTVk
— Evan Jager (@EvanJager) April 8, 2020
I like Evan Jager. He is gutty, focused and an amazingly talented athlete. It used to be that, at least in US, steeplers were misfits, not fit for other events. Then came Horace Ashenfelter, gold medalist in 1952. He was fast over all distances. In 1968, we had George Young, a 4 time Olympian at steeple to 5000m, who took Olympic bronze.
To me, the classic steepler was the late Bronislaw Malinowski, Olympic champion in 1980 Moscow, who chased Filbert Bayi down and took gold (he had hurdled Frank Baumgartner in 1976 to take the silver). Malinowski could race the mile (3:54) to the 5000m (13:17) to the 10,000m (27:53).
Jager is a world class 1,500m runner and could (and should) go 12:50 at the 5000m.
His injuries that past couple years have been frustrating for him, but we hope to see the former Badger over the barriers soon!
A class act, nice to see Evan speaking out about the WA decisions.