Friday, May 18, 2018

Erb, Wynne impress in Los Angeles


MJ Erb and Henry Wynne turned in promising performances  at the USATF Distance Classic in Los Angeles last night.

Erb (above, photo: USATF) took victory in the men’s 3000m steeplechase in 8:32.78 ahead of Travis Mahoney (8:33.09) and Brandon Doughty (8:33.43). It was the first outdoor track race of the year for Erb, a member of the Saucony Freedom Track Club, and bodes well for a promising summer for the 24-year-old.

In the men’s 800m, his fellow Kimbia athlete Henry Wynne broke new ground with a lifetime best of 1:48.36, a race won by Craig Engels of the Nike Oregon Project in 1:47.40. Wynne, the 2016 NCAA indoor mile champion, showed his speed is still in a good place ahead of the summer, and so too his endurance, having clocked a 5000m PR of 13:30.43 at the Payton Jordan Invitational in Stanford a fortnight earlier.

The next major meeting on the horizon for Kimbia’s athletes is the Prefontaine Classic in Eugene next week, with Wynne and Izaic Yorks likely to line up in the international mile, Colleen Quigley in the women’s 1500m and Evan Jager in the men’s 3000m steeplechase. For an in-depth chat with Jager ahead of his season opener, this podcast (embedded below), in which he talks to Lindsay Hein, is well worth a listen.

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Monday, April 30, 2018

Rest in Peace, Bruce Tulloh


We at Kimbia express our deepest condolences to the family of Bruce Tulloh, a dear friend and one of the most respected and loved figures in the sport, who passed away last weekend at the age of 82.

Tulloh, pictured above (photo by Getty Images), was European 5000m champion in 1962 and a prolific coach and writer after his retirement, one whose work helped foster the next generation of distance runners.

Bruce stood out from his peers during his competitive career, not only for his talent but also his approach. He was the first non-African to compete without shoes at the top level, a decision which saw many mimic his style in the years that followed and eventually spurned the barefoot running craze that swept throughout the sport over the past two decades.

But he excelled far beyond the track. He broke the world record for the coast-to-coast run across America, covering 2876 miles in just 64.9 days to take more than four days off the previous best. And he did it without a big support crew, just his wife Sue and young son Clive for company.

As a writer, he published 23 titles and the wisdom within them prevails today. Like a true running addict, he remained competitive into his 70s, even clocking a mind-boggling 1:16 half marathon at the age of 60.

At Kimbia, we had the pleasure of interviewing Bruce during the production of Bannister a number of years ago, a documentary about Roger Bannister accomplishing ‘Everest on the Track’with his four-minute mile in 1954.

For all of his achievements, Tulloh will be remembered best by those who knew him for his manner – an incredible storyteller, a font of running wisdom and a generous man who gave the world so much. For more on him, Roger Robinson’s piece in Athletics Weekly is well worth a read.

May he rest in peace.

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Wednesday, April 25, 2018

Kimbia crew impress in California


World steeplechase medalist Evan Jager opened his season with a win at the Bryan Clay Invitational last week in California, an event where several of his Kimbia colleagues were also in action.

Jager took a narrow win over Isaac Kimeli of Belgium in the men’s 5000m, holding on down the home stretch to break the tape in 13:24.77, just in front of Kimeli in 13:24.92. Suguru Osako of the Nike Oregon Project was third in 13:29.11. This was Jager’s third race of the year, having finished fifth at the USATF Cross Country Championships and clocked a 3:58 mile indoors. Fellow Kimbia athlete Lopez Lomong was unable to finish in the same race.

Earlier this week, Jager announced his first steeplechase outing of the season will come at the Prefontaine Classic in Eugene, which takes place on May 26 in Hayward Field. The Olympic silver medalist will take on his conqueror in Rio, Kenya’s Conseslus Kipruto, who will go to Eugene fresh from victory at the Commonwealth Games in Gold Coast this month. Morocco’s Soufiane El Bakkali, 22, the silver medalist at last year’s World Outdoor Championships, is also in the field.

In the women’s 5000m, Amy Cragg failed to finish in her first outing since clocking 2:21:42 to finish third at the Tokyo Marathon in February.

Colleen Quigley started the outdoor season the way she raced indoors – impressively – as she took second place in the women’s 1500m in 4:07.01, not far behind her Bowerman Track Club teammate Shelby Houlihan (4:06.07).

Courtney Frerichs finished ninth in the same race in 4:14.62, her first race since last year’s outdoor track season. Full results here.

At the USATF Road Mile Championships in Iowa, Henry Wynne finished 13th in 4:07.99, a race won by Riley Masters in 4:03.99.

Results: 5000m , Bryan Clay Invitational

1. Evan Jager – Nike/BowermanTC 13:24.77
2. Isaac Kimeli 13:24.92 Belgium
3. Suguru Osako- Nike Oregon Project 13:29.11
4. Sydney Gidabuday JR – Adams State 13:29.31
5.Robin Hendrix- Unattached 13:29.57
6. Matthew Baxter SR – Northern Arizona 13:31.00
7. Colby Gilbert SR – Washington 13:41.88
8. Cooper Teare FR – Oregon 13:46.46
9.  Joe Hardy SR – Wisconsin 13:46.85
10. Futsum Zienasellassie – Hoka One One / NAZ Elite 13:47.09

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Monday, April 16, 2018

Brilliant Bumbalough takes fifth as Flanagan battles to seventh in Boston


On what proved a gruelling day for all competitors, Kimbia athletes Andrew Bumbalough and Shalane Flanagan battled to strong performances at the Boston Marathon today, Bumbalough turning in a superb performance to finish fifth in 2:19:52, less than four minutes behind race winner Yuki Kawauchi and just over a minute off a podium finish.

Flanagan, meanwhile, endured a rough time in the conditions, with freezing temperatures, driving rain and a constant headwind hammering the runners throughout. In a race won by fellow American Desi Linden in 2:39:54, Flanagan battled to seventh place in 2:46:31.

“It was basically the nastiest conditions you could imagine running in,” said Bumbalough. “I made the decision early not to go with the lead group, it just felt a little quick for the day and we had a nice solid group of guys that stayed together for a long time. I’m really happy with the decision I made to run a pace I knew I could run for the day and see what that got me. I never anticipated how much the front group would blow up but I made the exact decision I wanted to.

“We run in pretty tough conditions in Portland, but it’s never like this. This was a deluge, an atmospheric river. I knew it was going to be tough. I didn’t realize it would be as tough as it was, but I was ready.”

It was Bumbalough’s first time cracking the top five at a major marathon. “Fifth place is great, I beat dudes I had no business beating,” he said.

His interview with Letsrun.com afterwards:

In the women’s race, reigning New York City Marathon champion Shalane Flanagan endured a tough day at the office, the Marblehead native forced to make a quick pitstop early in the race to use the portable bathroom. She soon rejoined the lead pack, but when the field began to splinter in the latter of the race, Flanagan was soon detached. Nonetheless, on a day where more than half of the elite fields failed to finish, Flanagan drew on all her resolve to reach the finish at Boylston Street.


Linden had told Flanagan early in the race that she planned to drop out, but she nonetheless helped Flanagan to rejoin the pack after her bathroom break. “She said: ‘I’ll help you get back to the pack,’” said Flanagan. “I like Des and I don’t mind talking to my friends when I’m racing. I think she wanted me to know if she could help me out, if she was going to drop out, she was willing to help me.”

On her end result, Flanagan said: “It was good, but not what I wanted. Boston is known as being a magical place, but you never know what you’re going to get. There’s nothing easy about Boston.”

Men’s result 


Women’s result

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Saturday, April 14, 2018

Flanagan, Bumbalough ready for battle in Boston


As she prepares for Monday’s Boston Marathon, Shalane Flanagan says she is in similar shape to last November, when the Bowerman Track Club athlete memorably claimed victory at the New York City Marathon.

Flanagan told Letsrun.com that her training has gone well and she believes she’s prepared to make a bold bid for her first victory in the race.

“Good, yeah, no complaints,” she said, when quizzed about her shape. “I did some sessions that were a little bit hillier to get ready for the course in Boston. It went really well so I feel safe to say I’m in similar shape to New York.”

Asked whether it will be her last marathon, Flanagan said: “I don’t know. I think it’ll probably be my last Boston, but I don’t know if it’ll be my last marathon.”

Flanagan’s life became a whirlwind in the immediate aftermath of her victory in New York, but the Marblehead native has since returned to normality as she’s laid down a heavy training block in preparation for Boston.

“After New York, I was really fatigued doing a lot of extracurricular activities and I was still running and trying to train at the same time,” she said. “And it’s really exhausting trying to do both. I was more fatigued going into this buildup because I didn’t really get a break or rest or Sanything.”

Monday’s weather is set to prove suitably adverse, with cold temperatures, rain and a headwind set to greet runners at the start in Hopkinton.

“I don’t see it as a disadvantage,” said Flanagan. “I train in conditions that are pretty similar in Oregon to what the forecast is. In general I like to have races where it’s as fair as possible, but I’m not opposed to this weather. I’m totally fine with it.”

In the men’s race, Andrew Bumbalough will be the sole representative for Kimbia, the 31-year-old bringing a PB of 2:13:58 to the race. He ran that in Tokyo in February 2017, and followed that up with a 13th place finish in Chicago last October. If things fall right for him on Monday, a top-10 finish may well be on the cards.

 

 

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