Sunday, March 4, 2018

Rest in peace, Sir Roger Bannister

Kimbia athletics would like to extend its sympathies to the family, friends and all those lucky enough to know Sir Roger Bannister, who has passed away at the age of 88.

Bannister was one of the most beloved athletes ever to grace a track with his presence, and will forever be immortalized by his achievement in becoming the first man in history to break the four-minute-mile. Despite juggling his work as a full-time junior doctor, Bannister broke through a barrier many had believed was impossible at the Iffley Road Track in Oxford, a story we were honored to help document in recent years in the film Bannister: Everest on the Track.

In a moving tribute in Time Magazine, Nike founder Phil Knight recalled his trip to the Empire Games to watch Bannister’s unforgettable clash with John Landy.

After his racing career, Bannister went on to become a distinguished neurologist, working well into his eighties, and he every bit as accomplished in that field as he was on the track.

A statement from his family said: “Sir Roger Bannister died peacefully in Oxford on 3 March, aged 88, surrounded by his family who were as loved by him, as he was loved by them. He banked his treasure in the hearts of his friends.”

As the great man said himself: “If there was the opportunity to climb a mountain, or to go ballooning, or some adventurous activity, I would always be keen to do it.”

His 88 years were testament to that, a life lived to its absolute peak, one which will be forever missed, never forgotten.

Below is a longer version of an interview with Phil Knight from Everest on the Track.

Phil Knight-Empire Games

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Friday, March 2, 2018

Quigley through to world final in Birmingham

Colleen Quigley (photo: Jordan Beckett) produced an outstanding run to reach the world 1500m final in Birmingham on Friday night, the Bowerman Track Club athlete coming from behind on the final lap to finish second in her heat in 4:09.31.

Quigley will compete in the final at 8:39pm alongside her teammate at the Bowerman Track Club, Shelby Houlihan, who advanced as a non-automatic qualifier in the third and final heat. There was some measure of difficulty in today’s heat, with Quigley colliding with Sweden’s Meraf Bahta with a couple of laps to run.

“It’s an indoor track, so there’s lots of arms and legs flying around, but I was feeling really good and relaxed right before that happened. I had to fight really hard that last 100.”

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Sunday, February 25, 2018

Third in Tokyo for Classy Cragg in 2:21:42

Amy Cragg turned in a stunning performance at the Tokyo Marathon on Sunday morning, finishing third in a huge lifetime best of 2:21:42, taking more than five minutes off her previous best of 2:27:03.

That moved her to number five on the all-time US list, and left her just 23 seconds behind runner-up Ruti Aga. The race was won by Ethiopia’s Birhane Dibaba in 2:19:51. Cragg had run with the leading women up until 30K, at which point she was still on 2:20 pace, and though she couldn’t match Dibaba in the closing miles, she showed immense resolve to fight to the finish in third, rewarded with a place among the greats of American marathoning.

US women’s all-time list (via
2:19:36 Deena Kastor 2006 London
2:20:57 Jordan Hasay 2017 Chicago
2:21:14 Shalane Flanagan 2014 Berlin
2:21:21 Joan Benoit Samuelson 1985 Chicago
2:21:42 Amy Cragg 2018 Tokyo

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Monday, February 19, 2018

Silver lining for Quigley as Birmingham beckons

Colleen Quigley made her fourth US team over the weekend by finishing second in the women’s 1500m at the USATF Indoor Championships in Albuquerque.

The 25-year-old led into the home stretch but was caught late by Shelby Houlihan, her Bowerman Track Club teammate.

“I really thought I could win out there today, and that would be obviously a big deal for me,” Quigley told Letsrun. I haven’t won a national championship yet, indoor or outdoor. So I thought this might be a really good opportunity for me. A few major players in the 1500 weren’t here tonight. And so I was like, this could be a little opening for a steeplechaser to come in and show some wheels. But Shelby’s just — she’s so fast.”

Elsehere Henry Wynne finished a fine fifth in the men’s 1500m final, the Brooks athlete coming home in 3:43.71, less than a second away from making the US team for world indoors.

In the men’s 3000m final on Saturday, Izaic Yorks came home eighth in 8:04.68, a race won by Paul Chelimo in 7:57.88.

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Saturday, February 3, 2018

Day of glory for Infeld and Quigley

It was an unforgettable day for the Kimbia crew at various locations around the country, with Emily Infeld [above, pic via @visit_tally) and Colleen Quigley turning in star performances to take respective victories at the USATF Cross Country Championships and Millrose Games.

Infeld scored her first ever USATF title in memorable fashion, the Bowerman Track Club athlete among a group of seven that broke away 3K into the 10K race. Coming into the final kilometer it was just Infeld and Molly Seidel at the front, but Infeld found something extra entering the finishing straight and pulled away for an emotional victory.

“The competition is fabulous and each year it gets better and better,” she said. “I feel super-excited and lucky, I felt on the cusp of it a lot so it’s really nice to finally win one.” Her teammate Courtney Frerichs also had a strong run, coming home fourth and just shy of the medals.

Evan Jager, meanwhile, missed out on a medal by just one tenth of a second in the men’s 10K race, the Olympic steeplechase silver medalist coming home fourth in 29:31.5, just behind Stanley Kebenei (29:31.4). The race was won by Leonard Korir in 29:16.7 ahead of Galen Rupp in 29:17.9. MJ Erb finished an impressive ninth in 29:42.3.

Later in the day, Colleen Quigley (above, photo: @armoryNYC) scored a memorable win at the Millrose Games in New York, the Bowerman Track Club athlete holding off teammate Kate Grace to edge victory in the Wanamaker mile in 4:30.05. Ireland’s Ciara Mageean finished third. “I’m really proud of myself for being brave,” said Quigley. “This was my first time here and I didn’t let that distract me.”

At the Camel City Elite races in Winston-Salen, North Carolina, Izaic Yorks finished an impressive second in the men’s 3000m to Olympic 5000m silver medallist Paul Chelimo. Yorks clocked 7:53.54, not far behind Chelimo’s winning time of 7:52.88. In the men’s mile, Henry Wynne finished third in 3:58.80, a race won by Edward Cheserek in 3:53.85.

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