Friday, June 10, 2011

Keitany Second in Dream Mile, Stands Second in Diamond Race

Fresh off an impressive win at the Pre Classic in the Bowerman Mile, Haron Keitany took to Oslo to take on many of the same competitors, plus additional talents such as Nixon Chepseba, Augustine Choge, and the man who defeated Keitany in Hengelo, Mohammed Shaween. Keitany came home second this time, with reigning Olympic Gold Medalist Asbel Kiprop getting the win by 0.16 over the Land Cruiser. Keitany ran 3:51.02 and was almost three-tenths clear of third.

At Pre, it was hard not to admire Kiprop’s special gold-medalist racing spikes — black with gold trim, and a sheen that make them look almost like leather — and after the race, Keitany said how much he would like to have a pair of those for himself. The two Diamond Race points he picked up in Norway now put him in second on the season, with six total… just one behind Kiprop. Four mile or 1500m competitions remain this year, giving Keitany a chance to lay claim to the “golden spike” position atop the whole world in his discipline. And, as he said after winning in Eugene, “Perhaps in Korea.”

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Monday, June 6, 2011

Haron Keitany Claims Victory in Pre Classic Bowerman Mile

The great mile races around the world have a special cachet in the sport, thanks to the superstars who have won them in the past, and the difficulty in winning them in the present. Like the Bislett Games Dream Mile, The Bowerman Mile at the Prefontaine Classic has earned a sterling reputation thanks to a history that features wins by Olympic Gold Medalists and World Record holders like Noah Ngeny, Daniel Komen, Hicham El Guerrouj, and Asbel Kiprop — now The “One and Only Land Cruiser,” Haron Keitany, joins those ranks with an impressive win on Saturday. Read the full article

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Saturday, June 4, 2011

Day One of Pre Sees Solid Flanagan, Frustrated Solinsky

On Day One of the Prefontaine Classic, Shalane Flanagan turned in the best performance of any KIMbia athlete, logging a 14:49.68 to place 6th in an absolutely stellar field. At the bell, it looked like Flanagan had a very real shot at the American Record of 14:44.76, but she fought home with a tough 69-point final lap — a circuit featuring what she called “the worst rigging ever.” However, her performance was still good for a World Championships and Olympic “A” standard and the fifth-fastest American clocking ever… and she owns three of the other four. Afterwards, she spoke with and admitted that she was a little disappointed that the early pace was slower than expected and, thanks to the altitude training phase the team is currently in, that she had “limited speed” to bring into the furious finish she knew the slow start had ensured. Meanwhile, Lineth Chepkurui ran 15:15.15 — a numerical anomaly, for sure, but also an agonizing point-one-five outside of the “A” standard in the 5000m. In all likelihood, this race will conclude Lineth’s 2011 campaign, a season that saw impressive wins at Bolder Boulder and Bay to Breakers, and also a return to the track to prepare for a bid to London in 2012. Standout Vivian Cheruiyot won the race.

In the Men’s 10,000m, the Hayward Field crowd was treated to the best 10,000m field ever assembled in the United States… and, it turns out, arguably in the whole of history. Read the full article

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Friday, June 3, 2011

KIMbia Prepared for Eventful Pre Classic on Friday and Saturday

A large complement of KIMbia athletes will be hitting the track at Hayward Field Friday and Saturday to compete in the Prefontaine Classic, the first US stop on the Diamond League circuit. Friday will feature Shalane Flanagan and Lineth Chepkurui in a stacked women’s 5000m, and Chris Solinsky in a hot 10,000m (along with John Kemboi). How hot? Well, the requested pace is 13:18 at 5k. The field includes three World Champions, a World Record holder, and a World & Olympic Silver medalist (many times over), among many, many others. (Tim Nelson will also be appearing as a pace-setter.)

Saturday, Evan Jager kicks things off for us by facing an International Mile field that could almost stand alone as an “A” heat at many meets, with names like Gregson, Yego, and Mansoor Ali set to start. Later, Matt Tegenkamp and Andrew Bumbalough take on Tariku Bekele, Bernard Lagat, Eliud Kipchoge, and Isaiah Koech in the seldom-run Two-Mile. It was at this meet, though, that Tegenkamp set the current American Record at the distance, and Bumbalough — now a sub 13:20 man — is clearly a different athlete than the guy who graduated Georgetown. Lastly, Haron Keitany will toe the line in the final event of the meet, the Bowerman Mile… the toughest mile to win that exists on US soil.

With fields this good, all of our athletes will face challenges — but with those challenges come great opportunities. It should be a great 48-hours of athletics! Watch a live stream of the 10,000m at 11:40 EST on Friday, and the rest of the meet Saturday on NBC, beginning at 2:30pm EST!

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