Saturday, January 27, 2018

Flanagan flies to fast 3000m in Seattle

Shalane Flanagan had another impressive showing at the UW Invitational in Seattle, Washington on Saturday afternoon, the 36-year clocking a season’s best of 8:43.28 to finish second in the women’s 3000m behind Dutch middle distance star Sifan Hassan, the reigning world indoor 1500m champion.

Flanagan has recently begun preparations for the Boston Marathon in April, where she will seek to win her first title at the race to add to her historic victory in New York last November. A fortnight ago she opened her 2018 campaign with an 8:55.11 clocking for 3000m to win in Seattle, and today she carved 12 seconds off that time, something that will leave the Bowerman Track Club athlete high on confidence as she returns to heavy mileage ahead of Boston. Both Hassan’s time of 8:34.45 and Flanagan’s were under the previous meeting record.

Also in action in Seattle was Lopez Lomong, who finished fifth in the men’s mile in 3:59.75. That carved more than four seconds off his previous season’s best, which he ran in Seattle in his opener a fortnight ago.


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Tuesday, January 16, 2018

Flanagan off to a fast start in 2018

Shalane Flanagan has started her year as she ended the last – with victory. The 36-year-old took the win in an indoor 3000m race in Seattle, Washington on Sunday, her first outing of the 2018 campaign and her first race since taking a memorable victory at the New York City Marathon in November.

Flanagan, 36, cruised to victory in 8:55.11 over Mel Lawrence (8:57.83) and Amy Eloise-Neale (9:01.96).

“I wouldn’t say my track confidence is super-high,” she told FloTrack afterwards. “Two months ago I was running some great track workouts but obviously you have to let the body rest. I’m more of a racer than a trainer so I wanted to get out here, put on the bib and get a hard effort.”

Flanagan is now ramping up her training in preparation for the Boston Marathon in April, where she will be the headline attraction in what is essentially a hometown race for her.

“I definitely feel a little bit at peace in my soul having won a major. If I walked away tomorrow I feel happy as an athlete and a person, but there was still that one lingering tick of the box that I really, really wanted and I just couldn’t let that go.

“I felt a little more stressed trying to accommodate requests and training at the same time. I’ve one more week of some fun things ahead of me then it’s all about the training. I’m looking forward to it.”

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Tuesday, December 12, 2017

Flanagan set to return to Boston Marathon

Shalane Flanagan
has chosen to hold off on retirement as she bids to win the Boston Marathon for the first time, the title sponsor John Hancock announced on Monday.

The 36-year-old took victory at the New York City Marathon last month and afterward, said she was undecided about the future, hinting that it may have been her last race. However, the Marblehead, Massachusetts native will now toe the line once more at her home marathon, which she has completed three times already: finishing fourth, fifth and ninth in 2013, 2014 and 2015 respectively.

She will face a strong line-up of fellow Americans, with Jordan Hasay, Desi Linden, Molly Huddle and Deena Kastor all in opposition, along with last year’s winner, Edna Kiplagat of Kenya.

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Monday, November 6, 2017

Flanagan: “It was an incredible epic day”

Less than 24 hours after her biggest moment, Shalane Flanagan was back at the scene of her triumph this morning, speaking to the media alongside the New York City Marathon in Central Park, and the 36-year-old reflected on the race, her future plans and what it all meant to her.

“I didn’t know I was that far ahead,” she said of the closing minutes. “I was running scared the last two miles. At the very end I could sense no one was there so I could finally enjoy the moment.”

 Spurred on to victory by a vocal crowd, Flanagan made sure to send a message back to the thousands of supporters today:

“Thank you so much for creating at atmosphere that allows us athletes to perform to the best of our ability. Yesterday in those final miles I was thinking of the heartache New Yorkers endured in the past week, of Meb and his final marathon, trying to honor all the people who have given time to me. It was an incredible epic day and I was so grateful I could be a part of history.”

Flanagan was also asked whether she will continue competing, but said she had not made any decision just yet.

“I’ve been at this running thing for a long time at a professional level and I have other things in my life I’m interested in that I want to dedicate time to,” she said. “I think I can add to the running community in different capacities. When you’ve achieved something that’s just epic, everything you wanted and it’s so hard to top, I’m the sort of person who’s like:  if it’s already been done and I can’t top it, why continue when I can maybe do something else to contribute?

Her celebrations last night saw her unable to sleep, and Flanagan has made multiple appearances today on some of the nation’s biggest TV shows.

“I’m trying to live in the present moment, because these are the moments you dream of,” she said. “I’m trying to live right now,” she said. “I did’t sleep last night. I tried, but it wasn’t happening. At 3am I was eating pizza.”

Flanagan also stressed that despite it being a personal triumph, she was proud to share it with her fellow Americans.

“I feel like it’s an American victory as much as mine because it’s been 40 years,” she said.

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Sunday, November 5, 2017

Flanagan flies to victory in New York

Shalane Flanagan ended a 40-year drought for American women at the TCS New York City Marathon today, the 36-year-old claiming an historic victory in 2:26:53 to defeat the world’s best marathoner: Mary Keitany.

After a slow early pace, the Nike Bowerman Track Club athlete bided her time in the pack as a large group passed halfway in 1:16:18. Only in the final three miles did Flanagan make her move, surging to the front and dropping a 5:08 mile to escape from Keitany and Mamitu Daska of Ethiopia.

From there she never let up, extending her advantage all the way to the finish to claim her first victory in an Abbott World Marathon Major, which proved all the sweeter after being forced to withdraw from Boston earlier this  year with injury.

“About nine months ago I was heartbroken about not getting to race in Boston and it hurt quite a bit,” said Flanagan, “but I kept telling myself there’d be delayed gratification and a moment down the road that made up for it.

“I’ve dreamed of a moment like this since I was a little girl. It means a lot to me, to my family, and hopefully inspires the next generation of American women to be patient. It took me seven years to do this so a lot of work went into this moment.”

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