Wednesday, July 12, 2017

Infeld and Frerichs impress in Lucerne

London-bound athletes Emily Infeld and Courtney Frerichs turned in a pair of impressive performances in Lucerne on Tuesday night (11) as they continue their preparations for the IAAF World Championships, which get under way on 4 August.

Competing in a loaded 3000m field, Infeld clocked a season’s best of 8:55.41 to finish fifth, while Frerichs came home just moments later in sixth, her time of 8:56.99 a lifetime best.

The race was won by Ethiopia’s Azmera Gebru in 8:52.63, with Kenya’s Caroline Kipkirui second in 8:53.36 and Jamaica’s Aisha Praught-Leer third in 8:53.43.

Frerichs, who finished 11th in the Olympic final in the 3000m steeplechase last year, has been in outstanding form this summer, the 24-year-old lowering her lifetime best to 9:19.09 at the Prefontaine Classic in Eugene. She booked her place in London by finishing second in the US Championships in Sacramento last month and will join Emma Coburn and fellow Kimbia athlete Colleen Quigley on the US team for the 3000m steeplechase next month.

Infeld, meanwhile, has raced sparingly this season but had made it count every time she takes to the track. The 27-year-old Kimbia athlete, a member of the Nike Bowerman Track Club, booked her spot on the US team when finishing second in the 10,000m at the national championships in Sacramento last month in 31:22.67. The 2015 world bronze medallist over 10,000m will next be in action in Heusden, Belgium, on 22 July, where she will hope to fine-tune her preparations for another tilt at the medal rostrum in London.

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Sunday, June 4, 2017

Izaic Yorks Wins Furman Elite 1500

Izaic Yorks got his first win as a pro Saturday night at the Furman Elite Invitational in Greenville, South Carolina. Izaic ran 3:38.01 in the meet’s elite 1500 meters to lead the first five finishers under 3:39.0, the qualifying standard for this month’s USATF outdoor championships.

The win provided further evidence that Izaic is rounding into shape at the right time in his first full season as a professional athlete. Last month he set an 800-meter personal best of 1:47.59. Saturday’s win was just a quarter-second off his 1500 PR.

In the women’s elite 1500 at Furman, Nicole Sifuentes placed 4th in 4:06.24. The race was won by Marta Pen Freitas in 4:05.71.

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Saturday, May 27, 2017

Courtney Frerichs Sets Steeple PR at Prefontaine Meet

Start the month with the proverbial rust buster (and food poisoning), end it setting a personal best.

That’s how May went for Courtney Frerichs, who took 1 second off her steeplechase PR at the Prefontaine Classic on Friday, three weeks after opening her season in Doha, Qatar. That rust buster was a 9:45.91 steeple on May 5, marred by contracting food poisoning while traveling. Last night, she ran 9:19.09, a solid improvement over the 9:20.92 she ran on the same track to place second in the Olympic Trials last June.

Courtney was fifth in a race won by Kenyan Celliphine Chespol in an under-20 world record of 8:58.78.

Courtney’s next steeple will be at the USATF championships in Sacramento, California, which will select the team for the world championships, which begin on August 4 in London. Qualifying heats of the steeple in Sacramento will be run on June 22.

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Friday, May 5, 2017

Bannister Anniversary Day: The Perfect Time to Watch “Everest on the Track”

May 6, 1954 will always be a landmark date in athletic history. That’s when Roger Bannister did what was said to be impossible and became the first person to break 4:00 for the mile.

But as our documentary “Bannister: Everest on the Track” details, that first sub-4:00 was much more than just sporting news. Like the conquest of Mt. Everest, it spoke to humanity’s need to challenge supposedly insurmountable barriers. And like the summiting of Everest, Bannister’s epic run inspired a world still reeling from World War II that the future could be better than the past.

While it’s always a good time to watch “Everest on the Track,” this Saturday, the anniversary of that first sub-4:00, should be considered appointment viewing.

Our friends at Tracksmith are making the day even more special. They’re providing a free download code for “Everest on the Track” for the first 100 orders of their Bannister-inspired White Collection of singlets, shorts and tops.

Indiewire named “Bannister: Everest on the Track” one of the best sports documentaries ever made, putting it in such company as “Hoop Dreams,” “When We Were Kings” and “The Endless Summer.”

Learn more about the film here, and order it here or here.

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Wednesday, December 14, 2016

Courtney Frerichs: 5 Things That Are Different Now That I’m a Pro

What a difference a year makes! At this time last year I was a student-athlete at the University of New Mexico, thinking about grades and winter break as much as training and racing. Now I’m a full-time professional runner in Portland, Oregon. Here are five ways my life is different these days.—Courtney Frerichs

1. I’ll start with the most obvious one: no more school! After having been in school since age 5 and being a student-athlete in the NCAA for the last five years, I can finally say I am done with classes! (Well, at least for a few years.) I have so much more free time now, which has definitely been a change. I’m still looking for a good hobby to fill my time when I’m not running.

2. New city! Making the move to Portland was a big one for me. My first four years of college at the University of Missouri-Kansas City, I was a short drive away from home. I moved a little farther away for my fifth year, but the University of New Mexico was still a one-day drive home if needed. While I miss my family a lot, I have enjoyed exploring my new city, and really enjoy what the Pacific Northwest has to offer. It definitely doesn’t hurt that Portland is known for coffee shops. I have enjoyed seeing new parts of the city while trying new coffee shops.

3. The professional schedule is quite a bit different. In college, my big competition seasons were the fall and the spring. Now, the main racing season is during the summer, with the long base training phase in the fall. This last fall I found myself very antsy because I was so used to racing during this time. I’m definitely looking forward to 2017 coming because that means indoor and cross country racing will finally be here!

4. Altitude trips! In college, I spent my first four years training full-time at sea level, and then my fifth year entirely at altitude. While I found the year at altitude to be very beneficial, I am excited to have specifically timed altitude trips, because always being at altitude did get difficult mentally sometimes, because you can’t run some of your workouts as fast. Team altitude trips are also a blast and the benefits from training are great.

5. New team and coach! One of the biggest changes so far has been changing coaches and teams. It has been one of the most exciting changes! As soon as I visited with Jerry Schumacher, Pascal Dobert and the BTC Babes, I knew it was where I wanted to continue my career. Change can be difficult and training has been hard, but I am loving every second of it. I feel so lucky to be working with the best group I could ask for!

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