The Global Telegraph is published 12 times a year
Run The Planet.
Luis E. Arribas
Hélio A. Fontes
O. Atakan Tekin
All correspondence and suggestions are welcome. Unsolicited articles will be considered. To contribute to "The Global Telegraph" or reproduce its content please contact us via e-mail. The next issue will close the last day of this month. © by Run The Planet Inc.
• CANADA / Two world records in Toronto
What a day of excitement in Toronto! The sun shone, the bands played along the course, 6,000 runners from 18 countries came to run, more than $125,000 was raised for 32 charities, Lyubov Morgunova of Russia set a new women's record of 2:36.20 on the flat scenic Lakeshore route, and not one, but two new world records were set at the "Scotiabank Toronto Waterfront Marathon" on September 29. Ninety-two year old Fauja Singh from England shattered his previous world mark of 6:11 set at the "London marathon" in April, with a new world record for 90+, of 5:40.04; while 72-year-old Ed Whitlock from Canada, became the first 70+ runner on the planet to go under three hours in 2:59:10. Several thousand spectators lined the last kilometer of the course. And the roar was huge as the nonagenarian Singh crossed the line: "I feel great. My ambition was to knock a minute or two off my record, or get under six hours. I never expected a time like this" exclaimed Singh after his record finish. Singh attributes his success to a healthy diet, including his favourite ginger curry, daily meditation for relaxation at his local Sikh temple, warm baths, and ten miles a day in training. With his face cut and scraped from a fall he took in training earlier in the week, Whitlock showed instead every sign of the enormous physical effort to establish his remarkable record, his face grimacing with pain as he leaned to the left and dragged himself down the final straightaway. The crowd were on their feet as the seconds ticked by, and he made it home with just fifty seconds to spare after failing by only 24 seconds in his previous attempt on the "sub-3, over 70" barrier in May 2001 (3:00.24!). "I couldn't have gone much further. I had a real tough time doing the last 200 metres" said Whitlock. Much appreciation was also shown to local club runners Mike Bedley and Gary Kapitan who ran, respectively, alongside Whitlock and Singh. Up front, Kenyan Joseph Ndiritu continued his domination on the Canadian roads. He comfortably took the men's race in 2:17.50 from up-and-coming young Canadian Jim Finlayson (2:20.45). On the women's side, promising young Canadian, Nicole Stevenson went for broke and an Olympic qualifying standard (2:32). She hit halfway at exactly 1:16, with a 40 second lead on Morgunova. The inexperienced Canadian then paid the price for her courage as she faded hard. She came home in 1:26, as the veteran Russian (a two-time winner and course-record holder at Honolulu with a personal record of 2:26) cruised in for the victory in 2:36.20. It was a remarkable day for running in Toronto, and consensus was widespread that the Waterfront event signaled the return of top-quality, marathon excitement to the city.
• BRAZIL / Record field at Pão de Açúcar Marathon Relay
The eleventh edition of the "Pão de Açúcar Marathon relay", held in the city of São Paulo, had the record field of more than 25,000 runners. The race had a thrilling end when Vanderlei Cordeiro de Lima (Pão de Açúcar/BM&F 8 runners team), that started the last leg 1.30 minutes behind the Cruzeiro team, passed Eraldo Teixeira (Cruzeiro 8 runners team) just a few meters from the finish line to win with time of 2:05.42. Source: www.copacabanarunners.net
• BELGIUM / Brussels City Run half marathon
On September 28 in Belgium, the "Brussels City Run" half marathon was won by Lambert Ndayikeza in 64:13, with Stefaan Van Den Broek second in 64:31 and Ronny Ligneel third in 65:11. The accompanying "Ladies Run" (4.4 kilometers) had Veerle Van Linden first in 14:12, Kim Offergeld second in 14:23, and Corinne Debaets third in 14:38. Reprinted with permission from "Running Stats" (www.runningstats.com)
• FRANCE / Paris to Versailles
On September 28 in France, a massive 19,760 finished the dash from Paris to Versailles (16.3 kilometers). Francis Komu (Kenia) got the men's win in 48:33, with Isaac Macharia (Kenia) second in 48:48, Wilson Omwoyo (Kenia) third in 49:00, John Kyalo (Kenia) fourth in 49:06 and Saïd Berioui (Morocco) fifth in 49:26. Margaret Maury won the women's division in 55:19, with Ionelia Vasile (Romania) second in 56:29, Rakyia Maraoui third in 56:51, Martha Komu (Kenia) fourth in 57:07 and Nekhorosh (Ukraine) fifth in 57:14. Reprinted with permission from "Running Stats" (www.runningstats.com)
• AUSTRALIA / Closing the Sydney Harbour Bridge
The Sydney Marathon Festival, incorporating the "Sydney Marathon", the half marathon and the "10k Bridge Run", is an annual celebration of the Sydney 2000 Games. It is the only community road race that closes the Sydney Harbour Bridge with the races all crossing the world famous landmark. Junior Tanzanian runners Oswald Revelian, 21, and Tausi Jumi, 20, have raced to glory in their Australian running debuts taking men's and women's line honours in this year's "Sydney Marathon" on Sunday September 14. Paul Arthur and Helen Verity Tolhurst were the first Australians across the line, both finishing in second place behind the Tanzanians to claim the Australian Marathon Championship titles. In the half marathon, mother-of-two Jenny Wickham, made a sensational return to running, winning the women's race after recovering from serious injuries suffered in a car accident earlier this year. More than 12,500 people took part in the Sydney Marathon Festival, also featuring the inaugural "Kids 2k Run for Health" for under-12's, at Sydney Olympic Park, which was led by Olympian and Australian 800 meter champion Tamsyn Lewis. "Sport should be all about fun and participation and this what the kids run today was all about" she said. These are the results: (men marathon) Oswald Revelian 2:26.03, Paul Arthur 2:31.28, Jeremy Horne 2:33.27; (women marathon) Tausi Jumi 2:46.25, Helen Verity Tolhurst 2:58.58, Karen Ryan 3:05.59; (men half marathon) Damon Harris 1:07.09, Dickson Marwa 1:09.59, Dean Degan 1:11.15; (women half marathon) Jenny Wickham 1:26.13, Dawn Tiller 1:27.37, Belinda Halloran 1:27.39; (men 10k) Scott Wescott 29.49, Russell Dessaix-Chin 30.26, Erwin McRae 30.36; (women 10k) Kate Seibold-Crosbie 34.37, Angela Sheehan 35.04, Kim Tunnell 36.25; (men 10k wheelchair) Paul Nunnari 23.31, Grant Buckley 24.34, Patrick Baker 24.45; (women 10k wheelchair) Yen Tran 39.02. • AUSTRALIA / Study in asthma in athletes
Are you 18-35 years old and do you actively train? Whether you are symptom-free or you get short of breath following exercise, you may be interested in participating in a research to improve the understanding of the mechanism of asthma in athletes. The researchers, based in the Department of Respiratory Medicine at Royal Price Alfred Hospital of Sydney, are undertaking a study in asthma in athletes. Many athletes complain about respiratory symptoms, such as cough, breathlessness, chest tightness and/or wheeze, which may impede their performance. With the right diagnosis and the right treatment, they should be able to perform at high level. However, it is often difficult for medical doctors to determine if these athletes have asthma or not, and if so, if they require any treatment. All volunteers must be between 18 and 35 years old, and must train at least 8-10 hours per week in endurance activities. Both healthy volunteers and volunteers who have respiratory symptoms and/or asthma are needed. There will be no charge for participants and they will be reimbursed for their time and travel expenses. In addition, this will be an opportunity for participants to receive some information about their lung function. Additional information can be obtained contacting Dr. Kippelen or Dr. Brannan by phone (02-9515-6121) or e-mail (firstname.lastname@example.org).
• STING HELPS UNITE RUNNERS WORLDWIDE
Rocker and former school track star Sting praised the event "World Run Day" being held November 9, 2003. The worldwide event asks runners to run either individually or in groups within their own cities, and also make a donation directly to their own favorite charity. Registration for American participants in nearly 300 cities started on October 2, Sting's birthday, thru both active.com and runday.com websites. Australian registration has already started thru ausrun.com.au. More registration sites will soon follow for Europe, South Africa and other international regions. Sting is the first major rock star to endorse this global event. Among many group events this year, the "World Run Day" London event will benefit the Rainforest Foundation Uk, founded by Sting and wife Trudie Styler. Commenting about the "World Run Day" concept, the celebrity couple stated: "It is a great way for people around the world to come together and raise money for charity". Group events are also slated for Sydney, London, Glasgow, Johannesburg, Houston, Philadelphia, and several others. Runners are encouraged to establish small group runs in their own towns to help support the day. "World Run Day" has been proclaimed as an International Day of Running & Charity. The one-day worldwide running event was started in 1999 by an enthusiastic Long Island runner. All registrants receive a colorful event T-shirt and will have their results posted on the event website after November 9. For more information, contact Bill McDermott of www.runday.com at +1 (516) 859-3000.
LORNAH KIPLAGAT: I WANT TO BE THE BEST
An interview by Paul Grech
It has been described as one of the most entertaining 10,000 meter races in the history of the event. The women's 10,000 meter was a great way to round off the first day of the World Championships, a great advert for an event that is often considered to be tedious and boring. Four athletes stood grouped together up till the final fifty metres, alternating the leadership of the race between them with each one egging on the others to keep up their pace and rhythm. In the end, it was a pity that one of the four had to stay out of the medal zone.
That fourth athlete was Lornah Kiplagat, "Of course [I will try to get] the best possible result. I am going for a place on the podium and I will fight for it," she said before the start of the championships. "If it doesn't work, too bad. It is my first season on the track, my first World Championships, my second 10,000 meter ever so I can't expect too much".
And indeed, it wasn't to be. In those final fifty metres, Berhane Adere, Werknesch Kidane and Yinglie Sun had that little bit more in reserve and this allowed them to claim the medals. A disappointment for the long distance runner who was representing Holland for the first time - and indeed her finishing time of 30:32.03 set a new Dutch record - but one that she'll take into her stride just as she has done with every other challenge.
Growing up in a country - Kenya - where most of the attention is devoted to men, her strength of character saw her drop her studies in order to embark on what eventually was to prove to be a successful athletics career.
The world record holder over the ten-mile distance - not to mention a winner of some of the major marathons across the globe - Kiplagat is now undoubtedly one of the major stars of her sport. And she is determined to make the most of her status. Contrary to many other athletes, however, this doesn't mean an interest to get better sponsorship deals but the willingness to get involved in projects that actually make their mark on society.
The best example is the High Altitude Training Centre that Kiplagat opened last year in Iten, Kenya. That European athletes will also use this training centre is secondary to the fact that it will help female Kenyan runners who often have to struggle against social and cultural barriers.
She spoke to Paul Grech about her career so far, what brought about the decision to start representing Holland and why getting involved in projects that help the community is so important for her.
When you were growing up, was it always your dream to become a runner? Was it a priority?
I grew up in Kabiemit in the Rift Valley, Kenya. I did athletics in school but never thought about having a running career because I wanted to become a doctor. My priority was to study so that I could study medicine later on. After high school I found out I was good [at running] and developed it instead of going to University. At the time, I already had a scholarship for India for Medicine.
For young male Kenyans, the hero was probably Kip Keino. Who did you and other young female athletes look up to?
My hero was Susan Sirma, the first African woman to win a medal in the World Championships. She is a relative and helped me to become a professional runner.
Did your family easily accept your decision to become a runner? And was it easy to find training opportunities? In short, what sort of difficulties did you have to overcome to become a runner?
They didn't accept because they wanted me to study. Only when I became really good they accepted it. For a woman it was very hard to find training facilities and it was a very tough time for me. Finding a place to sleep when you go to races, getting into races... many difficulties. That's the main reason I started the Camp in Iten, so that young girls don't have to go through the same thing.
Are women runners given the same importance as men in Kenya? Why?
Men are the most important and this has always been like that. This is just a culture thing: men are important, women are not. Because of the successes of Catherine Ndereba, Joyce Chepchumba and me this is now changing. We also express ourselves better to the press in Kenya so that people understand that things have to change.
Kenyans dominate distance running. What is the secret behind this success? Is it the ability to know when and how much to rest, as Moses Kiptanui suggests?
There is no secret at all. We always say it is the two A's: Altitude and Attitude. Kenyans used to work extremely hard and focus on training and rest a lot. They live at high altitude so this helps. However, their dominance is getting less because of poor coaching, no structure and luxury. You see that other countries like Ethiopia and Morocco are coming up.
You have decided to run for Holland. How difficult was it for you to take that decision? And why did you decide to do so?
This decision was not difficult at all because I am married to a Dutch so I belong in Holland. The Federation in Kenya has never done anything for me and never invited me for any Championship so why should I not change? Now I just have to run the IAAF qualification standard and I am in the team. The Dutch federation is very supportive and all these things give peace in the mind so that you can perform better.
How do you judge your season so far?
The season is going on well. I have made the decision to change my training schedule completely and focus more on the track so that cost some time. However, I ran pretty well although I know I'm not there yet, I still need another year.
With the withdrawal of Paula Radcliffe, the distance running events were portrayed as being an anti-climax before they even started. Does this frustrate you?
I think this is complete nonsense. I was extremely disappointed that Paula can't run but it also means that she probably trained too hard, went too fast in London or whatever. People who are not competing have no right. I really feel sorry for Paula because she is a great athlete and she indeed would have performed very well. I always want to compete with the best but if they are injured it is too bad. Paula never performed well on the track in big championships so what's the problem? Of course she is a better athlete now but I am sure she will be back in Athens and we will make it a great race. I just hope she will be soon ok again.
Apart from competitive running, you're also working very hard to promote your High Altitude Centre. First of all, when did you first think of setting up such a centre? How difficult has it been to get so far?
I started thinking on it already in 1995 when I started running and had so many difficulties. It is now not difficult at all because we have very good people taking care of the camp. We have 12 people full time working and they do a great job so I don't have to worry that much. Only out of the season am I involved a lot but not right now.
What sort of facilities do you offer? And what has been the response - particularly from European athletes - so far?
We have 18 double rooms with hot water, shower and toilet, we have a restaurant with two cooks, we have a 400 meter track and hundreds of miles with dirt roads. The reactions are unbelievable, 99% is coming back in a great shape and they improved a lot. The complete Dutch National team is training at the HATC and they did very well this season. Also marathoners improved a lot. Luc Krotwaar went from 2:12 to 2:10.
It has been widely publicised that you are using the HATC to offer more opportunities to young Kenyan athletes, particularly female athletes. In what way are you helping them and why do you feel this is so important?
We give them a room, we give them coaching, we feed them, we educate them and we give them a future. It's way beyond only running. We make them to understand that being a woman doesn't mean you have no rights. We teach them how to use computers, we teach them how to talk to the media, etc. I think this is extremely important and we already see a difference in attitude.
What are the goals that you have set for the centre and the athletes involved in the project? Are you looking for any particular results?
We want to have three athletes in the Olympics in Athens next year. We are working very hard and I do think we have some good chances.
You have started training a group of beginners in Puerto Rico. How did this come about and what does it involve?
This came because of some friends from the "Primera Hora", the national newspaper in Puerto Rico. They were overweight and we told them to start running and made a deal that they would do the World Best 10K in February. We started with 6 people but it became at the end a group of over 500 people. They all ran in the race and most of them finished. They were very happy and many people told us we gave them a new life. Every week we had a column in the paper with training schedule, nutrition tips, equipment tips, injury prevention, etc. Lots of work but it gave a great feeling to see them running last February. Now they are in training for the "New York City Marathon"!
It is evidently very important for you to use sport to help society. However, how useful can sport and what do you think can be achieved through sport?
Sport is extremely important because it brings people together. If you are a CEO or collecting garbage, you all look the same in your running outfit. Sport is the perfect way to communicate and it is a very powerful tool. People who train feel better, look better and can handle more stress. We are convinced that through the sport we can create a better world.
Finally, what aims and goals do you have for the future?
First of all to stay as happy and healthy as I am right now. Secondly, I want to extend our support to the people in Kenya and other East African countries and finally: I want to become the best runner in the world.
More information about Lornah Kiplagat and the HATC can be found at www.lornah.com. This piece originally appeared on www.time-to-run.com. Any comments can be sent to email@example.com.
World Wide Resource for Runners Copyright © 2010 Demand Media, Inc.