EME News January 20th, by Alfons Juck, note by Kevin Mangan
Monday, 20 January 2014 20:51

EME News January 20th, by Alfons Juck, note by Kevin Mangan

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Usain Bolt has confirmed he will run at the Meeting Areva aka the Paris Diamond League meeting. I was fortunate enough to be amongst the 50,000 people that the world's fastest man put on a show for. He ran 19.73, a very fast time, the fastest ever for the meet. But what really made Bolt's performance a show was his showmanship. He could control the Parisian crowd in a way only French pole vault hero Renaud Lavillenie could come close to. Bolt's persona was much grander than his 19.73 meet record. People come to see Bolt. People that don't know anything about Track & Field know the speed of Usain Bolt. If you want to see a living legend perform in front of what could be the biggest audience of any track meet in the world in 2014, go to the Stade de France on July 5th. Last year I got to witness both the pageantry and the speed for the first time, and it was a sight to behold. Any true track fan needs to see Usain Bolt run, in person. The Stade de France provides one of the best settings to watch Mr Bolt: a raucous and large crowd that knows a thing or two about Track & Field in one of the nicest stadiums in the world. The Stade de France provided the best atmosphere I have ever seen for a track meet. If you live in Paris, go to the meet. If you live in Western Europe, go to the meet. If you live on another continent, go the meet, and you will see the best our sport has to offer.

EME NEWS (JAN 20, 2014)

PARIS (FRA): The French Athletics Federation has announced that IAAF World Athlete of the Year Usain Bolt will return to the Meeting Areva at the Stade de France on July 5 of this year. The 27 year old Jamaican holds both the 100m and 200m meeting records, with 9.79 in 2009, and 19.73 in 2013. The 2014 meeting will feature a Diamond League 100m and Bolt should compete in this event. Meet Director Lawrence Boquillet said, “He (Bolt) likes to come here for two reasons. First it is the city he loves, and then also the atmosphere that is created in the Stade de France. In his eyes, Paris is unique and he wanted to come.” He also added that the quality of the rest of the athletes would not be diminished by Bolt’s inclusion in the meet, “It's very simple to work with Bolt since there is no negotiation as he always asks the same. As we are now working with the French federation, which indicates a better sharing of marketing rights, I would say that the envelope for other athletes has increased compared to last year.” The next big names for the meet will be announced in the Spring. Informs leparisien.fr. It is his third meet of 2014 confirmed after Malmo (Aug 5) and Ostrava (Jun 17).

KINGSTON (JAM): World record holder Usain Bolt delivered the lesson at Racers Track Club Thanksgiving Service, held at the Webster Memorial Church. Bolt's lesson was taken from John 1:29-42 (New International Version) while President and head coach Glen Mills brought greetings on behalf of the club. Bolt tweeted after service, "Great church service this morning with my Racers Family..Praying for a rewarding season and giving thanks #blessed" Meanwhile, Racers said, "members of the congregation received us warmly and chatted with us after the service." Racers Track Club is the home of several world class athletes - among them Usain Bolt, Yohan Blake, Kemar Bailey-Cole, Michael Frater, Ristananna Tracey, Daniel Bailey, Rosemarie Whyte, Schillonie Calvert, Kerron Stewart, Warren Weir, Melaine Walker, Delano Williams, Edino Steele, Allodin Fothergill and Jazeel Murphy. Informs Track Alerts.

IGLS (AUT): USA Olympic sprinters Lolo Jones and Lauryn Williams have both been officially selected on the USA Bobsleigh squad for the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi, informs NBC. The two Summer Olympians were named as push athletes on the 6 member squad, which was announced in Austria after the World Cup event in Iglis. Olympic 4x100m silver medalist Hanna Marien of Belgium has also guaranteed selection for the Winter Olympics while Craig Pickering of Great Britain and Jana Pittman of Australia will know their fate on Wednesday when their respective national teams are announced. Interesting to see also that Jamaica will be represented in bobsleigh, but no one from them has track background.

VOLGOGRAD (RUS): The 14th Governor’s Cup in Volgograd on January 25 will feature 7 male events and 5 events for females, informs rusathletics.com. Competing will be top high jumpers Andrey Silnov and Aleksey Dmitrik, Rytis Sakalauskas of Lithuania returns to Volgograd having won the 60m in 2012, World University Games 1500m champion Valentin Smirnov and 2013 Russian Indoor 1500m champion Yegor Nikolayev will compete over 1500 m, the on form Kseniya Ryzhova will run the 400 meters, 2011 World medalist Olga Kucherenko competes in the long jump after winning the event last year and will be up against World triple jump silver medalist Yekaterina Koneva.

MOSCOW (RUS): High jump world leader Mariya Kuchina told to All-Sport news agency that she could not even dream of showing so strong result and PB (2m) in her first competition. “It was more than I could hope for. I made a long way to two meters height and felt unbelievable after clearing the bar. I felt so emotional and excited so I refused from further jumps. But now it’s time to keep cool mind and continue my preparation. The full season is still ahead of me,” said the European team champion who turned only 21 six days ago. Kuchina also announced changes in her competitions schedule. “Before national indoors I’ll perform in Czech Republic in Hustopece on February 1 and then most probably at St. Petersburg’s competitions which’ll be like testing and checking event for me.” On January 30 Mariya will take part in Winter Olympic torch relay in Nalchik.

MONDEVILLE (FRA): European sprint star Christophe Lemaitre is scheduled to run the 60 m at the International meet in Mondeville on February 1. His main rivals should be Poland´s Dariusz Kuc, Dutch Brian Mariano, Bulgarian talent Denis Dimitrov and Brits Richard Kilty with Andy Robertson. Russian Anna Shchagina is the women 1500 m favorite, in the rarely contested 400 m hurdles Cuban Yasmani Copello, in men 800 m Kuweit Mohamed Al-Azemi and in the men 3000 m South African Elroy Gelant.


PERTH (AUS): Pole Vault olympic and world winner Steve Hooker (31) was competing in 4x100 m relay during the weekend. "Today a ran a 4x100m relay for Box Hill at interclub, it's probably been a decade since I last ran a relay. So much fun!," he tweeted. His last pole vault competition was last May in Chula Vista where he no-heighted, but last big one was London Games 2012.

DUBAI (UAE): This Friday´s Dubai Marathon is according to the elite runners lists published on the event website totally Ethiopian affair in women race. Headed by Meselech Melkamu, Meseret Hailu and Mamitu Daska there is only Turkish Sultan Haydar and debuting Louise Wiker of Sweden as non-Ethiopians in the list. On the men side headed by Markos Geneti followed by Kenyans Jonathan Maiyo and Laban Korir as per personal bests. There is no European runner in the men list.

LE MANS (FRA): European Cross Country Champion Sophie Duarte admits that she has heavy legs after her winter racing schedule and for this reason opted out of racing Sunday’s Cross Ouest-France, reports ouest-france.fr. “The beginning of the season was long”, she explained. “Reasonably, I need a new breath. I have heavy legs. This is why I do not come to Le Mans," added the 32 year old. Duarte also urged the French Federation to place more emphasis on cross country as she believes that it is a vital part of athletics and a great opportunity for French athletes to win medals.

LEICESTER (GBR): Former 10000m World Champion Liz McColgan has married athletics coach and Olympian John Nuttall, informs dailyrecord.co.uk.

OTTAWA (CAN): Athletics Canada announced that Jared Connaughton has been confirmed for the invitational 200 m at the inaugural AC Indoor Open. He is 200 m Olympic Games semi-finalist and has been a part of five World Championship/Olympic teams. His 2013 season included international victories in Japan and Brazil. The 2014 AC Indoor Open will take place in Montreal, Que., March 14 - 16 at the newly renovated Centre Claude-Robillard.

LEEK (NED): Dutch thrower Rutger Smith is unsure whether he will return to competition in 2014 as he continues his recovery from 2 achilles operations, reports rtvnoord.nl. The 32 year old, who has won global medals in the shot and discus, said, “I feel strong in my upper body. But walking is still very stiff.” The stiffness, he explains, is coming from his calf which is too weak at the moment to be able to throw. Over the next two and a half months he will train in the USA where he will try and get back to full strength.

LISBON (POR): After winning the Manuela Machado half Marathon Dulce Felix traveled to Lisbon where she was honored at the Stadium of Light before the football match between Benfica and Marítimo, informs record.xl.pt. Félix showed her European Cross Country bronze medal to the crowd. The 31 year old is preparing for the London Marathon where she hopes to beat her personal best of 2:25:40 (New York, 2011). “It is a flat marathon and if the preparation goes well I hope to make a good place, "she explains. Felix plans to race the Lisbon Half Marathon in March (where she finished 5th last year), ahead of the London Marathon, and has no plans to compete indoors.

QATAR (UAE): Qatar will host the World Championships in boxing, handball, cycling, gymnastics and squash before it hosts the 2022 FIFA World Cup, and it may yet add the 2019 IAAF World Championships to its list of events, informs insidethegames. According to Khalil Al Jaber, director of the sports affairs department at the Qatar Olympic Committee, Qatar hosted over 41 international events in 2013 and will host around the same amount in 2014. But they are planning to increase this number even further. Al Jaber explained that they are “making decisions to decide what the biggest events in the world are” so that they can bid for them.

GLASGOW (GBR): British Athletics and Scottish Athletics announced the full Scotland team for the Sainsbury’s Glasgow International Match on Saturday 25 January, which will be led by world 4x400m bronze medalist Eilidh Child. Child will captain the first ever Scotland team to participate in the event. The Scottish squad will also feature European U23 bronze medalist Laura Muir in the 800m, World 1500m finalist Chris O’Hare in the 1500, the on form Jamie Bowie in the 400m (last weekend 47.09 PB) and 4x400m and 21 year old Guy Learmonth in the 800m.

MOSCOW (RUS): Long jump Athens Olympic champion and world indoor record holder in triple jump Tatyana Lebedeva will hold master-class for young athletes in Moscow one day before the IAAF indoor permit meeting Russian Winter. During the competitions on February 2 she’ll have official ceremony of her retirement from athletics. “Athlete can go through several Olympic Games but farewell ceremony can be only one and that’s why it’s unique event. Honestly I don’t know what reaction I’ll have in the CSKA arena. Probably I'll cry. But that’s why I like sport as you can show not only your physical abilities but your true emotions as well. I’m proud for my career. But this stage is completed. I have new goals and ideas. Which one? We’ll find out soon” said 37-year-old Russian to rusathletics.com.

ATHLONE (IRL): The Woodie's DIY Athletics Ireland Open Indoor Games is due to take place in AIT International Arena on Sunday, February 2nd. The event will bring together Ireland's leading club athletes and once again there will be a number of international events included on the program. The open games are organised in order to provide an opportunity for Irish athletes to compete against high quality opposition in the top class AIT International Arena.

VIENNA (AUT): the 31st Vienna City Marathon on April 13 reports already more than 30 000 entries. It is still possible to enter until end of January. Last year record entry was 41 326. Informs the marathon website.

SEGUIN (USA): Five-time NCAA Division I All-American and former professional track and field athlete Milton Mallard has been named an assistant coach for women's/men's cross country and track & field at Texas Lutheran University, TLU Director of Athletics Bill Miller announced Tuesday. Mallard worked in the past with Carl Lewis and was involved with athlete recruitment and with athletic meet and sponsorship appearance scheduling. He also assisted Lewis in developing and overseeing projects with the IAAF, USATF and several community-based programs throughout the country.

NASSAU (BAH): World indoor champion and recently also an organizer 400 m runner Chris Brown informed that the 2nd edition of the Chris Brown Bahamas Invitational (CBBI) scheduled for April 12 in Nassau has been cancelled. It is due to preparations being made for the IAAF World Relays and so the stadium will not be available for use. "These disappointing circumstances are beyond my control and I apologize for any inconvenience. It is my hope that you all will support the meet in 2015 as we look to stage a bigger and better event in a newly renovated IAAF Level 1 Certified stadium," said Brown.

BIRMINGHAM (GBR): British pole vault record holder and Olympic Games 5th placer Steven Lewis will not compete in the indoor season. Instead he will focus on the outdoor with European Championships and Commonwealth Games in his mind. His national mark 582 is from 2012.

TOKYO (JPN): After his stage-winning run at the Sunday´s National Men's Ekiden, 2009 World Championships 5000 m runner Yuichiro Ueno announced plans for his marathon debut. "I'm not ready to do it right away, but I plan on doing Tokyo or Lake Biwa next year," he said. Already beginning his transition to the marathon, Ueno will serve as a pacer at the Feb. 2 Beppu-Oita Mainichi Marathon. Informs Brett Larner.


SANTA POLA (ESP, Jan 19): Fast times at the 25th Half Marathon "Vila de Santa Pola". Kenyan Abraham Cherobon clocked 1:01:25 over Franklin Chepkwony 1:01.39 and Joel Kemboi 1:02:07. Fourth Elijah Chelimo 1:02:33. Best Spanish Marc Roig fifth with 1:05:22 PB. Ashefe Bekele from Ethiopia was the best in women category with 1:11:18, second Spanish Esther Hidalgo 1:14:14.

PHOENIX (USA, Jan 19): Kenyan Solomon Kandie won with 2:21:00 the Rock and Roll Arizona Marathon. Amy Cole as best woman clocked 2:49:24.

CARLSBAD (USA, Jan 19): Ethiopian wins at Carlsbad Marathon. Abiyot Endale 2:18:35 and Aregash Abate 2:48:29. Kenyan Stephen Sambu won the half marathon in life-time best 1:02:13.

BERGEN (NOR, Jan 18): Walking record holder Erik Tysse posted fast 11:20.48 at the 3000 m race indoors.

WINSTON SALEM (USA, Jan 19): Sean McLean with 6.67 in the 60 m beat here Barbados Ramon Gittens 6.68 and Calesio Newman 6.73 (but 6.69 in heats). In women 60 m Jessica Young won with 7.30 clearly over Barbara Pierre 7.40. In the hurdles Jamaican London and Moscow participant Shermaine Williams 8.16.

PRAHA (CZE, Jan 18): At regional championships Czech high jump talent Michael Hruba (will be 16 in February) improved to 185 cm.

HAMILTON (BER, Jan 17-19): Kenyan Richard Kessio retained the Marathon title in 2:24:08 in the last event of Bermuda Marathon Weekend. The Women’s Marathon was won by Valentyna Poltavska, of Ukraine 2:56:25 (she was 3rd overall). Jordan Chipangama achieved Zambia success to this year’s Bermuda Marathon Weekend with victory in the 10 km after 30:47 in torrential rain. Kenyan Hally Mulenga won the mileon Friday and was third in the 10 km (30:52) with Diriba Yigezu second in 30:49. Chipangama won the half marathon also in 1:04:21. The women’s race was won by Sarah Brown from fellow American Heather Kampf reversing the result from the Elite Women’s Front Street Mile. Brown came home in 35:24 (11th overall) with Kampf a minute back in 36:41 in the 10 km. The women’s Half-Marathon was won by US Lauren Hagens in 1:18.08.

NORTH SHORE (NZL, Jan 19): American visitor Kibwe Johnson, 2011 Pan American Games gold medalist in the hammer throw, achieved 70.45 m here.

WANGANUI (NZL, Jan 20): New Zealand's Olympic medalist Nick Willis, running his first race for 2014, added to the rich history of mile running in Wanganui, winning the feature race and running the 60th sub 4 minute mile in the city in 3:55.98. Angie Smit, New Zealand's top women 800 runner won the women mile in 4:43.66.


SPALA (POL, Jan 19): Konrad Bukowiecki, the youth all-time indoor best holder with 5 kg, improved his 6 kg best to 20.22 m. It is also World Youth Indoor all-time best, the previous one 20.12 by German Henning Pruger in 2013.

PRAHA (CZE, Jan 17): Pole Vault European Champion Jirina Svobodova opened here with 451 clearance, please correct the times of Denisa Rosolova to 17.77 PB in the 150 m and 37.39 in the 300 m.

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Images: 2016 Olympic Games