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Canada Track & Field and Cross Country News

Martinson Wins Synergy Health Bazan Bay 5k - Nine under 15:00 Chris Kelsall Mar 11, 2013

© Copyright - 2013 - Athletics Illustrated Nine men ran under 15 minutes in the Synergy Health Management Bazan Bay 5k in Sidney, BC on Sunday, March 10th. The overall winner was former University of Victoria Vikes star athlete, Geoff Martinson of Victoria, BC who finished in a near dead-heat with Vancouver’s Ryan Brockerville – a Simon Fraser University grad and current member of Point Grey Track and Field Club - in the time of 14:32. Third went to former University of Victoria Vike Clifford Childs in 14:40.

Synergy Health Management Bazan Bay 5k - a Competitive Race Chris Kelsall Mar 7, 2013

© Copyright - 2013 - Athletics Illustrated The fastest event of the 2013 Vancouver Island Race Series, the Synergy Health Management Bazan Bay 5k road race is happening this Sunday, March 10th in Sidney, BC (approximately 20 kilometres north of Victoria). The course is flat, fast and provides the potential for very good results. Because of the nature of the flat and straight course the field, as usual, will be competitive.   The favourite in the men’s division is Goeff Martinson of Victoria, BC. He is looking to defend his win from 2012, where he set the new course and all-time event record in the time of 14:20, where he was not challenged. This year may be different.

Rob Denault - Interview Chris Kelsall Mar 5, 2013

© Copyright - 2013 - Athletics Illustrated Rob Denault, who competes for the Villanova University Wildcats just wrapped up his 2013 indoor track season by acheiving one of his primary goals; running a sub-four minute mile at an indoor meet. He did so by running just under the benchmark of 3:59.39 as a freshman at the Alex Wilson Invitational at Loftus Sports Center on Saturday, March 2nd. Denault hails from Aurora, Ontario.  Denault earned All-Mid Atlantic Region honours and helped Villanova receive an automatic bid to the NCAA Championships by finishing 19th overall at the NCAA Mid-Atlantic Regional. He crossed the finish line in that race in 30:54 and was the Wildcats fifth counting runner. He also finished in the team's top five at all five scored meets during the cross-country season and placed second on the team and 53rd overall at the Pre-NCAA meet with a collegiate-best 8K time of 24:04.7.   

CIS and NCAA Championship Previews Andrew Maloney Mar 4, 2013

The men's CIS Indoor Championships could be a repeat of the runaway at the Ontario Championships while the women's meet could be decided on the final straightaway of the 4x400m relay -- South of the border several Canadians will be in action at the NCAA Indoor Championships in Arkansas where the hometown Razorbacks are expected to win the men's title for the first time since 2006.

Hajo Seppelt Interview - On Apparent Kenyan Doping Chris Kelsall Feb 27, 2013

Hans-Joachim “Hajo” Seppelt is a journalist for ARD, a nationwide German TV and radio broadcasting network located in Berlin. He is, as his bio indicates, a film author who is involved in creating features and reporting for all of the German state broadcasting institutions. At this time, he is primarily reporting for the regional WDR network with the doping editorial team (WDR in Cologne). Seppelt is also a reporter and expert for the ARD network on doping, politics in sport and coverage of the Summer and Winter Olympic Games, as well as other major sports events. Seppelt recently spent time undercover in Kenya posing as a sports agent. His report, broadcast on German television as well as radio, created a firestorm of controversy within Athletics Kenya. World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) President John Fahey visited Kenya and asked the sports officials to investigate the matter. One of the athletes implicated Mathew Kisorio, has received a two-year suspension. As a result of the broadcast Athletics Kenya’s Chairman Isaiah Kiplagat announced an ultimatum on October 17th that all foreign coaches working in Kenya without permits must leave the country in one week’s time. The announcement came one week after the report aired.

Courtney Babcock - Interview Chris Kelsall Feb 25, 2013

Chatham, Ontario’s Courtney Babcock is a distance runner who competed in the NCAA for the Division 1 University of Michigan Wolverines. At the time she earned a full-ride scholarship, but only at the last minute. Until her final year of high school, she was more interested in basketball and swimming and parlayed excellent general fitness into running competitively at a last chance meet. She later went onto to compete for Canada in the 2004 Athens Olympic Games, the 2001 and 2003 IAAF World Track and Field Championships that took place in Edmonton and Paris, respectively. Babcock also competed in the 2006 Melbourne Commonwealth Games. Thrice, she competed in the IAAF World Cross Country Championships. She holds the Canadian 5000m and 10000m records of 14:54.98 and 31:44.74. She is currently a mother of two boys and is coaching the University of Montana Grizzlies.

Speed River Inferno Chris Kelsall Feb 22, 2013

© Copyright - 2013 - Athletics Illustrated As part of the grand opening of their brand new state-of-the-art Alumni Stadium, Guelph, Ontario's Speed River Track and Field Club will host a unique, high-performance track meet on May 28th, called the Speed River Inferno. The event will be unusually fast, not just in regards to the pace that the athletes will be burning up the track with, but also in the length-of-time that the entire meet will take to showcase the elite talent that they are expecting to host. The Inferno meet will be just 60-to-90 minutes in length.

Stephen Kiprotich Interview Chris Kelsall Feb 19, 2013

  © Copyright - 2013 - Athletics Illustrated  Twenty-three-year old 2012 London Olympic Marathon Gold Medalist Stephen Kiprotich, of Uganda, is currently preparing to compete in the 2013 Virgin London Marathon on Sunday, April 21st. He owns a personal best time of 2:07:20, which he accomplished at the 2011 Enschede Marathon in the Netherlands, the the Ugandan record. His Olympic medal is the first gold for his country since his personal hero John Akii-Bua won won the 400m event at the 1972 Munich Olympic Games.

The Stunning Removal of Wrestling from the Olympic Games Chris Kelsall Feb 18, 2013

© Copyright - 2013 - Athletics Illustrated                                                                                                                                                                  On Tuesday, February 12th, the International Olympic Committee (IOC) made a stunning and highly criticized move to strip wrestling, one of the world’s oldest sports, from the Olympics. The 2016 Rio de Janeiro Games will have wrestling, the exclusion starts with the 2020 Games, for which a host city is not yet named. Dick Pound, former president of the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) and former vice president of the International Olympic Committee (IOC) told Athletics Illustrated, “At a time when the fundamental Olympic values are under great pressure (just see what is going on in cycling and football, among others), the decision of the IOC Executive Board to exclude one of the most traditional of the Olympic sports seems counter-intuitive. This is all the more so when the obvious split among the members of the Executive Board suggests not a principled consideration and decision, but subjective personal opinion, perhaps in some cases influenced by conflict, or perceived conflict, of interest.”

Declan White - Interview Chris Kelsall Feb 6, 2013

© Copyright - 2013 - Athletics Illustrated Twenty-year-old middle-distance specialist, Declan White of South Surrey, British Columbia has committed to competing for Trinity Western University for the start of the 2013 and 2014 school year. He is competitive in the range of distances from 400m to the 3000m as well as cross-country. On February 2nd he competed in the Jerome Indoor Classic 1500m event, finishing a respectable third behind the seasoned Geoff Martinson and Chris Winter in the time of 3:55.73. White will be competing at the Millrose Games later this month in the 4 x 800m, then plans to begin training in earnest for his first year of University.

Rob Guy - Interview Chris Kelsall Jan 30, 2013

  © Copyright - 2013 - Athletics Illustrated Rob Guy took over as CEO of Athletics Canada in October 2010 and has led a number of initiatives aimed at improving the depth and breadth of the sport of athletics in Canada as well as increasing communication and raising awareness of the sport. As the organization moves on from the 2012 London Olympic Games, Mr. Guy recently made a few personnel changes aimed at re-organizing and re-energizing the organization with a look towards 2016 Rio de Janeiro Olympic Games. Andrew Maloney: One of your stated goals for the sport in this country upon taking over as CEO of Athletics Canada was that different groups start working together more cohesively. What progress have you seen in this area?

Team Canada Nearly Sweeps NACAC Cross Country Championships Chris Kelsall Jan 28, 2013

  © Copyright - 2013 - Athletics Illustrated By Emily Hooper (Athletics Canada) with Christopher Kelsall and Thelma Wright Full results below On Saturday, January 26, Team Canada won three of four events at the 2013 North American Central American and Caribbean Cross Country Championships (NACAC) in Mandeville, Jamaica. The three teams:  senior women and junior men and women won their team events while senior men finished second overall. "It was a terrific day for the Canadian team here in Mandeville, Jamaica; we could not be more thrilled. I'm especially pleased for our senior women, notably Natasha (Fraser) and Rachel (Cliff), who completely rocked the race," said team head coach Dave Christiani. He adds, "All of our entries made us proud today. The NACAC Championships are always a valuable experience for juniors leading up to the World Champs." The women's senior team (18 points) won with a significant lead over the second place United States (26 points). Natasha Fraser and Rachel Cliff finished one-two in 21:07 and 21:35 respectively. "I am so happy to be part of the winning Canadian team; such an amazing experience," said an excited Fraser.

Deena Kastor - Interview Chris Kelsall Jan 27, 2013

  © Copyright - 2013 - Athletics Illustrated American marathon record holder Deena Kaster, of Mammoth Lakes, California has announced that she will compete in the 2013 LA Marathon that takes place on Sunday, March 17. Her recent performances of note were the Olympic Marathon Trials that took place in Houston, TX in January of 2012, where she finished in sixth place in the time of two hours and 34 minutes. Three months later on April 29th, she competed in the 10000m event at the Payton Jordan Cardinal Invitational in Palo Alto, CA, where she placed seventh, finishing in 31 minutes and 49.23 seconds. Kastor currently holds seven American distance records including the marathon best time of 2:19:36 and the half-marathon record of 67:34. She is also the bronze medalist from the 2004 Athens Olympic Games Marathon. Kastor has also won the Chicago and London Marathons.

Coach Chris Rengifo on Periodisation for High School Runners Chris Kelsall Jan 26, 2013

  By Chris Rengifo Chris Rengifo is an Assistant Coach with Division 1, Eastern Kentucky University in the NCAA. He is from Toronto, Ontario. Periodisation is hardly a new concept, but with new coaches coming into the sport and many different coaching styles there is a simple way of understanding the basics of the concept. There are generally four different phases that should be followed:  aerobic base, aerobic conditioning, aerobic power, and anaerobic tolerance. These four phases are key essentials to improving at getting better as a high school runner or at any level. Each phase stresses different systems of the body, from long tempo runs to shorter, faster intervals. They all help the runner understand their weakness and strengths. The aerobic base-phase involves building up mileage. Many runners don’t know where to start with their mileage which can lead to a guessing game. It can sometimes be difficult to find a high school coach, who understands the nuances of this concept, but some coaches usually have the beginners run with more experienced runners and have them do about 15-20 minutes, so they can get use to running that long and eventually go longer. This amount of time is a great starting point for beginner runners and for the more advanced runners starting around 20-30 minutes is perfect for high school runners at the beginning of the season.

Shock, Sympathy and Celebration Echo in Response to Firing of Martin Goulet and Alex Gardiner from A Chris Kelsall Jan 24, 2013

  © Copyright - 2013 - Athletics Illustrated "I've had the pleasure of knowing Alex Gardiner for 22 years, since my first World Junior Athletics Championship in 1990, and Martin Goulet almost as long.  I have nothing but the utmost respect for Alex and Martin and wish them well in their next venture. In all my dealings with both Alex and Martin both as an athlete and as a former member of the Board of Directors they have been nothing but professional and focused on improving the competitiveness of Canadian Athletics on the global scene," says Kevin Sullivan, one of Canada’s most successful middle-distance runners. Sullivan owns an outstanding 1500m personal best time of 3:31.71 and has run the mile as fast as 3:50.26. Sullivan finished fifth in the Olympics in one of the most competitive events in all of sports. Sullivan continues, "Alex and Martin set lofty yet realistic goals for our Athletics teams at the World Championships and Olympics.  Unfortunately when lofty goals are set they are not always achieved and that is not always the fault of the Head Coach or the Director of High Performance.  It is practically impossible to predict with certainty how a high performance team will perform at the very highest level and things such as injury, retirement, pregnancy, disqualifications, or just plain bad luck can throw a wrench into even the best laid plans. I also have tremendous respect for Athletics Canada CEO Rob Guy and know that this certainly could not have been an easy decision and it certainly will not be easy to fill the roles of Alex and Martin, who have been such integral parts of Athletics in Canada for many decades."

Martinson and Winter Set to Clash - Stilwell, Still well ahead of competition Chris Kelsall Jan 22, 2013

  © Copyright - 2013 - Athletics Illustrated Two of the best Canadian middle-distance athletes in Canada, Geoffrey Martinson and Chris Winter, are set to clash, head-to-head at the Jerome Indoor meet Saturday February 2nd in Vancouver, BC.  This should be an exciting race as both athletes are coming off of excellent performances in cross-country and road racing. Martinson of Victoria competed in the 2011 Daegu IAAF World Track and Field Championships and owns a personal best time of 3:37.56 (outdoors), more recently he ran 13:50 at the 2012 Chiba Ekiden in his five kilometre leg. He then followed up that fine performance by running the ninth fastest course time at the 34th annual Pioneer 8km in Victoria, finishing in 23:49 to win the popular BC fixture on January 13th.