Abebe Bikila 1960, 64& Feyisa Lilesa 2016


Sunday, November 18, 2012

Ethiopia bring in new faces for Cecafa Challenge Cup -BBC Sport

Ethiopia football fans

Ethiopia have announced a squad which includes more than a dozen uncapped players for this month's Cecafa Challenge Cup in Uganda.
The former African champions will be without the majority of the players who helped the team qualify for next year's Nations Cup in South Africa after a 31-year absence.
Midfielder Yared Zenabu, of Ethiopian league champions Saint George, is the only player in the squad who contributed actively in the 2013 Nations Cup qualifying campaign.
The 14 uncapped players are home-based except for Abraham Kassa who plays in Alabama in the United States.
Perhaps, the most experienced player in the 21-man squad is globetrotter Fikru Tefera, who has played in Europe, Africa and Asia. The other foreign-based player is Yusuf Salah, of Swedish club Syrianska.
The inclusion of both Salah and Kassa forms part of Ethiopia's drive to search for overseas-based players of Ethiopian origin to strengthen their squad for the Nations Cup.
Ethiopia have been drawn in Group A of the Cecafa Challenge Cup, along with hosts Uganda, neighbours Kenya and South Sudan.
They will open the competition against South Sudan on 24 November at the Namboole Stadium. The final will be played on 8 December at the same venue.
Goalkeepers: Binyam Habtamu (Hawassa City), Samson Asefa (Harar Beer), Deraje Alemu (Sebeta City)
Defenders: Moges Tadesse, Robel Girma (Sidama Coffee), Girma Bekele (Hawassa City), Mehari Mena (Commercial Bank Ethiopia)
Midfielders: Gatoch Panomo, Masood Mohamed (Ethiopia Coffee), Yared Zenabu, Mesfin Kidane (Saint George), Tilahun Wolde (Defence), Abdul Karim Hassan (Electricity), Elias Mamo (Commercial Bank Ethiopia), Mulualem Mesfin (Arba Minch)
Strikers: Dawit Fekadu, (Dedebit), Yonathan Kebede (Electricity), Amele Milkias (Arba Minch), Fikru Tefera (Thanh Hoa, Vietnam), Abraham Kassa (Alabama College, USA), Yusuf Salah (Syrianska, Sweden)

Saturday, November 17, 2012

Afcon forces Ethiopia to pick second team for Cecafa

Afcon forces Ethiopia to pick second team for Cecafa tournament

Ethiopia have named a second string team for the 2012 Cecafa Cup in Uganda.
The Ethiopian Football Federation on Thursday revealed the 21-man squad that will be headed by Coach Seyoum Kebede and his assistant, Daniel Gebremariam.
Ethiopia have been drawn in Group A of the Cecafa Cup alongside hosts Uganda, South Sudan and Kenya.
Though no reasons were advanced for the decision to send a second string team, it is widely reported in the local media that the head coach wants to preserve most of his key players from picking up injuries or suffering from fatigue before the Africa Cup of Nations which kicks off in January.
Ethiopia who are making their return to the competition have been drawn in Group C alongside Nigeria, Zambia,Ethiopia and Burkina Faso.
Full Squad
Goalkeepers (3): Binyam Habtamu (Hawassa City), Dereje Alemu (Sebeta) and Samson Assefa (Harar Beer).
Defenders (5): Girma Bekele (Hawassa), Aklilu Ayenew (Dedebit FC), Mehari Mena (CBE), Robel Girma and Moges Tadesse (Sidama Coffee).
Midfielders (8): Gatoch Panom and Massoud Mohammed (Eth. Coffee), Yared Zenabu & Mesfin Kidane (St. George), Elias Mamo (CBE), Tilahun Wolde (Defence), Abdulkarim Hassen (EEPCO) and Mulualem Mesfin (Arba Minch).
Forwards: (5): Yonathan Kebede (EEPCO), Dawit Fekadu (Dedebit FC), Amele Milkiyas (Arba Minch), Fuad Ibrahim (Minnesota Stars – USA) and Fikru Teffera (Thanh Hoa – Vietnam).

Thursday, November 15, 2012

Fekadu Beats The Rain To Win Beirut Marathon

Kedir Fekadu celebrates at the finish line in Beirut. Photo: IAAF

Mary Akor of the United States took third in the women’s event.
Kedir Fekadu didn’t let the weather get in his way last weekend. The Ethiopian braved the rain and wind to win the Beirut Marathon on Sunday. The race, which comprised 33,000 participants, was an IAAF Bronze Label Race.
Feduku’s winning time was 2:12:57. Second place went to Stephen Chepkopo in 2:13:14. The final spot on the podium was awarded to William Kipsang (2:14:53).
In the women’s race, Saeda Kedir prevailed with a 2:35:08. Second and third went to Monica Jepkoech (2:36:20) of Kenya and Mary Akor of the United States (2:37:32) respectively.
The race was entirely an international affair with runners from 96 countries taking part.
But the weather come race day presented special challenges for organizers. There was wind; there was rain, and there was even hail at times on the course.
This year, organizers staged a new event: a 1K celebrity race. According to the IAAF, the event was called “Break a Negative and Run” and had been designed to create a positive sports environment in the face of unrest in the region.

Thursday, November 8, 2012

Merga And Masai To Kick Off XC Season

Merga And Masai To Kick Off XC Season

  • By News
  • Published Nov. 7, 2012
  • Updated 15 hours ago
Imane Merga will be the runner to beat in Spain. Photo: IAAF

It will be Ethiopia versus Kenya in Spain.
Ethiopia’s Imane Merga and Kenya’s Linet Masai will be heading the field at the Cross Internacional de Atapuerca this Sunday in Spain. Merga is the reigning world champion.
Merga is also an accomplished track runner. He took the bronze medal in the 2011 World Championships in Daegu, South Korea.
Joining him in the opening race of the IAAF Permit Cross Country series is fellow countryman Dejen Gebremeskel, the  2011 World Championships bronze medalist and 2012 Olympic silver medallist in the 5000m.
Vincent Chepkok of Kenya will be trying to unseat the Ethiopians. Chepkok was the 2011 bronze medalist at the world championships.
On the women’s side, Kenya leads the way with 22-year-old Linet Masai.
Masai is one of the sport’s most consistent cross-country runners. She has won the silver medal in the last three world cross-country championships.
Priscah Jepleting and Mercy Cherono join Masai as part of the Kenyan contingent.
The Ethiopians have Belaynesh Oljira and Hiwot Wude. Both runners specialize in the track events (10,000m and steeplechase).

Monday, November 5, 2012

For elite runners, cancellation of New York Marathon a lost payday - Marathon - Boston.com

For elite runners, cancellation of New York Marathon a lost payday

A bump in their road

By John Powers
Globe Staff /  November 3, 2012
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Meb Keflezighi emigrated to the United States from Eritrea, which had been ripped apart by civil war. Edna Kiplagat comes from Kenya, where the annual per capita income is $820. Nobody has to tell them that the short-notice cancellation of a five-borough footrace is not a human tragedy, not when corpses are still being discovered in Staten Island.
“We understand,” Kiplagat said Friday after the mayor and race organizers had called off the New York City Marathon for the first time.
There will be other races, other paydays for the elite runners, most of whom were promised six-figure appearance fees just for flying in and lacing up Sunday. But the Apple is a big one, and there won’t be another top-tier 26-miler until late winter.
Kiplagat, the reigning world champion, and Boston victor Sharon Cherop were the biggest losers when the race was scrubbed. Had either woman won New York, she would have claimed the World Marathon Majors title and collected a $500,000 bonus to go with the $130,000 winner’s check. Since this was the last race of the two-year cycle, the crown and cash go to their countrywoman Mary Keitany, the two-time London victor.
Keflezighi wasn’t in contention for the WMM men’s title, which already was clinched by Kenya’s Geoffrey Mutai, who holds the world record for all races between Hopkinton and Boston. But he could have picked up a cool $200,000 for winning since his status as a former champion (2009) would have entitled him to a $70,000 bonus.
This has been a redemptive year for Keflezighi, the Athens runner-up who largely had been written off after he crippled himself trying to make the 2008 Olympic team in Central Park. He won the trials for London, then surged out of the pack to finish fourth at the Games on a bad foot. Another victory here would have been a lovely addition to a résumé that, because he is 37, doesn’t have many pages left.
“I am honored and blessed,” Keflezighi said last week. “My career has been fulfilled. Everything that I do from here is frosting on the cake.”
Still, missing the chance at a hefty payday hurts, since most of the top guns get only two a year. Unless the women want to jet to Yokohama two weekends from now and the men to Fukuoka next month for what are second-tier marathons, their season has ended with a blank space. Depending on how the New York Road Runners want to make it up to them, the Mosops and Gelanas and Kipsangs may be reluctant to lay their one autumnal chip on the same number next year.
It was unclear Saturday whether the elite runners still would get to keep their full appearance fees. They did what they’d contracted to do by showing up ready to rumble and it wasn’t their decision to cancel the event.
“The NYCM is a special race for me & millions of people around the world,” Keflezighi tweeted, “but I understand why it cannot be held under current circumstances.”
Keflezighi loves New York, where he made his marathon breakthrough and which he says is “almost my second home.” The race may not have Boston’s primacy and pedigree, but it attracts a superb field, makes a point of showcasing Americans, and provides a global stage. It’s the culmination of the WMM series, and in an Olympic year, it’s the only real option for a fall marathon since it provides an extra month’s rest.
Kiplagat and Cherop had good reason to assume that the race would go on, as it had every year since the first one in 1970, even in the aftermath of the 9/11 attacks. They could have opted to pick up their WMM points in Berlin at the end of September or in Chicago last month and not had to worry about a once-in-a-lifetime superstorm turning Gotham City upside-down, but they took a calculated risk in putting everything on the finale.
They will get their next chance sooner rather than later since the Tokyo Marathon has just been added to the series. But since that race comes on Feb. 24, it would rule out competing in London and Boston and would force those who run in Japan to wait more than eight months for a major unless they opt for the August world championships in Moscow. Compared with what New Yorkers have been through for the past week, scheduling issues are small worries.
Many of the African runners have lived amid terrible times back home and none of them were complaining about an idle weekend in Manhattan, given the destruction and misery that they were watching on TV. But they can’t be blamed if Berlin starts looking a lot better. No hurricanes there — yet.
John Powers can be reached at jpowers@globe.com.end of story marker

Friday, November 2, 2012

Breaking the Two-Hour Marathon Barrier - WSJ.com

'via Blog this'[image]
Associated Press
The leaders in last year's New York Marathon. Winner Geoffrey Mutai is fourth from left.
Amid the continuing debate over the wisdom of proceeding with Sunday's New York City Marathon, the world's best distance runners are focused on more than just the glory of winning the race.
The elite of the elite in marathoning is chasing a larger, longer-term goal—the pursuit of breaking two hours in distance running's glamour event. Geoffrey Mutai's world-best 2:03:02 in the 2011 Boston Marathon put the world on notice that the two-hour barrier was getting eerily close to striking distance. (It didn't count as an official record because the course doesn't meet international standards; too much downhill, too much potential tailwind.) Five months later, Kenyan Patrick Makau lowered the official world record to 2:03:38 in Berlin.
"It's going to happen in my lifetime," said Meb Keflezighi, the silver medalist in the 2004 Olympic marathon, who will compete Sunday in New York. "This is like Roger Bannister and the four-minute mile. No one had done it before him, and now we're nearly 17 seconds beyond that."
Breaking two hours in the marathon will be an utterly lung-searing achievement, even for the Ethiopians and Kenyans, who dominate distance running. Whoever breaks through the long-unfathomable barrier must average better than 4:35 per mile for 26.2 miles. As astounding as Mutai's feat was—with Kenya's Moses Mosop just four seconds back—he was still about 1,100 yards short at the two-hour mark.
Getty Images (3)
The three runners in Sunday's New York City Marathon with the fastest times.
However, in 2010, Zerisenay Tadese of Eritrea ran a half-marathon in 58:23, a pace of about 4:27 per mile. In the small world of elite distance running, breaking the two-hour barrier has left the realm of "if" and has become a matter of "when?" and "who?"
The official marathon world record is falling at faster clip than other world records. Makau's record time is 4.2% lower than the world record time in 1980. The world record in the 100 meters is down only about 3.5% during that time. The men's 110-meter hurdles record has barely budged, down only 1% since the 1980s. The men's 1,500-meter record has dropped 2.3% since 1983. Theoretically, human beings should be improving at all distances at the same rate.
No one doubts there is some limit to how fast a human can run the marathon. Moreover, in a post-Lance Armstrong world, the specter of performance-enhancing drugs looms over every remarkable endurance accomplishment. But setting that concern aside for the moment, the 120-minute barrier is now close enough for a special outlier—a long-distance version of sprinter Usain Bolt—to emerge and make a run at it.
[image]Associated Press
Abebe Bikila at the 1964 Olympics.
"The question is whether there is a superstar like (Abebe) Bikila in his prime," Bill Rodgers, the former New York and Boston Marathon champion, said of the late Ethiopian champion who won consecutive Olympic marathon gold medals in 1960 and 1964.

Researchers say according to conversion tables that attempt to line up world records for different distances, the marathon record is actually somewhat slower than it should be. "It's a little soft right now," said Michael Joyner, an anesthesiologist at the Mayo Clinic and a leading researcher in endurance sports.
Joyner, who once ran a sub-2:26 marathon, said a correlation with the world records in the 10,000 meters and the 5,000 meters and the marathon suggests "someone out there should have run about a 2:01:50 by now. Getting another minute or two off the current world record shouldn't be a problem. We'll see about it after that."
Humans are undoubtedly up to the task physiologically. The species owes its survival to endurance running, said Daniel Lieberman, a professor of evolutionary biology at Harvard. Humans are slow compared with most mammals. Bolt, the fastest human we know of, runs only about 10.4 meters per second. "I could take any sheep out of a pen and it could beat Bolt in a short race," Lieberman said.
And yet, humans and our ancestors have been hunting and eating meat for some two million years. Hunting tools are relatively new inventions, Lieberman notes. A bow and arrow, for instance, is only about 100,000 years old. But Lieberman says we have long been able to run our prey into heat exhaustion, thanks to our springy feet, long Achilles tendons, large, strong rear ends, and the ability to cool ourselves down by sweating. Other mammals pant, but they can't pant and gallop at the same time. In recent years, men have occasionally beaten horses in long distance races.
Lieberman isn't saying a sub-two-hour marathon is inevitable. "Natural selection doesn't care one iota about the performance of the elite members of the species at distance running," he said.
The continuing acceleration in elite performance in the marathon may have more to do with the economic, sociological and demographic factors that are expanding distance-running's talent pool than it does about physiology or even training methods.
However, the fact that much of the recent progress has been made without much innovation in training could mean the two-hour barrier is within reach, said Yannis Pitsiladis, a researcher at the University of Glasgow's College of Medicine, Veterinary & Life Sciences, who has studied elite distance runners in East Africa. "The current thinking is that it will fall sometime between 2020 and 2030, but I think it can happen much sooner, perhaps as soon as the next five years," he said. "We haven't really used much science yet in training."
Indeed, training regimens haven't changed much since the early days of the running boom in the late 1960s.
Pitsiladis and others are still trying to figure out exactly how training could be modernized. Amby Burfoot, who won the 1968 Boston Marathon while still in college at Wesleyan University, said he was doing intense distance training back then that isn't unlike what the top marathoners do today. He averaged about 125 miles per week. A month before his win in the Boston Marathon, he ran 350 miles during a two-week training trip to Quantico, Va.
"There are no supersecret workouts out there," says Burfoot, now an editor at large for Runners World. "People who run fast and win marathons have a lot of talent and they train really hard."
At the root of the improvement, experts say, is the professionalization of the sport, which has allowed the best athletes to pursue marathoning without holding down another job.

When Rodgers began to win marathons in 1970s, he was a middle-school special-education teacher. He'd win a marathon and be back in the classroom by the middle of the week.
Beginning in the 1980s, however, prize money and sponsorship dollars from shoe companies started to become sufficient enough for the best runners to begin to make a living at their sport.
The winner of Sunday's New York marathon will collect $130,000, or $200,000 if he is a repeat champion.

Marathon money has helped spark a boom in distance running, especially in Africa where the sport has long been embedded in the culture and average income hovers between $200 and $800. The top 15 lifetime money winners in distance running were all born in Africa, including Ethiopia's Haile Gebreselasie, considered the most talented distance runner in history and the former world record holder in the marathon.
Marathons now account for about two-thirds of all road racing prize money, which has encouraged the most talented distance runners to focus on the distance from the start of their careers. "With all that money, are you going to concentrate on the 5K or 10K or go right to the marathon?" Keflezhigi said.
Marathoning itself has exploded, too, improving the chances of the sport capturing a long-distance version of Bolt, who is almost perfectly designed for speed. Last year there were 2,986 marathons world-wide, compared with just 297 in 1972. More races mean more athletic children think of pursuing long distance running, especially in places like South America and China, where the sport still has significant room to grow.

Researchers now understand what the person who runs the first sub-two-hour marathon will look like. He should be fairly small, probably shorter than 5-foot-7 and weighing about 125 pounds. A small body has less surface area and can cool more efficiently than bodies with more surface area. He will also have a freakish ability to move oxygen through his body, but run fast using limited oxygen—an attribute likely helped by being born and growing up at high altitude.
Finally, as in all endurance sports, determination may have as much to do with it as anything
"I know this," Rodgers said. "It will be broken by someone who believes it can be broken."
Write to Matthew Futterman at matthew.futterman@wsj.com
A version of this article appeared November 2, 2012, on page D1 in the U.S. edition of The Wall Street Journal, with the headline: Breaking the Two-Hour Marathon Barrier.