Kosgei Joins Kipchoge As IAAF Athlete Of The Year Nominee

Kenya’s Brigid Kosgei smiles after winning the women’s 2019 Bank of America Chicago Marathon with the World Record on October 13 2019 in Chicago, Illinois.  KAMIL KRZACZYNSKI / AFP

 

Brigid Kosgei, who broke the marathon world record at the weekend, was among 11 nominees announced Tuesday on the IAAF’s list of candidates for female world athlete of the year.

Kosgei’s fellow Kenyan Eliud Kipchoge, who on Saturday became the first person to run the marathon distance in under two hours, was one of the 11 men nominated in a list released on Monday by the governing body of world athletics.

The two marathon runners are the only nominees not to have won a gold medal at the recent World Championships at Doha.

Kosgei, 25, shattered Britain’s Paula Radcliffe’s 16-year-old women’s marathon world record on Sunday, with a time of two hours, 14 minutes and four seconds in Chicago.

She is one of three Kenyans on the women’s list. The others are 3,000m steeplechase world record-holder and world champion Beatrice Chepkoech and two-time world 5,000m champion, Hellen Obiri.

Kipchoge is joined on the men’s list by fellow Kenyan Timothy Cheruyiot who won the 10,000m world title, on a men’s list dominated by Americans.

Sprinters Christian Coleman and Noah Lyles, pole vaulter Sam Kendricks, triple jumper Christian Taylor and 800m runner Donavan Brazier are all on the list.

Brazier is one of two nominees who are members of the controversial Oregon Project and were trained by Alberto Salazar, who was banned for doping as the world championship began. The other is Ethiopian-born Dutch athlete Sifan Hassan, who won both the women’s 1,500m and 10,000m in Doha.

Women’s nominees:

Beatrice Chepkoech (KEN), Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce (JAM), Katarina Johnson-Thompson (GBR), Sifan Hassan (NED), Brigid Kosgei (KEN), Mariya Lasitskene (ANA), Malaika Mihambo (GER), Dalilah Muhammad (USA), Salwa Eid Naser (BRN), Hellen Obiri (KEN), Yulimar Rojas (VEN)

Men’s nominees:

Donavan Brazier (USA), Christian Coleman (USA), Joshua Cheptegei (UGA), Timothy Cheruyiot (KEN), Steven Gardiner (BAH), Sam Kendricks (USA), Eliud Kipchoge (KEN), Noah Lyles (USA), Daniel Stahl (SWE), Christian Taylor (USA), Karsten Warholm (NOR).

AFP

Former Athletics Chief Banned For 10 Years Over Corrupt Practice

Courtesy: www.iaaf.org

Kenya’s former athletics team manager Michael Rotich has been banned for 10 years for agreeing to provide advance notice to athletes of doping tests in exchange for money, the IAAF announced on Wednesday.

Rotich was exposed by two undercover journalists from the Sunday Times in an article published in August 2016 and was sent home in disgrace from the Olympic Games in Rio which were underway at the time.

He was also provisionally banned by the IAAF from his coaching job.

In a statement Wednesday an IAAF’s Ethics Board panel said Rotich had offered to warn athletes of impending tests so they could flush doping substances from their system in order to circumvent tests.

He also offered to provide excuses which athletes could use to avoid being penalised for missing tests.

“The panel reiterates that the charges which it has found to be established are serious,” the statement said.

“The conduct of Major Rotich was dishonest and corrupt. He sought to undermine anti-doping controls and to obtain a personal financial benefit in doing so.”

The two Sunday Times journalists posing as the sports manager and coach of a fictional British athletics team met Rotich three times in early 2016, according to the Ethics panel.

They were promised advance warning of doping tests in return for £10,000 ($12,600, 11,300 euros).

The statement said that it had found no evidence that Rotich did in fact provide advance notice of doping tests nor that he had ever received payments.

“However the panel has found that Major Rotich acted corruptly and in deliberate violation of core principles of the Code (of Ethics), it said.

AFP

Semenya Loses Court Case Against IAAF Testosterone Rules

South African Olympic 800m champion Caster Semenya competes in the 1.500m senior women final at the ASA Senior Championships at Germiston Athletics stadium,/ AFP

 

South African runner Caster Semenya on Wednesday lost her court challenge against IAAF rules forcing female athletes to regulate their testosterone levels, but judges voiced concern with the application of the “discriminatory” regulations.

Semenya, a double Olympic champion, was fighting measures imposed by the International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF) that compel “hyperandrogenic” athletes — or those with “differences of sexual development” (DSD) — to lower their testosterone levels if they wish to compete as women.

South African Olympic 800m champion Caster Semenya / AFP

A three judge panel at the Court of Arbitration for Sport said it had “some serious concerns as to the future practical application of these DSD regulations.”

Even though the regulations are “discriminatory…such discrimination is a necessary, reasonable and proportionate means of achieving the IAAF’s aim of preserving the integrity of female athletics in the Restricted Events,” the Lausanne-based court said in a statement.

The IAAF insisted the rules were essential to preserve a level playing field and ensure that all female athletes can see “a path to success”.

The verdict is certain to cause controversy, as Semenya was backed by a global coalition of nations and scientific experts who argued that testosterone is an arbitrary and unfair measure for determining gender.

Experts also stressed that achieving excellence in sport is a combination of training and commitment as well as genetics and that barring people from competition over a single genetic factor has no scientific basis.

In a rare intrusion into the world of sport, the United Nations Human Rights Council adopted a resolution last month branding the IAAF rules “unnecessary, humiliating and harmful”.

The IAAF has countered that DSD athletes with male levels of testosterone “get the same increases in bone and muscle size and strength and increases in haemoglobin that a male gets when they go through puberty.”

Semenya’s testosterone levels are not publicly known, but she is unlikely to be the only athlete affected by Wednesday’s verdict.

The two athletes who finished behind her in the Rio Olympics 800m, Francine Niyonsaba of Burundi and Kenya’s Margaret Wambui, have also faced questions about their testosterone levels.

Caster Semenya Says She Is ‘Unquestionably A Woman’

South Africa’s Caster Semenya runs to victory in the women’s 800 metres during the IAAF Diam nd League athletics ‘Herculis’ meeting at The Stade Louis II Stadium in Monaco on July 20, 2018.
Valery HACHE / AFP

 

South African 800m Olympic champion Caster Semenya on Thursday said she was “unquestionably a woman after the IAAF denied reports that it would argue that she should be classified as a biological male.

Semenya, 28, issued the statement ahead of a landmark hearing at the Court of Arbitration (CAS) next week that will challenge a proposed rule by the International Athletics Federation (IAAF) aiming to restrict testosterone levels in female runners.

“Ms Semenya is unquestionably a woman. She is a heroine and an inspiration to many around the world,” her lawyers said in a statement.

“She asks that she be respected and treated as any other athlete.”

The rules would force so-called “hyperandrogenic” athletes or those with “differences of sexual development” (DSD) to keep testosterone levels below a prescribed amount.

The rules were to have been instituted in November 2018 but have been put on ice pending next week’s hearings.

Supported by the South African Athletics Federation, the two-time Olympic champion in the 800m (2012, 2016) and three-time world champion (2009, 2011, 2017) has denounced the proposals.

“I just want to run naturally, the way I was born. It is not fair that I am told I must change. It is not fair that people question who I am,” she has said previously.

“She looks forward to responding to the IAAF at the upcoming CAS hearing,” Semenya’s legal team said, adding that “her genetic gift should be celebrated, not discriminated against”.

As well as Semenya, the silver and bronze medallists of the 800m at the Rio Olympics, Francine Niyonsaba of Burundi and Kenya’s Margaret Wambui, have also faced questions about their testosterone levels.

“The IAAF is not classifying any DSD athlete as male,” the IAAF said in a statement. “To preserve fair competition in the female category, it is necessary to require DSD athletes to reduce their testosterone down to female levels.”

A CAS spokesman confirmed to AFP on Thursday that the hearing is scheduled for next week in Lausanne from Monday to Friday with Semenya in attendance.

AFP

IAAF Maintains Russia’s Athletics Ban Over Doping

IAAF

The governing body of world athletics on Friday maintained Russia’s ban from track and field over mass doping, just 10 days before the start of the European Championships in Berlin.

“The IAAF Council unanimously adopted the resolution that RUSAF (the Russian athletics federation) not be reinstated at this time,” said Rune Andersen, head of the IAAF’s Russian taskforce team.

Andersen, however, said there had been “a lot of meaningful engagement from RUSAF,” which has made “significant improvement” in meeting reinstatement requirements.

“In some cases they have gone above and beyond what is required,” the Norwegian said before adding that the conclusion remained that RUSAF not be reinstated at this time with further progress still to be made.

Andersen said that for Russia to be reinstated, ideally at the IAAF Council’s next meeting in Monaco in December after a WADA meet in September, three demands must be met.

Firstly, RUSAF must pay for the costs incurred by the IAAF in the wake of the doping scandal, notably the establishment of the task force.

The Russian Anti-Doping Agency RUSADA must also be reinstated by the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA), with a key requirement being the acknowledgement by Moscow that ministry of sports officials orchestrated the doping of Russian athletes.

And finally, Russian authorities must give access to doping tests carried out at RUSADA’s Moscow laboratory between 2011-15.

IAAF president Sebastian Coe added: “Progress has been made in key areas. There are still some gaps to be filled.

“We have brought about change and it’s change that is very viable. But we weren’t yet at that point where every element of that (reinstatement) criteria had been met.”

Russian athletics federation President Dmitry Shlyakhtin said he had been hoping for better news.

“We are disappointed by the decision taken today by the IAAF Council,” Shlyakhtin was quoted as saying by TASS news agency.

“I cannot hide that we were counting on a positive decision, on a partial restoration of the Russian athletics federation. Sadly, this hasn’t happened.

“We will continue, however, to work towards the restoration of the federation.”

Russia was accused in a WADA report in 2016 of widespread state-sponsored doping. Its athletics team was barred from that summer’s Rio Olympics and also missed the IAAF World Championships in London a year later.

A number of Russian athletes, however, have been granted permission by the International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF) to compete as neutrals after meeting the exceptional eligibility criteria, essentially demonstrating that they’ve come through transparent anti-doping testing.

Russia had also been banned from the Olympic movement over the doping scandal culminating at the 2014 Russian-hosted Sochi Winter Games.

A team of 168 Russians competed in this year’s Pyeongchang Winter Games under the neutral banner of “Olympic Athletes from Russia”, although a Russian curling medallist tested positive for a banned substance.

The International Olympic Committee then lifted its ban on Russia at the end of the Pyeongchang Olympics.

AFP

Semenya Back On Track After Challenging IAAF Rules

 

 

Caster Semenya will bid to put her run-in with the IAAF over controversial new rules on testosterone behind her when she makes her Paris debut on Saturday in the seventh leg of the Diamond League.

Semenya is unbeaten over the 800m since her elimination in the semi-finals of the 2015 worlds in Beijing.

She has run the fastest time of the season, clocking 1min 55.92sec in Eugene, but she will have to better her own personal best by 0.19sec should she aim for the meet record of 1:54.97, held since 2008 by the Kenyan Pamela Jelimo.

Semenya, double Olympic champion (2012, 2016) and twice world champion (2009, 2017), faces some tough competition in the shape of American Ajee Wilson, Burundi’s Olympic silver medallist and reigning world champ Francine Nyonsaba, Ethiopian Habitam Alemu and Kenyan Margaret Wambui, bronze medallist at the Rio Games in 2016.

Off the track, Semenya has turned to the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) in her challenge of IAAF rules on testosterone occurring in female athletes that are to be introduced on November 1.

The powerfully-built Semenya is potentially the highest-profile female athlete that would be affected by such regulations.

Classified as “hyper-androgynous”, athletes like Semenya would have to chemically lower their testosterone levels to be able to compete, something the 800m runner says is discriminatory and in violation of the IAAF’s Constitution and the Olympic Charter.

“We will support our athletes on the grounds that the regulations discriminate against certain female athletes on the basis of natural physical characteristics and/or sex,” Athletics South Africa head Aleck Skhosana said after a meeting with IAAF president Sebastian Coe in London on Tuesday.

Semenya is just one high-profile athlete at what promises to be high-quality meet at Stade Charlety in southern Paris.

Home favourite Renaud Lavillenie tops pole vault lists this season, with a 5.95m in April.

But hot on his heels are the Swedish prodigy Armand Duplantis, the 18-year-old going over at 5.93m in May — a new junior world record — and American world champion Sam Kendricks, Canadian Shawn Barber (5.92m in 2018), Poles Piotr Lisek and Pawel Wojciechowski, and Brazilian Thiago Braz, reigning Olympic champion.

One of the stars to have emerged this season is undoubtedly naturalised Qatari 400m hurdler Abderrahman Samba.

Samba has only been doing the event for two years, but has enjoyed an explosive start to the season, racking up Diamond League victories in Doha, Rome, Oslo and Stockholm, running an Asian record of 47.41sec at the latter.

Samba will again face Karsten Warholm, the Norwegian who caused arguably the biggest upset of the London worlds when he won gold.

The women’s high jump will see defending double world champion Mariya Lasitskene, with a best of 2.03m this season, go for a 44th consecutive victory.

That field also includes Belgium’s Nafissatou Thiam, the Olympic and world heptathlon champion (2.01m in 2018), and Bulgarian Mirela Demireva (2.00m).

AFP

Okpekpe Tops List of IAAF Label 10km Races For May

East Africans Sweep Okpekpe Road Race

The sixth edition of the Okpekpe international 10km road race will officially flag off a number of International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF) label road races in the world this year.

The race in Okpekpe, a town in Etsako East Local Government Area of Edo State located about 25 km North East of Auchi will be the first IAAF silver label road race in West Africa just like it did in 2015 when the town became famous for hosting the first ever IAAF label road race in sub-Sahara Africa.

The history-making event will take place on Saturday, May 12 and it is the only IAAF silver label 10km road race for the first half of 2018.

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A day later, attention will move to the Indian city of Bangalore for the IAAF gold label Tata Consultancy Services World 10K Bengaluru which holds a day after the Okpekpe race.

Ottawa in Canada will host the third and final IAAF label 10km road race for the first half of the year. The Ottawa 10km race will hold on May 26 and it is an IAAF gold label road race.

Meanwhile, organisers of next weekend’s first-of-its-kind race in Okpekpe has warned that registered athletes must wear the temporary timing chip attached to their race number.

Henry Amike, the elite athletes manager for the silver label race said failure to wear this will result in the participant’s name being omitted from the results. This means such a participant will not be eligible for the prize monies on offer.

”The race number and temporary timing chip are linked to your name and finishing time.

Allowing another person to compete with your number will result in disqualification of the other person and your exclusion from next year’s event,” Amike warned.

He also disclosed that the use of personal music players with headphones will not be allowed.

IAAF Confirms Date For 2018 Okpekpe Road Race

The International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF) has confirmed that the 2018 Okpekpe International Road Race will hold on May 12th.

Okpekpe 10-km race has been listed by the IAAF as one of the 10 Silver Label races to hold in the first half of 2018.

The athletics body elevated the race to a Silver Label status after the Cape Town Marathon in South Africa, which was upgraded to a Gold Label status.

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The 2017 Edition of the race saw Ethiopia’s Leul Gabriesialse and Gabru Azemra win the men and women categories.

The Okpekpe road race is the first and only road race in Nigeria that has been granted full membership of Association of International Marathons and Distance Races (AIMS).

Russia Making Progress Over Doping – IAAF Chief

(File Photo)

IAAF chief Lord Sebastian Coe believes Russia is showing a significant change in its attitude to tackling the doping scandal that saw the nation exiled from world athletics.

Russia has been banned from international athletics competition since November 2015 after doping issues.

The country’s anti-doping agency, RUSADA, is also yet to be declared fully compliant by the World Anti-Doping Agency.

Russian athletes have also effectively been banned from next year’s Winter Olympics in Pyeongchang, unless they can satisfy stringent drug-testing regulations in order to compete as neutrals.

Coe indicated there are reasons for hope that Russia is finally dealing with the problem, but he said the IAAF would still resist setting any time-scale for the nation’s reintegration into athletics.

“We made a decision that in a way was quite different to the one the IOC was confronted with,” Coe told BBC Radio Five Live on Sunday.

“I’ve had 149 or 150 positive tests in the sport, from Russia within a three or four year period.

“It was very clear as far I was concerned and the Council of the IAAF was concerned that nobody else was going to come to our rescue here. We had to take the appropriate action.

“We set up the task force which created the five-step criteria by which they would be judged – and actually they’re moving in the right direction and we’ve got some significant change.

“The task force reports back to the Council once or twice a year and each time they come back and say there’s still more to do.

“But some of the challenges that we were being appraised of just a few months earlier have actually moved.

“I am faithful to the independent work of the task force and the task force will recommend to the council when that moment of reintegration is.”

AFP

Barshim, Thiam Named World ‘Athletes Of The Year’

World high jump champion Qatar’s Mutaz Essa Barshim (L) and Belgium’s athlete Nafissatou Thiam (R) react with their trophy after being awarded Male and Female Athletes of the Year 2017. Photo: Valery HACHE / AFP

High jumper Mutaz Essa Barshim and heptathlete Nafissatou Thiam were named male and female world athletes of the year by the International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF) at a ceremony in Monaco on Friday.

Qatari Barshim, 26, was unbeaten in 11 competitions in 2017, winning gold at the world championships and romping to the Diamond League crown.

Thiam, 23, also took the world title to add to her Olympic crown and broke through the 7,000 points barrier by registering 7,013 at a meeting in Austria.

IAAF President Sebastian Coe presented the trophy to Barshim, while International Athletics Foundation (IAF) Honorary President Prince Albert II of Monaco presented the trophy to Thiam.

“Tonight is our time to celebrate,” Coe said. “We have recognised the achievements and remarkable careers of some outstanding athletes, coaches and officials.”

Reuters 

World Championships: Lindley, Amusan Through To 100mh Semis

File Photo//Amusan (L), Lindley (R)

Nigerian duo Lindsay Lindley and Tobi Amusan has qualified for the 100 meters hurdles semi-finals in the 2017 IAAF World Championships.

Running in lane 5 of heat 3, Lindley clocked 13.07 seconds to place 6th but her time was just good enough to qualify as one of the fastest losers.

Nigeria’s second representative, Tobi Amusan was more convincing in her own heat as she picked an automatic slot in tonight’s semi-finals by placing 3rd with a time of 12.97 seconds.

[PHOTOS] Athlete Deborah John Injured At World Championships

Trinidad and Tobago athlete Deborah John was treated by medical staff at the IAAF World Championships after a heavy fall she sustained during heats for the women’s 100 metre hurdles on Friday.

John had to be carried away on a stretcher after receiving medical attention on the track for 10 minutes following her fall at the fifth hurdle in the final heat.

Medical officials later reported that she was fine after treatment.

See photos below:

 

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