Saturday, May 31, 2008

How Far Can You Go? 10th Annual Titus Van Rijn Invitational One-Hour Distance Classic

Get ready to lace-up and hit the local track to see how far you can run in 60 minutes. If it's June, it's time for the Titus Van Rijn Invitational One-Hour Distance Classic, an international festival of local one-hour running events, now in its 10th year. See the specifics below, but the "rules" are really quite simply. Grab some friends and hit the track sometime in June, record how many laps you completed in 60 minutes, and send the results to the event director. You know you've always wondered just how far you could make it; now's the time to find out.

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10th Annual Titus Van Rijn Invitational One-Hour Distance Classic

What: A one-hour footrace
Where: Your local track
When: Anytime between June 1st-30th, 2008

* Your performance must take place on a standard 400 meter/440 yard track. Include partial laps in your final total; estimate distances as accurately as possible within reason.

* Send results to by midnight, 30 June 2008. In your results, please note name, total distance completed (in meters or yards), age, date, and location. We encourage you to include a brief report of your experience for the official race report.

* You may run the event more than once if desired, but only submit your best mark.

* You are encouraged to invite others to participate in the event. In many cases, our address list of past participants is incomplete, so we especially appreciate your forwarding this invitation to past runners not included in the original mailing.

* Complete results and race report will be sent to all participants.

* 'And you can dance…for inspiration' --

World champions in football and baseball celebrate with champagne; the victor at the Indy 500 gets a bottle of milk. At Titus Van Rijn, the celebratory beverage of choice for all participants is black cherry soda. We encourage you to maintain the tradition.

One-Hour Track Records
World, women: 18,340 meters (~11.4 miles)
Tegla Loroupe (Ken), Borgholshausen, Ger 8/7/98
World, men: 21,285m (~13.2 miles)
Haile Gebrselassie (Eth), Ostrava, Czech Republic 6/27/07

U.S., women: 17,273m (~10.7 miles)
Nancy Conz, Amherst, MA 6/25/81
U.S., men: 20,547m (~12.8 miles)
Bill Rodgers (GBTC), Boston, MA 8/9/77

TVR, women: 12,800m (~7.96 miles)
Kate Jennings (WA), Winthrop, WA 6/2/2007

TVR, men: 18,115 (~11.25 miles)
Greg Crowther (WA), Seattle, WA 5/27/2006

Join the fun!

Additional Questions?
Please contact Andy Roth ( or Mike Persick (, TVR Race Directors.

Thursday, May 29, 2008

An Espresso Oasis in the Coffee Waste Lands

Early start times and remote locales are often the death knell for a good cup of coffee the morning of a race. But, with a slick new hand held espresso maker, called the Handpresso, a rich single shot with a nice thick crema is within reach pretty much anywhere you can find some hot water. Sure, it's got a clunky name (must not translate well from the French), and it's pretty pricey ($150), but the prospect of great coffee anytime before, after, and even during a race is just too much for us at Run Junkie to handle (previous post). And we're longingly awaiting the arrival of a Handpresso to put through the paces.

In the mean time, the company site has a nice video of their works in action (video). Seemingly done in homage to porn video, you see that with a few pumps here, a couple turns there, and a dash of hot water, you're well on your way to espresso bliss in the wilds, or anywhere else good coffee is hard to find. Check out the site for more:

Thursday, May 22, 2008

Radcliffe's Stress Fracture Puts Olympic Marathon in Question

A hip injury diagnosed as a femoral stress fracture has put Paula Radcliffe's Olympic marathon in doubt, as reported by (story). The injury to the large bone in her thigh has been painful enough to keep the marathon world record holder on crutches and working out in a pool. With a diagnosis finally in the books, Radcliffe hopes proper treatment will help her complete a build-up to Beijing in August but appears resigned to the distinct possibility that her plans to return to the Olympic marathon in 2008 may ultimately be scuttled. Her injury puts her in esteemed company. Reigning Olympic men's marathon champion, Stefano Baldini, is also suffering from a stress fracture that's put his Olympic preparations in doubt, though not to the same extent as Radcliffe's (previous post).

(Photo by Alan Cordova, used under Creative Commons)

Monday, May 19, 2008

Today's NY Times: Lagat, Lagat's Family, and the Start of the Tevor Graham Doping Trial

High-profile day for running in today's New York Times. There's a short piece on a rough-and-tumble 1500m at the Adidas Track Classic in Carson, CA won by Bernard Lagat (story); a longer piece on the running history of Lagat's family, especially his accomplished older sister (story); and a piece on the queue of elite athletes ready to take the stand in the BALCO doping trial of track coach, Trevor Graham (story).

Friday, May 16, 2008

World Anti-Doping Agency Wants Court Costs for Failed Appeals

The new sheriff in charge of the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) - John Fahey - no longer seems content with simply winning cases against presumably doped athletes. In a dubious act of schadenfreude, he's considering asking that athletes who lose their ultimate appeal to the court of arbitration for sport (CAS) pay WADA's legal fees as well. This prospect is being prominently rolled out with the case of cyclist Floyd Landis, who's awaiting his final appeal to the CAS.

While we at Run Junkie feel strongly that dopers deserve everything they get, adding the prospect of paying WADA's legal fees to the appeals process seems like a move to quash any opposition to their drug-testing results. While doping controls are good, they aren't perfect (see previous post). And it seems unfair to keep a clean athlete with a false positive from seeking appeal simply because the costs of defense have become astronomical. With most pro athletes making much less than folks like Floyd Landis or Marion Jones in her hey day, the fair move seems to be to keep the system as it is.

Monday, May 12, 2008

Bekele to Make Run at Own 10,000 Record at Prefontaine Classic

Not content to rest on his laurels, current 5,000m and 10,000m world record holder, Kenenisa Bekele, will make a go at breaking his own 2005 10,000m record at next month's Prefontaine Classic ( story; meet release). Meet directors looked at decades of data to help choose the optimal time for the attempt, concluding that morning held the best chance to try to topple his already herculean time of 26:17.53.

Monday, May 5, 2008

Flanagan Runs to 10k American Record

Shalane Flanagan broke the women's 10k American record this weekend at the Payton Jordan Cardinal Invitational at Stanford University ( story). Her winning time of 30:34.49, was the quickest in the world so far this year, and bested Deena Kastor's American record set at the same meet in 2002.

Bolt Bolting Toward 100m World Record

Jamaican sprinter, Usain Bolt, posted the second fastest 100 meters of all time on home soil this weekend at the Jamaican International Invitational ( story). Seems a clash of titans is in the offing between Bolt and current world champion, American Tyson Gay, possibly as early as May but definitely by August on the track in Beijing.