May 29th, 2020
Major Decisions On the Line For the Majors
Boston Marathon, one of the “Marathon Majors”, is cancelled, while four others are closely watching the progress of coronavirus.
The Abbott World Marathon Majors, consisting of six of the largest marathons in the world, are having a hard year due to the pandemic affecting the whole world. Tokyo Marathon, the first event of the series in 2020, was held on 1 March, but limited to elite athletes only. Another spring event, the Boston Marathon was postponed from 20 April to 14 September, but it is announced on 28 May that the Boston Mayor cancelled the race as it is not yet “feasible to have a mass participation road running event”. The Boston Athletic Association has announced that the 124th edition of the Boston Marathon will be held as a virtual event.
The London Marathon, moved to 4 October from its traditional date, that is the last Sunday of April, is still in uncertainty. The Race Director issued a statement on 20 May mentioning that it is “not certain if the event can go ahead or, if it can, in what form it can take place”. The next update on the London Marathon is due to 21 June.
It was announced in early May that the Berlin Marathon could not take place on 27 September as planned, with no new date determined. According to what was posted on the event website on 27 May, the fate of this year’s race is still unknown. The Chicago Marathon, scheduled to 11 October, and the New York Marathon to be held on 1 November are continuing their preparations, however, both events advise the registrants to follow the updates as they get closer to the race.
May 18th, 2020
Treadmill Records On Target
With no racing opportunities during the time of coronavirus, ultra-runners keep challenging the treadmill world records at home.
As the races around the globe are cancelled or postponed due to the pandemic, some ultra distance runners chose to push their limits on the treadmills at their homes. A few of the “treadmill world records”, which are not ratified by any sports governing body but only included in the Guinness Book of Records, are improved significantly in the period.
Zach Bitter, an ultramarathon runner from the USA, broke the 100-mile (161km) treadmill world record in 12:09:15 on 16 May. The 34-year old cut more than 23 minutes off the previous record of 12:32:26 held by Canadian Dave Proctor. Proctor’s 24-hour treadmill record of 260.4km was also broken by Vito Intini of Italy, who ran 265.2km.
The 50km world record, one of the most contested runs on the treadmill, has been broken twice in the last three months. Germany’s Florian Neuschwander finished in 2:57:25 at the end of February to beat the US runner Mario Mendoza’s world record of 2:59:03. On the 16th of April, Swiss orienteering European and world champion Matthias Kyburz ran a new record time of 2:56:35 while in quarantine. Kyburz averaged 3:30 per kilometre for the full distance, passing the 20km in 1:10:48 and the marathon in 2:29:10.
Another treadmill record in the Guinness Book of Records, the 50-mile (80.4km) set in 4:57:25 by Canadian Jacob Puzey in 2016, remains unbroken to date.
May 16th, 2020
Entries Open For Oceanman
Registration for the Oceanman Open Water Swimming Race in Alanya is in progress. The event was rescheduled to 7-8 November.
Initially planned to be organised in 18 cities in different countries this year, the Turkey stage of the Oceanman championships could not be held on the original dates of 9-10 May due to the coronavirus outbreak while four of the races around the world were cancelled. The races in Alanya on 7-8 November will gather swimmers of all ages. On Saturday, November the 7th, participants of 7 to 14 years of age will be the first group to jump into the water for the Oceankids race over a distance of 500m. Oceankids will be followed by the Oceanteam, a challenge for teams of three members, each to swim 750m. The closing race of the day is the 2km Oceanman Sprint. On Sunday morning, Keykubat and Cleopatra beaches will host the 5km and 10km races in which there will be master classifications up to over 60 years.
The online entry form for the Oceanman Turkey can be accessed at https://trchallenges.com.
May 9th, 2020
Pandemic Caused Running Boom
Surveys show that number of runners increased during coronavirus restrictions and most members will not return when gyms reopen.
As the governments implemented series of preventive measures due to the global crisis, gyms were also shut down temporarily. US-based company RunRepeat conducted a worldwide research on how the physical activity routines have changed during these difficult times. Two different surveys proved that, as a consequence of running outdoors being commonly allowed, many people began running regularly, and those who were previously running regularly increased their frequencies. On the other hand, almost half of the gym members are not planning to gyms when they reopen.
According to the findings of the first survey with 12,913 participants from 139 countries, runners who normally participated only once or twice a week before coronavirus increased their daily runs by 117% on average. Those previously running up to 3 times a week, reported an increase of 55% on average. Avid runners, who had been running four or more days a week, decreased their efforts by 9% on average.
The second survey, answered by 10,824 gym members from 116 countries, showed that 46.67% of members are not likely return to their gyms upon reopening. 36.57% of those who exercised regularly before the coronavirus crisis have already cancelled or are considering cancelling their memberships.
Runners who increased their training frequencies and a part of those who began running recently are anticipated to consider participating in road races once the “new normal” sets in.
May 8th, 2020
Guidelines For Triathlon Organisers
As the sports world prepares for the new era after coronavirus, International Triathlon Union posted guidelines for organisers.
“World Triathlon Covid-19 Prevention Guidelines for Event Organisers” is compiled by the International Triathlon Union (ITU) with feedback from its Technical, Medical, Athletes and Coaches committees as well as the recommendations for social gatherings from the World Health Organization. The Guidelines include valuable advice on health measures for international events in a wide range of areas from the airport transfers to the post-race zones. A pre-event questionnaire for the participants is also recommended by the ITU.
The 28-page Guidelines can be reached through this link.