A round-up of some of the latest news from the world of athletics, including details on European Indoor Championships preparations in Belgrade and results from the Manchester Road Race
Belgrade 2017 in full preparation
With less than 100 days until the European Athletics Indoor Championships begin in Belgrade, preparations are well underway for the country’s biggest ever athletics event which will take place in the Kombank Arena from March 3-5, 2017.
In a press conference held at the venue for the biennial championships on Wednesday, president of the Local Organising Committee Slobodan Brankovic – who won the 400m title at the 1992 European Indoor Championships – addressed the media about the logistical progress of the event as well as one of the legacies of the championships.
To mark the country’s biggest ever athletics event which is set to attract 705 athletes from 48 countries based on preliminary entries, all of the top names in Serbian athletics are targeting the championships as outlined by the secretary of the Serbian Athletics Federation, Slobodan Popovic.
Tickets are now available on the event website. Information from European Athletics.
Ortega aims for Belgrade
Olympic silver medalist at 110m hurdles Orlando Ortega will compete during the indoor season. The former Cuban who represents Spain from this year is also aiming for success at his first European Indoor Championships in Belgrade.
His duel with French hurdlers could be one of the highlights of the championships in Serbia next March.
True and Sisson win Manchester Road Race
While their respective track seasons did not get them to the Rio Olympics, both Ben True and Emily Sisson continued to command respect on the roads this year, winning the 80th Manchester Road Race (7.7 km) in the USA with style.
On a very cold and cloudy New England Thanksgiving Day, True won for the second time in a nail-biting sprint finish over Olympian Leonard Korir, while Sisson got her first Manchester win by a comfortable margin. Both athletes earned $4000 in prize money.
Top two True and Korir were given the same time of 21:31. Briton Chris Thompson was timed in 21:35, followed by Paul Chelimo then Scott Fauble, both timed in 21:29. Aaron Braun took sixth in 21:41. Galen Rupp was 10th after difficulties with breathing because of asthma.
Sisson clocked 24:08 with Sarah Pagano 24:19 in second and Jordan Hasay 24:27 third, with Edna Kiplagat fourth 24:34 and British Olympian Eilish McColgan fifth 24:39. From RRW.
Aman back to his coach
The 2013 world 800m champion Mohammed Aman has decided that he will return back to his previous coach Nigussie Gichamo of Ethiopia, with whom he was a two-time world indoor champion and also a world outdoor champion as well as setting the national record time of 1:42.37.
He is looking to run the indoor season and mix up his distances to include the 1500m as well; his main focus being the outdoor season and the World Championships in London, informs his agent Hussein Makke.
Alcobendas cross country
After winning in Soria last weekend, Uganda’s Timothy Toroitich will be looking for back-to-back wins on Spanish soil in Alcobendas on Sunday (IAAF CC Permit).
Toroitich will face Eritrean Olympians Aron Kifle and Goitom Kifle again along with top steeplechaser Jairus Birech from Kenya and Italy’s Yemaneberhan Crippa.
Top domestic runners in the field include Adel Mechaal, Sergio Sanchez, Carlos Mayo, Alemayehu Bezabeh, Jesus Espana and Ayad Lamdassem.
The favourites in the women’s race are former European cross country champion Fionnuala McCormack from Ireland, Olympic steeplechase finalist Etenesh Diro from Ethiopia and European half-marathon silver medallist Veronica Inglese from Italy.
Trihas Gebre, Nuria Fernandez and Alessandra Aguilar are the top home runners.
Favourites for the women’s race in the Florence Marathon on Sunday are Belarusian Nastassia Ivanova (2:27:24 PB), Kenya’s Winny Jepkorir (2:27:57), Ethiopia’s Bizunesh Urgesa (2:30:00), Ukraine’s Nataliya Lehonkova (2:30:40) and leading Italian Fatna Maraoui (2:30:50).
In the men’s race, Tujuba Megersa (2:09:24) will defend his title against Kenyans Richard Sigei Kiprotich (2:08:28) Charles Cheruiyot (2:09:05) and debutants Kevin Kochei and Vestus Chemjor.
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