A Boston-to-Beijing connection?

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This topic contains 4 replies, has 2 voices, and was last updated by  GTF 10 years, 11 months ago.

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  • #7366

    GTF
    Member

    Was Robert Cheruiyot's runaway victory enough to earn him a spot on Kenya's marathon team for this summer's Beijing Olympics?

    “If I get the chance, I will be happy,” said last year's World Marathon Majors winner, who was bypassed for the 2004 squad. “I will produce a good race, as I always do.”

    The consensus, with which Cheruiyot agrees, is that Martin Lel (2:05:15) and Samuel Wanjiru (2:05:24), who finished 1-2 in London April 13, both will be selected. The federation promised that one Boston runner would be picked, without specifying male or female. Since Rita Jeptoo was third in the women's race yesterday, more than a minute behind the winner, Cheruiyot seems the obvious choice.

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  • #25038

    Ryan
    Keymaster

    He would seem to be the obvious choice. If he doesn't make the team, it would be a shame. His resume over the past few years is as good as any Kenyan's and he was definitely the top Kenyan performer at Boston. There shouldn't be any question.

    This is why, even given its flaws, I appreciate the Trials system that the US uses. For better or worse, at least there is no ambiguity. You run one race and you know where you stand.

  • #25039

    GTF
    Member

    Well, as relatively little as USATF devotes to LDR, be glad that there are deep enough pockets in the US to put on OT marathons.  I would guess that KAAA's marathon team selection system is derived primarily due to financial matters rather than any particular philosophical aim.

  • #25040

    Ryan
    Keymaster

    I'm sure you're right. For a country with the resources of Kenya, to hold a marathon just to select the team for the Olympics would be a daunting task.

    Back in the 90s, I seem to recall Boston being the de facto OT marathon for Kenya. This seemed like a good system, though I'm sure the runners and their coaches/agents placed some heat on the officials to open things up so they could go out in search of bigger appearance fees. While I understand the financial difficulty in holding a specific OT race, I think it's too bad they don't use Boston – or London, Chicago, Rotterdam, whatever – as a de facto OT race so everyone can line up and know where they stand.

  • #25041

    GTF
    Member

    That simply seems to be the reality of today's professional marathon climate.  I doubt any one race has the resources to afford (in appearance fees) even all of the top 10 Kenyans, let alone the top 20 or 30.  (Just another reason I see to put in place guidelines to reduce or eliminate appearance fees.)  Japan uses a similar system, though they likely have the resources to stage an OT marathon, and they seem to do a good job in selecting their teams. 

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