USATF News & Notes: Bernard Lagat becomes a US citizen

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    Lagat becomes U.S. citizen

    Two-time Olympic 1,500m medalist Bernard Lagat of Kenya has become a U.S. citizen, the runner announced on Wednesday.

    A resident of Tucson, Ariz., Lagat issued a statement regarding his decision to become a U.S. citizen. “I thought long and hard before changing my nationality but, at the age of 30, I have to look to my future, after my running career has come to an end,” Lagat said.

    “I hope to continue running at the very highest level until at least the 2008 Olympics. In the short term, I realize that changing my nationality makes me ineligible to compete at the 2005 World Championships, but I look forward to trying to run as fast as possible in other meetings this summer, with the aim of inspiring and uplifting Kenyan and American athletics fans alike.”

    A U.S. resident since 1996 and a graduate of Washington State University, Lagat last competed for his native Kenya on August 24, 2004. IAAF rules in effect at the time of Lagat’s new citizenship on March 29 indicate that an athlete changing national affiliation must wait three years since last competing for his native country before competing for a new country. However, rules also allow for the wait to be shortened to one year if the former federation agrees to an early release.

    Lagat will compete in the 5,000 meters this weekend at the Mt. SAC Relays in Walnut, Calif.

    USATF announces Annual Meeting theme contest

    USA Track & Field would like to enlist your help this year in designating the theme and logo design for the 2005 Annual Meeting (Jacksonville, Florida; Nov. 30-Dec. 4)

    Please submit your ideas for this year’s theme by May 15.

    Previous themes were:2004 – “One Team One Dream”2003 – “25 Years of Excellence”2002 – “These Are the Days to Remember”

    And–if you have a creative flair–feel free to submit a design that incorporates your theme and the USATF logo.

    The winning entrant receives free registration to this year’s Annual Meeting, along with an assortment of USATF apparel, recognition at the Opening General Session and one free hotel night at our headquarters hotel, the Hyatt Regency Jacksonville. In the case of multiple entries with the winning theme, one of those entries will be drawn at random to determine the winner.

    Submission deadline is May 15, 2005. Please email your submission to [email protected], or mail it to: USATF Annual Meeting, One RCA Dome, Suite 140, Indianapolis, IN 46225; Attn: Theme Contest.

    Preliminary Annual Meeting information has been posted at

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