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September 20, 2017

Idea from Alex: What if Berlin had a countdown clock from 2:02:57?

Alas! The final installment of TLC from my place in New York. Later today, I’ll head to JFK and board a plane Dublin and then Berlin to get ready for my big race on Sunday. As it’s been discussed pretty thoroughly on the site this week, we’re all expecting the world record to fall on Sunday. I’ll let them get out hard ahead of me and if they somehow manage to crash and burn then maybe there’s a chance I can win. No promises though.

Today’s #take. I like this idea that my buddy and former colleague Alex Lohr tweeted out: “Thoughts on having a countdown clock at Berlin? One that goes down from 2:02.57 .. Changes the mindset..” We’ve all been in situations where we’re racing a clock sometimes it’s in racing but then other times it can be something as simple as the ACT or SAT. If there’s a clock that’s winding down, you’re going to give things your best effort. You also know when to execute your strengths. Now, I didn’t get a perfect score on my SAT – far from it – but I feel like in my best testing I was pacing myself and if I was running out of time then you kick and just give it your best. That kind of sounds like a marathon.

A comedic element would be that if the time expires, just stop. Wherever you are, you’re done. Go home. We’ll try again another time but that takes the fun out of crowning a champion and re-writing the all-time lists.

Would you want a shot clock-esque timer during the race? I’d love to hear your thoughts. Tweet at me: @ChrisChavez or shoot me an email [email protected]

Here’s a couple headlines to catch you up on the latest happenings of the track and field world as you sip your coffee:

Feyisa Lilesa and Stanley Biwott added to the Chicago Marathon Field

This confirms what Lilesa told me when I was sitting on his couch in Flagstaff last month. This isn’t going to be a walk in the park for Galen Rupp anymore. With Lilesa, Biwott and world record holder Dennis Kimetto, you’ve got three sub-2:05 guys now in contention for the title I initially figured that because it’s a post-Olympic year and it’s always nice to drum up interest in running, plus it’s a Nike-sponsored race, that Rupp could end the drought against a watered down field. Doesn’t look like it’ll be as easy anymore. A funny moment came in my conversation with Lilesa when somehow Meb Keflezighi came up in conversation. Lilesa thought that Meb was retired and then I told him how the plan is for just one more marathon in New York City to make it 26 in his career. That got him thinking how many he had done. He didn’t know. So we fired up his Tilastopaja profile and he cracked up when he realized that he’s been in 20 marathons and just a couple halves. Lilesa has 26.2 experience in Chicago from his second place finish in 2012 but then an unfortunate DNF in 2014. He laughed when I asked him why he cramped up so bad in London and he said he just didn’t get enough fluids in him. (Note: He’s doesn’t drink Gatorade or any of the new advanced drinks while racing. Lilesa just drinks…water. I thought that was wild.) If he can get over the cramping and some minor calf issues then I think he can be a factor for the win. More on Biwott, Rupp and more when we shift our focus to Chicago.

Oscar Pistorius: The Movie is coming soon

Oscar Pistorius: Blade Runner Killer sounds like a summer blockbuster and not a Lifetime real movie. Am I going to watch it? Totally. The movie is reportedly told from the viewpoint of the late Reeva Steenkamp and her mother so that should be interesting. I don’t know much about this Andreas Damm fella who is playing Pistorius but he has a similar look. I would’ve suggested Guy Pearce or Jamie Dornan.

IAAF’s Sergey Bubka faces investigation on payment to disgraced Balakhnichev

It’s been a while since we got an IAAF corruption story and it’s now the track offseason so I guess this is one way to stay in the headlines. Don’t forget Sergey Bubka could’ve been the IAAF President if he was not beat by Seb Coe in the election.

Ryan Hall is coaching high school track

Back in April, I was walking around the Boston Marathon expo and crossed paths with Ryan Hall. It’s the same guy who holds the fastest time by an American on the historic course yet no one batted an eye. He’s put on so much muscle that it’s the ultimate disguise. He still draws a crowd at his respective sponsors’ booths but you didn’t necessarily need to wait on line if you just happened to be walking around Boylston and saw the same but with just added weight. This is a good story because for a while it seemed like Hall was just ready to move on totally from running aside from helping coach and train his wife. He’s found a good way to give back to the sport that continues to embrace him. It’s just harder to get your arms around him now.

Sandi Morris Can Sing!

I’ll leave you on your Thursday with this video of Sandi Morris singing from her Youtube page.

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