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Twee marathons is teveel

21 januari 2014 (0 reacties)

For Two Elite Runners, Two Big Races Too Many


Paula Radcliffe rechts traint even samen met Mary Wittenberg (li), directeur van de New York City Marathon.

Door Frank Litsky

With the possibility of two of the fastest — and most marketable — marathon runners going head-to-head this fall, the directors of three of the worlds top races are vying for the chance to provide the stage.

De kanshebsters
Radcliffe, 32, owns four of the five fastest marathon times, including the world record, 2 hours 15 minutes 25 seconds, and is one of the few athletes in the sport with international renown. Kastor, 33, won a bronze medal at the 2004 Olympic Games in Athens and last month set the American mark, 2:19:36, in winning the London Marathon, making a showdown with Radcliffe this fall even more coveted. Creating additional intrigue is the prospect that Catherine Ndereba of Kenya, who has run 2:18:47 and won the Boston Marathon four times and Chicago twice, could be recruited into the field. Elite marathoners generally run one race in the spring and one in the fall. So if Kastor and Radcliffe run one this fall, they will probably choose among Berlin, on Sept. 24; Chicago, on Oct. 22; and New York City, on Nov. 5. Those races, with Boston and London in April, are part of the World Marathon Majors, a series of blue-ribbon races that will award $1 million in bonuses each year to the overall leaders.

Onderhandelingen
“Weve negotiated with them,” said Mary Wittenberg, the director of the New York City Marathon, who made a sales pitch to Radcliffe during a morning jog in Manhattan last Tuesday. “We have a deal in front of Deena, and were making an offer to Paula. We told Paula we think it would be the match of the century if we get Paula and Deena to head the field. She sounds enthusiastic and things seem to be going well, but I have no indication what either of them will do.”Neither does Carey Pinkowski, the director of the Chicago Marathon. He said he had talked to Radcliffe and Gary Lough, her husband and manager. Pinkowski said that shortly after the Chicago race last year, he sent Radcliffe an offer for this year. “I talked to Ray Flynn two weeks ago, and were very optimistic about Deena,” he added, referring to Kastors agent. “If she wants to push her American record even farther down, Chicago or Berlin is the place to be because the courses are so fast. Deena has had great success in Chicago. She has a standing invitation, but weve made no offer yet.”

Geld niet het belangrijkste
Radcliffe, who is recovering from minor surgery to her right foot, seems inclined to run against Kastor. “I love to go head-to-head with people,” she said in an e-mail interview. “Competition is what sport is about.”But Lough said a decision would not be made until Radcliffe had fully recovered. “She has resumed training but is still heavily cross-training,” he said. “There is obviously a lot of interest in a race against Deena.”Flynn said in a recent telephone interview that “the decision may depend on whos in the race,” seemingly an indication that Kastor has her sights set on a matchup with Radcliffe.Money may be a major factor in determining where Radcliffe and Kastor end up in the fall. Runners on their level make more money in appearance fees than in prize money. None of the race directors would say how much appearance money they would offer. When Radcliffe won in London in 2005, there were reports that she made $500,000.”I think that is a reasonable number,” Pinkowski said. “I wouldnt doubt that when Paula wins London and you add in the bonuses and prize money, she would well exceed $500,000. Shes that popular there.”But these two runners — Paula and Deena — are really unique. Money is secondary. Money doesnt drive them. When you run fast, the money comes.”

Verschillende parkoersen
A high-level marathon may pay upfront money to 50 or more elite men and women, and Berlin, Chicago and New York City are pursuing runners from the same talent pool. But Wittenberg said she did not think the bidding process for Radcliffe and Kastor would come down to money.”They deserve as much as we can pay them,” she said. “Theyre our sports LeBron James, our Tiger Woods. Deena is the Phil Mickelson who is now coming on.”At the 2004 New York City Marathon, Kastor dropped out at Mile 16 with an injury, and Radcliffe went on to win. Since that race, Kastor has won both marathons she has entered — Chicago last year and London this year. Radcliffe was not in either field.”This is very big because Deena has improved so much,” said Mark Milde, the director of the Berlin Marathon. “But getting runners like this depends on what they want to achieve. We have things to offer, like our flat course. I strongly believe it is faster than Chicagos. In 2003, Paul Tergat chose to run Berlin rather than Chicago because our course is faster, and he broke the mens world record.”
Milde said he received a commitment recently from Mizuki Noguchi of Japan, who won the womens gold medal in Athens and won Berlin last year in 2:19:12.”I hear that Deena is very competitive and looking for the challenge,” Milde said. “Noguchi versus Deena might be a more interesting race. It would be tough for us to get all three, but it would be a great race, wouldnt it?”Chicago and Berlin have flat courses. New York does not. Radcliffe said the terrain would not necessarily influence her decision because “ultimately it comes down to where I want to run.”Flynn said Kastor would make the decision where she would run.”They are three different marathons, three different types of courses, three different fields,” Flynn said. “Its a business and athletic matter. Shes won Chicago and hasnt won New York, so there are a lot of factors. For now, shes thinking about the track races she plans to run in Europe this summer.”Meanwhile, the race directors are hoping and waiting. “I think true champions always want to run against each other,” Pinkowski said. “I think Deena can go a lot faster, and I think she looks at Paula as motivation to go faster.”

© New York Times

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Twee marathons is teveel

1 juni 2006 (0 reacties)

For Two Elite Runners, Two Big Races Too Many


Paula Radcliffe rechts traint even samen met Mary Wittenberg (li), directeur van de New York City Marathon.

Door Frank Litsky

With the possibility of two of the fastest — and most marketable — marathon runners going head-to-head this fall, the directors of three of the worlds top races are vying for the chance to provide the stage.

De kanshebsters
Radcliffe, 32, owns four of the five fastest marathon times, including the world record, 2 hours 15 minutes 25 seconds, and is one of the few athletes in the sport with international renown. Kastor, 33, won a bronze medal at the 2004 Olympic Games in Athens and last month set the American mark, 2:19:36, in winning the London Marathon, making a showdown with Radcliffe this fall even more coveted. Creating additional intrigue is the prospect that Catherine Ndereba of Kenya, who has run 2:18:47 and won the Boston Marathon four times and Chicago twice, could be recruited into the field. Elite marathoners generally run one race in the spring and one in the fall. So if Kastor and Radcliffe run one this fall, they will probably choose among Berlin, on Sept. 24; Chicago, on Oct. 22; and New York City, on Nov. 5. Those races, with Boston and London in April, are part of the World Marathon Majors, a series of blue-ribbon races that will award $1 million in bonuses each year to the overall leaders.

Onderhandelingen
“Weve negotiated with them,” said Mary Wittenberg, the director of the New York City Marathon, who made a sales pitch to Radcliffe during a morning jog in Manhattan last Tuesday. “We have a deal in front of Deena, and were making an offer to Paula. We told Paula we think it would be the match of the century if we get Paula and Deena to head the field. She sounds enthusiastic and things seem to be going well, but I have no indication what either of them will do.”Neither does Carey Pinkowski, the director of the Chicago Marathon. He said he had talked to Radcliffe and Gary Lough, her husband and manager. Pinkowski said that shortly after the Chicago race last year, he sent Radcliffe an offer for this year. “I talked to Ray Flynn two weeks ago, and were very optimistic about Deena,” he added, referring to Kastors agent. “If she wants to push her American record even farther down, Chicago or Berlin is the place to be because the courses are so fast. Deena has had great success in Chicago. She has a standing invitation, but weve made no offer yet.”

Geld niet het belangrijkste
Radcliffe, who is recovering from minor surgery to her right foot, seems inclined to run against Kastor. “I love to go head-to-head with people,” she said in an e-mail interview. “Competition is what sport is about.”But Lough said a decision would not be made until Radcliffe had fully recovered. “She has resumed training but is still heavily cross-training,” he said. “There is obviously a lot of interest in a race against Deena.”Flynn said in a recent telephone interview that “the decision may depend on whos in the race,” seemingly an indication that Kastor has her sights set on a matchup with Radcliffe.Money may be a major factor in determining where Radcliffe and Kastor end up in the fall. Runners on their level make more money in appearance fees than in prize money. None of the race directors would say how much appearance money they would offer. When Radcliffe won in London in 2005, there were reports that she made $500,000.”I think that is a reasonable number,” Pinkowski said. “I wouldnt doubt that when Paula wins London and you add in the bonuses and prize money, she would well exceed $500,000. Shes that popular there.”But these two runners — Paula and Deena — are really unique. Money is secondary. Money doesnt drive them. When you run fast, the money comes.”

Verschillende parkoersen
A high-level marathon may pay upfront money to 50 or more elite men and women, and Berlin, Chicago and New York City are pursuing runners from the same talent pool. But Wittenberg said she did not think the bidding process for Radcliffe and Kastor would come down to money.”They deserve as much as we can pay them,” she said. “Theyre our sports LeBron James, our Tiger Woods. Deena is the Phil Mickelson who is now coming on.”At the 2004 New York City Marathon, Kastor dropped out at Mile 16 with an injury, and Radcliffe went on to win. Since that race, Kastor has won both marathons she has entered — Chicago last year and London this year. Radcliffe was not in either field.”This is very big because Deena has improved so much,” said Mark Milde, the director of the Berlin Marathon. “But getting runners like this depends on what they want to achieve. We have things to offer, like our flat course. I strongly believe it is faster than Chicagos. In 2003, Paul Tergat chose to run Berlin rather than Chicago because our course is faster, and he broke the mens world record.”
Milde said he received a commitment recently from Mizuki Noguchi of Japan, who won the womens gold medal in Athens and won Berlin last year in 2:19:12.”I hear that Deena is very competitive and looking for the challenge,” Milde said. “Noguchi versus Deena might be a more interesting race. It would be tough for us to get all three, but it would be a great race, wouldnt it?”Chicago and Berlin have flat courses. New York does not. Radcliffe said the terrain would not necessarily influence her decision because “ultimately it comes down to where I want to run.”Flynn said Kastor would make the decision where she would run.”They are three different marathons, three different types of courses, three different fields,” Flynn said. “Its a business and athletic matter. Shes won Chicago and hasnt won New York, so there are a lot of factors. For now, shes thinking about the track races she plans to run in Europe this summer.”Meanwhile, the race directors are hoping and waiting. “I think true champions always want to run against each other,” Pinkowski said. “I think Deena can go a lot faster, and I think she looks at Paula as motivation to go faster.”

© New York Times

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