Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Lagat earns another USATF Athlete of the Week honor, plus other news & links...

Bernard Lagat, the Washington State University hall of famer was named USA Track & Field's Athlete of the Week after winning the men's 3,000 and 5,000m over the weekend at the IAAF Continental Cup in Split, Croatia.

The 2007 1,500 and 5,000 World Outdoor champion, Lagat kicked a 51-second final lap to win a tactical men's 5,000m Saturday in 13:58.23. It was more of the same Sunday night, as he surged over the final 80m to win the 3,000m in 7:54.75, making him the only individual double winner in Split. Along with his 1,500m win at the World Cup in Madrid eight years ago, Lagat became the first athlete to collect victories at a World or Continental Cup in three different events.

In some news that we missed over the last few days, former Washington Huskies Mike Sayenko and Jake Schmitt (left/photo by Paul Merca) finished ninth and eleventh in the USA 20K road championships in New Haven, CT on Labor Day.

Sayenko finished ninth in a time of 1:01:00, while Schmitt, who returned to the Bay Area after graduating from the UW, finished eleventh in 1:01:42. Schmitt is currently training for next month's Chicago Marathon.

Complete results from the USA 20K championships can be accessed here.

For former Husky Ingvill Måkestad, the outdoor season isn't over yet, as she will race in the Notturna di Milano meet Thursday, where she will run the 800 meters and look to lower her personal best and Norwegian national record of 1:59.82, set last week in Zagreb, Croatia.

The meet's web site can be accessed here.

Finally, here's a link to an Associated Press story on USA Track & Field CEO Doug Logan, whose job is reportedly on the line as the USATF board of directors meets this weekend in Las Vegas.

Multiple Olympic champion Carl Lewis spoke out in support of Logan, telling AP writer Eddie Pells, "I love Doug Logan. He's the best thing they ever could've done for the sport.  But the reality is, when you have a dysfunctional organization, you can see the difficulty people can have turning it around. If the volunteers would get out of the way, let Doug do his thing, let his vision push forward, it would happen. But we have a dysfunctional organization and it's hard to get anything done."

He said volunteers in key positions at USA Track and Field keep the organization from functioning the way it should.

"There's no plan," he said. "The plan is to stay where we are because it's fun, it's OK and I'm important," Lewis said. "And they see someone like Doug, who has everything to take it to the next level, and they say, 'Wait a minute here. There's actually somebody doing something right. What are you doing?'

"The key to that is it's being run by people who don't understand anything outside their own zip code."

You can read the whole story here.

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