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Euro XC Championship Men's Race. Is this bad for athletics?

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  • Euro XC Championship Men's Race. Is this bad for athletics?

    3 guys ran away with it from the very beginning and made the rest of the runners irrelevant in the individual race. The only problem was that they were Kenyans and Ethiopians "representing" Turkey and Spain. The camera could not focus on any actual Europeans. It was weird and not very entertaining, though I hate to admit I am a fan of Kaya, the smallest one in the picture. Do you think this is a bad thing, or does it merely increase the quality of the race fields?
    Bolt's last year...and my last year as a track fan, it's been fun

  • #2
    Just another nail in the T&F coffin.

    How many people are interested in watching feeds of African sports?

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    • #3
      Things like this just further discourage white Europeans from taking up the sport. They are already running slower than people did in the 1970s (remember the 1978 EC 10000, with 9th placer running 27:40?), and things are only going to get worse if they can't even hope to win medals at the European level.
      Było smaszno, a jaszmije smukwijne...

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      • #4
        Well, Pavey acquitted herself well. But, yes, I think that it does make it easier for people to thing that the required step is too likely to be beyond them and they go elsewhere, get a normal life, etc.

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        • #5
          The IAAF and the IOC should bring in a rule that says you must be a citizen for at least 5 years before you can represent any country and you must not have represented another country within that time frame. The choice of a 5 year time frame is deliberate so as to ensure the athlete will miss at least one Olympic Games.

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          • #6
            Originally posted by Tuariki View Post
            The IAAF and the IOC should bring in a rule that says you must be a citizen for at least 5 years before you can represent any country and you must not have represented another country within that time frame. The choice of a 5 year time frame is deliberate so as to ensure the athlete will miss at least one Olympic Games.
            This is a great idea. I think that would be perfect.
            Bolt's last year...and my last year as a track fan, it's been fun

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            • #7
              All good in theory. But what about genuine refugees? Or even migrants? Should we really be toying with people's lives and livelihoods simply because we'd prefer to see a few white distance runners? One only has to travel in Europe to realise that there in fact a lot of African folks living, working and struggling in almost every country.

              That some earn their bucks (and thrills) donning the singlets on their new homelands is not a 100% bad thing (or even a 25% bad thing!). Sure, when watching the Euro Champs this year there were a few times I did a doubletake, but when you look into the back stories of many of these athletes it's not a mercenary or opportunistic tale, but rather one of grasping at the best option they have in new home countries that don't have great track records (excuse the pun) of opening up job opportunities for migrants of the wrong colour/accent.

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              • #8
                There is nothing particularly special about these runners and historically they could have been thrashed by many 'native' european runners. The problem is they have all given up !!

                We shouldn't necessarily be looking a restricting participation from other countries but encourage other runners to take part.
                i deserve extra credit

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                • #9
                  I agree mump boy. I love the anecdote of Frank Shorter and Steve Prefontaine doing some altitude training in the winter before the 1972 Olympics. They were out on yet another long run in the snow at 9,000 feet, and if I remember the story correctly, Pre grumbled to FS about the pain, etc . . . and Frank replied along the lines that no one on earth was training as hard as they. And there it is in a nutshell. From Ron Hill to Frank Shorter to Lasse Viren to Jon Treacy and Carlos Lopes, their success on the world stage came as a result of steady hard training, with a close knit support team. Or as the book about Kenyan distance running says; Train Hard, Win Easy.

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                  • #10
                    I note that alongside the invasion of East Africans into Europe is the fact that Cross Country STILL does not allow women full parity with men. The Junior (Under 20) women's Championship was won in a time under 15 minutes, suggesting a distance of around 4km. That is a ridiculously short time for elite juniors to be racing. Senior women race 10,000m on the track and Marathons on the road, yet in nearly every Cross Country Championship, their distance is 8km (which is around 47m short of 5 miles), whilst the men compete over 12 km (7 miles, 803 yards, according to TFN's BIG GOLD BOOK). Why are senior women not allowed to race over 10 or 12km on cross country courses, exactly as the men do?

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                    • #11
                      My problem is that it's the Euro XC championships and there is nothing European about these runners. This is just "I'll wear the jersey of the highest bidder" and I think in Bezabeh's case it was "I got caught doping, so I'll run for Spain now." The European Championship races should be a chance for European athletes to showcase themselves. I like Tuariki's idea because once you live somewhere 5 years, that pretty much is your nationality. What if the US did what Bahrain and other countries do and Asbel Kiprop won the USATF 1500 in two years? That's not good man.
                      Bolt's last year...and my last year as a track fan, it's been fun

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                      • #12
                        Originally posted by AS View Post
                        All good in theory. But what about genuine refugees? Or even migrants? Should we really be toying with people's lives and livelihoods simply because we'd prefer to see a few white distance runners?
                        You could still compete in the diamond league or the road-racing circuit presumably.

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                        • #13
                          My suggested rules are to stop rich countries "stealing" athletes in order to win medals. I believe charity starts at home and therefore a country's own citizens should not be shafted by mercenary imports. I am very supportive of migrants being able to gain citizenship - but only after they have demonstrated a commitment to the new country.

                          There should not be special citizenship legislation enacted just so certain national association presidents can lie back on their gold tasseled couches basking in the masturbatory glory of the magnificent job they reckon they have done by having "their" citizen athletes win medals.

                          In Zealand you have to wait 5 years to be granted citizenship after you have gained residence status. And you must be physically present in New Zealand for at least 6 months in each of those 5 years. This should be the IAAF and IOC rule.

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                          • #14
                            Any women's race (aside from the marathon) over 3000 meters is an absolute snoozer for me.

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                            • #15
                              Originally posted by spammer View Post
                              My problem is that it's the Euro XC championships and there is nothing European about these runners.
                              Apart from their passports !!
                              i deserve extra credit

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