ON YOUR MARKS — January

Emily Sisson missed the American Record in the half-marathon by only 5 seconds in Houston. (VICTOR SAILER/PHOTO RUN)

THE NCAA EAST REGIONAL, which in several past years has gotten $200,000 in subsidies from the Jacksonville Tourist Development Council, finds host school North Florida scrambling this year after officials limited the event to $75,000 in grants. Under new criteria, the meet is no longer considered a “signature” event…

Franklin Field, the home of the historic Penn Relays, will be celebrating its 125th anniversary this year. Special events are scheduled throughout the year, with some falling during this year’s relays…

Distance runner Alexi Pappas will be releasing a new movie. Olympic Dreams is about a slightly insecure Nordic skier (played by Pappas) who meets a volunteer dentist at the Winter Olympics in ’18…

Road runner Parker Stinson is now being coached by Dathan Ritzenhein…

Portugal’s Marta Pen Freitas, the ’16 NCAA 1500 champ for Mississippi State, has joined the Brooks Beasts…

Michele Lee, who ran 2:30:32 at the California International Marathon, has signed with Hansons-Brooks Original Distance Project…

Georgetown alum Amos Bartelsmeyer, who recently ran an indoor 3:55.32 mile in Seattle, is planning to try to represent Germany internationally…

Emma Bates, the California International Marathon winner, has signed with Asics…

Hoka One One has brought on four new names including 5-time All-American Matt Baxter of Northern Arizona. Also on the squad now are Kiya Dandena (2:12:56 marathon), Nick Hilton (63:23 HM) and Sid Vaughn (63:36 HM).

High school officials in New York’s Section III took the weekend off in protest after their executive committee switched to an online payment system without their consent and started charging an extra $8.50 for each paper check…

Tommy Leonard, the founder of the Falmouth Road Race, passed away in January. The famed bartender at Boston’s Eliot Lounge set up the initial 7M race between two pubs as a fundraiser for the local girls track team. He became one of the most beloved figures in the road racing community.

Former IAAF Council member Charles Mukora, 83, died in December in Nairobi. He resigned from the IOC in ’99 after being implicated in a bribery scandal.

The NJCAA has added Div. II Women’s XC to its program, starting in the fall of ’20…

Akron canceled its annual Pole Vault Convention, but founder Dennis Mitchell says that he is planning a ’20 edition…

Former 400 hurdle star David Patrick has been hired as the national coach of Malaysia…

Vermont is putting a freeze on new scholarships in track and cross country as the university tightens its belt to pay for a new $95 million athletic center. Before the freeze, the school was only offering 5.9 women’s scholarships and 3.5 men’s…

The USTFCCCA’s Bowerman Awards for ’18 went to Michael Norman and Keturah Orji…

Jackie Joyner-Kersee received the NCAA President’s Gerald R. Ford Award, which honors an individual who has provided significant leadership as an advocate for college sports…

The tamper-proof containers used by WADA for urine samples appear to be anything but, after Norwegian athlete Sondre Guttormsen and his father filmed a video showing him opening the containers with his hands. The Swiss manufacturer said that the UCLA frosh used too much force, which the instructions warn against doing… Uh, “tamper-proof” based on honor system?…

Lolo Jones will be appearing on an upcoming episode of reality show Celebrity Big Brother—the winner will get $250,000…

The demolition of Meadowbank Stadium has begun. The Edinburgh facility hosted the ’70 Commonwealth Games. It is being replaced by a new $58 million facility that will include both indoor and outdoor tracks…

Ireland’s Pierce O’Callaghan has been hired as Director Of Readiness by the Doha ’19 organizing committee. O’Callaghan, who is also part of T&FN’s World Rankings Panel for the walks, was Director Of Operations for London ’17…

Kenyan 400 hurdler Haron Koech is dedicating this season to his brother, Nicholas Bett, who died in a car crash in August. Bett won the ’15 world title in the 400H and Koech says he plans to do the same this year…

Ethiopian coach Haji Adilo has become the Chinese national coach for the middle and long distances. A group of elite Chinese runners has already arrived in Ethiopia to begin training…

A January road 10K in Nyahururu, Kenya, was halted on race day after Athletics Kenya called the police and told them it was unsanctioned. The police made it clear that the finish line of the race, in the stadium, would be off-limits…

The French investigation into IOC corruption has reportedly reached Japan, with French prosecutors indicting Tsunekazu Takeda for authorizing bribes to help secure support for Tokyo’s ’20 bid. Le Monde reports that payments of $2 million were directed by Takeda into a company tied to Papa Massata Diack, the son of then-IAAF president Lamine Diack. Takeda denies that he has been indicted…

A minor figure in the Diack/IAAF corruption case earned a one-week jail sentence. Tan Tong Han, owner of a company named Black Tidings, was sentenced in Hong Kong for lying to investigators about funneling money for Papa Massata Diack…

Tampere, Finland, has dropped its bid to host the ’24 Euro Champs. That leaves Chorzów, Gothenburg and Minsk as the remaining contenders…

The IAAF has now placed air-monitoring systems in stadia in Addis Ababa, Mexico City, Monaco and Sydney, with a goal of eventually putting them in every IAAF-certified facility, some 5,000 worldwide. Noting that the systems may eventually be used to decide on championship sites, IAAF majordomo Seb Coe said, “We want to be able to drive change and some cities might actually be able to bid for events because they have got their quality under control.”…

Big changes in the walks? The IAAF Race Walking Committee is checking with national federations for feedback on making the Olympic distances 10K and 30K, instead of the present 20K and 50K. The committee is also planning the implementation of the “Race Walking Electronic Control System” by ’21. □

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