THE LATEST in the aches, pains & eligibility departments:
Two more Oregon stars who won NCAA titles in ’21 have turned pro early, joining Cole Hocker: 5000 winner Cooper Teare and Indoor 800 champ Charlie Hunter of Australia. Hunter had only indoor eligibility remaining.
Auburn alum Akeem Bloomfield, 8th in the ’19 WC 400 for Jamaica, says, “Right now I’m 100% healthy.” A 43.94 performer, he lost most of the ’21 season to a bad right hamstring injury.
Spain’s 8:05.69 steeple performer Fernando Carro has had surgery on both Achilles.
Quartermiler Paul Dedewo reports that he is healthy and training again after a year in which he didn’t break 48, saying, “Slowly starting to feel like my old self.”
Former NCAA steeple champion Leah Falland, who had been dealing with a plantar fascia injury all summer, felt her left foot pop while on vacation in Australia “when I lunged to grab a ball in the yard.” She adds, “It stings thinking of the professional opportunities I’ll have to forego these upcoming months. Feeling better is just going to take time.”
Australian steepler Genevieve Gregson ruptured her Achilles in the Tokyo final. Now she says she will switch to the marathon for ’24, analyzing, “I’d rather end on my terms. It might not work. There could be a lot of complications along the way: I don’t run the same, I get too old. I’m aware of all those pitfalls. But I’d rather die trying it than just say my time’s up because I ruptured my Achilles in 2021.”
Jakob Ingebrigtsen had to have two emergency surgeries just before Tokyo, says his father in a new book. The first surgery, in Spain, did not go well, requiring a second procedure in Norway. He gave no further details.
Drew Hunter says that he is still having issues with back spasms. “Definitely not recovered.”
Melat Kejeta, the German who won the World half marathon silver, has been dealing with an Achilles injury.
Russian long jumper Darya Klishina is not completely recovered from her Olympic thigh injury and is keeping her options open: “I’m not making any plans at all now. And because of the injury, and because in our track and field, not everything is as rosy and beautiful as we would like. Therefore, I will watch how everything develops.”
He may have an Olympic gold now, but Erik Kynard also recently ended up with a case of COVID, tweeting some words of wisdom: “Vaccinated or not, wear a mask. I’m 6-5 fit and in great health it laid me down and it will lay you down.”
High jumper Michael Mason of Canada, 7th in the ’12 Olympics, has retired at 35.
After twice competing in the Olympic Trials steeple Emily Oren has said farewell to pro running. “I don’t like to say I’m quitting or ‘retiring’ because I’ll always be a runner. I’m just dropping the word ‘professional’ in front of it,” she said on Instagram.
Allie Ostrander announced that she has ended her contract with Brooks and is withdrawing from professional running (see “Last Lap”).
At 37, Shannon Rowbury has revealed that the ’22 season probably won’t find her on the track, with child number two expected in the spring.
Marathoner Scott Smith has retired at age 35. He ranked No. 7 among Americans in ’17 and ran his best of 2:09:46 last year.
British sprinter Danny Talbot, who ran on the gold medal 4×1 at the ’17 Worlds, has retired at age 30.
Filippo Tortu, the anchor on Italy’s gold-winning 4×1 in Tokyo, recently tested positive for C19 again. His current case is asymptomatic. He had been ill with the virus last January.
Romanian 800 record holder Catalin Tecuceanu (1:44.93) has received Italian citizenship.
French hurdle super-prospect Sasha Zhoya lost some of his preparation time for the indoor season because of a minor foot injury.
Belarusian vaulter Angelina Zhuk, 8th in Tokyo, is switching her allegiance to Moldova.
6 years — Halima Hachlaf (Morocco, 1500);
4 years — Abeba Gebremeskel (Ethiopia, marathon). □