maandag 2 februari 2009

Steve Hooker - 6m01

Another great performance by Australian Steve Hooker this weekend. In New-York he broke the American All-comers record with 6m01 and attempted the world record height of 6m16 3 times. Mr Bubka can still relax and keep his status as none of the attempts were really close, but you must admit that Hooker’s pole vaulting was pretty impressive. Last year’s Olympic Champion has been training hard over the winter, or should I say summer. His life changed 180° since winning the first Australian field medal in decades and apparently he also changed the event a bit. This photo looks awesome. Pole vaulting in the water, it doesn’t seem like it will be an official event any time soon but you must say that it looks pretty cool in this picture!

maandag 26 januari 2009

German Fernandez world junior record

Teen sensation German Fernandez is stepping it up. German was hyped by Americans 2 years ago after the world Junior Championships and has since shown promise on a worldwide level. Last weekend he broke the (unofficial) world junior indoor mile record. A great performance for somebody who was just trying out his first indoor meet! With his world record of 3.56.50 German makes people smile and hope. America may have his next long distance champion. For a country that rules the world in the sprints and jumps but lacks confidence in the longer distances, German may bring a breath of fresh air for the new generation. He is an inspiration already, let's hope he keeps up the good work transfering into the senior ranks in a few years.

What I love about this picture is German's face. He clearly enjoys running even though he must be under pressure for the competition he is running in. It looks like running is second nature for this guy. The world may turn around, this boy will still be running with pride and joy.

dinsdag 20 januari 2009

CISA Kids 2009

The IAAF officially started its new kids tour, the CISA Kids 2009. This education-through-sport programme was launched in Sangalkam, Senegal last week. Its a sporting, artistic, and educational programme for elementary school students. The kids had the possibility to run 2 XC races in Sangalkam. Both the boys and the girls race was run in front of officials and sport autorities, giving them the possibility to show their potential and talents. It's not a only a great event for african kids, it also produced some fabulous pictures. The picture above was taken during the girls XC race. The girl in front seems like she is really enjoying the race even though they had to run quite a distance. It's good to see athletics being promoted all over the world. Hopefully one of these kids will manage to improve upon his future thanks to the sports, and even more so I hope all of these kids had a wonderful time going out there and be in the spotlight for only a day.

donderdag 8 januari 2009

XC Snowstorm

My heart has never been in XC. As a kid I was pushed into it weekly and I just hated it. I just couldnt understand how the other kids survived going that fast in the cold and wind and rain and snow. After being thrown into it for such a long time I can't deny my respect for those who have managed to survive all their race through the wind and cold and rain and storm. I firsthandedly witnessed how harsh and destroying a XC race can be. You are being pushed from start till finish and only the very best can conquer a top position. When I saw this photo of a XC race in Italy this weekend I couldnt help but being overwhelmed by what I saw. These athletes are used to harsh conditions but a XC snowstorm race can't be something they are used to training in. Not even to mention the african athletes who have hardly ever seen snow in their lives. Nothing but respect for these athletes who just went out there, got their running shoes and clothes on and performed with the heart of a lion and the soul of a warrior. Enjoy this extraordinary picture, with special thanks to photorun.

zondag 28 december 2008

Pictures of the year...Off the track!

Carolina Klüft
Usain Bolt

Yelena Isinbayeva

With the end of the year fast approaching I want to put the spotlight on those athletes who provided me with numerous possibilities of putting up a fantastic athletics photo on my blog. And great athletics photos aren't always taken on the track. Athlete don't nececarelly look outstanding while in action. Over the last few months I have found some pictures of athletes that were absolutely astonishing though, not taken on the track at all. Not even in practice or in the mids of their activities as an athlete. Several athletes have been working as real, big time models after their hours. And proof has been given that some of these top runners are not only gifted athletes but also know how to work the camera. This all let to some surprising but amazing pictures of today's elite athletes.

maandag 15 december 2008

Where is the competition?

Surprise, surprise, who won the 15th SPAR European Cross Country Championships for men? Right, Sergiy Lebid. Again.

Lebid brought his amazing winning streak on 8 yesterday in Brussels. It was another smooth and sound victory for the Ukrainian who seems to be unbeatable when put on the grass/mud of a European cross country course. 8 wins is absolutely incredible in a competitive and fierce branch of athletics. You are truly a great competitor if you can perform at the highest level for 8 years in a row. Nothing but respect for this men. However, I wonder, where is the competition at these championships? How come the same man can win a single championship 8 times in a row without hardly being challenged? Is Lebid really such an extraordinary person that nobody on the continent can even come to his knees? Or should we just go ahead and believe the critics who insist that the European Cross Country Championships are nothing more but fast food entertainment for athletics fans in a from competition deprived period? I'm afraid the latter might be closest to the truth, and watching the 15th SPAR European Cross Country championships has unfortunately not been able to change my opinion.

maandag 8 december 2008

Surprise retirement

Tia Hellebaut surprised the world when winning the Olympic high jump gold in Beijing this august. Yesterday, at a press conference with the local media Tia pulled another big upset. Hellebaut, the reigning Olympic and European high jump champion as well as winner of the world indoor hepthatlon gold medal, has decided to put an immediate end to her career. She is 3 months pregnant with her first child and feels she lacks the motivation to continue competing at the highest level. Talking about post Olympic euphoria, coach and parter is the father.
It's a sad day for Belgian athletics as they lose yet again one of their biggest champions. Earlier this season superstar Kim Gevaert had already stepped off the track and into motherhood. I wish both these extraordinary woman all the best in their future endeavours. May they enjoy the same success in their daily life as they have in their respective events.