BizBuzz: Russia Banned from PyeongChang, USATF Annual Meeting Highlights, and Two Sweet Contests

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News & Notes

The International Olympic Committee (IOC) has banned Russia from the 2018 Winter Olympics in Pyeongchang, following investigations into allegations of state-sponsored doping at the 2014 Games in Sochi. “The Russian Olympic Committee (ROC) has been suspended but the IOC said it will invite Russian clean athletes to compete in February under the name ‘Olympic Athlete from Russia’ (OAR).” It is still yet to be seen what this means for 2020 Games in Tokyo. Only 19 Russian athletes competed at the 2017 World Championships in London following their IAAF suspension, where those athletes were deemed ‘neutral’, not able to wear Russian colors, and their anthem would not have been played for any gold medal winners (of which there was one, Mariya Lasitskene in the High Jump). Read the full artilcle on the 2018 ban, Russian doping: IOC bans Russia from 2018 Winter Olympics on BBC

Related: A statement from USADA CEO Travis Tygart, as posted on Twitter:

Worth Watching: Icarus (2017), “A major Olympic cheating scandal is uncovered by accident by an American documentary filmmaker and a Russian scientist, when they realize their combined knowledge points fingers at Russia’s secret sports doping program.” See the full review on Rotten Tomatoes, and watch on Netflix

Sara Hall and Tim RItchie discuss the tactics that let to their victories at the California International Marathon / US Marathon Championships. “I just wanted to run the right pace for me,” Hall told Race Results Weekly. “I thought, maybe I could get the course record if everything went well. I wanted to put myself in a position to do that.” A staggering 87 athletes finished the race with times good enough to earn the qualifier for the 2020 Olympic Trials Marathon, 50 women and 37 men. Read the full article, Tim Ritchie, Sara Hall Talk Strategy In 2017 USATF Marathon Titles on FloTrack

The 2017 USATF National Club Cross Country Championships that will be held in Lexington, Kentucky on December 9. Team USA Minnesota, who were well represented on the podium at the Minnesota XC Championships, will be sending  Katy Moen, Breanna Sieracki, Ryan Rutherford Kevin Lewis and  Danny Docherty to compete. We also see  Jess Tonn, Amy Van Alstine (who has a history of bringing home the hardware at this event),  Rachel Weber Scott Bauhs, Donnie Cowart, Dathan Ritzenhein, Amanda Rego and Lauren Johnson in the field. This is definitely going to be an event you do not want to miss!

The USATF Annual Meeting

 Emma Coburn and  Sam Kendricks among those recognized for their 2017 achievements. “Top athletes, performances and more were recognized at the 2017 Jesse Owens Awards Banquet as part of USATF Annual Meeting Saturday night in Columbus, Ohio.” Other honorees include Noah Lyles, Jerry Schmacher, and Brittney Reese. See the full list of awards and recipients on RunBlogRun’s Awards given at the Owens Banquet

AthleteBiz hosted a panel with the USATF Athletes Advisory Committee (AAC) to discuss making the most of your career off the track. Athletes in attendance heard from Manteo Mitchell, Rachel Weber, Maria Michta-Coffey, Lauren Fleshman, and Will Leer about how they have each found different paths to their own unique successes off the track.

  • “Keep connected with your local community and fan base,” was shared by Maria following her story of finding nontraditional sponsorship and funding sources ahead of the 2012 London Games, and Rachel added “People just want to share in your journey with you.”
  • Manteo shared that he has levied his success on the track into a packed schedule of speaking engagements all across the country, saying, “The hardest part is saying no sometimes.” He then added that finding new avenues to make the connections, such as Skype sessions, has increased his ability to be available.
  • “Even the smallest interaction with a fan and they’re going to tell all their friends about you,” said by Will on building a fan base by always being available to fans, even when it may be a tough time to do so.
  • Lauren shared her insight about having once been an athlete seeking sponsorship and now being a business owner seeking athletes to connect with, stating, “The story you tell is what is exciting to brands.”

Panel participants from left to right, Manteo Mitchell, Rachel Weber, Maria Michta-Coffey, Lauren Fleshman, and Will Leer

Norris Frederick shared invaluable experience and advice with the AAC about how he built a personal brand on Instagram and is maximizing his social potential. Norris leverages his engaged following to promote products and book speaking engagements which has turned into a lucrative business model for him. Due to this outside-the-box thinking, he no longer relies on track as a primary income source.


 Neely Gracey has shared her favorite things for the runner in your life. From massages to gift cards and gear, she touches all the bases. Our favorite is #2 on the list, but perhaps we are just a little bit biased. See the full list, Christmas Gift List for Runners on Neely Runs

High Performance West founder and director Johnathan Marcus shares a great narrative from his time coaching  Alan Webb for his final race. The story begins in 2013 when Alan had planted himself in Oregon and had set his sights on the triathlon following his athletic career. “But first he wanted to break 4 minutes for the mile once more, as a farewell. He chose the Millrose Games at the Armory, the site where he first broke 4 minutes as a high school senior.” Following 6.5 months of preparation, the article is centered around a cold winter morning in Portland for Alan’s last track workout. Read the full story, Alan Webb’s Final Workout on High Performance West

 Jared Ward and Timex are offering an opportunity to win a pair of GPS watches. With three simple steps to enter, there is no reason not to! Read Jared’s status below and make sure to submit your entry before December 12

Do you love Run Gum and guessing games? Then do we have some news for you! If you can guess  Nick Symmonds‘s time for the Honolulu Marathon, you enter to win a pair of Brooks Levitate shoes and a year supply of Run Gum. For full contest and entry information, click here to visit Run Gum’s Guess Nick’s Time contest

Shameless Self-Promotion

Don’t worry  Lolo, we’ve got your covered! AthleteBiz has launched YourNextSuccess, a first-class career consulting service exclusively for pro track and field athletes.

That’s all for today! If you liked what you read today, please keep checking back in and we’ll keep supplying the Buzz!

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