- The Washington Times - Sunday, June 18, 2006

The long-awaited decision on the sites for the next men’s and women’s U.S. Olympic Marathon Trials could be announced later this week.

Officials from the Boston Athletic Association and the New York Road Runners are planning to attend a press conference with USA Track & Field during the USA Outdoor Championships in Indianapolis this week.

Late last year, the BAA bid for its Boston Marathon to be the site of the women’s Olympic marathon trials, while the NYRR bid for the men’s Olympic marathon trials to be at its New York City Marathon.

Twin Cities Marathon and Road Runner Akron Marathon were among other marathons expressing interest to USATF to play host to these two high-profile events, which determine which marathoners represent the United States in Beijing in 2008.

USATF, which had expected to make the announcement by mid-April, said Friday that no press conference had been scheduled at that point.

Particularly awaiting the news are the current qualifiers, including area standouts Jacob Frey (2:17:37 at Austin on Feb. 19) and Chris Banks (2:21:44 at Los Angeles on March 19) for the men and Mary Kate Bailey (2:46:03) and Dana Coons (2:46:54) — both at Twin Cities on Oct. 2, 2005 — for the women.

The championships would be a perfect venue for the announcement, with plenty of track and field media there. The event serves as the selection meet for the IAAF World Cup of Athletics, which will take place later this summer.

The meet will be on ESPN2 from 6 to 8 p.m. on Saturday and from 5 to 7 p.m. next Sunday.

Run when you get there — Organized by the Road Runners Club of America, the first National Run at Work Day will be Sept. 22. This shouldn’t be confused with the RRCA’s National Run to Work Day, which failed to catch on nationally after beginning in 1997. Logistically, of course, it’s not easy for most workers to run to work.

The commuting concept works better on a bicycle, which is why the Washington Area Bicycling Association’s Bike to Work Day in May is such a success.

According to RRCA, the goal of National Run at Work Day is to promote physical activity and healthy living through running or walking.

Details about National Run at Work Day and other events in RRCA’s recently resurrected newsletter are available at www.rrca.org.

From 1973 to 2002, the RRCA published a quarterly newsletter, which was mailed to more than 140,000 households at its peak. But it stopped the newsletter because of production costs.

However, the RRCA newsletter is back — on the Web site. The 24-page June quarterly issue is on the site, and the RRCA says it’s receiving more than 100,000 hits a month.

Kastor to hit broadway — Last year, Deena Kastor won the Chicago Marathon. This year, the U.S. marathon record holder has committed to run the New York City Marathon in November.

Kastor has been running well this year, opening her 2006 season by breaking her own U.S. half-marathon record at the Vattenfall Berlin Half-Marathon in 1:07:34, then winning the London Marathon three weeks later with a U.S. record 2:19:36.

The 2004 Olympic bronze medalist also has her eye on the World Marathon Majors jackpot. After earning 25 points from winning in London, she is tied for the lead with Kenyan Rita Jeptoo, who won the Boston Marathon six days earlier.

The series points leader after two years and a minimum four marathons wins $500,000.

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