Here's a final column of the Dubai marathon by Pat Butcher, one of the journalists that we rely on for updates on marathons around the world. This is my first visit to Dubai, and the race looks like it could be terribly fast, maybe even challenging the world record. Tamirat Tola, 2016 Olympic bronze medalist over 10,000m, World Championship silver medalist over the marathon is in top condition. At the presser, Tola told us he is in better shape than in 2017.
(PHOTO:Camera 4 / TOP Sportmarketing) Four Olympic champions, five World champions and six European gold medallists will be in action at the fifth edition of the ISTAF INDOOR meeting in Berlin on Friday evening. Renaud Lavillenie of France and Brazil’s Thiago Braz, winners of the 2012 and 2016 Olympic titles respectively, will meet in the pole vault, while Tianna Bartoletta of the USA has set her sights just as high with a double start: the Olympic long jump and sprint relay champion will run the 60m as well as competing in her specialist field event. Special safety nets will be installed for the discus competition which closes the meeting and this promises to be another highlight with the presence of Berlin’s very own Olympic champion from the 2012 London Games, Robert Harting.
With the 12th edition of the super-fast RAK Half Marathon due to take place in the UAE on Friday 9th February, the confirmed men’s and *women’s elite fields clearly trump even the star-studded line-ups of one year ago. Reigning men’s champion Bedan Karoki is back to defend his title, but with fifteen men able to boast sub-60 minute bests – two more than last year - his task to win again, whether he runs as fast as his victorious 59:10 mark twelve months back or not, will be harder than ever.