In 10 states, girls still run shorter cross-country races than boys. Why?
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His winning time was In the spring of Ritzenhein ran a The next day he won the m at the Big 12 Outdoor Conference Championships. Ritzenhein harbored hopes of competing in the Olympic Games at the end of the summer in Athensbut shortly after the NCAA meet he developed a stress fracture in his foot.
He limped through the Olympic Trials in the 10, m, finishing last, but was able to make the team because the two other athletes with Olympic qualifying times did not go to Athens, Bob Kennedy having dropped out of the Olympic Trials race with an Achilles tendon injury and Meb Keflezighi choosing to focus solely on the marathon. Ritzenhein ran the Olympic 10, m, but dropped out mid-race due to pain caused by his stress fracture.
Shortly after the Olympics he decided to forgo his remaining collegiate eligibility in order to run professionally. At this time he changed coaches from Mark Wetmore to Brad Hudson. In January he won the prestigious Belfast International cross country race, and seemed to be in great form.
Ritzenhein won the U. Before the World Cross Country Championships expectations were high and some prognosticators even predicted a top 10 finish, but Ritzenhein faded after going out with the leaders and ended up placing 62nd. Ritzenhein's track season began with a In a much anticipated 2 mile race that included high school rival Alan Webb, Ritzenhein ran 8: A few days before the U. Outdoor Track Championships Ritzenhein injured a nerve on his foot while kicking around a soccer ball bare foot with his dog.
This injury effectively ended his season. Leading with Hall and Jorge Torres for several circuits of the 12K course, he dropped off badly near the end as Ryan Hall ran away from the field. Ritzenhein finished nearly a minute behind Hall and finished fourth in the race.
He qualified for the team but appeared to be hurting badly after the race, leading some to question his fitness heading into the IAAF World Cross-Country Championships April 1—2. Ritzenhein was diagnosed with walking pneumonia after the USATF national cross-country championships and forfeited his spot on the US team.
Prior to the race Webb and Ritzenhein agreed to alternate leading the race for the first 24 laps. The last lap would be "every man for himself.
In the m at the U. Representatives from Iowa did not respond to repeated inquiries. Every athletic association implied that the state would be open to increasing the distance, provided that the coaches' associations voted to do so.
For coaches, the main deterrent is the perception that it will negatively affect participation numbers. Particularly in smaller classifications, coaches worry that increasing the distance from 4K to 5K will turn away girls who either aren't as serious about the sport, use cross country mostly to train for other sports, or both.
Friedman said some schools were having trouble getting girls to turn out for cross country at all, and schools with smaller numbers were afraid of forcing their girls to run an extra 1, meters every race. The longer distance means more time spent racing, more training and, simply, more work.
But following the move to the longer distance, Friedman said the participation numbers barely wavered. Participation numbers aren't the only reason for skepticism. Coaches have also voiced concern over the amount of time it takes girls to finish a race.
Top Boys Performances All-Time At The Michigan XC State Meet Since
The average girls' runners complete a four-kilometer race in approximately the same amount of time the average boys finish a five-kilometer course. That thinking doesn't sit well with some of the nation's elite harriers. The four-kilometer race changes the strategy for some top athletes. In states where the distance is shorter, the race is substantially different. Six-tenths of a mile can adequately separate runners who are better conditioned or, as in Hauger's case, those who get stronger as the race gets longer.
Colleges looking for the best and the brightest have a hard time comparing girls who run the five-kilometer distances with those who do not.
Maria Hauger won a Minnesota state championship in the 4K but was forced to change her strategy for longer postseason events like the Foot Locker Championships. John Nepolitan "I coach a pretty large team," Haselhorst said. The boys run 1, [meters] and the girls run 1, But for whatever reason, the game changes during cross country season. But all of the states surveyed signaled that several of their coaches have openly wondered about the negative fallout of an increased distance.
They get thrown into coaching, and they do it to the best of their ability, but they have this perception, for whatever reason, that to ask these girls to run another 1, meters is going to hurt the sport. I don't think they ever actually take the time to ask their kids.
Once we get a feel for what the total population [of the coaches] wants, we'll take it to our fall meetings to administrators.