Legendary athlete Haile Gebrselassie has told CNN that he aims to be competitive at the 2012 London Olympic Games, despite being impressed by some of the younger runners coming through in long-distance events.
I remember the first time I met Haile Gebrselassie, the 37-year-old Ethiopian distance running legend who shocked the running world Sunday when he announced his retirement after dropping out of the New York City Marathon at the 16-mile mark. I was among a throng of journalists leaving a press conference at the 2008 Beijing Olympics about Liu Xiang, the Chinese hurdler who had won the gold medal in the 110-meter hurdles in '04 and subsequently shouldered the expectations of a billion Chinese fans.
Just three weeks after the U.S. men's basketball team defeated host nation Turkey in the finals of their world championship, the U.S. women's team knocked off the hosts from the Czech Republic, 89-69, to capture the women's title in Karlovy Vary on Sunday. Angel McCoughtry led the U.S. with 18 points and Diana Taurasi added 16. The victory also gave the U.S. squad an automatic berth in the tournament at the London Olympics.
Look for an official announcement Wednesday that Haile Gebrselassie, the fastest marathoner in history, will make his U.S. marathon debut in New York on Nov. 7. He plans to run with 1,200 school kids this week to celebrate National Running Day in New York, and his official announcement should follow.
Ethiopian distance running legend Haile Gebrselassie is one of the great athletes his sport has ever seen. He won the 10,000 meters at the Olympics in 1996 and 2000. He also won seven medals, including four golds, at the world outdoor championships over the years. In September 2008, Gebrselassie ran the still-current world best in the marathon of two hours, three minutes, 59 seconds, breaking his own mark by 27 seconds. He will turn 37 in April, and though an asthma attack forced him to pull out of the New York Half Marathon last weekend, he remains committed to running the marathon at the 2012 Olympics in London.
Aging athletes don't have the agility they had in their youth. Minor injuries accumulate and become major ones. And by the time they hit their mid-30s and 40s, they're considered geriatric -- that's the conventional wisdom.
Olympic champion Sammy Wanjiru of Kenya improved on last year's second place to win the London Marathon in a course record and personal best time of two hours, five minutes and 10 seconds after a crazily fast start aimed at breaking Haile Gebrselassie's world record.
Sebastian Coe is one of the greatest middle-distance runners ever to step foot on to an athletics track. There are few people better qualified to comment on the talent and effort it takes to become a world beater. Here he gives CNN his views of Haile Gebrselassie.
It is hard to imagine a scenario where Ethiopian Haile Gebrselassie, perhaps the greatest distance runner ever, could pass through a crowd of hundreds of track and field reporters and not be stopped for a question.
Some athletes earn the right to be considered a sporting legend. Few, in truth, are truly deserving of such an honor. But there can be no quarrel over the greatness of Ethiopia's Haile Gebrselassie who, in a career spanning 16 years, has redefined the art of long-distance running.
World record holder Haile Gebrselassie has again ruled out competing in the marathon at the Beijing Olympics, telling a Spanish newspaper that he would be "committing suicide" by running in unfavorable conditions.
Tefera Ghedumu is a popular talk show host on Ethiopian TV and has known Haile Gebrselassie for a over a decade. He tells CNN his thoughts on how and why Gebrselassie has made such a positive impact in his homeland.
See his distinctive stride and you could read a chapter of Haile Gebrselassie's life, the telltale peek at the world's greatest living distance runner, blowing through Central Park, then Times Square and the streets of Gotham as the Ethiopian legend ran away with the New York Half Marathon on Sunday morning.
Ethiopia's Kenenisa Bekele sealed his reputation as both the present and future of long-distance running when he won the Olympic men's 10,000 meters, leaving his mentor Haile Gebrselassie to finish fifth.