A Message from the Track & Field Athlete's Association

Dear Athletes and Supporting Members,

 

As many of you are aware, the integrity of the results of a national championship was compromised at the USATF Indoor Championships in February. Proper procedure was not followed after the women’s 3000m, resulting in the disqualification of the winner, Gabriele Grunewald. In the men’s 3000m, Andrew Bumbalough was disqualified for contact he never made, which is clearly evident in the race footage.

USA Track and Field reinstated Grunewald as the winner of the women’s 3000m two days after the race, but with no explanation as to why proper procedure had not been followed and how they would prevent this from happening in the future. 

USATF has not responded with regards to the disqualification of Bumbalough.

The Track and Field Athletes Association proposed to the USATF that there be athlete representatives observing the protest and appeals process at future USATF championships. This proposal intended to improve transparency and accountability going forward for all parties involved. The proposal was sent directly to the USATF and was also presented openly to the public, garnering almost 1000 signatures in a matter of days.

USATF canceled a conference call initially scheduled for Monday, March 10, 2014, to discuss this proposal and since then has ignored all follow-up requests to reschedule from both the TFAA and the USATF Athlete Advisory Committee.

Why would our national governing body ignore the athletes association, their own athletes advisory committee (which is required by the Ted Stevens Act) and the 1,000 athletes, coaches, agents, sponsors and fans who signed the petition calling for change? 

The lack of action is the most recent in a long-string of failures to engage in meaningful dialogue with the TFAA and the AAC.  We've identified a number of issues that would enhance the professional side of our sport: improved transparency in the processes for protests, greater visibility into the bid processes for national championship sites, revenue-sharing opportunities and more.

We support USATF in their mission of driving "competitive excellence and popular engagement in our sport" and we recognize them in their role as a national governing body, but we do not agree with the tactic of shutting out THE ATHLETE VOICE.

It is unacceptable for the collective voice of the athletes to be disrespected and dismissed. Track and field is our life, our dream, our soul. It is OUR sport. We are aligned with our fans in our quest to improve our sport. We cannot sit idly by while its integrity is compromised and our calls for action and change fall on deaf ears.

It's time for action! This communication is just the first step. We call on your support and input as the TFAA prepares and acts on a series of important initiatives.  

Please tweet the following link with the hashtag #USATFChange to support our stance that our collective voice should not be ignored:
http://bit.ly/usatfchange

If you need help composing tweets or posts, we have prepared some for you:

We the athletes will not stand for our voices being ignored http://bit.ly/usatfchange #USATFchange

Please support the TFAA in protecting the collective voice of the athletes http://bit.ly/usatfchange #USATFchange

It is unacceptable for the collective voice of the athletes to be dismissed. http://bit.ly/usatfchange #USATFchange

Why would our national governing body ignore the athletes, coaches, agents, sponsors and fans? http://bit.ly/usatfchange #USATFchange

Track and field is OUR sport and we want to make it better. Our voice will not be silenced. http://bit.ly/usatfchange #USATFchange

There must be open communication between the athletes and their govening body http://bit.ly/usatfchange #USATFchange

Regards,

The TFAA Board

 
AJC Peachtree Road Race Sets $100,000 Prize Purse for U.S. Athletes

ATLANTA – March 19, 2014 – For the second consecutive year, the AJC Peachtree Road Race will host the USA 10K Championships for both men and women, Atlanta Track Club announced today. 

A total prize purse of $100,000 will be awarded exclusively to U.S. athletes, an increase of $40,000 from 2013. The winning U.S. male and female will now each earn $15,000.


“We’re proud that the best runners in America will again be celebrating July 4th in Atlanta,” said Rich Kenah, executive director of Atlanta Track Club. “Playing host to both U.S. Championship races is an honor, and focusing our entire prize purse on U.S. athletes this year seems the ideal way to showcase them at the AJC Peachtree Road Race, the largest road race in the country.”

Founded in 1964, Atlanta Track Club is celebrating its 50th Anniversary this year and is looking forward to motivating runners for years to come. In an effort to forge ties to the community that will inspire the next generation of runners, select U.S. Olympic and World Championships athletes who compete in the AJC Peachtree Road Race will visit and work with schoolchildren year-round in the Atlanta Metropolitan Area, focusing on participants in Atlanta Track Club’s Kilometer Kids program.

Last year, the USA 10K Championships were won by Matt Tegenkamp of Portland, OR (28:25, sixth overall) and Janet Bawcom of Flagstaff, AZ, and formerly of Rome, GA (32:45, eighth overall). It was the first time the AJC Peachtree Road Race hosted the USA Women’s 10K Championships, while the men also raced for the title in Atlanta in 2007, 2009, 2010 and 2011.

The 45th running of the AJC Peachtree Road Race will take place on Friday, July 4, 2014.

Registration for the 2014 lottery began on Saturday, March 15 and will continue until 11:59 p.m. on Saturday, March 22. The 2014 AJC Peachtree Road Race is capped at 60,000 entrants, making it the world’s largest 10K.

Event registration can be found at 
www.ajc.com/peachtree.  Additional details about the event are available at www.peachtreeroadrace.org.

 
Team USA Minnesota Members to Compete at USA 15k Championships, World Indoors Finals

Minneapolis/St. Paul – March 11, 2014 – Team USA Minnesota’s Meghan Peyton, Jon Grey andBen Sathre will compete this weekend at the USA 15k Championships in Jacksonville.  The championships for men and women are being held on March 15 as part of the 37th annual Gate River Run, which has hosted the USATF 15k Championships for 21 consecutive years.

 

The race, which is billed as the largest 15k in the U.S. with some 25,000 participants, starts and finishes at the Jacksonville Fairgrounds.  For the elite field, the 15k features an equalizer bonus of $5,000 in addition to the prize purse.  For the equalizer, the women will start at 8:23 a.m. and the men will begin at 8:30 a.m. with the rest of the participants.  The first person to cross the finish line, female or male, receives the bonus.

Peyton is the 2013 USA 20k Champion and has a best in the 15k distance of 51:18.  Most recently she competed at the USA Half Marathon Championships in January and at the USA Cross Country Championships in February.  This will be her sixth appearance at Gate River.

 

Grey is the 2011 USATF Club Cross Country Champion and has a best in the 10 mile of 47:38 which he set in November at the Pittsburgh 10 Mile.  Most recently he competed at the USA Half Marathon Championships and at the USA Cross Country Championships.  This will be the first time he has competed at Gate River.

 

Sathre ran the 2013 USA 15k Championships in Jacksonville with a time of 45:12.  Most recently, he set a personal best of 1:04:51 at the USA Half Marathon Championships in January.

 

IAAF World Indoor Championships – March 7-9
Both Gabriele Grunewald and Heather Kampf qualified for the finals of their respective events at the IAAF World Indoor Championships in Sopot, Poland, over the weekend.  Grunewald ran in the semi-finals of the 3000 meters on March 7 and qualified for the final in the event on Sunday with a time of 8:58.10.  Kampf’s semi-final heat was also on March 7 and she received an automatic qualifier for the 1500-meter final by finishing second with a personal indoor best of 4:11.27.

 

in the final of the World Indoor 3000m on Sunday, Grunewald, who is the 2014 USA Indoor 3000-meter Champion, finished 10th with a time of 9:11.76.  “I wasn’t really expecting it to be so tactical,” said Grunewald.  “I was feeling positive through the first 1500m but I was also feeling a little flat.  Unfortunately, I haven’t gotten in as much mileage as I wanted to with a little injury in January and I’m not sure if that’s what caught up with me.  But it was a good World Championships experience.  I’m so glad to have been here.  I wish I would have finished top six but, for me, each new experience at the international level is hopefully helping me get better.”

 

Kampf’s final of the World Indoor 1500m was on Saturday.  Unfortunately she fell with about five laps to go.  Kampf completed the race but was later disqualified for a lane violation.  “I just got clipped and went down,” said Kampf.  “I couldn’t tell you what happened.  I just got tangled up.  Somehow I was the only one who got mixed up in that but I got up and finished.  I had to.  There was no question.  Overall, It feels like a robbed opportunity.”

 
Road Race Management Streamlines Online Guide to Prize Money Races and Elite Athletes

Road Race Management has redesigned and updated its popular Online Guide to Prize Money Races and Elite Athletes. Now, easier to use than ever and featuring a clean design with numerous links to key athlete, agent and event information, the free Online Guide is a great resource for race directors and elite athlete coordinators seeking contact information about athletes; elite athletes seeking details about prize money races; and businesses seeking race and expo information. The Online Guide is available at http://rrmdirectory.herokuapp.com/

 

“The new streamlined online version is more readable and much easier to use. The Online Guide serves as a nerve center for all of the key agent, athlete and event information, and features powerful search and indexing features,” said Editor Phil Stewart. The free Online Guide contains over 1500 athlete contacts, 400 prize money events, and over 100 athlete agents. Updates of athlete performances in key events are made on a weekly basis and new prize money races are added continuously. Any athlete, agent or event director who would like to be listed, can use these links to provide the information (listings are free).

 

Athletes: http://www.rrm.com/directory/questionnaires/newathleteself.htm

 

Agents: http://www.rrm.com/directory/questionnaires/newagent.htm

 

Events: http://www.rrm.com/directory/questionnaires/newevent.htm

 

For details about advertising:

 

Visit https://dl.dropboxusercontent.com/u/247910085/14guide_ad_rates.pdf or contact Phil Stewart at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

 

 

 
Over The Cusp: 5 Questions With Amy Van Alstine

Amy Van Alstine, a 2013 RRCA Roads Scholar, turned more than a few heads at the U.S. Cross Country Championships on Feb. 15 in Boulder, Colo., running away from a very good women’s field to claim her first national title. Van Alstine, who didn’t make it on to many radars as a pre-race favorite, won the 8K race in 27:34—22 seconds up on second-place finisher and two-time world championships 1,500m medalist Jenny Simpson.

 
“I expected someone to go, but nobody went,” Van Alstine said after the race. “I tried to pick it up a bit, and I could feel everyone breathing on me. I felt really good, and I was kind of surprised that I won, and that Jenny (Simpson) wasn’t in front of me. I’m really happy and amazed.”
 
We recently caught up with the 24-year-old University of Richmond graduate, an adidas-sponsored athlete who trains with the newly formed Northern Arizona Elite squad in Flagstaff, Arizona.
 
 
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