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 Dathan Ritzenhein Poised For An American Distance Revival
Submitted by Bricks :: Tue Mar 15, 2005 9:30 am
Distance runner Dathan Ritzenhein appears ready to do what no American runner in 25 years has done, contend for a medal at Sunday's world cross-country championships. The last American victory at the event was in 1981, and since then the field has become dominated by strong African runners, especially Kenyans, with Americans having second-tier status. The last top-10 finish by an American at the world championships came in 1987. But the impressive Ritzenhein surprised everyone by winning against a strong international field at the Belfast International Cross Country Run on January 8. He also claimed the US 12km cross-country title on February 13. On Sunday he'll face a field as tough as they come, including world 10,000 meter record holder Kenenisa Bekele, who will be trying for his fourth straight victory.

Runworks 2005 5M Racer
San Francisco, CA
Joined: 26 Nov 2004
Posts: 1157

Re: Dathan Ritzenhein Poised For An American Distance Reviva Posted: Mon Mar 21, 2005 12:58 pm 

If you saw the results from this weekend, then you know that Bekele proved too tough to beat at the World Cross Country Championships. He won both the short course and the long course races-- a very impressive double. Ritzenhein finished a disappointing 62nd in the long course race, more than three minutes back. I haven't yet seen any interviews or reports about Ritzenhein explaining what happened, but it's certainly susprising that he finished so far back given the shape he is in.

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