The IAAF Achieves Gender Parity At Worlds, But Only For Five Women

On Sunday night, the IAAF added a women's 50K racewalk to the 2017 World Championships. The change may have been hasty, done less than two weeks before the championships are scheduled to start in London, but in doing so the IAAF has ensured that, for the first time ever, there is an equal number (24) of men's and women's events at a global track and field championship this August.

The change has been a long time coming, as American racewalker Erin Taylor-Talcott made history last year by successfully petitioning the IAAF to compete as a woman in the men's 50K racewalk at the World Race Walking Team Championships. Though she finished in last place at that race by six minutes, her story and advocacy played a large part in helping to push the IAAF to add the event to the 2017 Worlds program. She has been named to Team USA to compete in the 50K in London.

The only problematic part of the announcement was its lateness. To qualify to compete, athletes must have achieved an entry standard of 4:30:00 by the end of Tuesday, July 25 -- just two days after the announcement of the event. According to the IAAF lists, only five women in the world have achieved that standard in 2017. FloTrack could not find a 50K race walk being hosted between now and the end of the qualifying period.

To make the issue worse, the IAAF says the event will have a 4:17 last-lap cutoff time, meaning that all athletes must reach the last loop before that time. That works out to a pace of 4:27:43 for 50K, more than two minutes faster than the qualification time, and a time that is faster than Taylor-Talcott's 2017 best of 4:29:33. If athletes are to be pulled out for not reaching the cutoff, they will still be given a finishing place and be eligible for prize money.

In a blog post Taylor-Talcott made today, she went over the positive and negative implications of the IAAF deciding to host the event so close to Worlds. She admits that it is possible that only five athletes will enter the women's 50K racewalk at Worlds, but IAAF President Sebastian Coe said he will factor in the late timing of the IAAF's decision when considering the future of the event: "Therefore, to ensure the long-term credibility of the World Championships, we will follow the recommendation of the Race Walking Committee and assess the development of the event to determine whether there are sufficient numbers of athletes and countries legitimately interested."

Yulimar Rojas Sets Indoor Triple Jump World Record In Madrid

Venezuelan Yulimar Rojas set the women’s indoor triple jump world record on Friday in Madrid with a 15.43m leap. With it, the 24-year-old eclipsed Tatyana Lebedeva’s 15.36m mark that had stood since 2004.

Ababel Yeshaneh, Not Brigid Kosgei, Sets Half Marathon World Record

What was expected to be a coronation of marathon world record holder Brigid Kosgei as the half marathon queen instead turned into an introduction of a worthy counterpart as Ethiopian Ababel Yeshaneh stunned the Kenyan on Friday morning (Thursday night in the U.S.) at the Ras Al Khaimah (RAK) Half Marathon by setting a 64:31 world record.

The 10 Best Performances From The Weekend

Between more Mondo Duplantis' theatrics in Glasgow, a ridiculous road 5k world record in Monaco and plenty of excitement stateside, there was a lot to get excited about this past weekend in track and field.

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Don't Look Now... The NAU Lumberjacks Could Win NCAA Indoors

With just two weeks left to qualify for NCAAs a majority of the top-16 fields are coming into form on the distance side. The NAU men are currently slated to qualify ten entries across three distance events.

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Joshua Cheptegei Smashes Road 5k World Record In 12:51

A little over a month after Rhonex Kipruto took down Joshua Cheptegei’s road 10k world record, the Ugandan has answered back in a big way by running 12:51 on Sunday in Monaco to smash Kipruto’s 5k world record. Cheptegei cut a whopping 27 seconds off the 13:18 that the Kenyan ran on Jan. 12, a run that came en route to Kipruto’s 26:24 10k record.

Mondo Does It Again, Breaks Pole Vault World Record

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Mondo Duplantis is ushering in a new era of the pole vault, one centimeter at a time. Just a week removed from his world record clearance of 6.17m, the 20-year-old vaulted 6.18m at the Muller Indoor Grand Prix in Glasgow.

U.S. Indoor Women's Preview: Can Purrier Chase Down Houlihan?

The most interesting match-up of the indoor season materialized quickly. Last Saturday evening at the Millrose Games, Elinor Purrier dropped a stunning 4:16.85 mile to break the American record and dispatch a stacked field in a race that turned into a festival of personal bests and national records. It was a career-defining race for Purrier. A run fast enough to legitimately raise the question if she could beat America’s best mid-distance runner, Shelby Houlihan. This weekend at the US Indoor Championships in Albuquerque, Purrier will have two chances (the 3000m on Friday and the 1500m on Saturday) to pull it off. 

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2020 High School Track & Field State Championships Central

2020 High School Indoor Track & Field State Championships:

Weekend Watch Guide: Simpson, Jones Chase Fast 5k At BU

One of the busiest weekends of the 2020 indoor track season is upon us, and FloTrack has you covered with several live events across the country. Boston will once again host some of the top professional and collegiate distance runners in the U.S., including Jenny Simpson, Dani Jones and Tyler Day.

U.S. Indoor Men's Preview: Coleman Debuts, Engels Battles Thompson, Murphy

The stakes for the 2020 USATF Indoor Championships were dramatically reduced in the wake of World Indoors being postponed due to the coronavirus. But prize money and bragging rights are incentive enough for the world’s fastest man and several top domestic distance runners this weekend in Albuquerque.

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