Manny Huerta, a Cuban-American refugee who fled to the US with his mother at the age of 13, crossed the finish line at the ITU San Diego World Series race in 9th place, earning a spot on the American Olympic team. I stayed up late to watch the race, and the camerman caught the significance of the moment, eschewing on opportunity to film the race leader slapping backs and shaking hands to walk over and catch Huerta’s reaction. You could hear this incredible release of emotion as Huerta hugged his coach, his fellow athletes, and the other Americans in the race. It was that deep, gutteral sobbing that only comes out during raw, unfettered release of emotion. I haven’t found a good video of it yet, but Huerta spent the next half hour sprinting back and forth in front of the crowd waving an enormous American flag. Here is his story. See you in London, Manny.
The man who would be king- Wilson Kipsang.
I went into London last weekend to watch the Virgin London Marathon. While the Boston Marathon will always be my favorite race, the London Marathon is probably the most competitive. Because there are no restrictions on the number of entrants from any one country, the race has a field equal to (some would argue stronger than) the Olympics.
This year, I stood casually at the 23 mile mark as Wilson Kipsang executed one of the most impressive and tactically astonishing marathons in history. In a race dictated by pace makers and steady, metronomic tempo, Kipsang broke from the field after only 20km and dared the best runners in the world to follow. Most couldn’t, and those few that did epically detonated over the final 5km into the line.
This, ladies and gentlemen, is the new challenger for king of the marathon world. And by his demeanor, I would venture this monarch aims to hold the throne for a while.