화요일, 4월 16, 2024
HomeAthleticsThe Sydney and Femke Present, and the Battle of Two Coaches

The Sydney and Femke Present, and the Battle of Two Coaches

The Sydney and Femke present and the Battle of Two Coaches 

Sydney McLaughlin Levrone is among the many most interesting athletes in American observe and subject historical past. An athletic prodigy, Sydney has labored lengthy and exhausting to good her specialty, the 400-meter hurdles, placing the WR into the unimaginable realm of fifty.68.

Over the previous couple of years, Sydney has labored with Bobby Kersee, certainly one of our most interesting, if not most eccentric, athletic coaches in your entire sport. Eccentricity just isn’t a nasty factor, and his athletes love him.

Bobby Kersee has coached nice multi-eventers, like his spouse, Jackie Joyner-Kersee, and nice sprinters, like Allyson Felix. He has a high quality group of athletes from Sydney McLaughlin-Levrone, Athing Mu, Taylor McLaughlin (Sydney’s brother), Brandon Miller, Jenna Prandini, and Keni Harrison. Bobby develops sprinters, hurdlers, multi-eventers, you title it, Bobby has coached the occasion.

Sydney McLaughlin units new WR of fifty.68 in 400m hurdles, World Athletics Championships
Eugene, Oregon, USA
July 15-26, 2022, photograph by Kevin Morris


I first met Bobby Kersee in 1994, sitting within the stands in Knoxville, Tennessee, on the USATF Outside, and I used to be stunned that he knew me. He sat beside me and started discussing Ben Johnson, the disgraced Canadian sprinter. Bobby hoped the man would break a WR once more, and as he was being examined repeatedly, it could present that simply because somebody provides medicine to a routine doesn’t make the athlete superior. “You can’t make a racehorse out of a workhorse,” Bobby mentioned.

He was incensed that followers might assume there was a simple highway to greatness in our sport.

Bobby Kersee is talking about Athing Mu, designed by Deji Ogeyingbo.

With all due candor and respect, I believe Bobby Kersee is out of his thoughts, however in a great way. I recall a dialog with Bobby about being almost arrested sporting a hoodie and ordering a pizza in California till the police officer seen it was Bobby. The person is painfully trustworthy, and he’s a superior coach. His strangeness just isn’t an act however an instance of how distinctive characters are in no matter their specialty. Bobby Kersee is likely one of the most inventive individuals I’ve ever met. His information of the game is fascinating, as is his understanding of human nature. I at all times have time for Bobby Kersee. I study one thing in every dialog.

Final yr, Bobby acquired some unfavorable media protection as a result of neither Sydney nor Athing Mu was racing a lot. Then, they pulled out of the meet that Bobby was co-founder of, the USATF LA Grand Prix. Fact is, these are two completely different conditions. I’m not positive he was accountable, however he protects his athletes. Bobby Kersee is aware of that when constructing nice athletes, each a part of their lives is important in that upcoming Olympic battle. His athletes belief him implicitly.

Athing Mu is one other baby prodigy, and he or she wanted a break. When she misplaced in Budapest, she was mad and returned to Nike Pre Traditional with hearth in her eyes. Bobby inspired her to take a break and supported her construct to Pre. She can be prepared in 2024 for Paris, mark my phrase. Final yr, Bobby was chatting with me through cellphone and instructed me that, shortly, Athing, when she was prepared, would go for the 800m world document. I’ve no purpose to not imagine him.

Sydney McLaughlin takes the 400m USATF New York Grand Prix
Continental Tour Gold
offered by International Athletics &Advertising Inc., photograph by Kevin Morris

Sydney McLaughlin-Levrone wanted a break. Though her interviews have been few and much between, they’ve been large. I’ve to say Sydney is a wonderful interviewee, however she appeared like 2023 was a yr to resume. She was injured earlier than Budapest and was not seen for the remainder of the season. I imagine Sydney McLaughlin-Levrone will return in 2024, however I do know little about her damage restoration.

Bobby Kersee has a unbelievable observe document, no pun meant, of making ready athletes to compete of their most difficult races. Sydney McLaughlin has your entire World gunning for her within the 400m hurdles. Her foray into the 400m flat in 2023 gave her a respite from the ten-hurdle race, the 400m hurdles. However in racing in 2023, Sydney developed a knee difficulty over the 400m flat. What additionally ought to be famous was that after not racing the 400m for a number of years, Sydney McLaughlin-Levrone was dangerously near the American document in a collection of some quick races.

It’s fairly evident {that a} motivated, wholesome, and centered Sydney McLaughlin-Levrone might do one thing spectacular in Paris in August 2024. It’s also fairly obvious that Femke Bol, a motivated, wholesome, and centered athlete from the Netherlands, additionally plans to be prepared for Paris.

For seven billion athletics followers (face it, 80 % of Olympic followers rediscover observe and subject each 4 years), the ladies’s 400-meter flat and 400-meter hurdles can be two of the highlights of the 2024 Paris Olympics.

The 400-meter hurdles is a traditional distance. It consists of 1 lap of the purple MONDO observe, about to be put in in Paris, with ten hurdles. This is likely one of the most difficult disciplines in our sport, and the agility, approach, pace, and focus these girls will show will shock and shock you. If each athletes are wholesome and ready, this can be a race for the ages.

Within the final 16 months, Femke Bol has honed her pace, endurance, and focus. In winter 2023, Bol broke the WR for the 400 meters indoors. Outside, she gained the 400-meter hurdles, minus Sydney, and took gold within the 4x400m after collapsing within the combined 4x400m on the end line.

Femke Bol takes 400m hurdles in Eugene, photograph by Brian Eder for RunBlogRun

Femke Bol is coached by Swiss coach Laurent Meuwly. Laurent took Femke apart after Tokyo 2021, the place she ran 52.03 ER for the 400-meter hurdles and started to alter her steps. The purpose was to run seven hurdles with 14 steps after which, during the last three hurdles, transfer to fifteen steps as soon as once more. The idea was to make use of Femke’s robust end to her benefit.

Final summer time, on the London Diamond League, Femke Bol improved her private finest to 51.45, a brand new European document for the 400-meter hurdles. What’s going to she run in 2024?

What’s the secret sauce, you ask?

Endurance work, agility work, hurdle work, pace work, restoration, psychological preparation, and sports activities vitamin all play a component, and Coach Meuwly has all the bases lined.

This previous World Indoors, March 1-3,2024, Femke Bol broke the WR at 400 meters for a second time and ran an excellent leg on her crew (Netherlands) 4x400m, taking a second gold.

GLASGOW, UK – MAR 2: Picture of Femke BOL on the World Athletics Indoor Championships on MAR 2, 2024, in GLASGOW, UK (Photograph by Dan Vernon for World Athletics).

Laurent Meuwly has honed Femke Bol’s spectacular 400m flat pace and constructed her pace over the previous a number of winters, the place she has despatched Nationwide information, World Information, and European information over the 400 meter flat.

Femke Bol famous, “My favourite occasion is the 400m hurdles.” She has considerably improved in pace and power since 2023 and ought to be able to problem Sydney McLaughlin Levrone in Paris.

Femke Bol, Wanda Diamond League
London Athletics Meet
July 23, 2023, London, England, U.Ok., photograph by Kevin Morris

What’s fascinating is that each Femke Bol and Sydney McLaughlin-Levrone are sponsored by New Steadiness Athletics, the World’s largest privately held footwear firm. At $7.5 billion in gross sales, New Steadiness helps the game with athletes in North America and Europe and occasions globally whereas making tools (trainers are tools) for the World of sports activities.


The TRACK at New Steadiness, positioned on their campus close to Boston, has hosted two world-class indoor conferences, one in 2023 and one in 2024. This yr, they hosted the NCAA Division 1 Indoor and their NB Indoor Nationals. In early 2023, Femke Bol ran a world finest for the five hundred meters, opening her grand yr in 2023. Her World finest helped christen the TRACK at New Steadiness with a high quality World Athletics Indoor Gold Tour cease, celebrating town of Boston, an indoor observe heart and sports activities capital.

Femke Bol units the World document at 500 meters! New Steadiness Indoor Grand Prix Observe & Discipline
Boston, Massachusetts, USA
February 3, 2023
World Athletics Indoor Tour Gold assembly, photograph by Kevin Morris

New Steadiness loves the observe. Their crew makes excellent trainers and specialty trainers. Do you assume they understand how enormous Sydney McLaughlin-Levrone and Femke Bol might be in 2024?

The ladies exemplify what New Steadiness stands for, utilizing their god-given abilities to pursue excellence by wholesome coaching, racing, and focus.

I look ahead to spring 2024 (which begins immediately) for a lot of causes.

A number of questions can be answered within the 2024 Outside observe & subject season.

One can be answered in Paris in August 2024, as certainly one of my dream races turns into a actuality. I see Sydney McLauglin-Levrone line up with Femke Bol, subsequent to her, within the 400-meter hurdles. And in simply round 50 level seconds, we’ll see simply who the best Girls’s 400-meter hurdler within the World really is, with all the most interesting lined up on a purple MONDO observe on the Stade de France, with 80,000 screaming international sports activities followers on-site and billions across the World on iPhones, Ipads and laptops, watching one of many singular nice races of the Olympiad.

This author can image each coaches, Bobby Kersee and Laurent Meuwly, on completely different sides of the observe as their prized 400-meter hurdlers run the race of their lives.

It ought to be an incredible fifty seconds for the game of athletics.

You may have two decisions: purchase a ticket and be within the Stade de France, or watch the race from anyplace utilizing a digital system.

Discuss a worldwide village.


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