Thursday, June 03, 2010
馬拉松賽跑: 種族優劣論 / Marathon Races, For Better or Worse
When I was growing up, my Mom used to encourage me to play basketball because she believed the sport would make me grow tall and strong, just like the black Global Trotters I supposed. Now, she might be unclear on the concept of cause-and-effect, Logic tells me that height is the causation rather than the result of playing professional basketball (and becoming a millionaire is definitely the result of being a NBA professional for Yao Ming, but that's another story for another day).
So, if my logic is right and my Mom was wrong, then how do I explain the winning of the Japanese runner in the Ottawa Marathon on May 30, 2010. For the last 30 years or so, North Americans have pretty well accepted the domination of runners from Kenya, Ethiopia, and other African countries in the elite class, to the extent that race organizers have created a separate top Canadian or US finishers category. The racial line in the racing field is so entrenched that most ppl in Ottawa had automatically assumed that the male winner would be African. Until Arata Fujiwara of Japan came along, beat the Africans, smashed the Ottawa Marathon record, and proved everyone wrong.
So, maybe my Mom has been right all along, that physical attributes are not the only prerequisites to excellence, that you can still be a good performer by putting efforts into it. The Japanese runner is a good inspiring example.
For the record:
Arata Fujiwara, Japan 2:09:33 (Ottawa marathon record)
Laban Moiben, Kenya 2:09:43
Bazu Worku, Ethiopia 2:09:53
(other top 10 runners are all from Kenya or Ethiopia)
Merima Mohammed, Ethiopia 2:28:19
Radiya Adlo, Ethiopia 2:35:04
Samira Raif, Morocco 2:36:46
(4th runner from Ethiopia, remaining top 10 are from Russia, NZ and Canada)
* Race results from Ottawa Sun May 31, 2010
攝影图片 Photo Credit:
* Top: Ottawa Citizen May 31, 2010
* Bottom: Brett Larner, Japan Running News (see below)
* "Japan Running News" May 30, 2010 blog article entitled "Arata Fujiwara Sets Ottawa Marathon Course Record" by Brett Larner