Alberto Salazar shares in proteges' gold, silver
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LONDON -- Alberto Salazar's portfolio of distance running honors includes three New York City Marathon titles, one Boston Marathon crown, an array of American and world records at assorted distances -- but zero Olympic medals.
He didn't compete in the 1980 Moscow Games with the American boycott and ran a disappointed 15th in the 1984 Los Angeles Olympic marathon.
It's not too much of a stretch, though, to call him a double Olympic medalist now.
In a remarkable scene, watched Saturday night by 80,000 screaming spectators in a packed-to-the-gills Olympic Stadium, two Salazar-coached runners, who are the best of buddies and training partners, running for different nations, snared the gold and silver medals in the Olympic 10,000-meter final.
When Mohamed "Mo" Farah crossed the line, after 25 laps, to win the race for Great Britain in 27 minutes, 30.42 seconds, with American Galen Rupp right behind for the silver in 27:30.90, it was more than anything else a perfect tribute to their mentor.
"I am forever grateful to Alberto Salazar," said the Somalia-born Farah, who has been training under Salazar, and with Rupp, in Oregon for the past year and a half.
"Nether of us, Mo or I, would be here without Alberto," Rupp said. "I've known him, and trained with him since 2000, since I was at Central Catholic High School [in Portland]. "He [Salazar] is so meticulous in his training. He leaves no stones unturned."
This was the 23rd Olympic 10,000 final, but the first-ever gold medal for distance running-mad Great Britain. And Rupp's silver represented just the third medal won by an American in the 10,000. Billy Mills had won it in 1964, and Lewis Tewanima won the silver in 1912
In the women's 100-meter final -- a race so close that the top four runners crossed the line just 1/10th of a second apart -- Jamaica's Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce leaned over the line to edge top American hope Carmelita Jeter, 10.75 to 10.78.
Other winners included Britain's Jessica Ennis, who took the gold in the heptathlon with a score of 6,955 points. Another British winner was men's long jumper Greg Rutherford, with a span of 27 feet, 3¼ inches, as American Will Claye took the bronze at 26-7 ¾.