08 Mar SUMMER SEASON LOOKAHEAD
In this detailed and accurate season lookahead, James Fairbourn takes a look at some of the stories (not) likely to be making the national newspapers this summer.
Scandals include, Rhys Williams finding himself up against it following his return from a doping ban, Mo Farah facing further questions around the company he keeps and Usain Bolt’s NASA-dependent World Championships participation put in doubt.
Colin Jackson announces the purchase of a new waistcoat in preparation for the BBC’s live athletics coverage this summer.
Lord Coe steps up his bid for the IAAF presidency by approving plans to build an athletics track in his back garden.
British Athletics release tickets for their ‘Summer of Athletics’. The website crashes due to lack of demand.
Greg Rutherford wins £4.5m on the National Lottery before being stripped of the prize after Chris Tomlinson asks to see CCTV evidence of him buying the ticket.
Rhys Williams is barred from entering Swansea athletics track after not paying the entry fee. The 400m hurdler tells reporters that he wasn’t apologising as he ‘had done nothing wrong’. He added that the lost training session could cost him ‘as much as £25,000’.
Andy Vernon announces that he is to leave all social media. Sources close to the Team GB star said he had ‘run out of people to offend’.
After Paula Radcliffe withdraws from the race, the BBC opt to show only highlights of the London Marathon. A spokesman tells reporters that it was ‘pointless’ as neither Mo Farah nor Usain Bolt are running.
Mo Farah blocks Vogue magazine on Twitter after they refused the opportunity to do a puff piece about his wife, Tania.
At the General Election, Will Sharman is narrowly beaten in the race to become the MP for Bedfordshire. In a 39-minute concession speech, he says that he would ‘continue to fight for the needs of hardworking and often victimised full time athletes’.
Lord Coe denies speculation that his company was behind plans to build Europe’s largest cinema over the athletics track at Sport City in Manchester.
Greg Rutherford has a PB session in training, only to have to update his training logs after Chris Tomlinson examined the video and proved timing to be inaccurate.
In a shocking development, Russell Brand is elected the new President of the IAAF. President Brand gets to work immediately by insisting that ‘prize money is an example of the defenestration of sound amateur spirit from this endeavor we call our sporting heaven; it shall be annulled forthwith.’ Mo Farah blocks him on Twitter.
Anthony Whiteman is beaten in the ‘C’ race at Highgate’s Night of 10,000m PBs. He later tells Facebook that he ‘didn’t see it as a race’ and threatens legal action as ‘no one ran a PB’. He also says that the crowd were unfairly helping his opponents.
Rhys Williams loses his first race back after being banned for a doping violation last summer. He tells a press conference that a bad start to the race was the fault of noise in the crowd and had cost him ‘nearly £150,000’.
Ricky Simms denies that Mo Farah has been for a run with Lance Armstrong despite pictures of the pair appearing in several newspapers. Farah blocks Armstrong on Twitter.
The European Team Athletics Championships take place. The BBC devotes the majority of its coverage to trying to guess which Russian athletes are actually clean.
James Dasaolu beats a world-class field in a new 100m British Record of 9.65 seconds. He then withdraws from all further competition until further notice to ‘focus on achieving inner calm’.
Usain Bolt spends an entire 45-minute press conference just staring into space without saying a word. Athletics Weekly run an eight page spread on ‘what Bolt MAY have been thinking’.
Russell Brand resigns from the Presidency of the IAAF after realising that nobody really cares about athletics. Mo Farah blocks the IAAF on Twitter after Tania Farah’s application for the interim role is dismissed.
Ross Murray smashes the World Chunder Mile record at a mid-week meeting in Stretford. The 2012 Olympian runs 4:49.99 and calls for the event to feature in Rio in 2016.
Lynsey Sharp reassures her Twitter followers that she is OK after being ‘rushed to hospital’ with a broken nail. Sharp reveals that she was ‘kept under observation’ for four hours whilst she waited to see a bemused doctor at Leicester Royal Infirmary.
Anthony Whiteman is overtaken on a training run by an old age pensioner riding a bike. The former Olympian tells Facebook that he ‘wasn’t racing and that the pensioner was irrelevant’ to him. In a 754-word rant, he insists repeatedly that he isn’t bothered by the morning’s events.
Mo Farah is photographed horse riding with Vladimir Putin. Ricky Simms immediately denies that the meeting ever took place and that Farah had ‘never even been to Russia’.
Lord Coe distances himself from plans proposed by his company to convert the Olympic Stadium into an extension for the Stratford Westfield shopping mall.
Mo Farah blocks Alberto Salazar on Twitter after he fails to wave at Tania Farah at an Oregon supermarket.
Rhys Williams is caught speeding by police just outside of Swansea. He refuses to accept a place on a speed awareness course or a fixed penalty as he ‘did nothing wrong’. He later tells friends that he had ‘lost £200,000’ as a result of the incident.
Greg Rutherford is barred from entry to the British Championships after his credentials mysteriously go missing. Chris Tomlinson is seen driving away from the event at high speed.
Without a race all year, Usain Bolt tells friends that he is thinking of giving the World Championships a miss to spend more time with his X Box.
Mo Farah tells reporters that he had no knowledge of photos of him training with Kim Jong-un in North Korea. Ricky Simms ends the press conference early and Farah deletes the North Korean leader from Facebook.
Harry Akines-Aryeetey is arrested at Heathrow Airport after attempting to board his flight to Beijing without identification or a ticket. The sprinter flashed his European Bronze medal and expected to be granted free passage to anywhere in the world.
After missing out on a place at the World Championships, Rhys Williams is kicked out of a Cardiff bar in the early hours of the morning. He is seen repeatedly telling bouncers that he had ‘done nothing wrong’ and that he had ‘lost £2 million’.
Mo Farah blocks himself on Twitter after a row with wife Tania over repeatedly leaving the toilet seat up.
Usain Bolt is convinced to take part at the World Championships but only if he is allowed to arrive by spaceship. The IAAF contact NASA for help.
Marilyn Okoro misses her connecting flight to Beijing after horribly misjudging her walk across Hong Kong airport. Fading badly in the closing metres, the 800m star collapsed to the ground just as the plane pushed back.
The World Athletics Championships are cancelled after Lord Coe’s company converts the stadium into a bowling alley.