Boston Marathon finish line

Boston Marathon TV, race schedules

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The 118th running of the Boston Marathon, the world’s oldest annual marathon, is set for its traditional Patriots’ Day start Monday.

Universal Sports and will provide TV and online coverage of the 26.2-mile race that begins in Hopkinton and weaves through six more cities and towns before reaching and finishing in Boston on Boylston Street.

This year’s race has added significance given the twin bombings that rocked the 2013 Boston Marathon, killing three and injuring more than 260. The field, some 36,000 runners, is about 9,000 more than in recent years and accommodates more than 5,000 entrants who ran last year but couldn’t finish due to the bombings.

Increased security includes over 3,000 uniformed police officers and National Guard soldiers along the course, up to 500 plain clothes officers in the crowd, 100 video cameras and emergency operation centers in all eight cities and towns.

The Boston Athletic Association is prepared for one million spectators, double the usual amount.

Boston Marathon Race Previews: Men | Women

The race schedule (all times Eastern):

8:50 a.m. — Mobility impaired
9:17 a.m. — Wheelchair
9:22 a.m. — Handcycle
9:32 a.m. — Elite women
10 a.m. — Elite men and Wave 1
10:25 a.m. — Wave 2
11 a.m. — Wave 3
11:25 a.m. — Wave 4

Universal Sports TV schedule:

Saturday, 4-6 p.m. — Pre-race show
Monday, 8:30 a.m.-1 p.m. — Live race day coverage
Monday, 4-5 p.m. — Race recap
Monday, 8, 11 p.m. — Encore race day coverage

Universal Sports is on a free nationwide preview on all of its distribution partners through Monday.

Four-time Olympic medalist returns to run Boston Marathon again

Ashton Eaton named male IAAF Athlete of the Year

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American decathlete Ashton Eaton was named the 2015 male Athlete of the Year by the International Association of Athletics Federations, the world governing body for track and field. Ethiopia’s Genzebe Dibaba, the reigning world champion in the 1500m, was named the female IAAF Athlete of the Year.

Eaton is the first decathlete and just the eighth American man to win the title. Tyson Gay in 2007 was the last American man to be named.

The honor came due to Eaton’s world-record-setting performance at the world championships held in Beijing this past August. There he beat the previous record, his own from the 2012 Olympic Trials, by nine points. He also set a world record for running the fastest 400m portion of the decathlon in 45.00 seconds.

In the IAAF press release, Eaton said, “Athletes spend the most vigorous years of human life, arguably called the ‘best years’, working to hone their abilities. So, when an athlete competes, what people are witnessing is the manifestation of what a human being is capable of when they choose to direct all of their time and effort towards something.

“I’m grateful and thankful to the IAAF for excellent competitions, the canvases that allow us to display our work.”

He also acknowledged sprinter Usain Bolt and triple jumper Christian Taylor, who were also up for the title: “While I’m honored that I am considered the ‘artist’ of the year, I did not beat Usain and Christian; my work simply differed in design. They are some of the most talented and beautiful performers of all time. I’m flattered to be among them.”

Dibaba has been unbeaten in the 1500m over five races in 2015. Along with winning gold and setting a world record in the 1500 at the Beijing World Championships, Diababa won a bronze medal in the 5000m event.

She gratefully accepted the award, saying, “After being a finalist and narrowly missing out on this award one year ago, I am very proud to be recognized by the fans and experts of our sport.

“I had a great season and truly enjoyed competing around the world, from Monaco where I managed to establish a world record, to Beijing where I finally captured my first world outdoor title.”

Dibaba was recently featured in a family-themed promotional video for the 2016 Summer Olympics in Rio.

MORE: Seb Coe splits from Nike as IAAF president


Olympians celebrate Thanksgiving

Meryl Davis
Team USA/ Twitter
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Nov. 26 – or Thanksgiving to the rest of us – is oftentimes a typical training day for many Olympians and Olympic hopefuls. Here’s a look at how some of them spent the day training, competing, celebrating, and being thankful.

Workout football and food😁👍!!! Happy thanksgiving everyone!!!

A photo posted by Michael Phelps (@m_phelps00) on

Happy Thanksgiving from our cold cuts Turkey to yours! #family #happyhappyheart

A photo posted by @cammileadams on

Happy Thanksgiving from the SwimMAC Parade crew!

A photo posted by Tyler Clary (@tylerclary) on


MORE: NBC’s Thanksgiving Rio promo