Norway’s Sondre Nordstad Moen is due to return to racing at the end of the month ahead of the Berlin 2018 European Athletics Championships in August.
Moen produced a sensational European record of 2:05:48 in winning the Fukuoka Marathon in December but the first three months of his 2018 season have been scuppered by injury and illness which have forced him to withdraw from a handful of scheduled competitive appearances, including the IAAF World Half Marathon Championships in Valencia.
But the former European U23 10,000m champion will return to racing at the end of April. He will line up on the roads over 10km in Wurzburg, Germany on 29 April and he will race over the same distance in Oderzo, Italy two days later.
"I am very happy to have accepted the invitation of the organising committee of two European road races and make my return to racing on the 29 April,” said Moen.
The Norwegian has been a huge improver on the roads over the last two seasons but the 27-year-old has aspirations of performing well on the track this summer.
“The reason why I have chosen these particular races is that I have two immediate objectives in the coming months: attempting a 10,000m national record at the IAAF Diamond League meeting in Oslo and then running at the European Championships in Berlin in August.
“Consequently, while I am actually in a period of building up for these two races and training pretty hard, it is good to keep alive the habit of competing.”
Moen has a lifetime best over 10,000m of 28:15.12 but he has clocked 27:55 for the distance on the roads. The national record he will be chasing in Oslo on 7 June stands 27:32.52 to Are Nakkim from July 1990 - six months before Moen was born.
After some early season setbacks, Moen will be using these upcoming road races to test his shape ahead of the track season culminating in Berlin.
“Unfortunately, the illness and injury that prevented me from competing in the half marathon in Naples a few months ago set me back quite a lot but I’m not looking for excuses and I’m also somebody who gets a lot of pleasure in challenging himself and racing.
“With my coach Renato Canova, we chose to compete in two close events and I'm curious to see how I will perform in the race with hopefully some good work in the legs,” said Moen, who is currently training at high altitude in Iten, Kenya.
“In addition, there will be an U20 international match for European nations on this day in Oderzo. I consider this a very good initiative which I hope will motivate more boys and girls in Europe to be involved in this wonderful sport.
“Living many months of the year in Kenya, where distance running is a discipline practiced at the highest level, I want to be an ambassador for this sport.”
More information on the 2018 European Championships:
- The Berlin 2018 European Athletics Championships will be part of the first multi-sport European Championships along with co-hosts Glasgow.
- It will be a must-watch, must-attend experience that elevates the status of European Champions, uniting existing European Championships to celebrate the highest honour in European sport and celebrating the defining moments that create Champions.
- It is the continent’s ultimate multi-sport event, an 11-day celebration of European sport staged every four years.
- Seven of Europe’s leading sports (athletics, aquatics, rowing, golf, cycling, gymnastics, triathlon) will be brought together for the first edition.
- The European Athletics Championships in Berlin will be staged 7-12 August. The six other sports will be staged in Glasgow through 2-12 August.
- 4500 athletes and 52 nations will compete across the seven sports.
- Potential TV audience of over one billion with millions more across multiple digital platforms.
- Over half a million spectators expected.