© Copyright – 2012 – Athletics Illustrated

Canadian 10,000m record holder Simon Bairu, is in no way a shoe-in to represent Canada at the 2012 London Olympic Games, but I wouldn’t bet against him.

Saturday, April 7th, Bairu opened his 2012 racing season by taking in the 5000m event at the Stanford Invitational. He finished twelfth in 13:37.23, he was aiming for 13:45, “13:45 was the goal for the race, so I was definitely happy with that”, said Bairu.

Bairu is trying to qualify for the Olympic Games by challenging the Canadian 10,000m standards, which are A – 27:45 and B – 28:10. For the distance, Canadian’s must run one “A” and one “B” Canadian standard time by June 30th or between June 22nd and June 30th run just the A standard only, according to Athletics Canada’s publication, “2012 Olympic Games – Athletics Canada Qualifying Standards (Outdoor Only)*”.

Bairu’s 5000m 13:37 indicates that he would have run approximately 28:17 if he chose the 10,000m distance at the Stanford Invitational instead of the 5000m. Bairu opening his season and running his first race since his second attempt at the marathon distance in Houston, Texas in January indicates a good early start, especially considering he was attempting to finish in at least 13:45.

I wouldn’t bet against him

His personal best at the 10,000m distance was run two years ago at the Payton Jordan Invitational. It is the Canadian 10,000m record of 27:23.63. Sunday, April 29th Bairu will again run the 10,000m at the Payton Jordan meet.

If Bairu was planning to run 13:45, perhaps he was simply racing the Stanford Invitational to get sub-27:45 race pace feeling and rhythm into his legs. And if 13:37.23 in his season opener when attempting 13:45 at the Stanford Invitational is any indication, expect Bairu to run very near the A standard of 27:45 setting himself up nicely for the fateful June 30th deadline day.

Personal Bests and Achievements

Finished Twelfth at the IAAF World Cross Country Championships
Seven-time Canadian Cross Country Champion
Seven-time NCAA All-American – Wisconsin Badgers
Half-marathon – 62:08
10k – 28:30 (road)
10,000m – 27:23.63 (CDN record)
5000m – 13:25.91
3000m 9:27.30


Video: Canadian and American record runs – 10,000m – 2010 Payton Jordan Invitational