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A Column By Len Johnson

Len Johnson wrote for The Melbourne Age as an athletics writer for over 20 years, covering five Olympics, 10 world championships and five Commonwealth Games.

He has been the long-time lead columnist on RT and is one of the world’s most respected athletic writers.

He is also a former national class distance runner (2.19.32 marathon) and trained with Chris Wardlaw and Robert de Castella among other running legends. He is the author of The Landy Era.

A column by Len Johnson My good friend Brian Lenton has asked me to do a column on his latest book: Thredbo, 50 Years Running, 1968-2017. By way of disclaimer, this is as much of a disclaimer as you are going to get. As Brian once told me in another context:...
A column by Len Johnson - Runner's Tribe Most years a runners’ panel is part of Falls Creek Running Week. It was again this year, featuring rising middle-distance star Georgia Griffith, Olympic and world championship distance representative Dave McNeill and London 2017 marathoner Brad Milosevic. Chris Wardlaw was the MC. Inevitably,...
Easy as 1, 2, 3 – not!  A, B, C It’s easy as 1, 2, 3 As simple as Do-Re-Mi . . . One, two, three: that may be how easy love can be, as the Jackson 5 sang long ago. Selection? Now that’s another thing altogether. Two recent controversies – one in Ireland,...
By Len Johnson - Runner's Tribe - Reporting from the Gold Coast The wild weather which washed out the walking events at the Australian 50km championships in Melbourne at the start of December last year turned out to be a perfect storm for Jemima Montag. The then 19-year-old Montag was down...
Len Johnson - Runner's Tribe Sometimes, when we laud athletes for consistency, it seems we are damning them with faint praise. It’s as if excellence can’t really be excellence if it is repeatable. There’s some logic to that. Things cannot be outstanding unless they stand out. What they usually stand out...
Remember when sport and politics didn’t mix (Yes: I know they always have, but let’s pretend the perfect world in which they don’t actually exists). Seeking some respite from the tedium of an Australian election campaign that has not yet left – and probably will not leave – the tit-for-tat...
A Column By Len Johnson In announcing her retirement this week, Alana Boyd got the timing just right. Timing is everything in Boyd’s event, the pole vault. It is no good having the height before the crossbar, no good having it after. For a clearance, you must have the height at...
The longer the Covid-19 pandemic takes to work its way around the world, the further we retreat into the confines of our own homes. Once the earth was our limit (unless you’ve stumped up half a million for a voyage to Mars via Elon Musk). Now, life is restricted to...
On being no.2 | A Column by Len Johnson Someone observed of Merv Lincoln, who died on 1 May after a long illness, that it was difficult to do him justice as an athlete because you always had to start with the acknowledgment that he was never number one in...
Len Johnson - Runner's Tribe Have we got a dog in the fight is the basic question self-interest asks itself whenever a dispute flares. In other words, have we got an interest beyond the fact that many humans are drawn towards conflict – provided they are a safe non-participant. As many...