Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Ethiopian Running Documentary: Town of Runners

Here is the trailer for a new documentary on an Ethiopian town that has produced some of the greatest distance runners the world has ever seen: 

Town of Runners is a feature documentary about young runners from Bekoji - an Ethiopian highland town which has produced some of the world's greatest distance athletes, including Tirunesh Dibaba, Kenenisa Bekele and Derartu Tulu. 
Watch and share our trailer here, explore the stories behind the film, and follow all our news up to the film's release on April 20th April 2012.

Runners from Bekoji have won 8 Olympic gold medals, broken 10 world records,  and won 32 world championships.  This feature length documentary follows a few young runners from this town in their quest to achieve running greatness. It also looks like it follows female athletes, which is an interesting twist on the African running documentaries that seem to focus more on the male runners. It looks fascinating and I hope it makes it across the ocean someday as it seems like it is playing more in the British Isles. The Town of Runners website has additional information and video clips highlighting the town, the featured runners, and other things like the yearly remaking of the town track.

Town Of Runners Trailer from Met Film Production on Vimeo.

Some of the clips on the trailer reminded me of scenes in the Haile Gebrsalasie movie Endurance (which is finally out on DVD at Amazon), although the parents in this movie seemed more accommodating of their children's desire to be great runners than Halie's father did in that movie.

Update: Here is another athlete from Bekoji who is running the Boston Marathon this year. Askale Tafa Magarsa ran 2:22:23 in Dubai in January, a marathon she won last year. She also was the Paris Marathon winner last year.

While I was in Kenya this summer, one of the most relaxing times that I have ever had was at an Ethiopian restaurant outside Nairobi. We had traditional Ethiopian food.

I am not a coffee drinker. I tried it once in high school and didn't like it, so I never tried it again. However, this young lady was making the coffee for us in front of the restaurant, so I had to give coffee another go. It was good, but it kept me up most of the night!

Standing outside led to lots of conversations with the Ethiopian servers. I talked with this gentleman about the great Ethiopian runners, the history of Ethiopia (it is 2003 on their calendar), and their writing system. He wrote my name out for me and somehow I lost it . He also said that the Ark of the Covenant is in Ethiopia. I always though we lost it in some USA military warehouse!

1 comment:

RunningWatchesReview said...

Congrats Jim, This is a great article. The trailer for a new documentary on an Ethiopian town that has produced some of the greatest distance runners the world has is really impressive. I would love to watch this. Great article you got.