Amine Laâlou

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Amine Laâlou
Amine Laalou (cropped).png
Personal information
Born (1982-05-13) May 13, 1982 (age 32)
Salé, Morocco
Sport
Country  Morocco
Sport Track
Event(s) 800 metres, 1500 metres
Achievements and titles
Personal best(s) 400 metres: 47.57[1]
800 metres: 1:43.25[1]
1500 metres: 3:29.53[1]

Amine Laâlou born 13 May 1982) is a male middle distance runner, who specializes in middle-distance running. He has represented his country at the Summer Olympics on two occasions; in 2004 and 2008. He began his career as an 800 metres specialist and made his global debut at the 2003 World Championships in Athletics. He won medals at smaller international competitions, including the 2004 Pan Arab Games and 2005 Mediterranean Games. He reached his first global final at the 2007 World Championships, taking sixth, and was a semi-finalist at the 2008 Summer Olympics.

He began competing in the 1500 metres and was a double finalist at the 2009 World Championships. He also won gold medals at the 2009 Mediterranean Games and 2009 Jeux de la Francophonie that year. In 2010 he won silver at the 2010 African Championships and was the 1500 m champion at the 2010 IAAF Continental Cup. His personal best over the 800 m is 1:43.25, which is the Moroccan record for the event.

Career[edit]

He started his international track career competing at the younger levels, running over 800 m at the inaugural World Youth Championships in 1999 and reaching the semi-finals at the 2000 World Junior Championships. He won the silver medal at the 2001 African Junior Championships and made the 800 m semi-finals of the senior event at the 2002 African Championships. He made his senior debut on the global stage at the 2003 World Championships in Athletics, although he did not progress beyond the heats stage.[1]

He came close to winning a medal at the 2004 World Indoor Championships but he missed out after coming fourth in the 800 m[1] behind Brazil's Osmar dos Santos. He improved his personal best to 1:43.68 at the Weltklasse Zürich meeting prior to the 2004 Summer Olympics.[2] He did not build on this form on his Olympic debut, however, as he was eliminated in his semi-final and finished in seventh place. Laâlou qualified for the 2004 IAAF World Athletics Final but again finished in seventh place.[1] He closed his season on a high note as he reached the podium twice at the 2004 Pan Arab Games a month later, winning the bronze medal over 800 m and anchoring home the Moroccan 4×400 metres relay team to the silver medal behind Saudi Arabia.[citation needed]

The buildup to his 2005 outdoor season began with a gold medal at the Islamic Solidarity Games and he followed this with a regional bronze behind the Spanish contingent at the 2005 Mediterranean Games.[citation needed] He competed at the 2005 World Championships and was fifth in his semi-final.[1] There were no major competitions for the Moroccan in 2006 but his year was highlighted by a win at the Golden Gala where he improved his 800 m best to 1:43.25, which made him the second fastest athlete of the season after Mbulaeni Mulaudzi.[citation needed] He also finished sixth at the 2006 World Athletics Final. He reached his first global final the following season, finishing sixth in the 800 m at the 2007 World Championships in Osaka. He was just short of the medals at the 2007 World Athletics Final with a fourth place finish.[1]

He performed poorly at the 2008 World Indoor Championships and failed to make it out of the 800 m heats.[3] Competing in the 2008 IAAF Golden League circuit, he continued his rich vein of form at the Golden Gala with a win in 1:44.27. Taking part in his second Olympics, he was a semi-finalist in the 800 m at the 2008 Beijing Games. He began to add the 1500 metres to his oeuvre in the 2009 season and he reached both the 800 m and 1500 m finals at the 2009 World Championships in Athletics. He was tenth in the 1500 m but managed fifth place at his preferred 800 m event. He also became the regional 800 m champion with a win at the 2009 Mediterranean Games and an 800/1500 m double at the 2009 Jeux de la Francophonie.

In 2010 he improved his 1500 m best to 3:29.53 and his best in the mile run to 3:50.22. That year he was fifth over 1500 m at the 2010 World Indoor Championships, took the silver medal outdoors at the 2010 African Championships, and was selected for the Africa team at the 2010 IAAF Continental Cup, where he won the 1500 m gold medal. He took part in the Fifth Avenue Mile for the first time that September and beat Bernard Lagat to win the road race in a time of 3:52.83.[4]

Doping allegations[edit]

It was reported on August 3, 2012 that Laalou has been banned from the 2012 Olympics after testing positive for furosemide, a diuretic used to hide the presence of performance-enhancing drugs.[5]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c d e f g h Amine Laâlou profile at IAAF
  2. ^ Weltklasse Zürich (Zürich, 06 Aug 2004) – Men's 800 m. IAAF. Retrieved on 2010-09-27.
  3. ^ Arcoleo, Laura (2008-03-07). Men's 800m – First Round. IAAF. Retrieved on 2010-09-27.
  4. ^ Rowbury defends, Laalou breaks through at Fifth Avenue Mile. IAAF/NYRR (2010-09-27). Retrieved on 2010-09-27.
  5. ^ Moroccan 1500 Runner Tests Positive, Out of Olys. Runners World (2012-08-03). Retrieved on 2012-08-03.