Two or Three?

I’ve been meaning to post this for a while, it’s been sitting in my phone amongst other scribbles and as I’m starting to plan my race schedule it’s become relevant to me, it’s a discussion on how many rounds the 400M men should run at the British Championships.

Should British Athletics change the men’s 400ms from 3 rounds to 2 with an A+B Final.

Let’s start with the points in favour of 3 rounds.

•It’s tradition, the current format at a major championships is the standard 3 rounds.
•Fans will get to see athletes run an extra race on Friday night.
•Athletes will get an extra race.
•Selection for the Olympics only has to be decided from the 8 athletes in the final.
•Over 3 rounds your less likely to loose the top athletes for the final race.
•The lane draw for the heats won’t have to be seeded, over 3 rounds the best athletes won’t have to run that fast to qualify so lane 1 or 8 won’t be a major disadvantage running 46 seconds.
For 2 rounds with an A+B final

•Races will be of a higher quality as it will be tougher to make the final. Times will be faster.
•It’s closer to international standard, at a global event to qualify from the heats you normally run high 44/45 low, British champs is normally 46 high. It will be a true reflection on who can run at a higher intensity repeatedly.
•The B final gives athletes an opportunity to make the relay squad if athletes run better than the A finalists.
•Putting the first round on the Friday night would actually bring more spectators, a higher standard of athletics will put bums on seats.
•This year 2 rounds would allow athletes to recover for the European championships which are within a few days. It will give the non Olympic qualifiers a better opportunity of success at an international competition, in turn developing the talent pool.
•It’s already in place for the women’s event where this an equal depth of talent.

My personal opinion is that 2 rounds would lead to a better quality event, raising the entry standard would encourage the base of British 400m runners to improve which is only a good thing for the top end. Athletes would have to run 45 low or better to make the final which is closer to international standard where athletes are running 44s in the heats (even 43′s). I haven’t been to a major championships and been able to run 46 high to make the semi finals so dropping a round would help us prepare better for the majors.

I’d like to go the Europeans and defend my title, I don’t understand the decision to have a European Championships in an Olympic year but it’s still a title that’s there to be won. By taking athletes who may not make the individual at the Olympics it would give other athletes an opportunity to gain experience, boost their exposure which could lead to better races and other potential bonuses.

Let me know what you think, it’s unlikely that the schedule would be changed but it would be interesting to hear other people’s thoughts on the trials.




Feck! Its March! I mean, ‘oh my’ time flies…

2016 is in full flow, the indoor season is about to reach its peak as we close in on the World Indoors in Portland and I’m getting unnervingly close to the start of my Olympic season.

The Indoor season this quite late this year, lots of athletes have forgone it as it is an Olympic year but there will be some of the sports super stars on show, I think Ashton Eaton will be competing, honestly he could pick any event he wants and will probably be successful. Unfortunately GB’s Richard Kilty won’t be there to defend his 60m world title but we have quite a few medal shots, Shara Proctor, Tiffany Porter and Greg Rutherford come to mind straight away but I think most of the team will be going state side with medal aspirations.

Recently, I tried my hand at live athletics commentary for British Athletics at the National Indoor Championships, its not something I have my eye on post athletics as there are too many retired athletes trying to get into it; really its because Steve Cram and Tim Hutchins are just really good at it. Maybe when they’re ready to put down the mic in 20 years time I’ll have a go!

Athletics is still in mile 1 of 26 in its belated overhaul, I have been pretty critical of the current regime in charge but its just because I want whats best for the sport, at home and internationally; ultimately I believe that the top guys want to save athletics but its not in my nature to bury my head. Shying away from the issues of drugs and corruption won’t change things for the better and as a fan/competitor/shareholder(?) of athletics I tend to shoot from the hip.

I am hopeful for the sport and as athletics issues aren’t isolated, multiple sports are in similar situations, the pressure is on to make positive changes and restore faith.

I am most importantly hopeful for my own ambitions this season.

Life’s going well for me, my body is one piece, my son has started to sleep through until 6am and I have two weeks before I get back to the sun. Training has been solid, I think/hope that I’m in the last phase of heavy loading but something tells me theres still a long way to go. Coach Reider is the master of getting his athletes to peak when it matters, so I’ll just do what I’m told and trust the plan.

Lactic PoseApril brings the outdoors and Im planning to race everywhere I can, even if things aren’t going well, I still love to race so in my 11th year as a senior athlete I’m gonna get as many in as possible. My first stop will hopefully be Florida Relays on the 1st/2nd April, check my twitter for race updates!

Ciao. MR

Post me to FL

Tommorow I leave Mrs and Master Rooney for a month long training camp, going to warmer climates is normal, but this is the first time I will be away from my son for an extended period. The last 4 months has been the happiest time of my life, parenthood is a challenge but it’s so rewarding, I’m going to miss my little clan but needs must.

Bag #1

I’m looking forward to working with Rana and spending time with the group, I feel fit and determined, far better than December 2014!


Fingers crossed for a successful trip!

My world is far more Telletubies than Watergate

Its bloody cold, standard conversation starter at the moment. In reality, its not gone below zero so were doing ok, it is November after all.

Athletics is in a tough spot at the moment, scandal and greed have dominated the news, I have thrown my few cents in and probably annoyed some people but quite a few people agreed with me, which was nice. Unfortunately the news has taken away from some of the great things that have happened over the last few years and the very recent IAAF Athlete Of The Year Awards. Not enough people will know that Ashton Eaton and Genzebe Dibaba have won this years awards, a terrible shame as their performances this season deserve huge recognition.

 BBC Interview


Lord Coe has ended his relationship with Nike, something I don’t feel would influence his role as IAAF president but he feels its for the greater good of the sport and I applaud him for that. He will always be part of Nike folk law as he has been with them longer than I have been alive and his winning picture from Moscow will live forever.

My world is far more Telletubies than Watergate, training has been solid and my son Jack is becoming a right brute. This time last year I wasn’t in a great state of mind and found it hard to focus on the important things, funny how becoming a father really focuses your energies.

Walks with Jack

Since I joined Rana’s group, he has really focused on fixing my technique; last year my form became lax when he left Loughborough and it had some negative effects on my body. To make sure I don’t make the same mistakes again,  we are filming more of my sessions allowing instant feedback and making sure I’m not making simple mistakes. Rana is in Stellenbosch at the moment which I would have loved to go to but I’m not ready to leave the ‘wee man’ at the moment. I’m going to struggle in January when I go to IMG,  Florida for a month; I’m really enjoying parenthood and I try to spend as much time with Kate and Jack as possible, this paragraph has taken an hour on its own as Jacks woken up from one of his naps.

Its bath time in the Rooney house, Jack loves being in the water and splashing him is the highlight of my day.




Day zero, proper training starts next week, I’ve had a great break and feel really refreshed. Last year I needed more time, this year I’m desperate to get back into it!

Bring on the winter slog!


End of my break… 


If I’m honest I wasn’t massively keen on exposing Jack in front of the camera but I ended up boosting his future ego, I mean, how many kids can say that they’ve been on tv?

Working hard…


Coach Reider

Some great insight from my coach Rana Reider in Athletics Weekly, available in all good newsagents


“Life is like a box of chocolates…”

I’ve often said as an athlete you live for the amazing 1%, the other 99% is pretty 狗屁 and you wonder why you do this.

I love this sport, I love the pressure, I love the training, I love the competition, I love the opportunities it has given me, without the lows you don’t get to appreciate the highs. Yesterday was a 1% day, it’s been a tough 12 months on the track and to run a PB gave me great satisfaction. Today was a 99% day, I ran on my toes rather than my forefoot and it’s an error I’ll focus on not repeating. It would be easy to say I was tired after my heats but I felt really good today and I was confident I could come back and run another 44 low.

Now the focus is on supporting Rabah Yusuf who has made the final and getting ready for the 4×400 at the end of the week.

I’d also like to congratulate all the team on how well they have performed so far and wish them well in the future, I have been impressed by the desire shown by our team to perform well and compete with the worlds best!

Thanks to the people who have kept me on the right path this year, without your help I wouldn’t have achieved the 1% I had yearned for!


Birds Nest

Birds Nest

My Captain, My Captain!

Good Evening from Fukuoka, Japan!
Long haul flights have never been the easiest for me due to my length, after speaking to my broker (Mrs Rooney), I decided to upgrade and make the journey as easy on my body as possible.
Whilst in transit it was announced that I would have the honour of being this years Great Britain and Northern Ireland Captain! In an individual sport like athletics it’s not the same role as say my name sake Wayne’s job for England, but it still has the normal responsibilities associated with the nations ‘arm band’.
The most important job is to deliver a speech to my peers! Over the years I’ve witnessed some rousing tales of victory and perseverance, previous captains such as Larry Achike and Jessica Ennis have set the bar very high! Hopefully I can hold my nerves and deliver the right message to the ‘troops’!
Any advice from the esteemed contributors on #KICCA would be greatly appreciated!!