Subscribe Today
Track & Field

Track & Field (207)

After two years of juggling injuries, Yohan Blake is back. In the cold and wind of Herzogenaurach, Germany, Blake ran 10.03, telling us afterwards, with a smile, " I did not feel my legs."
 
Then he ran 9.94 in Kingston last week, and the world was, for Yohan Blake, suddenly, a better place.
 
Yohan Blake took the athletics world by storm in 2011, when he won the 100 meters at the World Champs in Daegu. You remember that one, Usain Bolt had a brain fart, and false started, and was out. Yohan Blake kept his cool, and ran down 2003 World Champ Kim Collins, who took the bronze.
By Lindsay Rossmiller
 
PORTLAND, Ore. (June 11-12) ­ In a last chance for some athletes to run times needed to qualify to compete at the Olympic Trials, the Portland Track Festival was also an opportunity for others to get back on the track and sharpen their racing skills as everyone tunes up for the next two months.
 
On Saturday night as an early summer evening chill settled over Griswold Stadium at Lewis and Clark College, the women toed the line of the 10,000 meters in the High Performance section.

If we had dropped an alien being into the US yesterday and they sat on my sofa and watched the NCAA Day three, even they would have been excited by the amazing day of track finals. For once, we did not shoot ourselves in the foot. The finals were exciting, with surprises and the announcing was warmed up and supported the broadcast. 

Here is how Lindsay Rossmiller, who has been providing updates each day for RunBlogRun on the NCAAs, saw day three! —Larry Eder, RunBlogRun

 

David Hunter has covered the NCAA Championships for us for several years now. This is his arguement for the NCAA Championships and how important they are in our sport. We look forward to David's daily columns (along with Lindsay Rossmiller's) on the NCAA Division 1 Outdoor Championships, held in Eugene, Oregon, from June 8-11.

 

Eugene, Oregon

June 7th, 2016

 

Most diehard track & field fans enjoy all forms of championship gatherings. To ask them which one is the best is a little like asking those same fans which IPA beer is the best at Eugene's iconic Wild Duck Cafe. Hey, they're all great!

 

But more recently, a growing legion of track & field aficionados is singing the praises of the collegiate championships, citing any number of facets to their conclusion that the college-level brand of championship athletics is their favorite. Here are some of the reasons they offer:

 

Team Scoring. Except for the nationalistic practice of country medal counts in global competitions, post-collegiate track & field usually lacks this exciting element of competition. The presence of team scoring at collegiate championships - also evident in a less-refined way at the prep level - adds a novel and dramatic element to the competition that just isn't there in national post-collegiate championship events. When team scoring is in the mix, everyone - the athletes, the coaches, the fans, and the media - is continually observing and reassessing the fortunes of their favorite schools as the meet progresses. The shifting sands of team scoring - constantly realigning as favorites falter and upsets occur - add excitement and newly-emerging speculation as the collegians do battle.

 

New Format. Last year's newly-instituted practice of dividing up the 4-day NCAA Div. I Championship into alternating days of gender-specific competitions has generally been embraced as a positive step forward. Critics note the burden the new same-sex scheduling places on individuals performing in multiple events - including the teams for whom these gifted athletes compete - as doublers have less recovery time between competitions. But the proponents of this novel style of presentation point to the singular spotlight these days of separate competition place on both the men and the women - with each getting their undistracted moments in the footlights. Alternating days of competition by gender also makes it easier and clearer to view the building drama of team competition. The media loves the more broadcast-friendly format which seems to translate into expanded TV coverage presented in a more logical sequence that is easier to follow. As one coach recently mentioned to me, "Any presentation format that gets more track & field on television, I'm for it."

 

Relays. Have you ever met a track & field fan who isn't enthusiastic about the relays? Me neither. Invariably, there is a discernible anticipation and a notable buzz among collegiate championship spectators as leadoff runners load into the blocks - a special excitement only rarely sensed with the individual events. Because relay lineups are not chiseled in stone, coaches can strategize in the early rounds and in the final as they have discretion with regard to the four athletes they will assemble and the order in which they run. There is a reason - more than just tradition - why the 4 x 400 meter relay is the engrained show-closer for collegiate championship - and virtually all - track & field gatherings. The dearth of relays at the post-collegiate level provides little opportunity to capture this same excitement and, may I add, does nothing to help our woeful stick-passing among the professionals.

 

More Surprises. With younger, less-experienced athletes and a constant influx of new, hungry talent, results at collegiate track & field championships are less predictable. Upperclass men and women stumble. Underclass men and women break through. Bungles occur as collegiate athletes act like, well, college students. The result is unanticipated drama and outcomes. Case in point: several years ago when Oregon's favored long sprinter Mike Berry - now a seasoned professional - failed to advance out of his 400m semi-final, heads were spinning as many rushed to forecast the points the Ducks had lost and the potential impact such point loss might have on their team title chances.

 

More Heroes. As collegiate championship meets wind down and the team scoring is tight, unsuspecting heroes often emerge. Last year, the Oregon women's squad - wrapped up in the midst of a tense battle for the team crown - looked to middle distance frosh Raevyn Rogers to grab a few key points in the 800m final to help their cause. Her unexpected victory sealed the team win for the Duck women and prompted normally-reserved Oregon coach Robert Johnson to gush to the media about his newly-emerging protégé.

 

The Last Vestige Of Innocence. Let's not kid ourselves. Collegiate track & field at the Division I level is serious business. At the leading track & field powers from the so-called Power 5 conferences, the programs are comprehensive and sophisticated - as the best facilities, superior coaches, and attentive support staffs are all available to help talented and dedicated athletes reach the zenith of their potential. But notwithstanding the big-time business this sport at its highest collegiate level has become, there still lingers a dwindling - but nonetheless present - innocence not detectable among the professional ranks. At these university championship gatherings special moments still occur: the barely-qualified athlete steps up to gain a spot on a lower rung of the podium to capture one or two valuable points to fuel his team's title chase; a spent superstar steps in unexpectedly to run a leg on a championship closing 4 x 400m relay to help his university capture the team crown.

 

Don't get me wrong: track & field is to be savored in all forms and at all levels. To paraphrase the late social commentator Will Rogers, authentic track & field fans never met a track gathering they didn't like. Yet the extraordinary, unexpected, and often selfless performances witnessed when college athletes assemble to battle for national championships seem more commonplace there than anywhere else in our sport. And that overall experience seems to have fueled a growing sentiment that championship track & field at the collegiate level just might be the best. 

The Adrian Martinez Classic is here! So, watch The Rome DL this afternoon, and then, watch the Adrian Martinez, as they have some exciting fields! See you there!

Thursday, 02 June 2016 01:06

Cerritos, Mt. SAC Repeat as CCCAA T&F Champs 2016

Written by

Event by Event Wrap

By Fred Baer, 5CTCA Associate Member Rep

 

SAN DIEGO -- Cerritos College and Mt. San Antonio College repeated as CCCAA Track & Field team champions at the 2016 state meet held at San Diego Mesa College, May 20-21. Both teams wrapped up the titles early, compared to their 1-point wins in 2015.

 

Cerritos scored 92 points, clinching the win after the 200 meters, and finishing ahead of Riverside (80) and College of the Sequoias (75 1/3). Mt. SAC scored 148 points in the men’s competition with Riverside (99) second. Modesto (63) won a tight third placed battle ahead of Sequoias (62), and American River (61).

 

Thursday, 02 June 2016 00:45

HOKA ONE ONE Olympic Trials, NCAA Activities

Written by

Well, it all begins!

 

Please find our flyer for the Hoka One One Endurance Crossroads Clinic. We have a fine group of speakers and if you could help us get the word out that would be fantastic!

 

My next note to you will be on the Multitude of Activities Hoka One One has planned for the Trials and the NCAAs! They will include the following:

 

• “Rock the Blockæ Take Over of Villard St. with Hoka One One occupying the WDC footprint, the Growler USA footprint, and the Hoka One One Sky Box!

 

• Ross and RunnerSpace working with me on the "Last Round Lounge" presentation at the WDC Post Meet! Especially on the HOKA Nights (July 1st, 4th and 9th).

 

• 4 FREE “Power Hour Coaching AM Coaching Clinics” supported by Coaches Choice and Accusplit. Refreshments will be included (Health Warrior, SOS Hydration, etc.) and we’ll feature the ICONS of USA T&F. Coaches contacted include Harry Marra, Lance Harter, Jeremy Fisher, Ralph Lindemann, and Mike Holman. Dates scheduled are: July 2, 3, 7, & 8.

 

• Olympic Legends Night will be July 4 with Reynaldo Brown, John Carlos, Ed Caruthers, plus many others!

 

• Hoka One One Retail Store in Glass Room next to WDC footprint.

 

• Front Sidewalk covered with Mondo Super X product.

 

The Wild Duck will also be providing a Free Bottle of Champagne to any Olympic Trial Winner who shows up at the WDC!

 

I’ll detail this out for you for release next week, and periodically until July 9!

 

Working together, we will make this happen Bigger and Better than ever (which is saying something!!)

 

Hoka One One- Time to Fly … to Rio!

 

 

Yours Through the Spirit of Track and Field,

 

“Peanut” Harms

 

Ambassador of Fun, Excitement,

and Enjoyment at Track Meets in Eugene.

Mystical Running Cult Guidance Counselor 

Wednesday, 01 June 2016 22:40

Sierra Gold Masters Track Meet

Written by
Tuesday, 31 May 2016 20:31

Giving Back at Big Bear Track Club

Written by
By Mark Winitz
 
U.S. track and field middle distance standout Brenda Martinez was always club oriented. Despite her parents' instructions not to, even before she entered elementary school, the precocious youngster would run down the streets of Rancho Cucamonga in Southern California to visit her friends. So, when Martinez was five years old her parents put her in a youth track club, the West Coast Gazelles, to keep her off the roads, on track, and safely occupied after school. The Gazelles ran their workouts on the oval at Rancho Cucamonga High School, which Martinez subsequently attended. And, to this day the 2013 IAAF World Championships bronze medalist at 800 meters maintains her passion for running with a club.
The sub four minute mile has been one of our sport's holy grails. The 1300 men who have broken the mark are most respected in the U.S. and GBR. At Oregon, Bill Bowerman and Bill Dellinger developed many. Lindsay Rossmiller, writing for RunBlogRun, wrote about the Sub 4 Reunion held on Friday night, May 28. Here's her story.
 
Prior to the only U.S. stop on the IAAF Diamond League in the western hemisphere, a group of former athletes familiar with Hayward Field met a block away from the Prefontaine Classic. Nine men who ran sub-four minute miles from 1956-1970 for the University of Oregon had a reunion and the Oregon Track Club invited the public to attend.
 
Jm Bailey (3:58.6, 1956), Keith Forman (3:58.3, 1962), Jim Grelle (3:59.9-1962), Archie San Romani (3:57.6, 1964), Roscoe Divine (3:59.1, 1966), Wade Bell (5:39.8, 1966), Arne Kvalheim (3:59.4, 1967), Dave Wilson (3:56.2, 1967) and Steve Savage (3:58.2, 1970) all broke the four minute mile barrier under famed Oregon coach Bill Bowerman. Eleven of his runners would break the barrier, including Dyrol Burleson (3:58.6, 1960) who couldn't attend for health reasons, and Steve Prefontaine (3:57.4, 1970).
 
On Friday, friends, families, teammates, and the community were in attendance to hear their stories and see for themselves men who belong to a club more exclusive than those who have climbed Mount Everest. They greeted old teammates, signed autographs, and generally reveled in the occasion while the first floor of the Jaqua Center on the University of Oregon campus was full of people asking questions and asking for autographs.
 
When the time came for the program and not everyone could see, organizers suggested the idea of moving the men to the second level of the open air lobby, but it was quickly met by protests that some could no longer climb the stairs.
 
Current Oregon Track Club Elite members Andrew Wheating and Tom Farrell emceed and prompted each with questions. They told stories, shared memories, and still included some ribbing amongst each other.
 
"I thought [Jim Grelle] would do it before I did. I'm surprised it took him so long," said Keith Forman. (Grelle broke it April 28, 1962. Forman was May 26, 1962.)
 
Wade Bell described having a photo on his wall of Dyrol Burleson defeating Stanford's Ernie Cunliffe in the first sub-four mile at Hayward Field. He explained that, "the reason I even came here was to run a sub-four minute mile." Bell said he still has that photo.
 
Wilborn agreed that the ultimate goal and reason for milers to attend Oregon was to break that barrier. Two sets of them set world records in the 4xMile relay and six were eventual Olympians.
 
"I had some of the best milers in the world as my teammates," said Wilborn.
 
Arne Kvalheim was the best in Northern Europe before coming to the U.S.. The Norwegian joked about coming to Oregon only to find he had at least three teammates that were better than him.
 
Jim Bailey, the oldest of the group and will turn 87 this week, still has his Australian accent. He admits, "I had a lot of attention at University, and then went on into oblivion." Bailey was the first person to run below four minutes on American soil and the crowd appreciated his description of exactly what happened during his race when no one expected him to beat his countryman, John Landy.
 
To be part of this group, is something special. Over the years, they have stayed in touch and periodically gathered as a full group. All together in a group, they still act like teammates. They have stayed connected and know each other's families.
 
Connor Divine, Roscoe Divine's son, said, "It's nice to see the guys." He's grown up with them and even refers to Kvalheim like an uncle.
 
And while they come from different eras, they are still connected by their achievements, their coach and their alma matter.
 
"I feel a connection to anyone who's ever come to Oregon and run for Oregon," said Wilborn speaking to Wheating, a 2010 alum and also a sub-four miler.
 
Steve Savage explained, "[the sub-four mile] is something you have on your resumé for the rest of your life.
Page 6 of 15