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By Rich Sands, @sands
(c) 2017 Race Results Weekly, all rights reserved, used with permission
 
NEW YORK (04-Nov) -- The men's and women's USATF 5-K road championships could not have played out more differently here this morning in Central Park. While Shadrack Kipchirchir only snatched the men's win in the final strides, Molly Huddle took control early and had a solo run to her 25th national title, breaking her own course record. The race was held in conjunction with the Abbott Dash to the Finish Line 5-K, which finishes over the same final stretch of roadway that will host the TCS New York City Marathon on Sunday.
 
The men's race set off first from the United Nations on a cool morning (49F/9C), with the entire field in a giant pack for most of the first three kilometers, through midtown and into the park. Virginia Tech grad Tommy Curtin moved to the front with less than a mile to go and started accelerating, with Hassan Mead and Ben True close behind. Olympic silver medalist Paul Chelimo began to sneak up on the inside as the road curved north towards the uphill finish, which triggered another surge from Curtin with 200 meters to go as the still sizable field ascended the final climb to the tape.
 
In a mad sprint to the line, Curtin and Kirubel Erassa nearly tangled while Kipchirchir timed his kick best, coming through to grab the win in 13:57. Curtin, Erassa and Chelimo were all one second behind and the first 11 finishers were separated by less than seven seconds. It was the second USATF title of the fall for the 28-year-old Oklahoma State grad, who took the 10-mile championship as part of the Medtronic TC event in Minneapolis on October 1.
Published in Roads
USATF (8/11/2017, London)—Team USATF made a splash by having its biggest distance-running medal haul in generations at the 2016 Rio Olympic Games. But nothing, it seems, prepared the track world for the stunning 1-2 finish in the women’s steeplechase by Emma Coburn and Courtney Frerichs Friday night at the IAAF World Championships in London.
 
With the win, Coburn set a championship record and American record and became the first American since Hall of Famer Horace Ashenfelter in 1952 to win a steeplechase gold in a global championship. It also marks the first time in history Americans have gone 1-2 in an Olympic or World Championships steeplechase. Equally stunning was a more than 15-second personal best for Frerichs, whose time broke the previous championship and American records.
 
Combined with a 1-3 finish by Brittney Reese and Tianna Bartoletta in the women’s long jump, it was Team USATF’s women at center stage at Queen Elizabeth Park Olympic Stadium, earning four medals on the night to bring the American medal count to 23 after eight days of competition.
Published in Track & Field
Wednesday, 19 July 2017 13:11

WEEKEND ROUNDUP FROM USATF - July 17, 2017

A wrap-up of the weekend's events from USTAF:
 
USATF OLYMPIANS JOINED RETIRED NBA AND WNBA STARTS IN CELEBRITY BASKETBALL GAME TO BENEFIT 1,500 ATLANTA STUDENTS, PARTICIPATED IN AAAG SPORTS FESTIVAL
ATLANTA -- Nearly 1,500 elementary and high school students met their role models and received needed school supplies as retired USA Track & Field athletes joined forces with retired professional basketball players in an all-star basketball game on Saturday in Atlanta, Georgia.
 
The track & field team comprised of Olympic greats such as John Carlos, Mel Pender, Dannette Young and Dwight Phillips. They matched up with several retired professional basketball players including Drew Barry, Stephanie Dunn and Dale Ellis. 
Published in Track & Field

By David Monti, @d9monti

(c) 2017 Race Results Weekly, All Rights Reserved

Used with Permission

 

LOS ANGELES (18-May) -- As the warm Southern California sun set over the Bill Henry Track at Jack Kemp Stadium at Occidental College here, action on the track heated up at the USATF Distance Classic, led by USA-leading and meet record marks by global medalists Matthew Centrowitz in the 1500m (3:33.41) and Brenda Martinez in the 800m (1:58.78).

 

Martinez, the 2013 IAAF World Championships silver medalist at 800m, glided through the first 400-meters behind the pacemaker in a swift 57.23, then bolted to the lead with 300 meters to go.  Pumping her arms furiously as she ran down the backstretch, the 29-year-old Californian did not let up in the final meters and was the only woman to break two minutes here tonight.  She was clearly pleased with her effort and saved something for the Prefontaine Classic 1500m one week from Saturday in Eugene, Ore.

 

"We're smart about training," Martinez told reporters.  "I trust what coach (Joe) Vigil's doing.  I think we're going to peak at the right time."

 

Behind Martinez, three more athletes broke the IAAF World Championships qualifying standard of 2:01.00: Britain's Adelle Tracey (2:00.35), New Zealand's Angie Petty (2:00.44), and the Hoka NJ-NY Track Club's Cecilia Barowski (2:00.90).  Jenny Simpson, last summer's Olympic 1500m bronze medalist, has the 8th best time on the night of 2:02.32, and said the race was a good early-season effort.

 

"I wanted to commit to running hard," Simpson told Race Results Weekly.  She added: "It's a different kind of hard the last hundred of an eight hundred, so it's tough.  It's a strange feeling when you're used to accelerating the last hundred and suddenly, like, you're legs are gone."

 

Centrowitz, last summer's Olympic 1500m champion, had to beat back credible challenges from four-time Olympic Gold medalist Mo Farah, and two-time European championships bronze medalist Chris O'Hare to get the win tonight.  Pacemakers Edward Kemboi and David Torrence, took the field through the first 400 meters in 56.4, and 800 meters in 1:55.1.  Just after Torrence stepped off the track at 1200 meters, O'Hare took off down the backstretch, taking Centrowitz and Farah with him.  Centrowitz stuck to his two rivals, then powered past them entering the homestretch.

 

"Coming in I really didn't know what to expect," Centrowitz told reporters after signing autographs and posing for selfies with fans.  "I was just, like, hang on for dear life kind of thing.  I was happy, obviously, with the time."

 

Farah dug deep in the final 50 meters, passing O'Hare to take second in 3:34.19 to O'Hare's 3:34.35, both comfortably under the IAAF World Championships qualifying standard of 3:36.00.  Eric Jenkins, this year's NYRR Wanamaker Mile Champion, had the fourth-fastest time out of the second section of 3:36.51.

 

In the men's two-lap race, Australia's Luke Mathews was the fastest of three men who broke 1:47 tonight, clocking 1:46.44 over Britain's Kyle Langford (1:46.77) and Britain's Andrew Osagie (1:46.93).  He was slightly disappointed that he didn't make the World Championships qualifying mark of 1:45.90.

 

"I didn't get out as well as I would have liked," Mathews explained.  "I waited and waited and waited until the final hundred and that was it."

 

The women's 1500m went to the Oregon Track Club Elite's Sheila Reid who missed last summer's Olympics because of a series of injuries to her right leg, including bursitis in her knee and a stress reaction in her tibia.  Tonight the Canadian from Newmarket, Ontario, showed some of her old form, out-sprinting USA 1500m record holder Shannon Rowbury on the homestretch to claim the win in 4:07.07 to Rowbury's 4:07.17.  Both women got under the IAAF World Championships qualifying standard of 4:07.50.

 

"Four-oh-seven is still five seconds off of my personal best, but if two months ago if you told me that I would be in a position to run a world standard I would have laughed at you," Reid told reporters.  "I was so out of shape, and really dejected.  I just kind of found my fitness, and found my groove again."

 

There were also sold runs in the two 5000m races, especially on the women's side where Britain's Laura Weightman made her debut at the distance in an excellent 15:08.24.  She was pushed right to the line by USA half-marathon champion Natosha Rogers, who ran a 20-second personal best of 15:08.29.  Three more women got under the IAAF World Championships qualifying time of 15:22.00: Canada's Jessica O'Connell (15:16.79), Boston Athletic Association's Sarah Pagano (15:18.57), and Brooks's Lauren Paquette (15:19.73).

 

"That was the hardest race of my life," said Weightman sprawled on her back in the infield while coach Steve Cram looked on with a smile.  "I'm really happy with that."

 

The U.S. Army's Shadrack Kipchirchir won the men's 5000m in 13:23.74, just off the World Championships qualifying time of 13:22.60.

 

Three women representing Oiselle --Mel Lawrence, Marisa Howard and Alexina Wilson-- went 1-2-3 in the women's steeplechase in 9:40.20, 9:40.40 and 9:40.90, respectively.  They were the only three athletes to get under the World Championships qualifying mark of 9:42-flat.

 

Unfortunately, in the men's steeplechase not all of the barriers were set at the correct height after the women's heat was concluded.  As such, all of the marks --including Hilary Bor's winning time of 8:23.08-- cannot count as qualifying times for the World Championships.

Published in Track & Field