Saturday, August 25, 2007

Pickler 25th in heptathlon after day one...

Portland's Kara Goucher (center) is poised to pounce on Great Britain's Jo Pavey with less than one lap to go in the women's 10000-meter run at the IAAF World Track & Field Championships, in which she earned a bronze medal here in Osaka. /photo by Paul Merca

In tonight’s session, Washington State’s Diana Pickler threw the shot 36-9 3/4 worth 610 points, and ran the 200 in 24.61, which netted her 923 points. After the end of the first day, Pickler stands 25th with 3510 points.

Shortly before the World Championships, Pickler earned a sponsorship deal with Asics.

If you’re a distance geek, you had to be thrilled with Portland’s Kara Goucher, who upset the form chart with her stunning third place finish in the women’s 10k. For the United States, this marked the first time since Lynn Jennings turned the trick in the Barcelona Olympics of 1992 that an American woman made the podium in either the world championships or the Olympics.

Goucher, taking advantage of a slow pace, ran a season best of 32:02.05 to capture the bronze medal. In the final lap, she took advantage of her speed to rocket past Great Britain’s Jo Pavey with 200 meters to go.

Ethiopia’s Tirunesh Dibaba won the 10 k in 31:55.41.

Among Americans, Deena Kastor was sixth in 32:24.58, while Katie McGregor placed 13th in 32:44.76.

Afterwards, an ecstatic Goucher said, “We’ve been training so hard in the heat. With the pace so slow, I was thinking to myself that this is good for me. With two laps to go, I was thinking that fifth or sixth would be good, but then I thought about running in the sauna suit, and the 90-mile weeks, and the aqua jogging, and I said to myself, ‘sprint!’”

“I’ve never been in a race so rough. I was running in lane 2, but I said that I don’t want to fall, so I hung out there. It’s an honor to be here.”

Tomorrow, Ian Waltz & Jarred Rome will compete in the discus qualifying at 9:30 am, while Pickler continues in the heptathlon.

Good night from Osaka!

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