Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Aretha Thurmond nabs final qualifying spot in discus at world championships...

BERLIN, Germany--Renton High School and University of Washington graduate Aretha Thurmond (left/photo by Paul Merca) earned the final qualifying spot in the women's discus trials Wednesday morning at the Berlin Olympiastadion to kick off day five of the IAAF World Track & Field Champioships.

The three-time US Olympian, who had yet to make a world championships final during her storied international career, came through with a clutch third round throw of 61.08 meters (200-5) after throwing 60.09 (197-1) and 59.09 (193-10) over the first two rounds.

Thurmond said afterwards, "I think I just gave my high school coach some grey hairs today. It's been my M.O. unfortunately my whole career. I'm the type of competitor that takes a while to get into a groove. It's like sprinters in a qualifying round, where everyone's so tight and trying to get a feel for what's about to happen".

"The point was to get out there and make it through to the finals. We've got two Americans in the finals and now we can go see if we can put two on the podium."

In the evening session, Marysville-Pilchuck HS graduate Jarred Rome will compete in the finals of the men's discus throw at 8:15 pm local time (11:15 am in Seattle), while Washington State alum Bernard Lagat runs in the finals of the 1500 meter run at 8:25 pm (11:25 am in Seattle), with coverage available on Versus and online at

For more information on the IAAF World Track & Field Championships, please visit

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