Friday, July 31, 2009

Lagat finishes fifth in 1000 meters at DN Galan meet in Stockholm...

STOCKHOLM, Sweden--In one of the last major track meets before the start of the IAAF World Championships, Washington State University grad Bernard Lagat finished fifth in the 1000 meters at the DN Galan Meeting at the Olympic Stadium.

The reigning world champion at 1500 and 5000 meters ran 2:17.52 in the infrequently contested kilometer run, a distance significantly shorter than his specialty.

Ali Bilal Mansoor of Burundi emerged victorious in the event, running 2:16.55, the fastest time in the world in that event this season.

Spectators and athletes enjoyed marvellous conditions at the opening of the meet, but the temperature cooled significantly over the final two hours, hovering in the low 60s, according to the IAAF recap of the meet.

Rainier Beach HS grad Ginnie Powell finished eighth in the finals of the women's 100 meter hurdles, as she ran 13.12. Earlier in the evening, Powell, who will be competing on her third world championship team in two weeks, ran a season best 12.64 to place second in her heat and advance to the finals.

One athlete with Washington ties who most likely won't see the starting line at the world championships is former Washington Husky middle distance runner Ingvill Måkestad of Norway, who finished ninth in the 1500 meter run.

Needing to run under 4:09 to make the IAAF "B" standard for entry into the championships by July 31st, Måkestad fell short, crossing the line in 4:09.96.

According to the IAAF web site, athletes have until midnight August 3rd (Monaco time) to achieve the qualifying standard; however, individual federations have the right to set their own stipulations on qualifying deadlines.

Complete results from the DN Galan meet can be accessed here.

Thursday, July 30, 2009

WSU's Joe Abbott & Courtney Kirkwood along with UW's Angus Taylor at Junior Pan-Ams in Trinidad...

PORT OF SPAIN, Trinidad and Tobago -- Washington State sophomores-to-be Joe Abbott (left/photo courtesy WSU Sports Information) and Courtney Kirkwood are members of the USA team competing at the 2009 Pan American Athletics Championship, July 31-Aug. 2, at Hasley Crawford Stadium in Port of Spain, Trinidad and Tobago.

Abbott, from Reno, won the USA junior men's 800m final with a time of 1:51.54, after running the top time in the prelims of 1:49.78 at Hayward Field in Eugene last month. Abbott finished seventh in the 2009 Pac-10 800m championship and ran a PR time of 1:48.97 in the prelims of the NCAA West Regionals.

Abbott's qualifying race will be held Saturday August 1st, with the finals the following day.

Kirkwood, from Othello, finished third at the USA Junior meet with a throw of 146-feet, 9 inches (44.74m) but was officially invited to join the US Junior team after one of the top two placers could not compete at the Pan Am Championships. Kirkwood threw a PR toss of 170-8 (52.01m) during the 2009 collegiate season. She finished seventh at the Pac-10 Championships with a throw of 147-6 (44.96m) and 10th at the NCAA West Regionals with a toss of 137-0 (41.77m).

The women's javelin competition will be held on Sunday August 2nd.

The University of Washington's Angus Taylor will represent Canada at the Junior Pan-Ams in the hammer throw, which will be contested on Saturday August 1st.

Taylor, from Richmond, British Columbia is the reigning junior national champion in his event.

Kendra Schaaf, the outstanding distance runner for the Huskies and a key cog to the Dawgs' national cross country championship last fall, opted not to compete in Trinidad despite winning two Canadian junior titles at 1500 and 5000 meters.

The 2009 Pan American Junior Athletics Championship will showcase many of the top international junior athletes, age 16 to 19 as of December 31, 2009. The U.S. Junior Outdoor Track & Field Championship in Eugene served as the U.S. selection meet for the Pan Am Championships, while the Canadian team was selected at their national championships in Charlottestown.

For a complete schedule and results of the Pan Am Junior Championships, please click here to access the meet web site.
NOTE: Washington State University, the University of Washington, USA Track & Field, and Athletics Canada contributed to this report.

Lagat, Powell & Måkestad set to run in DN Galan meet in Stockholm...

STOCKHOLM, Sweden--Bernard Lagat, Ginnie Powell and Ingvill Måkestad are among the participants in Friday's DN Galan Super Grand Prix track & field meet at the Olympic Stadium in the Swedish capital.

Lagat, the reigning world champion in the 1500 and 5000 meter runs, will drop down and run the 1000 meters, where he has a personal best of 2:16.18, set last year in Gateshead, England. The former Washington State Cougar face a field that includes world championship teammate Leo Manzano and 2008 world indoor 800 meter champion Abubaker Kaki of Sudan.

Powell ran a season best of 12.70 on Tuesday in finishing fifth in the 100 hurdles at the Herculis meet in Monte Carlo. The Rainier Beach HS graduate will run in the second of two heats in a field that includes Olympic bronze medalist Priscilla Lopes-Shliep of Canada, and American Lolo Jones.

Former Washington Husky Måkestad will run in the women's 1500 meter run where she is vying to dip under the IAAF "B" standard of 4:09.00. Måkestad ran a personal best of 4:09.62 in Heusden, Belgium on July 18th.

The DN Galan Super Grand Prix will be streamed live on UniversalSports.com Friday beginning at 9:45 am pacific/12:45 pm eastern time.

The start lists for the DN Galan can be accessed here
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Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Walker and Powell earn 2009 season bests in Monte Carlo...

MONTE CARLO, Monaco--Current American pole vault record holder Brad Walker of Mountlake Terrace cleared a 2009 seasonal best of 5.80 meters/19 feet 0.25 inches in finishing second to France's Renaud Lavillenie at the Herculis Meeting Tuesday.

Lavillenie, the current world leader in the event this season at 19-8 1/2 (6.01m), won with a jump of 19-3 1/2 (5.88m) to defeat Walker, the reigning world champion in the event and University of Washington graduate.

Walker began the competition with a first attempt clearance at 18-4 1/2 (5.60m), then needed two attempts to clear 18-8 1/4 (5.70m), then made 19-0.25 on his first attempt, then passed the eventual winning height of 19-3 1/2 to try and clear 19-6 1/4 (5.95).

Rainier Beach High School graduate Ginnie Powell finished fifth in the women's 100 meter hurdles, running a time of 12.70, a 2009 seasonal best.

For more information on the 2009 Herculis in Monaco, including the complete results, please click here.

Walker, Powell entered in Herculis meeting in Monte Carlo...

MONTE CARLO, Monaco--Team USA members Brad Walker and Ginnie Powell continue their tuneups for next month's IAAF World Track & Field Championships as they compete in Tuesday's Herculis Meeting.

Walker, the former University of Washington All-American and 2007 world outdoor champion in the pole vault hopes to bounce back from a disappointing performance Saturday in London, where he failed to clear a height.

Powell, formerly from Seattle's Rainier Beach HS, last competed on July 17th in Paris, where she finished third in a time of 12.81 in the 100 meter hurdles, behind reigning Olympic champion Dawn Harper (12.68), and reigning world champ Michelle Perry (12.75).

The Monte Carlo meet can be viewed online via UniversalSports.com Tuesday beginning at 11:05 am, Pacific time (2:05 pm, Eastern time).

The start lists for the Monte Carlo meet is available here.

Former Husky head coach Orin Richburg to assist USA World Championship team staff in Berlin...

LAS CRUCES, N.M—New Mexico State’s head cross country/track and field coach Orin Richburg is heading back to the international stage to continue coaching the USA men’s and women’s relay teams as they compete in the 2009 IAAF World Championships in Berlin, Germany, Aug. 15-23.

Last summer, Richburg, the former head track & field coach at the University of Washington, took the reigns as a relay coach for the USA track and field Olympic team in Beijing, China. He was appointed to this position by a group of his peers and has been a member of the Olympic coaching circuit for several years.

“Being nominated by a group of my peers is very gratifying and I am proud that I get to represent my country,” Richburg said.

Events of the championships are set to begin August 15, but Richburg’s athletes are not set to compete until August 21, starting with the men’s 4x100 meters relay.

Richburg was also the head relay coach for Team USA at the 2006 World Junior Championships in Beijing, China and served as a relay coach for Team USA at the 2007 Pan American Games in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. During his career, Richburg was the sprint coach for Team USA at the 2001 world championships team in Edmonton and the 2004 Olympic team in Athens, and was the head coach of the world championship team in Paris.

NOTE: The sports information office of New Mexico State University contributed to this report.

Monday, July 27, 2009

Thurmond finishes second behind Olympic gold medalist Stephanie Brown Trafton...

PORTLAND--Federal Way's Aretha Thurmond finished second behind 2008 Olympic gold medalist Stephanie Brown Trafton at the World Championships preview meet Saturday at the Mac Wilkins Throws Center at Concordia College in Portland, Oregon.

Brown Trafton threw 208-0 (63.40m) compared with Thurmond's mark of 200-7 (61.14 m).

In the men's discus competition, former University of Washington standout and Olympic Trials finalist Will Conwell finished second with a throw of 182-8 behind Lance Brooks of Illinois, who threw 191-5.

The meet, which was held in conjunction with a throwing clinic for athletes throughout the Pacific Northwest, was organized by 1976 Olympic discus champion Mac Wilkins.

Courtesy of arethathrows.com, here's video of Aretha throwing in Portland:



Complete results from the World Championships Preview meet can be accessed here
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Saturday, July 25, 2009

Bernard Lagat defeats USA teammates Manzano & Lomong to win mile at London Grand Prix...

Reigning world 1500 & 5000 meter champion Bernard Lagat (photo courtesy James Templeton, Lagat's agent) held off the challenge of his Olympic teammates Leo Manzano & Lopez Lomong to win the Emsley Carr Mile at the Aviva London Grand Prix meet Saturday at Crystal Palace in a time of 3:52.71.

Tucking in behind pacemaker David Krummenaker for the first half of the race, who led them through in 1:55.52, the pace slowed down in lap 3, as a 60.8 lap (2:56.32 for 1200) shot down any hopes of a sub 3:50 mile.

Lagat, the former Washington State University All-American, increased the pace on the final lap, running 56.39 for the last 409 meters, and held off the charge of Manzano, who ran a personal best of 3:53.01, and Lomong, who also set a PR of 3:53.35.

" I wanted to win the Emsley Carr Mile, this is important, I thank the fans, without them we cannot do what we do!" noted Lagat in a post-race flash quote given to meet organizers.

Courtesy of media partner flotrack.org, here's the post race interview with Lagat:



Mountlake Terrace's Brad Walker, in his first competition since the USA Championships in Eugene last month, failed to clear his opening height of 5.55 meters (18-2 1/2).

In her first major competition since winning the national championships last month, Vancouver’s Kara Patterson finished ninth in the women’s javelin, throwing 54.18 meters (177-9).

Complete results from the Aviva London Grand Prix meet can be accessed here.

NOTE: Special thanks to Larry Eder from runblogrun.com & The Running Network for quotes and race splits.

Thursday, July 23, 2009

Pete Julian new WSU distance coach...

PULLMAN -- Pete Julian (left/photo courtesy Metropolitan State Sports Information), a highly successful collegiate coach and professional athlete and coach, has joined the Washington State University track and field/cross country coaching staff, Cougar Track & Field Head Coach Rick Sloan announced Wednesday. Julian will coach the men and women middle distance, distance and cross country runners at WSU, replacing Jason Drake who accepted a position at the University of Washington.

"I feel very excited and fortunate that we have attracted someone of the quality of Pete Julian to come and direct our distance running and cross country program at Washington State," Sloan said. "Pete brings a great deal of experience and success as a competitor and as a coach. He has done great things at Metro State with very limited resources, including not having a track, by finding local athletes in the Denver area and developing them into competitors. Pete has a thorough understanding of cutting edge technology in training for the distance and middle distance events. He worked on the Nike Oregon Project with Alberto Salazar. Pete was highly recommended by some of the most recognized distance authorities in the country. The people I spoke with about Pete's knowledge and understanding of distance running were all very complimentary, saying Pete `got it' and understood what it takes in today's running world to be successful. I'm excited about the future of the Cougar distance and cross country program."

Julian comes to WSU from Metropolitan State College of Denver where he served four seasons as the men's and women's cross country head coach and three seasons as the men's and women's track and field head coach. This past year he directed the Metro State men's teams to high finishes in the NCAA Div. II Championships: 10th in the Indoor, 16th in the Outdoor and 14th in Cross Country. The Roadrunners' women's cross country team placed 19th nationally last fall. Under Julian's tutelage, Metro State produced the national 2009 DII indoor and outdoor champion in the men's 800m, Anthony Luna, who ran a school record time of 1:47.90.

During Julian's tenure Metro State garnered 11 NCAA All-America distance honors and 37 Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference honors for sprints, jumps, distance and relays. The Metro State men's track team also received national academic honors from the United States Track & Field/Cross Country Coaches Association (USTFCCCA), finishing in the DII top 20 this year for team grade point average.

For the past three years Julian has also been the director of Tempo Sports, the official distance center of USA Track & Field, in Boulder, Colo., managing and coordinating the elite distance training group. In the summer of 2008, Julian was an assistant coach for the Nike Oregon Project where he assisted world-class athletes leading up to the 2008 Olympic Trials. In 2007 he served as the director of the USA Cross Country Championships and World Team Trials, also in Boulder.

An Oregon native, Julian graduated from Ashland High where he ran for his father, Bob Julian, on the Oregon state high school championship team. He earned four All-America certificates at the University of Portland: three in track and became the first Pilot in school history to earn one in cross country. After graduating with a degree in communications management, Julian spent over 10 years racing professionally in track and road races as a member of Team adidas. He was a member of the United States World Cross Country team in 1997 and 1998, running personal-best times of 3:42 in the 1500m, 13:33 in the 5,000m, and 28:05 in the 10,000m. Julian captured the bronze medal in the 10,000m at the 1999 Pan American Games, and was a finalist in the 10k at the IAAF World Championships in Seville, Spain, that same year.

Prior to Metro State, Julian was a volunteer assistant coach and recruiting coordinator for the cross country programs and Santa Clara University and Regis University (Denver).

Julian is married to Colleen Glyde Julian, a former All-American distance runner at the University of Colorado who has a PhD in medical anthropology and is currently serving a fellowship with the Colorado Altitude Research Center in Denver, Colo. The Julians have a four-year old son named Wade, in addition to faithful pet companions, Boise, a cat, and Miles, a dog.

"We will certainly miss Jason Drake," Sloan said. "He was a great addition to our staff and everyone loved JD, but it was a family decision to pursue other professional opportunities, not only for himself but for his wife, Colleen, who is a doctor of veterinary medicine. But I am confident that Pete Julian will create a lot of excitement about Cougar distance running."

"It is a tremendous honor to coach at Washington State University where the track and field program has such a rich history," Julian said. "Growing up in Oregon and the Pacific Northwest, I was aware of runners like Gerry Lindgren as well as the great field and sprint athletes. Washington State has always been a powerhouse in track and field. To be named to this amazing staff is an incredible honor and I am going to work diligently to continue on the great tradition of the program. I have been fortunate to meet and work with both as a professional athlete and a coach to form some really strong relationships with a lot of good people in the sport. I am very thankful to the people who recommended for this position. I am grateful for the opportunity to coach in the Pac-10. I am really excited to be part of this Cougar family."

NOTE: Washington State University's Linda Chalich contributed to this report.

Hot link for stats freaks!

For those of you out there who just can't get enough stats to whet your appetite, here's a link to a very valuable resource--the IAAF Statistics Handbook for the upcoming World Championships in Berlin!

This is the same thick book that is included in the media goody bag that all journalists receive when they pick up their credentials.

For the first time, this statistical handbook, which has results from previous world championships, including qualifying rounds, is available online.

This nearly 700-page publication also includes national records in every event, athlete bios, and perhaps more information than anyone can process in one sitting!

You can download part one of the handbook here.

Part two of the handbook can be downloaded here.

NOTE: Hope all of you have a lot of paper to print it--it's nearly 700 pages!

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Lagat, Walker & Patterson entered in Aviva London Grand Prix...

LONDON, England--Reigning 2007 world champions Brad Walker and Bernard Lagat are among the headliners that will compete in Friday & Saturday's Aviva London Grand Prix meeting at Crystal Palace.

Lagat, formerly from Washington State University, will run in the men's one mile run in a field that includes fellow Olympic and World Championship teammates Lopez Lomong & Leo Manzano.

Walker, from Mountlake Terrace, will contest the pole vault in a field that includes Olympic champion Steve Hooker and world championship teammates Jeremy Scott and Derek Miles.

The Crystal Palace meet will be Walker's second competition of the season, after winning the USA championships last month.

Vancouver native Kara Patterson, the two-time national champion will throw the javelin in London in a field that includes long time rival Rachel Yurkovich from the University of Oregon.

The link to the Aviva London Grand Prix can be accessed here.

ON THE TRACK: Federal Way's Aretha Thurmond will compete close to home on Saturday, as she will face 2008 Olympic discus champion Stephanie Brown Trafton in Portland at the Mac Wilkins Concordia Throw Center.

More information on the world championships preview meet, hosted by 1976 Olympic champion Mac Wilkins, can be accessed here.

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Jason Drake officially named as assistant coach at the University of Washington...

One of the worst kept secrets in the Pac-10 Conference was officially revealed Tuesday when the University of Washington formally announced the hiring of WSU head cross country and distance coach Jason Drake (left/photo courtesy Washington State University) as an assistant coach, replacing Jimmy Bean, who moved on to private industry.

Drake's hiring had been rumored for the past week both on letsrun.com and in an "Off The Track" piece on this blog.

The next question asked across the state of Washington is who replaces Drake at WSU?

One of the names that's been thrown around on various message boards is Gonzaga track & cross country coach Pat Tyson, who was just hired by the Bulldogs a year ago to essentially get the program going from scratch, and has collegiate experience at both Kentucky and Oregon.

Stay tuned as this saga at Washington State continues to unfold...

The following is the official press release from the University of Washington:

Washington track and field and cross country head coach Greg Metcalf today announced the addition of veteran coach Jason Drake to his staff. Drake served the past seven years as the primary cross country and distance coach at Washington State and will assist in coaching and recruiting distance runners, in addition to numerous other functions designed to continue developing UW track and field as an elite program.

"I am incredibly excited about adding Jason Drake to our coaching staff," said Metcalf. "I have had the chance to watch Jason coach and work for almost a decade now. He has coached and recruited at a very high level his entire career at Colorado and Washington State, and those experiences make him a perfect hire for any head coach. I believe he could be a head track coach in the Pac 10 right now."

Some of the projects Drake will spearhead in addition to regular coaching and recruiting duties include home meet management, implementation of Husky track and field and cross country camps, alumni relations, and fundraising with a goal of obtaining a new outdoor track facility.

"The goal of any head coach is to be surrounded by great people and Jason is a great person," Metcalf said. "He is honest, hard-working, passionate, and grounded. I look forward to Jason working with our staff to propel Husky track to greater successes in the very near future. It is my goal that he helps to connect our current student-athletes and staff with all of our alums and supporters of Husky Track and Cross Country."

Drake spent the past seven years in Pullman, serving as assistant distance coach in charge of the Cougars cross country program the first two seasons before being officially named cross country head coach in 2004. Prior to that Drake began his coaching career at his alma mater, the University of Colorado, where he was an assistant distance coach from 1995-2002 and also served as recruiting coordinator during the final three years of his stint.

"I am very excited to be joining the Husky Track and Cross Country programs," said Drake. "They have had great success recently, and hopefully I can help build on that. My family and I have always loved the city of Seattle, and when Greg approached us about the opportunity to work at the University of Washington we couldn't pass it up. "

Some of Drake's achievements at WSU included leading the men's cross country squad to the NCAA Championships in 2006, its first national meet appearance in eight years and just the second since 1984. Drake mentored Haley Paul to a program-record 14th-place finish at the 2005 NCAA Cross Country Championships and All-America honors. Three more Cougars earned All-American honors on the track under Drake, and Sara Trané won consecutive Pac-10 steeplechase titles in 2007 and 2008. He also coached freshman Joe Abbott to the U.S. Junior 800m title last month.

Drake's time at Colorado coincided with one of the most successful runs by any distance program over the past twenty years. The men's team won the NCAA title in 2001, following a runner-up finish in 2000. The Colorado women were team champs in 2000 as well as runners-up in 1995. Both team titles were achieved by athletes recruited and coached in part by Drake under head coach Mark Wetmore. On an individual level, Drake worked with All-Americans Lesley Higgins (second in mile at NCAA Indoor), Steve Slattery (second in steeplechase at NCAA Outdoor), and Sara Gorton (fourth in 5k at NCAA Outdoors).

Born in Aberdeen, S.D., Drake's prep career at Campbell County High School, in Gillette, Wyoming, included seven state titles. He then moved on to Colorado, running middle distance events on the track and for the cross country squad. Drake earned All-America honors as a member of CU's 1994 indoor distance medley relay team and also garnered several Academic All-Big Eight Conference accolades while earning a Bachelor of Science degree in environmental conservation.

In 1999, Drake founded the Colorado Elite Track Club, a nonprofit club for post-collegiate female middle and long distance runners. The club was home for several world-class runners including Shayne Culpepper (2000 Olympic team 1500m and two World Cross Country teams), Janet Trujillo (2002 World Cross Country team and fifth place in 2001 USATF 1500m Outdoor Championships), and Sarah Toland (2002 World Cross Country team).

Drake now rounds out a Husky track staff that includes Pat Licari (pole vault/jumps/multis), Raul Sheen (sprints/hurdles/relays), Kelly Strong (women's distance), and Reedus Thurmond (throws).

Drake and his wife Colleen have a four-year-old daughter Riley and a five-month-old son Benjamin.

NOTE: The University of Washington and Washington State University contributed to this report.

Monday, July 20, 2009

Ian Waltz finishes seventh in Rethymno...

RETHYMNO, Greece--Ian Waltz finished seventh in the discus at the Vardinoyannia International Track & Field Meeting in Rethymno, Greece on Monday.

Waltz, the two-time Olympian from Washington State University, had a best throw of 60.27 meters (197-9).

The event was won by reigning world and Olympic champion Gerd Kanter of Estonia, who threw 69.10 meters (226-8).

In the women's pole vault, former University of Washington standout Carly Dockendorf failed to clear her opening height of 4.25m (13-11 1/4).

Complete results from the Vardinoyannia International Track & Field Meeting can be accessed here.

Ingvill Makestad runs 1500m PR at Heusden...

HEUSDEN, Belgium--Former University of Washington middle distance runner Ingvill Måkestad from Norway set her second straight personal best, running 4:09.62 to finish second in the KBC Nacht Van De Atletiek track meet Saturday.

The race was won by Great Britain's Hannah England, a former standout at Florida State University, who ran 4:08.96.

Below is a post race interview with Måkestad, courtesy of media partner Flotrack, where she states that the most important part of her success this season is getting over the injuries that have plagued her over the last several years.

She will need to run at least 4:09.00 in order to be selected by the Norwegian federation for next month's IAAF World Track & Field Championships.



Results from the KBC Nacht Van De Atletiek track meet can be accessed here...

Saturday, July 18, 2009

Kendra Schaaf wins two Canadian junior titles...

CHARLOTTETOWN, Prince Edward Island - Husky sophomore-to-be Kendra Schaaf (left/file photo by Paul Merca) continued her stellar summer with two dominant wins at the Canadian Junior Track & Field Championships Saturday at the University of Prince Edward Island.

Schaaf, a native of Craven, Saskatchewan, started her day with a win in the 1,500-meters. Competing for her club team, Queen City Striders, Schaaf ran 4:20.50 to beat Jessica Parry by nearly four seconds. The time was a meet record.

In the evening session, Schaaf returned to decimate the field in the 3,000-meters. Once again Schaaf broke the meet record, by five seconds this time, winning in 9:14.62. Second-place went to Victoria Hanna who was nearly 40 seconds back in 9:54.29.

Schaaf was also second in the 5,000-meters at the senior Canadian National Championships held last month. Her two junior track titles today are her first, adding to the junior cross country title she won in 2007. Last year Schaaf was 3rd in the 3,000m and 4th in the 1,500m at junior nationals, evidence of her steady improvement since last year despite redshirting her first collegiate track season after she led the Husky cross country team to the national title.

Also earning a junior national title on Friday was Angus Taylor in the hammer throw. A Regional competitor in his first season at UW this year, Taylor threw the junior implement 211-feet even. That was more than 20 feet farther than the next closest finisher.

NOTE: The University of Washington contributed to this report.

Ex-WSU jumper Ebba Jungmark ties for fifth in European U-23 Championships...

KAUNAS, Lithuania--Former Washington State University high jumper Ebba Jungmark from Sweden tied for fifth in the finals of the European Athletics Under-23 competition Saturday, clearing a season best of 1.86 meters (6-1 1/4).

Jungmark cleared the first three heights of the competition on the first attempt, but needed three tries to clear her season best.

Russia's Aleksandra Shamsutdinova won the competition with a leap of 6-2 1/4 (1.89m).

The qualifying standards for a possible return to the IAAF world championships in Berlin in that event are 1.91m (6-3 1/4), and 1.95 m (6-4 3/4).

Complete results from the European Athletics Under-23 Championships can be accessed here.

Friday, July 17, 2009

Ebba Jungmark in finals of European U23 Championships...

KAUNAS, Lithuania--Former Washington State University standout high jumper Ebba Jungmark qualified Thursday for Saturday's finals in the European Athletics U23 Championships in Kaunas, Lithuania.

The 2008 NCAA indoor high jump champion cleared 5-10 3/4 (1.80 m) to advance to Saturday's final.

Jungmark, a member of Sweden's world championship team in 2007, left Washington State after competing for the Cougars in 2008. She was third in the 2007 European U23 meet, and has a 2009 season best of 5-11 1/4 (1.81 m).

Jungmark's personal best is 6-3 1/2 (1.92 m) set in 2007.

Results from the European Athletics U23 meet can be accessed here.

Bekele defeats Lagat over 3000 meters in Paris; Ginnie Powell third in 100m hurdles...

PARIS, France--The anticipated Kenenisa Bekele/Bernard Lagat duel over 3000 meters turned into no contest as Ethiopia's two-time Olympic 10000 meter champion defeated the former Washington State All-American and reigning double world champion at Friday's Meeting Areva at the Stade de France.

The Ethiopian superstar kept himself in the running for at least a share of the $1 million jackpot awarded to any athlete who goes undefeated in the Golden League series of meets.

Competing under rainy skies and cool temperatures in the French capital, Bekele judged his head to head confrontation over 3000m with Bernard Lagat to perfection. The fourth lap of 59.7 did the damage and destroyed the hopes of his American rival, allowing the Ethiopian to then gradually widen his advantage on the reigning World 1500m and 5000m champion. With these tactics the Ethiopian, who holds the 5000m and 10,000m Olympic crowns and possesses a mean sprint of his own, never allowed Lagat to position himself for any attack.

With a mist of rain already in the stadium air Bekele hit the bell (6:29) with holding a good 20 meters or more advantage on his principal opponent and brought the race home in 7:28.64. Lagat had given the challenge everything he had, finishing in a outdoor personal best of 7:33.15. France’s Mourad Amdouni was third in a time of 7:37.50, while Chris Solinsky, a new member of the Oregon Track Club, ran 7:37.12 for fourth.

Courtesy of media partner Flotrack.org, here's a video interview with Lagat after the race:



In Friday's meet, all four contenders for the $1 million Golden League jackpot--Bekele, Kerron Stewart, Sanya Richards, and Yelena Isinbayeva--emerged victorious.

In the women's 100 meter hurdles, three-time World Championships team member Ginnie Powell from Seattle's Rainier Beach High School, finished third in a time of 12.81, behind reigning Olympic champion Dawn Harper (12.68), and reigning world champ Michelle Perry (12.75).

Complete results from the Meeting Areva can be accessed here
.

NOTE
: The IAAF contributed to this report.

USA Track & Field releases Annual Report...

USA Track & Field, the national governing body for track and field, long-distance running and race walking, on Friday made public its first full Annual Report, available online and in print.

Produced internally by USA Track & Field, the 2008 USATF Annual Report includes a candid, joint interview with President/Chair Stephanie Hightower and CEO/General Secretary Doug Logan, key athlete profiles, a summary of USATF goals and community outreach efforts, a recounting of 2008 athletic performances, a report on Project 30, and the organization's audited 2008 financials.

With a focus on leadership and the vision for USATF's future, the 44-page report is highlighted by dramatic photography and graphical elements that are hallmarks of the USATF brand.

"To be taken seriously as a company, one of the things we need to do is issue an accounting of ourselves on an annual basis," Logan said. "Our goal was to produce a document with a look that conveys our corporate culture while providing a mix of cold, hard facts and insight into the more intangible aspects of USA Track & Field."

"For several years, we have talked about doing an annual report," Hightower said. "That this document has debuted during a time of tremendous change for USATF is no accident. With it, we are providing an accounting of ourselves over the last year and also giving the public insight into where we are heading."

Printed by Sport Graphics, Inc., of Indianapolis, the 2008 USATF Annual Report is available to the public online at http://www.usatf.org/about/annualreport/ .

NOTE: Jill Geer of USA Track & Field contributed to this report.

Thursday, July 16, 2009

Jordan McNamara now a member of the American sub-4 minute mile club...

Auburn Riverside graduate Jordan McNamara (left/file photo by Paul Merca), currently competing for the University of Oregon, became the latest American to join the sub-4 club, as he broke four minutes in the mile for the first time at Thursday night's all-comers track meet at Eugene's Hayward Field.

With Oregon Track Club Elite's Tom Brooks, a 2007 world championships team member in the steeplechase doing the pace setting, McNamara, who finished tenth in the 1500 at the USA Outdoor Championships last month, and eleventh at the NCAA Championships, ran 3:59.87 to become one of over 320 Americans to crack that magical barrier (note that the list was last updated in March).

On his Facebook page, McNamara, who once attended the University of Washington before transferring to Oregon via Lane Community College in Eugene, wrote, "3:59.87!!! Officially a sub 4 miler!! Big thanks to everyone who supported or showed up!"

Courtesy of media partner RunnerSpace.com, here is the video of Thursday night's race:

Bernard Lagat stands in the way of Kenenisa Bekele's quest for $1 million in Paris Friday...

PARIS, France--One of the premier matchups of Friday's Meeting Areva at the Stade de France in Paris is Washington State grad Bernard Lagat against Ethiopia's Kenenisa Bekele over 3000 meters.

Lagat, the reigning world champion at 1500 & 5000 meters enters this stop on the Golden League series of meets after winning the 1500 Sunday in Tangier, Morocco in a season best time of 3:32.56.

Meanwhile, Bekele, the reigning world and Olympic champion at 10000 meters, is steadily returning to form from an injury sustained last autumn. He showed in Rome last week with his 12:56.23 over 5000m that some of the old power is returning, and he’ll certainly need more than his reputation to hold off Lagat who ahead of his own approaching World title defense in Berlin would obviously love to knock down the "Ethiopian Lion".

Bekele has extra motivation to beat Lagat, as with his win in Rome last week, plus triumphs in the Golden League series meets in Berlin and Oslo, he is one of four athletes, along with sprinters Kerron Stewart of Jamaica (100m), Sanya Richards of the USA (400m), and pole vaulter Yelena Isinbayeva of Russia (pole vault) still in the hunt for the $1 million Golden League jackpots for going undefeated in the series, which continues in Zurich on August 28th, and concludes in Brussels on September 4th.

Lagat won over 3000m in Eugene at the Nike Prefontaine Classic in 7:35.92. While Bekele has yet to race that distance in 2009, his PB is 7:25.79 (2007), and Lagat’s PR is 7:33.51 (2000) though he’s been faster indoors. Incredibly these two men have never met over this distance before!

"Bernard is excited about the 3000 in Paris. He looked great in Tangiers on Sunday and is in pretty good shape going into this race. It has the makings of a fantastic race." according to James Templeton, Lagat's agent.

Lagat's excitement can't be contained, as he said on his Twitter page, "I really wish that the race was tonight".

Rainier Beach HS graduate Ginnie Powell will run in the 100 meter hurdles, facing Olympic champion Dawn Harper, and reigning world champion Michelle Perry.

The Meeting Areva will be streamed live on UniversalSports.com Friday beginning at 11 am pacific/2 pm eastern time.

OFF THE TRACK: Sources have confirmed a letsrun.com post that current WSU distance coach Jason Drake will be hired as an assistant coach at the University of Washington, replacing Jimmy Bean, who left after the NCAA Championships to work in sales for Alter-G.

Mart Israel third, Jarred Rome fourth in Lucerne...

LUCERNE, Switzerland--Former Washington Husky Mart Israel from Estonia finished third in the discus at the Lucerne Spitzen Leichtathletik track meet Wednesday.

Israel, a member of Estonia's world championship and Olympic teams the last two years, threw 63.04 meters (206-10) in a meet won by fellow countryman, training partner and reigning world and Olympic champion Gerd Kanter, who threw the disc 67.42 meters (221-2).

Marysville native Jarred Rome finished fourth with a throw of 62.26 meters (204-3).

Complete results from the Lucerne Spitzen Leichtathletik meet can be accessed here.

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Seven Huskies named by USTFCCCA to 2009 All-Academic team...

Seven University of Washington track athletes were honored this week by the U.S. Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches Association for their performances in the classroom as well as in competition, as the Association announced its 2009 All-Academic team spanning the indoor and outdoor seasons.

To qualify for the USTFCCCA All-Academic Track and Field Team, the student-athlete must have compiled a cumulative grade point average of 3.25 and have met either the NCAA Division I Indoor automatic or provisional qualifying standard or the NCAA Division I Outdoor regional or national qualifying standard in their respective event.

Washington had three All-Americans this season that also carried 3.25 GPAs. Sophomore Scott Roth (pole vault), freshman Jeremy Taiwo (multis), and freshman Christine Babcock (mid-distances) all pulled off the impressive double. Roth was the NCAA runner-up in the pole vault, while Taiwo broke the school's heptathlon record indoors and was 12th at NCAA's. Babcock was an All-American on the women's distance medley relay and an NCAA finalist outdoors in the 1,500m.

Pole vaulters Ryan Vu and Lara Jones were also honored. Vu, a junior, was ranked in the Top-20 outdoors and was one of three Huskies to clear 17-6 this year. Jones made the NCAA provisional mark indoors and competed at Regionals outdoors in her one and only year at UW after transferring from Duke.

Also making the team were women's distance runners Allison Linnell and Kenna Patrick. Linnell made Regionals as just a freshman and ran the sixth-fastest steeplechase in school history, while Patrick was a Regional 5k qualifier who posted the ninth-best mark all-time at UW.

2009 USTFCCCA DIVISION I ALL-ACADEMIC TRACK & FIELD TEAM (UW Only)

Men:
Scott Roth, So.
Jeremy Taiwo, Fr.
Ryan Vu, Jr.

Women:
Christine Babcock, Fr.
Lara Jones, Sr.
Allison Linnell, Fr.
Kenna Patrick, So

NOTE: The USTFCCCA & the University of Washington sports information office contributed to this report.

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Nike+ SportBand (part deux) now ready for consumption...

NIKE, Inc. (NYSE: NKE) introduced the new Nike+ SportBand, giving runners real-time performance feedback on their distance, pace, time and calories burned with just a glance at their wrist. Nike also redefined the online running experience by merging the successful site nikeplus.com and its close to 2 million members together with nikerunning.com.

The Nike+ SportBand features a new screen with a white background to enhance visibility and a welded seal to improve water resistance. It will be available in grey with an interior pink band, anthracite (dark grey) with a yellow interior band, and black with a red interior band. Runners who enjoy listening to music may continue to hear their run details through the Apple iPod nano, iTouch or iPhone systems. The Nike+ SportBand will be available in the U.S. on July 15, with a suggested retail price of $59 USD.

(note: See article here on the original Nike+ SportBand written in April 2008)

“We’re giving runners a seamless, comprehensive, one-stop online destination for all their needs,” said Leslie Lane, Global Vice President and General Manager for Nike Running. “From finding the right gear, the latest event details, tracking progress and connecting to friends through Nike+, we’re helping runners hit a new stride.”

Nike has merged the popular nikeplus.com website and its close to 2 million members with nikerunning.com to give users a one-stop running destination online. In addition, nikeplus.com has added many new features and social media opportunities including:

Personalization – The new navigational system includes a customizable homepage for members providing at-a-glance views of your training, progress in goals and challenges, and your Nike+ Mini. Now runners can personalize every run to illustrate their mood, weather, terrain, route and more.

Find Your Friends – Runners will now be able to search for like-minded and similarly-skilled runners, accept new friend requests and initiate challenges in conjunction with their favorite social media platforms. And because no good run should go unpublished, runners can broadcast their own successes beyond Nike+, with automatic updates to Facebook status, Twitter feeds and much more.

Upgraded Challenges – Once runners tap into their own personal running network, Nike+ will now recommend challenges from the gallery to help inspire a little healthy competition with other runners who have similar running styles or profiles.

New Shoe Finder – This feature asks runners to answer a few simple questions in order to receive a customized shoe recommendation based on the latest shoe technology.

Improved Goals and Challenges – In addition to helpful news, training tips, and event details, the newly redesigned site also features new professional coaching programs from some of Nike’s top running coaches and athletes. Runners can choose from a pre-set coaching program, or personalize their own routine and goals with more flexibility.

Lastly, Nike is launching a Nike+ iPhone mobile site to give users access to Nike+ data anywhere.

With my purchase of an Apple iPhone 3G S a few weeks ago, I'm currently using the phone's built-in Nike+ function to track my mileage (or what little I'm doing, as I'm still having issues with my Achilles tendons). I hope to have a writeup on the next generation Nike+ SportBand soon, body willing...

NOTE: Special thanks to Jacie Prieto of Nike media relations for contributing to this article.

USA Indoor Track & Field Championships in Albuquerque the next three years...

Doug Logan, CEO, USA Track & Field announced Tuesday at a press conference in Albuquerque, N.M., that the 2010, 2011 and 2012 USA Indoor Track & Field Championships, the final event of the Indoor Visa Championship Series, will be held in Albuquerque, N.M.

Dates for the Championships will be February 27-28, 2010, February 26-28, 2011 and February 25-26, 2012. The Albuquerque Convention and Visitors Bureau, along with the New Mexico Sports Authority, the University of New Mexico and USATF New Mexico, is the official host for the three championship meets.

"All of us at USA Track & Field are excited that Albuquerque will play host to our USA Indoor Track & Field Championships the next three years," said USATF CEO Doug Logan. "We look forward to working with the Convention and Visitors Bureau, along with their partners and sponsors, in hosting what promises to be three great events in Albuquerque. We expect the 2010, 2011 and 2012 USA Indoor Championships to be among the finest ever."

In addition to competing for a total prize purse of $117,000 each year, U.S. athletes will have the opportunity to qualify for Team USA events, including the 2010 IAAF World Indoor Championships in Doha, Qatar and 2012 IAAF World Indoor Championships in Istanbul, Turkey.

The USA Indoor Championships had been in Boston at the Reggie Lewis Center from 2003-2009 and were last in Albuquerque in 1966 when the meet fell under the guise of the AAU. And in 1968, the U.S. Olympic Team Trials for the marathon and race-walking events were held on the streets of Alamosa, located at 7,544 feet above sea level, comparable to the elevation of 1968 Olympic host Mexico City.

"Albuquerque is thrilled to host the Indoor Championships beginning in 2010. We look forward to working with USATF and our local partners to put on three years of outstanding events and showcase our area to the track and field community from across the country," said Dale Lockett, President/CEO of the Albuquerque Convention and Visitors Bureau.

Albuquerque's portable indoor track features a red and white Mondo surface that is state-of-the-art with 6-36" 200-meter lanes on the 60-degree banked oval, 8- 42" 60-meter straightaway lanes running the entire length of the infield which are also the surface for the high jump. This includes two jumping runways and pits, areas for shot put, weight throw, pole vault, and high jump events. The track is stored in a warehouse when not in use.

For more information on the USA Indoor Track & Field Championships, visit www.usatf.org.

NOTE: Vicky Oddi of USA Track & Field contributed to this report.

Sunday, July 12, 2009

Bernard Lagat & Jarred Rome win in Tangier...

TANGIER, Morocco--Washington State grad Bernard Lagat emerged victorious in the 1500 meter run at the Tangier Meeting International in Northern Morocco, clocking a season best time of 3:32.56.

Lagat was one of the headliners in the second edition of this meet, hosted by his good friend and former rival Hicham El Guerrouj.

During a press conference back in late March to promote the meet, Lagat told members of the Moroccan media that “A wonderful friendship between Hicham and me was born from our rivalries on the track and today I am here to support my friend in this beautiful country of Morocco. I am proud to have been invited to compete here and I will do everything I can to be part of the success of the second edition of this meeting.”

That he did.

Lagat, the reigning world champion at 1500 and 5000 meters, cruised to a 1.13 second victory over Moroccans Bensghir Yassine (3:33.69) and Abdelaati Iguider (3:34.11), towing the duo towards 2009 season bests.

Marysville's Jarred Rome won the discus, spinning the platter 61.20 meters (200-9).

For complete results from the Tangier Meeting International, please click here.

Friday, July 10, 2009

Ginnie Powell 7th in Rome...

Seattle native Ginnie Powell finished seventh in Friday's 100 meter hurdle final at the Golden Gala meet at Rome's Stadio Olimpico.

Competing in fair skies and temperatures in the mid-70s, Powell, who attended Rainier Beach High School and the University of Southern California, ran a season best 12.79 in the competition, that included all three Olympic medalists from Beijing.

The race was won by Olympic champion and former Pac-10 rival Dawn Harper in a time of 12.55.

Complete results from the Golden Gala meet can be accessed here.

Ginnie Powell to run 100h at Golden Gala in Rome...

Seattle native Ginnie Powell is entered in Friday night's Golden Gala meet in Rome, where she will run in her specialty, the 100 meter hurdles.

Three days earlier, Powell, who attended Rainier Beach High School in south Seattle, ran 12.83 in Lausanne, Switzerland in her first meet on the European circuit after the USA Outdoor Track & Field Championships in Eugene.

Speaking of Lausanne, here's a link to a short video, courtesy of media partner Flotrack, of what life is like on the circuit, as many of the athletes competing in Lausanne move on to Rome...enjoy!

Remember, you can watch the Golden Gala meet on Universal Sports!

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Ginnie Powell 7th in Lausanne; Bernard Lagat 8th in 800...

LAUSANNE, Switzerland--In their first race since competing in Eugene at the USA Championships, hurdler Ginnie Powell from Rainier Beach HS finished seventh in the 100 meter hurdles, and former Washington State All-American Bernard Lagat finished eighth in the 800 meter run at the Lausanne Super Grand Prix meet under rainy conditions.

Australia's Sally McLellan won the race in 12.60, while Powell, who was still shaking off the effects of traveling from the United States ran 12.83.

Courtesy of media partner flotrack.org, here's the post race interview with Powell:



As he did at the USA Championships in Eugene, reigning double world champion Bernard Lagat dropped down from 1500 meters to the 800, finishing eighth in a season best time of 1:46.84.

Here's his post-race comments, courtesy of media partner flotrack.org:

Track and Field Videos on Flotrack



Powell moves on to Rome for the Golden Gala meet on Friday, while Lagat will run a 1500 in Morocco on Sunday.

Complete results from the Super Grand Prix meet in Lausanne can be accessed here.

Monday, July 6, 2009

Jessica Pixler named USTFCCCA national D-II indoor track scholar of the year...

Making her mark in class as well as in competition is the norm for Jessica Pixler (left, #56/photo courtesy Seattle Pacific).

And the Seattle Pacific distance running star earned more recognition for both on Monday, being named the Division II Indoor Track Scholar Athlete of the Year by the U.S. Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches Association.

In addition, seven Falcon teammates joined Pixler on the women’s All-Academic team that takes into account both indoor and outdoor performances.

Pixler (Sammamish, Wash./Eastlake HS), who’ll be a Falcon senior in the fall, won her third straight mile title and added her first 5,000-meter crown at the NCAA D-2 indoor championships in March. Her performance in Houston helped the Falcons take sixth place in the team standings.

Pixler has a 3.92 grade-point average as an English major at SPU. This was her second USTFCCCA national honor for the just-completed school year. Last fall, she was named the D-2 Cross Country Scholar Athlete of the Year after winning her second straight NCAA crown in that sport.

In June, Pixler was named the Seattle Pacific Athlete of the Year for the third straight time. Along with her cross country and two indoor track titles, she won the 1,500 meters at the NCAA outdoor track meet in May. That gave her four NCAA championships this past year and eight for her career.

Joining Pixler on the women’s D-2 All-Academic team were junior Lisa Anderberg (Edmonds, Wash./Kamiak HS, 3.89 in global development studies), senior Kelsey Burns (Seattle/Kennedy HS, 3.47 in psychology), junior Kate Harline (Orem, Utah, 3.59 in education certification), junior Jane Larson (Fall City, Wash./Cedar Park Christian HS, 3.78 in English), sophomore Jennifer Pike (Vancouver, Wash./Skyview HS, 3.61 in biology), senior Jeeni Schantin (West Linn, Ore., 3.92 in Sociology) and senior Lauren VerMulm (Mount Vernon, Wash./Mount Vernon HS, 3.68 in nursing).

To earn a spot on the All-Academic team, a student-athlete must have a cumulative GPA of 3.25 or higher and have posted an NCAA automatic or provisional qualifying mark in their event or events.

NOTE: Seattle Pacific University and the USTFCCCA both contributed to this report.

Friday, July 3, 2009

Former Husky Ingvill Måkestad second at ExxonMobil Bislett Games over 800m...

OSLO, Norway--Former University of Washington standout Ingvill Måkestad (left/photo courtesy University of Washington) finished second in the 800 meter run at the the ExxonMobil Bislett Games Friday at Bislett Stadium.

Måkestad, who competed at Washington during the 2004 season, ran a personal best time of 2:02.54 to finish behind Great Britain's Claire Gibson, who won with a time of 2:01.42.

According to statistics compiled by the University of Washington, Måkestad, a native of Odda, Norway, ran 4:42.17 indoors over one mile, and 9:35.25 over 3000 meters in her one season as a Husky. She finished ninth at the 2003 Pac-10 cross country championships, and was Washington's #2 runner at the NCAA championships that season.

Måkestad is the reigning Norwegian national champion at 800 and 1500 meters.

Complete results of the ExxonMobil Bislett Games, one of the premier events in the IAAF Golden League meetings, can be accessed here.

Major coaching shakeup on the West Coast...

Two major pieces of news involving high-profile track & field coaches on the West Coast have surfaced in recent days.

First came the news out of the US Olympic Training Center in Chula Vista, California that resident coach Dan Pfaff was hired by UK Athletics to head up a second British high performance center in Lee Valley.

Pfaff, who coached Donovan Bailey to the 1996 Olympic title over 100 meters, was recently working with a group of athletes at the Olympic Training Center, including Mountlake Terrace's Brad Walker.

Next comes word out of UCLA that the contract of long time throws coach and head men's coach Art Venegas was not renewed, according to Glenn L. Toth, Sr. Associate Athletic Director and sport supervisor for the track and field program.

"We appreciate everything Art has done for the program during his 28 years as both an assistant and head coach," said Toth. "But we felt a change in leadership was necessary for the program at this time.

"Art is the preeminent throws coach in the nation. We extended an offer to him to remain on the staff to coach our throwers, but he declined."

Venegas joined the UCLA staff for the 1982 season and served as an assistant coach for 16 years before to becoming head coach prior to the 2000 season. For most of his tenure in Westwood, he coached both the men and women throwers, producing numerous Pac-10 and NCAA champions, as well as Olympians.

Stay tuned...

A belated happy birthday!

A belated happy birthday to our friends and media partner Runnerspace.com for the one year anniversary of its uniquely entertaining "RunnerSpace Live" show!

Kudos to Runnerspace.com founder Ross Krempley, Kevin Ullman, Ian Terpin, Matt Barnhart, and all the guys and gals behind Runnerspace!

Thursday, July 2, 2009

Defending NCAA champions announce 2009 cross country schedule...

SEATTLE - The defending NCAA Champion Husky women's cross country team (left/photo by Paul Merca) now knows the path leading to a repeat, as the 2009 meet schedule has been finalized. The UW men, Top-20 finishers in two of the past three years, will also be striving for another NCAA berth this fall.

The series of races mirrors the 2008 agenda with just one exception. The men and women will follow the same schedule, opening up with the only home meet of the year, the Sundodger Invitational at West Seattle's Lincoln Park on Saturday, September 19.

The second meet is the only change from a year ago, as the teams will visit South Bend, Indiana for the Notre Dame Invitational on Friday, October 2. That meet will be the day before the Husky football team plays its road game at Notre Dame as well.

Washington will then be back in Indiana two weeks later for the Pre-National Meet held on the same course as the NCAA Championships in Terre Haute. That meet is set for October 17.

The Pac-10 Championships, which the women swept in unprecedented fashion last fall, will be hosted by USC this year on October 31. The NCAA West Regional meet will be hosted by Oregon at the Springfield Country Club on November 14, followed by the 2009 NCAA Cross Country Championships on November 23 back in Terre Haute at the LaVerne Gibson Championship Course.

Washington will also having runners competing in two additional local meets: the Emerald City Open on October 3 at Woodland Park, and the Northwest College Invite on October 17 at Lincoln Park.

The Huskies will begin training in the last week of August. Preseason rankings will be released September 16.

NOTE: The University of Washington contributed to this report.

Ex-WSU triple jumper Francis Dodoo now head of Ghana's Olympic Committee...

Francis Dodoo, a former standout in the triple jump at Washington State University, a gold medalist at the 1987 All African Games and a four time Olympian has assumed the leadership of the Ghana Olympic Committee (GOC) for a four year period, after elections held at the Quadrennial Congress of the Committee on Tuesday.

Prof. Dodoo a distinguished Sociologist and Chairman of the Ghana Athletics Association (GAA), won the position unopposed and replaces Benson Tongo Baba, whose leadership ended on a sour note, after 12 years of reign.

The full story can be read here...

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