Thursday, July 1, 2010

Hayward Field set to host Nike Prefontaine Classic & Nike Track Nationals Friday & Saturday...

Saturday's Nike Prefontaine Classic promises to be one of the most explosive invitational meets on American soil in a long time, featuring no less than 41 Olympic or World Championship medalists competing in a three-hour window starting at noon at Historic Hayward Field.


American 100m record holder and 2009 World Outdoor Championships silver medalist Tyson Gay has been battling a sore hamstring of late but that won't stop him from competing Saturday in the men's 200m at Hayward Field.

The Visa Women's 100 meters also features a stellar field headlined by two-time World Outdoor Championships bronze medalist Carmelita Jeter, who owns the third-fastest time in the world this year of 10.94.

Jamaican stars in this event include Olympic and World champion Shelly-Ann Fraser, Olympic 200m gold medalist Veronica Campbell-Brown and Beijing Olympic silver medalist Sherone Simpson.


Washington State University hall of famer, and reigning world 3000m indoor champ Bernard Lagat faces Olympic champ and defending Bowerman Mile champ Asbel Kiprop of Kenya, reigning world 1500m champ Yusuf Kamel of Bahrain, along with 2008 US Olympic teammates Lopez Lomong and Leo Manzano.

To use the old Seattle Seahawks marketing theme, "it's go time" for American record holder Chris Solinsky, as the national record holder at 10000 looks to take a shot at Bernard Lagat's 5000 record of 12:54.12, set last month in Oslo.

Solinsky will face Oregon TC/Portland training partner Matt Tegenkamp, 2009 World Outdoor Champs 10,000m fourth-place finisher Imane Merga of Ethiopia and the dangerous Eliud Kipchoge of Kenya, who owns the fastest time in the world this season of 12:51.21.

Sudan's Abubaker Kaki announced that he'd like to take a shot at the world record in the 1000 meters, and meet director Tom Jordan's going to give him a shot. Kaki has asked for a very fast pace (1:45 at 800 meters), and the best time ever recorded on American soil—2:15.97—is in serious jeopardy. The current world record is 2:11.96 by Noah Ngeny of Kenya in 1999.

In the Diamond League 800 meters, it’s a clash of gold medalists, with Beijing Olympic gold medalist Pamela Jelimo racing against Osaka World Championships gold medalist Janeth Jepkosgei and Berlin World Championships 1500 gold medalist Maryam Jamal.


Vancouver's Kara Patterson, fresh off her American record in the javelin, will have the benefit of some home cooking, as she'll have a contingent of friends and family make the drive down I-5 to see her face off against world record holder Barbora Spotakova of the Czech Republic and Russia's Mariya Abakumova, who won the bronze medal at the 2009 World Championships.

In the discus, Marysville-Pilchuck grad Jarred Rome and WSU grad Ian Waltz face 2008 Olympic gold medalist and 2007 World champion Gerd Kanter of Estonia. The field that includes two-time Olympic gold medalist Virgilijus Alekna from Lithuania, 2004 Olympic silver medalist Zoltan Kovago of Hungary and American Casey Malone, who won the national title last week.

The men's shot will be an American affair, with reigning world champ Christian Cantwell facing 2007 World Outdoor champion, 2006 World Indoor gold medalist and 2010 USA Outdoor Champs runner-up Reese Hoffa, two-time Olympic Games silver medalist and 2005 World Outdoor champion Adam Nelson and 2009 USA Indoor champion Dan Taylor. Also keep an eye on 2008 NCAA Outdoor champion Cory Martin, who owns the second best throw in the world this year (22.10m/72-6.25) and two-time NCAA Outdoor champion Ryan Whiting, who owns the third and fourth best throws globally this season.

2010 USA champion and this year's USATF Women's Indoor Visa Championship Series winner Amber Campbell will face world record holder Anita Wlodarczyk of Poland in the hammer throw. Former world record holder Tatyana Lysenko of Russia is in the field in addition to Betty Heidler of Germany, who was the silver medalist at the 2009 World Championships and is a two-time winner at Pre.


The Diamond League event features Anna Rogowska of Poland , the 29-year-old surprise winner of the Berlin World Championships last summer. Joining her are the co-silver medalists, compatriot Monika Pyrek and American Chelsea Johnson, who had identical marks and therefore shared the runner-up spot. Then add in comebacking Jenn (Stuczynski) Suhr, the 2008 Olympic silver medalist, who recorded the second highest vault in the world last year before injury shortened her season, and Brazilian Fabiana Murer, victor in the recent World Indoor Championships in Doha

The weekend of track and field at Hayward Field kicks off Friday night with the inaugural running of the Nike Track Nationals, which brings 12 high school boys teams and 12 high school girls teams to Hayward Field for a team scoring competition.

Washington will be represented at Nike Track Nationals by Kentwood HS.

Start lists for the Pre Classic, which is part of the Samsung Diamond League, can be accessed here.

You can visit the Pre Classic home page for news here.

The Nike Prefontaine Classic will be televised live on NBC starting at 1:30 pm Saturday.

No comments:

Blog Archive