Saturday, June 9, 2012

Lagat gets the W in adidas Grand Prix 1500 in Gotham City...

NEW YORK--In one of his final tune up races for the US Olympic Team Trials--Track & Field, Washington State alum Bernard Lagat (left/photo by Paul Merca) took the victory in the men's 1500 meter run at the adidas Grand Prix at Icahn Stadium.

Competing in the second and final American stop on the Samsung Diamond League tour, Lagat, the reigning IAAF world indoor champ at 3000 meters, moved to the front with 80 meters to go and held on for the win in the men’s 1,500m in a time of 3:34.63. It was an improvement for Lagat, who finished 14th in the Bowerman Mile one week ago at the Nike Prefontaine Classic.

Afterwards, Lagat said, "Coming into the last lap I felt good. These last two races (the adidas and the Nike Prefontaine races) have told me I'm ready. Now I am going to concentrate on one race. When I race (June) 28th I will be ready. This told me I was strong and my speed is back. I'm confident. I want it so bad. I don't want to come into the Olympics being third at the Trials. I want to come in after a win. It was able to come together for me over the last 80 meters."

In the women's javelin, Vancouver native Kara Patterson finished third with a best of 197-11 (60.33m), as South Africa's Sunette Viljoen won with a throw of 227-6 (69.35m).

“It was definitely better than I threw in Rome. I’m definitely happy with the placing. I’m happy to be in the top three at a U.S. meet and I can’t take that lightly. I would rather be more consistent and I need to be in better positions. I’m in way better shape physically this year. My training has been really heavy lately," said Patterson, who narrowly missed her season best of 198-0 set in Tuscon last month (60.36m) by three centimeters.

Other highlights from the adidas Grand Prix involving Washington affiliated athletes:

--In the men's discus, Marysville native Jarred Rome finished ninth at 197-7 (60.22m), while WSU grad Ian Waltz was 11th at 192-0 (58.52m);

--WSU alum Blessing Ufodiama was eighth in the triple jump at 42-7 (12.98m);

--in the adidas girl's Dream Mile, Glacier Peak High School's Amy-Eloise Neal was seventh in a season best 4:43.82, while 2010 adidas Dream Mile champ Maddie Meyers of Northwest School was 13th at 4:55.69.

Complete results from the adidas Grand Prix are available here.

On Sunday, a host of Washington affiliated athletes will compete north of the border in the annual Harry Jerome Track Classic at Swangard Stadium in Burnaby, just outside of Vancouver.

Rainier Beach HS grad Ginnie Crawford goes against Perdita Felicien and Angela Whyte in the 100 hurdles, with Washington alum Falesha Ankton and UW volunteer coach Christie Gordon also in the field.

In the women's pole vault, Washington alum Carly Dockendorf looks to get closer to the Olympic A standard as the Canadian Olympic Trials approaches later this month.

Olympia native Brittany Hinchcliffe will compete in the hammer throw.

Washington State grad Anson Henry, a 2008 Olympian for Canada, will compete in the 100. Gig Harbor's Mark Wieczorek runs the 800.

In the 1500, Auburn-Riverside alum Jordan McNamara is entered in the fast section, while WSU's Todd Wakefield is entered in the B section.

Washington alum Norris Frederick is entered in the long jump, while former Husky Kyle Nielsen is entered in the javelin.

The start list for the Harry Jerome Track Classic is available here.

Media partner Flotrack will offer live streaming coverage of the meet starting at 1pm pacific time.

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