Saturday, July 14, 2012

Crawford gets third at Aviva London GP; Mackey wins 1500 in Kortrijk...

LONDON, England--With the start of the track & field competition at the Olympics less than three weeks away, many of the world's top track & field athletes gathered at Crystal Palace for day 2 of the Aviva London Grand Prix stop on the Samsung Diamond League tour.

Rainier Beach HS grad Ginnie Crawford (left/photo by Paul Merca) finished third in the finals of the 100 hurdles in a time of 12.74, as US Olympic trials runner-up Kellie Wells took the victory in 12.57 to beat reigning world champion Sally Pearson of Australia by 2/100ths of a second.

In the prelims, held earlier in the meet Crawford was victorious, running 12.62 to advance to the finals.

In the men's mile, which was not a Diamond League event, Washington State alum Bernard Lagat was sixth in a season best time of 3:54.17, as he sharpens for a run at the Olympics in the 5000.

Kenya's Silas Kiplagat won the race in 3:52.44.

Complete results from the Aviva London Grand Prix are available here.

In Kortrijk, Belgium at the Flanders Cup Guldensporenmeeting Meeting, Washington alum Katie Mackey won the fast section of the women's 1500, running 4:11.85, leading a US sweep of the podium positions, as Emily Infeld (4:12.13) and Ashley Miller (4:13.12) went 2-3.

Olympic trials 800 meter finalist Mark Wieczorek from Gig Harbor finished second in the fast section of the men's 800, running 1:47.59, as Kenya's Alex Kibet won in 1:47.32.

Complete results from the Flanders Cup Guldensporenmeeting Meeting are available here.

SYMMONDS AND JONES BUMPED OUT OF AVIVA LONDON GP MEET

US Olympians Nick Symmonds and Lolo Jones were not given invitations to the Aviva London Grand Prix meet by meet director Ian Stewart.

In a post on his Facebook page, Symmonds wrote, "For those of you wondering why I am not racing in tomorrow's London Diamond League 800m: I was told by the meet director, Ian Stewart, that I am "a liability" and that I am not allowed to race in any of his meetings. Apparently, he told the same thing to Lolo Jones, one of the most popular athletes in the world of Athletics. People like Mr. Stewart have very antiquated ideas about how the sport of Track and Field should be governed and are holding our sport back."

While it is within the meet director's discretion over who runs in their meet, it makes one wonder if Stewart (who is married to USATF president Stephanie Hightower) has some sort of grudge against Symmonds and/or Jones, as both athletes have gone against the grain in marketing themselves--Symmonds with the temporary tattoo on his arm with the logo and Twitter handle of Hanson Dodge Creative, and Jones with the Red Bull headband; or, is Stewart protecting his meets' sponsors, Aviva (British financial services company) and Samsung (sponsor of the Diamond League).

Relay Network affiliate tracksuperfan.com has a great summary on the Symmonds/Jones v. Stewart feud, which you can read here.

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