Thursday, September 25, 2014

Cougs & Falcons at Stanford; Vikes at Saint Martin's Invite, & Eugene goes for '19 world champs...

Fresh off a surprising victory over arch-rival Washington at the Sundodger Invitational last week, Washington State, led by Drew Jordan (#850, above/photo by Paul Merca) heads to Stanford for Saturday's Stanford Invitational at the Stanford Golf Course, the same course that will host the NCAA West Regional championship meet in November.

The Cougars, along with Division II Seattle Pacific will be two of the 44 collegiate and university teams entered in the meet, which is expected to attract nearly 3300 runners in 14 different races, from high school divisions on up.

The collegiate men will run 8k at 9:50 am, followed by the women at 10:30 am.  While all the collegians will run together, it will be scored as two different meets--one for Division I schools, and one for all non-Division I schools.

The Division I field includes host Stanford, which will not race a full squad (they are splitting their teams between this meet and next weekend's Washington Invitational at Jefferson Park Golf Course on Beacon Hill), along with Cal, Cal Poly, and the Cougs.

On the women's side, Loyola Marymount, San Francisco, and Cal are among the top teams entered.

Seattle Pacific will face off against perennial D2 powerhouse Chico State, and GNAC rival Simon Fraser, which beat the Falcon women's squad at last week's Sundodger Invite.

Saturday, the nationally ranked Western Washington Vikings head south to Lacey to compete in the Saint Martin's Invitational on the school campus, with the women's 5k starting at 10 am, and the men's 8k at 10:45 am.

Speaking of the Vikings, senior Katelyn Steen was named GNAC athlete of the week for her performance in the invitational section of the Sundodger meet, where she finished eighth.

Steen was an All-American in cross country last season, and also earned All-America honors in the steeplechase last spring.

As expected, TrackTown USA and USA Track & Field formally submitted a bid to the IAAF to host the 2019 World Track & Field Championships in Eugene, Oregon at Hayward Field on the campus of the University of Oregon.

The IAAF World Championships – a biennial nine-day competition featuring the world’s finest track and field athletes – will be the largest sporting event in the world in 2019, with nearly 2,000 participants representing more than 200 countries. The IAAF’s crown jewel has never been held in the U.S., dating back to the inaugural meet contested in Helsinki, Finland in 1983. The 2015 IAAF World Championships will be held in Beijing, and the 2017 edition is set for London.

TrackTown USA served as local organizing committee (LOC) for the 2014 IAAF World Junior Championships at Historic Hayward Field last summer, the first time ever on U.S. soil, and will be the LOC for the 2016 IAAF World Indoor Championships in Portland, Oregon.

“As one of the most successful federations on the track, USATF considers it a duty and an honor to be active in hosting the IAAF, its competitions, and fellow federations,” USATF CEO Max Siegel said. “We have worked actively with the IAAF and TrackTown USA for nearly two years to ensure we are able to put forth a bid that will elevate the profile of track & field internationally as well as in the United States. We look forward to continuing our collaboration with TrackTown USA to present this bid.”

Also bidding for the 2019 World Championships are Barcelona, Spain, and Doha, Qatar.  The IAAF Evaluation Commission will make site visits to each city in late October to verify their bid proposals. The final decision on the host city will be made by the IAAF Council in Monaco on November 18, after presentations from each candidate city.

“After the exceptional success of the IAAF World Junior Championships last summer, we believe we are better positioned than ever to make a run for the World Championship,” said TrackTown USA President Vin Lananna. “The state of Oregon’s unrivaled fan base creates a special atmosphere when they fill the grandstands for the great competitions hosted on the beautiful University of Oregon campus. The rich tradition and history of TrackTown USA and Hayward Field make for an ideal and authentic global platform to stage this fantastic event.”

NOTE:  USA Track & Field, along with the sports information offices of Washington State, Stanford, Saint Martin's and Western Washington University contributed to this report.

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