Just 32 days before the U.S. Olympic Trials in Eugene, Oregon the 800 is wide open. Matt Scherer of the Oregon Track Club Elite has officially thrown his hat in the ring for the Olympic team by running 1:46.61, a major personal best time. Scherer is roughly the third-ranked American at 800-meters.
The PR marks a progression in his performance that puts him in the mix at this stage of the season. That time met the “B” standard of 1:47.00 for the Beijing Olympics and just barely missed the “A” standard of 1:46.00. The Illinois native will most definitely need to run 1:45ish to make the Olympic squad, but this race is encouragement that he is headed in the right direction.
Scherer told PreraceJitters.com that “I was pretty comfortable the entire race, there is a lot more there. My goal was to stay relaxed down the homestretch. This race set me up for my next couple of race and then the Olympic Trials.”
What is unique about Scherer is that he moved up to the 800 last season from the 400 after graduating the University of Oregon. His personal best time stood at 45.19 in the 400, but he knew that time was not nearly fast enough to compete on the very crowded U.S. 400-meter scene. Fans can see Matt next run on Sunday, June 8 at the Prefontaine Classic.
By Jay Hicks.