The big winner of the day was Brad Walker (19 feet, 9 ¾ inches) setting a new American Record in Eugene, Oregon. He has to be more than pleased with that unconscious performance on the same track where the Olympic Trials will be hosted in just three weeks.
The standout moment of the day was Mozambique’s Maria Mutola (1:55.57) winning a stacked 800-meters for the 16th and final time. She has the heart of a champion. High school sensation Chanelle Price (2:01.61) held her own with a 6th place finish and the second fastest high school time ever.
Wallace Spearmon broke Michael Johnson’s 200-meter meet record running 20.13. Commentator Ato Bolden said today what I’ve been thinking about Spearmon for quite some time. The former University of Arkansas All-American rarely seems to be at 100%. It’s scary to think what he is capable of running in the deuce when he explodes through the first 100 meters of the race.
The biggest recipient of Jeremy Wariner leaving Coach Hart is Sanya Richards. The former University of Texas standout didn’t run a particularly outstanding time (50.1), but she won. That cannot be underestimated at this point in the season.
No one is talking about Torri Edwards in the 100, but she is a sleeper who can wreck havoc at the Olympic Trials. The fourth place finish by Allyson Felix in the 100 is concerning. Felix was saved by the first false start charged to Torri Edwards when she was left sitting in the blocks after the gun. Given a second chance, Allyson never made up the two meter lead that she gave up to the eventual winner Torri Edwards (10.94) at the start. Felix has not run a crisp 100 since the 10.93 she ran in Doha on May 9.
The 110-meter hurdles is shaping up to be one of the premier events in Beijing. Forget the fact that Liu Xiang of China has been the event’s leading man for the last four years. After Xiang was disqualified for a second false start, then Anwar Moore easily jogged 13.09.
LaShawn Merritt is not letting the victory over Jeremy Wariner last week in Berlin go to his head. Merritt ran strongly (44.65) in his victory, but tied up the last 10 meters. The biggest surprise of the 400 was Canadian Tyler Christopher’s disappointing (45.52) fourth place finish.
By Jay Hicks.