Friday, August 15, 2008

Flanagan Earns Bronze & American Record in 10,000-meters

Olympics Day 7 - Athletics

-Beijing, China-Day 1 Analysis

Competition on the track opened up with a couple surprises.

It was a historical night in Beijing and a moment that signals progress tof American distance running on the international scene.

American Shalane Flanagan’s third place finish in the women’s 10,000-meters on Friday, marks only the second time in U.S. history that the country has medaled in this event. Her time of 30:22.22 established a new American record.

The winner, Ethopia’s Tirunesha Dibaba won gold, setting an Olympic record in 29:54.66, and Elvan Abeylegesse of Turkey captured the silver.

The unpredictable nature of the Olympic Games was on display Friday in Beijing. Proving that nothing is guaranteed and anything is possible at the Olympic Games.

The Americans were heavily favored coming into Beijing and many thought that Reese Hoffa, Christian Cantwell, and Adam Nelson would pull off a 1-2-3 sweep of the event.

With that, Tomasz Majewski of Polland won an upset victory by throwing a career best 70 feet, 61/2 inches.

Christian Cantwell (61 feet, 2 ½ inches) was the lone U.S. athlete to medal in the event, walking away with a silver medal.

The favorite Reese Hoffa, the reigning World champion finished in a distant seventh place at 67 feet, 4 ¼ inches. Adam Nelson, did not register a mark in the final after three fouls.

By Jay Hicks.

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