Another 2km Steeple World Best, Bailey & Blake 10.00, by Alfons Juck, Note by Larry Eder

Well, sports fans, I am writing to you from the Terminal B of the lovely O'Hare International in Chicago, Illinois. I have finished my double espresso, and stopped gnawing on my plate of celery stalks. I have the ITunes cranked up, (Counting Crows, Rain King, Talk Talk, LIfe is what you make it...), and hope to board the last flight to Portland, with the last seat, to arrive somewhere south of midnight.

Looking forward to heading to PDX, and seeing two days of track & field, plus a few  friends. Special thanks to Tony Bignell and I hope he is enjoying the World Cup in South Africa.

When I fly to Portland, I always remember the late Ken Kesey's The summer of our discontent, a homage to the US 1980 Olympic Trials, where the athletes did not get to compete in the  Moscow Olympics. Something about Russians in Afghanistan...anyway, the part that stays with me is Kesey's friend, Milo, who would sit down, eating a brown rice and veggie burritto and slowly cry about how beautiful the trials had been...Mrs. Kesey was kind enough to allow me to reprint that story in Athletes of Kesey's best, originally written for Running magazine, the best magazine ever done on our sport. ( I still have all of the issues).

Last weekend, my son, Adam and his buddy, Deering, saw the Bone Thugs in concert. They were pretty excited about the show, and had a blast. After listening to them talk about the show, I got to thinking that, perhaps, that is how, we should feel about a well managed
track & field meet! More on that later, time to run to the gate!



REIMS (FRA, Jun 30): Cuban world record holder Dayron Robles clocked his second fastest time of the year 13.09 (-0.4) at 4th Alma Athle Tour meeting in France. But the star of the evening was Mahiedine Mekhissi-Benabaad who clocked in the 2000 m steeple impressive 5:10.68 and improved the five days old all time world best 5:13.47 of his rival Bob Tahri by nearly 3 seconds. It looks like he has the shape to run under 8 minutes as first European. Second Ali Thamer of Qatar got 5:20.13 and third Ruben Ramolefi of South Africa 5:26.46. In fast 100 m a tie for first as Daniel Bailey and Yohan Blake clocked impressive 10.00 (-0.1), for both fastest of the year. Third US Mike Rodgers achieved 10.19. Cuban Alexis Copello got 17.24 (0.0) in triple jump over world champion Philips Idowu (17.14, 0.0). Dema Daba Bikila of Ethiopia won the 1500 m in 3:36.15 beating Kenyan Remy Limo Ndiwa 3:36.66. European champion Yohan Diniz won the 5000 m walk in 18:49.66 over Australia´s Luke Adams (19:03.48). Russian Mikhail Tsvetkov was the best in high jump (227). In women events triple world champion Yargelis Savigne improved her long jump best to excellent 691 (-0.1). Antoher Cuban win for Yipsi Moreno in hammer (73.66). German Berlin finalist Kristina Gadschiew improved her outdoor best in pole vault to 460 as the winner. Nigerian Ajoke Odomosu won the 400 m hurdles in 55.30 beating European champion Yevgeniya Isakova (55.32) and US Jennifer Grossarth (55.51, PB). Jamaican Deloreen Ennis-London was the best in the 100 m hurdles 12.75 (+0.7) over her team-mate Vonette Dixon (12.87). Gabon´s Ruddy Zanga-Milama won the 100 m in 11.45 (-0.2) beating Aileen Bailey of Jamaica (11.47) and French legend Christine Arron (11.51).

GROSSETO (ITA, Jun 30): The first day of 100th Italian Championships celebrated return of European Champion Andrew Howe. With 816 (+1.3) in last round he got the national title and also had 805 in fourth round. Second Emanuelle Formichetti improved from 784 to 810 (+1.6) and was second. Another top mark was the 201 clearance in third attempt (and season best) by Antonietta Di Martino in high jump. She also had one try at 204. Second Rafaella Lamera cleared 190. Fast 100 m for Simone Collio in 10.16 (-0.2) over Emanuele Di Gregorio (10.22) and Fabio Cerutti (10.24). Walking olympic winner Alex Schwazer won the track 10 000 m in 40.04.99 clearly beating Giorgio Rubino (40.43.12). Manuela Levorato clocked 11.49 (-0.4 and 11.48 in heats) to get the 100 m title. Elisa Cusma confirmed good shape with 4:09.93 1500 m win. Solid first places also for Simona La Mantia in triple jump (14.02, +0.2) and Silvia Salis in hammer (70.23). 

ESPOO (FIN, Jun 30): Second of five meetings Vattenfall Circuit in Finland registered great long jumping. Danish record holder Morten Jensen leaped to 821 (+0.7) over home Tommi Evila with Barcelona standard 807 (+1.2), Korean Kim Duk-Hyeon also 807 (+1.0) and South African Luvo Manyonya 803 (+0.4). Lavern Spencer of St. Lucia went over 195 to win the high jump and Trinidad´s world medalist Josanne Lucas impressed with 55.41 at 400 m hurdles over Latvian Ieva Zunda 56.11. Jamaican Commonwealth Games gold medalist Sheri-Ann Brooks won the 100 m in 11.32 (-0.6). In men´s 200 m also Jamaican win for Steve Mullings in 20.96 (-1.2). Kenyan Jackson Kivuna won slow 800 m in 1:48.63 and Sweden´s Mustafa Mohamed got 8:31.48 in steeple. Osku Torro cleared 225 to win the high jump and Poland´s legend Szymon Ziolkowski was the best in hammer (75.42). Antti Ruuskanen was the best in javelin (81.16).


TEL AVIV (ISR, Jun 30): Jillian Schwartz cleared during 1st day of  74th Israeli National Championships 444 a meet record. Russian guest Tatyana Polnova was second (434).  US Donald Sanford won the men´s 400 m in 46.44. Yochai Halevi leaped to 16.57 (+0.6) in triple jump.

IZMIR (TUR, Jun 29): During first day of Turkish Championships the European indoor champion Alemitu Bekele clocked european leading 4:02.2 at 1500 m. Second Asli Cakir also impressive personal best 4:04.8. Meryem Erdogan won the 5000 m in 15:42.1. Esref Apak achieved in hammer 72.75 and Kemal Koyuncu 3:38.6 at 1500 m.

PATRAS (GRE, Jun 30): The Meeting Patras 2010 which replaced Thessaloniki and was organised by Greek Federation saw Jamaican Ainsley Waugh winning both sprints in 10.33 and 20.56. Ireland´s former world indoor champion Derval O´Rourke was the best at 100 m hurdles in 13.13 over US Nichole Denby 13.26. Bulgarian Venelina Veneva cleared 193 in high jump and German Fabian Schulze 555 in pole vault. Sotiris Iakovakis achieved 50.70 at 400 m hurdles and Igor Janik of Poland was the best in javelin (77.55). Konstadina Kefala improved in steeple to 9:54.01 and achieved Barcelona standard.

NAMUR (BEL, Jun 30): US Otis McDaniel was again fast in Belgium. At 15th Atletissima meet (EAP Circuit) his winning time was 10.29 (+0.8) at 100 m. Ireland´s Ailis McSweeney was the best in women´s 100 m (11.62, 0.0). Belgian world indoor relay medalist Antoine Gillet won the 400 m in 46.36.


LONDON (GBR): Usain Bolt´s agent Ricky Simms pointed out that the article in The Nation about the attendance of the fastest man on earth at African Championships is nottrue.

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