Allyson Felix has started off the season with a bang, as has David Oliver, the young USA indoor hurdle champion! Read on and see how our Bob Ramsak, the global track writer, made sense of such a tremendous track meet!
TRACK PROFILE Report #751
FELIX, OLIVER IMPRESS IN DOHA
By Bob Ramsak
(c) 2008 TRACK PROFILE Report, all rights reserved
Allyson Felix underscored her Olympic triple gold medal ambitions with an impressive 2008 debut at the Qatar Super Grand Prix in Doha tonight.
The womenâ€™s 200m wasnâ€™t on the program at the first Super Grand meet of the season, leaving the two-time world 200m champion to instead contest the 100 and 400, and she won both in convincing fashion.
The 22-year-old won the 100m in a dazzling 10.93, the fastest in the world this year, and a massive improvement from her previous best of 11.01 from last year. She left Jamaican Sherone Simpson a well-beaten second (11.09).
An hour and 20 minutes later she returned to dominate the 400, clocking 49.83, equaling the fastest performance of the season. Her 49.70 career best from last August is clearly under threat. Jamaican Shedricka Williams was a distant second in 50.50.
Felix will contest the 100 and 200 at the US Olympic Trials in Eugene next month, and is a solid contender for spots on both the 4×100 and 4×400 relay squads.
But Felix wasnâ€™t the only sprinter taking full advantage of the hot conditions in Doha. With his scorching 12.95 victory, American hurdler David Oliver joined the exclusive sub-13 club in the 110m hurdles.
â€œThe race in Doha was awesome!â€ Oliver told his manager, Marisa Reich. â€œI didn’t get a good start either, if I would have gotten away better, I could have broke the world record!â€
It was the second career best of the spring for the 26-year-old, this one coming three weeks after his 13.08 clocking in Greensboro, North Carolina. Oliver was pushed by a two meter per second wind, the maximum allowed for record purposes, but for hurdlers, strong tailwinds are regarded as more of a hindrance than assistance.
Seven other world leading performances emerged.
Reese Hoffa, the reigning world champion, won the shot put with a 21.48m (70-5 Â¾ ) heave. Kenyan David Rudish lowered his own world-pacing performance in the 800m with his 1:44.36 victory, beating Ugandan Abraham Chepkirwok (1:44.66). In her 2008 outdoor debut, Blanka Vlasic of Croatia, the world indoor and outdoor high jump champion, won with a 2.03 leap before bowing out at 2.05.
In a hotly contested race, Abdelati Iguider of Morocco won the 1500m in 3:33.27, barely edging compatriot Mohamed Moustaoui (3:33.31) and Antar Zerguelaine of Algeria (3:33.32). Augustine Choge won the 3000m in 7:32.01 ahead of fellow-Kenyan Edwin Soi (7:32.13), Liliana Popescu of Romania won the womenâ€™s 1500m in 4:05.52, and Richard Mateelong ran away with the victory in the 3000m steeplechase in 8:07.64.
Elsewhere, Jamaican Brigitte Foster-Hylton won the womenâ€™s 100m hurdles with a meet record 12.56, beating world indoor champion Lolo Jones of the U.S., who clocked 12.65. Norwayâ€™s Jaysuma Saidy Ndure edged Darrell Brown of Trinidad in the 100m, 10.01 to 10.02; Lashawn Merritt cruised to an easy victory in the 200m (20.08); Olympic champion Andreas Thorkildsen of Norway won the javelin throw (87.59m/287-4); and Russian Tatyana Kotova won the long jump with a 6.83m [22-5] leap.
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