On the road again and will finish my Lassen and Mt Shasta story next week along with a few other adventures.
Here in Eugene Oregon track capital of America for the World Junior Championships at Hayward Field.
Flew in yesterday to Portland and drove to Eugene. Stopped in Salem to visit the capital building. Beautiful building made out of Granite and marble. It was built in 1938 after a fire destroyed the old one. Fountains and flowers were abundant on the capital grounds.
From there made it to Eugene and the meet was just starting. There was prelims and heats in various events along with the decathlon and heptathlon going on. The only final was the men’s 10,000. Just before the 10,000 they had the opening ceremony where all the nations flags of competing nations were carried around the track. Then the national Anthem was sang by vocalist Lauren Wayte, as the UO orchestra played that was assembled on the infield. The orchestra also played during the running of the 10,000. Art McCafferty had sent me an article from the New York Times about the orchestra playing during the opening ceremony. They played Fanfare for the Common Man by Aaron Copland. It was different to say the least. The results of the 10,000 were predictably the same as the Africans finished 1-2-3.
Joshua Cheptegei from Uganda was the winner, Elvis Cheboi from Kenya placed second. Nicholas Kosimbei from Kenya placed third. What a great day of track and field.
Went for a two hour walk on the trails around Eugene. Just phenomenal set of trails all around the city. Got to the track to watch the women’s 10,000 meter walk. It turned out to be an exciting race that produced a new World Junior record. With 37 walkers on the track for 25 laps it was crowded.
Anezka Drahotova from the Chech Republic led from the start with Oxana Golyatkina from Russia right behind her for 4k then she was DQ. Drahotova was all alone after that and went on to a new World Junior record time of 42:47. Second and third were up for grabs as a pack of six from 4k on started to dwindle. Then with 1.5k left Olga Shargina from Russia moved ahead and finished second. Then Na Wang from China placed third and teammate Yuanyuan Ni placed fourth. As Olga Shargina was going around the track for a victory lap with a Russian flag. She was informed that she had been DQ on her last lap. She was devastated. The two Chinese women were informed that they had won the Silver and bronze as they were going around the track with the Chinese flag. They were totally ecstatic. What a race with all the drama!
Anezka Drahotova gives all of us media people a great interview about her training and future race plans. She is also a very good cyclist who competes at that and is a steeple chase runner to. Her first 20k walk will be in Zurich next month at the European Championships.
As she plans to stick with race walking and does other sports just for training. We will be seeing lots more exciting things from this young lady.
Lots more events are going on today in the rain as these championships go on through . The Eugene Marathon is being run also to coincide with these championships.
That’s all from Track Town USA.