2019 Des Moines Diary, Day 4: Muhammad breaks 16-year-old women's 400m hurdles world record as Team USATF athletes shine on final day of Toyota USATF Outdoor Championships , by USATF Communications



Donovan Brazier takes the 800m over Clayton Murphy, photo by PhotoRun.net

The last day of the championships was electric. Big, exciting events, and Des Moines weather to keep it real. The finals all had their own drama, and surprises are around me. It was the 3 ring circus, the perfect challenge for someone who can not concentrate, such as myself. Watching the field events can be a challenge, but some of the biggest drama was in the field events.

Coburn_EmmaFHL-USAout19.JPgEmma Coburn dominated the steeplechase, photo by PhotoRun.net

Lomong_Lopez5kR1-USAout19.jpgLopez Lomong battles Paul Chelimo to the wire, at about 4,950 meters, photo by PhotoRun.net

The 5000m was exciting down the final, desperate steps, as Lopez Lomong, healthy and full of vigor, drive and need, took the title just feet before the finsih from a gutty Paul Chelimo. In the 1,500m, Craig Engels took the title, just .04 ahead of Matthew Centrowitz. In the women's 5000m, Shelby Houliahan charged to her second title the weekend.

Engels_CraigFH1b-USAout19.jpgCraig Engels achieves his dreams, photo by PhotoRun.net

So many events to ponder, watch for out Top 5 lists on each of USATF's four days of track nirvana, coming soon.

Muhammad breaks 16-year-old women's 400m hurdles world record as Team USATF athletes shine on final day of Toyota USATF Outdoor Championships


DES MOINES -- The 2019 Toyota USATF Outdoor Championships closed with a bevy of national title winners and record breakers, highlighted by a new world record and intense battles for top podium position at Drake University.

Fans can watch on demand coverage on NBC Sports Gold, and find full results here.

Rain had just begun when the women's 400m hurdles lined up for a final that included the reigning Olympic champion, the Rio bronze medalist, the defending champion, the 2015 Worlds bronze medalist, and the world U20 record-holder who led the 2019 world list coming into the meet.

Everyone got out well, but Rio Olympic gold medalist Dalilah Muhammad burst off the first curve in lane four and closed the gap on Shamier Little and Sydney McLaughlin to her outside. She turned on the afterburners at 160 meters and cruised around the final curve, with McLaughlin and Ashley Spencer on her heels. Clearing the final barrier cleanly, it was a run for home for Muhammad against the history books. Sprinting the final 20 meters, Muhammad stopped the clock at a (pending) world record 52.20, taking down a global mark that had stood since 2003 when Russia's Yuliya Pechonkina ran 52.34. McLaughlin was second in a season best 52.88, Spencer third with a personal record 53.11.

Featuring an anime hairstyle and owner of the fastest time in the world this year and the second-fastest American in history, Noah Lyles stamped himself as the Doha favorite in the 200m with a convincing 19.78 win that put him almost a quarter-second in front of 100m champ Christian Coleman, who picked up silver in 20.02. Ameer Webb was third in 20.45.

Running her fastest time since 2015, Dezerea Bryant sped to gold in the women's 200m in 22.47, leading from start to finish as Brittany Brown, the USATF Indoor 300m winner in February, made her first U.S. team with a 22.61 in second. USC's two-time NCAA champ, Angie Annelus, also grabbed a berth on her first American squad with a third-place 22.71.

The year-long battle between 2019 SEC Champion and NCAA Runner-up Daniel Roberts and NCAA Champion Grant Holloway continued in Sunday's final of the men's 110m hurdles. Roberts flew over the barriers in 13.23 and held off Holloway who dove for second in 13.36. Rio '16 fifth-placer Devon Allen came up for bronze in 13.38.

A trio of young two-lap stars controlled the men's 800m from the gun, led by American indoor record-holder Donavan Brazier. Brazier rolled to an eye-opening 50.62 on the final 400 after an opening circuit of 55.00 to capture his second outdoor U.S. title in 1:45.62. Rio bronze medalist Clayton Murphy was strong down the stretch to pick up silver in 1:46.01 ahead of Kansas' NCAA champ Bryce Hoppel, third in 1:46.31.

Cool, calm and collected as always, Ajee' Wilson won her third straight USATF Outdoors title, and fourth overall, with a stadium-record and season-best 1:57.72. Wilson pulled the pack through 400m in a quick 57.85 and stretched her lead a bit on the last lap with a 59.87. Hanna Green continued to improve, lowering her PR to 1:58.19 for silver, and Raevyn Rogers was third in 1:58.84. New Jersey high schooler Athing Mu, the surprise winner of the USATF Indoor 600m earlier this year, ran the eighth-fastest time in prep history to take fifth on 2:01.17.

As is common in championship 1,500m racing, the men's metric mile went out conservatively. Craig Engels was always near the front, leading with two laps remaining before dropping back to second heading into the bell, and his sub-1:45 800 speed carried him to victory in 3:44.93, .04 ahead of reigning Olympic champion Matthew Centrowitz. Josh Thompson outlegged Ben Blankenship for the bronze, crossing the line at 3:45.25.

Sunday morning's 10km race walk champions were Katie Burnett and Nick Christie. Robyn Stevens led the field for about 2600m before Burnett took over, never looking back on her way to the USATF title in a new personal best time of 46:12.45. Second place finisher Miranda Melville crossed the line with a personal best 46:49.90 and Stevens placed third in 47:22.54. Christie, the 2018 20k USATF Champion, led from start to finish crossing the line in 41:56.61, more than a minute ahead of second place Emmanuel Corvera in 43:10.87.

Valarie Allman's first throw landed her the women's discus title for the second year in a row at 64.34/211-1 to send her to Doha along with Kelsey Card (63.33/207-9) and Iowa's NCAA winner Laulauga Tausaga, who was third at 62.08/203-8.

Shelby Houlihan defended her title in the Chocolate Milk Women's 5,000m, hovering near the middle of the pack through 3,000m, when she steadily moved up into contention. Over the final five laps, the Iowa native bided her time before unleashing her trademark kick off the final curve to sprint to gold in 15:15.50. The U.S. leader coming into the meet, Karissa Schweizer held on for silver in 15:17.03, and Elinor Purrier kicked past Rachel Schneider to secure the bronze in 15:17.46.

Another remarkable final lap sent Lopez Lomong atop the award stand for the second time this week, as the 10,000m champ added 5,000m gold to his trophy case. A rapid early pace from the trio of Paul Chelimo, Woody Kincaid and Lomong drifted into a steady but slower rhythm through the middle laps, allowing the rest of the field to catch up. Indoor two-mile gold medalist Drew Hunter and Hassan Mead worked their way through the pack to join the leaders with a mile to go, but it was Lomong who had the legs over the last 400m, covering it in 53.35 to beat Rio silver medalist Chelimo and win in 13:25.53. Chelimo was second in 13:25.80, while Kincaid's PR 13:26.84 put him third in front of Mead.

One of the world's emerging women's shot put stars, Chase Ealey staked claim to her first U.S. outdoor title in the first round, establishing a lead she would never relinquish with an 18.46/60-6.75. Last year's winner, Maggie Ewen, nearly matched that in round two, but Ealey's 19.56/64-2.25 in that stanza gave her an unassailable lead and she finished with four throws past 19 meters. Reigning Olympic champion Michelle Carter had her best throw in two years, earning silver with a season-best 18.69/61-4 to pass Ewen in round three. Carter won her first international medal in the shot 18 years ago at the IAAF World Youth Championships in Hungary.

Reigning world champion Emma Coburn was content to let others do the work through the first four laps of the women's 3,000m steeplechase, running behind American record-holder Courtney Frerichs and USATF Indoor mile winner Colleen Quigley, among others. Coburn took over with three to go and pulled ahead over the final 800m to win her sixth straight and eighth overall U.S. title in 9:25.63. Frerichs was clear for silver in 9:26.61, and Quigley got bronze in 9:30.97. NCAA winner Allie Ostrander was fourth and will make the trip to Doha since Coburn has a bye as defending champ.

Needing to beat Kendell Williams by five seconds in the 800m to win her second straight heptathlon title, Erica Bougard did that and more, clocking 2:12.41 to end up with 6,663 points in the heptathlon, her second-highest score ever. Williams shattered her lifetime best with 6,610 to move to No. 5 on the all-time U.S. list, and behind her four women set personal bests, including bronze medalist Chari Hawkins with 6,230. On a torrid pace through the first day, Williams and Bougard didn't cool off in the long jump, where Williams popped a PR 6.71/22-0.25 and a wind-aided 6.83/22-5 to increase her lead over Bougard to 95. Bougard's PR 45.80/150-3 in the javelin closed the gap a bit, as Williams managed a season-best 44.31/145-4, and then Bougard clinched it with her superb two-lapper in the final event.

Some early hiccups in the moist conditions from Sandi Morris and Jenn Suhr had Katie Nageotte leading the women's pole vault with a clean sheet through 4.80/15-9, but Morris grabbed the gold from a passing Nageotte's hand with a clutch vault at 4.85/15-11. Neither woman could go over at 4.90/16-0.75, and Suhr was third with a 4.70/15-5 best.

Two men cleared the Doha qualifying height of 2.30/7-6.5 in the high jump. Jeron Robinson took top honors on the basis of fewer misses at earlier heights over Alabama's Shelby McEwen. A rain-hampered men's long jump was won by Missouri's Ja'Mari Ward with a season-best 8.12/26-7.75 in less-than-ideal conditions. Triple jump silver medalist Will Claye earned his second Doha spot with the silver, and Houston's Trumaine Jefferson was third and will join Claye at the Worlds.

Media and fans are encouraged to join the conversation using #ToyotaUSATFOutdoors on Twitter,Instagram, Snapchat and Facebook.

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