adidas glide boost Legat shatters U
Bernard Lagat of Kenya set a new American record in the mile to highlight the Golden Spikes track meet Saturday at the new Randal Tyson Track Center.
A crowd of more than 4,000 and an ESPN audience watched the meet that featured professional athletes and collegiate competitors.
But Olympic hopefuls like Lagat, who turned in a very fast 3:56.48 in the men’s mile, dominated the meet.
“I did not know it was going to be that fast,” said Lagat of his record pace. “I run bad when the pace is slow and end up losing. I came here knowing I was going to take it. I was glad there was someone that would pace it fast.”
Once Lagat ran out front, he seemed to get faster.
“It was like 1:59 for the first 800 and I expected it to be 1:56,” said Lagat, who failed to beat his best time of 1:55. “It was three seconds slower, but it was good I got out. I felt good and felt like I was still going.”
The only problem Lagat had was tight muscles.
“I had more than a 12 hour flight and my muscles felt so tight,” Lagat said. “I arrived at 9 o’clock. I warmed up for an hour and that helped me a lot.”
Jeff Hartwig, a resident of Jonesboro, Ark., equaled his world record of 19 2 1/4 in the pole vault. He raised the bar one quarter inch in an attempt to set a new mark, but failed to clear it in three tries.
Jon Drummond of Los Angeles turned on the steam to post a win over Tim Harden in the 60 meter dash. Drummond finished in 6.53 seconds.
“We had a great field and Tim Harden is always great competition, and Mike Harsh (3rd place) is always going to surprise you,” said Drummond, who missed the world and American record by eight hundredths of a second (6.45). “So I focused a little bit more on myself and what I needed to execute.
“I did not have the great or fast race that I anticipated. However, I am injury free and live to race another day.
“If I am not winning races, I am not happy. I think the more I start winning, the happier I will be.”
Drummond, like many of the competitors, was impressed with the Randal Tyson facility.
“I think this is an awesome track,” he said. “I hope this will excite more track fans to come out. Coming here was a great thing for us.”
Three time 1998 NCAA Indoor champion Hazel Clark won in her first attempt at the mile with a time of 4:40.92.
“I felt really good,
” said Clark, who burst out front and pulled away on the final lap. “I just slowed the pace down. At the 800 mark, I knew I was fast. I just stayed back, then I took off. I ran 4:40 and that is what I expected to run.”
“This is my first mile and I think it went well,” Clark later added. “I am a good 800 meter runner and it is just about the same. A lot of people tell me I should be a miler and maybe they are right.”
Larissa Kleinmann of Arkansas came close to posting a win in the women’s 3,000 meters, but Courtney Babcock of Mountain West sprinted around on the final lap to beat Kleinmann at 9:08.05. It was her fourth straight win in the event.
“I’ve been running 7.93, 7.94, but I’ve been trying real hard to get it under 7.9,” said Morrison. “I didn’t do it today, but I still have two weeks to train. If I go hard, I think I can break 7.9.”
In the men’s 3,000 meter run, Clyde Colenso of South Africa turned in a time of 7:56.25, just short of the American record of 7:55.19.60 meters 1, Jon Drummond (Nike) 6:53. 2, Tim Harden (Nike) 6:59. 3, Mike Marsh (SMTC) 6.66. 4, Kim Collins (TCU) 6.67. 5, Garfield Ellenwood (TCU) 6.69.
200 meters 1, Milton Mallard (Asics) 21.10. 2, Andre Morris (Fila) 21.10. 3, Curtis Perry (Nike) 21.42.