EUGENE, ORE. – Jessica Cosby established the American record in the women’s hammer throw while Christian Taylor and Alysia Montano established both meet and Hayward Field records in the men’s triple jump and women’s national 800m, respectively, to highlight a rainy Friday night at Hayward Field in the Prefontaine Classic. Competition continues Saturday and will be broadcast live on NBC from 3-4:30 p.m. (Eastern Time).
The second stop of the outdoor Visa Championship Series, the Prefontaine Classic is the third spot for the Samsung Diamond League. Friday featured two Diamond League events in the women’s discus and men’s triple jump.
Cosby bettered Erin Gilreath’s American best mark with her throw of 74.19m/243-5 to place fourth in a deep hammer throw field. On the night Cosby recorded three of the top five throws in American history. Gilreath initially set the American record of 73.87m/242-4 in 2005. World record holder Betty Heidler of Germany won the event with a throw of 75.93m/249-1.
In a shortened event in the men’s triple jump, Taylor, the reigning World Outdoor champion, established both records and a new world-leader on his second jump to win the event at 17.62m/57-9.75. Finishing closely behind in second place was World Indoor champion and Taylor’s teammate while at the University of Florida Will Claye. Claye recorded a season best mark of 17.48m/57-4.25.
Taylor bettered Aarik Wilson’s Hayward Field record (17.43m/57-2.25), which he set in 2008, and Walter Davis’s meet record (17.40m/57-1), which he established in 2006.
Montano cruised to the win and set the meet and Hayward Field records in a time of 1:57.37. She finished nearly two seconds ahead of Geena Gall, who ran a personal best of 1:59.28 to place second.
In the women’s discus, American record holder Stephanie Brown-Trafton failed to record a mark while Gia Lewis-Smallwood was the top American finisher with a throw of 61.77m/202-08 to place fifth.
Alice Schmidt established the Olympic “A” standard to win the women’s national 1,500m in a personal best time of 4:05.64. She finished just ahead of 2011 World Outdoor Championships gold medalist Jenny Simpson, who placed second in 4:06.10.
Russell Brown placed second in a time of 3:54.48 and Jeff See fourth in 3:55.51 to lead the Americans in the men’s international mile. Kenya’s James Kiplagat Magut won the race in 3:54.16.
The Prefontaine Classic also played host to the Olympic Trials for the Kenyan men’s 10,000m and Wilson Kiprop won the race in a world-leading time of 27:01.98.
Complete results from Friday’s competition can be found on the Diamond League’s website.
Jessica Cosby – women’s hammer throw
“You always plan to attack the first throw. I just wanted to make sure I came out and executed. It wasn’t easy with three former world record holders. It’s all about doing the best you can do. (Friday) I did the best that I could do. I feel good. My training is going in the right direction and it is all starting to make sense.”
Christian Taylor – men’s triple jump
“I felt this one. I knew I was ready to go. We were looking at the film and have been doing a lot of speed work lately. This is a great confidence booster for me. It felt great and this is right where I want to be. I was wishing some people hadn’t pulled out and we could have kept jumping. But if it’s not a world record then you can’t be satisfied. This is my favorite place to be competing. It’s great to get the message across that USA is good on the track, but is also good in the jumps.”
Alysia Montano – women’s national 800m
“I feel great. It was a really nice run. I am so excited of things to come. I feel great about where things are at right now. I actually appreciated the fact that it did rain. It’s just like London weather. I have so much motivation right now.”
Alice Schmidt – women’s national 1,500m
“It was a great race for me. It was a big, fat PR (personal record) and I will take that. It’s good for me to race a lot. I just finally dipped under 4:06 to pick up the (Olympic) ‘A’ standard and I am very excited about that. The Trials will be a lot of racing for me and I am excited about that. I love it here. I have won here a few times before and it’s such a great town.”
Russell Brown – men’s international mile
“It was a solid day. I spotted him a little too much. Maybe I should have looked at the clock more. Second place against a huge field like this is a great feeling. It does set me up for the Trials really well. But I know there are guys here that aren’t as satisfied with their race as I was. We have done things different this year and I don’t think I will have the same dip I had last year.”
Amber Campbell – women’s hammer throw
“I expected to do much better so that is a little disappointing. The fans really participated in the event. They showed up and gave us a lot of support. I am very excited about the Trials and I’m really looking forward to that.”