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Coburn named Athlete of the Week

INDIANAPOLIS - Colorado's Emma Coburn has been named USA Track & Field’s Athlete of the Week after she set the world lead in the 3,000m steeplechase at Payton Jordan Invitational at Stanford University on Sunday.
Emma Coburn
© CU Athletics

The former American Junior record holder took the lead from the start of the race and never relented, putting more than 40 meters between her and the rest of the field. Coburn clocked a 9:40.51 to shave 11 seconds off her PR. She became the 11th fastest on the U.S. all-time list and earned the Olympic ‘A’ standard.

After her race, Coburn told Flotrack, “My goal was to get the [Olympic] standard and break 9:40. So I got one big goal, and I’m getting close to the other one.”

Now in its tenth year, USATF's Athlete of the Week program is designed to recognize outstanding performers at all levels of the sport. USATF names a new honoree each week and features the athlete on the USATF website. Selections are based on top performances and results from the previous week.

Winners: January 5, Bill Tribou; January 12, Tyler Sorensen; January 20, Josh Cox; January 26,Ben Shorey; February 2, Ashton Eaton; February 9, Ashton Eaton; February 16, Bernard Lagat; February 23, Ryan Crouser; March 2, Jillian Camarena-Williams; March 10, Bill Collins; March 16, Miles Batty; March 23, Shalane Flanagan; March 30, John Nunn; April 6, Aries Merritt; April 13, Gunnar Nixon; April 20, Desiree Davila; April 27, Nolan Shaheed; May 4, Emma Coburn

From USATF Statistician Glen McMicken


World-leading performances in six relays, including two magnificent runs by Team USA quartets, highlighted the 12th USA vs the World competition at the Penn Relays. Perhaps the top effort came from USA Red's Lauryn Williams, Allyson Felix, Marshevet Myers and Carmelita Jeter, who teamed up to clock a meet-record 42.28 in the Visa Women’s 4x100m.

Felix played a major part in another USA Red win, rolling to a 50.3 on the second leg of the Women’s Nike 4x400m to help her foursome finish in 3:22.92. Debbie Dunn led off in 51.1, with Natasha Hastings turning in a 50.30 on third leg. Sanya Richards-Ross capped it off with a 51.18 to give the Red team a narrow win over USA Blue, which was second at 3:23.17. Francena McCorory had the fastest split of the race on second leg for the Blue team at 49.8.

2010 World Junior 800m bronze medalist Robby Andrews used a 1:46.00 anchor leg to give Virginia the men's 4x800m title in 7:12.15 and earn outstanding performer honors. It was the third-fastest time ever by a collegiate team.

Princeton's men won their first Penn Relays title since 1940, capturing the 4xMile with a 16:19.98, while Georgetown's women scored an upset win in the distance medley relay with a 10:51.49. Emily Infeld's 4:31.56 anchor 1600 leg helped the Hoyas move to No. 6 on the all-time world list.

The sixth world-leading relay mark was posted by Texas A&M's women in the 4x200m, where the Aggies clocked the seventh-fastest time in world history with a 1:29.96.

Nine other U.S. yearly best relay marks at Penn included a 9:18.09 by USA Red in the Nike Men's distance medley, where Bernard Lagat had a stellar 2:48.29 lead-off 1200m carry. Phoebe Wright's 1:59.25 anchor 800 earned USA Red second place in the women's sprint medley at 3:37.81, the third-fastest time ever by a U.S. team.

Two-time Olympic 400m hurdles champion Angelo Taylor split 45.49 on the final leg of the Visa Men's 4x400 to give USA Red a 3:02.40 victory.


Always a safe bet for super distance racing, the Stanford 10,000m’s did not disappoint. American record holder Shalane Flanagan battled with Kenya's Sally Kipyego until the final 100m, when Kipyego pulled away to win in 30:38.35 with Flanagan just behind her at 30:39.57, the third-fastest time ever by an American.

Kenya's Bidan Karoki used a late-race burst to win the men's race in 27:13.67, a PR and world leader, but Bobby Curtis was the big surprise as he cut almost 10 seconds off his previous lifetime best to take second and move to No. 7 on the all-time U.S. list with a 27:24.67. Billy Nelson was fifth in 27:28.19 to move to ninth on the ATL, and Matt Tegenkamp was right behind him at 27:28.22 to leap to 10th on the ATL, pushing legendary Craig Virgin out of the top 10. All three U.S. men bettered the IAAF World Championships qualifying standard of 27:40.

Billy Nelson's 8:22.44 win in the men's 3000 steeplechase gave him the national lead, and in the women's 100 hurdles, Stanford's Kori Carter took over eighth on the all-time U.S. Junior list with her 13.12.


Olympic 400 silver medalist Jeremy Wariner won a basketful of Drake Relays titles while at Baylor, and he added another individual gold to his collection with a U.S.-best 45.19. Kara Patterson, who set the American Record at the USA Nationals last year in Des Moines, uncorked the top javelin mark by an American this year with her 57.74m/189-5.

Erik Sowinski anchored the Iowa men to a U.S. 2011 best in the sprint medley, as his 1:46.7 carry stopped the clock at 3:16.18, and Gwen Berry of Southern Illinois had a massive PR in the women's hammer to take over the No. 3 slot on the all-time collegiate list at 70.52m/231-4.


It's a tough job, but some of the nation's top discus throwers endured the hardships of Maui to turn in the best efforts of 2011. Lance Brooks grabbed the men's national lead in the second competition with a 64.38m/211-3 throw, and reigning Olympic champion Stephanie Brown-Trafton assumed the women's U.S. lead with her 64.13m/210-4 toss.

One day later in Irvine, Calif., Wes Stockbarger matched Brooks with a 64.38m/211-3 effort.


Morgann LeLeux of New Iberia (La.) Catholic High School finally broke the girls' prep pole vault record, clearing 4.34m/14-2.75 to add a quarter-inch to the previous record at a regional meet in Lafayette.

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