INDIANAPOLIS – The most celebrated sprint rivalry in women’s track and field kicks off in the 2012 Olympic year when American Allyson Felix and Jamaican Veronica Campbell-Brown run the 60 meters this Saturday at the USA Track & Field Classic in Fayetteville, Arkansas.
Held at the University of Arkansas’ Randal Tyson Center, the USA Track & Field Classic is the third stop on USATF’s 2012 Indoor Visa Championship Series. The meet will be televised on ESPN2 from 12-2 p.m. Eastern on Sunday, February 12.
Felix v. VCB, Round 1
In the last two Olympic Games and last four World Outdoor championships 200m finals, Felix and Campbell-Brown alone have accounted for every gold medal and all but two silver medals. Felix is a three-time world champion and two-time Olympic silver medalist, while VCB is the two-time Olympic gold medalist, the 2011 world champion and a two-time world runner-up to Felix.
Campbell-Brown is also the defending world champion indoors at 60 meters and is coming off a win January 28 at the U.S. Open of Track & Field at Madison Square Garden. The short, 60-meter distance favors Campbell-Brown’s explosiveness, but Felix’s shorter-sprint chops were on display when she won the 2010 USA Outdoor 100m title. The most versatile sprinter in the world, Felix in 2011 won the U.S. 400m crown to go along with her five outdoor 200m crowns.
The two will face a top field that includes defending USA Indoor champion Alexandria Anderson, 2008 Olympic Trials 100m champion Muna Lee and two-time NCAA 200m champion Porscha Lucas.
The men’s 60m is equally deep, with Olympic and World Championship medalists and finalists filling the field, including Americans Wallace Spearmon, Darvis Patton, Justin Gatlin and Shawn Crawford; Olympic 100m silver medalist Richard Thompson of Trinidad and Churandy Martina of Netherlands Antilles.
The men’s and women’s 60 meters at the USA Track & Field Classic will include semifinals and finals.
In the men’s 400m, 2011 World Outdoor 400m champion Kirani James of Grenada will run on the track where the world indoor record in 2005 was set by LaShawn Merritt and broken few weeks later by Kerron Clement. James outdueled Merritt, the defending Olympic champion, to win the 2011 world title, and he is coming off a win Saturday at the New Balance Indoor Grand Prix. The U.S. field will include Olympic bronze medalist David Neville and 2009 USA Indoor champion Jamaal Torrance.
American juggernaut in WLJ, hurdles
The women’s hurdles and long jump will feature many of Team USA’s most accomplished athletes. In the long jump, world indoor and outdoor champion Brittney Reese jumps against 2011 USA Indoor champion Janay DeLoach, Olympic heptathlon silver medalist Hyleas Fountain and World Outdoor finalist Funmi Jimoh.
The 60m hurdles includes 2008 Olympic gold medalist Dawn Harper, World Outdoor champion Michelle Perry, Fountain and two-time USA Outdoor champion Ginnie Powell.
The USA Track & Field Classic will be held in conjunction with the 2012 Tyson Invitational, one of the nation’s premier collegiate meets. For more information and scheduled fields for the USA Track & Field Classic, visit www.visachampionshipseries.com.