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Live Quotes Day 8 (Sunday, July1) - U.S. Olympic Team Trials

7/1/2012
 
Women's 20 km race walk
Maria Michta - first place

On the race...
"I knew coming in with my workouts, that I was in the best shape I've ever been in, in my life. I was just ready to go. I wanted the A standard, it didn't happen today, I don't really know why."

"When you are out there alone with the wind and all it gets hard, but when you have someone else out there and keep going back and forth, it is good. It pushes everyone to their best. I didn't PR, but the two of them [Melville and Gray] PR'd with huge times.
On the crowd...
The crowd, it was great to hear the noise, but the best crowd is my family. My boyfriend being here, my whole family, my mom, my dad, my sisters, my brother... it was awesome to have the whole family be out here.
On being an Olympian...
"I was 10-years-old when I watched the Olympics on TV. Ever since I saw Kerri Strug stick the landing, I just fell in love with the Olympics and I wanted to be an Olympian."

Miranda Melville - second place
On her race...
"I didn't know what they [Michta and Gray], I wasn't quite sure how much I had left in me, but I knew I had enough to be willing to push. I knew no matter what I wasn't going to give up on this. This is a huge thing, to go and represent your country in these games, and I wasn't going to give it up easily. When I moved into third and I was making up that ground, I was in the hunt and I wasn't going to slow down. I had to go after it, I didn't have a choice."
On the result...
"Maria is a phenomenal athlete, she has a phenomenal kick in her, and she is my teammate. If anyone else could go besides me, I'm glad it's my teammate."

Erin Gray - third place
On her race...
"Every time I would take the lead, I would pick it up 4-5 seconds a lap, then I would let Maria do the work, and she would lag the pace. I honestly felt that the slower laps made my stride inefficient  enough, that by the time it was time to go, I had gotten into a really slow rhythm and just didn't have a response. It didn't happen today, but 4 years from now I'll be stronger. I'm fitter than I've ever been. I've only been doing this sport for two years, and the other girls have been doing this for more than a decade."

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Women's Javelin

Haley Crouser, 7th place

On the race…
“I was really really happy how it turned out after Friday. It was the best series of my life so I am really happy. I am happy with 179.”
On being nervous…
“I was nervous on Friday, but more so on Friday.”
On Kara Patterson and Rachel Yurkovich…
“They’ve always been really encouraging. I’ve always looked up to Rachel and Kara. It’s an amazing experience competing against them.”

Rachel Yurkovich, 4th place, going to London
On not placing…
“I’m going to the Olympics and I’m elated, but this was a little bit of a sting…I’m jyst trying to look forward. I’ve been having great practices and I’m upset those didn’t translate.”
On preparation for the Olympics…
“I’m fully aware what I’m capable of. I know I have the potential to throw far.”

Kimberley Hamilton, 3rd Place, No “A” Standard
On her throws…
“I felt good, my legs were fresh, and I pr’d. Overall I’m happy with that.”
On her expectations for the trials…
“I always set the bar high for myself…I definitely expected to be here and in London.”
On her preparation for the trials…
“I’ve been training hard and I made a big coaching change.”

Brittany Borman, 1st place
On her thoughts after the final…
“I have always dreamed of being here, and coming here has been such a blessing. My coaching and training has been great and because of it I was more than prepared for today. I am looking forward to going to London.”
On her last throw…
“I didn’t really know what happened differently. I prayed before it and I am still in shock about how far I threw.”

Kara Patterson, 2nd place
On her throws…
“I came into today really wanting to make a statement in the first round. I would have liked to have thrown farther. I am really happy to make the team. It was one of the best competitions ever.”
On hurting her knee…
“My biggest problem is being forward on the throw. The pressure I put on it kind of hyperextended it.”
On her boyfriend Russ…
“Russ and I have been dating five years now and to see him fall short of his dream is really really tough. He’s just amazing at supporting me. He’s hurting but he’s here supporting me. I am very greatful for him.”
On her lap around Hayward Field…
“I am very extremely thankful for Asics at this meet. It’s a family. To be around them the whole meet and to be supported. My parents were over there. The support I have in the northwest is amazing.”
 
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Men's 200 Meter

Darvis Patton, 5th place

On the race…
“I felt good. I think I waited too late to kick. Fourth place is a tough place to be. I am truly blessed. Not quite the ending I wanted.”
 
On being in lane one…
“I knew I had a good chance even though I was in lane one.”
 
On the possibility of competing in the relays at the Olympics…
“Official announcement is tomorrow. It’s more than likely I’ll be there. I hope so.”
 
On what’s next…
“Anytime I am healthy I make the final. I am going to keep going.”

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Women's Long Jump

Brittney Reese, 1st Place

On how she felt about her jumps…
“I felt real good going in today. I did sprain my ankle a little on one of the jumps, but other than that, I just feel like we have a great group of girls going to London. We are ready to sweep.”
On her last jump…
“I never want to lose a meet. I looked down at the mark and didn’t see anything so I am happy that I won the protest. But it is not about winning here, it is about going to London and that is where I’m going.”
On her teammate Janay DeLoach…
“Janay has improved every year and it is great having her on the team with me. I’m happy she is out here to battle it out with us in London and possibly win a gold.”
On why she believes it will be a sweep in London…
“I think we have the jumps on our side right now. I think if we can all produce seven meter jumps, like we have been, that we will sweep.”

Chelsea Hayes, 2nd Place
On the key factor in placing 2nd
“My speed. In preliminaries I wasn’t really running. I really had to use my speed on that runway and that got me 23.”

 
Janay DeLoach, 3rd Place
On placing 3rd
“I’m going to London and that’s all that matters. Today I got a bronze and in London hopefully I’ll get more.”
On growing up in Alaska…
“Up there we only have 4 to 6 meets a year, so you have to do your best.”

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Men's 400 Hurdles

Michael Tinsley, 1st place

On the race…
“Once I came off hurdle seven into eight I just went into overdrive. I’ve been running with these guys for a long time. I am just really thankful.”
 
On staying positive throughout his career…
“I’ve been training so long and being so close has kept me motivated to keep running. Coming into this Olympic Trials, after getting fourth at worlds, I just made sure I did every small thing to make it through each round. I came out on top. It was amazing.”
 
On coming from a small school in Jackson State…
“Coming from Jackson State I was the underdog a lot in college letting Kerron beat up on me. It just feels so good I don’t even know how to explain it. I just went out and tried to execute. I am happy to be in my first Olympics at 28.”

Angelo Taylor, 2nd place, Final
On the race…
“Well, I knew it was going to be a tough, grind-out race. I got out pretty good, and I was going at a fast pace down the backstretch. I clipped hurdle #9, and it threw me off, but I told myself to keep going, and I regained my composure. I’d like to congratulate Michael and Kerron for making the team.”
Preparation
“Not many people make it to their 4th Olympic team, so this is something that I really wanted to do. I knew the competition I was facing. My main goal was just to stay healthy…and goal #2 was just to make the team. It took sacrifice, and putting in the time day in and day out to get to this point.
Secret to long career…
“Motivation, just staying motivated. I’ve had a lot of trials, and some of those were failures. After Beijing, I immediately made it my goal to get my third Olympic medal.”
“I’ve been given a God-given ability to run, and I know deep down I was put here to do this.”

Kerron Clement, 3rd place
On the race…
“I got to get out really hard. I kind of stutter stepped. I was just thinking I have to get to third.”

Bershawn Jackson, 4th place
Post-race reflections…
“Disappointed. It’s the worst place you can possibly finish. The hurdle clipped my foot and messed me up at the end.”
“It’s a heartbreaker for me because I have a family to support, so not making the team is disappointing.”



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Women's 400 Hurdles

Lashinda Demus, 1st place

 Final
On her overall feeling after the race…
“I felt good but I am still coming back from my injury and I didn’t do as good as I wanted. I started feeling fatigued after the tenth hurdle but overall I am happy with my time but I still have more work to do.”
On her injury…
“I had a grade three tear in my hamstring and I have absolutely no idea where it came from but I am working through it.”
On how she practices hurdling…
“I practice on the outside lanes, that is where I feel most comfortable. So when I got put in lane eight today but I got over it.”
On missing the team in 2008…
“Missing the team in ’08 was heartbreaking. It was a burden on me and I definitely have unfinished business with this and I am a fighter so I will never give up.”
On the hurdles…
“You have to really prove in our race that you are the best and I really like that.”

Georganne Moline, 2nd place
On her race…
I couldn’t have asked for a better race. I ran a lifetime pr and that was amazing.”
On making team USA…
“This is definitely redemption. Falling at NC’s was heartbreaking. This is a dream come true. I couldn’t be happier.”
On being on the same team as Lashinda Demus…
“It’s an honor. We help each other and push each other to run better.”

T’Erea Brown, 3rd Place
On her race…
“I thought I got out really well. I wasn’t feeling well all day. I’m just happy I got the third spot and got in.”
On preparing for the trials…
“I always try to come out and be focused. I tried to come in with tunnel vision and make the team.”

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Women's 1500 Meter

Morgan Uceny, 1st place

On her race…
“I didn’t know what to expect. Today was a little more windy so I didn’t want to take the lead. So I stayed tucked in around second and third the entire race. I was being really aware of who was around me and also in making sure I was okay. Once I saw I had the top three I went for the win. They didn’t make it easy on me, but I gave it a shot.”
On looking forward to London…
“I haven’t been thinking about it too much because you can’t overlook something as big and important as the Olympic trials. I had to go through each round and now that I have and they are over I can’t wait to go to London and fight to get a gold for the USA.”
On the trials…
“I think that it is such great preparation for the Olympics. When you are competing against medalists it is great practice for us having to compete against medalists at the Olympics.”
On her running strategy…
“In the first round I wasn’t planning on being in the front and I just went with it and I got comfortable with it. I like making other people hurt, I like making other people hurt a lot. I’m happy with the outcome.”

Shannon Rowbury, 2nd Place
On preparing for the trials…
“Going in I knew with three rounds it would be a lot different than worlds. I also prepared for carnage.”
On her race…
“I just made sure to protect myself. I looked at the monitor and saw we (Simpson and Uceny) had separated ourselves.”
On making team USA…
“I’m so ecstatic to make the team and represent USA with these ladies. Relief has to be the biggest emotion. All three of us wanted to visualize August…I can’t think of a better women’s 1500 meter team to be sending. Watch out world.”

Jenny Simpson, 3rd Place
On her race…
“It was a difficult race. I remember at one point I was in a compromised position. I found a way out with 800 meters to go. I kept my cool and got to the outside.”
On placing third…
“The hardest thing about the trials is that your emotions can slip away. I didn’t care about my time or my place. I was just so happy the three of us made it.”
On making team USA in two different events…
“Making a team in two different events I’m able to bring a special experience to the table. It’s a really exciting thing.”
On making team USA…
“I think the hardest thing to prove is getting through this. Everything I had to prove is in the books for this year. I’m excited to move beyond this point.”

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Men's 1500 Meter 


Leonel Manzano, 1st place

On the race…
“I want to start by thanking my sponsor Nike. I wasn’t really sure what to expect but I am happy with the outcome.”
On the style and speed of the race…
“Normally tthese kinds of races are really slow but once I saw the pace of the reace here I knew I needed to stay up in the front. The athletes here are all just so good. So I knew I needed to stay calm and take it home.”
On support from his home town…
“I think everyone is really excited. There are not too many 1500m racers coming out of Texas, I think there are like one or two, so I have gotten a lot of support.”
On the last 100 meters…
“I like to take it back to 400 meters. When four or five guys passed by me I knew that I was in trouble so then I pushed hard and got ahead of them and stayed on Matthew. I think we had a little elbow battle there at the end which took me off guard but then I won.”

Andrew Wheating, 2nd Place
On making team USA…
“I’m happy to be done. I’ve been sitting around with all this anxiety building up.”
On his injuries…
“My foot will be fine. Plantars just acts up. As far as my hamstring—I had a sold two months with no problem. The last thing I was thinking about was my hamstring going into the trials.”
On his race…
“Around 400 meters to go I realized I was in a deep hole. I tried to keep an open lane. I came off the turn, saw the finish line and just kicked as hard as I could.”
On his performance at the Prefontaine Classic…”Everyone is allowed to have bad races. Pre was mine. You define yourself how you respond.”
Matthew Centrowitz, 3rd Place
On making team USA…
“This is my first USA team. I’m very excited.”
On his race…
“I just wanted to put myself in a good position. I knew I was fit and I wanted to come out with top 3.”            
On how he feels physically…
“I had a minor setback after worlds, but now I’m healthy, 100%. A few months back it was stressful, but I had great support from coaches, family and friends.”         

Andrew Bayer, 4th place
On the race
“I was trying to be competitive. I got out well and in the end I tried to get around guys as they tied up. I felt good out there.”
On running lots of races this year as a collegian
“I think all the races I’ve done this season have really helped me. I’ve been feeling better every day. I think running rounds at Big Tens and NCAAs and winning both of those championships has given me a lot of confidence.”


Jordan McNamara, 7th place
On the race…
“Felt great, lulled myself into a bit of a box. Just didn’t have the last 150 that I needed.”
 
On working together with William Leer…
“We had it arranged. We figured we might as well give a shot. I’d rather be seventh and give it my all. We knew it was going to be a dog fight.”
On what is next…
“Go to Europe and chase fast times. It’s a tough one to swallow.”

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Men's 200 Meter

Wallace Spearman, 1st place

On the race…
“I can say last year I didn’t even make it out of the first round. My main focus was to maintain or close the stagger on Crawford. It’s God given talent.”
On going back to the Olympics…
“That’s definitely something that’s been on my mind for a while. If I didn’t make the team this year that would have been on my mind for the rest of my life. I don’t take my second chances lightly.”
On the Olympics…
“I am going to worry about myself. We’re going to figure out how to run faster.”
On Usain Bolt…
“The first time I saw Bolt he was playing tag with little girls. He likes to have fun, I like to have fun. In the card room  he was joking around and I chimed in. We’ve been friends ever since.”
On the younger sprinters going to London with him…
“I’ve been teaching them what my elders taught me. These are young. They had long college seasons and they still came out here and placed in the top three.”

Maurice Mitchell, 2nd place, Finals
Post-race reflections…
“My main goal is to perform to the best of my ability. I’m happy with my training and I’m glad to be a part of this team.”
On his successful transition from running in college…
“Just taking advantage of all the training and races. I trusted my coaches and believed in myself.”
 
On running against Usain Bolt…
“For me, it’s a surprise, but I’m healthy and hungry, and I’m going to go out there and run to the best of my ability.”

Isiah Young, 3rd place, Final
Post-race reflection…
“Today, I just believed in my coach telling me I was here for a reason and I just finished strong.”

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Max Siegel, CEO USATF
Thoughts on the Trials…
“I had an opportunity to walk on the property, and frankly, the volunteers made it a great experience.”
“I think the athletes performed well, and I think we’ll have a great showing at London.”
Thoughts on the run-off…
“A lot of folks criticized us for not having a plan in place, but I think we have a plan in the best interest of the athlete.”
On not speaking up about the run-off sooner…
“No, I don’t regret it. The fact of the matter is, we’re here to lead and to serve. The athletes’ needs and interests were at the top of our list. We worked in consultation with them and reached a solution.”


Andrew Valmon Men’s Head Coach Team USA  
Outlook on team…
“We have an overall, strong team and extremely gifted athletes that will be performing in London.”
On the goal of winning at least 30 medals…
“I think we have a strong team, and obviously if we’re clicking on all cylinders, then anything is possible.”

Amy Deem, Women’s Coach Team USA
On the Olympics…
“I am very excited. I think we have an extremely strong team heading to London. I am excited to work with this team this summer.”
What she was excited to see at the trials…
“I was excited to see some young and new athletes perform well, we have a lot of strong events. I think we could go four or five deep in some events and still have a very strong team.”
 
Vin Lananna, Co-chair of TrackTown 12
Reflections on event…
“’08 was a great meet, and I think we have a great team. London should be fun and we plan on winning lots of medals.”
“Our challenge was to make this better than 2008, and we coined the term ‘Best Meet Ever.’ First and foremost, this meet was for the athlete. Second, it was great to see the performances by the athletes.”
On the run-off tomorrow…
“We’ll do everything we can to make it a great event, and whoever comes to watch will be impressed.”
“The breakdown for the race is no small task. We don’t want to have this race in a half-construction site, so we’ll keep everything up. Our biggest goal is to make sure the athletes are safe. We have creative minds working right now to create other events around it.”
On Hayward Field magic…
“The Hayward Field magic is great for everybody. I think the fans cheer louder for the Oregonians, but they appreciate any good performances.”
Future goals…
“After this meet, our goal is to dig deep. We have NCAAs in 2012 and 2013, and the junior championships in 2013. We will seriously pursue getting the IAAF championship.”
“To move the spot of track and field forward, it’s crucial that the United States is involved. We’ll look at this community, Portland, and the state of Oregon.”
 
Greg Irwin, co-chair of TrackTown 12
On the trials…
“First off, I want to congratulate all of Eugene and Oregon on a great Olympic Trials. Without Vin and his leadership, this wouldn’t be possible. Without Vin, TrackTown isn’t TrackTown.”
 
On his favorite part of the trials…
“I would say that the opportunity we presented to the decathletes and the most magic was created around Ashton. The opportunity for Ashton to set the world record in front of those individuals (previous world record holders) was fantastic for this event.”


 





 




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