INDIANAPOLIS – More than 100 reigning World Indoor and Outdoor Master champions will be among the more than 800 athletes ages 35-95+ on hand for the USA Masters Indoor Track & Field Championships Friday through Sunday at the Harry Gladstein Fieldhouse in Bloomington, Ind. The meet will serve as a tune-up for the World Masters Indoor Championships, which are slated for April 3-8 in Jyvaskyla, Finland.
Competition begins at 1 p.m. Friday, 9 a.m. Saturday and 10:15 a.m. Sunday. For more information and updates on the meet continue to check www.usatf.org. The event is free and open to the public.
The most notable names to look for include two-time Sullivan Award finalist as America’s top athlete and winner of ten gold medals at a single World Championships Phillippa Raschker (W65, Marietta, Ga.); world class jazz musician Nolan Shaheed (M60, Pasadena, Calif.); world champions Kathy Martin (W60, Northport, N.Y.) and Robert Thomas (M45, Indianapolis, Ind.); world pole vault record holder Paul Babits (M50, Fort Wayne, Ind.) and 1987 Super Bowl champion Phil McConkey (M55, La Jolla, Calif.).
The list of entries also includes the names of three Olympians in Chris Faulknor (1984 and 1988 for Jamaica, entered for M45 in the 60m, 200m and 400), Lorna Forde (1972 and 1976 Olympian for Barbados; entered in the W55 200m and 400m) and Jim Barrineau (1976 Games; entered in M55 high jump).
Additional athletes to watch:
Kathy Bergen (W70, La Canada, Calif.) ran the 100m in 14.76 to become the first 70+ woman worldwide to break 15 seconds in that event. Kathy is entered in the 60m, 200m and high jump.
Brandi Bernert (W35, Denver, Colo.) still holds the Colorado State University 200m record at 24.17. One year ago at the Masters Indoor Championships she ran 24.84 in that event.
Christa Bortignon (W70, West Vancouver, B.C., Canada) recently broke five world records in a single meet. She is entered in the 60m, 200m, 400m, 60m hurdles, high jump, long jump, triple jump, shot put and pentathlon.
Jeanne Daprano (W85, Fayetteville, Ga.) in 2007 became the first 70+ woman in history to break seven minutes in the mile in 6:47.91.
Antwon Dussett (M35, Peoria, Ill.), who was an Olympic Trials qualifier while at Grambling State University, ran time of 21.57 in the 200m and 47.34 in the 400m at the 2011 Masters World Outdoor Championship.
Carol Finsrud (W50, Lockhart, Texas) competed in the Olympic Trials in 2000 and is entered in all three throws. She is also the reigning World Outdoor Masters champion in the discus.
Rita Hanscom (W55, San Diego, Calif.) was voted the World Masters Athletics “Athlete of the Year” in 2009 and will compete in the 60m, 200m, 400m, 60m hurdles, high jump, pole vault, long jump and the pentathlon.
Renee Henderson (W50, Merchantville, N.J.) currently holds American indoor records for her age group in the 60m, 200m and 400m.
Bob Lida (M75, Wichita, Kans.) currently holds the pending world record for men 75-79 in the 200m or 27.03 and 8.49 in the 60m.
Myrle Mensey (W65, St. Louis, Mo.) is the American record holder outdoors and indoors in the weight throw and superweight for women in her age group.
Khalid Mulazim (M60, Cleveland, Ohio) is the world outdoor record holder for M45-49 in the 400m at 50.18 and the reigning World Outdoor champion in the 200m and 400m.
Charmaine Roberts (W40, Beltsville, Md.) won the 400m at the World Outdoor Masters Championships in 2009 and was second in the 400m in 2011.
Lisa Ryan (W45, Sioux City, Iowa) will run the 400m, 800m, mile and 3000m as the reigning world champion in the 2000m steeplechase.
Christoph Schmid (M60, Wooster, Ohio) is the 2009 male masters race walker of the year in the United States and holds the American indoor record for men 60-64 in the 3000m race walk.
Joy Upshaw (W55, Lafayette, California) ran 26.24 seconds in the 200m and 5.45m/17-10.75 in the long jump to set the world record in 2011.
Maurelhena Walles (W40, Brooklyn, N.Y.) won bronze in the 400m at the World Masters Outdoor Championships and ran on one (35-39) world indoor record setting team in the 4x400m.
Ruth Welding (W60, Elk Grove Village, Ill.) is entered in all three throws as the reigning 2011 World Masters Outdoor champion in the hammer and weight throw.
Thad Wilson (M60, Oxnard, Calif.) is the reigning world champion in both the 100m and 300m hurdles. He owns the world record in the 100m hurdles for men 60-64 in a time of 14.37.
Carol Young (W75, Marietta, Georgia) holds the American indoor records in the weight throw and superweight for the 65-69 and 70-74 age groups.
There will also be a number of Indiana residents competing including: Andrea Eagleman (W30, Bloomington), Latashia Key (W35, Indianapolis), Danelle Readinger (W35, Terre Haute), Brendon Falconer (M35, Newburgh), David Buysse (M40, Carmel), Anthony Heath (M40, Indianapolis), George Joachim (M40, Fort Wayne), Matthew McCubbins (M40, South Bend), Tim Ryder (M40, Bloomington), Chet Clodfelter (M45, Roachdale), Antonio Palacios (M45, Bloomington), Kurt Schernekau (M45, Indianapolis), Robert Thomas (M45, Indianapolis), Karen Rieger (W45, Indianapolis), Paul Babits (M50, Fort Wayne), Brenda Babits (W50, Fort Wayne), Thomas Bunner (M55, Fort Wayne), Damon Clements (M55, Crawfordsville), Gary Hunter (M55, Fort Wayne), Jerry Orange (M55, Floyds Knobs), Tom Smith (M55, Fort Wayne), Dick Kochert (M60, Remington), Cathy Mayfield (W60, Indianapolis), Max Walker (M65, Greenwood), Jerry Byrd (M70, Warsaw) and Ray Everson (M75, Mooresville).
For more information on the USA Masters Indoor Championships continue to see www.usatf.org.
For media trackside athlete interviews and more information, contact Bob Weiner, USATF National Masters Media Chair, at email@example.com or cells 202-306-1200 or 202-329-1700.
Press release assembled by Bob Weiner, Mary Trotto and Pete Taylor.