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News and Notes, Volume 12, Number 16

1. adidas Grand Prix to feature top 1500-meter Americans
2. Universal Sports Network’s countdown hits the track with sprinters Felix, Gatlin

adidas Grand Prix to feature top 1500-meter Americans
Nine athletes who have won a total of 26 World Championships medals have been added to the field for the adidas Grand Prix on June 9, organizers have announced. Among them are Jenny Simpson, the reigning women’s 1500-meter world champion, along with Matthew Centrowitz, Bernard Lagat and Leo Manzano, the top three American men at the distance.

Tickets for the adidas Grand Prix, in its eighth year as one of the premier track and field events in the world, are available at or by calling 1-877-849-8722. The event begins at 1 p.m. (ET) on June 9 at Icahn Stadium on Randall’s Island in New York. The third stop on the outdoor Visa Championship Series, the adidas Grand Prix will be broadcast live on NBC 3:30-5:00 p.m. (ET).

Simpson, 25, a 2008 Olympian in the 3000-meter steeplechase, was the surprise winner at 1500m in the IAAF World Championships last summer. In seventh place with 200 meters remaining, Simpson pulled to the outside and stormed to her first world title. The American record holder in the steeplechase, a mark she set in finishing fifth at the 2009 World Championships, Simpson will compete in New York at 800m.

The field for the men’s 1500m is led by the trio of Americans who went 1-2-3 in the 2011 Track & Field News rankings. Centrowitz, who at 22 is a rising young American star, had a spectacular season in 2011, winning both the NCAA and USA Outdoor titles at the distance before earning bronze at the IAAF World Championships. He finished the year ranked #1 in the U.S. and #8 in the world.

Lagat, 37, is a two-time Olympic medalist (2000, 2004) at 1500m, the 2007 World Outdoor gold medalist in the 1500m and 5000m and is the owner of seven American indoor and outdoor records.

Neither is a stranger to New York City: Lagat is the eight-time Wanamaker Mile winner at the Millrose Games and just this winter broke the American record for 5000m indoors at the event, while Centrowitz won the 2012 edition of the Wanamaker.

Manzano, 27, who finished the year ranked #3 in the U.S., is a 2008 Olympian and three-time member of Team USA for the World Championships. Late last month, he anchored his team to a thrilling victory in the distance medley relay in the Penn Relays, outgunning the venerable Lagat.

Challenging them will be Australia’s Craig Mottram, 31, the 2005 World Outdoor Championships bronze medalist at 5000m and Kenya’s Augustine Choge, the 2005 World Junior Cross Country champion and 2012 World Indoor Championships silver medalist at 3000m.

The sixth stop on the international Samsung Diamond League circuit, check all for more information, the event’s pages on Facebook at and on Twitter at On Twitter, use #agpny.

Universal Sports Network’s countdown hits the track with sprinters Felix, Gatlin
Universal Sports Network’s Countdown to London show will continue this Wednesday, May 9, at 8 p.m. (ET) to take a comprehensive look at the most compelling stories leading up to the 2012 Olympic Games in London.

Hosted by Craig Hummer and Amy Bender, this week’s Countdown to London will highlight news from the world of track and field, as Olympic gold medalist sprinter Allyson Felix will be featured as she discusses her career and goals for this summer’s Olympic Games along with Olympic gold medalist sprinter Justin Gatlin. Appearing in the studio will be Universal Sports Network/NBC analyst and four-time Olympic medalist Ato Boldon who will discuss the top Olympic hopeful sprinters heading into London. 

The show’s other weekly features include Reliving the Glory presented by Panasonic with flashbacks to great moments in Olympic history with the airing of archived short films by legendary Olympic filmmaker Bud Greenspan.

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