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Olympians and Paralympians to face off in Des Moines at Drake Relays presented by Hy-Vee

4/25/2018
 

DES MOINES, Iowa -- The fields are stacked for the 109th edition of the Drake Relays Presented by Hy-Vee. A total of 57 Olympians/Paralympians that collectively hold eight gold medals, seven silver and eight bronze are set to compete at Drake Stadium on the campus of Drake University.

 

USATF.TV will stream full meet coverage beginning on USATF.TV+ on Thursday, April 26 at 4:30 p.m. EST, followed by Friday at 8:00 a.m. and Saturday at 9:30 a.m. NBCSN and NBC Sports Gold will air elite coverage Saturday, April 28 from 3:00 p.m. - 5:00 p.m. EST. Click here for a complete schedule.

 

Drake Relays week kicked off April 24 with the USATF 1 Mile Championships hosted by Grand Blue Mile, with Riley Masters and Emily Lipari clinching the titles.

 

Tickets can be purchased here and fans are encouraged to follow along with #MyDrakeRelays on Twitter, Instagram and Facebook.

 

Men’s 100m

The 100 meter field features five-time USATF national champion and three-time World Championship bronze medalist Mike Rodgers, 2017 World Championship team member Ameer Webb and a pair of two-time Drake Relays 100m champions in Brandon Carnes and Isiah Young. Young won the 200m U.S. National Title at Drake Stadium in 2013 and has been a member of three US national teams.

 

Women’s 2 Mile

Rio Olympic 1,500m bronze medalist and five-time Drake Relays champion Jenny Simpson returns to Drake Stadium in an attempt to break Shannon Rowbury’s 2014 American outdoor two-mile record (9:20.25) on Friday, April 27. Brenda Martinez looks to improve upon her second place finish last year, while American junior 1,500m record-holder and high school 3,000m record-holder Alexa Efraimson will challenge the elite veteran field.

 

Men’s 110m Hurdles and Women’s 100m Hurdles

The men’s 110m hurdles and women’s 100m hurdles feature both world record holders, four Olympic medalists and eight total Olympians. Aries Merritt, the world record holder at 12.80 and 2012 Olympic gold medalist will be joined by 2016 Olympic finalist Devon Allen, 2018 World Indoor silver medalist Jarret Eaton and Jamaican national record holder and 2016 Olympic Gold medalist Omar McLeod.

 

Highlighting the women’s field is Keni Harrison, the world record holder at 12.20 and 2018 World Indoor gold medalist. Challenging Harrison is the 2016 Olympic bronze medalist, Kristi Castlin, as well as 2008 Olympic gold medalist and 2012 Olympic silver medalist Dawn Harper-Nelson and 2017 World 400m hurdles champion, Kori Carter.

 

400m Hurdles

The 400m hurdles field boasts 11 Olympians and five Olympic medalists featuring 2016 Olympic gold medalist and 2017 World Championships silver medalist Dalilah Muhammad, as well as 2016 Olympic bronze medalist, Ashley Spencer, and defending Drake Relays champion Georganne Moline. The men’s field features 2012 Olympic silver medalist and 2016 Olympian Michael Tinsley as well as 2008 Olympic bronze medalist Bershawn Jackson and 2017 Drake Relays champion Michael Stigler. Jackson and Tinsley hold the two fastest PRs in the men’s field of 47.30 and 47.70, respectively.

 

Men’s and Women’s Pole Vault

The pole vault competition is stacked with Olympians and world champions set for a unique competition slated for five males and five females. Sam Kendricks, Scott Houston, Shawn Barber, Andrew Irwin and Mike Arnold will join Sandi Morris, Katie Nageotte, Alysha Newman, Kristen Brown and Kristen Hixson will vault in the atrium of Capital Square in Downtown Des Moines.

 

Fresh off his pole vault silver medal at the 2018 IAAF World Indoor Championships, Olympic bronze medalist Kendricks kicks off his outdoor season. Kendricks will be challenged by 2018 USATF Indoor Champion Scott Houston and Canadian record holder Shawn Barber.

 

On the women’s side, Olympic silver medalist, 2018 World Indoor champion and American record holder Sandi Morris will face 2018 USATF Indoor Champion Katie Nageotte, Canadian record holder Alysha Newman and six other vaulters in the 11-athlete field that have cleared 15 feet.

 

Women’s High Jump

In the high jump, Vashti Cunningham will have stiff competition to reclaim the Drake Relays title she won previously in 2016. A pair of national record holders, Lavern Spencer of St. Lucia and Doreen Amata of Nigeria will challenge Cunningham, as well as 2016 Olympians Inika McpHerson and Canadian Alyx Treasure.

 

Men’s Shot Put

Olympic shot put gold medalist and Olympic record holder Ryan Crouser headlines an impressive shot put field set to compete Saturday at 2:30pm. Fellow Americans Ryan Whiting and Darrell Hill will join Crouser in the ring. Whiting was a 2012 Olympian and won the USATF Indoor title in February and Hill, a 2016 Olympian finished second to Whiting at USATF Indoor Championships and placed sixth overall at the 2018 World Indoor Championships in early March.

 

Men’s Discus

Four Americans will look to take down Jamaican Traves Smikle who owns the farthest personal best (67.72m/222-2) in the field by more than five feet. Americans Jared Schuurmans and Rodney Brown hold two of the farthest throws in the field behind Smikle, with personal bests of 66.10m/216-10 and 66.00m/216.6, respectively.

 

Men’s Paralympic 100m/200m

David Brown, the 2016 Paralympic 100m champion and 200m silver medalist highlights a field loaded with Paralympians. Josiah Jamison won the 100m gold medal in the 2008 Paralympics and was a member of the 2012 team. Additional competitors include Regas Wood who competed in the 2016 Paralympics 200m and long jump, Markieth Price who competed in the 2016 Paralympics long jump and 2012 400m and Tim Tanner.

 

Women’s Wheelchair 100m/400m

Leading the field is Hannah McFadden a 2016 and 2012 Paralympian as well as 2016 Paralympian Kelsey LeFevour. The field also includes Yen Hoang, Sophie Munter, Hannah Dederick and Elizabeth Floch.

 

About USATF

USA Track & Field (USATF) is the National Governing Body for track and field, long-distance running and race walking in the United States. USATF encompasses the world's oldest organized sports, some of the most-watched events of Olympic broadcasts, the country’s No. 1 high school and junior high school participatory sport and more than 30 million adult runners in the United States. For more information on USATF, visit www.usatf.org.

 



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