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Reebok Grand Prix

Held: June 11, 2005 at Icahn Stadium, New York, NY

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Liu and Arnold

Every which way but Liu's

Liu was coming off a win last week at the Nike Prefontaine Classic, where the Chinese phenom ran a 2005 world leader with his time of 13.06 seconds. Johnson, however, had false started for the first time in his career in that race and was disqualified.

Saturday at the packed Icahn Stadium (4,328 attendance), the field was charged with a false start when Liu jumped out of the blocks early. When the gun went off the second time, Liu bolted to the lead, but Johnson quickly came back on him to seize the lead. Yet it was the unheralded Arnold, the 1996 NCAA champion, who then moved ahead, negotiating the final three hurdles first.

Johnson surged back off the final barrier as the 1996 Olympic gold medalist nipped Arnold with a time of 13.03 to Arnold's personal-best 13.05. Both times were faster than Liu's 2005 world leader of 13.06, run last weekend at Prefontaine. Liu was third in the race in 13.11.

Perry and Hayes

Perry makes statement in hurdles

The women's events provided a quartet of 2005 world-leading performances, with one of the most stunning coming in the Visa women's 100-meter hurdles.

Michelle Perry is rapidly changing her job description from heptathlete to hurdler. The Olympic heptathlete has been scorching in hurdle races this year, and she achieved a new level on Saturday. With Olympic gold medalist Joanna Hayes leading throughout the race, Perry came off the final hurdle trailing her fellow UCLA grad.

But Perry put on a burst in the final three strides of the race, nudging past Hayes to win in a world-leading time and huge personal best of 12.45 seconds. Perry's time is .2 seconds better than her previous best of 12.65 seconds, set in winning the Payton Jordan U.S. Open two weeks ago, and makes her the third-fastest American woman in history. The second-fastest American in history, Hayes was second in 12.47, followed by 2001 world champion Anjanette Kirkland (12.58).

Dibaba and Dibaba

Dibaba scares WR

Tirunesh Dibaba of Ethiopia, who in February broke the indoor world record during the Visa Championship Series' Reebok Boston Indoor Games (14:32.93), on Saturday ran most of the women's 5,000 meters under world outdoor record pace. The world junior record holder and Olympic bronze medalist ran the final mile of the race alone as the muggy weather conditions ultimately took their toll. Dibaba, who on June 2 turned 20, never the less finished in a 2005 world-leading time of 14:32.43. Her sister, Olympic 10,000m silver medalist Ejegayehu Dibaba, was second in 14:46.37 with fellow Ethiopian Sentayehu Ejigu third in 15:09.07.

Meseret Defar

Big women's 3,000m world leader

Ethiopians Meseret Defar and Werknesh Kidane traded the lead throughout the women's 3,000 meters, with American Shalane Flanagan running solo in third. The Olympic gold medalist at 5,000 meters, Defar took off with 200 meters to go, winning in a world-leading time of 8:33.57. Kidane was second in 8:36.39, with Kim Smith of New Zealand (8:54.32) outkicking Shalane Flanagan (8:54.43) for third. Flanagan's time was the fastest time of the year by an American and a personal best.

Jamaican Kenia Sinclair also won out in a very close race, moving away from a crowded lead pack with 120 meters left in the women's 800 to win in a world-leading time of 1:59.10. A trio of Americans followed, all surpassing the previous 2005 best by an American and all dipping under 2:00 - Treniere Clement was second in 1:59.59, Jen Toomey was third in 1:59.96, and Kameisha Bennett was fourth in 1:59.98. A first lap of 58.5 seconds helped set up the sub-2:00 pace, with Toomey leading with a lap to go.

Maurice Greene

Maurice finds Greener pastures

2000 Olympic champion and three-time world champion Maurice Greene returned to the victor's position in the Reebok men's 100-meter dash. Olympic 200-meter gold medalist Shawn Crawford took the early lead, but Greene surged in the middle stages of the race and won in 10.08. Crawford was second in 10.10, followed by Jamaican Dwight Thomas in third in 10.11.

Adam Nelson

Whoa, Nellie!

Hobbled since the indoor season with foot injuries, two-time Olympic silver medalist Adam Nelson had a big day in the 24 Hour Fitness men's shot put. His first throw of 21.25m/69 feet, 8.5 inches was easily his best throw of the year, and he improved to 21.58m/70-9.75 on his second attempt, the fourth-best throw in the world this year. World and Visa Championship leader John Godina fouled on a monstrous first throw that was at the 22-meter mark, then he sprained his ankle on his second attempt (21.40m/70-2.5). Godina, a three-time world champion, did not throw again, and Nelson fouled on his final two attempts to take the victory.

Alex Kipchirchir of Kenya sprinted to a world-leading, 2:16.94 in the Reebok men's 1000 meters, followed by Elkanah Angwenyi of Kenya (2:17.13) and indoor American record holder David Krummenacker (2:17.57).

Usain Bolt

Bolt thunders to 200m win

World junior record holder Usain Bolt of Jamaica gave the large contingent of Jamaican fans something to cheer about, running away from the field to win the men's 200 in 20.31 seconds. American Rae Edwards was second in 20.54, with Olympic silver medalist Bernard Williams third in 20.64.

The finish of the men's 3,000-meters also brought the crowd to its feet. American indoor record holder Tim Broe moved up onto leader Gebre Gebremariam's shoulder with 400 meters to go, followed in third by Kenyan Boaz Cheboiywo. Gebremariam was able to pull away in the final 100 meters, winning in 7:39.48, followed by Cheboiywo (7:39.82) and Broe (7:41.07).

Me'Lisa Barber

More winners

Me'Lisa Barber posted a U.S. leader and personal best in the women's 100 meters, winning in 11.05 seconds over Olympic Trials champion LaTasha Colander (11.11) and 2000 Olympic bronze medalist Tayna Lawrence of Jamaica (11.23).

In the women's 400, Olympic Trials champion Monique Hennagan ran her best time of the year (50.67) to win the race going away. Fellow Olympic 4x400m relay gold medalist Dee Dee Trotter also ran a personal season's-best 51.00 for second, with Novlene Williams of Jamaica third in 51.12.

American Olympic finalists Sheena Johnson and Brenda Taylor ran down Tanisha Mills in the final straightaway in the women's 400-meter hurdles. The 2004 Olympic Trials champion, Johnson finished in 55.46 seconds, with Taylor third in 55.76 and Mills third in 56.02. In the men's race, Bayano Kamani won in 48.76, followed by Danny McFarlane of Jamaica (48.91) and world championships silver medalist Joey Woody (49.60)

Olympic Trials fifth-place finisher April Steiner won the women's pole vault with a personal-best clearance of 4.50m/14-9. American record holder Kim Kreiner won the women's javelin with a throw of 57.26m/187-10, and Limei Xie of China took the women's trip jump with 14.09m/46-2.75. Bashir Ramzy won the men's long jump (7.86m/25-9.5), and Olympic Trials runner-up Brian Chaput won the men's javelin with a toss of 79.16m/259-8.

Top U.S. Performances - Reebok Grand Prix

Event Mark
1. Allen Johnson 110m Hurdles 13.03/0.8
2. Dominique Arnold 110m Hurdles 13.05/0.8
3. Adam Nelson Shot Put 21.58m
Event Mark
1. Michelle Perry 100m Hurdles 12.45/1.7
2. Joanna Hayes 100m Hurdles 12.47/1.7
3. Anjanette Kirkland 100m Hurdles 12.58/1.7

Next up in the Visa Championship Series:

June 23-26, USA Outdoor Track & Field Championships in Carson, CA. On ESPN June 25, 4:00 - 6:00 p.m. ET; on ESPN2 June 26, 5:00 - 7:00 p.m. ET.

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