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McDaniels shines at USA Masters Championships


Tom Surber
Media Information Manager
USA Track & Field
(317) 713-4690

EUGENE, Oregon – Leonore McDaniels broke the 75-79 age-group women’s pole vault world record three times Thursday during the first day of competition at the 2003 USA National Masters Track & Field Championships at the University of Oregon’s historic Hayward Field in Eugene. America’s finest 30 and over athletes are on hand to compete for national titles through Sunday in Eugene, where seven world records and 21 U.S. age-group records were set in 2000.

McDaniels broke the W75 women’s world pole vault record with clearances of 1.80 meters/5 feet, 10.75 inches, 1.83m/6-0 and 1.90m/6-2.75. The previous world record of 1.70m/5-7 was set by Johnnye Valien in 2000. “This was not my best vaulting day,” said McDaniels. “I was a little bit hesitant on it. Maybe on another day when I’m more aggressive I can go higher. You always have to have a goal.”

A resident of Virgina Beach, Va., McDaniels captured five events at the 2003 World Masters competition last month in Puerto Rico, setting world marks in the high jump and triple jump, a U.S. mark in the long jump and also added wins in the heptathlon and pole vault.

Later in the afternoon, W60 pole vault competitor Nadine O’Connor also set the world record three times in her age division. O’Connor’s record setting marks were 2.83m/9-3.25, 2.84m/9-3.75 and 2.85m/9-4.25. O’Connor owned the previous world record of 2.63m/8-7.50 In men’s pentathlon action, Bill Carter set an M80 world record with his total of 3688 points, bettering the previous standard of 3410 points by American Dan Bulkley in 1998. Another outstanding performance was turned in Thursday by JoAnn Grissom, who has won more than 30 national titles in her career. After celebrating her 65th birthday on August 4, Grissom threw the 3-kilogram shot put 9.78 meters/32 feet, 1 inch, to establish an American record in the women’s 65-69 age-group. Grissom’s mark betters the previous record of 9.30m/30-6.25 set in 2001 by Erika Messner.

Grissom said her record performance was a surprise to her. “I haven’t really trained since February, when I starting feeling muscle spasms in my chest,” she said. “I felt okay as I walked to the ring for my first attempt, but then my knee that was operated on recently started to really hurt. I guess it turned out okay.”

In addition to her record setting performance, Grissom, a longtime USATF official, is also serving as a starter during the Championships. A resident of Indianapolis, Grissom competed as a hurdler in the 1960 Olympics in Rome and a long jumper at the 1964 Olympics in Tokyo. She intends to compete later this week in the hammer throw.

An additional U.S. record was set in the W45 shot put competition by Carol Finsrud, who broke her own record with a heave of 12.70m/41-8. Her previous AR of 12.46m/40-10.50 was set in 2002.

Other women’s shot put winners today include Jacqueline Nasca (W30-11.18/36-8.25), Laurie Jinkins (W35-10.14m/33-3.25), Monica Thornton (W40-6.64m/21-9.50), Joan Stratton (W50-11.23m/36-10.25), Lorraine Tucker (W55-9.58m/31-5.25), Cherrie Sherrard (W60-9.76m/32-0.25), Marilyn Gray (W70-4.62m/15-2), Johnnye Valien (W75-6.36m/20-10.50), Olga Kotelko (W80-5.65m/18-6.50), Betty Jarvis (W85-4.29m/14-0.75).

Men’s shot put winners were Chad Lindsay (M30-15.76m/51-8.50), Mike Curry (M35-12.17m/39-11.25), Walter Shields (M40-15.08m/49-5.75), Jim Wettenhall (M45-12.72m/41-8.75), Ron Sumers (M50-16.07m/52-8.75), Charles Roll (M55-14.13m/46-4.25), Glen Johnson (M60-14.59m/47-10.50), Gerald Vaughn (M65-13.59m/44-7), Robert Ward (M70-13.65, 44-9.50), Hal Wallace (M75-11.21m/36-9.50), William Nettles (M80m-8.92m/29-3.25), David Schlothauer (M85-6.94m/22-9.25).

In 5000 meter competition this afternoon, winners included Heather McLaughlin (W30-18:23.72), Beth Ellickson (W35-18.17.09), Jennifer Teppo (W40-17:57.82), Sharon Downing (W45-17:56.80), Angie Miyashiro (W50-19:50.90), Joni Shirley (W55-21:03.44), Shirley Matson (W60-20:04.65), Mary Harada (W65-24:34.27), June Machala (W70-24:28.69.

Men’s 5,000m winners were Chad Newton (M30-15:20.82), Damian Baldovino (M35-15:38.16), Brian Pope (M40-14:46.45), David Cannon (M45-16:15.11), Leonard Hill (M50-16:08.68), Scott Taylor (M55-17:45.13), Don Coffman (M60-18:03.41), Bill Iffrig (M65-19:27.78), Paul Heitzman (M70-21:26.24), Joe King (M75-22:30.28), John McManus (M80-27:19.69) and Les Leyland (M85-32:05.25).

Pentathlon winners today included Merry Irwin (W30-2014 points), Joy Upshaw-Margerum (W40-3575), Carla Hoppie (W45-2532), Anna Wlodarczyk (W50-4525), Phil Raschker (W55-4351), Barbara Jordan (W65-3359). Men’s winners were Rod Wilcox (M35-2627), Doug Porter (M40-2979), Michael Janusey (M45-3799), Steve Kemp (M50-3570), Robert Baker (M55-3320), Jack Karbens (M60-2486), Edward Oleata (M65-3656), James Duncan (M70-2391), William Daprano (M75-2700) and Bill Carter (M80-3688).

Additional women’s pole vault winners today included Donna Schultz (W45-2.90m/9-6.25) and defending champion Phil Raschker (W55-2.40m/7-10.50).

For more information on the 2003 USA Masters Championships, including complete results, visit

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