Phillips, women’s 4x100m relay squad win gold in Helsinki

08-13-2005

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HELSINKI, Finland - Dwight Phillips and Team USA's women's 4x100m relay team won gold medals, and Sandra Glover and Lashinda Demus collected 400m hurdles silver and bronze medals Saturday night at the 2005 World Outdoor Championships in Helsinki.

Phillips retains world long jump title

2004 Olympic gold medalist and 2003 world outdoor champion Dwight Phillips (Kennesaw, Ga.) wasted little time in saying hello and good night to the world's best long jumpers in winning the gold medal on his first attempt Saturday night at Olympic Stadium.

Phillips equaled his personal best of 8.60 meters/28 feet, 2.75 inches, in successfully retaining his world title. His winning jump is the best in the world this year, surpassing his leap of 8.47m/27-9.50 at Madrid on July 16. Finishing in second place was Ghana's Ignisious Gaisah, who had a best of 8.34m/27-4.50. Tommi Evila of Finland earned national hero status with his bronze medal jump of 8.25w/27-0.75.

Phillips has dominated the world since 2003, when he won the world indoor and outdoor titles. In 2004, he set his personal best in Linz, Austria, which was equaled with his winning jump Saturday night, and he easily won the Olympic gold medal with a leap of 8.59m/28-2.25.

Team USA wins 4x100m relay gold

Team USA's women's 4x100m relay team of Angela Daigle (Carson, Calif.), Muna Lee (Baton Rouge, La.), Lisa Barber (Raleigh, N.C.) and Lauryn Williams (Miami, Fla.) posted the fastest time in the world this season in winning the gold medal in 41.78 seconds.

After winning their opening round heat Friday night in what was the fastest time in the world of 42.16 seconds, Daigle, the 2005 USA Indoor Visa Championships Series women's champion, burst to a good start and executed a clean pass to Lee, the 2005 USA Outdoor 100m runner-up. Lee gave the U.S. a slight lead before passing the baton to Barber, the 2005 USA Outdoor champion.

Barber ran the curve well before handing the baton and the lead to Williams, the 2005 world outdoor 100m champion, who beat Veronica Campbell of Jamaica to the finish line.

This was the first victory for Team USA in this event since the 1997 Worlds in Athens when Chryste Gaines, Marion Jones, Inger Miller and Gail Devers won the gold.

Demus, Glover medal in women's 400m hurdles

2005 USA Outdoor champion Lashinda Demus (Columbia, S.C.) and 2005 USA third-place finisher Sandra Glover (Sugarland, Texas) each set personal bests in winning the silver and bronze medals respectively in the women's 400m final.

Demus held a slight lead going down the backstretch before she was passed prior to the final turn by Russian world record holder Yuliya Pechonkina, who held on for the win in a world-leading time of 52.90 seconds.

Demus and Glover staged a tremendous battle down the main straight for the silver medal, with Demus getting to the line first in 53.27 seconds, which improved upon her previous career best of 53.35 seconds set in winning the 2005 USA Outdoor title in June.

The 2003 World Outdoor Championships silver medalist and four-time national champion, Glover captured the bronze medal with a career best of 53.32 at the age of 36.

Glover is accustomed to top finishes at World Outdoor Championships, having placed fifth in 1999 in Seville, Spain, and eighth in 2001 in Edmonton.

With their performances in Helsinki, Demus and Glover provided Team USA with two medals in the women's 400m hurdles for the first time since Kim Batten (gold) and Tonja Buford (silver) at the 1995 Worlds in Gothenburg.

Sell leads Team USA to fourth place in World Cup Marathon

Team USA's marathoners finished an unexpected fourth in the World Marathon Cup, accumulating a time of 6 hours, 53 minutes, 55 seconds, missing a team medal by 1:41.

Team USA's efforts were led by Brian Sell (Rochester, Mich.), who crossed the line ninth in 2:13:27, the fastest ever by an American at a World Outdoor Championship. He was followed by his training partner Clint Verran (Rochester Mich.), who finished 22nd in 2:17:42.

Rounding out the American scorers was Jason Lehmkuhle (St. Paul, Minn.), who finished 40th in 2:22:46.

Sell's ninth place finish is the highest individual placing in the world championships since 1995 when Steve Plasencia finished tenth in 2:16:56.

Peter Gilmore (San Mateo, Calif.) placed 51st in 2:25:17, and Chad Johnson (Rochester Hills, Mich.) finished 59th in 2:30:45.

Team USA's fourth place finish is the highest in the Marathon World Cup since a sixth place finish in 1999.

Japan, led by individual bronze medalist Tsuyoshi Ogata, won the World Cup with a cumulative time of 6:38:39, with Kenya second in 6:46:38 and Ethiopia capturing bronze in 6:52:14.

The individual victory went to Jaouad Gharib of Morocco, winning his second straight title in 2:10:10, with Tanzania's Christopher Isegwe finishing second in 2:10:21.

Team USA 4x400m men's relay squad advances to final

Team USA men's 4x400m relay team of Miles Smith (Cape Girardeau, Mo.), Derrick Brew (Springs, Texas), LaShawn Merritt (Portsmouth, Va.) and Darold Williamson (Waco, Texas) had little trouble in advancing to Sunday's final by winning their qualifying heat in 3 minutes, 00.48 seconds.

The sixth-place finisher at the 2005 USA Outdoor championships, Smith ran the opening leg in 44.81 seconds, before handing the baton to Brew, the 2005 Olympic bronze medalist and 4x400m relay gold medalist, who ran a 44.94 split, which gave Team USA the lead for good.

The 2004 world junior champion, Merritt stretched the U.S. lead to 10 meters in running the third leg with a split of 45.41 seconds. Williamson, who ran anchor for Team USA's 2004 Olympic 4x400m gold medal winning squad, posted a final leg split of 45.32 as Team USA finished well ahead of runners-up Trinidad and Tobago. The final will take place Sunday night.

Team USA women's 4x400m relay disqualified

Team USA's women's 4x400m relay squad of Suziann Reid (Cary, N.C.), Monique Hennagan (Stockbridge, Ga.), Moushaumi Robinson (Cary, N.C.) and Monique Henderson (Bonita, Calif.) dominated the field in its opening round heat, finishing first in 3 minutes, 23.38 seconds.

Following the race the U.S. squad was disqualified for multiple lane infractions under IAAF Rule 163.3. A Team USA appeal was denied.

Team USA Medal TallyAs of August 13Gold (13)Justin Gatlin (Raleigh, N.C.), M100, 9.88Justin Gatlin (Raleigh, N.C.), M200, 20.04Jeremy Wariner (Grand Prairie, Tex.), M400, 43.93Bershawn Jackson (Raleigh, N.C.), M400mH, 47.30Adam Nelson (Athens, Ga.), MSP, 21.73m/71-3.50Bryan Clay (Azusa, Calif.), MDecathlon, 8,732 pointsDwight Phillips (Kennesaw, Ga.), MLJ, 8.60m/28-2.75Walter Davis (Baton Rouge, La.), MTJ, 17.57m/57-7.75Lauryn Williams (Miami, Fla.), W100, 10.93Allyson Felix (Santa Clarita, Calif.), W200, 22.16Michelle Perry (Los Angeles), W100H, 12.66Tianna Madison (Knoxville, Tenn.), WLJ, 6.89m/22-7.25W4x100m relay - Angela Daigle (Carson, Calif.), Muna Lee (Baton Rouge,La.), Lisa Barber (Raleigh, N.C.), Lauryn Williams (Miami, Fla.), 41.78Silver (8)Wallace Spearmon (Fayetteville, Ark.), M200, 20.20Andrew Rock (LaCrosse, Wis.), M400, 44.35James Carter (Hampton, Va.), M400H, 47.43Brad Walker (Seattle, Wash.), MPV, 5.75m/18-10.75Rachelle Boone-Smith (Norfolk, Va.), 22.31Sanya Richards (Austin, Texas), W400, 49.74Lashinda Demus (Columbia, S.C.), W400H, 53.27Chaunte Howard (Atlanta), WHJ, 2.0m/6-6.75Bronze (3)John Capel (Gainesville, Fla.), M200, 20.31Allen Johnson (Irmo, S.C.), M110H, 13.10Sandra Glover (Sugarland, Texas), W400H, 53.32

For more information on Team USA at the 2005 World Outdoor Track & Field Championships, visit www.usatf.org.