Going the distance at AT&T USA Outdoor Championships


Vicky Oddi
Communications Coordinator
USA Track & Field

INDIANAPOLIS - Competition will be fierce as America's re-emergent distance runners compete next week at the 2006 AT&T USA Outdoor Track & Field Championships in Indianapolis.

The Championships are the final stop of USATF's 2006 Visa Championships Series, and take place June 21-25 at the IU Michael A. Carroll Track & Soccer Stadium on the campus of IUPUI in downtown Indianapolis. The event serves as the selection meet for the IAAF World Cup of Athletics, which will take place later that summer. The 2006 USA Outdoor Junior Championships take place concurrently with the Outdoor Championships, as the selection meet for the 2006 World Junior Championships in Beijing, China.

The 2006 AT&T USA Outdoor Championships will be televised live on ESPN2 from 6-8 p.m. on Saturday, June 24, and from 5-7 p.m. on Sunday, June 25. All times are Eastern.

Distance Drama

The Hershey's men's 800 meters will see defending U.S. champion and 2006 U.S. leader Khadevis Robinson pitted against 2003 World Indoor champion David Krummenacker and 2004 Olympian Jonathan Johnson.

The Nike men's 1,500 meters is wide open. 2006 U.S. Indoor 1,500 meter champion and 2005 U.S. Outdoor runner-up Chris Lukezic is looking for a rematch with reigning U.S. Outdoor champion Alan Webb. Webb successfully held off Lukezic in the sprint to the finish last year, running 3 minutes 41.97 seconds to Lukezic's 3:42.06. But don't count out 2004 Olympian Charlie Gruber and 2003 U.S. Outdoor champion Jason Lunn.

The resurgent Adam Goucher will look for his third U.S. title in the Nike men's 5,000 meters. Goucher's 2006 season got off to a rousing start with his wins in the 4 km at the USA Cross Country Championships and the 3,000 meters at the AT&T USA Indoor Championships, and he turned in a blistering 2-mile time of 8:12.73 at the Nike Prefontaine Classic. Two-time U.S. 10,000m champion Abdi Abdirahman is slated todouble in the 5,000 and 10,000 meter races. Abdirahman's fiercest competition in the Gleukos men's 10,000m looks to be the Olympic marathon silver medalist, American record holder and three-time U.S. champion at 10,000m, Meb Keflezighi. Also look for a challenge from 2005 U.S. Outdoor runner-up Ian Dobson.

2004 Olympian Dan Lincoln will look for the three-peat in the Finish Line men's 3,000 meter steeple chase. After winning the U.S. title in 2004 and 2005, Lincoln is the #1 ranked steeple chaser in the U.S. by Track and Field News.

Two-time Olympian Hazel Clark will defend her title in the Tyson women's 800 meters against training partner and 2005 U.S. Outdoor runner-up Kameisha Bennett. In the Sport Court women's 1,500 meters, reigning U.S. Outdoor and Indoor champion Treniere Clement will face off against 2006 U.S. Indoor runner-up and two-time NCAA champion Tiffany McWilliams. 2004 Olympic Trials champion Carrie Tollefson will also challenge, with a possible double in the 5,000m.

2005 U.S. Outdoor runner-up and three-time NCAA champion Lauren Fleshman will vie for the crown in the Tyson women's 5,000 meters. She will face stiff competition from two-time Olympian Amy Rudolph and 2005 U.S. 10,000m runner-up Blake Russell. In the Sport Court women's 3,000 meter steeplechase, 2005 U.S. Outdoor runner-up Lisa Galaviz will look to challenge American record holder Briana Shook and current U.S. leader Carrie Messner.

Defending U.S. champion Katie McGregor will face a strong challenge from two-time Olympian Jen Rhines in the Gleukos women's 10,000m. Two-time Olympian and three-time U.S. champion Marla Runyan, who showed she was well on her way back into racing form with a personal best 32:11.92 for 10,000m at the Oregon Invitational in April, will also challenge for the title.

For more information on the 2006 AT&T USA Outdoor Championships and USATF's Visa Championship Series, visit www.usatf.org.