Gay makes more history in AT&T men’s 200m, Webb breaks meet record

06-24-2007

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Jill Geer
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USA Track & Field
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INDIANAPOLIS - Undeterred by a soggy track and slight headwind, Tyson Gay cemented his status as the world's dominant sprinter by winning the AT&T men's 200 meters in the second-fastest time in history Sunday at AT&T USA Outdoor Track & Field Championships. In addition to two national titles, Gay came away from the meet with the men's Visa Championship as the top male performer of the Visa Championship Series, while Tiffany Williams was women's Visa Champion.

The final meet of the 2007 Visa Championship Series, the AT&T USA Outdoor Track & Field Championships serves as the Team USA selection competition for the 2007 IAAF World Outdoor Championships in Osaka.

Already having won the 100m on Friday night in a meet-record 9.84, Gay put on another impressive display Sunday in the 200. Coming off the curve, he held a huge lead and continued to win in 19.62 seconds (0.3 meters-per-second headwind), the #2 time ever, behind only Michael Johnson's world record of 19.32 from the 1996 Olympics. It breaks Johnson's meet record of 19.66 set in 1996, which at the time was a world record.

World Championships silver medalist and defending U.S. champion Wallace Spearmon, Gay's training partner, began to close in the final meters but had too much distance to make up. Spearmon ended up second in 19.89, with Rodney Martin third in 20.18 and Jeremy Wariner fourth in 20.35.

Webb breaks Scott's meet record

Alan Webb has long spoke about wanting to break Steve Scott's records, and he got one of them Sunday in a thrilling Nike men's 1,500m. Webb ran in the style that suits him best, taking the lead and pushing the pace. Webb towed the pack through quick splits of 57.56 for 400m and 1:56.23 for 800, when defending champion Bernard Lagat took the lead.

Webb and company stayed right with Lagat, however, with Said Ahmed, Chris Lukezic and Leonel Manzano also tailing the leader. Lagat passed 1,200 in 2:53.8 as the race continued to escalate. Coming off the final curve, Lagat, Webb, Lukezic and Manzano all were in the running, and it came down to a final sprint.

As he did to win the Reebok Grand Prix, Webb displayed a sizzling kick in the last 30 meters to win in 3:34.82, breaking Steve Scott's meet record of 3:34.92 set in 1982 and winning his third career national title. The University of Texas' Manzano passed Lagat to place second in 3:35.29, with Lagat, who on Friday won the 5,000, placing third in 3:35.55. It was the fastest third-place time in USA Championship history.

Williams blazes world leader in women's 400H

Two years after giving birth to a daughter, Tiffany Williams put her name atop the 2007 women's 400m hurdles world list, leading the race from early on and winning in a personal-best time of 53.28. 2004 Olympic Trials champion Sheena Johnson closed quickly and nearly caught Williams, finishing second in 53.29. Nicole Leach of UCLA passed Sandra Glover to place third in 54.49. Williams' performance was worth 1,227 points using IAAF scoring tables and put her in first for the women's Visa Championship. Gay had led the race for the men's Visa Championship since the first meet and maintained his lead throughout the season.

Trammell wins long-awaited 110 hurdles title

Among the most decorated American hurdlers in history, with two Olympic silver medals and a pair of World Championships silvers as well, Terrence Trammell won his first career U.S. crown in the 110m hurdles in 13.08 (+0.5), leading from start to finish. American record holder Dominique Arnold was second in 13.17, with David Oliver third in 13.18.

Felix flies in Visa women's 200

Overcoming a slow start, world champion Allyson Felix showed her gold-medal form in the Visa women's 200 meters. Running in lane 4, Felix lagged behind Sanya Richards in lane 5 as Richards came back from her fourth-place finish in Saturday's AT&T women's 400.

In Sunday's 200, Felix came up on Richards' left shoulder, then went on to win in 22.34 seconds (+0.4 mps) with Richards second in 22.43. USA 100m champion Torri Edwards was third in 22.55, with 2004 Olympian LaShauntea Moore fourth in 22.58. With Felix enjoying a bye into the World Championships as defending champion, Moore will join the U.S. delegation.

Middle-distance excitement

Khadevis Robinson put on a brilliant display in the Tyson men's 800 meters, leading from start to finish as is his custom and finishing in 1:44.37 to win his fourth national title. It is the fastest time by an American this year and second-fastest in the world. USA indoor champion Nick Symmonds was second in 1:45.17, with Duane Solomon of USC third in 1:45.69.

The men's steeplechase was as exciting as its outcome was uncertain. Max King took early leading duties as the packs strung out closely behind him. American record holder Dan Lincoln, currently a full-time medical student, sprinted to the lead with 600m to go, but BYU grad and 2007 U.S. leader Joshua McAdams passed him with 250m to go. The race for second and third was where the suspense was. In a bold move, Aaron Aguayo shifted from running three abreast to the inside lane, sprinting past Lincoln with 20m to go along with Thomas Brooks to take second (8:27.01) and third (8:27.34) as McAdams won his first title in 8:24.46. Anthony Famiglietti finished fourth (8:27.64) with a spent Lincoln fifth (8:28.32).

The women's 800 was even closer. After high schooler Chanelle Price led the field through a 57.90 400m split, veterans took over. Alysia Johnson of Cal, the NCAA indoor and outdoor champion, then assumed leading duties, with three-time USA champion Hazel Clark on her shoulder. Clark moved past Johnson with 30 meters to go, but Johnson surged back to win as both women collapsed across the finish line, Johnson stopping the clock in 1:59.47 and Clark in 1:59.60. Alice Schmidt nearly caught Clark, placing third in 1:59.63.

Stuczynski comes through in Gill women's pole vault

Slick conditions and swirling winds played havoc with the jumping events, but American record holder Jenn Stuczynski still was able to come out on top in the Gill women's pole vault, clearing 4.45m/14-7.25. Nikole McEwen was second at the same height, clearing on her second attempt, with Lacy Janson third at 4.35m/14-3.25.

The Gill men's high jump was more unpredictable. NCAA Division II champion Jim Dilling of Minnesota-Mankato was a surprise winner at a height of 2.27m/7-5.25. Two-time national champion Jamie Nieto tied for second with Adam Shunk as both men had no misses up to and including clearances at 2.24m/7-4.25.

More winners

2005 USA champion Kristin Heaston won her second national title in the women's shot put with a personal-best throw of 18.74m/61-5.75. Jillian Camarena was second with 18.50m/60-8.5, and Sarah Stevens third in 18.02m/59-1.5.

USA indoor men's triple jump champion Aarik Wilson added the outdoor title to his career highlights, jumping 17.06m/55-11.75 (+1.7mps). Lawrence Willis was second with 16.97m/55-8.25, and 2004 Olympian Kenta Bell was third with 16.87m/55-4.25. Defending world champion Walter Davis has a bye into the World Championships.

NCAA runner-up Michael Robertson of Stanford was a surprise winner in the men's discus with a best throw of 64.04m/210-1.Ian Waltz was second with 63.60m/208-8, Jarred Rome was third with 63.56m/208-6.

In early-morning action, Teresa Vaill won her third national title int eh women's 20 km race walk in 1:37.28.70, with Jolene Mooresecond (1:39:24.14) and SamCohen third (1:40:53.22). Inthe lone junior event of the day, Pan Am Race Walk Cup bronze medalist Lauren Forgues of Maine Racewalkers easily won the women's 10,000m race walk in 51:49.96. Le'erin Voss was second in 53:46.42

Carter knee drama

Xavier Carter, who heading into the meet was the second-fastest man in history over 200 meters, went down with a right leg injury approximately 150 meters into the first race of the day, the men's 200m semifinals. Carter's agent, Mark Block, said a medical evaluation revealed that Carter's right knee had dislocated, popping out during the race but then popping back in. No further damage was seen, but Carter will continue to be evaluated.

Big attendance

Despite damp conditions the final two days, an impressive total of 33,540 fans attended the 2007 AT&T USA Outdoor Track & Field Championships.

For complete results and athlete quotes, visit www.usatf.org