Webb, Lagat lead distance crew into IAAF World Outdoor Championships


Jared Slinde
Communications Intern
USA Track & Field

INDIANAPOLIS - Alan Webb and Bernard Lagat will bolster a strong Team USA distance running contingent at the 2007 IAAF World Outdoor Track & Field Championships August 25-September 2 in Osaka, Japan.

Webb will compete in the 1,500 meter run, while Lagat will toe the line in the 1,500m and 5,000m in Osaka. All told, Team USA's men's distance corps features three American record holders in Lagat (outdoor 1,500m, indoor 1,500m, mile, 3,000m), Webb (mile) and Matt Tegenkamp (2-mile). Tegenkamp will compete in the 5,000m.

Webb is looking for a World medal in a season that has already seen him set the American mile record (4:46.91). He currently owns the top times in the world this year in the 1,500m (3:30.54) and the mile, and holds the second-fastest time in the 800m (1:43.50).

On July 21 at the Atletiek Vlaanderen meet in Brasschaa, Belgium, Webb ran 3:46.91 in breaking the American mile record previously held by National Track & Field Hall of Fame member Steve Scott, who ran 3:47.69 in 1982. Webb's time was good enough for eighth-fastest in history. Webb's 800m time of 1:43.50 this season was almost two full seconds better than his personal best.

Lagat, the 2004 Olympic silver medalist and 2000 Olympic bronze medalist in the 1,500m, will make his World Outdoor debut for Team USA. A native of Kenya, Lagat became a U.S. citizen in August, 2004, and is now eligible to represent the U.S. three years later.

Team USA has had two men in a World Outdoor 1,500m final only once, in 1987, with Jim Spivey took the bronze and Steve Scott placed 12th. Twenty years later, Americans will be looking for two medals in the classic middle-distance race.

Team USA's women's distance aces feature a pair of American record holders in Shalane Flanagan in the 5,000m and Deena Kastor in the 10,000m. After breaking the indoor American record in the 3,000 this winter, Flanagan ran 14:44.80 for 5,000m in April at Mt. SAC for her second AR of the year,while Kastor ran 30:50.32 to break the record in the longer event in 2002.

Fans can watch Team USA on national television broadcasts on NBC and Versus, or online via live, daily webcast at www.wcsn.com. For complete TV listings, visit http://www.usatf.org/events/2007/IAAFWorldOutdoorChampionships/TVSchedule.asp.

For more information on Team USA at the World Outdoor Championships, visit www.usatf.org/events/2007/IAAFWorldOutdoorChampionships/