Report18 Feb 2023

Hobbs and Hall go No.2 all time at US Indoor Championships in Albuquerque


Aleia Hobbs runs 6.94 to break the North American indoor 60m record in Albuquerque (© Getty Images)

Aleia Hobbs and Anna Hall stormed up to second on the respective world all-time lists for their events at the US Indoor Championships in Albuquerque, Hobbs blazing a 6.94 60m and Hall scoring a 5004-point pentathlon as they both set North American indoor records.

Hobbs was already the joint ninth-fastest women's 60m sprinter in history thanks to the 6.98 PB she ran in Fayetteville at the end of last month. But on Saturday (18) at the Convention Center in Albuquerque the 26-year-old launched herself up to No.2 all time with a performance just 0.02 shy of the 30-year-old world record.

Her 6.94 takes 0.01 off the North American indoor record set by Gail Devers, also in 1993, and saw her win the final by 0.15 ahead of world indoor bronze medallist Marybeth Sant-Price. Hobbs, who finished sixth in the world 100m final in Oregon, also ran 7.02 to win her heat.

This latest performance extends an impressive win streak for Hobbs this season, following her victories at the World Athletics Indoor Tour Gold meetings in Boston and New York earlier this month.

The men's 60m final was also held on Saturday and that was won by JT Smith in 6.53 after a 6.55 semifinal victory. Two-time world 200m champion Noah Lyles won his semifinal in 6.56 but decided not to contest the final due to a tight hip flexor.

Freddie Crittenden took the men's 60m hurdles title ahead of Robert Dunning as both athletes ran PBs of 7.49 and were separated by just four-thousandths of a second. The women's race was won by Alaysha Johnson in 7.83. Nikki Hiltz kicked to the 1500m title, holding off Sage Hurta-Klecker, 4:17.10 to 4:17.26.

Two-time world pole vault champion Sam Kendricks claimed his fourth US indoor title with a 5.91m clearance, while Olympic and world champion Katie Moon won her third US indoor gold with a best of 4.80m.

World shot put gold medallist Chase Ealey threw 19.87m to win the women's national title ahead of Maggie Ewen with 19.41m, while Joe Kovacs won his first US indoor shot put title with a 21.55m throw in the men's event. Jumps titles went to Keturah Orji in the women's triple jump (14.31m) and Will Williams in the men's long jump (8.20m PB).

Hall hits pentathlon heights

For Hall, her North American indoor record-breaking performance came on Thursday (16), and she returned to the track on Saturday to also take the 400m title in a PB of 51.03 after a 53.66 heat win on Friday.

Anna Hall crosses the 800m finish line to break the area indoor pentathlon record at the US Indoor Championships

Anna Hall crosses the 800m finish line to break the area indoor pentathlon record at the US Indoor Championships (© Kevin Morris)

With her 5004 points in the pentathlon, Hall achieved the second-best women's pentathlon score in history, just nine points shy of the world indoor record. 

The 21-year-old, who claimed world heptathlon bronze in Oregon last year, opened her pentathlon campaign with a PB of 8.04 in the 60m hurdles and went on to record outright lifetime bests of 1.91m in the high jump and 13.80m in the shot put, before an indoor PB of 6.34m in the long jump.

She rounded out her series with a 2:05.70 800m, becoming the third athlete in history to achieve 5000 points or more.

The performance puts her second on the world all-time list behind world record-holder Nataliya Dobrynska of Ukraine, who recorded 5013 points in 2012, and ahead of Britain’s Katarina Johnson-Thompson, who scored 5000 points in 2015.

Hall’s previous pentathlon best had been the 4618-point performance she achieved at the SEC Indoor Championships last year, and she improved the previous area record held by Canada’s Brianne Theisen-Eaton since 2016 by 123 points.

Finishing second to Hall in Albuquerque was Hope Bender on 4445 points.

Also on Thursday, the men’s 3000m race walk was won by Nick Christie in 11:56.67, while Miranda Melville claimed the women’s title in 13:37.69.

Price gets world indoor weight throw best

More history was made on Friday (17) when DeAnna Price broke the world indoor weight throw best, becoming the first woman to ever surpass 26 metres in the event and adding 42cm to the previous world best.

First recording 25.77m in the third round, she then improved to 26.02m in the fifth round to twice improve the world indoor weight throw best of 25.60m that had been set by Gwen Berry in 2017 and then equalled by Janeah Stewart last month.

Two world hammer gold medallists led the competition, 2019 champion Price winning ahead of 2022 world title winner Brooke Andersen with a 24.97m throw. Daniel Haugh won the men's contest with 25.44m.

Friday's action also saw Tara Davis Woodhall soar to success in the women's long jump as she leapt a world lead of 6.99m to add 6cm to her previous indoor best and win by 36cm. That jump came in the fifth round and the 23-year-old also recorded 6.94m in the second round.

Vashti Cunningham, the 2016 world indoor champion, matched her indoor PB with a 2.00m clearance to win the women's high jump, while Donald Scott took the men's triple jump title with a best of 16.96m.

Valerie Constien won an exciting battle with Whittni Morgan in the women's 3000m, Constien kicking past to win in 8:48.29 to Morgan's 8:48.42. Sam Prakel judged his race to perfection to win the men's 3000m, surging to victory in 8:12.46 ahead of Eduardo Herrera with 8:13.11.

Steven Bastien claimed the heptathlon title with 6012 points after a series that included a 7.55m long jump, 2.06m high jump and 4.95m pole vault. Will Daniels finished second with 5946 points.


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