News01 May 2011

Three World leads highlight Penn Relays


Another 4x400m Relay victory for Sanya Richards-Ross at Penn (© Kirby Lee)

Philadelphia, USAA USA women's quartet produced a world-leading and meet record 42.28 in the 4x100m Relay to highlight the USA vs. The World competition at the 117th Penn Relays at the University of Pennsylvania’s Franklin Field which concluded on Saturday (30 April).

World leading performances were also posted by the U.S. women in the 4x400m relay at 3:22.92 and by the Jamaican men in the 4x100 Relay at 38.33 before a crowd of 48,836.
One-two finishes for US women in 4x100m and 4x400m Relays
The United States women turned in 1-2 finishes in both the 4x100m and 4x400m relays. In the former, a team of Lauryn Williams, Allyson Felix, Marshevet Myers and Carmelita Jeter ran 42.28 to break the meet record of 42.33 set by the USA in 2000.

A second quartet of Gloria Asumnu, Miki Barber, Bianca Knight, Alex Anderson finished second in 42.64.  The Jamaican team anchored by World and Olympic champion Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce was third in 42.74.

“It doesn’t matter how many fast people you have on a relay, if you can’t get the stick around you’re not going to break any records,” Jeter said. “And for this to be our first time running the 4x100 together, it definitely showed that we can handle each other well.”

In the 4x400m Relay, two U.S. teams produced the top two times in the World this season. A team of Debbie Dunn, Allyson Felix, Natasha Hastings and Sanya Richards-Ross edged a squad of Dee Dee Trotter, Francena McCoroy, Keshia Baker and Monica Hargrove, 3:22.92 to 3:23.17.

McCoroy and Felix turned in the top two splits of 49.8 and 50.3 on the second leg as the Americans pulled away from the field.

Jamaica defends men's 4x100m title
There was no repeat appearance by Usain Bolt in the 4x100m Relay but the Jamaicans still had enough to beat the U.S., 38.33 to 38.46, with a team of Asafa Powell, Michael Frater, Nesta Carter and Steve Mullings.

Carter took command on the third leg with Mullings holding off American Michael Rodgers for the victory.

Powell ran on an uncustomary lead-off position after taking heed of a long-time suggestion made  by Frater.  Jamaica’s relay lineup created an intriguing opening leg matchup with 2004 Olympic champion Justin Gatlin returning to action at Franklin Field. His squad finished third in 38.66.

“Over the years (Frater) has been telling me that if I lead off, it will be a totally different race,” Powell said. “I’ve always run the anchor leg, I just wanted to try something new.”

In the 4x400m Relay, a team of Quentin Summers, Jamal Torrence, Bershawn Jackson and Angelo Taylor won in 3:02.40. The top two times of the meet in the 4x400m Relay were produced in Championship of America race by Texas A&M and LSU, which ran 3:01.73 and 3:02.33.

Texas A&M, which was led by splits of 44.86 on the third leg by Tabarie Henry and 44.98 on the anchor by Demetrius Pinder, ran a world-leading 3:00.45 at the Texas Relays on 9 April.
Jamaica wins fourth consecutive women's Sprint Medley

Kenia Sinclair anchored the Jamaica women’s Sprint Medley Relay with a 1:57.06 split on the 800m leg to seal the win in 3:34.64 – eighth hundredths off the World best set by Jamaica at the 2009 Penn Relays with Sinclair also on the anchor.

The Jamaicans took the lead on a 51.3 third 400m leg by 2008 Olympic 400m Hurdles champion Melaine Walker after opening 200m legs by Simone Facey and Kerron Stewart to win for the fourth consecutive year.

In the men's Distance Medley Relay, Morocco won its first USA vs. The World title in 9:17.48 powered by a 3:53.09 final carry by Amine Laalou to win a homestretch duel with Australia’s Jeff Riseley and Russell Brown of the United States.  Australia was second in 9:17.48 and the U.S. was third in 9:18.09.
Other Highlights
Virginia, buoyed by a 1:46.0 anchor by Robby Andrews, clocked 7:12.15 to win the Championship of America 4 x 800m Relay in 7:12.15 for the No. 2 mark in meet history and fastest since 1985. Andrews was selected as the College Athlete of the Meet for Relay Events.

Omo Osaghae of Texas Tech was named the College Athlete of the Meet for Individual events after winning the 110m Hurdles in 13.35 for the No. 2 ever at Penn. Slovenia's Tina Sutej of Arkansas won the women’s honor after setting a meet record of 4.45m in the women's Pole Vault.

Jillian King, who anchored the Boston College women to a win in the 4x1500m Relay for the Eagles first women’s win at Penn, was named the College Athlete of the Meet for Relay Events.

Ristananna Tracey of Jamaica’s Edwin Allen earned High School Girls Athlete of Meet for Relay Events. Tracey ran a 2:03.17 anchor in the 4x800m Relay for the fastest split in meet history and a 8:39.22 clocking for the No. 2 time.  She also turned in the fastest split of 52.2 in the 4 x 400m Relay.

Myles Andrews of Long Beach Poly (Calif.) was the High School Boys Athlete of the Meet for Relay Events. Andrews ran a 1:49.54 leg for Poly’s victorious 4x800m Relay that won in 7:31.69 for the No. 3 time at Penn and U.S. High School history.

Haley Pierce of Tatnall (Wilmington, Delaware) and Myles Andrews of Long Beach Poly (CA) were the girls and boys Athlete of the Meet for Individual Events.  Pierce won the girls 3,000m in 9:16.35 for the No. 2 time at Penn.

Travis Smikle (Calabar, Jamaica), who won the Discus Throw with a meet record of 69.55m, was the boys High School Athlete of the Meet for Individual Events.

Saturday’s total of 48,836 brought the three-day attendance total to 110,087. Princeton won the Championship of America 4 X Mile relay for the first victory at Penn in any event since 1940.
Kirby Lee for the IAAF

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