By Gene Cherry
EUGENE, Oregon, June 10 Reuters - Xavier Carter powered past fellow American Wallace Spearmon to win a star-studded 200 metres at the Prefontaine Classic grand prix meeting on Sunday.
Carter, who beat a field that included 100m world record holder Asafa Powell and Olympic 400m champion Jeremy Wariner, clocked 20.23 seconds into a solid headwind on a misty afternoon for the narrow win.
Spearmon finished second in 20.25 with Jamaican Powell third in 20.55. American Wariner was a disappointing sixth in 20.78
Carter clocked the second fastest 200m of all-time last year (19.63 seconds) but finished fourth in a Los Angeles race last month.
Just because I wasn't winning (earlier this year), doesn't mean I had lost it,'' he said. But all this running right here really doesn’t count until you win the big one,’’ Carter said of August’s world championships.
Powell was glad to be going back to the 100m, beginning with Friday’s Golden League meeting in Oslo.
``It was a bit too cold so I didn’t try to push it,’’ Powell said.
Olympic champion and world record holder Liu Xiang of China won the 110m hurdles in 13.23 seconds after American record holder Dominique Arnold hit the sixth hurdle and ended seventh.
Liu, whose parents watched him race, said he was not affected by Arnold and was happy with the competition.
Kenyan Daniel K. Komen ran the fastest mile on American soil, clocking 3:48.28, and Craig Mottram won the infrequently contested two-mile race in an Australian record 8:03.50.
The time was the sixth fastest ever ran in the event and a national record by nine seconds, Mottram said.
Three other 2007 world-leading performances were set in the meeting at the site of the 2008 U.S. Olympic trials.
Mozambique’s Maria Mutola won the meet’s women’s 800m for the 15th consecutive time, running 1:58.33, Ethiopian Gelete Burka clocked 4:00.48 in the women’s 1,500m and Jamaican Melaine Walker won the women’s 400m hurdles in 54.14 seconds.
Olympic bronze medallist Paul Koech dominated the 3,000m steeplechase, winning in 8:08.08, and upcoming American Nick Symmonds outran Russian Olympic gold medallist Yuriy Borzakovskiy to win the men’s 800m in 1:44.54.
By Gene Cherry
EUGENE, Oregon, June 10, 2007 (AFP) - World record holder and 2004 Olympic champion Liu Xiang narrowly beat American Anwar Moore at the tape to win the 110 metre hurdles at the 2007 Prefontaine Classic track meet Sunday.
Liu finished in a time of 13.23 seconds, just nipping Moore who was second in 13.24 in front of a standing room only crowd at Hayward Field. The time was well off his world record of 12.88.
I am pleased with my time,'' said Liu, who ran a world-leading 12.92 in New York last weekend. I didn’t think I won it. The weather is cold and the track is hot for me.’’
Dominque Arnold also challenged the 23-year-old Liu as the American led the race until he hit the sixth hurdle which caused him to stumble and drop out.
Liu cleared the last hurdle then looked over at Moore before hitting the tape.
I felt them coming up on me,'' said Liu, who won China's first men's Olympic athletics gold at Athens in the 110m hurdles. The 23-year-old Shangahi surprise smashed the world record last July in 12.88 seconds at Lausanne and three of the 10 best times ever in the event. Australia's Craig Mottram ran the sixth fastest time in history to win the two mile race in eight minutes, 03.50 seconds. After the race Mottram said the world record of 7:58.61 was within his reach. The world record is reachable,’’ Mottram said.
I could have done better. I wanted to do better. There is always room for improvement.'' Ethiopia's Tariku Bekele was the runner-up in 8:04.83, which is the eighth-fastest time ever. Xavier Carter came from behind to win the 200 metre final, beating a star-studded field that included 100m world record holder Asafa Powell and defending Olympic and world 400m champ Jeremy Wariner. There were lots of great runners. I had to have my A game,’’ said Carter who clocked a 20.23.
Us 200m champion Wallace Spearmon was second in 20.25. Powell, who led the race coming off the final turn, was third in 20.55. Wariner finished well back in sixth.
Kenya’s Daniel Komen ran the fastest time in the world this year and the fastest ever on US soil to win the men’s mile in 3:48.28. Two-time Olympic medallist Bernard Lagat was second (3:50.56) in a race that saw nine runners finish under the four-minute barrier.
Former world champion Torri Edwards (11.10secs) won the women’s 100m while Eugene product Nick Symmonds delighted the home crowd by charging from fifth place off the final turn to win the 800 metres in 1:44.54.
EUGENE, Oregon (AP) - Xavier Carter surged ahead at the finish to top a talent-laden 200-metre field that included world 100-metre record holder Asafa Powell and Olympic and world 400-metre champion Jeremy Wariner on a misty, overcast Sunday at the Prefontaine Classic athletics meet.
In the mile, Kenyan Daniel Komen ran the fastest time ever in the United States, winning in 3 minutes, 48.28 seconds. Kenyan-born Bernard Lagat, now running for the United States, was second in 3:50.56 at Hayward Field.
Carter, winner of an unprecedented 100-400 double at last year’s national college championships in the United States, struggled early this year, his first without the discipline of a college programme.
“It was a wake-up call,” he said.
But he put it together during the last 15 metres to edge Wallace Spearmon, the reigning US champion and runner-up at the 2005 world championships. With the race run into a headwind, the winning time was an unspectacular 20.23 seconds, well off Walter Dix’s world-leading 19.69. Spearmon finished in 20.25.
The heralded matchup between Powell and Wariner didn’t amount to much. Powell was third at 20.55 and Wariner a distant sixth 20.78.
An enthusiastic standing room-only crowd of 13,244 watched the meet, part of the IAAF grand prix circuit.
They cheered most loudly for Maria Mutola of Mozambique, who won the Prefontaine women’s 800 for the 15th straight year, with a world-leading time of 1:58.33. Mutola, who once lived in nearby Springfield, hopes to add a 16th before she retires next year.
They saw American sensation Sanya Richards make her season debut in the 400 metres, winning in a relatively slow 50.74 seconds.
The previous fastest mile in the United States was 3:49.92 by Moroccan great Hicham El Guerrouj at Hayward Field in 2001.
Olympic gold medallist Liu Xiang ignored a crashing Dominique Arnold in the next lane to win the 110-metre hurdles in 13.23 seconds, well off his world record of 12.88.
The best race of the day might have been the 800, where American Nick Symmonds caught Olympic gold medallist Yuri Borzakovskiy over the final few metres to win in 1:44.54 seconds. Borzakovskiy was second at 1:44.71.
Olympic bronze medallist and reigning African champion Paul Koech of Kenya ran away from the competition to win the 3,000-metre steeplechase in 8:8.10 minutes, a Hayward Field record and second-fastest in the world this year. It is surpassed only by Koech’s 8:01.05, set two weeks ago in Hengelo, Netherlands.
American Sheena Johnson won the women’s 400 hurdles in 54.14 seconds, fastest in the world this year.
Gelete Burka of Ethiopia won the women’s 1,500 in 4:00.48, with Russian Yuliya Chizhenko-Fomenko at 4:02.98. They were the world’s two fastest times in this young season.