30 May 2009

New York, New York

Reebok Grand Prix! Can't believe it's already here again.

It was at this meet last year that the now world-famous Usain Bolt broke his first 100m world record, and effectively turned the athletics world on its head.

Of particular interest this year is the women's 5000m field. It features longtime favourite Tirunesh Dibaba, and her little sister Genzebe, who in March this year won her first senior world title in cross-country.

Of more local interest is Kim Smith, the Providence-based Kiwi who made the Olympic final last year in Beijing and also recorded one of the world's quickest 10,000m times for the year.
Missing from the race however is one of my favourites, Kara Goucher. Boo. The 5000m is due to kick off at 5:13pm New York time on Saturday.

The men's event features Bernard Lagat, the Kenyan-turned-American mile prodigy whose ability ranges from the 1500m to the occasional marathon. The race is assembled, as you'd expect, mostly of Kenyans and Ethiopians, with the occasional American thrown in for good measure, and even includes the Mexican Juan Luis Barrios, and Briton Nick McCormick. No New Zealanders here, which is hardly surprising due to our lack of any decent distance runners.

The 1500m for both men and women looks yawn-worthy on paper, with no notable names outside Vivian Cheruiyot and Mestawot Tadesse.

Jeremy Wariner, the 2004 Olympic 400m champion is turning out for the 200m race, along with Tyson Gay, Wallace Spearmon, and old favourite of mine, Xavier Carter. The 100m looks less exciting, with Asafa Powell, but no Bolt.

The only other event I'll be mildly interested in is the women's pole vault, featuring 2000 Olympic champion Stacy Dragila. With the absence of Isinbayeva, who tends to break the world record each season to secure her million-dollar payout, the event promises less excitement than it usually garners.

For Reebok Grand Prix event schedule and results, visit here.

No comments:

Post a Comment