LRC Daegu Day 7 Non-Distance Recap: Bolt Eases Into Final, Phillips Wins 4th Worlds Gold, US Shot Putters Miss Out
Plus: Merritt Gets Baton 3rd, Saves Team USA 4 X 4; Jeter And Felix Get A Mini-Jinx
August 2, 2011
Phillips Completes Injury Comeback, Wins 4th Worlds Title Over Favored Mitchell Watt
Dwight Phillips has known all year that he had a free pass to Worlds if he could just get healthy. He clearly had a clean bill of health on Friday night, jumping 8.45m on his second attempt, a mark that would hold out over Australian sensation Mitchell Watt (8.33m) and Zimbabwe's Ngonidzashe Makusha (8.29m). Makusha, who competed for Florida State this year, won the first-ever Worlds medal for Zimbabwe.
QT1: Dwight Phillips, with 7 global medals, including 6 golds, might be the most overlooked American track and field great.
QT2: Mitchell said he was hoping to see Phillips on the cover of the Daegu Daily Programme this morning.
QT3: Zimbabwe's Ngonidzashe Makusha ran 9.89 this year for Florida State. Phillips, who has run 10.06 and spent most of this spring and summer recovering from injury, had this to say about the silver and bronze winners: "When I saw he ran 9.89 I was like, 'shit.' And when I saw he jumped 8.54 I'm like, 'shit.' I'm just happy I was able to compete my heart out and beat these guys."
QT4: Phillips jumped well on his first and second jumps in the final. He credited Carl Lewis for giving him advice to jump well early and put the pressure on the competitors.
QT5: Makusha says he plans to compete at 100m and the long jump. When asked which he likes better, he said from the medallist podium, "Right now I like long jump better."
- 2003, 2005, 2009, 2011 Worlds Gold
- 2007 Worlds Bronze
- 2004 Olympic Gold
- 2003 World Indoors Gold
Men's Long Jump Results
02 September 2011 - 19:20
Merritt Gets Baton 3rd, Blasts To 1st On Final Straight To Upend Surprise South Africans
With one leg to go, team USA's bread-and-butter 4 x 400 was looking shaky. Greg Nixon gave the US a lead after leg 1, but Bershawn Jackson and Angelo Taylor didn't look fresh after their third 400 hurdles race in three nights ended last night. With the US third behind South Africa and Jamaica, LaShawn Merritt was stuck in third behind world-class talent 400 hurdles medallist LJ van Zyl. Merritt, who chose to run patiently rather than make a big move on the outside, was boxed until fewer than 100m remained. It was on the final straight that he changed gears and changed lanes to pull away for a clear win.
Men's 4 X 400 Worlds Round-Up - Why Didn't Pistorius Run? *Updated
South Africa, whose management chose to keep 400m semifinalist Oscar Pistorius on the sideline for the final, won a silver medal over Jamaica in 3rd.
Running 1st and 4th legs, the Borlee twins and their Belgian teammates fell just short of a medal. Had the race been 10m longer, Kevin Borlee looked like he would have won bronze for Belgium. Team Kenya came through in a respectable 6th, ahead of their former national colonial bosses from Great Britain.
Getting back to Pistorius not being selected for the final round team, LetsRun.com and others inquired about the decision to not run "Blade Runner," the only South African to make the 400m semifinal round, in the final. When asked why the man who qualified for the World Championships 400m semifinals didn't make the final relay team, a South African team official said, "It was a decision by the team management." When asked a second time the man's response was "No Comment". At the post-race press conference (relevant part right here) LJ van Zyl was also asked to comment and said that team policy said the slowest split from the semis would be replaced for the final. This BBC article sums up van Zyl's comments well, as he said Oscar had the slowest split of 46.2, there is concern about his ability to double back, and that he doesn't start well out of the blocks.
The problem with all of this? Oscar did not split 46.2. The Seiko splits released were WRONG. If the S. African team relied on them, then they made the decision on incorrect data. Thus far, the best we can tell from this article on ripperbolt and this post on Charlie Francis.com, Pistorius, running out of blocks from lane 1 (which is the worst lane for Pistorius. In the final, S. Africa was in Lane 8 which is best for Pistorius since he does not run turns well), ran the 2nd slowest split on the team at 45.3 or 45.2, depending on the source. However, the leadoff leg's split will always be slower than the later legs splits because the leadoff leg is starting from scratch.
Apparently Pistorius' coach wasn't impressed with the decision to replace Oscar, rather than another first-round runner, with van Zyl. From ripperbolt: "Pistorius's coach Ampie Louw was part of the meeting in which the decision was made, but told BBC World Service he did not understand the move and that it was 'very strange.'"
From wsoctv.com we read this quote: "Team manager Magda Botha said in a statement the decision [to not run Pistorious] was based on 'factual information and knowledge' after a meeting with the athletes early Friday."
From Oscar's twitter come the following quotes (via this BBC article): Pre-race: "Haven't been included in final. Pretty guttered."
After The Race: "Well done to the SA 4x400m team. Was really hard watching, knowing I deserved to be part of it."
Because the South African officials were tight lipped on the decision, we're left to surmise that they made the decision on faulty data, or perhaps were concerned that Pistorius doesn't double back well. Others have wondered if the IAAF pressured S. Africa for Pistorius not to run. A possibility but unlikely.
We've said all week Pistorius should not be allowed to compete in the Championships. However, now that he is here competing, he should be treated like any other athlete. Hopefully, S. Africa did not leave him off the final because of bad data.
QT1: South African anchor L.J. van Zyl admitted in the press conference that he attempted to box in Merritt on the last lap saying, "It's the only way I was going to beat him." Kudos for LJ being honest. That part of the press conference is here.
Men's 4 X 400m Final Results
(Greg Nixon ; Bershawn Jackson ; Angelo Taylor ; LaShawn Merritt )
(Shane Victor ; Ofentse Mogawane ; Willem de Beer ; L.J. van Zyl )
(Allodin Fothergill ; Jermaine Gonzales ; Riker Hylton ; Leford Green )
(Maksim Dyldin ; Konstantin Svechkar ; Pavel Trenikhin ; Denis Alekseyev )
(Jonathan Borlée ; Antoine Gillet ; Nils Duerinck ; Kévin Borlée )
(Vincent Kiplangat Kosgei ; Vincent Mumo Kiilu ; Anderson Mureta Mutegi ; Mark Kiprotich Mutai )
|7||1||Great Britain & N.I.
(Richard Strachan ; Nigel Levine ; Christopher Clarke ; Martyn Rooney )
(Jonas Plass ; Kamghe Gaba ; Miguel Rigau ; Thomas Schneider )
Women's 200m Final: Veronica Campbell-Brown Bests US Trio - "Cover Jinx" Lives On
|The eventual medal-winning trio run the turn in the women's 200m final. (credit tracktownphoto.com for photo)
Veronica Campbell-Brown ran her best time of the season and outsprinted a strong American trio to add another medal to her illustrious career haul. Americans Carmelita Jeter and Allyson Felix were on the cover of this morning's daily programme in Daegu, but unlike past cover athletes, they were at least able to grab hardware, if not gold. After winning gold earlier in the week over 100m, Jeter was happy with her 2nd-place performace at her secondary distance. Felix has also had two tries at individual gold, but Amantle Montsho bested the defending world 200m champion in the 400 before tonight's 3rd-place finish in Felix's signature event. 25-year-old US champ Shalonda Solomon, whose 22.15 performance is still the best of 2011, was left out of the medals in 4th.
QT1: Veronica Campbell-Brown was asked during the press conference to name her coach, and she wouldn't give a name, saying it's not the proper time. When asked later what would be the proper time she said, "I'm still waiting to determine the proper time" (1:15 of the video here).
|Christophe Lemaitre en route to winning his men's 200m semifinal heat.
(photo via tracktownphoto.com)
Men's 200m Semi - After 4th In 100m, Christophe Lemaitre Runs Best Semi-final Time ... Bolt Jogs Last 70m For A 20.31
France's Christophe Lemaitre, the first white man to crack the 10-second barrier in the 100m, ran 20.17 for the fastest time of the day. Usain Bolt was far and away the most impressive athlete of the evening, running 20.31 while looking over both shoulders and shutting down his top gear with 70m to go in the race.
Wondering if 20.17 was unusually slow for the 200m semis, we looked back to 2009 Berlin results to see that in the semis, Usain Bolt ran 20.08 and Wallace Spearmon 20.14 as the only men faster than Lemaitre's 20.17 into a -1m/s wind. Lemaitre - with Bolt and Walter Dix (20.37 to win his heat) shaping up as the other top competitors - could be wearing a medal that he just missed earlier in the meet in the 100m.
QT1: Lemaitre thinks he may medal. "This year Bolt has not run very fast ..." said Lemaitre, and later he said, "I am very happy with my time, and think I may run faster tomorrow."
Summary Results After Semifinal
|5||2||2||801||Jaysuma Saidy Ndure
|7||3||2||198||Bruno de Barros
Americans Go 0-For-4 In Men's Shot Put - German PRs For Gold
Defending world champion Christian Cantwell came 4cm away from bronze, but he and the other 4 top American shot putters couldn't grab any medals, a first in over a decade for the event-dominant US. Before we go throwing the throwers under the bus (much easier said than done, those guys are big), it's important to point out that even Poland's 2008 Olympic champion and 2009 Worlds runner-up Tomasz Majewski finished over a meter behind the pre-competition favorite, Belarusian Andrei Mikhenevich in third. German David Storl was the surprise of the evening, as he threw a PR 21.78m to win gold over Canada's 2011 22m man Dylan Armstrong.
QT1: Storl's big performance puts him in the headlines ahead of 2-time Worlds silver medallist Deutschland countryman Ralf Bartels, who finished 10th in 20.14m.
QT2: The US had won at least one men's shot put medal in each of the past 5 indoor and outdoor World Championships and each of the last 3 Olympics.
Men's Shot Put Results