|100TH RUNNING OF DRAKE RELAYS
Saturday, April 25, 2009 - Quotes
Webb, winner, invitational mile, 4:00.61. Set Drake Relays record
(3.51.71) in 2007. American record holder. Three time U.S. outdoor
champion in 1500
On his time
``I think everybody wanted to go a
little bit faster. It was chilly, cold, windy, just ended being one of
those days where competing was the goal, just trying to win the race.
This is sort of my weakness sometimes, start expecting something and
having it be totally not what I expect and still do well. That's why
I'm definitely pleased with this. I think I have not done well in these
circumstances in the past, so it's definitely a positive step, even I
would have liked to run a little faster.''
On the race
tried to have a preemptive strike. I was out in front and I wanted to
not let anybody catch me off guard. I wanted to make my own move
without anybody coming up on me. It worked out.''
He rubbed his arms after finishing as if shivering and mouthed, ``It's cold.''
was kind of just joking around and everybody was looking at me. That's
definitely one of the draws to Drake, the people are watching each race
intently to be able to pick up on some small little gesture like that.''
Generally slow pace in the race
kind of got off on a slow rhythm and couldn't get it going. Even the
first 200, I could kind of tell, ah, we're only 29 (seconds), it's not
going to be super fast. But I still crossed the finish line first.''
On maturing mentally as a runner
was such a victory. I think in the past I might have got caught up in
oh my gosh, I ran 3:51 here two years ago. Am I going to do that again?
Just taking a step back and what is my goal and where does this fit
into my season. This is only my second race outdoors. It's a big meet,
you want to run well, just do the best you can and feel like I did
that. And when you do that good comes from that. This race was much
more competitive in terms of the depth of it than it was two years ago.
It still was a great race. It's just sort of reminding yourself, hey,
this is what it is, it's a big meet, but it's also early. I'm still
Jeremy Wariner, winner, men's invitational 400,
45.06. Won the race by more than a full second. Three Olympic gold
medals, one silver. No. 1 in world in 400 from 2004-07.
On the weather
was cold, but I've run in worse weather than this. Two years ago I ran
in Poland, it was probably about 44 degrees with cold rain. It was
colder than this to me. It's my first 400. I wanted to go under 45.
Came real close, but I was happy with the way I ran. I got out fine and
from the 200 to the finish I worked hard. So I was impressed with the
way I ran today."
On what he looks for early in the season
my main goal is to work on things, get ready, gear up and as the season
goes on I get out of that role and start going for the wins. I want to
go out there and work on things, but at the same time, I do want to
win. I don't want to go out there and get second. But my main thing is
to go out there and work on some things like it's practice."
Easing up at the end
I did slow down, it wasn't on purpose. With the cold weather, my legs
were getting tight toward the end. I didn't want to pull anything this
early in the season. I might have taken it a little easy down the home
stretch, but I was really impressed with the way I ran today.''
On returning to Drake after going to Penn
year I went to Penn Relays just to see what it was like. I kind of
missed Drake. I wanted to come back this year and run for the fans. The
fans here are always supportive of every athlete no matter who they
are. They really get into the meet.''
unattached, third women's invitational 100 hurdles, 12.88. Five-time
Drake Relays individual winner. Two-time world champion. 2004 Olympian
from Canadian. Ran on world-record setting shuttle hurdle relay for
Illinois at Drake Relays in 2001.
On Lolo Jones' stopping late in the race
guess outside maybe the pole vault, it's probably one of the most
treacherous races in track and field. You're at the mercy of the
conditions and then you're obviously at the mercy of the woman beside
you. Someone hits you with their arm, knocks the hurdle into your lane,
you're done with your race as well.''
How has Lolo Jones handled her Beijing disappointment
to say she's handled it extremely well. I was part of the media in
Beijing covering the Olympics and when I saw it happen, the way she
handled it was just her true self. We've competed against each other
for years and years. We're competitive first and foremost, but from a
distance she's just a great person. A lot of people in that situation
wouldn't have shown the same grace she did that day.''
How does this help winner Tiffany Ofili
think it's definitely a confidence booster. She's probably extremely
hungry. I remember I was there not too long ago, just hungry and
wanting to turn heads. Kudos to her. She's the champion of the day.''
Coming back to the Drake Relays
been four years. This is only my second race (since her injury in 2008)
and to finish at the top of the field just shows that I'm competitive.
I still have all the cups from the world record setting relay.''
Ofili, senior, Michigan, winner women's invitational 100 hurdles,
12.82. Only collegian in the field. 2008 NCAA indoor and outdoor
champion, 2009 NCAA indoor champion. Drake Relays university-college
100 hurdles champion last year.
Were you leading when Lolo Jones pulled up
``I wasn't sure. I was just concentrating on my lane and keeping my composure throughout the race.''
How did you keep your composure
kind of comes along with the race. It comes with experience. I just
learned how to focus on my lane and not worry about what's going on to
the left and the right of me.''
What does winning this race mean
excited. I'm happy with the win. It hopefully is going to give me some
momentum for the rest of my season so I can just finish up my college
career to the best of my ability.''
Lolo Jones, pulled
up at eighth hurdle and did not finish. Had won the last four
invitational 100 hurdles races at Drake. Des Moines native. Named one
of the Relays Athletes of the Century for the meet's 100th running.
10 days my leg was slightly inflamed and so I backed off on the
workouts so I could get ready for Drake Relays. I thought I could pull
off a win or just finish the race, but sadly I couldn't. If this would
have been any other race, it's cold, it's raining, I would have pulled
out. But due to the fact this is my hometown, I grew up a couple of
blocks away from the Drake Stadium, I just felt it was too important
for me to pull out. Maybe I should have. It definitely would have been
better for me in the long run because there's a World Championships
this year. But like I said, I have friends and family in the stands and
it was very important for me to run today, very."
Feel it injured before the hurdle
definitely. That's why I want to emphasize. It wasn't me hitting a
hurdle like in the Olympics. It's like a tennis ball that moved down my
hamstring and I felt the pop. With that, I pulled up. You'll see in the
video I popped straight up and that's why I hit the hurdle. It wasn't
the simple fact that I was in the groove running and hit the hurdle. I
definitely could not get over that hurdle. My leg would just not go
over that hurdle.
How bad is it
as bad as thought. I can walk a little a bit on it. I'm not on
crutches, so that's good. We don't know everything right now because I
have to get X-rays. We definitely think it's just a slight tear. I
think my leg protected itself in the race. It kind of cramped up and
saved me from getting an all-around tear.''
On all her activities during the week
was definitely not the best for someone with an injury. Everyone knows
the way to get rid of an injury is to rehab and rest. And when I'm
doing a lot of things, it definitely was taking a toll on my body. It's
also important for me to give back to the community and kids. Stuff
like that gives me energy. I thank God I'm not severely injured. I'm
not going to be out the rest of the season for show.''
``We had plans for Jamaica and Doha, but now everything has got to be shifted.''
On difference from Bejing
the slow-mo, you definitely see me pop straight up in the air. That's
why I hit the hurdle. In the Olympics I hit the hurdle coming down. It
was clearly technical. This was definitely my body saying, no, the next
gear is not possible.''
Liz Wanless, New York AC,
winner, Women's Invitational Shot Put, Drake Relays record 60-1
(18.31M) (Old Record: 58-3, Terri Steer, Nike, 2002). Wanless is ranked
fourth in the U.S. and won among a field that featured the top five
ranked throwers in the U.S.
On how the weather played to her advantage:
"I couldn't have been happier with the weather. This is
Rocky weather. This is my favorite way to compete - dog eat dog - and
it couldn't have been more fun. Like I said, I really was excited when
I heard it was raining. This is what I practice in every day in Muncie,
Ind. It was a dog eat dog win and it was fun to win."
On her winning throw, which was her second on the day:
big thing for me was keeping my upper body loose and letting my hips
get ahead and I felt a nice rhythm. I felt smooth. So, I think keeping
my upper body loose, that was what did it for me today."
On what it means to win a competition against the top five throwers in the nation:
amazing (to win). Jill (Camarena) and Michelle (Carter) made the finals
of the Olympic Games. I didn't even make the team. So to compete with
them and win is fabulous."
Kristin Heaston, Nike, second, Women's Invitational Shot Put, 57-7 (17.55M). Heston is ranked third in the U.S.
On competing with the top five throwers in the nation:
awesome. I mean, it was a rough competition day for all of us and a
little cold, but there's no other place that has done this for the
female throwers like Drake has. So we're all just so happy to be here
and be a part of this. And hopefully next year, we'll get some better
On this being a preview of USA Outdoor nationals at Drake in 2010:
"For all of us, we all want to throw well, particularly
when we're going to be coming back. But it doesn't always happen that
way. So, at least we're going to get experience now and we'll come back
and be ready to go."
On her performance today:
"It wasn't a great distance, but it was better today than it's been in practice, so I can't ask for more than that."
Jill Camarena, New York AC, third, Women's Invitational Shot Putl, 57-3½ (17.46M). Heston is ranked second in the U.S.
On the experience of competing in such a top field:
it's always great to get them (the top throwers in the nation)
together. It's always a good competition, regardless of whatever the
weather is. So it's fun to compete against them, and we don't see each
other that much being spread across the country. So to get us all at
one meet is awesome."
On her third-place throw:
"I had a
rough day overall. I was kind of all over the place with my technique
and working on an injury. So it was OK. I wasn't super excited about
it, but it was a decent mark for right now."
On her injury:
"I sprained my ankle a
couple of weeks ago and I'm a little sick. So just when I hit that toe
board with that right foot and tried to stay, I fell a couple of times.
That's OK though."
Michelle Carter, Nike, fourth, Women's Invitational Shot Put, 57-2¾ (17.44M). Carter is ranked first in the U.S.
On the experience at Drake today:
enjoy coming to Drake. It's a great track meet, so I was really excited
- even though the weather's pretty bad today. But I enjoy coming here."
On competing in a competition featuring the top five throwers in the country:
"Oh yes, it was very exciting. The top people are here and it was a great competition today."
On her performance today and why it was a little rough for her:
me, it was more that I hate cold weather and I hate rain. So that's
something that I mentally have to overcome over time. I don't like to
be cold and I don't like to be wet, so mentally I have to really try
and think about other things to throw well on a day like today."
Justin Gaymon, Georgia, sr., winner men's
university-college 400 hurdles, 50.72 seconds, finished fourth at U.S.
Olympic trials last summer. Third straight Drake Relays victory in UC
400 hurdles. Set meet record last year.
On the race
was hoping, with some good weather, that I could get down into the low
49s. However, when I came around the last turn, the wind picked up. It
was tough, but it was still a good finish."
About the Relays
"I feel like a
celebrity being here. The weather isn't too good, but yet, there is a
full house and they're cheering everyone. It's great coming here every
year, and winning three straight 400 meter hurdle races is something