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USA On Top Of The World In Track In 2009
The red, white, and blue had a rough go in the 2008 Olympics. But the 2009 Yanks, led by the women's team, are topping the world in events from the 100m to the discus. Though we're only in early June, judging by the star talent and the depth across the board, the 2009 US team heading to Berlin may go down as one of the greatest America has ever produced (see quick stats below).
Credit for the early-season success should be given to the athletes, coaches and meet organizers across the country. The US system isn't perfect but we're doing very well. It's not a stretch to say the US has - thanks to the NCAA, high school and professional meets - by far the most dynamic, exciting track scene in the world.
Furthermore, after a period of time where illegal performance enhancing drugs were rife in the US system, it is easier to believe that most of the US's world leaders now are doing it clean.
Trivia answer: Brown Univ. Alum Anna Willard is #2 in the world in the 800m and steeplechase and #4 in the 1500m.
Men In The World Top 5:
100m 1. Michael Rodgers 9.94
200m 1. Tyson Gay 2. Wallace Spearmon 3. LaShawn Merritt
400m 1. LaShawn Merritt 2. Jeremy Wariner
400m hurdles 2. Kerron Clement 3. Bershawn Jackson
110m hurdles 1. David Oliver 2. Terrence Trammel 3. Wilson 4. A. Hicks 5. A. Merritt
Shot Put 1. Reese Hoffa 2. Dan Taylor 3. Christian Cantwell
Long Jump 1. Dwight Phillips
High Jump 1. Andra Manson 2. Jesse Williams (tie)
Others to watch: Bryan Clay (decathlon), Walter Dix (100m and 200m), Bernard Lagat (1500m and 5000m), Angelo Taylor (400h), Pole Vault, 4x100m, 4x400m
Women In The World Top-5:
100m 2. Carmelita Jeter
200m 1. Lauryn Williams 2. Shalonda Solomon
400m 1. Sanya Richards 2. Allyson Felix
800m 2. Anna Willard
1500m 2. Jennifer Barringer 4. A. Willard 5. Christin Wurth-Thomas
Steeple 1. J. Barringer 2. A. Willard
Long Jump 1. Brittney Reese 2. Funmi Jimoh
Discus 1. Stephanie Brown-Trafton
Pole Vault 1. Jenn S.
High Jump 2. Chaunte Howard
100 hurdles 2. Damu Cherry 3. Carruthers
400 hurdles 1. Lashinda Demus 2. Sheena Tosta
Others to watch: Lolo Jones and Dawn Harper (100m hurdles), 4x100m and 4x400m