The Stars Align As The Diamond League Resumes In Stockholm
Bolt, Gay, Powell - Plus A Great Men's 800 And 5k As Well As Women's 1,500
August 4, 2010
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After a two-plus-week hiatus, the Diamond League returns on Friday with a stellar meet in Stockholm. At last, track and field aficionados as well as the casual sports fan will get to see a clash of the Big 3 in men's sprinting - Asafa Powell, Tyson Gay and Usain Bolt - for the first time this year when they square off in the marquee event of track and field - the men's 100. Is Usain Bolt still the fastest man on the planet despite his injury problems? We'll find out Friday.
The meet also features a very good men's 800 that includes Americans Andrew Wheating and Nick Symmonds as well as most of the top players on the world scene sans David Rudisha. After the women's 1,500 is completed, we'll probably know who can lay claim to being the best in the world right now, as world leader Anna Alminova will battle Olympic and African champ Nancy Lagat and all of the top healthy Americans in Shannon Rowbury, Christin Wurth Thomas, Anna Pierce and Morgan Uceny. In the men's 5,000, there are eight competitors in the field who have broken 13:00 this year, including Chris Solinsky plus Galen Rupp and world cross-country champion Joseph Ebuya. All of that and a whole lot more.
We preview it all for you below. We hope you enjoy the show.
*Stockholm Start Lists/Results The marquee events at the meet takes place from 1-4 pm EST on Friday (although the women's 5,000 is at 12:25 EST).
Men's 100: The Big Three Collide
Usain Bolt, Asafa Powell and Tyson Gay are all in the same 100 meter race. We don't need to say any more.
LRC Prediction: Instead of us making a prediction, we got a prediction from our favorite track and field announcer, Ato Boldon. Boldon, a 4-time Olympic medallist and a 9.86 man himself, emailed us the following prediction:
1. Bolt 9.78
2. Gay 9.83
3. Powell 9.88
However, Boldon also added in the email, "Powell is out reportedly." (Editor's addition: Boldon is right. Powell has pulled out.)
Men's 800: How Will Symmonds And Wheating Stack Up In Loaded Field?
Men's 800 KAKI KHAMIS Abubaker 89 SUD KAMEL Yusuf Saad BRN KIVUNA Jackson Mumbwa 89 KEN LAALOU Amine 82 MAR LALANG Boaz 89 KEN LEWANDOWSKI Marcin 87 POL RIMMER Michael 86 GBR ROBINSON Khadevis 76 USA SYMMONDS Nick 83 USA WHEATING Andrew 87 USA YEGO Alfred Kirwa 86 KEN
The men's 800 doesn't feature the Abubaker Kaki/David Rudisha clash that Kaki talked about when he skipped out on the 800 at the African champs and said he wasn't afraid of Rudisha. Apparently, the world beater Rudisha has never been entered in Stockholm, so don't blame him.
World #2 Abubaker Kaki is obviously the favorite as he hasn't lost to anyone but Rudisha this year, but the race has a lot of accomplished and in-form 800 guys in the field, including the gold and silver medallists from Europeans in Marcin Lewandowski and Michael Rimmer, as well as the silver and bronze medallists from the African champs in Alfred Yego and Jackson Kivuna, plus the silver medallist in the 1,500 from the African champs in Amine Laalou. But world #3 Boaz Lalang may be the one most likely to challenge Kaki, as Lalang ahs run 1:43.29 this year to Kaki's 1:43.23.
All of that is great, but Americans will be watching this race intently, as it includes the top two 800 meter runners in the US in Nick Symmonds and Andrew Wheating. Symmonds probably thinks he's the top US guy, given the fact he's won the last three US championships and has a PR of 1:43.83. However, Wheating is the star of the moment and this is his first race since his startling 3:30.90 1,500-meter performance in Monaco. When the two matched up against each other at 800 last month in Paris, Wheating finished as the first American in 1:44.62 to Symmonds' 1:44.93. However, in that race, Symmonds was more aggressive early on and Wheating was cherry picking from behind. With the confidence of his 3:30.90 in him, will Wheating be more aggressive this time? Even if he is, he still could lose to Symmonds, as lost in Wheating's Monaco hoopla was the fact that Symmonds ran 1:44.06 there. It's clear that Symmonds seems poised to rejoin 1:43 territory. It should be a great race.
The field is totally loaded and the only guy we haven't mentioned (besides rabbit Khadevis Robinson) is 2009 world 1,500-meter champion Yusuf Kamel, who will be attempting to finish his first race of the year.
LRC Prediction: Kaki loses. We're not sure if we think he'll lose or if we just want him to lose since he skipped out on the 800 at the African champs. We think one American will live up to the hype and be in the 1:43 range and one will disappoint but we just don't know who it will be.
5,000: Rupp, Solinsky And Most Of The World's Best
Men's 5000 BEKELE Tariku ETH - 2010 world #4 BIRMINGHAM Collis 84 AUS BIWOTT Yusuf Kibet 86 KEN CHEPKOK Vincent Kiprop KEN - 2010 world #2 CHOGE Augustine Kiprono 87 KEN C'KURUI James Kwalia 84 QAT DABA Bekana 88 ETH - 2010 world #10 EBUYA Joseph 87 KEN GEBREMESKEL Dejen 89 ETH - 2010 world #12 KIPCHOGE Eliud 84 KEN - 2010 world leader KIPTOO Mark Kosgei KEN - bronze at 2010 Africans KISORIO Matthew Kipkoech 89 KEN - 2010 world #9 KOGO Micah Kemboi 86 KEN Mbishei Titus 90 KEN MERGA Imane 88 ETH - 2010 world #3 Moran Ed 81 USA ROTICH Lucas Kimeli 90 KEN - 2010 world #6 RUPP Galen 86 USA SIMOTWO Suleiman 80 KEN SOLINSKY Chris 84 USA - 2010 world #7 VAN DEVENTER Juan 83 RSA YATOR Vincent KEN - silver at 2010 Africans
The men's 5,000 is totally stacked. It includes 7 of the world's top 10 for 2010 (8 guys in the field have broken 13:00 in 2010), including American Chris Solinsky. Add to that 2010 world cross-country champion Joseph Ebuya as well as the silver and bronze medallists from last week's African champs in Vincent Yator and Mark Kiptoo plus Americans Galen Rupp and Ed Moran and you've got a race you'll definitely want to watch.
American viewers will be watching for three things primarily.
1) Can Galen Rupp dip under 13:00 for the first time? His PR is 13:10, so if he does, it's a major breakthrough.
2) How competitive will Chris Solinsky be up front?
3) Is there anyway Rupp can beat Solinsky?
Assuming the rabbits do their job, the race should be plenty fast up front, as the weather forecast of mid to high 60s with little wind looks good.
2010 American 10,000 meter runner-up Ed Moran is in the field despite the fact his PR is only 13:20. He'd better be ready to step it up.
Editor's Note: 12:15 pm Friday Our Preview does not mention Augustine Choge. Choge has run 3:30 for 1500m and 12:53 for 5k in the past. This is his first 5k of the year but he may be the man to beat. (One of the LRC staff members has picked him to win in our prediction contest).
LRC Prediction: Rupp over Solinsky. We're not sure if that means that Rupp breaks 13:00, as 13:10 is a long way from 13:00. We just wonder if Solinsky will really do well. People need to realize Solinsky is two months removed from his 12:56 and four months removed from his 26:59. We know he went back into a base phase and that's his explanation for his 13:08 at Pre, but that's a long time to be in form.
Women's 1,500: Who Thinks They Are #1 In The World?
Women's 1500 ALMINOVA Anna 85 RUS Arigawi Abeba 90 ETH BELETE Mimi 88 BRN BURKA Gelete 86 ETH DOBRISKEY Lisa 83 GBR ENGLAND Hannah 87 GBR JAMAL Maryam Yusuf 84 BAR LANGAT Nancy Jebet 81 KEN MĹKESTAD Ingvill 81 NOR PIERCE Anna 84 USA ROWBURY Shannon 84 USA Schoenbek Charlotte SWE TWELL Stephanie 89 GBR UCENY Morgan 85 USA WURTH-THOMAS Christin 80 USA YEVDOKIMOVA Natalya 78 RUS
The women's 1,500 is intriguing on a number of fronts. It includes four of the six women who have broken 4:00 already in 2010, including world leader Anna Alminova as well as world #2 Geleta Burka. It also includes the woman whom we view as the best 1,500 meter runner on the planet in Nancy Langat of Kenya. Langat is best known for being the 2008 Olympic champion, but she also defeated Burka last week to become the African champ. She's won 8 of her 9 1,500 so far this year (with her only loss coming in her last Diamond league race in Lausanne), but the shocking thing is she's never broken 4:00 in her career. It's time for her to do it on Friday.
But even if she does it, the question is will she win? And no one really knows because no one knows how Russia's Anna Alminova will perform. In her last Diamond League event in Paris, she was simply way better than everyone else and won in 3:57.65 but then could only manage a 6th-place showing in 4:02 last week at Europeans. Will the good and unbeatable Alminova show up?
A bunch of Americans are hoping to be in the mix in this race. Leading the charge may be Christin Wurth Thomas, who was 2nd to Alminova in Paris in 3:59.59. Alminova and Wurth Thomas have been playing opposite roles of late, as prior to her 3:59.59 clocking, she had only run 4:03.44 in her previous race. Which Wurth Thomas will show up?
2009 World Championships bronze medallist Shannon Rowbury is also in the race and she, like Langat, will be looking for the first sub 4:00 of her career. Rowbury should be full of confidence, as she set a seasonal best in her last 1,500 on July 16th (4:01.30) before running arguably the American record in the 3,000 on July 22nd in her last race (8:31.38). Fellow American Morgan Uceny also comes into the race confident and looking for her first sub-4:00, as her PR is 4:02.40. Uceny broke 2:00 for the first time in her last 800 race (1:59.29).
And that leaves us with American Anna Pierce. Pierce could very well be the top American, but also very well could be the last American in the field, as she's had a weird 2010 campaign. In her last race, she set a seasonal best of 1:58.89, so it very well may be that's she's rounding into form. But her 1,500s in 2010 have been nowhere near what she did in 2009, when she ran 3:59.38. So far in 2010, her best 1,500 was her first - a 4:05.96 she ran way back in May at the adidas Grand Prix in New York. Just 6 days before her 1:58.89, Pierce was dead last in Paris in the 1,500 with a sub-standard 4:07.92.
Brit Lisa Dobriskey is probably motivated to run well, as despite her sub-4:00 time this year, she was unable to medal at Europeans.
LRC Prediction: Nancy Langat proves she's the best in the world with a win and the first sub-4:00 of her career. We think Rowbury will get under 4:00 as well for the first time in her career.
Women's Steeple: European Champ Versus African Champ
Women's Steeple ASSEFA Sofia 87 ETH CHEIYWA Milcah Chemos 86 KEN Cherotich Purity 93 KEN CLITHEROE Helen 74 GBR FRANEK Bridget 87 USA FRANKIEWICZ Wioletta 77 POL Galaviz Lisa USA HINDS Korene 76 JAM HYMAN Mardrea 72 JAM ITAA Korahubish 92 ETH KIPKEMOI Gladys Jerotich 86 KEN KOWALSKA Katarzyna 85 POL NJOROGE Mercy Wanjiku 86 KEN ROTICH Lydia Jebet 88 KEN ZARUDNEVA Yuliya 86 RUS
The winner of the European champs - Russia's Yuliya Zarudneva, who ran a championship record of 9:17 - will clash with 2010 world leader and African champ Milcah Chemos, who has run 9:11 this year. 2010 world #2 Gladys Kikpemoi (9:13 SB) is also running, as is 2010 world #5 Lydia Rotich (9:18 SB). Rotich got the bronze at the African champs last week while Ethiopia's Sofia Assefa, who is racing here as well, got the silver.
Americans Bridget Franek (9:32 SB/PR) and Lisa Galaviz (9:41 SB) are entered as well.
There are a lot of other events in the meet, including a men's and women's steeple. They appear below.
Women's 5,000: Euro Gold Or African Silver?
Women's 5000 ANTENEH Emebet 92 ETH BEKELE Alemitu 77 TUR DEFAR Meseret 83 ETH FLESHMAN Lauren 81 USA MURIUKI Margaret 86 KEN Nawowuna Alice 94 KEN RHINES Jennifer 74 USA UTURA Sule 90 ETH
2004 Olympic 5,000 champ and 2010 African champs silver medallist Meseret Defar will clash with 2010 European champ Alemitu Bekele in the women's 5,000. Of course, Bekele's PR is only 14:46, so she may not finish 2nd.
2010 US champ Lauren Fleshman is rabbiting and the race is being billed as a world record attempt by Defar, but the thought of her breaking the 14:11.15 world record is a huge stretch in our minds as she didn't even win the African champs last week. That being said, Defar did run 14:12.88 here in 2008 and did run 14:24 indoors this year as well. But in our minds, there is almost ZERO chance the world record goes down and we're upset to see it hyped as a record attempt.
American Jen Rhines will try to make amends for her last two races, which were disasters. At Pre, she ran 15:22 in the 5k and then followed that up with a 9:24 16th-place showing in Lausanne for 3k.
LRC Predicton: Defar wins. The world leader of 14:27.41 might go as well.
Men's Steeplechase: Why Isn't The World Leader Running?
Not the most interesting of fields, but it includes 2010 world #2 in Paul Kipsiele Koech. We thought for sure Brimin Kipruto, the world leader, would be racing since he didn't do the African champs but he's not entered.
ABDI Youcef 77 AUS
CHELIMO Elijah 87 KEN
CHUMBA Linus 80 KEN
KAMIL Zakrya Ali QAT
KIPYEGO Michael 83 KEN
KITUM Silas Kosgei 90 KEN
KOECH Paul Kipsiele 81 KEN
LAGAT Haron KEN
LANGAT Patrick 89 KEN
MOHAMED Mustafa 79 SWE
ROBA Gari 82 ETH
TAHER Tareq Mubarak 86 BRN
Yego Hillary Kipsang 92 KEN
Men's 400h: Which Champion Will Win?
A very nice field that includes the 2010 world leader Bershawn Jackson plus Olympic champs Angelo Taylor and Felix Sánchez.
CULSON Javier PUR
GORDON Jehue TRI
GREENE David 86 GBR
JACKSON Bershawn 83 USA
PHILLIPS Isa 84 JAM
SÁNCHEZ Félix 77 DOM
TAYLOR Angelo 78 USA
TINSLEY Michael 69 USA
Men's TJ: Will Tamgho Be Ready To Fly Again?
Will the injured world leader in Tamgho be able to beat the world #3 and #5 from Cuba in Copello and Giralt?
Adams Lyukman 88 RUS
BETANZOS Yoandri 82 CUB
COPELLO Alexis 85 CUB
GIRALT David 84 CUB
KARAILIEV Momchil 82 BUL
LEWIS Randy 80 GRN
OLSSON Christian SWE
TAMGHO Teddy 89 FRA
Men's Javelin: The Top 5 Are Here
The Swedes like their javelin throws, as the top 5 in the world are all entered.
BANNISTER Jarrod 84 AUS
DE ZORDO Matthias 88 GER
FRYDRYCH Petr 88 CZE
KOVALS Ainars 81 LAT
MAKAROV Sergey 73 RUS
MANNIO Ari 87 FIN
MARTÍNEZ Guillermo CUB
PITKÄMÄKI Tero 82 FIN
PYATNYTSYA Oleksandr 85 UKR
THORKILDSEN Andreas 82 NOR
WIRKKALA Teemu 84 FIN
Women's 400: World #1 And #2 Square Off
World #1 Debbie Dunn (49.64 in 2010) will face world #2 Tatyana Firova (49.89 in 2010).
DUNN Debbie 78 USA
FIROVA Tatyana 82 RUS
KRIVOSHAPKA Antonina 87 RUS
MCCORORY Francena 88 USA
MONTSHO Amantle 83 BOT
Nazarova Natalia RUS
WILLIAMS Shericka 85 JAM
WILLIAMS-MILLS Novlene 82 JAM
Women's 200 - The Allyson Felix Show
Bryzgina Yelizveta 89 UKR
CHERMOSHANSKAYA Yuliya 86 RUS
FEDORIVA Aleksandra 88 RUS
FELIX Allyson 85 USA
FERGUSON-MCKENZIE Debbie 76 BAH
KNIGHT Bianca 89 USA
Moore Consuella 81 USA
SOLOMON Shalonda 85 USA
Women's 110 Hurdles: 4 Of Top 5 In World Battle
2010 world leader Lolo Jones squares off with world #2 Priscilla Lopes-Schliep as well as #4 Perdita Felicien and #5 Queen Harrison.
Barber Aleesha 87 TRI
CARRUTHERS Danielle 79 USA
CRAWFORD Virginia 83 USA
DEKTYAREVA Tatyana 81 RUS
DENBY Nichole 82 USA
DIXON Vonette 75 JAM
FELICIEN Perdita 80 CAN
GLENN Brianna 80 USA
HARRISON Queen 88 USA
JONES Lolo 82 USA
LOPES-SCHLIEP Priscilla 82 CAN
OFILI Tiffany 87 USA
PEARSON Sally 86 AUS
Snihur Yevheniya 84 UKR
VUKICEVIC Christina 87 NOR
WELLS Kellie 82 USA
Women's HJ: Blanka Vlaic And Chante Howard-Lowe Will Battle Yet Again
GORDEYEVA Irina 86 RUS
GREEN Emma 84 SWE
HOWARD-LOWE Chaunte 84 USA
ILJUTENKO Anna 85 EST
Ljungmark Ebba 87 SWE
Palsyte Airine 92 LTU
SHKOLINA Svetlana 86 RUS
SPENCER Lavern 84 LCA
Vlasic Blanka 83 CRO
Pole Vault: Fabiana Murer Is #2 In The World This Year
DENNISON Kate 84 GBR
FEOFANOVA Svetlana 80 RUS
GADSCHIEW Kristina 84 GER
GOLUBCHIKOVA Yuliya 83 RUS
HINGST Carolin 80 GER
JANSON Lacy 83 USA
KIRYASHOVA Aleksandra 85 RUS
MURER Fabiana 81 BRA
Ptacnikova Jirina CZE
RYZIH Lisa 88 GER
SPIEGELBURG Silke 86 GER
Long Jump Women: The Swede Klüft Will Be The Most Watched
BALTA Ksenija 86 EST
GOMES Naide 79 POR
KLISHINA Darya RUS
KLÜFT Carolina 83 SWE
Kolchanova Luydmila 79 RUS
Kotova Tatjana RUS
KUCHERENKO Olga 85 RUS
Radevica Ineta LAT
REESE Brittney 86 USA
SOKOLOVA Yelena 86 RUS
Shot Put Women: World Leader Ostapchuk Will Try To Hold Off The Olympic Champ Vili
ADAMS-VILI Valerie 84 NZL
BOREL-BROWN Cleopatra 79 TRI
CAMARENA Jillian 82 USA
ENGMAN Helena 76 SWE
GONZÁLEZ Misleidis 78 CUB
Khoroneko-Mikhnevich Natalya 82 BLR
KLEINERT Nadine 75 GER
Korolchik-Provalinskaya Yanina 76 RUS
LAMMERT Petra 84 GER
OSTAPCHUK Nadezhda 80 BLR
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