Team USA Announced For Inaugural World Relays In Bahamas: US Women’s 4 X 800 Looks Great – US Stars Simpson, Symmonds, Centro And Cain Not Running

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Mary 13, 2014

MB: World Relays USA Team Announced: US 4×800 W Looking Great. Simpson, Symmonds, Centro, Cain NOT Running

The US Teams for the inaugural World Relay Championships (4×100, 4×200, 4×400, 4×800, 4×1500) in the Bahamas in two weeks were announced today by USATF. We have the full list of athletes and break down the US 4 x 800 and 4 x 1500 teams’ chances for you below.

While the US has some very strong teams and some distance teams that should take home medals and smash American, if not World records, the surprising and disappointing news for US distance fans is that quite a few of America’s mid-d stars aren’t going – Moscow silver medallists Jenny Simpson, Nick Symmonds and Matthew Centrowitz all aren’t on the Team USA roster. They aren’t the only big name absences as none of Centrowitz’s Nike Oregon Project teammates are going. Coach Alberto Salazar isn’t sending anyone. With Simpson and Shannon Rowbury, Treniere Moser, and Mary Cain not on the Team USA 4 x 1500 team, suddenly Team USA’s 4 x 1500 women’s team has gone from big-time gold medal contender (the US had four of the top 10 times in the world in 2013, plus Mary Cain who made the Worlds final) to an outside medal hope.

Ray Flynn, Jenny Simpson’s agent told LRC that Jenny made the decision this year to focus on the Diamond League this year. She is running in Shanghai this Sunday, Prefontaine the weekend after the World Relays, and then the adidas Grand Prix in New York City. He said the decision to skip World Relays was “a decision she made on her own” after we asked him if whether the top 1500m women decided not to run once they realized some of their stronger teammates weren’t going to run.

Brenda Martinez Will Be Going for a Medal

Brenda Martinez Will Be Going for a Medal

Ricky Simms, agent for Cain, Centrowitz and Rowbury wrote that Centro and Rowbury will be running at the Occidental High Performance meet (this Thursday) and then the Diamond League Prefontaine meet and then further Diamond League meets. Mary Cain is “in the middle of high school exams” and will open her season in Eugene.

Outside of the women’s 4×1500, the other USA distance teams are just missing one or two names. The top sprinter not participating on the men’s side is Justin Gatlin.

The US women’s 4×800 team is a very good one on paper with two worlds finalists in Brenda Martinez and Ajee Wilson plus World Indoor Champ Chanelle Price.

Quick Thought #1: We’re Looking Forward to World Relays, We Wish All of America’s Stars Were There : We’re very excited about the World Relays. US and World records are going to crumble. We just wish all the US athletes were as excited as us.

We get it, the athletes are pros and have their careers to look after. Today’s list of Team USA Members shows that patriotism clearly only goes so far. Most US track and field stars say representing the Stars and Stripes is the highlight of their career. At the end of their careers we think most athletes would remember much more a medal at the World Relays than running the obscure Oxy High Performance meet.

Quick Thought #2: Should It Be at the End of the Year? We think an event like this could ultimately end up being very popular. We think in the future moving it a week after the last DL final might make more sense. What stars wouldn’t want to go to the Bahamas and run for their country at the end of the season? The NFL rewards its top stars with a trip to the Pro Bowl in Hawaii each year. Maybe the IAAF should consider moving this meet to later in the year.

Quick Thought #3: The US Can Deliver in the Distances: We present the US Teams for you in the order of their awesomeness (medal prospects). Note, the selection criteria stated that World and Olympic team members from 2012 and 2013 and then top 2 finishers at 2014 USA Indoors were to be given priority. So you can assume people meeting those criteria (assuming they are fit) were offered spots.

Women’s 4 x 800

World Record – 7:50.17 – USSR 2005 (1:57.54 per woman)
US Record – 8:04.31 – USA Red 2013 (2:01.07 per woman)

Team USA:

GeenaGall-LaraLondon Olympics, 2:01.1 at Mt. Sac1:59.24 pb
CharleneLipsey2:01.09 PR this year2:01.09 pb
BrendaMartinezWorld Champs Bronze1:57.91 pb
ChanellePriceWorld indoor champ, Doha DL 2nd place1:59.75 pb
Ajee’WilsonAmerican Junior Record holder1:58.21 pb

Who’s Else Might Have Been on Team:
Alysia Montano – Pregnant
Mary Cain – High School
Kate Grace – Running 4×1500
Molly Beckwith Ludlow – #3 USA Indoors, 2:00.55 in Doha.

Medal Prospects: Incredible.

Quick Thought #1: The US record is definitely history. If Montano wasn’t pregnant, this team would probably be favored for gold. With Eunice Sum on the anchor, Kenya probably deserves that label, but isn’t Team USA a lock for silver?

Men’s 4 x 800

World Record – 7:02.43 – Kenya 2006 (1:45.60 per man)
US Record – 7:02.82 – Santa Monica TC 2006 (1:45.70 per man)

Team USA:

FirstLastHow qualified?PB
RobbyAndrewsTop 2 USA Indoors1:44.71
BrandonJohnsonWorld Champs1:43.84
MichaelRutt#2 6th USA Indoors1:45.08
DuaneSolomonWorld Champs/Olympics, #2 US ever1:42.82
MarkWieczorek5th USA Indoors1:45.36

Who’s Else Might Have Been on Team:
Nick Symmonds – #3 USA ever
Erik Sowinski – US Indoor Champ/ 1:44.58 @ MT. Sac
Tyler Mulder – 4th USA Indoors, 1:44.34 last year

Medal Prospects: Very good. Gold should go to Kenya but after that Team USA has got a real good shot for silver.

Quick Thought #1: A US record is a real possibility here even without Symmonds and Sowinski.

Men’s 4 x 1500

World Record – 14:36.23 – Kenya 2009 (3:39.05 per man)
US Record – 14:46.30 – USA 2009 (3:41.57 per man)
Team USA:

FirstLastHow qualified?PB
PatCasey3rd at Drake, 2nd in Road Mile3:40.04
GarrettHeath3:34.12 last year 5th in US, 3rd US indoors3:34.12
WillLeerTop 2 US indoors – 3:35.27 last year3:35.29
DavidTorrence2nd fastest guy in US in 2013 (3:33.23).3:33.23

Who’s Else Might Have Been Considered: Olympians Matthew Centrowitz and Andrew Wheating (hasn’t raced this year) aren’t in the field nor are the following guys who all ran 3:34 last year: Jordan McNamara, Andy Bayer, Lopez Lomong, and Cory Leslie.

Medal Prospects: Decent. Kenya has gold wrapped up but after that there are two medals and the only candidates would be Ethiopia, Morocco and the US.

Quick Thought #1: The US record is history.

Women’s 4 x 1500

World Record – 17:08.17 – Kenya 2014 – (4:17.04 per woman)
US Record – 17:08.34 – Univ. Tennessee 2009 (4:17.08 per woman)
Team USA:

FirstLastHow qualified?PB
KateGrace#3 in US in 2014, 4:07.35 pb.4:07.35
HeatherKampfMade world 1500 team, 4:07.15 pb.4:07.15
KatieMackey4:04.60 last year.4:04.60
MorganUcenyFormer world #1, 2012 US Olympian. 4:08.68 this year.4:00.06
SaraVaughnMt. Sac champ has pb of just 4:08.34.4:08.34

Who’s Missing: See below.

Medal Prospects: Not great. This team went from a lock for at least silver to a ‘pray for bronze’ team with all of the absences. Ethiopian, Morocco, GBR, likely wouldn’t touch this team at full strength.

Quick Thought #1: Here’s a breakdown of how the US went from having 4 in the top 10 last year in the world and 5 of top 14 to this team:

2013 Time/Runner/Status
4:00.48 Jenny Simpson (NBal) – Declined
4:00.94 Brenda Martinez (NBal) – On 800 team
4:01.28 Shannon Rowbury (Nik) – Declined
4:01.48 Gabriele Anderson (Brk) – Not invited (only 4:17 at Drake)
4:02.85 Treniere Moser (Nik) – Declined

Discuss: MB: World Relays USA Team Announced: US 4×800 W Looking Great. Simpson, Symmonds, Centro, Cain NOT Running

Full USA team is listed below with USATF press release below that.

Full USA Team for The Inaugural World Relays Team

FirstLastEventCurrent ResidenceHometownCollege/UniversityTwitter Handle
MarvinBracyMen’s 4x100mClermont, FloridaOrlando, FloridaFlorida State University@BraceYaself
TrellKimmonsMen’s 4x100mJackson, MississippiColdwater, MississippiHinds CC@TrellKimmons988
CalesioNewmanMen’s 4x100mGreensboro, North CarolinaGreen Sea, South CarolinaNorth Carolina A&T@Mr_Sprinta
MikeRodgersMen’s 4x100mRound Rock, TexasSt. Louis, MissouriOklahoma Baptist University@Mr_Rodgers_DAT
R. MookieSalaamMen’s 4x100mTuscaloosa, AlabamaEdmond, OklahomaUniversity Of Oklahoma@RakieemSalaam
CharlesSilmonMen’s 4x100mFort Worth, TexasWaco, TexasTexas Christian University@charlessilmon
WalterDixMen’s 4x200mLos Angeles, CaliforniaCoral Springs, FloridaFlorida State University@RealWalterDix
CurtisMitchellMen’s 4x200mClermont, FloridaDaytona Beach, FloridaTexas A&M University@mrmitchell200m
MauriceMitchellMen’s 4x200mOverland Park, KansasKansas City, MissouriFlorida State University@swift_reece
WallaceSpearmonMen’s 4x200mFayetteville, ArkansasFayetteville, ArkansasUniversity of Arkansas@PrinceSpearmon
IsiahYoungMen’s 4x200mOxford, MississippiJunction City, KansasUniversity of Mississippi@ALLORN0THIN
TorrinLawrenceMen’s 4x400mGainesville, FloridaJacksonville, FloridaUniversity of Georgia@TLawrence400
TonyMcQuayMen’s 4x400mGainesville, FloridaRiviera Beach, FloridaUniversity of Florida@McQuay_Runs
LaShawnMerrittMen’s 4x400mPortsmouth, VirginiaPortsmouth, VirginiaEast Carolina University@lashawnmerritt
ClaytonParrosMen’s 4x400mClermont, FloridaBloomfield, New JerseyUniversity of North Carolina@Cparros
ChristianTaylorMen’s 4x400mLoughborough, UKFayetteville, GeorgiaUniversity of Florida@taylored2jump
DavidVerburgMen’s 4x400mGainesville, FloridaLynchburg, VirginiaGeorge Mason University@AdiVerb
RobbyAndrewsMen’s 4x800mPrinceton, New JerseyEnglishtown, New JerseyUniversity of Virginia@RA_Andrews
BrandonJohnsonMen’s 4x800mBig Bear, CaliforniaOrange, TexasUCLA@gobrandonj
MichaelRuttMen’s 4x800mPlainsboro, New JerseySinking Springs, PennsylvaniaUniversity of Connecticut@Mike_Rutt
DuaneSolomonMen’s 4x800mLos Angeles, CaliforniaLompoc, CaliforniaUniversity of Southern California@DuaneBang800
MarkWieczorekMen’s 4x800mSeattle, WashingtonPonca City, OklahomaMid America Nazarene University@wizzo800
PatCaseyMen’s 4x1500mEugene, OregonLaurel, MontanaUniversity Of Oklahoma@patkc13
GarrettHeathMen’s 4x1500mSeattle, WashingtonWinona, MinnesotaStanford University@_garrettheath
WillLeerMen’s 4x1500mLos Angeles, CaliforniaMinnetonka, MinnesotaPomona College@william_leer
LeoManzanoMen’s 4x1500mAustin, TexasMarble Falls, TexasUniversity of Texas@leomanzano
DavidTorrenceMen’s 4x1500mOakland, CaliforniaTarzana, CaliforniaUniversity of California-Berkeley@David_Torrence
AlexAndersonWomen’s 4x100mClermont, FloridaChicago, IllinoisUniversity of Texas@mzalex_a
TiannaBartolettaWomen’s 4x100mTampa, FloridaElyria, OhioUniversity of Tennessee@teamtianna
LakeishaLawsonWomen’s 4x100mWest Covina, CaliforniaVictorville, CaliforniaUniversity of Nevada-Las Vegasn/a
TawannaMeadowsWomen’s 4x100mDallas, TexasPanama City, FloridaTroy University@Its_Speechless
BarbaraPierreWomen’s 4x100mKnightdale, North CarolinaWinter Haven, FloridaSaint Augustine’s University@Barbie_gitt1
Stacey-AnnSmithWomen’s 4x100mRound Rock, TexasBloomfield, ConnecticutUniversity of Texas@Sas_Dash
ToriBowieWomen’s 4x200mChula Vista, CaliforniaSandhill, MississippiSouthern Mississippin/a
ParisDanielsWomen’s 4x200mSt. Louis, MissouriSt. Louis, MissouriUniversity of Kansasn/a
KimberlynDuncanWomen’s 4x200mBaton Rouge, LouisianaKaty, TexasLSU@KiMBEAUX__
BiancaKnightWomen’s 4x200mAustin, TexasRidgeland, MississippiUniversity of Texas@MidKnightDreams
ShalondaSolomonWomen’s 4x200mWinter Garden, FloridaInglewood, CaliforniaUniversity of South Carolina@Shalonda200m
JenebaTarmohWomen’s 4x200mLos Angeles, CaliforniaSan Jose, CaliforniaTexas A&M University@JenebaSylvia
JoannaAtkinsWomen’s 4x400mClermont, FloridaStone Mountain, GeorgiaAuburn Universityn/a
JessicaBeardWomen’s 4x400mCollege Station, TexasEuclid, OhioTexas A&M University@Run2reign
MonicaHargroveWomen’s 4x400mMarietta, GeorgiaNew Haven, ConnecticutGeorgetown University@Monica_Hargrove
NatashaHastingsWomen’s 4x400mRound Rock, TexasBrooklyn, New YorkUniversity of South Carolina@natashahastings
SanyaRichards-RossWomen’s 4x400mAustin, TexasKingston, JamaicaUniversity of Texas@SanyaRichiRoss
Dee DeeTrotterWomen’s 4x400mLos Angeles, CaliforniaDecatur, GeorgiaUniversity of Tennessee@dtrott400m
GeenaGall-LaraWomen’s 4x800mCorvallis, OregonFlint, MichiganUniversity of Michigan@GeenaGall
CharleneLipseyWomen’s 4x800mBaton Rouge, LouisianaHempstead, New YorkLSUn/a
BrendaMartinezWomen’s 4x800mRancho Cucamonga, CaliforniaRancho Cucamonga, CaliforniaUniversity of California-Riverside@bmartrun
ChanellePriceWomen’s 4x800mKnoxville, TennesseeEaston, PennsylvaniaUniversity of Tennessee@ChanellePrice
Ajee’WilsonWomen’s 4x800mPhiladelphia, PennsylvaniaNeptune, New JerseyTemple University@AjeeW
KateGraceWomen’s 4x1500mBend, OregonSanta Monica, CaliforniaYale University@fastk8
HeatherKampfWomen’s 4x1500mMinneapolis, MinnesotaInver Grove Heights, MinnesotaUniversity of Minnesota@HeatherRaeKampf
KatieMackeyWomen’s 4x1500mSeattle, WashingtonFort Collins, ColoradoUniversity of Washington@KatiefMackey
MorganUcenyWomen’s 4x1500mBrighton, MassachusettsPlymouth, IndianaCornell University@MUceny
SaraVaughnWomen’s 4x1500mBoulder, ColoradoGering, NebraskaUniversity of Colorado@MomVaughn

USATF release:

INDIANAPOLIS — Team USA’s roster is set for the inaugural IAAF World Relays Championships, contested Saturday and Sunday, May 24-25 at Thomas A. Robinson National Stadium in Nassau, Bahamas.

A total of 55 athletes comprise the relay pools that will represent the red, white and blue at the event, which airs live on Universal Sports from 6:30-9:00 p.m. ET on both days of competition.

The first competition of its kind, the IAAF World Relays Championships consist of the 4×100, 4×200, 4×400, 4×800 and 4×1500 relays on both the men’s and women’s sides. Scheduled for primetime, the World Relays provide the only major world championship for the 2014 outdoor season.

The men’s and women’s 4×400-meter relay pools are especially impressive, with 2013 World Champions Tony McQuay, LaShawn Merritt, and David Verburg in the pool, as well as Olympic gold medalist triple jumper Christian Taylor, an accomplished quartermiler at the University of Florida,NCAA Champion Torrin Lawrence and Clayton Parros, who was a member of the 4×4 pool at the IAAF World Indoor Championships in Sopot, Poland.

On the women’s side, Olympic gold medalists Natasha Hastings, Sanya Richards-Ross and Dee Dee Trotter are in the relay pool, as well as two-time World medalists Joanna Atkins, Jessica Beard andMonica Hargrove.

Nearly 50 nations are sending teams to Nassau for the World Relays, which is expected to qualify some teams for the 15th IAAF World Championships in Beijing, China and the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio, Brazil.

A full schedule can be found on and tickets are available for purchase now.

The official hashtag for the event is #WorldRelays. Be sure to follow along in Nassau with USATF onTwitter, Facebook and Instagram.

MB: World Relays USA Team Announced: US 4×800 W Looking Great. Simpson, Symmonds, Centro, Cain NOT Running