January 27, 2009 by · 3 Comments
On the latest episode of PreRaceJitter’s Track and Field Radio Show, John W. Davis and I count down our 2009 track and field resolutions.
LaShawn Merritt and Jeremy Wariner will waste no time getting back to their rivalry. Last season ended with Merritt winning Olympic gold, while Wariner drew some major wins against Merritt at Grand Prix meets. Can Wariner take back the mantle this year?
The most pressing matter for Usain Bolt in 2009 is will the 100-meter world record get lowered. Biomechanics favor Bolt, while the fleet-footed Tyson Gay is seeking to return to top form after not fully recovering from a hamstring injury hampered his Olympic performance in Beijing.
Sanya Richards and Christine Ohuruogu
Will Sanya Richards get in the way of Christine Ohuruogu’s plans of taking another world championship in ’09? There could be sparks if Richards displays translates the success of the Grand Prix circuit at the World Championships in Berlin.
Tyson is preparing to mount a challenge to Usain Bolt in ’09. The 2007 world champion at 100 and 200 meters is seeking to return to top form. Attaining top speed is certainly needed as the winning in Berlin may certainly require a new world record at 100 meters.
How fast can she go this year? The Kenyan Olympic champion is still relatively inexperienced at 800 meters, with a major upside.
Liu Xiang’s Comeback
After a disappointing withdraw from the Beijing Games, Xiang subsequently underwent surgery successful surgery in December to repair the injured Achilles injury.
Jesse Owens made history at the legendary Berlin stadium. The World Championships return to Berlin from August 15 – 23, as today’s athletes hope to make their historical impact on the sport.
Hurdles and heartbreak go together like peanut and jelly. This season Lolo Jones will be seeking to stand at the top of the medal stand, thus elevating the 100 meter hurdles status in the sport.
Having hosted one of the most memorable U.S. Trials in recent history, it seems that Eugene, Oregon will be seeking to fight off a sophomore slump
Which races will you be talking about in 20 years?
Usain Bolt, Young At Heart
It’s no stretch to say that Bolt was as much a dominant force as a sprinter in track this year as Wilt Chamberlin was a scorer in basketball. The 22-year-old Jamaican was so hot that he accelerated global warming.
Yelena Isinbayeva, High Flying Act
The pole vault final in Beijing matched up reigning champion Yelena Isinbayeva and challenger Jennifer Stuczynski. Facing down each other, freshly minted American Record Holder Isinbayeva soared over the bar at 16 feet, 7 inches, increasing her own world record while securing her second Olympic gold.
Liu Xiang, Failure To Launch
Can you imagine the sight of Liu Xiang lined up in 110-meter hurdles in front of his countrymen? Fans were so shocked after the defending Olympic and former world record holder walked off the track after that false start.
Angelo Taylor, Leads Sweep
Team USA got off to a slow start, however in exactly 47.25 seconds, the 1-2-3 finish changes their fortunes. Taylor regaining the 400-meter hurdle title ahead of Kerron Clement and Bershawn Jackson after taking gold in 2000 Sydney revived the spirits of Team USA.
Lolo Jones, Top of the Class
Dignity is not something easily imitated or duplicated. Lolo maybe the top athlete that fans are rooting for after running into the hurdle. She left the games champion, no one showed more class than Lolo Jones in Beijing.
Bryan Clay, Larger Than Life
The 5 foot, 10 inch and 185 pound Hawaiian may have been overshadowed by Michael Phelps and the Jamaicans, but his timing could not have been more on to achieve the status as the ‘World’s Greatest Athlete’. Battling through asthma in winning the decathlon gold.
Stephanie Brown Trafton, Season’s Biggest Surprise
There is no coronation in track & field, you play to win the competition. Brown Trafton surprised everyone in Beijing in becoming the first U.S. woman in 76 years to win the discus.
Dayron Robles, Solid Gold Performance
A ruthless competitor over the hurdles. The Cuban hurdle star rolled 12.87 in Ostrava, Czech Republic establishing a new 110 meter world record.
Kenenisa Bekele, Double The Pleasure
Reassuring proof that the Ethiopians have a stranglehold on the distance events. Bekele led all the way, sprinting to an Olympic record over 5,000 meters, just days after winning the 10,000 meters.
American Women’s 4×400-meter relay, Thrilling Come-From-Behind Victory
After the come-from-behind victory over the Russians on the anchor leg, the scene could have ended with Sanya Richards being carried off the track on the shoulders off Mary Wineberg, Allyson Felix and Monique Henderson.
November 21, 2008 by · Leave a Comment
Not only have they won Olympic gold medals, now they hauled in the highest distinction given each year by USA Track & Field.
Olympic gold medalists Bryan Clay and Stephanie Brown Trafton have been named winners of the 2008 Jesse Owens Award by USA Track & Field.
Clay’s season was capped with two massive score performances during season while winning at the US Olympic Trials in Eugene, and the Olympic Games in Beijing.
With that, the 27-year-old Clay did not need much prodding to share his feelings.
“I have always regarded Jesse Owens with the highest respect for his accomplishments in the 1936 Olympics,” said Clay. “To be selected to receive this award and having my name associated with the legendary Jesse Owens is a great honor and a humbling experience. I am grateful, appreciative and truly humbled to have been chosen for such an esteemed award.”
Coming into the season, Stephanie Brown Trafton was an unlikely athlete that you could find to win the award, due in part because she who has never won a national title in the women’s discus throw.
Her first throw of 212 feet, 5 inches in Beijing put her into a lead that the world’s top throwers could not get within three feet of her mark. Brown Trafton is the first ever women’s thrower to be presented with the Jesse Owens Award.
Jay Hicks for Prerace Jitters.
September 6, 2008 by · Leave a Comment
Bryan Clay is the first athlete since Dan O’brien in 1996 to win the Olympic gold in the decathalon. The General Mills could not help but take notice and will bestow on him the tradition and honor of appearing on the Wheaties Box.
August 23, 2008 by · Leave a Comment
-Beijing - The prestigious title of “World’s Greatest All Around Athlete” belongs to Bryan Clay.
In past years, the event had star power. Remember the likes of Bruce Jenner, Jim Thorpe, Rafer Johnson, and Dan O’Brien becoming household names after winning the ten event competition? Bringing back gold almost guaranteed being featured on the front of the Wheaties box.
Well that is no longer the case.
NBC bypassed showing a major portion of the decathalon competition in order to air the BMX competition. Oh, how the sport and event have fallen from that pedastal.
So what that means is that millions of Americans saw very little of Clay’s impressive performance. He brought the title of “World’s Greatest Athlete” back to the U.S., something that has eluded Team USA since Dan O’Brien’s victory in 1996.
Clay put forth one of the most dominant performances of a generation. The U.S. Olympic Trials champion led from the first event and opened up an insurmountable lead, while never relinquishing the top sport during the grueling two-day competition.
The 2004 Olympic silver medalist and 2005 world champion, Clay finished with 8,791 points, including a solid 1,500 meter race to close out the competition.
“I hope the Wheaties box and all those types of things happen,” Clay said. “I’d love for this to be a spark for the decathlon and bring it back to the forefront of track and field.”
Bryan Clay is king now,” said Roman Sebrle of the Czech Republic, the world record holder and 2007 world champion who finished sixth, “and I was before. It was just about me giving him the crown for the next four years.”
August 7, 2008 by · Leave a Comment
Nothing grabs the populace like a track star with his shirt off and with that in mind Bryan Clay has teamed up with WIN in the name of charity.
Bryan Clay, a 2004 Olympic decathlete silver medalist is a proven champion both on and off the field. Clay deserves a round of applause for his leadership and his work in the community. He is competing in Beijing after setting an U.S. Olympic Trials record in winning the U.S. Olympic Trials and is lending his for a worthy cause.
In July, Clay introduced a new charity initiative called “Take Your Shirts Off” supported by WIN Products, the official licensed detergent of the U.S. Olympic Team.
Clay is asking people donate workout clothes to WIN, who will then wash them and give them to Winning Is Giving, an organization promoting athletic activities for the youth in refugee camps throughout the world.
A list of participating retailers can be found at sweatlifter.com or the mail-in address where people can send donations.
By Jay Hicks.
July 24, 2008 by · Leave a Comment
The folks are Pophangover.com recently wrote “that the Olympics are just around the corner - and that can only mean two things: 1) you’ll inevitably be traumatized by the sight of someone face-planting into a balance beam, and 2) it’s time for a new Got Milk ad.”
Featured in the 2008 photo are U.S. Olympians, of course. From left to right: swimmer Ryan Lochte, softball’s Cat Osterman, front, track and field’s Allyson Felix, gymnast Morgan Hamm, gymnast Paul Hamm, swimmer Maritza Correia, soccer player Leslie Osborne, track and field’s Bryan Clay, Kai and soccer player Sacha Kljestan.
By Jay Hicks.
April 28, 2008 by · 2 Comments
We think the women are gonna enjoy this more than the men!
This month’s Vogue Magazine features that American decathlete Bryan Clay with model Raquel Zimmermann. The magazine will be on the shelf all month. Vogue’s controversial cover with Gisele Bunchen and Lebron James leads into a series of short interviews with famous Olympic athletes and fashion models including Bryan Clay, Jared Rome, and Allyson Felix.
The former Olympian appears to be over the injuries that kept him from finishing at the ’07 U.S outdoor championships.
Photos courtesy Vogue Magazine.