Bowie blazes past women’s 200m field in statement victory
Tori Bowie proved to the world that she is one of the best sprinters in the world, clocking the fastest-ever time before the month of June and upsetting Olympic champion Elaine Thompson of Jamaica. Bowie, the anchor leg on the U.S. women’s 4x100m relay and the Olympic 100m silver medalist and 200m bronze medalist in Rio, beat her personal best by .22 to win in 21.77, a new Diamond League record, Pre Classic record and Hayward Field best. Olympic 400m champion Shaunae Miller-Uibo was second in 21.91 and Thompson crossed third in 21.98. It was the first time in track & field history that three women have gone sub-22 outside of a major championship meet.
“I came in not putting any pressure on myself this race,” said Bowie, who won bronze in the event in Rio, behind Thompson and Schippers. “I executed my plan and it went well. I don’t look at it as a big deal because I’m just preparing for the National Championships. I tried to go out there and just run by myself.”
Spencer runs personal best to beat brilliant women’s 400m hurdles field
Olympic bronze medalist Ashley Spencer shifted into another gear Saturday to win the women’s 400m hurdles. Returning to the track where she made her first U.S. Olympic Team, Spencer stormed past 2015 World Championships silver medalist Shamier Little over the final 100m to take home the 400m hurdles in 53.38, a personal best and the fastest time in the world this year. Little finished just behind in 53.44 and 2012 Olympian Georganne Moline was third in 54.09. Olympic champion Dalilah Muhammad was fifth in her first 400m hurdles race of the year.
Ashley Spencer’s win highlighted a 1-2-3 sweep for the American women in the 400-meter hurdles with her victory in 53.38 seconds. The bronze medalist at the Olympic Games Rio 2016, Spencer shaved almost a half-second off her previous best 400 hurdles time. Shamier Little (53.44 seconds) and Georganne Moline (54.09) finished second and third, respectively. Dalilah Muhammad, the reigning Olympic champion, placed fifth in 54.53.
“Shamier is a very talented athlete, and I’m just a newcomer in this event so I knew coming off the last hurdle I had to run like hell,” Spencer said. “And that’s what I did.”
Akinosun shut down stacked 100m lineup
Young stars Morolake Akinosun walked down a loaded field that included sprint stalwarts Veronica Campbell-Brown, Michelle Lee-Ahye and fellow Olympic 4x100m relay gold medalist Tianna Bartoletta. Akinosun stormed down the track to surpass Murielle Ahoure and Ahye to finish in a barely wind-aided 10.94.
Stowers staves off teammates
In the women’s 100-meter hurdles, Jasmin Stowers held off teammates Queen Harrison and Dawn Harper-Nelson, taking first in 12.59 seconds to win her second Diamond League event of 2017. Harrison was second in 12.64 seconds and Harper-Nelson third in 12.66.
“It’s always competitive,” Stowers said about a field that also included 2016 Olympic medalists Nia Ali and Kristi Castlin. “Every girl out there today is amazing, so to win it means a lot.”
Women’s Long and High Jump Excitement
Brittney Reese took first in the long jump on Friday with a winning mark of 7.01 meters. Also notable was Tianna Bartoletta’s runner-up finish in the long jump and 19-year-old Vashti Cunningham’s third-place effort in the high jump. Cunningham went 1.95 meters (6 feet, 4 ¾ inches).
“I think I definitely could have broken my PR today, but there were some complications with the first few attempts and just keeping my endurance up,” said Cunningham, whose PR is 1.97 meters. “But overall my progression from last year’s Pre is much better than this year so I’m thankful for that.”
Charlene Lipsey (Hempstead, New York) continued to impress in 2017, cruising to a victory in the USATF High-Performance Women’s 800m Friday night. Lipsey led from the gun with Rio Olympian Chrishuna Williams (Dallas, Texas) on her heels, as both USATF athletes utilized the pacemaker to get out front early. Lipsey charged around the Bowerman Curve on the final lap with the crowd roaring as she registered the first sub-2 finish of her career to win in 1:59.87. Williams crossed just behind Lipsey in 2:00.62. High schooler Sammy Watson (Henrietta, New York) ran a new personal best to finish third, recording a USATF Outdoors qualifying time of 2:01.47.
The USATF Outdoor Championships, part of the Team USA Summer Champions Series, presented by Comcast, is June 22-25 in Sacramento, California, and determines the team that goes to London.