New York City, USAMore history was embedded at New York City's historic armory and the Road to Beijing looks good for Russian’s Liliya Shobukhova and Great Britain’s Andy Baddeley after their convincing victories at the New Balance Games on Saturday (19).
In Shobukhova’s first appearance in the U.S., the former World indoor record holder in the 3000m set an early World lead in the Mile with her 4:31.90. After an opening 800m in 2:15, Shobukhova led a tight group comprising of Megan Metcalfe (CAN), Amy Moritmer (USA), Sara Hall (USA) and Hilary Stellingwerff (CAN). Despite a strong move by Metcalfe approaching the bell lap, it was Shobukhova who displayed a strong finish holding off Metcalfe, Mortimer and fast closing Jen Rhines (USA).
Stating, “She loved New York” and was delighted to be in the Big Apple after completing a 30 kilometre training run back home at -30 C. Brrrr! She hopes to compete in Beijing in the 5000m where it will be a touch warmer.
On the men’s side, a large group passed 400m in 59 seconds, 800m in 2:00, but then slowed to 3:03 with 400m remaining. The action heated up at the front with Adrian Blincoe (NZL) going for the long run for home with Andy Baddeley (GBR) and Pan Am Games gold medalist, Josh McAdams(USA) in tow. It was Baddeley using his 1500m World Championship finalsit experience to pull away for the 37th sub-four minute mile at the Armory, winning in 3:59.29. Blincoe finished second in 3:59.98, with Ryan McKenzie (CAN) closing fast for third.
Baddeley, who had won the Edinburgh 4 km last weekend, will join Shobukhova in Boston next weekend where Baddeley is running a very competitive 3000m, while Shobukhova has yet to determine which event she will contest.
Other notable performances included the girls high school 500m where Chanelle Price set a national high school record of 1:10.30. Last year Price, still just 17, reached the final of the U.S championships in the 800m, hopes to make the team to Beijing.
In early season 400m running, Alicia Williams (USA) held off Shevon Stoddart (JAM) 53.33 to 53.51.
Victah Sailer for the IAAF
1. Andy Baddeley GBR 3:59.29
2. Adrian Blincoe NZL 3:59.98
3. Ryan McKenzie GBR 4:00.98
4. Rob Myers USA 4:01.15
5. Josh McAdams USA 4:01.31
1. Liliya Shobukhova RUS 4:31.90
2. Megan Metcalfe CAN 4:32.28
2. Amy Mortimer USA 4:33.34
4. Jen Rhines USA 4:33.42
5. Sara Hall USA 4:33.92
6. Hilary Stellingwerff CAN 4:34.26
7. Carmen Douma-Hussar CAN 4:36.29