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Greene and Jones in world leading relay action – USA take double match win in Munich

Munich, GermanyThe threenation “Team Challenge” at Munich’s Olympic Stadium represented the final major athletics contest prior to the beginning of the Olympic Games, and many notables from Germany, France, and United States took this opportunity to have their final dress rehearsal for Athens. 

Crowd roar home Herms 

Under mostly clear skies and a temperature of 27C, the 18,500 spectators gave their biggest noise of the day to the spectacular 1:44.14 run by René Herms in the men’s 800 metres. The 22-year-old German had a perfect set-up for the race of his life, as former World Indoor 800 champion David Krummenacker (USA) set a 50.75 pace for the first 400, whereupon the other American, Athens-bound Khadevis Robinson, took over the lead on the final back stretch. 

As Herms and Robinson came off the final curve together, the German seized the moment, using his long stride to his advantage, and streaked home more than a second better than his previous PB, as Robinson’s second-place performance was also an outstanding 1:44.93. 

Herms’ time was only one-half second outside the 21-year-old German record Willi Wülbeck established in winning the first World Championships in Helsinki.  Ironically, Herms had been in Zürich two days ago with the expectation of running in the B-race there, but eventually he was denied a starting place.  The extra rest obviously was beneficial. 

Colander beaten by Félix 

For the first time since winning the women’s 100 metres final at the US Trials, LaTasha Colander emerged from a period of inactivity.  After a mediocre start, Colander moved up to join the front-running group, but she could not overtake France’s Sylviane Félix who won in 11.16 to Colander’s 11.20. Wylleshia Myrick took third in 11.30. 

Wariner - sixth sub-45 run of the season 

Jeremy Wariner was also seeing a track for the first time since his US Trials win in the men’s 400 metres, and he showed that the rest period has served his purpose well. The slim 20-year-old blasted away from the start and ran his usual hard opening 200 before coasting home an easy winner on the windy track in 44.91 - his sixth sub-45 of the season - while shutting down his sprint five metres before the finish.  The other American, Otis Harris, took second in 45.55, ahead of France’s Ahmed Douhou (45.86) and reigning European champion Ingo Schultz of Germany (45.93).

Jones doubles 

Also re-emerging for the first time since the US Trials - and making a double appearance here - was Marion Jones.  She led a one-two US finish in the women’s Long Jump with 6.82, against a 1.6 wind, as Grace Upshaw finished second in a wind-aided 6.74.  Such were the wind dances all day long. 

Three relay world season leads 

Shortly after completing the Long Jump, Jones ran as part of the USA’s “A” 4x100m relay which executed three perfect handoffs and clocked a world-leading 41.67. 

Maurice Greene also brought the men’s 4x100 relay to a world-leading performance, repeatedly signalled to the crowd while completing a 37.92 performance. 

The US continued the “world-leading” theme in the women’s 4x400 relay, but it was the “B” team of Moushauni Robinson, LaShinda Demus, Sheena Johnson and Monique Henderson which took the win in 3:20.88, as the US “A” quartet was just a breath behind at 3:20.91. Henderson overtook Sanya Richards five metres before the finish for the “upset”. 

Only the Men’s 4x400 Relay failed to eclipse the previous season best, but the 3:00.58 by the US “A” team was still top-drawer. 

8.20 for Phillips 

One of the biggest names to make the Munich stopover enroute to Athens was World champion Dwight Phillips (USA).  The world leader in the men’s Long Jump with a remarkable 8.60 in Linz last week, Phillips had no bonafide rival here today.  He opened with 8.14 and extended his lead to 8.20 on his second jump, before passing and then fouling his fourth and final attempt. The victory perhaps was closer than Phillips had expected, however, as France’s Kafetien Gomis leaped 8.02 on his final attempt for second. 

Acuff's over 2m 

Amy Acuff's  stock took a big boost after her second-attempt 2.00 in the Women’s High Jump, as she joins the elite group of six other jumpers having reached the benchmark height this year.  The American had already won the competition at 1.95, ahead of teammate Chaunte Howard, who finished second with 1.93.  Acuff then ended the competition with three unsuccessful jumps at 2.04. 

For Acuff, it was the completion of unfinished business this weekend.  “I was so close to two metres in Zürich,” she said, “but today I felt worse, very stiff at the beginning.  But then it started going better and better.  I was very tired when I tried 2.04, but my personal best is 2.01 and I know that I will jump that soon.”

Hoffa heaves shot to 21.17

Reece Hoffa put on a brilliant display in the Men’s Shot put, ending the competition with 21.17, three centimetres farther than he threw at the US Trials to earn an Olympic team spot. The US giant had led from the outset, leading off with 20.46 and then improving slightly to 20.50 before unleashing his big throw.  Germany’s Ralf Bartels moved close to Hoffa with a second-round 20.39, but he could not improve during the remaining rounds. 

Germany’s Carolin Hingst solved what appeared to be a formidable headwind in the women’s Pole Vault to leap 4.62 for a win before closing out with three misses at 4.72.  Her teammate, Floé Kühnert, was a distant second at 4.32, the same height jumped by France’s Vanessa Boslak in third. 

Emotion for Ecker 

If there was an emotional moment to the afternoon, it came with Danny Ecker’s win in the men’s Pole Vault.  Denied a chance to compete at the European Championships here two years ago because of a shoulder injury, the 27-year-old German vaulted a season-best-equalling 5.72 to emerge a victor in the stadium where his mother, Heide Rosendahl-Ecker, won two Olympic gold medals thirty-two years ago.  Ecker was pushed to the limit by fellow German Tim Lobinger, who placed second on misses at 5.72. 

Crawford versus Capel - 100m

The men’s 100 metres was, as expected, a showdown between the US sprinters.  John Capel was away from the blocks marginally quicker than Shawn Crawford, but Crawford accelerated well throughout the race and came up with a narrow wind-aided win, 10.14 to Capel’s 10.16.  The rest of the field was far out-of-touch, with Germany’s Alexander Kosenkow taking third in 10.37. 

After Crystal Cox of the US had set the pace through the opening half of the women’s 400 metres, her teammate Suziann Reid took over, running the final curve well despite being in the inside-most lane and sprinting home in 50.79.  Cox staged a mini-comeback at the end, clocking 51.00 for second, more than a second ahead of France’s Solene Desert (52.14) in third. 

Hazel Clark was wearing the wrong start number, but that was the only mistake she made in her wire-to-wire win in the women’s 800 metres, a 2:02.25 performance which held off the fast finish of the French duo of Laetitia Valdonado (2:02.59) and Elisabeth Grousselle (2:02.72). 

Nadine Kleinert of Germany won the Women’s Shot Put with 19.27 ahead of her teammate, three-time World champion Astrid Kumbernuss (18.92).

Riedel - little competition

Five-time World champion in the Men’s Discus, Lars Riedel of Germany, had little competition in winning that event with 65.77, as American Ian Waltz was more than three and one-half metres back in second at 62.19. 

Joanna Hayes got off to a good start in the women’s 100m Hurdles, but Kirsten Bolm - fresh from her PB 12.80 in Zürich Friday night - was able to use the American as a pacemaker.  The tall German was rapidly chewing up Hayes’ advantage when the finish line came, as the American won in a slightly wind-aided (2.1) 12.61 to Bolm’s 12.66.  Reina-Flor Okori of France took third in 12.72. 

Clear 70.04 win for Heider 

Five of the seven contestants in the Women’s Hammer came to Munich with season bests over seventy metres, but it took Betty Heider of Germany only 70.04 to claim a win, with US Trials champion Erin Gilreath second with a distant 68.61.  Notably off the mark was Paris bronze medallist Manuela Montebrun of France, who was only fifth at 66.43. 

Charlie Gruber of the US took the lead with 600 metres remaining in the Men’s 1500 and held off determined finishes by teammate Rob Myers and France’s Kader Chekhémani for a 3:43.89 win.  Myers clocked 3:44.02 and Chekhémani 3:45.85 for the next two places.  Germany’s Wolfram Müller, possessor of a 3:36.17 earlier this year, set the pace for the first half of the race but appeared surprisingly ineffectual, showing no fight and finishing last in 3:53.90. 

Ed Gordon for the IAAF 

The final team results were:

Men’s match - 1. USA 90.5;  2. GER 62;  3. FRA 42.5
Women’s match - 1. USA 82.5;  2. FRA 60.5;  3. GER 57

Selected RESULTS

100m (Wind+2.9 sec)
1 Crawford, Shawn USA 10,14 
2 Capel, John USA 10,16 
3 Kosenkow, Alexander GER 10,37 
 B-race (+0.6) 
1 Edwards, Rae  USA  10,26  
2 Alerte, David  FRA  10,29  
3 Delphine, Eddy  FRA  10,39  
4 Broening, Marius  GER  10,43  
5 Ernst, Sebastian  GER  10,45  

1 Wariner, Jeremy USA 44,91 
2 Harris, Otis USA 45,55 
3 Douhou, Ahmed FRA 45,86 
4 Schultz, Ingo GER 45,93 
5 Faller, Ruwen GER 46,68 
6 Foucan, Marc FRA 47,50 
 B Race 
1 Willy, Kelly  USA  45,29   
2 Steele, Adam  USA  46,46  

1 Herms, Rene GER 1:44.14 
2 Robinson, Khadevis USA 1:44.93 
3 Krummenacker, David USA 1:46.51 
4 Motchebon, Nico GER 1:47.62 
5 Lomba, Jimmy FRA 1:47.91 
1 Gruber, Charlie USA 3:43.89 
2 Myers, Rob USA 3:44.02 
3 Chekhemani, Kader FRA 3:45.85 
110m Hürden  (+3.0)
1 Bramlett, Ron USA 13,36 
2 Fenner, Mike GER 13,56 
3 Hughes, Robert USA 13,61 
4 Denis, Sebastien FRA 13,70 
5 Lavanne, Cederic FRA 13,77 
Pole Vault
1 Ecker, Daniel GER 5,72 
2 Lobinger, Tim GER 5,72 
3 Harvey, Tye USA 5,52 
3 Mesnil, Romain FRA 5,52 
Long Jump
1 Phillips, Dwight  USA  8,20  +0.9  
2 Gomis, Kafetien  FRA  8,02  +1.7  
3 Winter, Nils  GER  7,85  +2.2  
4 Bangue, Emmanuel  FRA  7,72  +0.7  
1 Hoffa, Reece  USA  21,17  
2 Bartels, Ralf  GER  20,39  
3 Sack, Peter  GER  19,67  
4 Beyer, Jamie  USA  19,59
5 Bock, Detlef  GER  19,27    
1 Riedel, Lars GER 65,77 
2 Waltz, Jan USA 62,19 
3 Rome, Jarred USA 61,42 
4 Retel, Jean-Claude FRA 60,20 
1 USA I (Crawford, S., Gatlin, J., Miller, C., Greene, M.) USA 37,92
2 USA II (Capel, J., Scott, L., Patton, D., Trammell, T.) USA 38,33
3 USA III (Bramlett, R., Smoots, J., Scales, M., Edwards, R.) USA 38,37
4 GERMANY (Broening, M., Unger, T., Ernst, S., Helmke, T.) GER 38,50
 FRANCE (Krantz, F., Alerte, D., Delphine, E., Nthepe, I.) FRA dns
1 USA I (Rock, A., Harris, O., Wariner, J., Williamson, D.) USA 3:00.58
2 USA II (Carter, J., Taylor, A., Brazell, B., Jackson, B.) USA 3:04.96
3 JAMAICA (Campbell, M., Simpson, B., James, R., Clarke, D.) JAM 3:08.88 

100m  (+1.4)
1 Felix, Sylvianne FRA 11,16 
2 Colander, Latasha USA 11,20 
3 Myrick, Wylleshia USA 11,30 
4 Mang, Veronique FRA 11,39 
5 Rockmeier, Birgit GER 11,59 
6 Wakan, Katja GER 11,66 
 B race (-1.0) 
1 Moore, Connie USA 11,61 

1 Reid, Suziann USA 50,79 
2 Cox, Crystal USA 51,00 
3 Desert, Solene FRA 52,14 
4 Marx, Claudia GER 52,43 
5 Anacharsis, Phara FRA 53,16 
6 Hoffmann, Claudia GER 53,47 
 B Race
1 Dunn, Debbie  USA  51,58  
2 Davis, Kia  USA  52,86  
3 Urbansky, Ulrike  GER  53,18 

1 Clark, Hazel USA 2:02.25 
2 Valdonado, Laetitia FRA 2:02.59 
3 Grousselle, Elisabeth FRA 2:02.72 
4 Gesell, Claudia GER 2:03.65 

100m Hürden (+2.1)
1 Hayes, Joanna USA 12,61 
2 Bolm, Kirsten GER 12,66 
3 Okori, Reina-Flor FRA 12,72 
4 McIntosh, Raasin USA 12,91 
5 Ferga-Khodadin, Linda FRA 12,94 
6 Hentschke, Nadine GER 13,00 
7 Sprenger-Afflerbach, Juliane GER 13,01 

 High Jump
1 Acuff, Amy USA  2,00  
2 Howard, Chaunte  USA  1,93  
3 Niare, Gaelle  FRA  1,93  
4 Friedrich, Ariane  GER  1,90  

Pole Vault
1 Hingst, Carolin  GER  4,62  
2 Kühnert, Floe  GER  4,32  
3 Boslak, Vanessa  FRA  4,32  
4 Suttle, Kelly  USA  4,22  
5 Genevrier, Elise  FRA  4,02  
5 Sauer, Mary  USA  4,02  

Long Jump
1 Jones, Marion USA 6,82 -1.6 
2 Upshaw, Grace USA 6,74 +3.7 
3 Kappler, Bianca GER 6,60 +0.9 
4 Caster, Nadine FRA 6,46 +1.8 
5 Vesanes, Elyse FRA 6,42 +1.2 
6 McKinney, Akiba USA 6,32 +1.2 

1 Kleinert, Nadine GER 19,27 
2 Kumbernuss, Astrid GER 18,29 
3 Heaston, Kristin USA 18,13 
4 Manfredi, Laurence FRA 17,59 
5 Beckel, Nadine GER 17,48 
6 Camarena, Jill USA 17,28 
7 Cerival, Jessica FRA 16,36 

1 Heidler, Betty  GER  70,04  
2 Gilreath, Erin  USA  68,61  
3 Bunjes, Andrea  GER  68,30  
4 Norgren-Mahon, Anna  USA  66,87  
5 Montebrun, Manuela  FRA  66,43

1 USA I (Williams, A., Jones, M., Williams, L., Colander, L.)  USA  41,67 
2 USA II (Daigle, A., Felix, A., Durst, S., Moore, L.)  USA  42,65 
3 FRANCE (Mang, V., Dia, F., Felix, S., Beret-Martinec)  FRA  42,84 
4 GERMANY (Hentschke, N., Wakan, K., Rockmeier, B., Wagner, M.)  GER  43,75 

1 USA II (Robinson, M., Demus, L., Johnson, S., Henderson, M.) USA 3:20.88
2 USA I (Trotter, D., Hennagan, M., Miles-Clark, J., Richards, S.) USA 3:20.91
3 JAMAICA (Smith, R., Burgher, M., Parris, D., Williams, N.) JAM 3:25.33
4 USA III (Davis, K., Washington, D., Barber, M., Dunn, D.) USA 3:25.86
 USA IV (McIntosh, R., Clark, H., Bennett, K., Reid, S.) USA dns 

Men –

Three-Event Competition

1 McMullin, Phil USA 48,71 
2 Schönbeck, Florian GER 46,79 
3 Leyckes, Dennis GER 41,56 
4 Drews, Stefan GER 35,92 
110m Hürden (+3.0)
1 Drews, Stefan  GER  14,20  
2 Schönbeck, Florian  GER  14,45  
3 McMullen, Phil  USA  14,52  
4 Leyckes, Dennis  GER  14,55  
 200m (-3.2)
1 Drews, Stefan  GER  22,19  
2 Leyckes, Dennis  GER  22,55  
3 Schönbeck, Florian  GER  22,61  
4 McMullen, Phil  USA  23,32  

Final Points Total
1 McMullen, Phil  USA  1752  
2 Schönbeck, Florian  GER  1721  
3 Leyckes, Dennis  GER  1601  
4 Drews, Stefan  GER  1531