Wednesday, February 28, 2024

TSX BULLETIN: World indoor marks for Charlton and Kerr at fab Millrose, U.S. records for Monson, Fisher and St. Pierre! – The Sports Examiner

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Josh Kerr (GBR) won the Worlds 1,500 m last year and got the indoor two-mile world record at Millrose! (Photo: Stephen Pond/Getty Images for World Athletics)

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There was great anticipation for possible world records at the 116th Millrose Games in New York on Sunday, but in the first event on the track? That’s what happened, along with another world mark, three American Records and world-leading performances in six events:

Men/Mile: 3:47.83, Yared Nuguse (USA)
Men/Two Mile: 8:00.67, Josh Kerr (GBR) ~ World Record

Women/60 m: 6.99, Julien Alfred (LCA)
Women/Mile: 4:16.41, Elle St. Pierre (USA) ~ American Record
Women/Two Mile: 9:04.84, Laura Muir (GBR)
Women/60 m hurdles: 7.67, Devynne Charlton (BAH) ~ World Record

In the first elite event on the track, Charlton was out fast and had the lead at the first hurdle against an excellent field that included world leader Tia Jones of the U.S. Jones came on as did Jamaica’s two-time World 100 m hurdles Champion Danielle Williams, but they could not dent the lead and she crossed in a world record of 7.67, busting the 2008 mark of 7.68 by Susanna Kallur (SWE). Williams and Jones went 2-3 in 7.79. Wow!

In the women’s 60 m, Alfred took the world lead with a powerful performance right from the start and ran away from everyone in 6.99, her fourth-fastest indoor 60 m ever. Jamaica’s Shashalee Forbes was a distant second at 7.14.

American distance star Alicia Monson took over the two-mile once the pacing ended and led British star Laura Muir at the mile in 4:35.40. Ethiopian teen Melknat Wudu came up to challenge Monson and then Muir took over with 300 m to go. At the bell, it was Muir, 19-year-old Medina Eisa (ETH) and Wudu as Monson fell back, and then Eisa shot back Muir for the win in the final 50 m in 9:04.39, moving her to no. 2 all-time!

But Eisa was subsequently disqualified for an improper move that cut off another runner. So Muir ended up the winner with a national record of 9:04.84 (now no. 2 all-time) and Wudu moved up to second in 9:07.12 (no. 4 all-time). Monson got third and an American Record of 9:09.70 (no. 5 all-time), moving aside Elle St. Pierre’s 9:10.28 from 2021.

The men’s two-mile had record aspirations, with World 1,500 m champ Josh Kerr (GBR) and 2022 Worlds 10,000 m fourth-place Grant Fisher of the U.S. at the front of the pack. Fisher passed 1 1/4 miles in the lead with Kerr just behind and well clear of the rest of the field. Kerr took over with 300 m left and was clear of Fisher at the bell and charged home – raising his hand to the crowd with 50 m to go – and winning in a world record of 8:00.67, shattering British icon Mo Farah’s 8:03.40 time from 2015.

Fisher was second in 8:03.62 and claimed the American Record, displacing Galen Rupp’s 8:07.41 from 2014. Fisher is now no. 3 all-time and Cole Hocker of the U.S. finished third in 8:05.70 to move to no. 6 all-time. New Zealand’s George Beamish was fourth in 8:05.73 and now ranks seventh on the all-time list.

Australian Jessica Hull, the world leader at 3,000 m, took over the women’s Wanamaker Mile with a half-mile to go, trailed closely by American Record holder St. Pierre, who took the lead at the bell. St. Pierre opened up a 5 m lead with a half-lap left and steamed home in a world-leading 4:16.41, breaking her own U.S. mark of 4:16.85 from 2020. Hull got a national record of 4:19.03. St. Pierre stays at no. 3 all-time and Hull is now no. 10.

The men’s Wanamaker Mile was another world-record attempt, especially after the U.S.’s Yared Nuguse ran the no. 2 time in indoor history in 3:47.38 last year. This time, Nuguse was tracked early by World Road Mile champ Hobbs Kessler and Britain’s George Mills, with pacer Derek Holdsworth (USA) passing 440 yards in 55.64 and 880 yards in 1:52.28. Nuguse took over with four laps left, and passed the 1320 mark in 2:51.87, slowing to a 59.38 quarter.

Mills passed Kessler at the bell and Nuguse hit the gas and moved away to win decisively in 3:47.83, the no. 3 performance in history. Kessler came back to pass Mills on the final straight to get second in 3:48.66, now, the sixth-fastest indoor mile ever – at 20 – and now the no. 4 performer ever. Mills was third in 3:48.93, now no. 6 ever. Nuguse covered the final quarter in 55.96.

Everyone expected super-starter Christian Coleman – the world-record holder – to get out quick in the men’s 60 m, but Japan’s Hakim Sani Brown actually had the early lead. But Coleman came on and had the race in hand in the final 10 m and won in 6.51, equal-seventh in the world for 2024, but a good warm-up for next week’s USATF Nationals in Albuquerque. Sani Brown held fast for second n 6.54, equaling his lifetime best.

Bryce Hoppel came from behind in the men’s 800 m, moving past Kenyan Noah Kibet, the 2022 World Indoor runner-up, coming into the final straight and won in 1:45.54, to move to no. 7 on the year list. Kibet was second in 1:46.09 with Mark English (IRL) third in 1:46.61.

The men’s 60 m hurdles was a shocker, with Dylan Beard, who only got to the semis at the USATF outdoor champs in 2023, coming hard off the final hurdle to win in 7.44, moving to equal-third on the 2024 world list. He beat some big names, including 2023 Worlds bronze winner Daniel Roberts (7.51) and 2022 Worlds runner-up Trey Cunningham (7.52).

The men’s vault was down to Olympic silver winner Chris Nilsen and American Record man KC Lightfoot at 5.92 m (19-1), and neither could go higher, with Nilsen winning on the countback.

American Talitha Diggs – a Worlds 400 m finalist last year – came off the final turn and shot past Ireland’s Worlds 400 m fourth-placer Rhasidat Adeleke to win in 36.21 to 36.42. It’s Diggs’ second-fastest ever at the distance.

Former Stanford All-American Olivia Baker sprang into the lead at the bell in the women’s 800 m and it looked like Tokyo Olympic 800 m bronzer Raevyn Rogers was ready to strike off the final turn, but it was emerging star Allie Wilson who came back on the final straight to win in 2:01.61, ahead of Baker (2:01.91) with Rogers fading to sixth (2:02.49).

World Champion Yaroslava Mahuchikh (UKR) and 2016 World Indoor champ Vashti Cunningham of the U.S. were the only ones left by 1.97 m (6-5 1/2) and Mahuchikh cleared cleanly on her first try and Cunningham got over on her third. At 2.00 m (6-6 3/4), Cunningham missed, but Mahuchikh got over on her third to win her sixth straight meet dating back to 2023.

Next week: the USATF Indoor Nationals, which will be the selection meet for the World Indoors in Glasgow in March.

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