April 26, 2012
Entries and Live Results | Meet Schedule (Updated 4/28) | Live Coverage From Flotrack |
Stanford Men's All-Time Top-10 | Stanford Women's All-Time Top-10 |
STANFORD, Calif. - Sunday will mark another edition of the Payton Jordan Invitational with this year bringing even more intrigue since it is an Olympic Year. The evening distance carnival will be a who's who of distance superstars as attempts at Olympic Standards and various records will be on tap.
The meet known for its perfect conditions for fast times will begin with the field events at 1pm, while the first running events will begin at 3:20pm. The highlight of the meet is always the evening distance carnival and this year will be no different as hundreds of athletes will compete in what likely will be the fastest meet run on American soil this year. The distance carnival begins at 5:40pm, although the top events will be a bit later.
Stanford will run many of its top athletes, but Chris Derrick will be the focus as he runs the top section of the 10,000 meters. Derrick has a 10K personal best of 28:26.65, but will be expected to shatter that on Sunday evening. The Olympic `A' Standard in the event is 27:45.00, while the Stanford record of Ian Dobson is 27:59.72.
Derrick will face top competition in the 10,000 with several top athletes from around the World. Derrick is one of just four collegians in the event, while the rest are pros. Former NCAA Champions Sam Chelanga and Allistar Cragg, World Championship qualifier Scott Bauhs and a host of top athletes from around the World will provide what surely will be one of the fastest races in the world this year.
The rest of the men's distance carnival will have equal intrigue. The top section of the 3,000-meter steeplechase features most of America's top hopes to make the Olympic team, as each will likely be looking to earn the `A' Standard so they can move their focus to the Olympic Trials.
The men's 5,000 meters features two Stanford alums who have Olympic dreams, Ian Dobson who made the 2008 Olympic team and Garrett Heath, who will likely move to the 1,500 meters at the 2012 Olympic Trials.
In the 1,500 meters, Alan Webb continues to look to regain his form that made him the top American in the event a few years ago. Lawi Lelang of Arizona will also look to tune up as he chases more NCAA titles this spring, having already won three in cross country and indoor track this year.
Other Cardinal men competing in top events, include Michael Atchoo and Tyler Stutzman in the second section of the 1,500 meters. Both are threats to score at the NCAA meet with Stutzman coming off double victories in the 800 and 1,500 meters at the Big Meet two weeks ago. In addition, Brendan Gregg and Miles Unterreiner will run the second section of the 5,000 meters and both have NCAA experience.
On the women's side, the featured event is probably the 5,000 meters. Sally Kipyego of the Oregon Track Club is already the World leader in the 1,500 meters, but will move up to what is actually her better distance. The event also features U.S. OIympian and Bay Area native Shannon Rowburry as well as top collegians Jordan Hasay of Oregon and Deborah Maier of Cal.
Stanford's top athlete is Kathy Kroeger will run the second section of the 5K. Kroeger should have a chance to run at the front of that heat rather than chase the top pros in the first section. She is an All-American in the event and looking to better her personal best of 15:45.55.
Other top events include the 1,500 meters where former Stanford record holder Malindi Elmore will compete against top competition, including one of the top Americans in the event, Brenda Martinez.
In the steeplechase, Stanford grad Sara Hall (formerly Sara Bei) might be the favorite as she takes on top competition that hopes to lead to an `A' Standard and a shot at joining her husband and fellow Stanford grad Ryan Hall on the Olympic Team.
Finally, in the Kim McDonald 10,000 meters, Desiree Davila will tune up, having already made the Olympic team in the marathon. She will face a deep field that includes former NCAA Champion Lisa Uhl among others.
While the Payton Jordan Invitational is not as well known for its sprinting and field events, both will provide plenty of intrigue as well. Amaechi Morton will run the open 400 meters where he has a personal best of 46.16 from the indoor season. The Cardinal record is 45.85 set way back in 1994 by Rene Rodriguez. Perhaps Morton can add an open 400-meter record to go with his school record in the 400-meter hurdles.
It will also be a chance to see possibly the world's greatest athlete, Aston Eaton. Eaton was the silver medalist in the decathlon at the 2011 World Championships, but just last month broke the World Record in the indoor heptathlon on his way to gold medal at the 2012 World Indoor Championships. He is entered in the 100 meters and 100-meter hurdles as well as the pole vault, long jump, discus and javelin.
On the women's side, Kori Carter will look to improve her school record of 57.10 in the 400-meter hurdles, but will have good competition from teammates Katie Nelms and Kala Stepter.
In the field, Stanford will have a pair of current student-athletes with Olympic aspirations competing. Greek Olympic hopeful Katerina Stefanidi will compete in the pole vault, while Arantxa King will compete in the long jump, hoping to secure her spot on the Bermuda Olympic Team.
The Payton Jordan Invitational will be broadcast live on Flotrack.org for those unable to make it out to Cobb Track and Angell Field.