Wednesday, June 6, 2007

American 1500m Record in Jeopardy?

Is Mary Decker's nearly 24 year old American 1500m record of 3:57.12 in jeopardy at the Pre Classic this Saturday? If it were up to Treniere Clement and Shayne Culpepper, it would be. Right now, though, both are more worried about how they're going to beat Yuliya Chizhenko-Fomenko of Russia and Gelete Burka of Ethiopia. Chizhenko-Fomenko's PB of 3:55.68 is going to be tough to top in this early-season race, but she's certainly capable of running sub 4 and is expected to do so.

Culpepper got outkicked by Kenia Sinclair at the adidas Track Classic on May 21st while setting a PB of 4:05.98. She looked like she was straining a little in last week's 3rd place run at the Reebok Grand Prix, running a 4:08.07. Could it be that she had been training hard that week and just didn't have anything left in the tank? She'll certainly need to fill her tank by this Saturday.

As for Clement, she ran a strong 800m at Reebok with a time 1:59.07. Her PB in the metric mile is 4:03.32 which she ran in Rieti, Italy in 2006. She should do well and could certainly best her PB.

Don't count out Shalane Flanagan, either. Although her PB is only 4:09.27, she's been setting American Records all over the place this year in the longer events. Beating her PB by over 9 seconds is a tall order, but not out of the realm of possibility. Should be an exciting race.

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