News05 Feb 2015

Loaded fields at Millrose Games


David Oliver and Jason Richardson in the sprint hurdles (© Getty Images)

A plethora of leading athletes – who, between them, have won 34 gold medals at senior global championships – will compete at the NYRR Millrose Games on 14 February in New York.

The men’s 60m hurdles field in particular is packed with talent as it contains four global champions. World 110m hurdles champion David Oliver will take on world and Olympic decathlon champion Ashton Eaton, 2011 world champion Jason Richardson and world indoor champion Omo Osaghae.

Also lining up for the sprint hurdles will be Aleec Harris, Jeff Porter, Jarret Eaton and Greggmar Swift.

“What could be better than the in-form Ashton Eaton, the world’s greatest athlete, taking on two world champions David Oliver and Jason Richardson in the 60m hurdles?” said meeting director Ray Flynn.

Eaton will double up in the long jump, in which he will face 2012 world indoor triple jump champion Will Claye, while his wife Brianne Theisen Eaton will contest the 60m hurdles against NCAA champion Sharika Nelvis.

Olympic 400m champion Sanya Richards-Ross, having not competed indoors since 2012, will line up against NCAA indoor champion and US indoor record-holder Phyllis Francis over two laps of the track.

Elsewhere in the sprints, world indoor silver medallist Marvin Bracy will take on Chinese record-holder Su Bingtian, Olympic finalist Ryan Bailey and up-and-coming Canadian sprinter Akeem Haynes in the men’s 60m.

The women’s 60m features two-time world indoor bronze medallist Tianna Bartoletta, three-time Olympic finalist Muna Lee, double world silver medallist Murielle Ahoure and Trinidad and Tobago’s national record-holder Michelle-Lee Ahye.

Fresh from playing a part in the distance medley relay world indoor best, Mike Berry steps up to the rarely run 500m, lining up against former world 400m hurdles champion Bershawn Jackson, world indoor bronze medallist Kyle Clemons and Belgian record-holder Jonathan Borlee.

Lagat aiming for ninth mile win

The Wanamaker Mile is a permanent fixture at the Millrose Games. So too is Bernard Lagat, so it seems, having won the race eight times.

Now aged 40, the three-time world indoor champion will seek an unprecedented ninth win, but he faces a strong field which includes the likes of world silver medallist Matt Centrowitz, Olympic silver medallist Leo Manzano, US steeplechase record-holder Evan Jager, 2008 Olympic silver medallist Nick Willis, NCAA champion Lawi Lalang, and last year’s winner Will Leer.

The line-up for the women’s mile is also strong. It contains current world leader Shannon Rowbury, world junior 300m champion Mary Cain, 2011 Diamond Race winner Morgan Uceny and five-time national champion Treniere Moser.

In the other middle-distance events, former world junior champion Ajee Wilson goes in the women’s 800m, while 2012 world indoor 1500m champion Abdalaati Iguider takes on world and Olympic 800m finalist Duane Solomon as they meet in the middle of their specialist distances to tackle the 1000m.

Galen Rupp’s toughest opposition in the men’s 5000m could come from his own training group. The Olympic 10,000m silver medallist will take on Japanese record-holder Suguru Osako and Canada’s Cam Levins.

World and Olympic silver medallist Sally Kipyego and NCAA cross-country champion Kate Avery will race the women’s 3000m.

Suhr and Williams lead vertical jumps

World indoor pole vault record-holder Jenn Suhr won at the Millrose Games in 2012 before going on to win Olympic gold that year. That was the second of three victories at this meeting for the 33-year-old and she will be looking for another on 14 February when she vaults against compatriot Mary Saxer and European silver medallist Ekaterini Stefanidi.

Jesse Williams, the 2011 world champion, will face 2010 world indoor bronze medallist Dusty Jonas in the high jump.

Organisers and Jon Mulkeen for the IAAF