TrackTown, USA: Day Three? Seemed like Day 30 already! At least we have figured-out dinner at 9p is not a good idea, so we had a late lunch at Agate Alley with Mary and Steve before heading over to the track. Dave and I split a Reuben made with lamb pastrami. Delicious. After lunch, we walked (2 blocks) to Historic Hayward Field and situated ourselves in our hospitality venue, because it held a perfect view to the hammer throw just outside the stadium. (Way too dangerous to throw the hammer inside the stadium! It is in a completely enclosed netted cage. Think batting cage, except the ball weighs 16 pounds - and is metal.)
The hammer cage was designed by Lance Deal, long-time American-record holder in the hammer. Deal's record fell today when Rudy Winkler threw a monster:
Now that is a great way to start a day of track & field! (Sorry, Lance, you know we love you.)
Before going to our seats, Dave and I walked over to catch a bit of the decathletes competing in the pole vault:
The big event tonight was the women's 400m final. Would Allyson Felix make her 5th Olympic team? Of course she did! Felix was second, behind Quanera Hayes. Wadeline Jonathas took third. All three women ran a season-best time this evening, have the Olympic standard, and will go to Tokyo. Too bad it wasn't Mother's Day today - Felix and Hayes had their toddlers down on the track after their victories, much to the delight of the fans.
Quanera Hayes brought her son along for her victory lap. Later he was seen racing across the finish line and leaning-in as if breaking the tape. Future track star?
The men's team for the 400m will be Michael Norman, Michael Cherry, and Randolph Ross. The men and women in this event will also be availed for the 4x400 relay squads.
110m hurdle winner, Keni Harrison, was interviewed at the finish line by Sasha Spencer. A long-time fan favorite, Harrison won the final in 12.47 - a season-best attempt for her.
I just love the final event of the decathlon - the 1500m. Imagine competing for two days in 9 different disciplines - running, jumping, throwing - and then need to run a mile. Brutal. The decathletes collapse into piles at the finish line, embracing each other. Then they take a victory lap together, and bow and wave to thank the fans. Love it! Garrett Scantling won the decathlon with 8647, Steven Bastian was second with 8485 points, Zach Ziemek (known as Double Z) was third with 8471.
The final event of the meet tonight was the men's 100m. Who will be the fastest American?
A true come-back story!
After the meet, Captain Smith treated us all to drinks at a local hang-out and we called it a night. Until my next update, I remain, your happy-but-tired correspondent.