Day 1 at Boston nationals: World records by Burke and Hewitt

Ed shows off his gams and golds at Boston.

Tom Petranoff would smile. Remember how he threw the javelin so far in the early 1980s that they changed the specs to make the spear land sooner? Well, they can’t make the 16-pound weight any lighter. But when officials at Boston nationals saw how Olympian Ed Burke was throwing, they avoided bodily harm by switching the weight throw to a “special night session.” So it went as Ed and multi-eventer Bob Hewitt added to their legends and world record citations at indoor nationals. Live results are being posted here. USATF erringly reported that Irene Obera set a W80 world record for 400, but her 1:34.25 was off Emma Mazzenga’s 1:33.14 clocked last week in Padua, Italy. Leland McPhie, our favorite M100 trackster, fell short of Everett Hosack’s listed WRs in the 12-pound weight and 35-pound superweight. Leland threw 2.77 meters and 1.35, compared with the late Everett’s 5.10 and 2.21. But Saturday’s events should produce a first-ever M100 high jump record at the Reggie. Irene’s 1:34 is still amazing — worth an open mark of 49.85. Ye gawd!

Here’s a news release produced by Bob Weiner’s crew:

BOSTON, Mass. – UPDATE: Three-time Olympian Ed Burke, the US flagbearer at the 1984 Olympics, broke the world record for men 70-74 three times in the 16-pound weight throw with a toss of 20.93 meters/68 ft. 8 inches in a special night session at the USA Masters Indoor Track Championships in Boston. [Listed M70 WR is 19.64 by American Robert Ward in 2005.] The special session, at the conclusion of the day’s events, ensure safety at the track, because of Burke’s distances. The throwing area was reconfigured to allow for the record throws. Burke, 74, from Los Gatos, CA, broke the existing record three times. Burke said he is “very pleased with the result. I did it because I stayed healthy. Masters track is a wonderful, motivating outlet. Proper preparation played into it. I started in November throwing heavy weights. Masters track is a wonderful, motivating outlet.”

Also at the 2014 USA Masters Indoor Track & Field Championships today, Irene Obera (Fremont, Calif.), on the meet’s first day, obliterated the world W80 400 meter mark by over 20 seconds minute and the US mark by almost a half minute. The Fremont, Calif. native isn’t done yet, as she competes in the women’s 60m, 200m and shot put over the next two days. Though she hadn’t competed in a nationals for three years, she said she had so much fun that she announced her intention to compete in this summer’s July 17-20 outdoor USA Masters Championships in Winston-Salem, NC.

Another world record was set Friday, as Robert Hewitt (Gresham, Ore.) turned in a score of 4,349 points in the M80 pentathlon, shattering the previous record [3879 by Italy’s Bruno Sobrero in 2001] by nearly 500 points. Hewitt bested the field of M70-84 competitors in the long jump (4.00m – 1,048 pts) and put forth top-two finishes in the 60mH (11.72 – 979 pts), shot put (9.64m – 814 pts) and high jump (1.23m – 915 pts) to position himself within striking distance of the record. Hewitt needed just 123 points to set the new world record and did just that, registering a 5:14.95 finish in the 1,000m for 593 points.

Nolan Shaheed (Pasadena, Calif.), 64, was tremendous in the M60-64 3,000 meters, besting the field by nearly a minute and crossing in 10:23.42. This is the first of three events for Shaheed in Boston, competing in the 800m and the mile later in the meet.

Wayne Sabin (Milwaukie, Ore.), 80, set a new American record in the super weight throw (25 lb), tossing a mark of 9.01m/29-6.75. [Beating the listed AR of 7.94 (26-0) by Val McGann in 2008.]

Leland McPhie, a World War II veteran and former San Diego sheriff captain who turned 100 March 10, competed in the men’s weight throw and super weight throw. McPhie (San Diego, Calif.), a fan favorite at the meet, will also compete in the men’s high jump and shot put on Saturday afternoon. As the first centenarian ever to compete in the indoor high jump, McPhie would set the world mark in the event.

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March 15, 2014

5 Responses

  1. Levasseur - March 15, 2014

    Hello Nolan
    Well done, last month I ran the 3k in 10’52 at Nat French
    I would have been a nice target for your last lap.

  2. Peter Taylor. - March 15, 2014

    Well, it got a little complicated with Irene Obera’s apparent W80 world mark in the 400, and I didn’t do a good job of explaining things over the microphone. Irene did break the listed world record, but Emma Mazzenga ran a slightly faster time last week.

    As we have the “pending” designation for American records but not for world marks, it’s a little hard to describe a mark such as Mazzenga’s. In addition, we have no idea of whether Mazzenga’s time will be accepted.

    I expect Irene to break the American and possibly the world record in the 60 today, and there I don’t think we have the problem of possibly better marks out there.

    Tomorrow we have the 200, and again we have the “Mazzenga problem” (better time than the existing world mark). In conclusion, I wouldn’t be quite so tough on USATF regarding its reporting of Irene’s 400, as all we can really go on are the listed marks.

  3. Ken Stone - March 15, 2014

    NBC Sports site linked to my wife’s 2007 profile of Leland McPhie in the U-T:

  4. Weia Reinboud - March 15, 2014

    Unfortunately no height for our oldest high jumper ever. He tried 0.62.

  5. Cornell - March 15, 2014

    Congrats to all of my friends and competitors. Set some more records on Sunday!

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