Nationals return to North Carolina, with many stars in the blocks

My favorite shot from 2006 Charlotte nationals. Yes, hot.

Bob Weiner and his marketing team have produced another detailed preview of nationals, beginning: “More than 40 reigning world masters track and field champions who won gold at the last World Masters indoor or outdoor championships and at least six Olympians will be among over 1100 athletes 30-95+ years old, including the world’s and nation’s best, competing at the USA National Masters Track & Field Championships in Winston-Salem, NC, Thursday through Sunday, July 17-20. The meet will be at WAKE FOREST UNIVERSITY’S Kentner Stadium, 1834 Wake Forest Road.” (But it errs in calling this the first national masters track championship in the region. Charlotte held the meet in 2006, as evidenced by this photo gallery.) At least six Olympians are set for Winston-Salem, including old reliables Ed Burke (throws) and Jim Barrineau (high jump).

Here’s much of the rest of the release:

Many athletes are competing from North Carolina including the Winston-Salem and Greensboro areas. A list of Olympians, national stars, notable local entrants, and others of interest is below. Events will be daily from 7:30 AM through late afternoon at Kentner Stadium. Detailed final schedule and meet information are posted at: http://www.usatf.org/Events—Calendar/2014/USA-Masters-Outdoor-Track—Field-Championships.aspx

A list of events, athletes, their ages, home towns, clubs, and marks may be found at various links developed by LOC organizers Eric Braschwitz (also MTF Media Committee Member), Bonny Bernat of Visit Winston-Salem, and USATF Masters Media Committee Member Jay Wind:
* https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets/d/1gHSxT4ZZ-H6vzKdoYuVGj4HyRxvy1Kgj-GmNKZBnbkE/edit#gid=0
* On http://weinerpublic.com/masters the link appears as Complete list of athletes and events Or https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets/d/1gHSxT4ZZ-H6vzKdoYuVGj4HyRxvy1Kgj-GmNKZBnbkE/edit?pli=1#gid=0

Athletes place in five year age categories. The media is invited for coverage and interviews, and the public is invited to watch the meet onsite at no cost.

WINSTON-SALEM NATIONAL MASTERS NOTABLES 2014
(Notes by Pete Taylor, Meet Announcer and member, National Masters Media Committee)

OLYMPIANS Competing in Winston-Salem:

Ed Burke. Age 74. Los Gatos, California. Hammer, shot put, discus, javelin, weight throw. THREE-TIME OLYMPIAN, and the USA FLAGBEARER at the Los Angeles Olympic Games, 1984, his final Olympics at age 44, already a master. He has not slowed down – he’s entered in five events in Winston Salem and is still setting world and US marks. Ed is currently the world record holder in the 70-74 division for the hammer throw (4 kilograms) with an astonishing 59.04 meters (193 feet, 8 inches). Indoors, in the Indoor USA Masters Championships in March, 2014, he set a world record in the weight throw, and in 2013 in the superweight, he threw further than anyone in history. About Winston Salem, which will be for him a 30th Anniversary of his serving as U.S. Olympic Flagbearer, he told us: “Let the Games begin again.”

Ann Flynn. Age 75. Westport, Connecticut. Ann competed in the high jump for the US in the 1956 Olympics in Australia. In 1959 she took gold in the Pan American Games (high jump). At Winston-Salem, Ann will compete in the shot put, discus, and hammer.

Lorna Forde. Age 62. New York, NY. Entered in the 200 and 400 dashes at Winston-Salem . Lorna competed in the 4 x 400 for Barbados in the 1972 Olympics, and in the 1976 Olympics she represented that country in the 100 and 400 dashes. For years she “owned” the world-famous Penn Relays, and she is on the “Wall of Fame” at Penn. Her lifetime best in the 400 is 51.04 seconds.

Jason Rouser. Age 44. Dade City, Florida. Entered in the 200 and 400 at Winston-Salem. At 6-6 and very fast, Rouser is hard to miss. Jason has a gold medal from the 1996 Olympics for the 4 x 400 relay. His lifetime best for the 400 is 44.77 seconds.

Jim Barrineau. Age 59. Burke, Virginia. Entered in the high jump. Jim, an all-time great at the University of Georgia, finished 11th in the high jump at the 1976 Olympics in Montreal.

Paul Osland. Age 50. Toronto, Ontario, Canada. Paul is entered in the 400, 800, and 1500 at Winston-Salem. In 1988 he represented Canada in the Seoul Olympics, competing in the 800 and the 4 x 400 relay.

OTHER STARS:
Men
Charles Allie:
Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. Age 66. Entered in the 200 dash at Winston-Salem. Allie, out of Hampton Institute (now Hampton University) in Virginia, was selected as World Masters Athletics athlete of the Year for 2013, after he won the 100, 200, and 400 at the 2013 Worlds in Brazil. Charles has the world outdoor marks for 65-69 in both the 200 (24.65) and 400 (56.09).

Nolan Shaheed: Pasadena, California. Turns age 65 on July 18, the second day of the championships. Nolan is entered in the 800, 1500, and 2000-meter steeplechase at Winston-Salem. He is a world class jazz trumpeter (he played lead for Count Basie, Dizzie Gillespie, Stevie Wonder, Marvin Gaye, Natalie Cole, Duke Ellington, Aretha Franklin, and over the past year played on American Idol and The Voice). Nolan is also a world class track performer with numerous world and American records. For example, he has the American indoor records in the 3000 for ages 50-54 (8:54.73), 55-59 (9:10.27), and 60-64 (9:48.84). He ran 2:08.56 in the 800 outdoors at age 61 (a world record) and a 4:50.95 mile indoors on a flat track at age 62 (also a world record). He will be shooting for world and American marks in the 65+. Shaheed equates his excitement from running with his music inspiration, and he performs at top world levels in both.

Bob Lida: Wichita, Kansas. Age 77. Bob is entered in the 100, 200, and 400 at nationals. He is out of Kansas University. As a masters sprinter, he is on the highest rung of superstardom. For 2012 he was selected as the top male masters track athlete in the world. At the 2013 worlds in Brazil, Bob won the 100, 200, and 400, and he holds the world outdoor records in the 75-79 division for 100 (13.49 seconds) and 200 (27.73).

Antwon Dussett: Peoria, Illinois. Age 38. Entered in the 200 and 400 dashes at Winston-Salem. At the 2011 world outdoor masters championships in Sacramento, Antwon took gold in the 400 with a time of 47.34 seconds (and he ran 21.57 in winning the 200). At the 2013 worlds in Brazil, Antwon (at age 38) ran 47.37 to win the gold. Dussett, out of Grambling State University in Louisiana, is the American indoor record holder in the 200 for men 35-39 with 21.67 seconds.

Don Isett: Dallas, Texas. Age 75. At Winston-Salem, Don has entered the high jump and long jump as well as his specialty, the pole vault. The American outdoor record holder for the 70-74 group in the pole vault at 3.24 meters (10 feet, 7 ВЅ inches), Don has the world indoor record for that age group at 3.25 meters (just under 10-8). Now that Don is in 75-79 he should be even more dangerous. The official outdoor world record for this age category is 3.00 meters by Olympian Bud Held, but Don has already jumped 3.23 meters (10-7) as a 75-year-old.

OTHERS TO WATCH:

Oscar Peyton, M61, Accokeek MD, Multiple WORLD Champion Sprinter, performs like the title of his “SpeeDemon” blog, where he describes “my Masters Track & Field journey from couch potato to Masters World Champion”. Has had several classic and historic photo finishes with Bill Collins going both ways.

Robert Thomas, M48, also multiple world medalist and MTF National Vice Chair, whose running and service are both at the top of the sport. He is returning from injury and may once again be at the top of his game.

Women:

Kathy Martin: Northport, Long Island, New York. Age 62. Kathy has an ambitious schedule at Winston-Salem, as she is entered in the 800, 1500, 5000, 10,000, and 2000 steeplechase. Her competitive range defies imagination. Indoors in the 800 she has the American 55-59 mark of 2:31.73 and a pending American mark for the 60-64 group (2:39.41), but outdoors her records go as long as the 50,000 meters (31.07 miles), where she holds the W60 American road record of 3 hrs, 58 minutes, 30 seconds (7:40.6 per mile). In the indoor mile, she owns the world record for 55-59 at 5 minutes, 19.87 seconds and for 60-64 at 5:47.25. Outdoors, her 5:42.65 in the mile is a world record for women 60-64. She has been named many times the Masters Athlete of the Year and is a former BenGay Athlete of the Year.

Myrle Mensey: St. Louis, Missouri. Age 65. Will compete in the shot put and weight throw at Winston-Salem. The 2013 USATF masters athlete of the year in the United States, Myrle is shattering records. At Budapest in the world indoor masters earlier this year, Myrle threw the weight 16.91 meters (55 feet, 5.75 inches) to establish a world record for the 65-69 age group. People are wondering how many W65 marks will she surpass during her stay in this age group? Earlier this year, at Raleigh, she broke three American records in a single meet: in the throws pentathlon, the superweight, and the weight throw. In the weight throw the listed mark of 13.04 meters had held up for 9 years; Myrle threw 16.24.

Irene Obera: Fremont, California. Age 80. Entered in the 100, 200, 400, shot put, and long jump. A member of the original class in the USA Masters Hall of Fame, Irene could set world records at Winston-Salem in all three sprints. Obera qualified for both the 1960 and 1968 Olympic Trials, and in the last few months she has defined a new kind of sprinter for America: an octogenarian who can fly. In the Boston indoor nationals for 2014, Irene demonstrated the new order of things. The American indoor record for 200 in the 80-84 group had been 48.09 seconds, but Irene ran 36.53 for a world record. She also ran a world mark in the 60 (10.37 seconds), and her time of 1:34.25 in the 400 beat the listed American record of 2:03.81 by 29.56 seconds. She was named USATF’s overall Athlete of the Week as a result of her performances.

Flo Meiler: Shelburne, Vermont, 80. Just joined the 80’s club. She’s broken at least 15 world age records. How many 80 year old women can pole vault 6 feet? With her many events (She’s entered in 14 and will likely set many world marks), Flo could gain 100 or more points for Mass Velocity in the team competition. Among her Winston-Salem events, she comes having just set last weekend Women’s 80+ World Records in the Steeplechase and pole vault.

Kathy Bergen: La Canada, California. Age 74. Entered in the 100, 200, and high jump. In 2010, Kathy made track history by becoming the first woman aged 70 or over to break 15 seconds in the 100-meter dash, blasting an amazing time of 14.76 seconds, a mark that remains the world record today. Indoors, Kathy holds the world records for the 70-74 group in the 60 (9.21 seconds) and the 200 (31.86), while outdoors she has the world standard in the high jump (1.30 meters) as well as the 100.

Renee Shepherd: Merchantville, New Jersey. Age 49. Entered in the 100 and 200 at Winston-Salem. Renee, out of the University of Pittsburgh, even in her late 40s can still beat a very healthy percentage of collegians. Indoors, she has the American marks in the 60 dash for both 40-44 (7.78) and 45-49 (7.86), and she is the US record holder for those age groups in the 200 as well (25.34 and 25.47, respectively). Outdoors, Renee co-holds the American mark for 40-44 in the 100 at 12.31, but she has an even faster mark, 12.10, in 45-49, a record she set in winning the 2009 worlds in Finland. She also holds the American outdoor mark for 45-49 in the 200 (25.28).

Winston-Salem Entrants Who Are Widely Known Outside of the World of Track and Field

Nolan Shaheed. Pasadena, California, age 64. In addition to being arguably the best middle-distance runner among American masters, Shaheed has distinguished himself for decades in the musical world. He was musical director for Marvin Gaye, played lead trumpet for Count Basie, and to date has worked with Natalie Cole, Duke Ellington, Stevie Wonder, and Aretha Franklin, to name just a few of the stars who have benefited from his presence. Over the past year he played on American Idol and The Voice. (See above for additional details on his musical background and his world and American running records).

Henry Ellard. Metairie, Louisiana, age 52. Out of Fresno State University in California, Henry will be competing in the M50 division at Wake Forest in both the long jump and triple jump. He is best known to U.S. sports fans as one of the greatest wide receivers in the history of the National Football League. In his 16-year NFL career, which included 11 years with the Los Angeles Rams, Ellard had 814 receptions and 65 touchdowns.

Damien Leake. Van Nuys, California. Age 61. Leake will compete in the 100, 200, and long jump at Winston-Salem. Damien has appeared in a variety of movies (including Apocalypse Now and Serpico) and a plethora of TV shows. At the 2014 Boston indoor nationals he won the 60-meter dash for men 60-64 in a blistering 7.60 seconds, just 0.08 seconds off the world record.

SOME NOTABLE LOCALS at the Nationals in Winston-Salem (from Pete Taylor, cont.):

Noel Ruebel. Winston-Salem. Age 57. Entered in the discus. The first high schooler ever to clear 7 feet indoors in the high jump, Noel, former Head Track & Field Coach at Wake Forest University, currently track coach for Forsyth County Day School, is the meet director for the Winston-Salem national masters championships. All-American at Purdue University, he is one of the best all-around athletes entered. In 1978, Ruebel earned Purdue’s version of the Triple Crown. He won the Big Ten Medal of honor as the school’s top male scholar-athlete, was named as the student-athlete who brought national attention to Purdue, and earned the Red Mackey Award for athletics and leadership. In his career at Purdue and Wake Forest, he has coached Olympic medalists, many conference team and individual champions, and all-Americans. Ruebel was elected into the Indiana Track and Field Hall of Fame in 1981.

Bill Gramley. Lewisville, NC, just outside Winston-Salem. Age 78, Entered in shot put, hammer, weight throw, and discus. Won the hammer, weight, and discus a year ago at national championship in Olathe, Kansas, and was second in shot. Retired minister in the Moravian Church, and since 1996 new career as pastel artist and pastel art teacher. Proud to assist Winston-Salem as the City of Arts and Innovation. Graduate of Davidson College.

Dixon “Carl” Cook. Greensboro. Age 66. Cook has entered the 800 and 1500 at Winston-Salem. A hard-hitting runner who turned in some very nice performances at the recent Southeastern Masters in Raleigh, Carl also ran very well at indoor nationals, taking third in the 800 (2:38.33) and second in the mile (5:48.78).

Bob Milan. Greensboro. Age 65. Entered in the 1500, 5000, and 10,000. A very capable performer, Bob should wreak some havoc in his races at nationals.

Dot Sowerby. Greensboro. Age 81. Dot is entered in the 100, 200, 400, 800, and 1500 at nationals, which should give her high medals and quite a workout.

Robyn Holland. Winston-Salem. Age 43. Entered in 1500 and 800, was W40 gold medalist in both the Mile and 3,000 meters in Boston at Indoor National Masters Championship in March. A top competitor to watch.

Latiffia Taylor. Greensboro. Age 31. Entered in the 100, 200, 100 hurdles, long jump, and triple jump. Over this past year, Latiffia won the 100 at outdoor nationals in Kansas, and this year she won the 60 (7.95 seconds) and 200 (26.82) at indoor nationals in Boston. Expect her to star.

Gaither Jenkins. Winston-Salem. Age 45. Entered in the 100 and 200. Out of Lenoir-Rhyne College in North Carolina, Gaither is a local realtor in Winston-Salem who hopes to cover a lot of real estate very quickly at the nationals. He is in a very talented age group (45-49) but given that he knows the home turf, he could place well.

Canadian Superstar Will Compete in Winston-Salem

Some 19 international athletes will compete in Winston-Salem, headed by the incomparable Earl Fee of Mississauga, Ontario, Canada, who is now 85 but still on his game. Known as “The Great Earl,” Fee recently became the first man 85+ in history to beak 1 minute, 20 seconds in the 400 dash, uncorking a 1:19.04 in Raleigh, NC. Amazingly enough, Earl holds the world outdoor marks in the 800 for three different age groups: 65-69 (2:14.33), 70-74 (2:20.52), and 80-84 (2:48.95). Count on Earl to break some more world standards in Winston-Salem.

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July 13, 2014

2 Responses

  1. Burr Daly - July 14, 2014

    Another great job, Bob.

  2. Sully - July 15, 2014

    That frog looks like I feel today …..hope to see some friends in NC
    Sully

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