Meiler by a mile: Flo is USATF Athlete of the Week for nationals

Flo the TJ'er.

Flo the triple jumper.

It’s always hard to pick out the star of a meet as high-powered as nationals, but USATF on Wednesday made a solid selection in W80 Flo Meiler. Following tradition, the standout American at outdoor nats is Athlete of the Week. How did Flo-Go rate the honor? How’s this for starters: 8 gold medals, 6 silver medals, 1 world record (pentathlon), 4 American records (hammer throw, weight throw, discus, high jump). She’s now in the running for IAAF Best Masters honors at the end of the year. Here’s how USATF intern Tyler Stevenson began his report: “Eighty-year-old Masters athlete Florence Meiler has been named USATF’s Athlete of the Week after her impressive 14-event weekend as she had broke several records at USATF Masters Outdoor Championships at Wake Forest University in Winston-Salem, North Carolina.”

Flo the high jumper. (All photos here are by Rob Jerome.)

Flo the high jumper. (All photos here graciously provided by Rob Jerome.)

Tyler continues:

Meiler (Shelburne, Vermont) made Kentner Stadium her playground for the weekend, amassing eight gold medals and six silvers while setting World records in the pentathlon (4,319) and pole vault (1.65m/5-5). She also set American records in the hammer throw (22.30m/73-2), weight throw (9.09m/29-10), discus (18.36m/60-3), and high jump (1.02m/3-4)

Flo the pole vaulter. (She went higher earlier in the year.)

Flo the vaulter. (She went higher earlier.)

“I just love keeping in shape,” Meiler said to Tommy Bowman of the Winston-Salem Journal. “A lot of people ask me how I keep doing this, and I say, ‘Well, it’s not that easy but you just keep going.’ It’s a wonderful feeling when people come up to you and tell you what an inspiration I am to them to get off the couch and be active.”

Other notable athletes from this week include:

Charles Ross (Decatur, Georgia) was a member of the first 90 year-old-plus relay team in history, competing in the 4×100, 400 and 800m relays at USATF Masters Outdoor Championships in Winston-Salem. The team, which included sprint specialist Champion Goldy Sr., 97, (Haddonfield, New Jersey) Orville Rogers, 95, (Dallas, Texas) Charles Boyle, 91, (Annapolis, Maryland) Roy Englert, 92, (Springfield, Virginia) and Ross instantly set World records in each event (2:27.37, 12:41.69, 28:17.10) He also won the 100m (38.90), 400m (3:11.45), 800m (7:04.82), long jump (1.02m/3-4.25), triple jump (2.91m/9-6.75), shot put (4.55m/14-11.25), discus (7.85m/25-9), hammer throw (5.84m/19-2) and the weight throw (4.91m/ 16-1).

Flo the shot putter.

Flo the shot putter.

Tori Bowie, (Hattiesburg, Mississippi) won the women’s 100 meters at Monaco with a world-leading and personal best 10.80, her first race since injuring her leg at the US Outdoor Championships. The field included Allyson Felix and Jamaica’s Veronica Campbell-Brown and Shelly-Ann Frasor-Pryce.

Justin Gatlin, (Clermont, Florida) beat a stacked 200m field at the Monaco fast track that included Tyson Gay with a world leading, meet record, and personal best 19.68.

Molly Huddle, (Providence, Rhode Island) broke her American record in the 5000m by more than two seconds, finishing sixth in 14:42.64 at Monaco.

Irene Obera (Fremont, California) had several record breaking performances at USATF Masters Outdoors. The 80 year old set records in the 400m (1:39.92), 80m hurdles (19.77), long jump (2.94m/9-7.75), 100m (16.81), 200m hurdles (42.24) and 200m (36.80).

Now in its 13th year, USATF’s Athlete of the Week program is designed to recognize outstanding performers at all levels of the sport. USATF names a new honoree each week and features the athlete on www.usatf.org. Selections are based on top performances and results from the previous week.

2014 Winners: January 15, Chris Derrick; January 22, Galen Rupp; January 29, Galen Rupp; February 5, Alexa Efraimson; February 12, Mike Rutt; Feb. 19, Bernard Lagat; Feb. 26,Sharon Day-Monroe; March 3, David Torrence; March 13, Francena McCorory; March 19, Irene Obera; March 26, Duane Solomon; April 2, Maria Michta; April 7, Noah Lyles; April 14, Kendell Williams; April 21, Meb Keflezighi; April 28, Kristi Castlin; May 7, Maria Michta; May 14, Erik Kynard; May 21, Emma Coburn; May 28, Brenda Martinez; June 2, Galen Rupp; June 9, Tori Bowie; June 16, Trayvon Bromell; June 23, Charles Austin; June 30, Devon Allen, July 7, Kaylin Whitney; July 14, Emma Coburn; July 21, Florence Meiler.

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July 24, 2014

8 Responses

  1. Roger Pierce - July 24, 2014

    Congratulations Flo.. Nice to have everyone else notice what we in New England have known for some time.. Awesome performances, by an awesome woman.

  2. Rob Jerome - July 24, 2014

    It was an honor to photograph Flo as she blazed her way through Nationals. Flo is the total package…she can run, she can jump and she can throw. Rare that someone has record-setting capabilities in all these areas.

    Congratulations, Flo. Well-deserved.

  3. Christa Bortignon - July 24, 2014

    Congratulations, Flo. Great job.

  4. Barbara Jordan - July 24, 2014

    Way to go Flo. Wish I was there to see you and Irene go head to head. Congrats on 14 events from your training partner.

  5. Mary Harada - July 24, 2014

    you are a star Flo – terrific.

  6. Jeffrey Langlois - July 24, 2014

    Congratulations Flo! You are an inspiration and a one of a kind amazing woman. I am proud to be your relative.

  7. Louise Guardino - July 26, 2014

    Just incredible. And done with such ease. Congratulations on the recognition and, of course, the achievements.

  8. flo meiler - July 28, 2014

    Thank you all for being so thoughtful. My five day weekly training paid off. Warmest Regards, Flo Meiler

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