USATF nominates Bill Collins, Joy Upshaw for IAAF Best Masters

Joy, in Costa Rican hurdles, also starred at Budapest indoor worlds.

Joy, in Costa Rican hurdles, also starred at 2014 Budapest indoor worlds. Rob Jerome photo

Mary Trotto has tallied votes of her USATF Masters Awards Committee (including mine) and announced that Bill Collins and Joy Upshaw will be America’s nominees for IAAF World Best Masters honors at the end of the year. The WMA Council chooses from among WMA regional picks for the top spots, who get all-expenses-paid trips to the IAAF Gala in November. So what about Flo Meiler and Irene Obera? Don’t think too hard. This is WMA, remember. According to their rules, the 2014 track season consists of two meets — WMA indoor worlds and any of the WMA regional meets. If you don’t run WMA, you don’t count for the Gala gig. To their credit, several members of Mary’s committee rebelled at this. But she patiently reminded them that WMA makes the rules, and her hands are tied. My idea? As a protest, don’t nominate anyone. In fact, USATF and Canada should unite to back posthumous recognition of Olga Kotelko, who went bonkers at Budapest. BTW, if Bill eventually wins the best male award, he’d be the first double American winner (fixed after comment below). He won in 2006.

Here’s the note Mary sent announcing the picks:

Thank you all for your considerations.

The vote was for Joy w50 and Bill m60.

Just to review.

Joy’s three events that I selected (could only pick three)

The 200m indoor at Budapest AG95% she ranked #1 in world ranking in this event

200m outdoor- Costa Rica AG 93% 27.40

60m Hurdles indoor in9.48 at Budapest which ranked her #1 in world ranking.

She earned 2 gold’s at Budapest and 5 Golds at Costa Rica.

She has world records in the w50 Indoor 200m and long jump.

For Bill, he won two Golds in Budapest, the 60m and the 200m.

In the 60m, he ran 7.54 just .02 from the current world record.

AG 104%; the second Gold was in the 200m which he ran in 24.70 AG 99%

He already holds the current Indoor 200m record of 24.52.

He also hold the world records in M55 Indoor 60m, and the world record in the
M45,50,55, and M60 indoor 200m. He is also the current M55 world record holder
for the outdoor 100m and 200m.

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August 29, 2014

33 Responses

  1. Terry Parks - August 29, 2014

    Congratulations to Joy and Bill. They were an inspiration all this season and were fun to watch. Both Bill and Joy have been great ambassadors for our sport inspiring atheletes and fans all over the world.

    Joy is the ultimate competitor and sportswoman. I have watched her run and jump at all comers meet here in the San Francisco Bay Area and just recently in Costa Rica. She always is amazing and gracious.

    Best of luck to both Bill and Joy, but I am sure that win or loose they will both continue to be class acts.

  2. Weia Reinboud - August 29, 2014

    “If you don’t run WMA, you don’t count for the Gala gig.” This is not correct. Several people in the staff of EVAA etcetera suggest athletes for a long list, just those who they think are candidates for whatever results in whatever meets. How the choice from the long list is done I should not know.

  3. anonymous - August 29, 2014

    I agree with Ken’s idea. No nominations from the USATF, only support for Olga’s posthumous nomination.

  4. Friedel Schunk - August 29, 2014

    Ken, sorry – I hate to correct you. Bill would not be the first double winner, Guido Mueller, the superb sprinter from Germany, won in 2004 and 2009, and Lyn Ventries, an AUS walker, won in 2011 and 2012. You can look it up on WMA’s Website in the their Hall of Fame section.

  5. Alan Kolling - August 29, 2014

    While I agree that some move should be undertaken to get the WMA to re-evaluate their AOY criteria, I think the two nominations are right on point. And I agree that Joy Upshaw is an inspiring, gracious, and superb athlete, as well as a class act. Best of luck to both of them.

  6. Bill, Kaspari - August 29, 2014

    I agree with Alan that perhaps the criteria should be re-evaluated, but I don’t think it would be fair to slight two outstanding USA athletes because of some rule. Joy and Bill are both very deserving of the honor.

  7. michael janusey - August 29, 2014

    Brian Coushay, M50

    American Record – Pentathlon, #1 World
    American Record – Decathlon, #1 World
    Long Jump – #1 USA, #2 World
    High Jump – #3 USA, #4 World

    Not a bad year……..just saying

  8. Ken Stone - August 29, 2014

    Thanks for the note, Friedel. Apologies on the brain cramp. I’ve fixed the post.

  9. Rob Jerome - August 30, 2014

    I heard (but didn’t confirm) that the Canadian association has nominated Olga and Earl Fee. Earl is a previous winner. There was a lot of confusion in Costa Rica about whether Olga could be nominated posthumously, so I spoke to WMA President Stan Perkins, and he said “Yes”.

    A lot of talent among these 4 North Americans, but there was also considerable talent at the Costa Rica meet among Central Americans, so the Region has a plethora of possible nominees.

  10. leigh - August 30, 2014

    Did I just read this correctly?. We have two great athletes representing our country as nominees for athlete of the year and because people don’t like the criteria that is in place for selecting representatives they are complaining instead of congratulating Bill Colllins and Joy Upshaw. Really nice. CONGRATULATIONS Bill and Joy!!!!

  11. Marcus battle - September 1, 2014

    Renee Shepard
    Leads the world in two age groups
    In two events and secon in two others

  12. anonymous - September 1, 2014

    Great athletes nominated here, no doubt…but out of curiosity, decided to take a look at these two sprinters best times for 2014 and was very surprised to notice that neither Bill nor Joy are even ranked number one as sprinters in their own age groups anymore in the U.S! And actually are quite a ways behind, timewise, so what’s up here? In the 50-54 women’s age group, the lady ahead of Joy actually is leading all 3 sprints in the U.S. as well as number one in the world in a couple of them. Why wasn’t she instead nominated if we are looking at the best athlete of the year? Certainly not because they didn’t go to Costa Rica I hope…I looked at the results of that meet and could quickly see that practically every event had almost no competition nor hardly any competitors even so winning five or ten gold medals isn’t saying much there. Just wondering a few things about why Renee Shepherd and Oscar Peyton, for example weren’t the ones nominated.

  13. anonymous - September 2, 2014

    I am a different anonymous but I agree. This is nothing taken away from either Joy or Bill. They didn’t select themselves as nominees. It looks like neither Joy or Bill competed at US indoor or outdoor national championships this year. Using the same criteria as WMA does that mean that neither can be selected as USATF masters athlete of the year?

  14. Jerry Bookin-Weiner - September 3, 2014

    Neither Renee nor Oscar qualified for the WMA awards because they did not compete in Budapest or Costa Rica. Only athletes who competed in one or the other of those meets are eligible.

  15. Jerry Bookin-Weiner - September 3, 2014

    Look again. Renee and Oscar did compete at the outdoor nationals. Renee was in a different age group at that time (W45) – she “aged up” shortly after Winston-Salem.

  16. anonymous - September 3, 2014

    Jerry please read more closely. You misread my comment which did not say Renee and Oscar didn’t compete at US nationals. They did. Joy or Bill did not compete at our US meets. It doesn’t make sense to have criteria like that at a world level. It is doubtful we have it at a national level.

  17. Ron Pate - September 3, 2014

    Anonymous comments should not be posted, If you have a comment, then why hide who you are? Being that WMA award nominees are judged by a WMA committee, the nominees national standing in their country means nothing.

    To be judged by the WMA, you must compete in WMA meets or how are they to know who you are or how good you are. To be ranked number one in the world carries less weight if you do not compete in WMA Meets.

    There is no National Championship meet participation requirement to be nominated for a WMA award consideration, and there should not be. Some of us have to make a choice between the Nationals or the WMA Championships, because some of our bodies can not handle both meets when they are too close together.

  18. Linda Carty - September 4, 2014

    Congrats Joy and Bill! It doesn’t get any better than that. :) :) :)

  19. Liz Palmer - September 4, 2014

    Regarding anonymous comments, some people may be hesitant about posting publicly but I find some of their comments interesting and informative. I’m sure Ken would delete any that were offensive. Having said that, it’s unfortunate that Irene Obera or Flo Meiler were unable to be nominated for the WMA honor. Participation at a world meet would have allowed them to add to their already astounding totals of medals, world and national records, and USATF Athlete of the Week honors this year. Both of them had truly remarkable seasons.

  20. Wanda Brown - September 4, 2014

    Lets not forget about the throwers. Myrle Mensey went to Budapest and set 1 World record and 2 American records. Ranked #1 World in 3 events. Ranked #1 USA in 7 events ( includes indoor and outdoor). Went to Outdoor Nationals competed in 2 events won both and set American record in weight just missing the World record by 8″ Total 1 World- 6 American records so far this year.

  21. Eric Braschwitz - September 4, 2014

    September 4, 2014, a sad day in masters track, I just read that Randy Sturgeon passed. He was on a mission and we should honor his passion for the sport.

  22. Anonymous - September 6, 2014

    It’s disappointing that as a group we are not celebrating the accomplishments of Bill and Joy, but instead feel so bold as to cast blame and doubt on what is celebratory news.
    How would you feel if your accomplishments were called less than award worthy?
    Let’s treat each other as we would like to be treated and celebrate.

  23. anonymous - September 7, 2014

    There is nothing wrong with noticing that in W50-54, Renee Shepherd had substantially faster times than Joy in both sprints as well as being the best in the world in 2 sprints and in M60-64, Oscar Peyton, US National Champion in 100/200 as well as fastest times in the U.S. in both sprints were not chosen, in favor of 2 great athletes here but this year….slower ones than Renee and Oscar. So my question was to get educated of the criteria, not in any way to be punitive or perceived as punitive.

  24. Terry Parks - September 7, 2014

    World Masters Athlete of the year is not a USATF award, but a WMA award. Irene was named the USATF athlete of the year, but she ran no WMA meets. Both Joy and Bill are World Champions this year. There are simply different rules for best US athlete and best WMA athlete. Both Joy are worthy WMA champions. The analysis of looking at who is a the top of a list and or National US Champions simply misses the point. Being the US Champion is an awesome achievement, but by no means sufficient to be considered the best in the world. There are other very competitive national championships in the world. Just take a look at the German Championships results.

    Plus, being at the top of a list does not mean that you will automatically win. I have been at times #1 and #2 in the High Jump, but I did not win in Costa Rica or Nationals. Indeed, in Costa Rica I got beat by someone not on the High Jump List at the time! So, looking at who is at the top of the list is a good indicator of performance, but not the same as winning championships.

    Bill and Joy have been world beaters not on paper, but in fact. They have also been great ambassadors to our sport, inspiring people all over the world. It is sad that people on this site time and time seem more interested in tearing things down instead of building things up.

    I for one, am working hard to be more like Bill and Joy every day. Congratulations Bill and Joy.

  25. Alan Kolling - September 7, 2014

    I was unaware that Irene Obera had been named “USATF Athlete of the Year.” I assumed that wouldn’t be determined until later in the year, perhaps closer to the Annual Meeting. Could someone please clarify?

    BTW I am already on record as supporting Joy’s and Bill’s nomination by the US for award consideration by the WMA/IAAF.

  26. Ken Stone - September 7, 2014

    Irene was selected as USATF Masters Athlete of the Year. A Male Masters Athlete of the Year is still to come. The USATF Masters Awards Committee had to expedite an overall award winner for the sake of the Jesse Owens banquet at the December convention.

  27. Alan Kolling - September 8, 2014

    That’s great news, Ken. Irene will be so grateful for the recognition.

  28. anonymous - September 9, 2014

    Without trying to make anyone “sad” or “disappointed” here…after learning about what the criteria is to be Masters Athlete of the Year, I went back to the site which was 1 of the only 2 meets utilized to Select the US representative. Here are the facts according to
    In the women’s sprints, only 4 total were on the entry list of the 100M W50 age group and only 5 entries in the 200m W50. Am I reading it right that there were only 2 finishers in each event? So the criteria of the one of two major meets in the world that you Had TO GO TO for consideration of US representative of Masters of the year….you had to beat one person to win the gold..? seriously? And that was Joy….Bill Collins did not even attend the meet. Again, these two athletes have had incredible careers but I was simply educating myself on how to be considered (anyone else, not me) for AOY honors. You could go to any all comers meet in California and have better competition than whoever set the criteria and attendance to get nominated here. I can’t be the only person who looked at the results of Costa Rica and wasn’t a bit blown away that they decided this meet was in any way an important meet to be in. Maybe that’s why the entire nation of Canada, men’s and women’s combined entered 19 people (all age groups combined) and the US 80 M and W all age groups combined. Can somebody please address this without getting too “sad” or “disappointed”. Just be factual.

  29. Terry Parks - September 9, 2014

    Anonymous The NCCWMA was a great event. Well run and it was a great honor to win the 400 meters and the 4×4 relay with a squad of new friends including the great Ben James. If you are concerned about the numbers then participate.

  30. Terry Parks - September 10, 2014

    Anonymous, the WMA is an international organization. Costa Rica was an International meet. If you want to be considered the best in the world you need to go to an international WMA meet AND do well. Joy didn’t need to go Costa Rica to be eligible, she was already World #1 indoor and World Champion in the 200 and World Champion and World #1 in the 60 meter hurdles after Budapest. However, she did go to Costa Rica and ran a world class time in the 200 (93% AG). The president of the WMA, Stan Perkins, and other WMA officials were in Costa Rica. Therefore, Costa Rica provided athletes and opportunity to compete at a WMA meet and the opportunity to demonstrate there bona fides on an international stage to some of the WMA officials who would be voting for WMA Athlete of the year.
    Indeed, Mr. Perkins sums up why he thought the meet was important on the WMA site by saying:
    “The Championships have attracted more than 600 competitors from 23 countries (13 from within the North and Central American and Caribbean region and an additional 10 countries) and some outstanding competition has been witnessed. Two of the outstanding performers in Masters competition, Joy Upshaw from the USA and Christa Bortignon from Canada (photos below) have set high standards, but it has been the athletes from Costa Rica that have impressed the most. For many this has been their first real opportunity to test themselves against others from around the world and they have done very well.”
    Those are the facts. Congratulations Bill and Joy. Pura Vida.

  31. anonymous - September 10, 2014

    I wonder if terry will have to have the last word on this thread. Stay tuned.

  32. Marcus battle - September 10, 2014

    Wow we have masters drama

  33. Marcus battle - September 10, 2014

    Meryle mensey
    Joy, Bill, Renne, B.Coushey
    And Irene. we need Tv

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