Willie Gault highlights day of speed at Sacto world championships

When a 50-year-old man runs the fastest 100-meter dash at the world masters meet — faster than M35, M40 and M45 — you know you’ve seen something historic. So it was as Willie Gault won the M50 title with a 10.96 into a 0.5 wind Saturday at Sacramento State. Willie’s first world masters gold was matched by Kathy Bergen in the W70 race. But legends returned as well, including former WR holder Irene Obera in the W75 race and Pat Peterson in W85. Sadly, hamstring pulls prevented M70 Bob Lida, M75 Dick Richards and M40 Darren Scott of medaling (and possibly winning) their finals. In the field events, Jim Barrineau reprised his 1995 world high jump title by again beating a fellow Olympian. At Buffalo worlds, Jim beat Dwight Stones. In Sacto, he beat Willie Banks. And Carol Finsrud won the W50 discus gold — her ninth straight world title in that event. Incredible. See other sprint photos here (including semis and finals).

Willie beats (from left) fellow Americans Mike Sullivan, Ken Eaton and Mike Waller in the 100 final. Just think of the 4x1 relay prospects here!

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July 10, 2011

23 Responses

  1. peter taylor - July 10, 2011

    Excellent sprinting, to say the least. Minor correction, Ken: Jim Barrineau won the 1995 worlds in Buffalo, New York, not Boston.

  2. Marie-Louise Michelsohn - July 10, 2011

    Ken, you missed Sharon Warren’s Gold Medal performance in the 60W 100m. And please watch for what she does in the 200m. In fact, Americans went first and second in that 100m with Sharon and Brenda Matthews far out-pacing the rest of the field.

  3. Marty Wright - July 10, 2011

    Way to go Carol! Congrats on another fine performance!!

    Is it just me or is it difficult to find results for this meet?

  4. John Gallen - July 10, 2011

    Live results by venue at;


  5. Weia Reinboud - July 10, 2011


  6. John - July 10, 2011

    Carol is incredible…Nice job!

  7. John - July 10, 2011

    Marty – You can find results here. Takes a little digging through the venues. It’s funny…I couldn’t qualify in discus for the Texas State games, but I could have won World’s!


  8. John - July 10, 2011

    Marty – You can find results here. Takes a little digging through the venues.

  9. Marty Wright - July 10, 2011

    Thank you Weia and John.

  10. buzooti - July 10, 2011

    Way to go guys, but we cannot forget the women sprinters.

    Congratulations Dena Birade, Donna Lawrence, Toccata Murphy, Renee Henderson, Joy Upshaw, Liz Palmer and many others!

  11. wayne bennett - July 10, 2011

    Congratulations Carol. Such a great athlete and a very lovely person too.Love ya girl!!!

  12. Tom Carlson - July 10, 2011

    Great news. Way to go!

  13. Ken Stone - July 11, 2011

    Sorry about Boston flub, Peter. I fixed it. (Entry was posted at 1 a.m., when my brain had gone to sleep).

  14. peter taylor - July 11, 2011

    No problem, Ken. Boston and Buffalo, they both start with B. More important, as Buzooti points out, we have some U.S. women in the sprints who can really bring it. Wow.

    The six he listed (Dena Birade, Donna Lawrence, Toccata Murphy, Renee “The Jet” Henderson, Joy Upshaw, and Liz Palmer) could run right now for most college teams in my state (Virginia).

  15. Paul Brown - July 11, 2011

    Congrats to Willie Gault on his M50-100m victory. Many on this blog in times past are critical of him not running Worlds because of fear of drug testing. Well he did it-won-at Masters Worlds.

  16. Michael Waller - July 11, 2011

    Peter… You are sorely missed…

  17. peter taylor - July 11, 2011

    Thank you, Michael. As you probably know, I responded the very day I received an application for Worlds, and in May I received an outright rejection by e-mail. Oh, well.

    Thanks again. Haven’t looked up anything recently, but I believe I would have had you coming out of Whitworth College in Spokane. Or have I lost my mind?

  18. Michael Waller - July 11, 2011

    No Sir, Peter… Your mind is sharp as ever! Whitworth it is. Sorry to hear of the rejection.

  19. drug testing - July 12, 2011

    As of today no drug testing. We were waiting for the Anti Dope team to grab Willie, but no one has seen the drug comittee. Another flag that Sacramento is not trying to spend any money, they are only tryig to make money.

    I hate to say this, but I will save my money to run in a real WOrld Masters Meet. Europe know how to make you feel like you are running in a true championship. Very cheap medals and award ceremony is in a place where no one can see you.

    Announcer is just reading off a piece of paper as he does not know anything about any way. You cannot even hear him as sound system is really weak. Peter would have had the crowd into it with his knowledge of the athletes.

    2011 Worlds Gold Medalist

  20. Who's your daddy ?? - July 12, 2011

    A note to Paul Brown….I was one of those who was critical of Willie in the past. Personally; I’m glad he came out and performed well. Contrary to popular opinion; I was hoping his coming out would gain the Masters movement some notoriety; especially with the World’s on our home soil.

  21. buzooti - July 12, 2011

    I was unable to attend the 200M finals. What happened to Willie? He went from top seed to dead last. Did he get injured?

  22. Liz Palmer - July 12, 2011

    Buzooti, Willie Gault fell less than 20m from the finish line. I couldn’t tell the cause of it –one second he was cruising along in the lead and the next he had crashed onto the track.

  23. buzooti - July 13, 2011

    Thanx Liz,

    I hate to see such things happen.

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