World records fall at ABQ, but relay fiascos sour Day 2 at nationals

Liz Palmer and Joy Upshaw both broke the listed W55 world record in the 60 hurdles. Joy won the race. Rob Jerome photo

Liz Palmer (left) and Joy Upshaw both broke the W50 world record in the 60 hurdles (Phil Raschker’s 9.84 from 2003). Joy won in 9.71. Rob Jerome photo

Day 2 at ABQ nationals should be remembered as one of the greatest record days in masters history, but a snafu involving 4-lap relays left some great athletes angry and mystified — their record moments stolen. Christa Mann of USATF noted in her Saturday report: “In men’s 4x200m relays, two teams ran faster than their listed age-group American records when the M55 team of Don McGee, James Chinn, Ben James and William Yelverton ran 1:37.88 and the M65 team of Roger Pierce, Grady Cash, Bruce Mintz and Ivan Black ran 2:03.61. *Note: The 4x200m relay performances will not be considered for records due to the marking of exchange zones.” In fact, the M55s beat the listed WR of 1:40.58 by a British team at 2014 worlds. (The M65 WR is a German team’s 1:49.78 anchored by Guido Müller.) One observer wrote me: “Everyone is major pissed. Most likely from what the social media world tells me is that we will have an opportunity to re-run it tomorrow. Hopefully everyone is healthy for an extra race. Apparently the zone issue was pointed out to the officials by athletes several times and they were ignored. It sucks.”

M95 Orville Rogers became the oldest metric miler indoors in history. Rob Jerome photo.

M95 Orville Rogers became the oldest metric miler indoors in history. Rob Jerome photo.

Another source says: “The leadoff to second handoff zone was supposed to be staggered per the rules of a 3-turn stagger. The officials told the all second legs to line up at the same line. Wrong.”

A makeup attempt Sunday is rumored. Stay tuned.

Here’s the official USATF report:

An unprecedented Five World Masters sprint records in a single day went down Saturday, March 5 at USATF Masters Indoor Championships at the Albuquerque Convention Center. In two consecutive races, three world’s fastest age-group 60-meter finishers broke marks.

Kathy Bergen sets a W75 high jump record. Rob Jerome photo

Kathy Bergen sets another W75 high jump record. Rob Jerome photo

M70 Ty Brown, a world record holder in the hurdles, tested his dominance without the obstacles to finish the 60m in 8.11 for yet another WR. After finishing the race, an emotional Brown said, “When you can do that in front of these great guys as your colleagues, it means everything.”

Starting the day with 60-meter prelims, Bill Collins ran a World Masters record of 7.76 in the the M65 age group before running 7.69 in the final. Collins, who no one would know is recovering from Guillain-Barré syndrome, lowered the previous world standard of 7.81, which was set in 2012.

W55 Joy Upshaw started the day with an American record of 8.48 in the 60m before blazing to a 9.71 WR finish in the 60mH. Both Upshaw and Liz Palmer outran the world record as the silver medalist Palmer crossed in 9.82, proving the U.S. prowess for sprints in the world of masters track & field.

And Kathy claims the 60-meter record as well. Rob Jerome photo

And Kathy claims the 60-meter record as well. Rob Jerome photo

W75 Kathy Bergen, also broke a pair of her own records on Day 2, as she raised the high jump bar to a new world-record setting clearance over 1.25 / 4-1.25 after also breaking the age-group’s 60m record with a finish of 9.49, which she set last year. Bergen also holds AR in the W70-74 category.

Orville Rogers became the first M95 athlete in history to run the 1,500m, and he finished with a 16:32.19 WR.

Myrle Mensey set an American record in W65 shot, tossing 9.36m/30-8.5 to take down her own 2015 AR of 9.2m/30-4.75, as she complemented the weight throw AR of 11.06/36-3.5, which she threw yesterday.

Mary Roman in W80 shot put tossed 7.84m/25-8.75 to beat record of 7.78/25-6.25. Joanne Marriott surpassed Roman’s W75 weight throw AR with a winning toss of 11.77/38-7.2. Marriott also broke the super weight AR with a throw of 7.72/25-4.

Also in throw, M60 Quenton Torbert broke an AR in shot put, tossing 15.94m/52-3.75.

Bill Collins adds another notch in his WR belt in the 60. Rob Jerome photo

Bill Collins adds another notch to his WR belt in the 60. Rob Jerome photo

The day concluded with relays as the W55 unattached 4x200m team of Susan Lloyd, Lesley Chaplin, Julie Hayden and Vicki Fox ran under the listed non-club AR with their 2:07.94 finish. The W70 unattached team of Mary Robinson, Angela Staab, Barbara Hensley and Louise Guardino clocked 3:09.45 to outrun the current non-club record as well.

In men’s 4x200m relays, two teams ran faster than their listed age-group American records when the M55 team of Don McGee, James Chinn, Ben James and William Yelverton ran 1:37.88
and the M65 team of Roger Pierce, Grady Cash, Bruce Mintz and Ivan Black ran 2:03.61.

*Note: The 4x200m relay performances will not be considered for records due to the marking of exchange zones.

On the second day of competition, SoCal Track Club leads team scoring with 432 points.

Watch highlights from USATF Masters Indoor Championships on-demand on USATF.TV.

The meet continues Sunday, beginning at 8 a.m. with free admission for spectators.

Quotes

Kathy Bergen
On breaking the 60m record

“I had a lousy night’s sleep because I was so hyped up. I did my very best last year, and I broke the world record, and I just hoped to go well under 10 seconds today. I didn’t expect anything, but knowing that I was running with Irene Obera gave me an extra boost. I was thrilled to say the least. A little surprised and thrilled.”

On breaking her own high jump record
“Last year in Lyon, I had set the world record at 1.22/4-0 in Pasadena and in Lyon, France. My record was tied by a woman from the Netherlands. That was the outdoor record last year. She just upped my world record indoors to 1.24/4-0.75 like a month ago, and I don’t have easy access to high jump practice. I only practiced like five times before this meet, and the best I did was 1.20/3-11.25, so today I was stunned to get 1.25/4-1.25. All my high jump friends are here, so it’s great to do it when they can see it.”

Bill Collins

“It was a great joy just getting back here. I love this place. It’s phenomenal. Five years ago when I was here, they didn’t believe I could run that fast. And five years later after coming back from Guillain-Barré, it just shows what my capabilities are. I really love it. It’s tough for me because my dad passed away last year, and everything is dedicated to him. I’m crossing this line here, and there were days when I didn’t even think I would walk again. To do this is really great.”

Myrle Mensey
“Yesterday was an okay day. Anytime you set a record, it’s a good day. I just didn’t throw as good as I thought I wanted to. I think I just didn’t eat enough and it was a long day. Today was a much better day. I was really prepared. I have been really working on the shot put and was excited to be able to throw as far as I did.”

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March 5, 2016

6 Responses

  1. chuckxc - March 6, 2016

    Hoping for reruns for the 4x200s. Seems the right thing to do.

  2. Ron Johnson - March 6, 2016

    Congratulations and my sympathy to to teams that broke American records that won’t count. It was mentioned that the M65 4×200 WR is held by Germany 1:49.78 anchored by Guido Muller.Overlooked and not mentioned was the “WR” performance in that event of 1:45.10 by The Houston Elite TC.The order was
    NZ ByrantJr, Charles Allie, Ron Johnson and the great Bill Collins. This would have been Bill’s 4th WR of the day had it counted,

  3. Jeff Davison - March 6, 2016

    Congrads to Derek Pye on his great 60 meter hurdle run.

  4. Ron Pate - March 6, 2016

    Please Pay attention to this: when the Local Tourist Bureau Get the Bid for a USATF National Championship meet and they don’t exactly tell the truth during the bid presentation, plus they are “NOT” track people, expect something like the passing zones being marked wrong; Not to mention the altitude did not help the runners going 800 meters or longer. Just look at the seed times and the final results. And since when has the 3000 been run on the last day, just after the 800?
    Whose bright idea was that?

  5. Becky Connolly - March 12, 2016

    Liz and Joy-what a great picture of two fantastic warrior women making history both breaking the world record.

  6. william yelverton - May 24, 2020

    Just for posterity, I’d like to point out that the M55 WR record that was voided would not have been affected by the mis-marked exchange zones, since the WR team exchanged in lane 2 exactly in the center of the zone.
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NxCHCxcPBjk

    As far as I’m concerned personally, that record is still valid til an M55 team runs under 1:37.88

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