Monday, April 28, 2014

Great early season marks!

The Chula Vista Olympic Training Center hosted the first of seven High Performance meets this past Thursday, which showcased world-class athletes from over eight countries. Great weather conditions combined with the elite level of competition set the stage for many personal bests and even a few world-leading marks. In the women's throwing events, Whitney Ashley won the discus with 62.29m which was a warm up for her throw of 63.78m the next day at the Triton Invitational at UCSD. She currently leads the world with that mark. Tia Brooks is the new US leader in the shot put, throwing 17.86m and 18.50m at Triton. Jared Schuurmans (64.42m) held his own in a very competitive men's discus field, breaking his old personal record by over a meter. This is the 4th best mark in the world currently. Joe Kovacs ended the day with a monstrous throw in the shot put, setting a new personal best and world-leading 21.47m. Brittney Reese opened up her season with a win in the long jump (6.87m), coming from just a short approach. Also in the event was April Sinkler (6.37m), who competed again on Saturday in the Drake Relays. The meet wrapped up with the men's long jump, which featured two Olympians and finished with the two best jumps in the world. Greg Rutherford of Great Britain won the competition with a new British record and world-leading mark of 8.51m. The OTC's Tyron Stewart took second with a new personal best of 8.39m, the 2nd best mark worldwide. Third place was taken by Will Claye (8.29m), who also won the triple jump at the Drake Relays on Saturday. Also in the long jump on Thursday was Ronald Taylor (8.05m), Bryce Lamb (7.76m), Ahkeel Whitehead (5.18m) and Markeith Price who set a personal best of 6.51m. 

Although many will take this week off from competition to recover, a small group of athletes will be competing May 1-2 at the Steve Scott Invitational at UC Irvine

Monday, April 21, 2014

Mt Sac Relays; WOW!

The 56th Annual Mt. Sac Relays in Walnut, CA proved to be a strong stage for the athletes of the Chula Vista OTC this past weekend, April 17-19, which was highlighted by two world records. The pair of David Brown and guide runner, Jerome Avery, continued to dominate the sprint events for visually impaired athletes. Brown shattered his previous world record in the 100m with a new personal best of 10.92. He also set a new world record in the 200m (22.44). Markeith Price also ran in the visually impaired section of the 200m in 23.31. Competing in the ambulatory Paralympic 200m was Blake Leeper beginning the season with 22.84. Rob Brown opened his season in the 100m and 200m, finishing in 12.21 and 24.51. Hannah McFadden picked up two wins in the wheelchair 400m and 800m in 58.98 and 2:01.46. On the men's side, Erik Hightower also won both events in 50.29 and 1:46.37 and teammate, Austin Pruitt finished in 57.77 and 1:53.47, earning second place.
A small showing of able-bodied athletes was led off by Kiani Profit in the 100 meter hurdles (14.38). In the long jump, April Sinkler opened the outdoor season with a mark of 6.08m and Jefferey Henderson won the Invitational Elite section with a jump of 8.12m. Maya Pressley just missed a victory in the high jump, ending with a tie for second at 1.85m due to number of jumps. Sean Furey and Craig Kinsley finished second and third in the javelin throw with marks of 77.08m and 72.52m. Saturday's meet ended with an exciting competition in the men's triple jump with Chris Benard leading the field through the last jump when Omar Craddock surpassed him. Benard still had an outstanding day culminating in a new personal best of 17.09m, which is currently the 4th best jump in the world.

The first home meet of the season is scheduled for Thursday, April 24th, with many additional athletes competing on Saturday, April 26th in both the Triton Invite at UC San Diego and the Drake Relays in Des Moines, Iowa.

Monday, April 14, 2014

The Chula Vista OTC track and field team travelled to several meets this past weekend and finished with several strong performances and a few personal bests. Six athletes competed at the Pomona-Pitzer Invitational, led off by David Brown and guide runner Jerome Avery in the 100m with a time of 10.96. This mark bests his previous world record, however, the +2.1 wind reading is slightly over the allowable amount. Also seen in the 100m was Markeith Price running 11.62. David Brown and Jerome Avery came back in the afternoon for the 200m in 22.61. Paralympian Akheel Whitehead also competed in the event and finished with 25.53. Michael “Mike Mike” Murray set a new personal best in the 400m with a time of 51.00, bettering his mark from the Aztec Invitational two weeks ago. In the same event, teammate Ahkeel Whithead ran 59.05.
The Chula Vista OTC group was also represented at the Jackie Joyner-Kersee/Rafer Johnson Invitational at UCLA. The heptathletes Jessica Flax, Shana Woods and Kiani Profit competed in select events following their heptathlon last week in Santa Barbara. All three threw the shot put, led by Jessica Flax with a new personal best of 13.36m. Profit appeared in three events: the 100mh (14.09), shot put (11.36m) and the long jump (5.76m) and Woods competed in two: the shot put (11.56m) and the javelin (34.17m). On the men’s side, Mike Hartfield and Jeff Henderson long jumped, finishing with marks of 7.81m and 8.13m, respectively. Additionally, Henderson ran the 400m in 51.49 along with Paralympian, Blake Leeper (56.79).
On Friday the Chula Vista OTC discus, shot, and hammer throwers had their first competition of the season. Doing double duty the throwers competed at the MESA Community College Invite and ASU Sun Angel Invite. At Mesa Tia Brooks threw 18.06m in the shot which is the 8th best throw in the world. In the men’s shot Eric Werskey threw 19.63m. In the men’s discus new resident athlete Jared Schuurmans threw a new personal best of 63.28m, which is the 10th best mark in the world. In the women’s discus Whitney Ashely, Liz Podominick, and Beth Rohl threw 61.78m, 60.60m, and 60.39m, with Whitney’s being the 10th best mark in the world and Beth’s throw being a new PB and first time over 60m. Finally in the hammer throw Jesscia Cosby, Britney Henry, and Kristin Smith threw 70.58m, 69.44m, and 62.62m. At the ASU Sun Angel meet the throwers threw for the second time of the weekend. In the women’s discus throw, Whitney Ashley led the field with a throw of 61.35m. Beth Rohl and Liz Podominick also opened with marks of 59.25m and 56.42m. Jared Schuurmans also threw a solid 61.70m in the men’s discus. The Chula Vista OTC group led the competitive field in the women’s hammer throw, with the meet record holder, Jessica Cosby winning with 70.71m. Brittany Henry and Kristin Smith finished second and third with throws of 67.92m and 65.90m.  Paralympian Jeff Skiba opened his outdoor season in the high jump with a 1.98m effort. The men’s long and triple jump crew ran an exhibition 4x100m relay with Bryce Lamb, Chris Benard, Troy Doris and Ronnie Taylor, finishing with a time of 41.08.

Both able-bodied and Paralympic athletes will be competing next weekend, April 18-19 at the Mt. Sac Relays in Walnut, CA.

Monday, April 7, 2014

Weekend Wrap Up

The resident heptathletes and decathletes from the Chula Vista Olympic Training Center competed last weekend at the Sam Adams Combined Events competition in Santa Barbara, CA. Shana Woods led the group with stellar performances over the two days, culminating in a lifetime best score of 5668, which placed her third. Woods won two events, reaching a new personal best in the 200m (23.98) on the first day and set a new stadium record in the long jump with a leap of 6.26m. Kiani Profit also completed her first heptathlon of the season, finishing in fourth place with a strong mark of 5661. Profit, the stadium record holder in the 800m, ended the competition with a winning time of 2:11.28 in the event. Jessica Flax also competed in the shot put and threw 12.83m. On the men's side, Gunnar Nixon competed in select events including the 110m hurdles (14.66), discus (41.84m) and the shot put (15.03m), which was a new personal best.
The track and field teams will be seen next competing at the Sun Angel Classic in Phoenix, AZ, the Rafer Johnson JJK meet held at UCLA and the Pomona-Pitzer Invitational this upcoming weekend, April 11-12.

By Reny Colton