Magical night in Monoco for top U.S. distance runners.
By David Monti
(c) 2010 Race Results Weekly, all rights reserved. Used with permission.
With huge personal best performances at the Herculis Diamond League Meeting in Monaco on Thursday night, both Shannon Rowbury and Andrew Wheating moved up smartly on the USA all-time lists for 3000m and 1500m, respectively.
Rowbury, the 2009 IAAF World Championships bronze medallist at 1,500 meters, finished third in the 3,000 meters behind Ethiopia’s Sentayehu Ejigu (8:28.41/world leader) and Bahrain’s Maryam Yusuf Jamal (8:29.20), clocking a personal best of 8:31.38. Knocking about half a minute off of her previous best time outdoors, Rowbury became the second-fastest American of all time behind only Mary Slaney (8:25.83).
Wheating, the 2010 NCAA 800 and 1,500-meter champion, turned heads with his 3:30.90 time at 1,500 meters, slicing six and one-half seconds off of his previous best of 3:37.52. Wheating is now the #4 American of all time behind Bernard Lagat, Sydney Maree and Alan Webb.
Ahead of Wheating, who finished fourth, Silas Kiplagat of Kenya (3:29.27) and Amine Laalou of Morocco (3:29.53) became the 19th and 20th runners, respectively, to break the 3:30 barrier, according to statistician Ken Nakamura.
Elsewhere in Monaco, Sudan’s Abubaker Kaki was a clear winner in the 800 meters in 1:43.10. Kenyan Boaz Lalang was able to catch South African world champion Mbulaeni Mulaudzi just before the finish line to take second. Both Lalang and Mulaudzi were clocked in 1:43.29.
American Alysia Johnson won the women’s 800 meters in a world-leading 1:57.34, her second mark this season under 1:58.00