Sunday, April 22, 2007

International Friendship Freedom Games Recap

Had a good time up in Greensboro, North Carolina this weekend, on and off the track. Got in town Thursday afternoon, it was great seeing a lot of the other hurdlers, some of whom I haven't seen since indoor championships.

As far as the competition went, we had a very early start to the action, with our first round being at 9:45am!! I have never had a race that early in my entire career. Warm-ups went well for the opener, I ended up dropping a 13.26 (+0.0w) in heat 3 of 4 to win the heat, I didn't feel that comfortable during the race at all, but when the time came up on the board, I felt that I could muster something in the 13.1 range in the final. The prelim was the worst race I ran all season I felt.

The final was held at 12:30, I'm a big fan of having a couple of rounds a day, I didn't do too much for warm-up part II, but was feeling pretty good before hand, although my shins were hurting a little bit, I've been fighting an uphill battle with my shins for about the last couple of weeks. During the race I got out pretty slow, but just stayed with my form and focus through the middle hurdles. I came off hurdles #8 and #9 a little off balance, I didn't feel it during the race, but after watching the replay of the meet on the scoreboard I could really see it. I regained everything and brought it through the finish line strong and ended up running 13.22(+0.1w), which is a new season best and world lead! I missed my person best by .02 seconds. The competition was great, Payne almost hit his person best with the 13.33 he ran, also .02 off a new record. Rounding out the top three was Ron Bramlett with a 13.45 a seasons best as well.

This outdoor campaign is already shaping up to be a fast one, with a lot of people opening up their respective season faster than they have previously. North Carolina A&T and the city of Greensboro were great hosts for the weekend, I look forward to running in competitions they will host in the future.