The London Diamond League meet marks the last major get together for track and field before the World Championships in London. I'm sure if I had a magic wand and could wave it the Czarina and I would be headed to Russia for the meet which starts on August 10. But I digress, I want to write about the fortunes of U.S. track and field heading into the big meet.
The U.S.A. rocked the London Olympics. It was a great despite some sprint woes, the men getting shutout of the medals at 200 meters and a 2nd place finish in the 4 X 400. I think duplicating the successes of London in Moscow will be a stretch.
U.S. sprinting is in disarray. Tyson Gay's positive drug test, Carmelita Jeter's injury plagued season, Sanya Richards out, Aries Merritt all over the map in the hurdles and Alyson Felix showing uncertain form, it could be a real mess. It doesn't look much better in the distance races. Matt Centrowitz and Leo Manzano have run like crap in Europe. I highly doubt that Galen Rupp can duplicate his medal performance of London and Bernard Lagat is simply too old.
The best hopes are in the middle distances where Brenda Martinez has shined at 800 meters and the men boast two medal contenders in Nick Symmonds and Duane Solomon. The men's 800 is wide open without David Rudisha's majestic presence. The one racer I will watch with great interest is Mary Cain. The high school phenom has shown she lacks the tactics needed on the world stage after a disappointing run in London. But she has the kind of finishing speed that could put her in the final and dare I say it, in a slow enough race, a medal contender.
It's a shame the Czarina and I won't be in Moscow next month. I guess we should start saving our pennies for London in 2017. Now that sounds like a grand plan.