Pre Classic 110m Hurdles - OLIVER EAGER TO GET BACK ON WINNING TRACK
May 31, 2011
For Immediate Release
OLIVER EAGER TO GET BACK ON WINNING TRACK
At last year’s Prefontaine Classic, David Oliver stormed to an American Record-equaling 12.90 in the 110 Meter High Hurdles, crushing a world-class field by over 2 ½ tenths. That continued a winning streak that lasted throughout 2010 and earned him the No. 1 ranking in the world from Track & Field News. The streak lasted right up until the Shanghai Samsung Diamond League meet on May 15th, where he ran against comebacking Liu Xiang, the former world record holder, and had his wings clipped by the Chinese star, 13.07 to 13.18. The race caused a sensation in Liu’s hometown of Shanghai, where the race was run, and indeed, throughout China.
As for Oliver, he took the loss in stride and said candidly, “I wish I had the answer to why I underperformed tonight. I will just have to go away and train harder and be ready for my next major competition.” Which just happens to be the 37th annual Prefontaine Classic this Saturday at Hayward Field, the 4th stop of the Samsung Diamond League circuit.
What a matchup: Xiang, the 2004 Olympic Champion and 2007 World Champion, hampered for the past three years by foot injuries that required surgery, but now on the comeback trail….versus….Oliver, the American Recordholder, 2008 Olympic bronze medalist and undefeated in 15 races last year, with the 3rd fastest time ever run, 12.89.
But if either of these headliners should stumble, the Nos. 4, 5, & & ranked hurdlers from last year are ready. Ryan Wilson was the runner-up at the 2010 Pre, Ronnie Ash was 3rd, and European Champion Andy Turner makes his first appearance in front of the Hayward Field fans. But wait! Don't you dare overlook Ashton Eaton, the versatile Oregon alum who is world class in many events. As he prepares for a run at the national decathlon title, Eaton is hurdling better than ever, and three weeks ago in Eugene lowered his lifetime best to 13.52.
110 HURDLES (MEN)
Liu Xiang (China)
David Oliver (USA)
Andy Turner (Great Britain)
Ronnie Ash (USA)
Ryan Wilson (USA)
Ashton Eaton (USA)
Shi Dongpeng (China)
Aries Merritt (USA)
Tickets for the 37th annual Prefontaine Classic are on sale from www.goducks.com, from 1-800-WEBFOOT, and in person at the Oregon Athletic Department ticket office. The NIKE Prefontaine Classic will be shown live to an international audience and on NBC from 2:30 to 4:00 p.m. ET.