AT Gets it Done in Eugene
by Devon Jeffreys
Be it the 400-hurdles, or the 400 flat, Angelo Taylor is a threat to win every time he laces up his spikes. On Saturday afternoon at the Prefontaine Classic, he showed why he's still one of the world's elite.
Racing on the very same Eugene, Oregon track where he will compete later this month at the U.S. Championships, Angelo paced the field with a season's best time of 45.16 to win the 400-meter flat race in the Prefontaine Classic at Hayward Field.
It was the first individual victory of the year for AT, who picked up a team victory earlier this season at the Penn Relays.
"I felt pretty good," Angelo told IAAF.org's Dave Martin. "It was a nice strong race. Not one of my fastest times, but it was a strong race. It was a confidence-builder, definitely right on time in preparation for the nationals. Everything is going according to plan."
Angelo bested a field that included winners of a combined 12 Olympic or World Championship golds. AT's time of 45.16 beat Olympic champion and meet favorite Jeremy Wariner by nearly two tenths of a second.
Starting out of lane 6, Angelo got off to a fast start, quickly chasing down Kevin Borlee in lane 7. He came even with US teammate Josh Scott in lane 8 soon thereafter and by the time the field hit 300 meters, Angelo was pulling away. AT turned on the afterburners in the final 100 meters and held off Wariner in the homestretch to take the race.
"Angelo Taylor stuck to his script, got out very very well and then was able to hold off Wariner down the stretch," NBC Sports commentator Ato Boldon said. "Angelo Taylor is a two-time Olympic champion in the 400 hurdles. He knows how to finish."
Angelo told KEXI News 9 in Oregon before the event that he enjoys racing at Hayward Field, where he will run again June 23-26 at the USA Outdoor Track and Field Championships.
"I can't even count how many [times I've raced at Hayward]," he said. "This is Tracktown, USA. The fans are phenomenal. The track is fast. It's a great place for track fans and for track athletes to get out here and race. It's almost equivalent to a European meet. It's definitely one of the best places to run in the USA…it definitely has a special place in my heart."
In case you missed it, you can watch AT's run in the 400 at the Prefontaine Classic, courtesy of Universal Sports here.
- Oliver and Jeter shine on a day when world leading marks dominate in Eugene (IAAF.org, June 5, 2011)
- 2011 Prefontaine Classic Results (PreClassic.com, June 4, 2011)
- Semenya 2nd in Prefontaine 800; Felix 3rd in 400 (USA Today, June 5, 2011)
- INTERVIEW: Olympic Gold Medalist Angelo Taylor (KEZI, June 3, 2011)
- 2011 Diamond League Eugene: Angelo Taylor beats Jeremy Wariner (Universal Sports, June 4, 2011)