USA Track and Field Youth World Trials
& Youth Outdoor Championshipsare Tuesday-Sunday in Edwardsville, IL
The St. Louis metro area will host the fourth and fifth USA Track and Field national events in the last 18 months this week with the Youth World Championship Trials and the Youth Outdoor Championships that kick off on Tuesday. In 2011, St. Louis and the USATF Ozark Association hosted the USATF Annual Meeting at the Hyatt Regency in downtown St. Louis, November 30-December 4th. At that meeting, the St. Louis-Ozark Association bid to host the 2013 Youth Trials and Youth Championships won out bringing this week’s events to the area. Spear-headed by Olympic Medalists and St. Louis area residents Jackie Joyner-Kersee and Greg Foster, as well as Track Super Mom and current Ozark Association President Laura Borman, among others, the organizing committee not only secured one national event, but two.
The Youth Outdoor Championships are held yearly for athletes 18 years old and under in six different age divisions over six days. The Youth World Trials are held every other year over two days for 16 and 17 year olds and serve as a qualifying meet for the biennial IAAF World Youth Championships. The Youth Trials are held in conjunction with the Youth Championships.
Entry has closed for the Youth Championships but World Trials late entry is open until tonight at 11:59 p.m: http://www.usatf.org/Events—Calendar/2013/World-Youth-Track—Field-Trials/Entry.aspx. Athletes must meet the qualifying standards to be eligible for the Youth Trials which can be found here: http://www.usatf.org/Events—Calendar/2013/World-Youth-Track—Field-Trials/Entry/Qualifying.aspx. The two highest finishers in each of the 19 events on the boys and girls side who have met the World Championships Standards: http://dt9guucc6nuua.cloudfront.net/competitioninfo/5ed01c6b-7901-459c-a544-b53f62fa6510.pdf, and go through the team processing procedures with their passport at the meet, will be eligible to be selected by the selection committee to the US Team. The Youth World Championships will be held in Donetsk, Ukraine, July 10-14.
After the 2011 USATF Annual Meeting, St. Louis hosted the 2012 and 2013 USA Cross Country Championships in Forest Park in February each of the last two years. Those events were secured by the bids of Big River Running Company and the St. Louis Sports Commission.
This week’s events were originally planned to be held at St. Louis University’s two year-old Medical Center Campus Stadium, which sits several miles west of the St Louis’ downtown, but within view of the city/arch skyline. However, additional stadium infrastructure plans were not able to be completed, reportedly, and the meet will be held across the “Mighty Mississippi River”, in Edwardsville, Il. at Southern Illinois University-Edwardsville’s Ralph Korte Stadium. The stadium is less than 20 miles northwest of St. Louis’ Gateway Arch. SIUE, the nation’s largest campus, based on total acreage thanks to a large land donation, has had several top track and field meets held at Korte Stadium. The facility was host to a 1992 Olympic festival meet, and a couple of NCAA Division II Championships last decade, before the school moved to Division I.
The meet will be the second event webcast on USATF’s new event broadcast website: http://tv.usatf.org. Last week’s USA Junior and Senior Outdoor Track and Field National Championships in Des Moines, Iowa was the first.
There will be many people at the meet’s this week with exceptional accomplishments and experiences in track and field and service to the sport. Here are a few highlights about a few of the many people involved in the local organizing committee.
Jackie Joyner-Kersee is one of the greatest athletes of all-time. Jackie Joyner is an East St. Louis, Illinois native who starred for Lincoln High School before a standout career at UCLA in basketball and track. Joyner went onto one of the most decorated careers ever for a track and field athlete, and is considered by many one of the greatest female athletes of all-time. Coached by her husband Bob Kersee, Joyner-Kersee was a 4-time Olympian, 3-time Olympic Gold medalist, and set seven American and World Records. “JJK” owns the World Record in the Heptathlon with an astonishing 7291 point total, while only two others have barely gone over the 7,000 mark. Joyner-Kersee also owns the American record in the long jump with a best of 24-7, just 1.25 inches behind a Soviet Union athletes’ 1988 mark. Bobby Kersee is still one of the world’s best coaches and trains many of America’s most accomplished athletes. He helped guide Allyson Felix to her breakthrough gold medal in the 200 meters in the London Olympics last year.
Greg Foster graduated from UCLA four years ahead of Jackie Joyner and is one of the all-time great hurdlers the world has ever seen. Foster captured the 110 Hurdles and 200 meter NCAA Division I titles for the Bruins before a professional career that included three World Outdoor 110 hurdles titles, a World Indoor hurdle crown, and the Indoor hurdle World Record-twice. Foster captured the 1984 Olympic Silver medal and was in the World top-ten rankings 15 times, a record for a running event. Foster is a registered athletes representative or agent, working to help post-collegiate and professional athletes secure sponsorship contracts.
Southern Illinois University-Edwardsville’s Ralph Korte Stadium
2013 USATF Youth World Trials Home:
2013 USATF Youth Outdoor Championships:
2013 IAAF World Youth Championships Info: