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244 Team USA Athletes Head To Perth for World Masters Track, Oct. 26

PERTH, Australia and WASHINGTON, Oct. 12, 2016 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ 244 Team USA athletes, age 35-90+, are headed to Perth, Australia, to compete in the World Masters Athletics Championships October 26-November 6. The USA team includes 16 returning world champions and 20 national age group champions.Team USA joins the meet's over 4000 athletes and 90 countries.

Among women on the team, Hall of Famers Kathy Martin (65) in distances, Joy Upshaw (55) in hurdles and jumps, and Jeanne Daprano (80) in sprints and middle distances (first woman 70+ to break 7 in mile) are set to assault world age records and go for gold in their new divisions.

Among men, Australian native now competing as USA star, Roger Pierce (72), is excited to return to race for sprint medals on home turf. Bill Collins (65) continues his inspirational recovery, a remarkable story, from life threatening Guillain-Barre syndrome, once again setting world marks and now competing in a new age group. Gary Patton (70), double 2011 Sacramento Worlds winner, will attempt a triple in his new age division.

Throwers Ralph Fruguglietti (61), last year's WMA Lyon winner, again does the discus; and Carol Finsrud (59), American record holder and past Olympic Trials qualifier, is competing in five throws events.

The team also includes two competitors in their 90's: Dixon Hemphill (91) in five events, and Shirley Dietderich (90) in four.

Last year, at the World Masters Athletics (WMA) Outdoor Championships in Lyon, France, Team USA won 57 golds and 160 medals overall. The American team set six world records, four individual and two relays.

This year's Team USA, making the 30-hour, 11,000+ mile (from NYC) flight "down under," again expects to be among the top contenders both for individual and relay titles, as well as for Gold and overall medal counts by country. Athletes will display lifetime fitness and health regardless of age as the world's best masters track and field athletes. Events include the full range of runs, jumps, and throws.

The delegation and team will be headed by outgoing USA Masters Track and Field Chair Gary Snyder, who oversaw team arrangements and coordinated liaison with WMA and USATF, including sponsored team uniforms from USATF and Nike. Other USA representatives to the WMA General Assembly include long-time USA international experts and leaders Rex Harvey and Carroll Deweese. Competition team managers are Phil Greenwald (Stadia) and Mary Rosado (non-stadia).

DRUG TESTING note: Whereas USADA coordinates drug testing at USA Championship meets, all athletes in Perth from all countries are subject to WMA and WADA drug guidelines and testing as at all World Masters Athletics championship meets.

Here are links to USA Team members and events, and the event schedule.

USA TEAM MEMBERS WMA Perth USA Entries 2016|244 Athletes and 594 planned events, including city and age compiled by USA Track & Field; URLS: http://www.weinerpublic.com/2016WmaEntries.xlsx ; http://www.weinerpublic.com/2016WmaEntries3.xlsx

COMPETITION EVENT SCHEDULE:

(Oct 26-31): http://www.perth2016.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/07/Perth-2016_Competition-Schedule-26th-to-31st-Oct-FINAL.pdf
(Nov. 1-6): http://www.perth2016.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/07/Perth-2016_Competition-Schedule-1st-to-6th-November-FINAL.pdf

COMPETITION VENUES:
STADIA: WA Athletics Stadium (WAAS), Stephenson Street, Mount Claremont; Erin Clark Athletic Centre, Wharf Street, Cannington

NON-STADIA: Marathon and Half: Banks of Swan River, from WA Water Sports Clubrooms and back. Road Walking: Perry Lakes Drive, Floreat. Cross Country: Alderbury and Perry Lakes Reserves, Floreat, near main stadium, Mt. Claremont

For onsite interviews in person or by phone with USA athletes, or if media has questions for the USA, contact: Bob Weiner, USATF Masters Media Chair, prior to the meet at 301-283-0821, or during the meet at cell 202-329-1700, email weinerpublic@comcast.net.

Two summaries of potential American stars are below, one by USA masters track announcer Peter Taylor, and another by USATF Masters Awards Committee Chair Mary Trotto. Many thanks to Pete, Mary, Rex, Gary, Jeff Brower, Jay Wind, and others for assistance with writing, guidance and suggestions.

BIG STARS IN PERTH 2016by Peter Taylor, USA Masters Announcer

Superstar Kathy Martin and fellow Masters Hall of Famer Roger Pierce will be among the many Americans to watch at the upcoming World Masters Athletics (WMA) Championships in Perth, Australia, which begin on October 26. Pierce, 72, was born in Mt Gambier, S. Australia and won the 400 at the 2001 WMA championships in that country (in Brisbane). He has set 6 World Records, and won 8 World Championships and 23 US National championships.

Kathy Martin. Northport, Long Island, New York. Martin is sure to visit the awards podium repeatedly during the meet. Entering the 65-69 age group (W65) on September 30 put Kathy in great position to break world and American marks in Perth. Martin will compete in the 800, 1500, 5000, 10,000, and 2000 steeplechase on the track, the 8000 cross-country race, and the marathon.

Kathy owns the world indoor record in the mile for women 55-59 at 5 minutes, 19.87 seconds, and she was the first 60+ woman in history to break 6 minutes indoors (Kathy has the current W60 record, 5:47.25). Kathy also has the world W55 indoor mark for 3000 meters, 10:35.76. Outdoors, Martin has the world marks in W60 for both the mile (5:42.65) and the 2000 steeplechase (8:37.34).

MEN
Roger Pierce
. Rowley, Massachusetts. Age 72. The popular Pierce will compete in the 100, 200, and 400 dashes in the "land down under." When he won the 400 at the 2001 worlds he was 56 and required just 55.38 seconds to prevail. Four years later, in Spain, Roger was again a WMA 400 champion, winning the M60 gold in a superlative time of 55.96 seconds.

In 2011, Sacramento hosted the worlds, and Roger made his presence felt once again in the 400. At age 66 he ran a remarkable 1:00.06, securing a silver medal. In addition, Roger led off the US M65 squad in the 4 x 100 and 4 x 400 relays; both teams set still-standing American records: 51.12 in the 4 x 100 and 4:08.51 in the 4 x 400.

Last year, at age 70, Roger showed that even as a septuagenarian he remains a fine sprinter, running 1:03.36 in the 400 at Lyon worlds to take second.

Other American Stars

The U.S. squad in Perth will have a plethora of superb athletes to complement Martin and Pierce, far too many to include in this report. Just a few of the standouts will be described below.

Men

35-39

Babatunde Ridley. Age 38. Waldorf, Maryland. In 2013, Ridley journeyed to Brazil to compete in the WMA outdoor championships and came away with two golds, turning in exquisite times of 10.66 in the 100 and 21.60 in the 200.

Two years later, at Lyon worlds, Ridley required 10.87 seconds in the 100 and finished second. In Perth, he will try to win both the 100 and 200.

40-44

Antwon Dussett. Peoria, Illinois. Age 41. At the 2011 worlds in Sacramento, California, running in the M35 group, Dussett won the 400 in a sizzling 47.34 and the 200 in a blazing 21.57. In 2013, at 38, he won the 400 in the worlds in Brazil with an absolutely brilliant 47.37. For comparison, at the NCAA Division II championships that year, the times in the 400 finals ranged from 45.41 for first to 47.21 for eighth. Yes, Dussett should be an "honorary collegian" wherever he goes.

Antwon has the American indoor M35 record for the 200 at 21.67 seconds, which he set in Albuquerque, New Mexico, in 2011. This past winter he returned to Albuquerque to run 22.39 in the 200 and 49.32 at nationals, the latter an American M40 record. In Perth, Dussett will run the 200 and 400.

Jeferson Souza. Miami, Florida. Age 42. In the 2013 worlds in Brazil, at the age of 39 and thus at the top of the M35 age group, Jeferson went gold in the decathlon and took a second in the 110 hurdles. Currently, he has American indoor records in two multi-events, the pentathlon (M35) and the heptathlon (M40). In Perth, Souza will show off his skills in the decathlon and the 110 hurdles.

45-49

Derek Pye. Long Beach, California, age 48. In Perth, Pye will combine with Don Drummond, age 47 from Norcross, Georgia, to make up a formidable duo in the 110 hurdles. Drummond won the event last year at the worlds in France, and Pye has an excellent resume.

Derek Pye is the American indoor record holder for M40 in the 60 hurdles at 8.09 seconds, and in March of this year he broke the world M45 mark for this event by flying to a time of 8.16. Outdoors, Derek holds the American record for M45 in the 110 hurdles at 14.46 seconds. Both Derek and Don Drummond will compete only in the 110 hurdles in Perth unless they are drafted for relay duty.

Reggie Pendland. Dallas, Texas. Age 47. Reggie has a penchant for doing well at the worlds, as his recent history attests. In 2011 in Sacramento, both he and the winner ran 11.03 in the 100, with the other competitor getting the nod by 0.005 seconds. In 2013 in Brazil, competing as a 44-year-old, Reggie threw down an 11.12 to share the silver with a sprinter from Japan.

In 2015 in Lyon worlds, Reggie took the 100 gold in 11.24 seconds, an amazing time against a wind of 2.1 meters per second. In Perth, Pendland will run both the 100 and 200.

50-54

Getulio Echeandia. Age 52. Miami Beach, Florida. In the 2013 WMA championships in Brazil, even though at 49 he was at the top of his age group, Echeandia won both the 400 dash (52.40) and the 400 hurdles (57.17).

In 2015, Tony journeyed to the worlds in Lyon, where at 51 he took third in the 400 at 52.98 and scored another triumph in the 400 hurdles, running a scorching 57.53. In Perth, Echeandia will compete in his favorite events, the 400 dash and the 400 hurdles.

David Swarts. Jackson, Michigan. Age 51. Swarts did not begin race walking until 2009, when he was 44, but he proved to be a quick study and even today looks like an open competitor. In fact, David was a qualifier for the 2016 US Olympic Trials in the 50,000 race walk.

Last year, in France, David finished third at the worlds in both the 5000 race walk (23:57.40) and the 10,000 race walk (48:34). His 10,000 time equates to an amazing 7:49 per mile.

In Perth, Swarts will contest the 5000, 10,000, and 20,000 race walks.

60-64

Ralph Fruguglietti. Bakersfield, California. Age 61. Ralph holds the American record for the M55 group in the discus (1.5 kilograms) with a titanic heave of 55.14 meters (180 feet, 11 inches). He did that at age 57. For comparison, the American record for M50, which is held by none other than four-time Olympic champion Al Oerter, is 62.74 meters (Al achieved that at age 52).

Ralph has won multiple golds in the worlds, with his most recent triumph coming in Lyon in 2015 (57.16 meters in M60 with a 1.0-kg implement). In Perth, Fruguglietti will have an excellent chance for a gold and possibly an American record.

65-69

Bill Collins. Houston, Texas. Age 65. An All-American at Texas Christian University and later a member of the US national team that won gold in the 1977 World Cup and there set an open world record that stood for six years of 38.03 seconds in the 4 x 100. A potential Olympian, the team was denied the opportunity by the 1980 boycott.

Collins is an inspirational story of recovery and revival in masters track. He has five current world masters records. He battled Guillain-Barre syndrome two years ago, was near death, and has come back to once again set world marks. On March 6 of this year, during indoor nationals in Albuquerque, New Mexico, he added two jewels at age 65. He won the 60 dash in 7.69 seconds to easily better the existing world mark of 7.81. In the 200 dash, he crossed the finish line in 24.94 seconds, the first 65+ man worldwide to go under 25 seconds indoors.

In Perth, Bill will run the 100, 200, and 400, set to assault his new age 65 division for golds and possible world outdoor marks.

70-74

Gary Patton. Rock Rapids, Iowa. Age 70. Five years ago, at the worlds in Sacramento, Gary Patton opened some eyes by scoring a very difficult double, as he won the 800 in a sparkling 2:21.25 and the 1500 in an American record time of 4:46.05. Gary still holds that mark, and earlier this year he broke the American indoor record for M70 in the 1500 with an outstanding 5:07.11.

For Perth, Patton has signed up for the 5000 as well as his two specialties, the 800 and 1500.

70-74

George Mathews. Seattle, Washington. Age 73. A recent inductee into the USATF Masters Hall of Fame, George, a former USA Masters Committee Chair. In Perth, George will compete in the shot put, weight throw, and hammer throw.

In 2005 George won gold (in M60) in the weight throw in San Sebastian, Spain, at the WMA Championships where his winning throw was 19.84 meters. Indoors, George has American M65 marks of 19.33 meters (63-5) in the 20-lb weight throw and 10.51 meters (34-5) in the super weight (44 lbs). Outdoors in the same age group he has American records in the super weight at 10.60 meters (34-9) and the ultraweight pentathlon (4356 points).

85-89

Jerry Donley. Colorado Springs, Colorado. Age 86. This Colorado native out of Beloit College in Wisconsin has at least two claims to fame: (1) Winning a staggering number of gold medals in the pole vault at the world masters championships, and (2) joining wife Christel Donley as a phenomenal, unique wife-husband national masters age group winning couple. Jerry, who was elected to the USATF Masters Hall of Fame in 1999, will compete in the high jump and long jump as well as the pole vault in Perth.

WOMEN

40-44

LaTrica Dendy. Bronx, NY. Age 44. LaTrica was runner-up in the 200 (25.70) at the 2013 WMA outdoors in Brazil, but she took the 400 gold in 57.00. Four years earlier, at the world outdoors in Finland, LaTrica took gold in the W35 group in both the 400 hurdles and the 400 dash.

Indoors, LaTrica has the American record for 400 meters for the W35 group at 56.46 seconds. Outdoors in that age division she has the American records for the 400 (55.35) and 400 intermediate hurdles (1:01.19). In Perth, Dendy will be competing in the 200 and 400.

Rachel Guest. Surprise, Arizona. Age 41. In Perth, Rachel will compete in the 80 hurdles and the heptathlon. Judging by her 2015 performances at the 2015 WMA championships in Lyon she should do quite well. After all, she went gold in the 80 hurdles (11.67) and took the silver in the heptathlon. Her 5468 points in that event established a new American record.

Competing indoors, the versatile Guest set an American W40 record of 3737 points in the pentathlon in March at Albuquerque nationals.

45-49

Emmanuelle McGowan. Sugar Hill, Georgia. Age 48. Born in France but now an American citizen, Emma won the 100 at the 2015 worlds in brilliant fashion. She also took silver in the 200 and 400, identifying her as one of America's best. At the US indoor nationals in New Mexico this past March she again differentiated herself from her competition, as she won the 400 (1:00.41), the 60 (8.00), and the 200 (25.64), all by impressive margins. Emma will compete in the 100 and 200 in Perth.

55-59

Carol Finsrud. Lockhart, Texas. Age 59. Carol competed in the US Olympic Trials in 2000, and she remains a formidable thrower. Almost unbelievably, Carol holds the official American marks in the discus for five consecutive age groups: W35, W40, W45, W50, and W55, although the W35 mark has been surpassed (but not ratified).

Carol's W40 record in the discus is a spectacular 52.44 meters (172 feet). Carol also has the W55 American outdoor marks in the 16-pound weight throw (14.40 meters, 47-3) and the super weight (25 pounds) at 10.17 meters (33-4). Underscoring her versatility, in the W55 category she also owns the American record for both the throws pentathlon (4170 points) and the ultraweight pentathlon (4621 points).

In Perth, Carol, will be competing in the shot put, weight throw, discus, hammer, and throws pentathlon.

Joy Upshaw. Lafayette, California. Age 55. Joy is enjoying her first year in the W55 group, and she showed that in March by lowering the world indoor record in the 60 hurdles during the indoor nationals in Albuquerque to a scorching 9.71 seconds. Outdoors, Upshaw has already run 13.04 and 13.06 in the 80 hurdles; both are under the American record. In addition, Joy has run 27.54 seconds in the 200 outdoors this year, which is better than the American record for her age group.

Joy is also an extraordinary long jumper; indeed, she holds the world indoor mark for W50 at 5.45 meters (17-10 ). In Australia, Upshaw will compete in the 80 hurdles, 300 hurdles, long jump, and triple jump.

65-69

Sabra Harvey. Houston, Texas. Age 67. Sabra did not get started in running until her early 50s, but she has turned out to be a true standout. Currently, Sabra holds the American outdoor record in the 800 for both W60 (2:34.66) and W65 (2:42.14), and she has the 1500 marks in both age groups as well, with her W65 time of 5:29.85 standing as the world record. Another of her outstanding marks is the American record in the 5000 of 20:25.64 for W65. In Perth, she will line up for the 800, 1500, and 5000.

75-79

Kathy Bergen. La Canada, California. Age 76. The first woman aged 70+ to break 15 seconds for 100 meters, Kathy is truly a superstar.

Outdoors, Kathy has the world record for the 100 in the W70 group with a scorching 14.76 and for W75 with a pulsating 15.31. That would be enough for superstardom, but Bergen also owns the world marks in those age groups for the 200 at 31.39 and 33.79, respectively. She has the world mark in the high jump for W70 at 1.30 meters (4-3 ) and shares the W75 record at 1.22 (4-0). Indoors, she owns a variety of world records.

In Perth, Kathy will compete in the 100 and 200 and will show off her high jump and discus skills as well. Amazingly enough, she already has the American W75 mark in the discus at 22.38 meters (73-5).

80-84

Jeanne Daprano. Fayetteville, Georgia. Age 80. In 2007, Jeanne became the first 70+ woman ever to break 7 minutes in the mile, as she turned in a sparkling 6:47.91 at Duke University in North Carolina. Five years later, in California, she threw down a 6:58.44 for a W75 world mark. Both records still stand.

In 2013 at the worlds in Brazil, Jeanne took gold in both the 800 and 1500, while in Lyon worlds, at age 78, her best finish was a third in the 400. For Perth, which will be shortly after her 80 th birthday, Jeanne has giving herself the heady task of running the 100, 200, 400, 800, and 1500. Look for her to win some gold and get at least one world mark.

Irene Obera. Fremont, California. Age 82. Twice a participant in the US Olympic Trials, Irene still "runs young" and displays beautiful form even though she's on the other side of 80. Among her numerous world records, four in the sprints stand out; she has the current standards for W80 in the 100 (16.81) and 200 (36.80) outdoors and the 60 (10.37) and 200 (36.53) indoors. Enough said.

In Perth, Irene will be undertaking a truly challenging schedule, as she is entered in the 100, 200, and 400, the 80 and 200 hurdles, the high jump, long jump, and triple jump, and the heptathlon. Thus, she will compete in eight individual events as well as a multi-event comprised of seven individual events.

An Olympian from Liberia Now Living in California

In Perth, the United States squad will include Olympian Andrew Reyes, a 41-year-old from Liberia now residing in Richland, California. In the 2000 Olympics in Australia, Reyes competed for a 4 x 100 squad representing Liberia that finished in 39.77 seconds, a record for that country that still stands.

Three years earlier, competing for Abilene Christian University, Reyes ran on a 4 x 400-meter team that took the NCAA Division II national championship in a time of 3:05.86. In Perth, Andrew will compete in the 100 and 200 dashes.

Experience is the Best Teacher

The championships will include quite a few athletes aged 90 years or more, and two of those competitors will be Americans. One, Dixon Hemphill of Fairfax Station in Virginia, is 91 and will compete in the 100, 200, 400, 800, and 1500 while also finding time to throw the discus and javelin. Dixon, out of Middlebury College in Vermont, recently took up the throws to broaden his experience in athletics.

The other American competitor with a great deal of life experience, Shirley Dietderich of Berkeley, California, is 90 and has entered four events, the 100 dash, shot put, discus, and javelin. Look for Shirley to pull down some medals in the throws.

244 AMERICAN MASTER ATHLETES GOING TO PERTH TO COMPETE IN THE WORLD MASTERS TRACK AND FIELD CHAMPIONSHIPS, October 26 th to November 6 th 2016
By Mary Trotto, Chair, USATF Masters Awards and Hall of Fame committees

HERE ARE THE STARS TO BE LOOKING FOR AND THE EVENTS THEY WILL BE COMPETING IN:

The athletes list below are defending their outdoor title, record holders and Winners of the 2015 Athlete of the Year.

LAST NAME

FIRST

CITY

STATE

AGE

EVENTS AT PERTH

BERGEN

KATHY

LA CANADA

CA

75-79

100, 200, HIGH JUMP, DISCUS THROW (Defending 2015 World Champion in 100m, 200m)

BERNERT

BRANDI

DENVER

CO

35-39

100M

COLLINS

BILL

HOUSTON

TX

65-69

100, 200, 400

DONLEY

CHRISTEL

COLORADO SPR

CO

80-84

SH, HIGH ,LONG,TRIPLE, SHOT,JAVELIN, THR.PENT, HEPT (Defending 2015 World Champion in HJ)

DONLEY

JERRY

COLORADO SPR

CO

85-89

POLE VAULT, HIGH JUMP

DUSSETT

ANTWON

PEORIA

IL

40-44

200,400

FINSRUD

CAROL

LOCKHART

TX

55-59

SHOT, WEIGHT, DISCUS, HAMMER , THR. PENT (Defending 2015 World Champion in Weight, Discus)

GUEST

RACHEL

SURPRISE

AZ

40-44

SH, HEPT (Defending 2015 World Champion in the 80m Hurdles)

JASPER

LORRAINE

BIRCHRUNVILLE

PA

55-59

400, 800, 1500M

MATHEWS

GEORGE

SEATTLE

WA

70-74

SHOT, WEIGHT, HAMMER THROW

MCGOWAN

EMMANUELLE

SUGAR HILL

GA

45-49

100, 200 (Defending 2015 World Champion in the 100m)

OBERA

IRENE

FREMONT

Ca

80-85

100, 200, 400, SH, LH, HIGH,LONG,TRIPLE, HEPT (Defending 2015 WC in Long Jump, 100m, 200m, 200m Long Hurdles)

PYE

DEREK

LONG BEACH

CA

45-49

110MHH

RIDLEY

BABATUNDE

WALDORF

MD

35-39

100, 200

ROMAN

MARY

NORWALK

CT

80-84

SHOT, WEIGHT, DISCUS, HAMMER, JAVELIN, THR. PENT

SOUZA

JEFERSON

MIAMI

FL

40-44

DECATHLON

UPSHAW

JOY

LAFAYETTE

CA

55-59

SH, LH, LONG JUMP , TRIPLE JUMP

Additional US Athletes who are defending World Titles

Last Name

First

City

State

Age

Events at Perth, AU

Teague

Elizabeth

El Paso

TX

F40

Weight Throw (Defending 2015 World Champion in Weight Throw)

Pendland

Reggie

Dallas

TX

M47

100m, 200m (Defending 2015 World Champion in 100m)

Fruguglietti

Ralph

Bakersfield

CA

M61

Discus Throw (Defending 2015 World Champion in Discus)

Drummond

Don

Norcross

GA

M47

110m Hurdles (Defending 2015 World Champion in 110m High Hurdles)

Bellaire

Cheryl

Wayne

PA

F57

400m; 2000m Steeplechase (Defending 2015 World Champion in the 2000m Steeplechase)

The Athletes below are record holders, past award winners who will be competing at Perth in New Age Groups

DAPRANO

JEANNE

FAYETTEVILLE

GA

80-84

100, 200, 400, 800, 1500

HARVEY

SABRA

HOUSTON

TX

65-69

800, 1500, 5000M

MARTIN

KATHY

NORTHPORT

NY

65-69

800, 1500, 5000, 10000, 2K STEEPLECHASE, 8Km CC, marathon

PATTON

GARY

ROCK RAPIDS

IA

70-74

800, 1500, 5000M

A SPECIAL NOTE FROM CHRISTEL DONLEY RELAYS DEDICATION WOMEN 80-84 FOR PERTHCONCERNING FEI-MEI CHO:

Irene Obera, Jeanne Daprano, Mary Harada, Mary Roman, and Christel Donley have decided to dedicate our 2 relays 4x100m and 4x400m to our friend and teammate Fei-Mei Chou. She ran with us in so many meets and was the reason, we were able to record 2 WR's, last year in Lyon. Over all the years, Fei-Mei has been the best friend and athlete, and her untimely death has left a big sadness in all of us. Barbara Jordan and Flo Meiler also share our thoughts. Irene Obera and I will also dedicate our participation in Perth to Fei-Mei.

Contact: Bob Weiner, USA Track & Field Masters Media Chair 301-283-0821 USA landline, cell and in Australia during meet 202-329-1700 weinerpublic@comcast.net

SOURCE USATF Masters Media Committee and Robert Weiner Associates


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