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Athletes Take On The Heat At USA Track And Field Outdoor Championships

Heat four of the Women's 200 meter race preliminary round.
Corinne Boyer
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Heat four of the Women's 200 meter race preliminary round.

Hayward Field hosted the USA Track and Field Outdoor Championships this weekend. A heat wave pushed temperatures into the mid 90s making it even hotter for athletes on the track. KLCC’s Corinne Boyer was there.

Heat four of the Women's 200 meter race preliminary round.
Credit Corinne Boyer
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Heat four of the Women's 200 meter race preliminary round.

Saturday’s early morning cloud cover provided some relief during the Track and Field Outdoor Championships. Sprinklers and misters were set up around to keep the crowd and athletes cool.  

Ty Cain with the Eugene Springfield Fire Department said because of the hot conditions, the department staffed the event for over 12 hours. Most athletes said the temperatures didn’t affect competition in the afternoon’s final events.

Matt Centrowitz won the men’s 1500. The battle for second and third place was divided by a few hundredths of a second. Robby Andrews finished second and Leo Manzano grabbed third. The top three finishers will compete in the World Championships later this summer in Beijing.

Leah O'Connor finished fourth in the Women's 3000 Meter Steeple Chase.
Credit Corinne Boyer
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Leah O'Connor finished fourth in the Women's 3000 Meter Steeple Chase.

After winning the International Mile at the Pre Classic, Ben Blankenship finished fourth in the 1500. When asked about his race, the Nike sponsored athlete said, “Without really processing it, it was a bit disappointing. You’re whole season really comes down to 1500 hundred meters. I executed the plan that I thought would put me in the best place to come out ahead and put myself on a spot to Beijing, and I fell a few hundredths of a second short.”

Blankenship said the heat wasn’t a big factor.

Allyson Felix won the Women’s 400. She won the same race at the Pre Classic. Natasha Hastings took 2 nd and Phyllis Francis finished 3 rd.

Olympic gold medalist Dee Dee Trotter didn't qualify for the Women's 400 Meter finals, but said she'll be back next year and Rio is her ultimate goal.
Olympic gold medalist Dee Dee Trotter didn't qualify for the Women's 400 Meter finals, but said she'll be back next year and Rio is her ultimate goal.

Copyright 2015 KLCC

Corrine Bayer
Corrine is a volunteer reporter from University of Oregon School of Journalism and Communication.