POSTED: Monday August 24th 2009

2009 IAAF World Athletics Championships Day 9 Team USA quotes

IAAF World Championships - Berlin - August 15-23

Bernard Lagat (Tuscon, Arizona), Men’s 5000 meters silver medalist


was determined to not let Bekele leave me. When he moved, I moved. In
the last lap, they started going hard. With 80 to go, he went, and I
passed him with 50 to go. He came back at me with 40 to go, and we
struggled over 20 meters.


I gave it all I had today. I really
wanted to retain my title, and wanted to defend it really, really bad.
There was nothing more important than for me to defend my title.
However, after the finish, after I realized that I lost to a great
champion, I wasn’t disappointed. In the 1500, I got bronze, and today I
got the silver. What I achieved here in this meet is a step ahead of
what I did last year, because of the injury.

Brittney Reese (Gulfport, Mississippi), women’s long jump
The thought of winning the world championship hasn’t quite sunk in yet.

went back after the qualifying round and looked at some of my jumps
from the national championships in Eugene, and it looked like I needed
more speed.

Shannon Rowbury (San Francisco, California), Women’s 1500 meters bronze medalist
This whole world championships have been pretty physical (in my event), and it’s been a good training ground for me.

thought with 100 meters to go, I liked my odds, but I wasn’t quite able
to close the gap on those girls, but that was where I wanted to be.


anticipated (a slow early pace). I knew that in the second half, the
pace would pick up. After the semi-finals, where we went through 800 in
2:20, 2:15 seemed pretty comfortable. I tried to stay relaxed, and be
ready to react when stuff happens.


It’s unfortunate when stuff
like this happens (the fall of Ethiopia’s Gelete Burka). Even if I were
to get the bronze, that’s not how I want to get it. I want to get it on
my own terms.

Anna Willard (Mammoth Lakes, California), Women’s 1500 meters

knew (the race pace) would pick up dramatically. I didn’t feel
comfortable with the early pace, but I tried to put it out of my head.
I was in pretty good position with 400 to go, and if I closed it out
the way that I’m supposed to, then I’d be in medal contention.

However, my last 250 didn’t feel so hot. I was trying to find that last gear, and it wasn’t there.
It’s been a big year for all of us, with improvements by all three of us.
Debbie Dunn (Norfolk, Va.), Women’s 4 x 400 relay 1st leg

the lead leg) Around the 200-meter, I saw Allyson (Felix) open it up,
and gave us a pretty bigger lead. I’m happy with the time and I’m happy
to win the gold. My mindset was to put it out there. Get these girls
out in front and we are going for the gold.

Allyson Felix( Los Angeles), Women’s 4 x 400 relay 2nd leg

Dunn’s big lead-off leg) She did that. She made it very easy for me.
She gave me a very comfortable lead. I just love coming together with
these young girls. It’s a great way to end the championships.

Lashinda Demus (Palmdale, Calif.), Women’s 4 x 400 relay, 3rd leg

liked that big lead. But I still didn’t let myself off the hook. I did
what I had to do. I saw Sanya pulling me in. She made me go for her.
She finished it off for us.

Sanya Richards (Austin, Texas), Women’s 4 x 400 relay anchor leg

know what it’s like to bring the stick in. I think it’s encouraging
when you see a teammate bringing you on. Like she said, she didn’t let
herself off the hook. I wasn’t going to let her off the hook either. I
wanted her to run her best leg. She definitely did that. I’m happy to
have a good lead. At the same time, we want to run fast times. We did
that today.

What does the time and gold mean?
Sanya Richards

means that we made the right choices. Our team looked phenomenal today.
I thought all three legs ran really well. We are happy to get the gold.

Allyson Felix

It tells me we have a very
bright future. To run that fast, unchallenged. There’s a lot left in
the tank. I’m looking forward to the next time we can come together.

Lashinda Demus

means the world to me. I’m just excited to be on the team. Like they
said, in the future, this team will go places, we’ll go far and we’ll
be in the history books.

Debbie Dunn
It’s definitely an honor to run with these girls. I’m happy to be here. We will run fast in the future.
Jeremy Wariner (Waco, Texas), Men’s 4 x 400 relay

you have the best quarter-milers and the best 400 hurdlers in the world
out there at the same time on one team, we expect greatness. That’s
what we did today, we showed greatness. Down the backstretch, I was
looking at the screen the whole time to see where my position was. When
I got to the turn, my coach before the race told me just open it up and
that’s what I did. I went out there and ran my last 200 as hard as I
could to give him a big lead.

Angelo Taylor (Atlanta), men’s 4x400m 1st leg

been doing this for a while. My first World Championship was nine years
ago. It was 10 years ago. I handed it off to Michael Johnson.

Kerron Clement (Los Angeles), men’s 4x400m 3rd leg

really excited. We came out here and we got a gold medal. The plan was
to do it all along. Once you put together the four best quarter-milers
in the country, that’s what’s going to happen. I’m sorry, and hurdlers,
me and Angelo. We did a fantastic job on the relay today. It’s good
motivation. We always produce fast quarter-milers in our country. I’m
really excited that we were able to put together four of the best ones
and bring home the gold.

LaShawn Merritt (Suffolk, Va.), men’s 4x400m anchor leg

and flat guys can run?) Definitely. The 400 hurdles is more work than
the open 400. We had the world champion, an Olympic champion help me
and Jeremy on the relay. We couldn’t lose. If every man went out and
did his job, we knew we were going to get the victory. I knew it was in
good shape from the start, as long as everybody knew like I knew they
could run. Everybody ran like I knew they could run. We had the top two
quarter-milers, world champion and Olympic champion in the hurdles. Our
main thing was, “Everybody, go do their jobs. Just get the stick around
and have fun.

Sean Furey (San Diego, California), Men’s javelin

wasn’t that great. I don’t think I was too scared or nervous with the
situation. I didn’t feel sharp. My nervous system wasn’t firing. I’m
happy that I felt calm and in control.


I’ll go back and watch
the film, but I know I wasn’t explosive with my legs. If my legs aren’t
explosive, then they have a hard time catching up with my arms and
upper body.

Brianna Glenn (Chula Vista, California), Women’s long jump

wanted it to go a little bit better, but today just wasn’t my day. I
know that I have a little bit more in me, but I wasn’t able to show
that today.

Chris Solinsky (Madison, Wis.), Men’s 5,000 meters finals

was in it when it was easy. We didn’t know what to expect. We thought
the Kenyans were going to take it out on (Ethiopia’s Kenenisa) Bekele,
or he was going to run from the gun. It worked out to be really slow. I
wasn’t concentrating enough I don’t think in the middle stages when it
started to get to a moderate pace. I wasn’t running as efficient as I
should have. It cost me at the end because when they took off, it just
broke my spirit. I never do this, but I looked back on the backstretch
and there was nobody really behind me. They crushed my spirits. It was
my first worlds. I got a lot of learning to do. It showed today, for
sure. I learned a lot today.

Matt Tegenkamp (Portland, Ore. ), Men’s 5,000 meters finals

was a hard push. We got into a pace, but in the first mile and 2K was
really slow. We just pushed and pushed, and everyone took a share of
the lead. I did everything I could. 13:20 within four days is a huge
improvement. That tells me I’m going in the right direction. It’s a
huge improvement over last year. I’m said it’s not going be done all in
one year. It will be done over a period of years. Next year, with it
being an off year, we are going to focus strictly on what we need to
accomplish for 2011 and 2012, which are major championships. We will
have a great build in to those two years. I’m disappointed that I was
right there to take the medals. It was right in my sweet spot. It just
wasn’t there today. You can’t be disappointed. You have to have it on
that day.

Christin Wurth-Thomas (Springdale, Ark.), Women’s 1,500 meters final

talk about experience. I think didn’t feel comfortable. It was my first
finals. But I can’t hold my head. I made some mistakes. I felt like I
closed well, which is something I haven’t been doing well this year.
That was positive. But I wasn’t in position to close, and that’s a
major mistake. This is my first final. I had some nerves, and I needed
to shake it out. To be running with the top of the world, I can’t be
holding my head.

Tera Moody (Colorado Springs, Colorado), women’s marathon

wanted to break 2:30 today, but with the heat, I had to be a little
more conservative. I felt really great, but I just didn’t have the

I felt great from the get-go. I was getting a bit impatient.
Desiree Davila (Rochester Hills, Michigan), women’s marathon

went out pretty even, and was able to pick it up along the way. A huge
pack was sitting in front of me, and as it broke up, I was able to
weave my way through. I felt great going into the last lap, and was
able to pick people off.

I came in very fit, and having the confidence from the Chicago Marathon, and being able to move through the field was huge.
Kara Goucher (Portland, Oregon), women’s marathon

legs felt great, and I felt really relaxed. It was great to have a loop
course where my husband and coach could yell at me. The pace felt
comfortable, and it felt like practice.


I had a lot of problems
keeping my fluids down. After the second personal fluid station, I
started throwing up what I took in. I would start taking it, then a
mile later, I’d throw up.


I started to cramp with 13k to go,
and then the field started to surge. It wasn’t there. I just wasn’t
good enough today. I thought I hydrated myself well leading up to the

When the field made their break, my body wouldn’t go.
Paige Higgins (Flagstaff, Arizona), women’s marathon
It went very well, but the heat got to me. Tera Moody and I pretty much buddied up together and pursued the second chase pack.
We were in it to get a real good team placing.

liked running on a criterium-style course like this. You can figure out
the undulations, and you can break up the course into sections. My
coach told me to do a 30k run, and a 12k race. The fans made a huge
difference, and that’s why I love this course. It’s very
runner-friendly, and even if you’re not a runner, you can see us pass
by four times.

Zoila Gomez (Alamosa, Colorado), women’s marathon

wasn’t what I had expected. The first 10k I was right on what I wanted
to run, and on the second lap I was feeling th esame thing.


before the half-marathon, I started feeling some hot spots on the
bottoms of my feet. The race was harder than I thought with the
blisters and all. I’m glad I finished the race, but I wished I could
have done better.


The USA Track & Field Communications
Department wishes to express its heartfelt thanks to Paul Merca and
Mark Foyer for all their hard work in gathering quotes from Team USA
athletes during the 12th IAAF World Championships in Athletics.


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