Thursday, March 11, 2010

Time for Doha predictions!

Well, I failed to do predictions for Berlin last summer, so I might as well weigh in for the indoor championships that start…um, in about 10 hours.  So first I have to issue a caveat: this is my first year really following indoor track at the world level, so I’m still new to the game.  Also I’ve been busy and distracted.  And I’ll think of another excuse, unless I do really well and then I’ll say it’s because I’m awesome and know lots.  Anyway, this is for Rachel. :)

Men:

60 Meters:  Ivory Williams seems to be out, due to being an idiot, so that opens up the field a little bit.  I see 5 guys with a chance: Daniel Bailey, Dwain Chambers, Nesta Carter, Lerone Clarke and Mike Rodgers.  Throw out Clarke, and you’re down to four.  I think Bailey’s young but real, so I think it goes like this:  Daniel Bailey, Mike Rodgers, and Chambers for the bronze.  (I hope Nesta nudges his drug-addled ass, though)

60 Meter Hurdles:  This is down to Terrence Trammell and Dayron Robles.  I say Trammell, Robles, Svoboda.

400 Meters:  Batman!  Bershawn Jackson takes this, I think.  He looks unbeatable this year.  Could be a USA sweep here, but I don’t want to rule out Gillick from Ireland.

800 Meters:  Ismail Ismail looks monstrous so far; really tough to beat.  I see him coming in ahead of Boaz Lalang, with Abubaker Kaki third.  Eastern Europe has a couple guys that can fly, but these three are just too strong and too swift.

1500 Meters:  Wow, where to start?  Kenyans and Ethiopians, oh my!  Laalou, Iguider, Keitany, Gathimba, Mekonnen, Gebremedhin, Ruiz, Ali…so many strong runners to choose from.  This will be a monster race.  In the end, I think Mekonnen’s got the kick, then Ali, then someone else…I’m not even going to try.  This could turn into a quick race.

3000 Meters:  Kip!  Bernard Lagat is in phenomenal shape, you guys.  He’ll have a battle with Tariku Bekele, Sergio Sanchez, Augustine Choge, and Sammy Mutahi.  This is the showcase race in my opinion.  I think Choge is unstoppable, Lagat brings home a silver and Sanchez makes Spain proud.  But truly, this is wiiiide open.  Expect a tepid early pace and a screaming close over the last 1200 meters or so.

Women:

60 Meters:  Nobody is even in the same class as Carmelita Jeter and LaVerne Jones-Ferrette.  Jeter wins, Veronica Campbell-Brown in third.

60 Meter Hurdles:  I so want my girl Lolo to win this, but I don’t think she’s all the way back just yet.  Priscilla Lopes-Schliep continues her bombardment of the sport, followed by Lolo and Seattle native Ginnie Powell.

400 Meters: Allyson Felix takes her new Nike duds to a gold, with Debbie Dunn and Firova following.  If only Sanya Richards-Ross was here!  #sweep

800 Meters:  Kinda loaded here!  Russia is (suspiciously) loaded, especially, with Savinova and Zinurova posting super quick times.  I see a quick race shaping up, with Meadows edging out Anna Pierce, with one of the Russians in third.

1500 Meters:  Maryam Jamal, Gelete Burka, Gezahegne and Jelagat make this as loaded as the men’s 1500.  It’s Burka’s crazy fast kick, Jamal, and Gezahegne.

3000 Meters:  Can anyone run with Meseret Defar?  No, anyone cannot.  Sentayehu Ejigu has challenged her, and I think is well positioned for silver, with Vivian Cheruiyot grabbing bronze.  I think Defar pushes the pace early to try and break those two, and it’s going to turn into a rout – possibly a one-woman rout.

I’d love to cover the field events for you, but I just don’t have the know-how.  I know it’ll be nice to see Blanka Vlasic give us a primal scream again (Oh, how I’ve missed you, Blanka), Ennis dominates the Pentathlon if she’s healthy (Fountain and Dobrynska duke it out if not)

Okay, girls and boys, that’s it!  The fun starts at 6am PDT tomorrow on Universal Sports, so let’s all get on there and clog up the intertubes!

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