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Maxwell, Robbins Post World Records on Final Day of USA Masters Champs

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08/11/2008 - 06:07

August 11, 2008 from USATF press release (SPOKANE, WA) Ralph Maxwell and Stephen Robbins each set masters world records Sunday at the 2008 USA Masters Outdoor Track & Field Championships at Spokane Falls Community College in Spokane, WA. The USA Masters Outdoor Championships annually showcases extraordinary demonstrations of speed, power, skill and endurance by many of the world's finest masters track and field athletes. Athletes compete in five-year age divisions, beginning at age 30.

The first two days of the 2008 USA Masters Championships in Spokane were held under mostly sunny skies with temperatures in the low to mid 90s. The competition on Sunday was staged under cloudy skies with temperatures in the high 50s, to the low to mid 60s.

A resident of Alamo, TX, 88-year old Ralph Maxwell won the M85 age division 300m hurdles in 1:21.44 seconds. His performance shattered the previous M85 world record of 1:27.09 set by Henri Maynard of France, on September 9, 1007.

Eleven time world masters sprint champion Stephen Robbins, who moved from Seattle to Cleveland Heights, OH, a week ago, bettered the listed world M65 200m record in winning this afternoon in 25.36 seconds. Earlier this year he posted a pending world record time of 25.20 seconds, with both times bettering the listed W65 world record of 25.46 seconds by Guido Muller of Germany from July 17, 2005.

Robbins set the listed M65 world record in the 100 meters of 12.37 seconds on August 2, 2008 in Eugene, OR. "I relaxed and let the speed come out," said Robbins after his 200m triumph.

Lary, Dockstader, Griffiths post American records

Audrey Lary of Frederick, MD., posted an American record in the W70-74 age-group in winning the triple jump with a hop, skip and jump of 8.23m/27 feet. Elsewhere, Shirley Dockstader of Mill Valley, CA, set the W75 American record in winning her age-group 10 km race walk in 1:11:17, and Caryl Senn Griffiths of Massapequa, NY posted an American W45 record with her winning 400m hurdles time of 1:09.34.

Collins wins sprint hat trick again

Having already won national championships in the M55 100m and 400m, Bill Collins of Houston, TX, entered today's competition looking for a win in the 200 meters to complete a sweep in all three sprints. Collins crossed the finish line first in 23.99 seconds, and in doing so won the three sprints (100m, 200m, 400m) at a USA Masters Outdoor Championships for the tenth time of his remarkable career. Collins has won the triple seven times in world championship competition, and owns 27 World Outdoor individual titles.

"I'm really pleased," said Collins. "There was a bit of a headwind and no heat. That was a blessing. I don't mind, everybody has to run in it (cool weather) and I can adjust to it."

In other men's 200m action, reigning World Outdoor 100m champion Stan Whitley of Alta Loma, CA, captured the M60 title, winning in 25.77 seconds. Whitley edged out 2008 USA Masters M60 400m champion Charles Allie (26.18) of Pittsburgh, PA, in winning the crown.

"Charles Allie and I have been competing against each other for at least a dozen years and he's a tough competitor," said Whitley. "Usually he's a little stronger, but he's been concentrating on the 400m. He's tough, and the difference is he had to run two rounds in the quarter and that had to take something out of him." Whitley won the M60 100m title on Saturday in 12.47 seconds, with Allie the runner-up in 12.65.

Martin Takes fifth Gold, Thane wins again

It seems that it wouldn't be a day at the USATF Masters Outdoor Championships without all-time great Kathy Martin (Northport, NY) winning a gold medal, and Sunday was no exception. Martin, who had already posted W55 age-group wins in the 2,000m steeplechase, 5,000m, 800m and 10,000 meters, this morning captured the W55 1,500 meters, crossing the finish line in 5 minutes 13.49 seconds. The owner of countless masters records and national titles, Martin was named the first-ever USATF National Masters Athlete of the Year in 2004.

Although she had not competed at the Masters Outdoor Nationals since 2003 when she won titles in the 800m and 1,500m, Mary Thane of Missoula, MT, has made the most of her return to the Championships in winning the W45 800 meters yesterday and winning the 1,500 meters today in 4:58.49. Thane, a 2004 Olympic Trials participant, finished ahead of two-time Team USA World Cross Country Championships team member and the American record holder for the 5,000m in both the 40-44 and 45-49 age groups, Carmen Ayala-Troncoso of Austin, TX, who finished second in 5:04.51.

Ford wins 1,500m

2007 USA Masters Outdoor 800m champion Kevin Ford was the runner-up in the M40 800m on Saturday, and toed the line in the 1,500m this morning determined to not let that happen again. Born in London, England, Ford became a U.S. citizen 16 years ago and won his first-ever 1,500m race Sunday in crossing the finish line in 4:10.78. Ford began his kick with 200 meters to go and the rest of the field was left in his wake.

"When you go you've got to be decisive," said Ford. "You can't be wishy-washy, you've got to go with conviction and it panned out. I can't believe it. I had never won a 1,500m race before, not even in high school. I came to the national championships wanting two golds. I got a silver in the 800 meters yesterday, but I wanted the 1,500. It's been a long time coming and this means a lot."

Another men's 1,500m winner Sunday was Nolan Shaheed, who captured the M55 5,000m national title on Thursday in 17:00.60. A resident of Pasadena, CA, Shaheed is the former musical director for Motown all-time great Marvin Gaye, and also worked with such notables as Diana Ross, Stevie Wonder and Count Bassie. Shaheed was fully in tune on the track this morning in winning the M55 1,500 meters in 4:44.38. Shaheed is the reigning world 1,500m and 5,000m champion in the M55 age group.

Next July Shaheed turns sixty and said, "I look forward to winning in my new group. The benefit of masters track is that competitors look forward to getting older every five years in order to be at the young point of their next age group."

For more information on the 2008 USA Masters Outdoor Track & Field Championships in Spokane, Wash., including the complete results, visit: