Prefontaine Track and Field Meet : Tarpenning Clears 19-0 1/4; Quirot, Williams Also Win

Associated Press

Hometown favorite Kory Tarpenning cleared 19 feet in the pole vault, but otherwise foreign athletes provided most of the excitement Saturday in the Prefontaine track and field meet.

For example:

--Cuba's Ana Quirot broke stadium and meet records in the women's 400 meters with the fastest time in the event this year.

--Canada's Lynn Williams beat Norway's Ingrid Kristiansen and recorded the fastest women's 3,000-meter time of the year.

--Wolfgang Schmidt, now of West Germany, continued his comeback with a victory in the discus, two years after being allowed to leave East Germany, where he had been imprisoned for 15 months.

Helped by a strong tailwind, Tarpenning, the No. 1-ranked vaulter in the United States last year, didn't miss through 19 feet 0 1/4 inch but failed three times at a personal best 19-4 1/4.

"All pole vaulters like to have a tailwind, but this was too much today," Tarpenning said. "I feel I'm getting in good form for (The Athletics Congress) meet in two weeks," he said.

Quirot, part of a four-person Cuban contingent that picked up two firsts, a second and a third in the meet, bolted to a big lead on the first turn and breezed to victory in 50.14 seconds.

Her time broke Diane Dixon's Hayward Field record by 0.27 of a second.

Quirot, 26, was ranked No. 1 in the world in the 800 meters last year but didn't compete in the Seoul Olympics because Cuba boycotted the Games.

"I would have broken 50 seconds if the wind hadn't been so strong," Quirot said through an interpreter.

Williams, a 1984 Olympic bronze medalist in the 3,000 meters and an Olympic finalist last year in both the 1,500 and 3,000, took the lead from Kristiansen midway through the race and won in 8:47.92.

Kristiansen, the world 5,000 and 10,000 record-holder, was second in 8:59.20. It was her first race on a track in the United States.

Schmidt, the 1976 Olympic silver medalist, won with a throw of 222 feet 7 inches.

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